Credit Card Guide
As long as you are paying your bills every month, it can pay off to diversify your credit card portfolio, in order to really hack your rewards. I am averaging about 4% on everything I normally buy (groceries, gas, travel, etc.), due to clever rewards card hacking. This page is meant to be a guide to help you achieve similar results.
Look for Credit Cards by Category
- Bonus Incentive Promotion Cards: cards with a significant bonus cash/rewards offer associated with signing up.
- Cash Back Cards: the best all-purpose cash back rewards cards.
- Grocery Rewards Cards: outside of mortgages/rent, groceries are the #1 monthly expense for Americans, and we all buy them. I get 6% cash back on mine ($360/year).
- Gas Rewards Cards: have a heavy commute? 3-5% cash back is attainable.
- Restaurant Rewards Cards: dine out a lot for travel or otherwise? These are the best restaurant rewards cards, with some paying up to 5%.
- Travel/Miles Rewards Cards: these cards are geared to travel die-hards & offer big hotel, airline, or other rewards.
- Balance Transfer Cards: looking to get away from a high interest card payments? These cards offer long 0% introductory APR periods so you can avoid 15-20%+ APR on your existing cards.
- 0% APR Cards: don’t want to pay interest for an introductory period? These cards have an introductory 0% APR.
- Poor/No Credit: these are debit and secured low-interest credit cards for those with poor credit.
In-Depth Credit Card Reviews:
I’ve previously reviewed a few of my favorite credit cards that can be a good fit for readers, if used properly:
- Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express: My card of choice as the best rewards card for supermarket purchases. It offers 6% cash back at US supermarkets, up to $6,000 per year in purchases, 3% cash back at US gas stations and select US department stores, and 1% cash back on other purchases. You can also earn 150 reward dollars after you make $1,000 in purchases in the first three months of cardmembership. My favorite card!
- Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express: Sister card to the above, it offers 3% cash back at US supermarkets, up to $6000 per year in purchases, 2% cash back at US gas stations and select US department stores, 1% cash back on other purchases. You can earn 100 reward dollars after you make $1,000 in purchases in the first three months of cardmembership. Why are the cash back percentages less than the Preferred? No annual fee. It may be a better option for those who are single.
- TrueEarnings® Card from Costco & American Express: Earn 3% cash back at US gas stations and on gasoline at Costco up to $4,000 per year in purchases, then 1%. Also, 2% cash back at US restaurants; 2% cash back on eligible travel purchases, including at Costco; and 1% cash back on other purchases, including at Costco.
- Discover it®: The best card out there for balance transfers at the moment. It also has flexible cash back rewards.
- Citi® Dividend Platinum Select® Visa® Card – $100 Cash Back: Another good balance transfer card with a nice sign-on bonus of $100 and cash back rewards.
Informative Credit Card Articles:
- How I Got $435 Cash Back Last Year Just for Buying my Regular Groceries
- Does Opening or Cancelling a Credit Card Impact your Credit Score?
- How to Get Free Credit Monitoring
- Using 0% APR Balance Transfer Cards to Pay Off Debt
- How to Get 3 Free Credit Reports Annually
- Denied Credit? Now you will Get a Free Credit Score
- Hard Credit Inquiry Vs. Soft Credit Inquiry & Their Impact on your Credit Score
- How to Wipe Out Credit Card Late Fees
- Does Closing a Check Account Hurt your Credit Score?
- American Express’s Purchase Protection Plan
Here’s a full list of credit card articles.