Reward me for shopping!
April 22, 2007 12:06 PM   Subscribe

Which credit cards have the best rewards?

I have looked at
This question,
but it is over two years old, and I'm hoping for some updates.

The cards I have considered are Amazon, some type of gas card, or possibly one of those Gap/Old Navy/Banana Republic cards.

Which cards give you your favorite types of benefits? Cash back, discounts, air miles, gas points? On the flip side, which cards are too good to be true, and not worth the hassle?
posted by kidsleepy to Work & Money (19 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
Try here.
posted by Kwantsar at 12:11 PM on April 22, 2007

I believe that the Amazon Visa through Chase is usually highly rated (from memory, it's been mentioned recently on a couple of personal finance blogs). It's 1 point per dollar (except purchases on Amazon are 3 points per dollar) and you get a $25 Amazon gift certificate at 2500 points. I've had it for a few years and have always been happy with it.
posted by IndigoRain at 12:11 PM on April 22, 2007

I also use the Amazon Visa almost exclusively. I mostly use the gift certificates myself, but they do make great gifts.

Chase has annoyingly bad customer service, so if you're someone who ever uses credit card customer service phone lines, I'd strongly recommend using a different card.
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:18 PM on April 22, 2007

I turn my AmEx points into frequent flyer miles and I'm happy with it
posted by matteo at 12:19 PM on April 22, 2007

I have a CitiCard Dividend card. That's advertized as giving you 5% back on groceries, gasoline, ISP and a few other types of purchases, and 1% back on everything else, up to a limit of (I think) $350 a year.

This was great until a couple of months ago when they sent me a letter in the mail announcing that the 5% was dropping down to 2%. Now it's only good.
posted by alms at 12:27 PM on April 22, 2007

I have a JetBlue AMEX, and I like it so far. It's my first card that has benefits. I fly between San Francisco and Boston frequently, and love the JetBlue service, so earning points with them on the card is cool. As far as using the miles goes, there are no blackout dates, the only restriction is that they only allow a couple of freeloaders per flight, so you need to book well in advance. I had to extend my June trip to Boston by 2 days in order to use my free flight when I booked in early April.

You need 100 JetBlue points for a free flight, and you get one point per $200 you spend on the card. In addition, each cross-country flight for me nets me 24 points. So four flights plus $800 (which I would easily rack up if I paid for the flights with the card) gets me a free trip. Also, each time you get a point from using the card, they extend the expiration date of all your existing points. That's otherwise the main drawback of JetBlue's frequent flyer program; points expire a year after you get them if you haven't used them. I'd have to fly five times a year with them to get a free flight that way.

There is a $40 annual fee.
posted by autojack at 12:30 PM on April 22, 2007

I've been fairly happy with my CapitalOne miles card. it works out to 80 dollars spent onthe card = 1 dollar towards an airline ticket (on any carrier, you buy it, they reimburse you). The kicker for me was that you get a 10k point bonus if you spend 10k on the card every year. (That translates to 125 bucks!) For the first two years, I've had about a ticket and a half per year on fairly moderate spending.

If there are better deals out there, I'd love to hear them too, though.
posted by chrisamiller at 12:34 PM on April 22, 2007

Really depends on what kind of rewards you're looking for. For cash rewards, most would agree that the Chase PerfectCard Platinum Mastercard is the best:

6% rebate on all gas purchases for the first 90 days
3% rebate on all gas purchases thereafter
1% rebate on all other purchases
Rebates credited to your account every month
0% APR on new balance transfers for up to 12 months
No annual fee
posted by jckll at 12:55 PM on April 22, 2007 [3 favorites]

Probably out-of-date, and for Canada, but maybe this review helps.
posted by mediaddict at 1:25 PM on April 22, 2007

If you're a student, The MtvU card is hard to beat: It's basically the Citi Dimond Select card(Good, because the optimum cash-out (100pts = $1) is reached at fairly low levels, and it gives 5x points for a fairly wide array of purchases), but it expands on that base by giving you 5x points for book purchases(Wheee! College!) and extra points based on your GPA(Which requires mailing in a printout every semester), and keeping your balance paid off.
posted by Orb2069 at 2:14 PM on April 22, 2007

I like the combination of Citi Driver's Edge and Citi Professional. Driver's Edge gets you 6% back on purchases from gas stations, grocery stores, and pharmacies for the first year. The Professional card gets you 3 points per dollar on restaurants, office supply stores, gas stations, and auto rentals.

FWIW, credit cards that give you points that you can redeem for airline tickets are generally a bad deal, as real airline miles are much more flexible regarding changes and whatnot. When you use something like the Capital One miles card, there is a fairly restrictive limit on the cost of the ticket, in addition to it being a nonrefundable ticket with all the restrictions that come with it.
posted by wierdo at 3:21 PM on April 22, 2007

Fatwallet has a continually updated thread on this subject.
posted by Mr. Gunn at 3:50 PM on April 22, 2007

isnt it the case that with some of the citibank cards, online purchases are not eligible for cash-back? probably 1/2 the money i spend is online, so that seemed like a showstopper. i remember reading that at some point, which steered me toward the capital one cards.
posted by joeblough at 8:24 PM on April 22, 2007

If youre paying a monthly fee, youve pretty much lost the credit card game. All the cards I was looking at for milage benefits had something like 40+ a year. Essentially, youre giving them 40 dollars for nothing. Its easier for me to apply 40 dollars to a real ticket. I dont fly enough to break past the -40 balance.

This is why I just stick with discover. I get the 1% back and pay no annual fee.
posted by damn dirty ape at 8:48 PM on April 22, 2007

Response by poster: Does anyone have any experience with the Juniper iTunes card promoted on the Apple website?
posted by kidsleepy at 6:00 AM on April 23, 2007

I've had good results with the Brooks Brothers platinum card. 1 point=$1/3 points=$1 spent at BB, with an annual promotion that doubles the points for the month of December.

You get $20 coupon cards every 2000 points. I find that this subsidizes my wardrobe for work very well.
posted by dr_dank at 7:40 AM on April 23, 2007

I have the Citi Premier Pass and have earned heaps of points. The points are with the "Thank You Network" and you have to have a bank acct with citi in addition to the cc. You earn 1 point for every $ spent, plus more (3-8) with certain online retailers, and 2 for gas & groceries. What can you do with all those points? Buy airline tickets, (and whenever someone flies on a ticket you bought with the cc, you get extra points), or buy stuff like digital cameras, etc. It has worked out very well for me because my company buys a lot of travel with it.

Another added bonus- you get free companion airfare within the US (even Hawaii)...the main cardholder has to fly and you have to go through their ticketing-but not bad!
posted by hazel at 8:37 AM on April 23, 2007

shoot, I was gonna sound all shill-like for the Citi Premier Pass, but hazel beat me to it. So, yeah, what hazel said.

Also, I have the Amex Delta Skymiles card - I got some ridiculous high amount of miles with my first purchase (15K miles) and you get double miles on a bunch of stuff (I don't think it's double on everything all the time anymore, the way it used to be). There's an annual fee of ummm, 80? bucks, but they'll waive it if you [a] have another card with them, or [b] threaten to close the account because of it.

I've also been tempted by their new Clear Amex which doesn't have an annual (or any other, like late) fee and offers rewards.
posted by yggdrasil at 11:10 AM on April 23, 2007

« Older Mainstream slumming on the sci fi side of the...   |   How to make Seattle more like the Bay Area? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.