5% Cash Back Cards: Gas Stations, Restaurants, PayPal, and Travel – July thru September 2019

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

5percentbackActivation time for 3rd Quarter! The credit cards below offer up to 5% cash back on specific categories that rotate each quarter. It takes a little extra attention, but it can add up to hundreds of dollars in additional rewards per year without changing your spending habits. You can also buy gift cards with the 5% back now but spend the gift cards later. New cardmembers may also get an upfront sign-up bonus.

Chase Freedom VisaChase Freedom – $150 Bonus

From July 1st through September 30th, 2019 you can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent in the following categories:

  • Gas Stations
  • Select Streaming Services including Netflix, Hulu, Sling, Vudu, Fubo TV, Apple Music, SiriusXM, Pandora, and Spotify.

Enroll each quarter at ChaseBonus.com. As long as you activate by the end of the quarter the rewards are retroactive. All other purchases earn 1% back, with no tiers or expiration of rewards. Technically, you earn Ultimate Rewards points which can also be converted to airline miles or hotel points instead of cash if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve card. Currently, the Chase Freedom card is offering $150 bonus cash back if you sign up and make $500 in purchases in your first three months. No annual fee.

Discover it 14 ImageDiscover it Card

From July 1st through September 30th, 2019 you can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent in the following categories:

  • Restaurants
  • PayPal

Enroll after logging into your online account (look on the right-hand side). 5% rewards won’t apply until after you activate your rewards, so it is best to activate now before you forget. No annual fee.

New cardmember bonus details. If you are a new applicant and sign up via my Discover Card referral link, you will get a $50 Cashback Bonus after your first purchase within 3 months of being approved. You will also get Cashback Match for an entire year – a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year, automatically. During those 12 months, your $50 Cashback Bonus becomes $100, your 5% cash back rewards becomes 10% cash back, and your 1% cash back rewards become 2% cash back. You can verify this on the application by clicking on “See rates, rewards and other info” and searching for this text:

Cashback MatchTM: : No purchase minimums. After the first 12 consecutive billing periods that your new account is open, we will match all of the cash back rewards you’ve earned and apply them to your account in the following one or two billing periods. If your account is closed or no longer in the cash back reward program at the time we calculate your potential award, your cash back will not be matched. You’ve earned cash back rewards when they have posted to your account by the end of the 12th consecutive billing period. This promotional offer may not be offered in the future. This exclusive offer is available only to new cardmembers.

TERMS OF CASHBACK BONUS OFFER: Get a $50 Cashback Bonus after you make your first purchase within 3 months of being approved. Promotional award will be applied within 8 weeks. The promotional award is in addition to the Cashback Bonus earned on all purchases.

ABOC Platinum Rewards Card – $150 Statement Credit Offer

From July 1st through September 30th, 2019 you can earn 5X rewards on up to $1,500 spent in the following categories:

  • Travel, including qualifying airline, cruise, car rental, hotel, and travel agency purchases.

You must register each quarter at ABOCRewards.com or in your online account. Currently, the ABOC Platinum Rewards Mastercard is offering a $150 statement credit if you sign up and make $1,200 in purchases in your first 90 days. No annual fee.

U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card. You get to choose the two 5% cash back categories every quarter, out of a preset selection of specific categories:

  • Fast Food
  • Cell Phone Providers
  • Home Utilities
  • Ground Transportation
  • Select Clothing Stores
  • Electronics Stores
  • Car Rentals
  • Gyms/Fitness Centers
  • Sporting Goods Stores
  • Department Stores
  • Furniture Stores
  • Movie Theaters
  • TV, Internet, and Streaming Services

Unfortunately, you can’t pick a broad category like gas stations, restaurants, or grocery stores. Make sure to choose your categories each quarter, even if you want them to stay the same. If you do not choose your categories, all purchases revert to only earning 1% cash back for that quarter.

Currently, the U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa card is offering $150 bonus cash back if you sign up and make $500 in eligible net purchases in your first 90 days. No annual fee.

American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card. This card earns 6% cash back at US supermarkets all year long (on up to $6,000 per year) and. 3% cash back at US gas stations. New: 3% cash back on transit and 6% cash back on Netflix/Spotify/Hulu. I use this card all year long for groceries, and then in December use up the $6k annual limit on gift cards bought in the supermarket aisle. New cardholders are also eligible for a $250 statement credit after $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. $95 annual fee. See details in link.

Amazon Prime Rewards Card. Earn 5% back at Amazon.com and Whole Foods all year long. Prime membership required. 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores (yawn… see below). New cardholder bonus varies by person. No annual fee.

Citi Dividend Card. This card is no longer available to new applicants, but if you still have the grandfathered card you can view and activate your quarterly 5% category here. Limit of $300 cash back for the calendar year.

Don’t settle for the “1% on everything else” that these cards offer. Get 2% cash back or higher. Check out the card-specific reviews for details.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Southwest Credit Card Bonuses Toward 2019/2020 Companion Pass to Hawaii (Up to 80k Points)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

New 80,000 point business card bonus, perfect for those aiming at Companion Pass! Southwest Airlines offers a unique feature called the Companion Pass, which lets you pick one person to fly with free when you book either paid or award flights. If you either fly 100 qualifying one-way flights or earn 110,000 qualifying points in a calendar year, and you’ll earn the Companion Pass for the remainder of that year plus the following full calendar year. For example, if you earned it in June 2019, you would have the benefit for the rest of 2019 and all of 2020. You can change your designated companion up to three times each calendar year.

Points earned from credit cards count toward that 110,000 point requirement, including sign-up bonuses. You can often get very close to that magic number when you add up the potential miles from these Southwest credit cards:

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus credit card

  • 40,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
  • 3,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • $69 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier card

  • 40,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
  • 6,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • $99 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority card

  • 40,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
  • 7,500 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • $75 Southwest annual travel credit.
  • Four Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
  • 20% back on inflight drinks, WiFi, messaging, and movies.
  • Earn tier qualifying points towards A-list status.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • $149 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business card

  • 60,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 6,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • $99 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business card

  • 60,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 6,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • $99 annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business card

  • 80,000 Rapid Rewards points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 9,000 bonus points after each Cardmember anniversary.
  • 3 points per $1 spent on Southwest Airlines® purchases.
  • 2 points per $1 spent on social media and search engine advertising, Internet, cable and phone services and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
  • Inflight WiFi Credits of up to 365 x $8 credits.
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre?® Fee credit in the form of a statement credit of up to $100 every four years.
  • $195 annual fee.

Value of Rapid Rewards points. Redeeming Southwest points for flights varies in a narrow range, but a very reasonable approximation from my experience is 1.5 cents in Wanna Get Away airfare in per point. That works out to $600+ in Wanna Get Away airfare from 40,000 points or $1,200+ in Wanna Get Away airfare from 80,000 points (you are still liable for taxes and fees from $5.60 one-way). Importantly, Southwest does NOT have blackout dates or seat restrictions when you redeem with points. This means that Southwest points are much easier to use than a “saver award” on traditional airlines.

Now, if you manage to qualify for the the Companion Pass on every trip that you book with those points, that doubles the potential value of each award redemption. In other words, 110,000 Rapid Rewards, would usually get you $1,700 in Wanna Get Away airfare, but with the Companion Pass you’d get an extra companion ticket for every flight booked.

A backup option is gift card redemptions. You can still redeem 5,000 points for a $50 a Amazon.com or Wal-Mart gift certificate. That makes 60,000 points still worth $600 in Amazon or Walmart gift cards.

Southwest still includes two free checked bags per person. The fees on the other airlines have crept up to $30 per bag, each-way. That adds up.

Our family policy is to not try out a new credit card unless it offers us $500 in total value. Just the free award flights from the points are enough to satisfy that rule, and then you can add on the potential value of the companion tickets.

Card restrictions. All of these Southwest credit cards are subject to “5/24” restrictions, which means that your application will be automatically denied if you have opened 5 or more credit cards in the last 24 months (check your credit reports). Our household strategy is to have one person only apply for Chase 5/24 cards, and the other person applies for everything else. There is also this language on the consumer card:

The product is not available to either (i) current Cardmembers of any Southwest Rapid Rewards® Credit Card, or (ii) previous Cardmembers of any Southwest Rapid Rewards Credit Card who received a new Cardmember bonus within the last 24 months. This does not apply to Cardmembers of the Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Card and Employee Credit Card products.

Basically, you can get one sign-up bonus from a Southwest consumer card once every 24 months. You can also get one sign-up bonus from a Southwest business card once every 24 months.

Extending your Companion Pass with Chase Ultimate Rewards points. If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can transfer Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest points on a 1:1 basis. The idea is is to book an award flight with those Southwest points while you have the Companion Pass, thus doubling the value of your Ultimate Rewards points as well.

Bottom line. Right now, you can earn up to 80,000 Southwest points from qualifying for a single credit card sign-up, which in itself can be redeemed for a lot of free Southwest flights. However, if you can qualify for two (one personal and one business), you can surpass the 110,000 points needed for the Southwest Companion pass, which provides a free companion ticket on every flight bought with cash or points for the rest of 2019 and all of 2020. Finally, Southwest still includes two free checked bags per person on every flight.

Also see: Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers and also the Top 10 Best Business Card Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Chase World of Hyatt Card Review: 50,000 Bonus Points, 10% Back Promotion

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

(Existing or new World of Hyatt or the Hyatt Credit cardholders: Register for this promotion to get 10% back of any Hyatt points you redeem between July 1st and September 2nd, 2019. You must register before July 15th and finish your stay by September 2nd. You can already have your stay booked, which works out great for me because I am already set to redeem over 100,000 points in late July. That’s like finding an extra $100 to $200 in my case.)

Chase has launched a new The World of Hyatt credit card, which replaces their previous Hyatt co-branded card. There is a current sign-up bonus of up to 50,000 Hyatt points. Here are the highlights:

  • Up to total 50,000 points – 25,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Additional 25,000 bonus points after you spend a total of $6,000 on purchases within the first 6 months of account opening.
  • Receive 1 free night every year after your cardmember anniversary at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort.
  • Earn an extra free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort if you spend $15,000 during your cardmember anniversary year.
  • Get automatic World of Hyatt Discoverist status for as long as your account is open and 5 qualifying night credits toward your next tier status every year.
  • Earn 2 qualifying night credits towards your next tier status every time you spend $5,000 on your card.
  • $95 annual fee.

If you’ve gotten a bonus from any Hyatt Card within the last 2 years, please note the following:

The product is not available to either (i) current Cardmembers of any Hyatt Credit Card, or (ii) previous Cardmembers of any Hyatt Credit Card who received a new Cardmember bonus within the last 24 months.

If you have the old Chase Hyatt card, you can call them up and ask for upgrade options.

The 5/24 rule applies to this card. On many Chase cards, there is an unofficial rule that they will automatically deny approval on new credit cards if you have 5 or more new credit cards from any issuer on your credit report within the past 2 years (aka the 5/24 rule). This rule is designed to discourage folks that apply for high numbers of sign-up bonuses. This is applied on a per-person basis, so in our household one applies to Chase while the other applies at other card issuers. The 5/24 rule is now believed to apply to this card.

What can you get with 50,000 Hyatt points? Here are all the Hyatt redemption options, but the most popular options are for free hotel nights, points+cash hotel combinations, or room upgrades. Hyatt allows you the flexibility of combining your points with any other World of Hyatt member to redeem an award.

After the recent Marriott/Starwood merger, I believe that Hyatt points are now the most valuable hotel points on a per-point basis. In general, I would rather convert my Chase Ultimate Rewards points into Hyatt points than any other hotel program.

Below is their points award chart, and here is their award search tool. Free rooms start at 5,000 points. A suite upgrade is 6,000 points.

For example, 50,000 points can get you two free nights at the Category 6 properties like the Hyatt Regency Maui or Grand Hyatt Kauai (25,000 pts/night). You also avoid the resort fees of up to $45 per night with an award redemption. Alternatively, 50,000 points would get you 4 nights at a Category 3 like the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress in Orlando (12,000 pts/night) with some points left over. Finally, you could get 10 nights at 5,000 points per Category 1 night like the Hyatt Place Austin/Round Rock.

If you compare with the cash cost of these hotels, the number varies you are nearly always getting between 1 cent and 2 cents per point value, sometimes more. We are staying at the Grand Hyatt Kauai this summer on Hyatt points from this card, where the cash value is $701 per night when you include all taxes and the $35/night resort fee. That works out to 2.8 cents per Hyatt point.

Annual fee and free anniversary night. This card does have a $95 annual fee, but in exchange you get a Free Night Certificate good at any Category 1-4 hotel or resort. I can easily get $95 of value out of this certificate, so this card is a keeper card for me. Your travel situation may be different.

You can also earn an additional free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel if you spend $15,000 during your cardmember anniversary year. I had to spend $6,000 to reach the sign-up bonus the first year, so I went ahead and reached this hurdle to reach a total of 2 free Cat 1-4 nights + 50,000 points after the first year. I probably won’t go for it in future years, though.

Hyatt points expire after 24 months of inactivity, but earning points via this credit card counts as activity. Chase Ultimate Rewards points also convert to Hyatt points and the transfer counts as activity.

Ongoing rewards structure. I might book my Hyatt nights on this card, but the rest of the rewards aren’t terribly exciting to me.

  • 9 points total per $1 spent at Hyatt – 4 Bonus Points per $1 when you use your card at Hyatt hotels & 5 Base Points per $1 you can earn as a World of Hyatt member.
  • 2 points per $1 spent at restaurants, on airlines tickets purchased directly from the airlines, on local transit and commuting and on fitness club and gym memberships.
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other card purchasesoffer details reference link*

The free Discoverist status from this card gets you a free bottle of water daily, a free upgrade to premium WiFi internet, dedicated check-in area, and a 2pm late checkout upon request at participating locations. You are also eligible for a minor room upgrade within your type booked.

Bottom line. The Chase World of Hyatt card is the newer co-branded Hyatt credit card. As with most of these types of card, the best value is obtained by folks like like to stay at Hyatt properties. There is currently a 50,000 point sign-up bonus, an anniversary free night award, and a $95 annual fee. As long as you use the points up for free Hyatt hotel nights, the total net value of this card in the first year is easily over $500. For the two nights we booked at the Grand Hyatt Kauai, the cash cost would have been $1,400.

I will receive a commission for this card if you sign-up via my link. I have added this offer to my ongoing list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Citi Premier Card Review: 60,000 Points = $750 in Airfare Booked at ThankYou.com, $95 Annual Fee

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

The Citi Premier Card has changed up their sign-up bonus to 60,000 bonus points (worth $750 in airfare booked at ThankYou.com) with a $95 annual fee for the first year (not waived). Here are the highlights:

  • 60,000 bonus ThankYou points after $4,000 in purchases in the first 3 months
  • 3X points on Travel, including Gas Stations
  • 2X points on Dining Out and Entertainment
  • 1X points on All Other Purchases
  • Points Transfer allows you to transfer points to participating airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $95 annual fee.

3X points include both air/hotel/car rental and daily commute items. “Travel” includes hotels, airfare, taxis, car rental, public transportation, parking, cruises, and gas. When combined with the 25% travel premium, makes that equivalent to a 3.75% reward towards travel booked through Citi Travel Center. The double (2X) on restaurants (includes bars and fast food) and entertainment (sporting events) makes that 2.5% towards travel booked through Citi Travel Center.

Bonus details. The current bonus is 60,000 bonus points and $95 annual fee. 60,000 points are redeemable for $750 in airfare on any airline, anytime with no blackout dates when booked through the ThankYou.com travel portal, or $500 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com. The previous offer was 50,000 points and the first year of annual fee waived, so this can be seen as a slight improvement as 10,000 points can be redeem for $125 in airfare vs. the $95 annual fee. If you got a lower bonus recently, it doesn’t hurt to ask Citi to match the current bonus via their secure message system. The worst they could say is no.

Note the following fine print:

Bonus ThankYou® Points are not available if you received a new cardmember bonus for Citi Rewards+SM, Citi ThankYou® Preferred, Citi ThankYou® Premier/Citi PremierSM or Citi Prestige®, or if you have closed any of these accounts, in the past 24 months.

ThankYou.com Travel Center redemption details (60,000 points = $750 in travel). With this card, every 10,000 ThankYou points will get you $125 in airfare, hotel nights, car rentals, and cruises book through the ThankYou.com Travel Center, which in my experience has very similar (if not identical) total price with taxes as compared to Expedia, Orbitz, etc. Because you can book any flight that can be otherwise purchased with cash, there are “no blackout dates”.

This can be even more flexible than traditional “miles” redemptions because you can use it across multiple flights, multiple passengers, and you can even do partial redemptions. Let’s say you found a ticket that want for $200 = 16,000 points, but only have 10,000 points available. Citi now lets you pay the difference, so in this case you can get your $200 ticket for 10,000 points and $75. This makes it easy to use up all of your points at the better travel rate without buying anything extra you don’t need.

60,000 ThankYou points = $600 in gift cards, $600 check towards student loan or mortgage. You can view your redemption options at ThankYou.com. I took a quick look and it takes 10,000 ThankYou (TY) points to redeem for a $100 gift card to retailers like Gap, Banana Republic, Barnes & Noble, Bath and Body Works, Bed Bath & Beyond, Cabelas, CVS Pharmacy, Kohl’s, Land’s End, LL Bean, Sears, Lowe’s, Home Depot, Staples, and Walmart. So with 60,000 TY points, you could get six $100 gift cards from different stores.

For a check mailed to you, it is 8,000 points for $50 (1 points = 0.625 cent). A better conversion ratio comes from a check mailed towards your mortgage payment or student loan (it arrives made out to your lender), which is 7,500 points for $75 (1 points = 1 cent).

Hotel points and airline miles transfer options. Citi ThankYou points are also now available to transfer to certain airline mileage programs on a 1:1 basis including JetBlue, Cathay Pacific, EVA Air, Etihad, Flying Blue by Air France and KLM, Singapore Airlines, and Thai Airways. For example, 60,000 TY points can get you 60,000 Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles. If you know how to redeem these points wisely and like to fly in international business class, you can get a lot of value. For example, Singapore Airlines has some very nice award options and great customer service.

Bottom line. The Citi Premier Card is a premium travel card with a $95 annual fee. Currently, new cardholders can get a sign-up bonus of 60,000 ThankYou points = $750 in airfare on any airline, anytime with no blackout dates when booked through the ThankYou travel center. Minus the $95 annual fee, and the total first year value is roughly $650. Note the restrictions if you’ve had or closed a similar ThankYou card in the last 24 months.

I do not receive a commission for this card. I will be adding this offer to my ongoing list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Hawaiian Airlines World Elite MasterCard Review – 60,000 Bonus Miles + Annual Fee Waiver

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

The Hawaiian Airlines World Elite MasterCard is the official co-branded card with perks like Hawaiian miles for purchases, a free checked bag, and companion ticket discounts. If you like to fly to/from Hawaii, right now there is a limited-time offer of up to 60,000 bonus miles + annual fee waived the first year. Here are the highlights:

  • 60,000 bonus miles after $2,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • One-Time 50% Off Companion Discount for roundtrip coach travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines.
  • $100 annual companion ticket discount each year for roundtrip travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines.
  • Free first checked bag on Hawaiian Airlines flights book with card (primary cardholder only)
  • 3X miles for every $1 spent on purchases made directly from Hawaiian Airlines
  • 2X miles per $1 spent on gas, dining, and grocery store purchases, and 1X mile per $1 spent on every other purchase.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $0 intro annual fee the first year, then $99

ShareMiles. A unique feature of Hawaiian Airlines is that with this card, they allow you to receive Hawaiian miles from other members without a fee. This is handy if your family members have a few miles here and there, as you can now pool them all together to reach an award level.

Domestic award travel discount. These are from their standard award chart to help you value these miles if you don’t have this card:

  • Interisland flights: 7,500 miles one-way (SuperSaver), 10,000 (Saver), and 15,000 (Flex)
  • Hawaii to Mainland US roundtrip in Coach: 40,000 miles roundtrip (SuperSaver), 60,000 (Saver), and 80,000+ (Flex)
  • Hawaii to Mainland US roundtrip in First Class: 80,000 (Saver), and 160,000+ (Flex)

However, if you do have a Hawaiian Airlines card, then you can receive certain discounts:

  • Interisland flights: 8,500 miles one-way (Saver), and 12,500 (Flex)
  • Hawaii to Mainland US roundtrip in Coach: 35,000 miles roundtrip (SuperSaver), 50,000 (Saver), and 60,000+ (Flex)

Value. As you might expect, grabbing a SuperSaver award seat means that you’ll have to book early as there are only a limited amount of such seats available per flight. They often also involve a layover on another island, which adds a few couple hours to your total travel time. Still, a quick search found some flights for 40,000 miles + $11.20 in fees that would have cost $541 with cash, for a value of 1.3 cents per mile. You just can’t be too picky with your flight times.

Bottom line. The Hawaiian Airlines World Elite MasterCard offers a unique set of perks for regular customers of Hawaiian Airlines, including miles for purchases, free checked bags, and companion ticket discounts. Right now, there is a limited-time offer that can get you 60,000 miles with no annual fee during the first year.

I receive a commission for this card. I will be adding this offer to my ongoing list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Review: $700 Towards Any Travel + Annual Fee Waived First Year

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

This offer has expired.

AFB_ARF_card_rRGB_ArrivalPlus_Fee_WE (1)The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard® is a travel rewards card that has just increased their sign-up bonus to 70,000 points (worth $700 towards any travel), and the annual fee is also waived for the first year ($89 annual fee after that). This is the highest total incentive ever for this card. Here are the highlights:

  • Enjoy 70,000 bonus miles after spending $5,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase
  • NEW – Control Your Card – Instantly secure your accounts by locking your cards with Barclays SecurHold™, plus set transaction limits and block certain purchase categories for you or your authorized users. Available only on the Barclays mobile app.
  • Book travel your way—no airline, seat or hotel restrictions—and redeem your miles for travel statement credits
  • Get 5% miles back to use toward your next redemption, every time you redeem
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • International Chip and PIN for use at self-service chip terminals around the world
  • Miles don’t expire as long as your account is open, active and in good standing
  • Annual fee waived for the first year ($89 annual fee after that).

Rewards program details. With this card, you earn 2 miles per $1 spent on all purchases. There are no special categories. These miles (easier to think of them as points, really) are then redeemable towards travel booked from any merchant or retailer classified as Airlines, Travel Agencies & Tour Operators, Hotels, Motels & Resorts, Cruise Lines, Passenger Railways and Car Rental Agencies. You can redeem towards any airline on any date.

To redeem, visit any booking site (Delta.com, AA.com, Southwest.com, Expedia.com, Travelocity.com, Hilton.com, Hotels.com, etc) and buy a ticket with this credit card. You don’t need to use any specific portal. Let’s say you buy an airplane ticket for $250. Then, you visit your Barclaycard account website and you’ll offset your purchase. You’ll redeem 25,000 “miles” and see a $250 statement credit on your statement. I’ve done this multiple times, and it always went smoothly with no issues.

Travel statement credit redemptions start at 10,000 miles for $100 toward a qualifying travel purchase of $100 or more made within the last 120 days. For example, you could use 10,000 points for a $100 credit towards a $200 plane ticket, if you wished.

On top of that, the card gives you a 5% miles rebate when you redeem for any travel. So if you redeemed 50,000 miles, you would get 2,500 back in your account after about a week. Although this is more complicated than just spending less points, you can calculate that getting $500 of value out of 47,500 miles at 2X miles/$ spent works out to 2.11% cash back towards any travel. Everything else (gift cards, merchandise) offers a significantly worse redemption ratio, so I wouldn’t bother.

During the first year, the $89 annual fee is waived. However, in future years it comes back. So I would take the first year and see how you like it. You would have to put over $80,000 in purchases on this card annually in order to get the 0.11% advantage to offset the $89 annual fee (after the 1st-year waiver) when compared to a 2% cash back card. That’s a big number.

Another option is that you are allowed to use 8,900 miles to offset the $89 annual fee. (Minimum increment is 2,500 points for $25 against annual fee.) Finally, you can also ask them to downgrade your card into the “plain” Arrival card with no annual fee (and no 2X miles).

Bottom line. The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard is a travel rewards card that earns double miles on all purchases (even more with the 5% rebate). The sign-up bonus has been raised to 70,000 points – worth $700 in travel statement credits – the highest ever for this card. The $89 annual fee is waived for the first year, but applies in subsequent years. This is a very strong offer as there is a $700 net value over the first year.

Applying for this card can cover a huge chunk of your annual vacation travel budget. I have added this offer to my list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Chase Freedom Card Review: 5% Cash Back on Quarterly Categories + $150 Sign-Up Bonus

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

The Chase Freedom Card is a popular cash back rewards credit card. What makes it unique is the combination having no annual fee and the ability to get 5% Cash Back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter. Here are the highlights:

  • $150 cash bonus after $500 in purchases within your first 3 months.
  • 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate.
  • New 5% categories every 3 months like Gas Stations, Restaurants, and Select Grocery Stores
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers. 3% intro balance transfer fee when you transfer a balance during the first 60 days your account is open, with a minimum of $5.
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit JourneySM
  • No annual fee.

Note the following text regarding the sign-up bonus eligibility:

This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months.

2019 5% Cash Back Category Calendar

From July 1st through September 30th, 2019 you can earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 spent in the following categories:

  • Gas Stations
  • Select Streaming Services including Netflix, Hulu, Sling, Vudu, Fubo TV, Apple Music, SiriusXM, Pandora, and Spotify.

Activate each quarter at ChaseBonus.com, via your online account page, or call the number on the back of the card.  The categories usually include at least one big-spending area, and seem to go with the seasons (home improvement for spring, gas and travel for the summer). This is another “keeper” card for me, as I can keep it around and use it when the bonus categories fit my spending needs.

If you’d rather have “set it and forget it” rewards, compare with the Chase Freedom Unlimited Card, which offers a flat 1.5% cash back on everything (no special 5% categories) and no annual fee.

Synergy with Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve. Technically, you earn Ultimate Rewards points which can also be converted to airline miles or hotel points instead of cash if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

This turns the 5% cash back categories into 5X Ultimate Rewards categories. That’s like earning 5 United miles per dollar spent, or 5 Hyatt points per dollar spent. With the Sapphire Reserve, 5X Ultimate Rewards = 7.5% back towards travel (flights, hotels) booked through the Chase travel portal.

Bottom line. The Chase Freedom Card is a unique cash back rewards card that lets you earn 5% cash back on select categories each quarter. It’s a little extra work to keep track of things, but it allows me to earn hundreds of dollars in extra cash each year without buying extra stuff I don’t need.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card – 50,000 Miles Offer

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

(Updated May 2019: Capital One has added new transfer partners where you can turn their “miles” into real airline miles. The options are somewhat limited, but may be useful for topping off an account to reach an award. Details below.)

The Capital One® Venture® Rewards credit card is their premium travel rewards card with unlimited 2x miles per dollars on all purchases. Right now, there is also a 50,000 miles welcome offer after spending $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. Those 50,000 miles can be redeemed as a $500 credit towards any travel purchase made with the card (any airline, any hotel, no blackout dates). learnmore_green Here are the highlights:

The highlights:

  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles (equal to $500 in travel) once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Plus earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels, through January 2020; learn more at hotels.com/venture.
  • Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.
  • Named ‘The Best Travel Card’ by CNBC, 2018.
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime; no blackout dates. Plus transfer your miles to over 12 leading travel loyalty programs.
  • Miles won’t expire for the life of the account and there’s no limit to how many you can earn.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $95 after that.

What does this all mean? Capital One “miles” can be redeemed directly for a cash statement credit on a 1 mile = $0.01 basis when offsetting any travel purchase made on the card. In other words, 50,000 miles = $500 toward travel. That means you can fly on any airline or stay at any hotel, pay with this card, and then offset that purchase using your miles balance later.

This means that earning 2 miles on on every $1 in purchases essentially makes this a 2% back card when applied towards travel.

New: Miles transfer options. Capital One now allows you to transfer your “miles” into select airline miles programs as well, on a 2:1.5 ratio (ex. 20,000 Capital One miles = 15,000 Air Canada Aeroplan miles) except where indicated. Here are the 15 transfer partners:

  • Aeromexico
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Air France/KLM
  • Alitalia
  • Avianca
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Emirates (2:1)
  • Etihad
  • EVA
  • Finnair
  • Hainan
  • JetBlue TrueBlue (2:1)
  • Qantas
  • Qatar
  • Singapore Airlines Krisflyer (2:1)

The bolded ones are my favorite. I would use these to top off an account to reach a specific award level. If you know how to leverage one of these international airline miles programs, this can be a good option, but it’s still nice to have the worst-case scenario of effectively earning 2% back towards travel.

Bottom line. The combination of a 50,000 one-time bonus and the annual fee waiver for the first year makes this a good time to apply for the Capital One® Venture® Rewards credit card. You’ll also get 2X miles on your purchases, so after you spend your $3,000 within 3 months to get the bonus, you can redeem 50,000 + 6,000 = 56,000 miles for $560 toward travel on any airline or hotel. That could be a nice discount on your next vacation.

Due to the high first-year value, I have added this card to my list of Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Best 0% APR Balance Transfer Credit Cards – May 2019 (Up to 15 Months w/ No Balance Transfer Fee)

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

0aprIf you are paying interest on a credit card balance, your first concern should be paying down that debt. Ignore which card earns the most points or airline miles when you are paying crazy 15%+ interest! If you are ready to pay down that debt, consider transferring your balance to another issuer. Below are the best 0% APR balance transfer offers as of May 2019.

You’ll want the best combination of the longest 0% APR period and the lowest balance transfer fees. For example, if you are paying 20% APR, that’s like paying 1.66% on your balance every month. If you would like to spread out your payments, it may be better to pick a longer term with a modest balance transfer fee. Alternatively, if you are sure you can get it all paid off faster, go for a shorter offer with no balance transfer fee.

1) Amex EveryDay Card from American Express0% Introductory APR for 15 months on both purchases and balance transfers and no balance transfer fee for the first 60 days of opening the account. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR that’s currently 15.24% to 25.24% will apply. Plus, earn 15,000 Membership Rewards points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months. No annual fee.

2) BankAmericard Credit Card0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles on both balance transfers and purchases and no balance transfer fee for the first 60 days your account is open. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR that’s currently 15.24% to 25.24% will apply. No annual fee.

Slate from Chase Card Art 3) Chase Slate Card0% Introductory APR for 15 months on both balance transfers and purchases and no balance transfer fee for the first 60 days of opening the account. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR that’s currently 17.24% to 25.99% will apply. No annual fee.

4) First Tech Fed Choice Rewards Card0% Introductory APR for 12 months on balance transfers and no balance transfer fee on balances transferred during the first 90 days after account opening. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR that’s currently 12.24% to 18.00% will apply. There is also a sign-up bonus, but note that there is not an intro 0% APR offer on purchases. You must be an First Tech Federal Credit Union member to obtain this card, but membership is open to everyone who joins a partner organization for as little as $8. No annual fee.

5) Navy Federal Credit Union Platinum Card0% Introductory APR for 12 months on balance transfers and no balance transfer fee on balances transferred within the first 30 days after account opening. After the intro APR offer ends, a variable APR that’s currently 8.24% and 18.00% will apply. Membership to Navy Federal Credit Union is limited those with a military relationship, but anyone who is the immediate relative of an active military member or veteran can join. No annual fee.

6) Wells Fargo Platinum Visa® Card – 0% intro APR for 18 months on both purchases and balance transfers along with a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. Balance transfers made within 120 days qualify for the intro rate and fee. This is an example of an offer with a fee, but you get a longer 18 months to pay it off and a bigger 120-day window to transfer all your external balances to this card. This card also has a unique cell phone protection feature – get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with this card. No annual fee.

Updated May 2019

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card Review – $300 Bonus + 4% Back at Restaurants

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

Does dining out and take-out describe your daily ritual? Capital One has refocused their Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card with a sign-up bonus, waived first year annual fee, and 4% cash back at restaurants. Here are the highlights:

  • $300 cash bonus after $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • No annual fee for the first year, $95 after that
  • Capital One cardholders get access to premium experiences in dining, entertainment and more.

Capital One says that existing Savor cardholders will be upgraded to the 4% back on dining and other features of the Savor, but will have their annual fee waived indefinitely. No sign-up bonus, though!

Purchase rewards details. Notable about this card is the 4% back on dining and entertainment. 4% is higher than most other rewards cards that offer some sort of boost on restaurant purchases, such as the Costco Anywhere Visa (my review) with 3% on restaurants (amongst other rewards categories), however it does charge an annual fee. Often one of the rotating 5% cash back cards has restaurants as a category.

If you already have one of those cards above, you’d have to spend decent chunk on dining out to justify paying that $95 annual fee after the first year. That $500 first-year bonus will buy a lot of grub, though! Of course, if you do dine out often, you might actually take advantage of their free Concierge service to help you get reservations at high-demand spots.

In case you were curious, the application page provides some direct clarifications on the rewards structure.

What counts as dining?
Purchases at restaurants, cafes, bars, lounges, fast-food chains and bakeries.

What counts as entertainment?
Buying tickets to a movie, play, concert, sporting event, tourist attraction, theme park, aquarium, zoo, dance club, pool hall or bowling alley. Also, making purchases at record store and video rental locations. This excludes non-industry entertainment merchant codes like cable, digital streaming, and subscription services.

What counts as a grocery store?
A supermarket, meat locker, freezer, dairy product store and specialty market. Excludes superstores like Walmart® and Target®.

Statement credits. The rewards on this card are nice and simple. You earn cash, which can be redeemed as a statement credit or a mailed check. There are other options, but none are especially interesting or more valuable than cash.

Credit approval details. This card says it requires “Excellent credit”. Capital One is known to limit you to two consumer Capital One credit cards per person. They are also a bit unusual in that they pull your credit reports from all three major bureaus, instead of just one.

Bottom line. The Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card has a $300 sign-up bonus, waived first year annual fee, and 4% cash back on dining and entertainment. Note the $3,000 of total spending required within 3 months – maybe it’s your turn to put group dinner on your card and have everyone else pay you back to take advantage of that 4% back.

Also see: Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Chase United Explorer Card Review – 40,000 Bonus Miles

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

The United Explorer Card is a co-branded Chase credit card that offers unique perks on United Airlines including free checked bags and expanded economy seat availability when redeeming miles for award flights. Right now, the $95 annual fee is waived during the first year. Here are the highlights:

  • 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
  • Free first checked bag for both you and a companion (a savings of up to $120 per roundtrip) when you use your Card to purchase your ticket.
  • Expanded award availability. Having this card makes it easier to find that saver award economy ticket.
  • Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Fee Credit.
  • Priority boarding + 2 United Club one-time passes every year for your anniversary.
  • 2X miles at restaurants and on hotel stays.
  • 2X miles per on purchases from United.
  • 25% Back on United inflight purchases (Wi-Fi, Food and Drinks).
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Your miles don’t expire as long as your credit card account is open, with no limit to the number of miles you can earn.
  • Use your miles for any seat, any time, on any United flight.
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.

Keep in mind the following terms and conditions:

This product is available to you if you do not have this Card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this Card in the past 24 months.

This card is very focused on making it a better experience to fly on United. Before you board, you might use one of your free United Club lounge passes. You have the first checked bag for free on United flights, both for your and a companion traveling on the same reservation. The fee is usually $30 per person, each way, so quadrupling that is how they get the value of $120 each roundtrip. You also get Priority Boarding, which helps you find space for your carry-on. While onboard, you get 25% back on your inflight purchases of WiFi, food, and drinks.

Expanded award availability. You earn United miles for all your purchases (double miles on restaurants and hotel stays), but then they also make it easier for you to redeem those miles on Saver level tickets with no blackout dates. Expanded award seat availability is another of the top perks from this card, and I’ve found there is actually a significant difference when searching. If you’re constantly trying to find economy tickets for the entire family like me, this is a big deal. Saver Award ticket redemptions start at 12,500 miles one-way within the continental U.S. and Canada.

Another unique feature of this card is that it offers primary coverage on the Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver. On most other consumer cards, this coverage is offered as secondary coverage, meaning it only kicks in after your personal auto insurance has been exhausted.

Bottom line. The United Explorer Card offers great perks for folks that fly United even just once or twice a year. The card provides lounge passes, a free checked bag, priority boarding, and inflight discounts. A key feature for miles hoarders is the special expanded award seat inventory for credit card holders to make it easier to actually redeem those miles for economy saver flights.

Also see: Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

Blue Cash Preferred from American Express Review: 6% Cash Back on Groceries ($6,000/Year), Netflix, HBO Now, Spotify

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. Thank you for your support.

New added features, bigger welcome offer. The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express has been updated with a bigger welcome offer and new 6% and 3% cash back categories. Thankfully, their best feature remains: 6% cash back at US stand-alone supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases. If you spend $65 a week at supermarkets, that alone will earn you over $200 a year in rewards. Here are the updated highlights:

  • $250 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations.
  • 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions. (NEW)
  • 3% Cash Back on transit including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more. (NEW)
  • 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • $95 annual fee.

Basically, AmEx is trying to be trendy and cover things like Netflix, HBO Now, Spotify, and Uber/Lyft. Note that they are removing removing the ability to earn 3% cash back at U.S. department stores benefit on 7/31/2019. This works out well for my spending patterns.

Max out your benefit by buying gift cards at US supermarkets. Every December, I use this card to buy gift cards at a standalone grocery to use up the annual limit and get 6% back. My local Safeway has an entire wall of options, but I usually go with Amazon, Apple iTunes, or Starbucks. You can easily track how much you’ve spent on groceries on your online account. Just go to “Statements & Activity” > Chart logo (Graph and Filter your Transactions), and then click on “Merchandise and Supplies”. Adjust dates as necessary. Screenshot:

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Supermarkets details. “US stand-alone supermarkets” means that superstores, convenience stores and warehouse clubs are not considered supermarkets. This means no Super Wal-Mart, no Super Target, no Costco. Examples of merchants that count (and this is not a complete list!) are Safeway, Whole Foods, Meijer, Vons, Winn-Dixie, Gristedes, Shoprite, Stop and Shop, and online supermarkets such as FreshDirect.

Gasoline details. “US stand-alone gas stations” means that superstores, supermarkets, and warehouse clubs that sell gasoline are not considered gas stations. This means no Target, no Costco, no Sam’s Club. Examples of merchants that count (and this is not a complete list!) are Exxon, Mobil, Hess, Shell, Gulf, Murphy USA, Murphy Express.

US Streaming Subscriptions details. These are all included:

• Amazon Music
• Apple Music
• Audible
• CBS All Access
• Direct TV Now
• ESPN+
• Fubo TV
• HBO Now
• Hulu
• iHeartRadio
• Kindle Unlimited
• MLB.TV
• NBA League Pass
• Netflix
• NHL.TV
• Pandora
• Prime Video Unlimited
• Showtime
• Sling TV
• SiriusXM Streaming and Satellite
• Spotify
• YouTube Music Premium
• YouTube Premium
• YouTube TV

Annual fee. There is a $95 annual fee, so you’ll want to utilize that 6% cash back on groceries to maximize your value. If you spend the max cap of $500 a month at supermarkets, at 6% back that would net you $360 cash back in a year vs. $60 at 1% cash back. Note that simply spending $31 per week at supermarkets at 6% cash back will result in over $95 Reward Dollars per year to cover the annual fee.

If you don’t like the idea of paying an annual fee, the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express offers 3% at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases with no annual fee. It currently offers a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months. You can also learn more about this card and apply online at CardRatings.com.

Cash back is officially given in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit, gift cards, and merchandise. I always just stick with statements credit to directly pay down my monthly bill.

Bottom line. The Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express has the key feature of 6% cash back at US supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year). You can now also get 6% cash back on Netflix/Spotify/HBO Now as well as 3% cash back at US gas stations and transit (Uber/Lyft/train). New cardmembers can get a $250 statement credit after $1,000 in purchases within 3 months.

This has been a “keeper” card for me for many years now. I treat it like one of my 5% cash back cards, except there are no rotating categories or activations to worry about. Supermarket purchases (and gift cards) go on this card all year long. Then in December, I use up the rest of the $6,000 annual spending limit on gift cards for holiday presents. With the new features, I’ll also add it as default payment for any streaming apps and Uber/Lyft.

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. MyMoneyBlog.com is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.