If hanging around the house isn’t how you typically spend your time, you’ll need a credit card that offers great entertainment benefits. But with all the credit card deals on the market these days, you might be having a hard time choosing the one that’s right for you.
But don’t worry – the Nerds are here to help. Here are the 3 best credit cards to apply for if you enjoy painting the town red:
Best overall: Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card
For earning extra rewards on all your leisure spending, the Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card is the only card you need. With it, you’ll earn 2 ThankYou points per dollar spent on entertainment and dining out and 1 ThankYou point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
Wondering what constitutes “entertainment”? Everything from amusement parks to concert tickets to sports events – no matter what you’re into, you’ll be earning extra rewards with the Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card.
When it comes time to cash in your ThankYou points, you’ll have a wide range of options to choose from. But the Nerds recommend sticking to gift cards and cash equivalents so that you’ll be getting the most bang out of every point.
Also keep in mind that the Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card gives you entrée to Citi Private Pass, a feature that hooks you up with access to exclusive events. This is just one more reason the Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card is one of the best cards out there for your entertainment needs. And since it charges an annual fee of $0, you can rock on without shelling out any extra cash.
Best if you like to hang with friends at bars: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
If meeting pals for happy hour or catching a game at the bar on Saturday afternoon is your favorite form of entertainment, be sure to bring the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card along. With it, you’ll earn 2 points for every dollar spent on travel and dining out and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
Generally, points earned with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card are worth $.01 apiece. But if you cash them in for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, their value goes up by 25% each. This means that, if you choose this redemption option, you’re effectively earning 2.5% on your dining out dollars. (You’ll also have the option to transfer your points to participating frequent traveler programs at a 1:1 ratio when you’re ready to redeem them.)
And remember: Bars are usually coded as restaurants on your credit card statement, so you can expect to be earning sky-high rewards on every beer you buy.
If you enjoy traveling and go overseas frequently, think about packing the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card in your carry-on. It charges no foreign transaction fees.
Looking for a stellar signup bonus? The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card won’t let you down: Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. The card does charge an $0 for the first year, then $95. But most barflies will get enough value out of the rewards rate to justify this expense.
Best if you prefer to entertain at home: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
If you’ve elevated entertaining at home to an art form, you’ll want to keep the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express close at hand. With it, you’ll earn 6% cash back on every dollar spent at U.S. supermarkets, up to $6,000 spent per year (then 1%). You’ll also earn unlimited 3% cash back at gas stations and select department stores, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Because throwing a party usually involves buying a lot of food and drinks, you could end up cashing in big with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express when you prep for your favorite pastime. We can’t think of another card that offers a rewards rate this high for groceries, so taking advantage of it is a smart idea.
To sweeten the deal a bit, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express provides a sign-up bonus: Limited Time Offer: Apply by 5/3/17 – Earn 10% cash back on purchases at U.S. Restaurants in the first 6 months, up to $200 back. Earn $150 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Terms Apply.
The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express does charge an annual fee of $95. But as long as you’re spending big bucks every week at U.S. supermarkets, this cost is likely made up for by the card’s high rewards rate. Party on!
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