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NEW: Capital One Cash, a Great No-Fee Cash Back Credit Card

August 23, 2011 Credit Cards
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Aw nerds! It looks like this offer has expired. Please visit NerdWallet’s Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card page for updated info.

Today, Capital One launched the new Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card, which gives a solid 1.5% back on all purchases made. It’s low-maintenance, with a $0 annual fee and no foreign transaction fee. In terms of straight-up rewards rate, it doesn’t fare well against the cash rewards heavyweights. However, its best feature is that in addition to giving rewards, it has one of the longer 0% introductory APR periods out there. We’ll break down the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card’s benefits and compare it to the best cash back credit cards on the market. Read on!

Review:Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

The card gives a flat 1.5% rewards rate on all purchases and comes with a small sign-up bonus to seal the deal: One-time $100 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months.

Your rewards never expire, and you can redeem them via cash, check, statement credit, donation or gift cards. You can also automatically redeem your rewards by saying, for instance, that if you’ve accumulated more than $25 cash back by the third Tuesday of the month, you want a gift card.

It’s a no-frills card, as we’ve said, without the hassle of redemption tiers, spending caps, or enrollment bonus categories. It has a $0 annual fee and no foreign transaction fee, but best of all, it offers 0% intro on purchases for 9 months and 0% intro on balance transfers for 9 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.24% - 23.24% (Variable). Most other balance transfer credit cards don’t give rewards at all.

Cash back credit card showdown

How does the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card fare against our reigning cash back champions?

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card vs. Chase Freedom®

The Chase Freedom® easily has better rewards than the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card: it gives 5% back in rotating bonus categories up to $1,500 in purchases a quarter, plus an unlimited 1% back elsewhere. The Chase Freedom® also has a promotional sign-up bonus: Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. If you’re just looking to maximize rewards, you should probably consider the Chase Freedom®.

Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card vs. Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is one of the most popular cash back credit cards. Like the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card, it’s pretty simple, steering clear of thresholds or spending caps. Its rewards rate is quite high: 6% back on groceries up to $6,000 spent per year (then 1%), 3% on gas and department stores, and 1% elsewhere. It does have an annual fee of $95 ($75 if your application is received by 8/3/16), though, so it doesn’t have quite the simplicity of the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card. If you’re a big suburban spender (ie, you buy gas, groceries and clothes for a family) you’re better off with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, but someone whose spending patterns are more diversified will prefer the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card.

 

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