It’s true: There are credit cards with higher rewards than those offered by the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer and the Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card. But to earn rewards with those cards, you need to use them at certain stores at certain times of the year.
Flat-rate rewards cards can be a better option for people who don’t like to spend time thinking about how to use their credit cards. Both the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer and the Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card offer a great flat rewards rate, low fees and, perhaps best of all, utter simplicity.
Turns out, it’s also fairly simple to choose between them.
Are you a Fidelity Investments customer?
If so, the Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card is the easier option. It pays a flat 2% back on every purchase, with no limits or restrictions, and rewards are automatically deposited into the Fidelity account of your choice.
Here’s an overview of the card’s other features:
- The $0.
- There’s a modest sign-up bonus: None.
- The card doesn’t offer an introductory 0% annual percentage rate. The ongoing APR is 15.99% Variable.
- You’ll pay 3% or $5 to transfer a balance, whichever is greater.
- There’s a 1% foreign transaction fee.
- It requires excellent credit, which generally means a FICO score of 720 or higher.
The Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card is tailor-made for value-conscious Fidelity customers who are too busy to mess around with a complicated rewards structure or fancy features. If you want a straightforward rewards card and you already have an account with Fidelity, this card is a good choice.
Do you pay your balance in full every month?
Here’s a summary of the card’s features:
- The annual fee is $0.
- You won’t earn a sign-up bonus.
- There is an introductory APR offer: 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.99% - 23.99% Variable APR. To take advantage of the offer, you must transfer a balance within the first four months of account opening.
- Balance transfer fees are 3%, with a minimum of $5.
- There’s a 3% foreign transaction fee.
- You can qualify for this card with excellent credit, generally meaning a score above 720.
- Rewards can be redeemed for statement credit, gift cards or direct deposit into your bank account.
A key benefit to this card is that it provides extra motivation for paying off your balance. It also has more flexible redemption options, less stringent credit requirements and a nice, long balance transfer offer.
Which card is better?
What if you’re a Fidelity customer and you pay off your balance in full every month? There are some small but important differences between these cards.
- For international travelers: The Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card charges only 1% on foreign transactions, a third of what the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer charges. If you travel abroad a lot, though, you might want a card that charges no foreign transaction fees.
- For people with good but not great credit: The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer is open to those with excellent credit, generally defined as a score of 720 or higher. The Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card requires excellent credit. Keep in mind, though, that credit score is just one factor considered when you apply. Your income and other factors will matter, too.
- For people with debt to pay off: For a card that pays high rewards, we’re impressed that the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer has such a long introductory 0% APR period for balance transfers. However, if you’re looking for a card primarily to transfer a balance, we’d advise you to look for a card that doesn’t charge a balance transfer fee.
- For people who like flexible rewards redemption: Fidelity wants to keep your money in the family by depositing your rewards directly into a Fidelity account. But Citi is more flexible. If redeeming for statement credit or as a deposit to a checking account is important to you, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer is a better choice.
Really, the differences between these cards are minor. It comes down to how you want your credit card rewards served up and whether you’re already a Fidelity customer. Since the cards have comparable fees and rewards structures, they’re more or less equal for most people’s day-to-day credit card needs.
» MORE: Credit cards with 2% rewards