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9 Excellent Rewards Credit Cards of 2021

A rewards credit card can help you earn cash back, travel rewards, and other perks with everyday purchases. Compare these products from our partners to find the one for you.

NerdWallet's Excellent Rewards Credit Cards of 2021

Excellent for

Categories tailored to your spending

Citi Custom Cash℠ Card
Apply now

on Citibank's application

Citi Custom Cash℠ Card

4.7

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Citibank's application

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

1%-5%

Cashback

Intro offer

$200

Recommended Credit Score
  • Earn $200 in cash back after you spend $750 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. This bonus offer will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back.

  • 0% Intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 15 months. After that, the variable APR will be 13.99% - 23.99%, based on your creditworthiness.

  • Earn 5% cash back on purchases in your top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent, 1% cash back thereafter. Also, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

  • No rotating bonus categories to sign up for – as your spending changes each billing cycle, your earn adjusts automatically when you spend in any of the eligible categories.

  • No Annual Fee

  • Citi will only issue one Citi Custom Cash℠ Card account per person.

Apply Now

on Citibank's application

  • Earn $200 in cash back after you spend $750 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. This bonus offer will be fulfilled as 20,000 ThankYou® Points, which can be redeemed for $200 cash back.

  • 0% Intro APR on balance transfers and purchases for 15 months. After that, the variable APR will be 13.99% - 23.99%, based on your creditworthiness.

  • Earn 5% cash back on purchases in your top eligible spend category each billing cycle, up to the first $500 spent, 1% cash back thereafter. Also, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

  • No rotating bonus categories to sign up for – as your spending changes each billing cycle, your earn adjusts automatically when you spend in any of the eligible categories.

  • No Annual Fee

  • Citi will only issue one Citi Custom Cash℠ Card account per person.

Apply Now

on Citibank's application

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • 5% bonus categories

  • Intro APR Period

Cons

  • Low rate outside bonus categories

  • Requires good/excellent credit

Read full review

Excellent for

Airline Miles and a Large Bonus

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card
Apply now

on Chase's website

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Chase's website

Annual fee

$95

Rewards rate

1x-5x

Points

Intro offer

60,000

Points

Recommended Credit Score
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

  • Enjoy new benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining and 2X points on all other travel purchases, plus more.

  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.

  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories

  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.

  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.

  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.

Apply Now

on Chase's website

Pros

  • New cardholder bonus offer

  • Bonus categories

  • Primary rental car coverage

  • Flexible rewards redemption

  • Transfer partners

Cons

  • Has annual fee

  • Requires good/excellent credit

  • Complicated rewards

Read full review

Excellent for

Cash back — high flat rate + incentives

Wells Fargo Active Cash Card
Apply now

on Wells Fargo's website

Wells Fargo Active Cash℠ Card

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Wells Fargo's website

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

2%

Cashback

Intro offer

$200

Recommended Credit Score
  • New! Earn a $200 cash rewards bonus after spending $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months

  • Earn unlimited 2% cash rewards on purchases

  • 0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and qualifying balance transfers, then a 14.99% to 24.99% variable APR; balance transfers made within 120 days qualify for the intro rate and fee of 3% then a BT fee of up to 5%, min: $5

  • $0 annual fee

  • No category restrictions or sign ups and cash rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open

  • Enjoy a premium collection of benefits at a selection of the world's most intriguing and prestigious hotel properties with Visa Signature Concierge

  • 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 your Wells Fargo Active Cash℠ Card

  • Select “Apply Now” to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions

  • View Rates & Fees
Apply Now

on Wells Fargo's website

Pros

  • High rewards rate

  • No annual fee

  • Intro APR period

Cons

  • No bonus categories

Read full review

Excellent for

Cash-Back Pairing with Chase Sapphire Preferred®

Chase Freedom Unlimited Credit Card
Apply now

on Chase's website

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Chase's website

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

1.5%-5%

Cashback

Intro offer

$200

Recommended Credit Score
  • Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.

  • Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.

  • Earn 5% on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% on dining and drugstores, and 1.5% on all other purchases.

  • No annual fee.

  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases, then a variable APR of 14.99 - 23.74%.

  • No minimum to redeem for cash back. Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open.

Apply Now

on Chase's website

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • Intro APR period

  • High rewards rate

  • No minimum redemption amount

Cons

  • Requires good/excellent credit

Read full review

Excellent for

Everyday Spending

American Express Blue Cash Preferred Credit Card
Apply now

on American Express's website

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on American Express's website

Annual fee

$0 intro for the first year, then $95

Rewards rate

1%-6%

Cashback

Intro offer

$300

Recommended Credit Score
  • Earn a $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.

  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.

  • Buy Now, Pay Later: Enjoy $0 plan fees when you use Plan It® to split up large purchases into monthly installments. Pay $0 plan fees on plans created during the first 12 months after account opening. Plans created after that will have a plan fee up to 1.33% of each purchase amount moved into a plan based on the plan duration, the APR that would otherwise apply to the purchase, and other factors.

  • Low intro APR: 0% for 12 months on purchases from the date of account opening, then a variable rate, 13.99% to 23.99%

  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).

  • 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.

  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more).

  • 1% Cash Back on other purchases.

  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.

  • Terms Apply.

  • View Rates & Fees
Apply Now

on American Express's website

Pros

  • High rewards rate

  • Bonus categories

  • Intro APR period

  • Cash rewards

Cons

  • Has annual fee

  • Requires good/excellent credit

  • Spending caps on bonus rewards

Read full review

Excellent for

Bonus Categories and First Year Cashback Match

Discover it® Cash Back
Apply now

on Discover's website, or call 800-347-0264

Discover it® Cash Back

4.8

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Discover's website, or call 800-347-0264

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

1%-5%

Cashback

Intro offer

Cashback Match

Recommended Credit Score
  • INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.

  • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay using PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate.

  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.

  • Redeem cash back in any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.

  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.

  • #1 Most Trusted Credit Card according to Investor’s Business Daily.

  • No annual fee.

  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.

  • View Rates & Fees
Apply Now

on Discover's website, or call 800-347-0264

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • Intro APR period

  • Bonus categories

  • Cash rewards

Cons

  • Requires good/excellent credit

Read full review

Excellent for

Cash back in multiple categories + cash bonus

Chase Freedom Flex
Apply now

on Chase's website

Chase Freedom Flex℠

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Chase's website

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

1%-5%

Cashback

Intro offer

$200

Recommended Credit Score
  • Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.

  • Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter!

  • Earn 5% on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% on dining and drugstores, and 1% on all other purchases.

  • No annual fee.

  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases, then a variable APR of 14.99 - 23.74%.

  • No minimum to redeem for cash back. Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open.

Apply Now

on Chase's website

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • New cardholder bonus offer

  • Bonus categories

  • Cash rewards

  • Intro APR period

Cons

  • Requires good/excellent credit

  • Complicated rewards

Read full review

Excellent for

Dining and groceries + no annual fee

Capital One® SavorOneSM Cash Rewards Credit Card
Apply now

on Capital One's website

Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Capital One's website

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

1%-8%

Cashback

Intro offer

$200

Recommended Credit Score
  • Earn a one-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening

  • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), plus 1% on all other purchases. Plus, earn 8% cash back on tickets at Vivid Seats through January 2023

  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn

  • 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months; 14.99% - 24.99% variable APR after that

  • No foreign transaction fee

  • No annual fee

Apply Now

on Capital One's website

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • Intro APR period

  • Bonus categories

  • No foreign transaction fees

Cons

  • Requires good/excellent credit

Read full review

Excellent for

Flat-rate cash back: Bonus offer + incentives

Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards Credit Card
Apply now

on Bank of America's website, or call 800-343-3246

Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards credit card

4.9

NerdWallet rating 
Apply now

on Bank of America's website, or call 800-343-3246

Annual fee

$0

Rewards rate

1.5%

Cashback

Intro offer

$200

Recommended Credit Score
  • New Offer! With the new Unlimited Cash Rewards credit card, you can earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every time.

  • No annual fee

  • $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening

  • If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you earn 25%-75% more cash back on every purchase. That means you could earn up to 2.62% cash back on every purchase.

  • No limit to the amount of cash back you can earn and cash rewards don't expire

  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 13.99% - 23.99% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee (min $10) applies to all balance transfers.

  • Contactless Cards - The security of a chip card, with the convenience of a tap

  • This online only offer may not be available if you leave this page or if you visit a Bank of America financial center. You can take advantage of this offer when you apply now.

Apply Now

on Bank of America's website, or call 800-343-3246

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • Intro APR period

  • New cardholder bonus offer

Cons

  • Best rewards limited to certain customers

  • No bonus categories

  • Requires good/excellent credit

Read full review