Editorial Review

Navy Fed More Rewards Review: Rich Rewards on Everyday Spending

The $0-annual-fee card also offers an unusually big sign-up bonus. But you must join the credit union to get it, and if you travel abroad, the card may not be ideal.

Melissa LambarenaApril 19, 2019

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Our Take

The Bottom Line: If you qualify for membership at Navy Federal Credit Union, this card can earn easy rewards on groceries, gas, dining and transit. For a card that travels well, look elsewhere.

Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card

Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

11.65% - 18.00% Variable APR

Intro APR

Purchase: 0% for 12 mos

Recommended Credit Score

Quick Facts

Annual Fee
$0
Annual Fee
$0
Intro APR
Purchase: 0% for 12 mos

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Qualify with average credit

  • No annual fee

  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons
  • None

Alternate Pick: No membership requirement

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

High rewards on all purchases

This card earns 2% cash back on everything: 1% when you buy and 1% when you pay it back. It has a $0 annual fee, and as a Mastercard, it will have widespread international acceptance.

Read our review

Compare to Other Cards

Annual Fee

$0

Annual Fee

$0

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Regular APR

15.99% - 25.99% Variable APR

Regular APR

15.74% - 25.24% Variable APR

Rates & Fees

Intro APR

0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months

Intro APR

0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days

Intro APR

0% Intro APR* on purchases and balance transfers for 12 billing cycles

Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score

Full Review

It offers a richer-than-normal introductory offer and earns elevated rewards in some of the most popular everyday spending categories, including groceries, gas, transit and dining. The annual fee is $0, and unlike some other rewards cards, it's available to those with only average credit.

Still, you'll have to join the Navy Federal Credit Union to get the card, and not everyone will meet those eligibility requirements. And if you frequently travel abroad, you'll probably need a backup payment method.

Key benefits of the Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card

Annual fee: $0.

Sign-up bonus: 30,000 bonus points (a $300 value) when you spend $3,000 within 90 days of opening your account.

Ongoing rewards:

  • 3 points per $1 spent on groceries, gas, dining and transit.

  • 1 point per $1 spent on everything else.

You can redeem points at 1 cent apiece for things like cash back, gift cards and travel (including airlines, cruises, car rentals, hotels, tours and attractions, events).

APR: 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months, and then the ongoing APR of 11.65% - 18.00% Variable APR.

Foreign transaction fees: None. (Note, however, that American Express isn't as widely accepted internationally as Visa or Mastercard.)

Other benefits:

  • Up to 25% off car rentals, plus car rental loss and damage insurance.

  • Get special savings through AmEx's Global Dining Program.

  • American Express benefits such as extended warranty protection, purchase protection and return protection.

Why you might want the Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card

Bonus rewards on everyday spending: The Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card makes it easy to earn back some value on your purchases whether you're shopping for one or a large family. You get an unlimited 3 points per $1 spent at supermarkets and gas stations; 3 points per $1 spent on dining and transit; and 1 point per $1 spent everywhere else. A card that offers top rewards in all of these everyday spending categories is rare. The transit category makes the card stand out even more by allowing you to earn rewards at tolls, parking garages, rideshare and taxi services, the metro and more. And, there's no limit to the rewards you can earn. Some credit cards that earn rewards in these categories put a cap on the higher rates; this card keeps on giving.

A healthy sign-up offer: The card features a healthy sign-up offer for a $0-annual-fee product: 30,000 bonus points (a $300 value) when you spend $3,000 within 90 days of opening your account. That's more generous than you'll find on many other cards in its class.

Average credit is welcome: With average credit, your pool of options when it comes to rewards cards is typically limited. Some of those options even charge annual fees. The Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card is an exception. It's surprisingly generous with a high rewards rate, introductory incentives and low fees.

Flexible redemption: The card offers a variety of redemption options: cash back and travel, yes, but also merchandise, gift cards, event tickets and more.

Why you might want to go with another card

You can’t qualify for membership: To get this card, you'll have to join the Navy Federal Credit Union. Typically, membership is limited to current or former members of the military, Department of Defense employees, or their qualifying family members. If you don't qualify or if it's just one too many hoops to jump through, remember that general rewards credit cards usually don't require membership with the issuing bank.

You want a break on interest payments: The card doesn't offer a 0% intro APR period on balance transfers. True, there are no balance transfer fees, and the card's ongoing interest is potentially lower than you might find on other cards (depending on your creditworthiness). But the Navy Federal Credit Union® Platinum Credit Card is a better balance transfer option. You get a $0 annual fee, no balance transfer fee and an intro 0% on Balance Transfers for 12 months, and then the ongoing APR of 7.99% - 18.00%, Variable.

Your lifestyle requires a travel-ready card: Even though it doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees, the card isn't the best travel companion. As an American Express, you'll face limited merchant acceptance abroad compared with the Visa and Mastercard networks. If you are in the military or belong to a military family that moves from country to country, you’ll need a backup payment method. The Capital One® SavorOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card runs on the Mastercard network and is an ideal option with no foreign transaction fees. It earns 3% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores, and 1% on all other purchases. It has a $0 annual fee.

Your budget changes from month to month: Perhaps you would benefit from the ability to choose your own rewards categories. The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card earns 3% cash back on a chosen category (from a list of six) and 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases), and an unlimited 1% back on all other purchases. Possible 3% options include gas, dining, online shopping, travel, drugstores, or home improvement/furnishings. It has a $0 annual fee. Or consider the $0-annual-fee U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card. It earns 5% back on the first $2,000 in combined purchases in two categories of your choice from the issuer's approved list; 2% unlimited cash back on an everyday category of your choice (such as gas stations, grocery stores or restaurants); and 1% back on all other purchases.

Is the Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card right for you?

If you can qualify for membership at Navy Federal Credit Union, the Navy Federal Credit Union® More Rewards American Express® Credit Card can reward you handsomely for your everyday purchases.

But if you're looking to pay down debt or for a good travel buddy, consider another option. See how the card stacks up with others by visiting NerdWallet's roundup of the best credit cards to get.

To view rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express, please visit this page.