The bottom line: If you're looking for a simple flat-rate cash-back card and can benefit from cell phone insurance and bonus rewards for digital wallet spending in the first year, this card's a good option. It could also be a good fit if you bank with Wells Fargo and want to keep all your accounts in one place.
Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card
13.99% - 25.99% Variable APR
0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers
Recommended Credit Score
- Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months
- Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases
- Enjoy 1.8% cash rewards on qualified digital wallet purchases, like Apple Pay® or Google Pay™, during the first 12 months from account opening
Pros & Cons
High rewards rate
Intro APR period on Purchases and qualifying Balance Transfers
Offers cell phone protection when bill is paid with card
$25 minimum redemption
Requires good/excellent credit
Alternate Pick: Higher rewards rate
Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
2% cash back on everything
This card gives you 1% cash back when you make a purchase and another 1% when you pay it off. The combined 2% rate is among the highest of any cash-back card. However, this offer does not include a sign-up bonus or a 0% APR period for purchases.
The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card is a solid $0-annual-fee cash-back credit card, offering 1.5% cash back on purchases, an introductory 0% APR period and a decent sign-up bonus.
Unlike similar 1.5% back cards — of which there are many — it offers cell phone protection and a rewards boost for using digital wallets in the first year. That might make it a slightly more valuable choice if you can benefit from these specific extras. The card could also be a good match if you bank with Wells Fargo and want to keep all your accounts in one place. It's not the most valuable offer around, though; other cash-back cards offer higher ongoing rewards rates.
Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card: At a glance
Card type: Cash back.
Annual fee: $0.
1.5% cash back on purchases.
1.8% cash back for qualified digital wallet purchases, including purchases made on Apple Pay® or Google Pay™, in the 12 months after account opening.
You can redeem your rewards for a range of things, including immediate cash back from a Wells Fargo ATM, which is a unique feature among rewards cards. You can also choose direct deposit or check, charity donations, merchandise, gift cards or travel. Cash redemptions for direct deposits to qualifying Wells Fargo accounts or checks must be done in $25 increments; cash redemptions for ATM withdrawals must be done in $20 increments.
Sign-up bonus: Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months.
APR: 0% APR for 15 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 13.99% - 25.99% Variable APR.
Foreign transaction fee: 3%.
Balance transfer fee: 3% for 120 days, then 5%.
Cell phone protection: You get up to $600 of protection (with a $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your cell phone bill with your card.
Benefits of the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card
Flat 1.5% rewards and a boost for digital wallet spending
The flat-rate 1.5% cash-back rewards on the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card make it an appealing choice for making everyday purchases. You don't need to memorize complicated bonus categories, and your rewards won't be capped.
Unlike similar cards, this one also offers 1.8% cash back on qualifying digital wallet spending — which includes Apple Pay® and Google Pay™, for example — in the 12 months after account opening. At the start, the perk makes it slightly more valuable for cardholders who can pay for most of their purchases this way. Also rare among cards like this one: It allows you to redeem points for cold hard cash at an ATM.
A good 0% intro period
The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card gives you an introductory APR of 0% APR for 15 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 13.99% - 25.99% Variable APR. That's a nice introductory 0% APR deal, and it's in line with what other 1.5% cards offer.
A decent sign-up bonus
This card also comes with an easy-to-snag sign-up bonus: Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months. Among 1.5% cards, this offer is also standard. Still, it provides a nice boost in value during the first few months of use.
Up to $600 worth of cell phone protection
When you pay your monthly cell phone bill with the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card, you get up to $600 of protection (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft. That's a relatively uncommon feature on credit cards. If you have a pricey cell phone, it could be reason enough to get this card over a similar cash-back card. Here's how it works.
Drawbacks of the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card
Other cards offer higher rates
Although a rewards rate of 1.5% isn't bad, other cards offer higher rewards.
Take the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer, for example, which offers an impressive 2% cash back: 1% cash back when you buy something and another 1% when you pay it off. The annual fee is $0. While it lacks a sign-up bonus and an introductory 0% APR offer on purchases, it comes with a deal on balance transfers: 0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months, and then the ongoing APR of 13.99% - 23.99% Variable APR.
Relatively inflexible cash redemption options
With the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card, if you want to redeem your rewards for cash — not travel, gift cards or merchandise — you can only do so in increments of $20 or $25:
For Wells Fargo ATM withdrawals, redemptions must be made in increments of $20.
For a check or direct deposit to a qualifying Wells Fargo account, redemptions must be made in increments of $25.
These inflexible redemption rules can essentially hold your cash back hostage until you spend more money. Other cards let you redeem in any amount at any time.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited®, for instance, also offers 1.5% cash back on all purchases and rewards can be redeemed in any amount. (New cardholders also earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases — not including Target or Walmart purchases — on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.) It gives you an introductory APR of 0% intro APR on Purchases for 15 months, and then the ongoing APR of 14.99% - 23.74% Variable APR. There's a sign-up bonus, too: Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
Foreign transaction fees
Like most cash-back cards, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card comes with foreign transaction fees, which tacks on 3% to every purchase made abroad. If you want a 1.5% cash-back card that doesn't do this, the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card is a good option. Aside from 1.5% cash back on all purchases and no foreign transaction fees, it has an introductory APR of 0% APR for 15 months on purchases, and then the ongoing APR of 15.49% - 25.49% Variable APR. It also comes with a sign-up bonus: One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
To read more about potential cash-back credit card alternatives, visit our list of top credit card options.
Should you get the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card?
If you're looking for a simple cash-back card and could benefit from cell phone protection and bonus rewards on digital wallet spending, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card is a good option. It doesn't come with the richest ongoing rewards or most flexible redemption options, but it offers solid value.
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