Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
- $100 sign-up bonus.
- $360 for everyday spend.
If the points and miles game seems confusing and you’re not ready to transfer points and redeem miles, a cashback credit card is a great, straightforward option. Cashback cards are simple. Once you earn enough points, you can redeem them for a check or a statement credit.
With one of these cards you’ll often get a penny back for every dollar you spend on most purchases, which is a 1 percent return. But some cards offer more. A good return rate on a cashback card is 5 percent, which is like getting five cents back per dollar spent. However, you can get as much as 10 percent cash back under the right circumstances and with the right card. Cashback rewards can be extremely lucrative when used systematically. And remember, a penny earned is a penny saved!
Many cashback credit cards reward cardholders with return rates of one to 5 percent. You can increase the rewards you earn by being familiar with your cards. Different credit cards will reward you differently for different types of spending. When comparing cashback credit cards, you should have at least one good everyday card as well as a mix of specialty cards and cards that have rotating category spending bonuses. Having several cashback credit cards can also help you take full advantage of several categories at the same time and give you the most potential to maximize your rewards.
Up to 5% cash back offer
Discover it is a solid credit card that should be in just about everybody’s wallet. The card offers a great five percent return on categories that rotate quarterly, and one percent back on all other purchases. The first year as a cardholder can be really good for your bank account because all the rewards you earn will be doubled by Discover, with no limit!
In addition to being a great everyday earner, the Discover it card doesn’t have an annual fee and doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees if you want to use the card abroad. Redeeming cash back is super simple with no minimum redemption amount and no restrictions about what you can use the cash back for.
The Citi Double Cash mostly makes sense under two circumstances. The first is for someone who is seeking simplicity. Since the Double Cash card doesn’t have rotating or any other type of bonus categories to worry about, all you have to do is swipe, pay off your card and reap the benefits!
The second type of person that the Double Cash makes sense for is someone who has a few other rewards cards that cover popular purchase categories, like groceries, gas and travel, but they’re looking for a card for other purchases that otherwise would not earn a bonus. The Double Cash is a great option for that!
Capital One’s Quicksilver card is a great card for earning cash back. If you want to simplify your wallet and you value cash more than miles and points, this is the card for you. Since you can earn 1.5 percent back on every single purchase you make and never pay an annual fee, you can earn some serious cash on everyday purchases, big ticket items, all types of travel or whatever else you choose.
Again, since this card has no annual fee, there’s little downside to the Quicksilver credit card. Yet, it still comes with the elevated MasterCard World Elite protections. As far as travel cards go, this is not a premium card that helps earn status, free checked bags or lounge access, but if you’re an occasional traveler or prefer to fly economy, this card is still a good bet. The cashback you earn can be used toward travel or any other purchase you make. Flexibility makes this a great card.
The Savor card from Capital One is a decent option for consumers who spend a lot on dining and at grocery stores. The card costs nothing and earns 3 percent cash back at restaurants and 2 percent cash back on groceries. Being awarded $150 after spending $500 in three months makes the card even more appealing.
However, and this applies to all cashback cards, the rewards are limited. Why? Because the points are worth one cent each no matter how you redeem them. There isn’t a way to increase this value by, for instance, booking travel or transferring points to partners.
The Barclaycard CashForward World MasterCard is a solid option for someone who’s not too invested in travel rewards and is looking for a no-fuss cashback credit card. You’ll earn $200 just for spending $1,000 in the first 90 days and continue to earn 1.5 points on all purchases, no matter the purchase category or time of year.
This is also a good option for those who cannot qualify for a Chase card because they’ve opened five or more credit cards in the last 24 months. If you fall into that camp, the competitive Chase Freedom Unlimited card is out of reach.
Like to shop at Costco? Then this is definitely a card you should keep in your wallet. Not only do you earn 2 percent back on every Costco purchase, but you can earn cash back for gas, dining out, travel and more. And since there’s no annual fee, all the rewards you earn are yours. You may not want this to be your only card, though, because you will incur foreign transaction fees if you use it outside the United States or if you make purchases in non-U.S. dollars.
If you don’t live near a Costco, you can still use this card for online purchases (assuming you’re a member), but you may not get as much value as those who can get to a nearby store. Also, if you like to have more flexibility with your rewards, this may not be the card for you. And if travel rewards are what you seek, the Costco Visa should not be your first choice.
Compare all credit cards by RE® Value, which is an estimate of how much you will earn during first year of credit card use minus annual fees.
Using different cards for different purposes can help you get the most out of your credit cards. Below are some things to consider when you make your game plan to reach the highest reward rates on your credit cards. Remember, you don’t have to choose just one card or stick with a card forever. It is healthy for your credit score to have at least 11 open rotating lines of credit. Also, the more cards you have, the higher your credit limit, which will help with for your credit utilization and debt-to-credit ratio, ultimately improving your credit score. However, I don’t advise applying for more than one card at a time, and you should be sure to meet any minimum spending requirements needed to earn the sign-up bonus before obtaining your next card.
A good everyday card is one that earns more than 1 percent return on all purchases. When making smaller purchases that don’t fall into a specific bonus category with a higher return, you’ll want to use your everyday card. Savvy rewards earners use their credit cards for everything, no matter how big or small.
Many cashback cards offer just 1 percent on all purchases, but you don’t have to settle for that. When looking for a cashback card to use for everyday spending, you will want one that awards the most on all purchases. The Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card from Capital One is a good example of an everyday card. Instead of offering the usual 1 percent back on purchases, this card offers an unlimited 1.5 percent back. In addition, Quicksilver cardholders also receive a one-time bonus of $100 if they spend $500 within the first three months.
These are cards that focus on specific types of purchases and consistently give you a high reward rate for certain bonus categories. A good specialty card typically offers at least 2 percent cash back in two or more shopping categories. These cards usually offer larger cash back bonuses on select qualifying purchases, even when compared to good everyday cards.
An example of a good cashback specialty card is the Premier Dining Rewards From Capital One. This card allows you to earn unlimited 3 percent cash back on dining, as well as 2 percent cash back on groceries and 1 percent on all other purchases.
When comparing cards, be sure to consider your spending habits. Depending on the card, you can earn bonus rewards for a variety of different purchases, including things like gas, travel, groceries, entertainment and much more. If you want to maximize your cashback rewards, it’s a good idea to have a couple of these specialty cards in addition to your everyday card.
Some cashback credit cards have bonuses for rotating categories of purchases. These types of cards have large cashback bonuses for certain types of purchases, which change periodically throughout the year. It may be in your best interest to have several of these cards so you can switch between them as the bonus categories change.
For example, the Discover it® - Cashback Match™ card offers 5 percent cash back in rotating categories every quarter. Some of these include purchases made from Amazon, gas stations, restaurants and wholesale clubs. Credit cards that award spending bonuses in rotating categories are great due to the large quarterly rewards you can earn.
Many of the best cashback cards offer a sign-up bonus. These sign-up bonuses give you a significant cashback bonus when you spend a certain amount on that card within an allotted period of time. Additionally, one-time offers are bonuses that you will only receive once, they will not be ongoing or on an annual basis, but they can definitely put some quick cash, back in your pocket.
Good examples of a cashback cards that come with both a sign-up bonus and a one-time offer include the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express and the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. You can get up to $350 cash back with these cards. By spending $1,000 within your first three months of having one of them, you can earn up to $150 cash back as a welcome bonus, depending on which card you have. Both of these cards include a one-time offer which allows you to get 10 percent cash back at restaurants within the first six months of having the card, for a total return of up to $200.
One of the best ways to consistently earn rewards with your cashback credit cards is by using them to pay all your monthly bills and living expenses. Almost any bill can be paid online with a credit card, meaning that you can use a credit card to pay for a lot more than just your phone bill. A few examples of monthly bills that should be paid for with your cashback card include cable, internet, phone, insurance and utilities like gas, water and electricity. Also, any other recurring monthly expenses, such as subscription services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, should be attached to your credit card.
You can also use your credit card to pay things you may not have considered before, like your car payments and insurance. There are even third party services available that allow people to pay their rent or mortgage with their credit card. You can also pay your taxes with your card, including property and income taxes. Some payment services charge a flat fee, while others take a percentage of the total payment. If there is a third-party service you are using to make a payment, consider any fees related with the service and make sure the rewards outweigh the cost.
In addition to monthly bills that you can pay with your credit card, there are also a great deal of regular living expenses that you cover with your cashback card, like food, clothing, health care and hygiene products. There is almost no limit to the type of monthly bills or living expenses that you can charge to your card and the rewards you can earn.
A fast way to boost your cashback rewards is to use your card for all your large purchases. Even at the lowest cashback rates, large purchases will allow you to earn a great deal of rewards in one transaction. I also want to caution anyone against using special financing or store credit cards that advertise special financing for large purchases. Many times, when you see a card or a promotion that is labeled as interest free or special financing, it is usually referring to deferred interest. This means that if you do not pay your balance in full by the end of the interest-free period, you can get slapped with interest dating back to the original date of purchase. This can cause you to get hit with a lump sum interest payment. It is much better to use your cashback credit card and get a lump sum of rewards instead.
Your cards will be most lucrative if you can keep track of spending bonuses and rewards. Whether you use a high-tech approach like an app or a website, or an old-school method like labeling your cards or creating a cheat sheet, you should be familiar with the best card to use for each purchase you make.
There are many options to help you create and learn a strategy for your credit card spending. You can create a spreadsheet or just write a list. There are plenty of internet tools and apps to help as well. You will find that doing this will ultimately be a great reference and help you differentiate and use credit cards to the best of their ability. Eventually you won’t have to even think twice about it.
Some cards put limits on category spending. For example, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi allows you to earn 4 percent cash back on gas, but only up to $7,000 a year. When you max out your rewards on one card, turn to another one. Don’t spend on a card if you are not earning the bonus anymore.
Double dipping is when you use a loyalty program in conjunction with a rewards credit card. Many stores, airlines and hotels offer loyalty programs that allow you to earn rewards just for being a member. Why not earn double rewards by joining the loyalty program and paying with a rewards card?
For the most part I avoid specific store credit cards. They have notoriously high interest rates and, in many cases, you can get the rewards without the credit card. By joining their loyalty program and paying with a cashback credit card you can get rewarded on both sides.
Cashback business credit cards can be another avenue to increase your rewards rate for bonus spending categories. You don’t need a storefront or a corporation to get one. If you have a side business, like buying and selling stuff on ebay or renting a room on Airbnb, you can get a small business card. No matter how small your side hustle is, you can qualify, which can help you increase your rewards rates in the realm of things like office supplies and internet services.