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Best No Annual Fee Credit Cards of 2017

Jennifer Blocker
Updated on: 07/04/2017

The easiest way to get the most value out of the rewards you earn with your credit card is to avoid paying fees and interest. With the plethora of rewards credit cards on the market that do not charge an annual fee, there are more options than ever. However, avoiding interest will be up to you. All credit cards have a grace period of 21 days after a statement is issued to pay your bill. Pay within that timeframe to avoid interest and maximize your rewards. To find the best no annual fee credit card, be sure to consider reward rates and bonuses in conjunction with your spending habits.

Top Rated Credit Cards Without an Annual Fee

To pay or not to pay? That is the question. Although paying an annual fee can get you increased benefits and rewards, no annual fee cards should not be underestimated when it comes to rewards and perks. There is no better way to maximize the value of your rewards than to keep your out-of-pocket costs down. One of the easiest ways to do this is with a no-fee credit card. However, to get the best no annual fee rewards cards you will need good or excellent credit. Even if your credit is good, no-fee cards can be an asset to your credit health.

Discover it® Miles Card
Discover it® Miles Card
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 1.5Miles on Airfare purchases
  • 1.5Miles on Hotels
  • 1.5Miles on Gas
  • 1.5Miles on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Discover it® Miles Rewards
Rating
95
  • Unlimited 1.5x rewards on every purchase offer

    • Unlimited 1.5x rewards on every purchase offer
    • Miles earned are matched at the end of the first year of cardmembership.
    • We will reimburse up to $30 of your in-flight Wi-Fi purchases each year with automatic credits to your statement.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee

Travel Benefits

$30 In-Flight Wi-Fi Access

You will be reimbursed for up to $30 in purchases of wireless internet access on an aircraft per anniversary year. The statement credit will be issued for the purchase amount in U.S. dollars within seven business days.

No Foreign Transaction Fees

The Discover miles card does not charge foreign transaction fees so you can rest easy when you are abroad.

Why should you get this card?

  • Great Earning Potential: You always earn 1.5 miles per dollar spent, which equates to 1.5 percent cash back. Don’t settle for 1 percent! The Discover it Miles card is better.
  • Miles Can be Redeemed for Anything: You don’t have to wait until you have travel coming up to use your miles. Even though the Discover it Miles card earns Miles, it is a cash back card.
  • Miles Doubled for the First Year: At the end of your first year as a card member, Discover will match all of the miles you’ve earned!
  • $30 in Annual Wi-Fi Credits: Next time you have a long flight you can purchase Wi-Fi and have Discover cover the cost up to $30 per year.

Our Expert's Conclusion

The Discover it Miles card is wonderful for two types of people. The first, and most obvious, is for someone looking for a single credit card that’s easy to use and that can do it all. The Discover it Miles card is a great option because it earns 1.5 miles per dollar spent on all purchases and redemptions areone cent per mile toward any purchase. Plus thereare a couple of other nice benefits, like $30 in annual Wi-Fi credits and no foreign transaction fees. As a no-fee card, all of that is essentially free.

The second type of person that the Discover it Miles card is a great option for is someone who is looking to truly maximize rewards. The Discover it is basically a no-brainer for the first year because all miles are doubled , meaning that it effectively earns 3 miles per dollar spent (1.5 when you purchase and 1.5 at the end of the year). After the first year it deserves a spot in the wallet of someone who wants to maximize rewards for purchases not included in the bonus earning categories of their other rewards credit cards.

  • Get unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar you spend on purchases.
  • No annual fee.
  • We'll match all the Miles you've earned at the end of your first year (new cardmembers only). For example, 30,000 Miles turns to 60,000 Miles.
  • No blackout dates. Fly any airline, any time.
  • We will reimburse up to $30 of your in-flight Wi-Fi purchases each year with automatic credits to your statement.
  • Freeze ItSM on/off switch for your account.
  • Keep tabs on your FICO® Score.
  • You can always count on 100% US-based customer service, anytime. We will not waste your time selling you other products when you call us.
  • Your Miles never expire.
Discover it® - Cashback Match™
Discover it® - Cashback Match™
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • %5% in rotating categories each quarter like Gas, Dining, Amazon.com, Wholesale Clubs and more
  • %1% on Travel
  • %1% on Groceries
  • %1% on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Cashback Bonus®
Rating
96
  • Up to 5% cash back offer

    • Discover automatically matches all the cash back you earn dollar for dollar at the end of your first year
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee

Travel Benefits

No Foreign Transaction Fee:

You won’t be hit with any additional fees for using your Discover card while traveling internationally.

Why should you get this card?

  • Cashback Match: After your first year, Discover will double all of the cash back you earned with no cap!
  • Good Earning Potential: The Discover it card earns 5% back on quarterly rotating categories that include things like dining and gas stations, and 1% back on all other purchases.
  • Hassle-Free Redemptions: Your cash back is worth what you think it is, and there are no minimums or category restrictions to your redemptions.
  • No Annual Fee: You’ll never have to pay anything for this card. That means all the rewards you earn are essentially free. How can you beat that?

Our Expert's Conclusion

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.

  • Earn 5% cash back in rotating categories each quarter like gas stations, restaurants, Amazon.com, wholesale clubs and more, up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate.
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Discover automatically matches all the cash back you earn dollar for dollar at the end of your first year.
  • Redeem your rewards for cash in any amount, anytime.
  • Your cash back never expires.
  • $0 Fraud Liability.
  • No foreign transaction fee.
  • Get your FICO® Credit Score for free on monthly statements, on mobile and online.
VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card
VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Capital One®

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 1.25Miles on Travel, Dining and Car Rental
  • 1.25Miles on Gas
  • 1.25Miles on Hotels
  • 1.25Miles on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Venture® Rewards
Rating
93
  • 20,000 bonus miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first 3 months.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • +No cap to the amount of rewards you can earn

Travel Benefits

Travel Upgrades and Savings:

Free upgrades and discounts at select hotels and resorts are part of the Visa Signature card benefits.

Complimentary Concierge Service:

Enjoy free assistance 24-hours a day, even while you’re traveling.

No Foreign Transaction Fee:

Use your card anywhere in the world and never pay additional fees.

Why should you get this card?

  • Great Earning Potential: You’ll get bonus points for every purchase you make. No matter what you buy, you’ll earn 1.25 miles for every dollar spent. Those miles will add up fast.
  • Hassle-Free Redemptions: Miles can be applied to any travel purchases, not just airfare. On top of that, you don’t have to worry about blackout dates or limited award space because you buy the travel you want and then apply miles to the purchase.
  • No Annual Fee: It’s hard to be a rewards card that does not charge an annual fee. Every reward you earn is essentially free!
  • Sign-Up Bonus: For a no-fee card, 20,000 miles is an excellent sign-up bonus. It’s worth $200 in travel. All you have to do is spend $1,000 during the first three months you have the card.

Our Expert's Conclusion

If you’re looking for a no-fee rewards card that offers a solid sign-up bonus and hassle-free redemptions, than the the VentureOne card from Capital One is a great option. You’ll get 20,000 miles worth $200 for spending just $1,000 in 90 days, plus you’ll earn a generous 1.25 miles per dollar for every purchase.

Getting the card is a risk-free proposition because it won’t cost you a penny. Whatever miles you earn with the card are pure profit because there aren’t any fees. You can even use the card while traveling internationally, since there are no foreign transaction fees either.

  • One-time bonus of 20,000 miles—equal to $200 in travel—once you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn unlimited 1.25X miles—that's 1.25 miles for every dollar you spend on purchases. 100 miles is equal to $1 in travel rewards.
  • Use your VentureOne® card to make travel purchases on any website or app—any airline, any hotel, rental cars and more.
  • Annual Fee $0.
  • Once you make a travel purchase with VentureOne, redeem your miles as a statement credit toward the cost. Your rewards don't expire.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • You're covered by $0 Fraud Liability if your card is ever lost or stolen.
  • Get 10% off thousands of hotels on HotelTonight through January 2017.
Barclaycard CashForward™ World Mastercard®
Barclaycard CashForward™ World Mastercard®
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • %1.5% on Travel, Dining and Car Rental
  • %1.5% on Gas
  • %1.5% on Hotels
  • %1.5% on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Barclaycard CashForward™ Rewards
Rating
90
  • $200 cash rewards bonus after you spend $1,000 in the first 90 days
    • 5% cash rewards redemption bonus to use toward your next redemption
  • 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars

Travel Benefits

Foreign Transaction Fee:

3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars.

Why should you get this card?

  • Great Earning Potential: Every purchase you make generates a 1.5% return at any merchant or service provider. Not that many no-fee cards can beat that earning on all transactions.
  • Sign-Up Bonus: Spending just $1,000 on this card in the first 3 days of account opening will earn you a $0bonus, which is excellent for a no-fee card. Most other cards with this earning potential offer a smaller bonus or no bonus at all.
  • No Annual Fee: Holding a card long term increases the average age of your accounts, and not paying for a card makes it easy to keep. Not to mention, earning cashback rewards doesn’t cost a dime.
  • Double Points: Redemptions start at $50 and can be applied toward a statement credit, gift cards or a deposit into a checking or savings bank account.

Our Expert's Conclusion

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.

  • Get a $200 cash rewards bonus after you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days after account opening.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on every purchase.
  • Every time you redeem get a 5% cash rewards redemption bonus to use toward your next redemption.
  • Redeem your cash rewards for a deposit into a U.S. checking or savings account, a statement credit or gift cards.
  • Cash rewards do not expire.
  • Free online FICO® Credit Score.
  • Chip card technology.
  • Mastercard travel assistance services.
Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Capital One®

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • %1.5% on Travel, Dining and Car Rental
  • %1.5% on Gas
  • %1.5% on Hotels
  • %1.5% on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Capital One® Cash Back Rewards
Rating
93
  • $100 bonus once you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • +Rewards don't expire

Travel Benefits

Travel Upgrades and Savings:

With your access to the Luxury Hotels & Resorts program, you can enjoy complimentary room upgrades, early check in and late checkout, subject to availability.

Travel Protection:

Get reimbursed up to $1,500 per trip for non-refundable travel costs if your trip is canceled or ends early.

Wi-Fi:

Only A-List Preferred status members get inflight Wi-Fi at no charge.

Why should you get this card?

  • Great Earning Potential: For every purchase you make you’ll earn 1.5% cash back. It doesn’t get any easier than that!
  • Hassle-Free Redemptions: You can redeem your cashback at any time with no minimums! You’ll either get a statement credit or a check in the mail—whatever works for you.
  • Great Sign-Up Bonus: This card comes with a sign-up bonus of $0 after spending only $500 within the first 3 months. After a few cell phone payments and trips to the grocery store, you’ll have a cool $100 very quickly!
  • No Annual Fee: No matter how you use your card, you won’t pay an annual fee. You don’t have to worry about paying a hefty annual fee and all the rewards are all yours.

Our Expert's Conclusion

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.

  • Earn a one-time bonus of $100 once you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase.
  • Rewards don't expire, and you can redeem your cash back for any amount, anytime.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Fraud coverage.
  • Security Alerts.
  • Extended warranty.
  • Complimentary concierge service.
  • Identity Theft resolution services.
  • Travel upgrades and savings.
  • Travel protection.
  • Price protection.
Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card
Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2xPoints on Dining and Entertainment
  • 1xPoints on Gas
  • 1xPoints on Travel
  • 1xPoints on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
ThankYou®
Rating
91
  • 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 month
  • 3% of each purchase transaction in US dollars

Travel Benefits

Citi Private Pass:

Get special access to tickets to many concerts, sporting events, dining experiences and more, including presale and VIP packages.

Foreign Transaction Fee:

You’ll pay a 3% fee for each transaction not in U.S. dollars.

Wi-Fi:

Only A-List Preferred status members get inflight Wi-Fi at no charge.

Why should you get this card?

  • Great Earning Potential: You’ll get bonus points on all purchases in the dining and entertainment categories. Before you know it, you’ll have a stash of points after a few nights out on the town.
  • No Annual Fees: Earning rewards is fast, easy and costs nothing. They say that nothing in this world is free, except cheese in a mouse trap… and, apparently, ThankYou points.
  • Sign-Up Bonus: For a card with zero annual fees, a sign-up bonus worth $150 is rather generous, and it only requires spending $1,000 in the first three months to earn the points.
  • 0% APR on Balance Transfers and Purchases for 12 months: Although I do not recommend opening a new credit card while carrying debt, it’s nice to have the option to consolidate balances and pay them off within a year with no interest.

Our Expert's Conclusion

If you’re looking for a credit card that has a decent welcome bonus and earns bonus points in multiple categories, then the Citi ThankYou Preferred card is a good option. It’s also a great card for someone who wants to start earning rewards but is intimidated by annual fees.

Applying for this card costs nothing and you won’t pay a dime to keep it year after year. The 15,000- point sign-up bonus is worth $150, so there’s absolutely no risk for the cardholder. And earning additional points means more rewards at no cost.

  • Earn 15,000 bonus points after Making $1,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening.
  • 2x ThankYou® Points per dollar spent on purchases for dining at restaurants and entertainment.
  • 1x ThankYou® Point per $1 spent on other purchases.
  • Points do not expire and earn unlimited ThankYou® Points.
  • Redeem ThankYou Points for almost anything, from a large selection of gift cards including dining, entertainment and retail — to an amazing selection of valuable rewards such as electronics, travel rewards, home goods, books and media, charitable donations or even cash.
  • No annual fee.
Expedia® + Card from Citi
Expedia® + Card from Citi
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 3xPoints on Airfare, Hotels, Activities and Travel
  • 1xPoints on Dining
  • 1xPoints on Gas
  • 1xPoints on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Expedia®+ Rewards
Rating
72
  • 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 month
    • One Elite Qualifying Hotel Night for each increment of $2,500 in purchases between January and December billing statements
  • 3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars

Travel Benefits

Citi Concierge:

Get instant assistance with travel, shopping, dining and entertainment needs.

Elite Status with Expedia+:

Instant Silver status, which includes bonus points for bookings and special perks at select hotels.

Citi Private Pass:

Enjoy special access to thousands of events every year, including presale tickets and VIP packages to concerts, sporting events, dining experiences and more.

Why should you get this card?

  • Expedia+ Silver Status: Earn automatic Silver status with this no annual fee card.
  • Sign-Up Bonus: Earn a 15,000-point sign-up bonus after completing minimum spending requirements. This bonus is worth $200 when redeemed for +VIP Access hotels.
  • Earn Higher Status With Spending: For every $2,500 you spend on your Expedia+ card, you’ll earn one night toward Expedia+ Gold status.

Our Expert's Conclusion

The Expedia+ card is a decent option for someone looking for a simple, no annual fee travel rewards card. But that’s only if you book through Expedia because those are the only purchases that will earn bonus points. All other purchases earn just one point per dollar. The card makes the most sense for someone who makes some or all of their travel bookings with Expedia.

Additionally, since the Expedia+ card offers automatic Silver status and the ability to earn Gold status through spending, you’ll see more benefits from your hotel stays if you have this card. If you never book hotels through Expedia, this benefit will not be helpful to you at all.

  • Earn 15,000 Expedia+ bonus points after $1,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening.
  • Earn 3 Expedia+ bonus points per $1 spent on eligible Expedia purchases including flights, hotels, activities and travel packages.
  • Earn 1 Expedia+ point per $1 spent on other purchases.
  • Earn one Elite Qualifying Hotel Night towards Expedia+ gold status qualification for each increment of $2,500 in purchases made on the card between your January and December billing statements.
  • Expedia+ silver status is complimentary for as long as you are a cardmember.
  • No limit to the number of Expedia+ bonus points you can earn and points won't expire as long as you earn or redeem points every 18 months.
  • Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance.
  • Worldwide Car Rental Insurance.
  • Lost Baggage Protection.
  • Extended Warranty.
  • Damage & Theft Purchase Protection.
  • Citi® Concierge.
  • Citi® Cards with Apple Pay®.
Citi® Double Cash Card
Citi® Double Cash Card
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • %2% on Travel
  • %2% on Dining
  • %2% on Gas
  • %2% on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Citi® Double Cash Reward Program
Rating
94
  • 3% of each purchase transaction in U.S. dollars

Travel Benefits

Companion Pass:

Rapid Rewards members can get Companion Pass when they fly 100 qualifying one-way flights or earn 110,000 qualifying points in a calendar year.

Lounge Access:

Southwest does not provide premium passengers with complimentary lounge access.

Free Checked Bag:

First and second checked bags (saves you up to $120 roundtrip) when you fly Southwest.

Why should you get this card?

  • No Annual Fee: You’ll never have to pay anything for this card. That means all of the rewards you earn are pure bonus!
  • 2% Cash Back on Everything: You don’t need to keep track of specific categories that earn more or less cash back; everything earns 2%!
  • No Caps on Your Earning: Some credit cards that offer higher cash back have a cap on how much you can earn, but not with the Citi Double Cash.
  • Late Fee Pass: If you accidentally miss a payment, Citi has you covered and won’t charge you a late fee–but only once.

Our Expert's Conclusion

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!

  • Earn Cash Back TWICE with 1% on purchases and 1% as you pay for those purchases in full or over time.
  • No caps and no Category restrictions.
  • Credit card late fee pass.
  • Citi® Private Pass®.
  • Citi Price Rewind.
  • 24 Hour fraud protection.
  • The Lost Wallet® Service.
  • Citi® Identity Theft Solutions.
  • EMV Chip Technology.
  • Trip Cancellation & Interruption Protection.
  • Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance.
  • Worldwide Car Rental Insurance.
Premier Dining Rewards From Capital One
Premier Dining Rewards From Capital One
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Capital One®

Bonuses & Rewards
Annual Fee
Rewards Program
Rating
Bonuses & Rewards
  • %3% on Dining
  • %2% on Groceries
  • %1% on Gas
  • %1% on All Other Purchases
Annual Fee
$0
Capital One® Cash Back Rewards
Rating
97
  • $100 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • +Rewards don't expire

Travel Benefits

No Foreign Transaction Fee:

You won’t be hit with any additional fees for using your Discover card while traveling internationally.

Why should you get this card?

  • Great Earning Potential: You’ll earn 0 % back at restaurants, 0 % back at grocery stores and 0 % back for all other purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees: Don’t worry about extra costs adding up when you’re traveling abroad because the Premier Dining Rewards card won’t charge you extra to use your card.
  • Solid Sign-Up Bonus: Earn $0 after spending at least $500 during your first 3 months as a card member.
  • No Minimum Redemption:Most cashback credit cards require a minimum redemption, but not this one! Redeem as much as you want, whenever you are ready.

Our Expert's Conclusion

The Premier Dining Rewards card might be a good option for some people, especially those who eat out often. The ability to earn three percent cash back at restaurants with a no annual fee card is pretty solid. And the fact that it also comes with a decent sign-up bonus makes the deal even sweeter! The card also offers two percent back at grocery stores and one percent back on all other purchases.

The benefit that really puts this cashback card ahead of others is the fact that there is no minimum for your redemptions and you don’t need to redeem for specific purchases. Additionally, no foreign transaction fees are charged on purchases made abroad, which makes this a good card for your wallet while traveling.

  • Earn a one-time bonus of $100 once you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months.
  • 3% cash back on purchases made at dining establishments.
  • 2% cash back at grocery stores.
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Rewards don't expire, and you can redeem your cash back for any amount, anytime.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Fraud coverage.
  • Security Alerts.
  • Extended warranty.
  • Complimentary concierge service.
  • Identity Theft resolution services.
  • Travel upgrades and savings.
  • Travel protection.
  • Price protection.

Compare No Annual Fee Credit Cards

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.

Credit Card
Bonuses & Rewards
First Year Rewards
FEES
RE® value
Discover it® - Cashback Match™

Discover it® - Cashback Match™

Bonuses & Rewards
  • match all the rewards at the end of first year
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$480
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$480
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank

More Details
Discover it® Miles Card

Discover it® Miles Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • match all the rewards at the end of first year
  • 36,000 miles for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$720
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$720
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank

More Details
Hilton Honors™ Card from American Express

Hilton Honors™ Card from American Express

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 50,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 72,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
American Express

More Details
MLB™ Credit Cards

MLB™ Credit Cards

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $150 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

FlexPerks® Select+ American Express® Card

FlexPerks® Select+ American Express® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 FlexPoints® sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 FlexPoints® for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$680
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$680
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
U.S. Bank

Expedia® + Card from Citi

Expedia® + Card from Citi

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 15,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$244
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$244
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

More Details
Premier Dining Rewards From Capital One

Premier Dining Rewards From Capital One

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $100 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$340
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$340
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Capital One®

More Details
Norwegian Cruise Line® World Mastercard®

Norwegian Cruise Line® World Mastercard®

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$453
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$453
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card

Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 15,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

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Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi

Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$240
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$240
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

Club Carlson℠ Rewards Visa® Card

Club Carlson℠ Rewards Visa® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 30,000 Gold Points® sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 Gold Points® for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$205
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$205
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
U.S. Bank

VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 20,000 miles sign-up bonus.
  • 30,000 miles for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$500
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$500
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Capital One®

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Priceline Rewards™ Visa® Card

Priceline Rewards™ Visa® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 5,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$323
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$323
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

NFL Extra Points Credit Card

NFL Extra Points Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$340
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$340
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

Blue Cash® Card from American Express

Blue Cash® Card from American Express

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $120 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$120
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$120
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
American Express

SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card

SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$240
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$240
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
American Express

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$240
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$240
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

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Wyndham Rewards® Visa® Card

Wyndham Rewards® Visa® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 15,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$281
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$281
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

JetBlue® MasterCard®

JetBlue® MasterCard®

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 5,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$487
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$487
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

Amex EveryDay® Credit Card

Amex EveryDay® Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$615
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$615
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
American Express

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Discover it® Chrome Card

Discover it® Chrome Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • match all the rewards at the end of first year
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$480
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$480
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank

Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $100 sign-up bonus.
  • $360 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$460
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$460
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Capital One®

More Details
AARP® Credit Card from Chase

AARP® Credit Card from Chase

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 20,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$440
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$440
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Chase Bank

Carnival™ World MasterCard®

Carnival™ World MasterCard®

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 FunPoints® sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 FunPoints® for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$340
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$340
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® Credit Card

Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$340
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$340
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

Chase Freedom® Card

Chase Freedom® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 15,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Chase Bank

Chase Freedom Unlimited℠

Chase Freedom Unlimited℠

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 15,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 36,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$510
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$510
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Chase Bank

More Details
U.S. Bank Cash 365™ American Express® Card

U.S. Bank Cash 365™ American Express® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $480 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$480
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$480
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
U.S. Bank

BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card

BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $150 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Card

Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 0 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$240
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$240
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Chase Bank

More Details
NHL® Discover it® Card

NHL® Discover it® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • match all the rewards at the end of first year
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$480
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$480
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank

Citi® Double Cash Card

Citi® Double Cash Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $480 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$480
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$480
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

More Details
AT&T Access Card From Citi

AT&T Access Card From Citi

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 10,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$340
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$340
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Citibank

BankAmericard Travel Rewards® Credit Card

BankAmericard Travel Rewards® Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 20,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 36,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$560
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$560
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

Barclaycard CashForward™ World Mastercard®

Barclaycard CashForward™ World Mastercard®

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $200 sign-up bonus.
  • $360 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$560
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$560
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

More Details
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $100 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$340
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$340
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
American Express

Diamond Resorts International® MasterCard®

Diamond Resorts International® MasterCard®

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2,500 Diamond Plus Points™ sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 Diamond Plus Points™ for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$198
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$198
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

Pink Ribbon BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card

Pink Ribbon BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $150 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $0 sign-up bonus.
  • $360 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$360
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$360
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
U.S. Bank

World Wildlife Fund Credit Card

World Wildlife Fund Credit Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • $150 sign-up bonus.
  • $240 for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$390
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$390
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Bank of America

Holland America Line Rewards Visa® Card

Holland America Line Rewards Visa® Card

Bonuses & Rewards
  • 5,000 points sign-up bonus.
  • 24,000 points for everyday spend.
First Year Rewards
$290
FEES
-$0
RE® value
$290
How to Apply

To apply for this offer please contact
Barclaycard

Three Ways No Annual Fee Credit Cards Can Keep Your Credit Healthy

Each facet of your credit habits will help determine your credit score. Although paying your bills on time is a major factor that usually accounts for about 35 percent your score, there are other factors that you may not have considered. For instance, how many accounts you have and how long you’ve had them can make up as much as 25 percent of your overall score. To keep your credit healthy and your score on the rise, consider the benefits of no annual fee credit cards that you may not have thought of before.

  • Way #1: Starting Your Credit Portfolio

    No annual fee cards are imperative to establish yourself in the credit arena. First, get familiar with your spending habits. Credit cards can be a great tool to help track your spending and see where your money is going. This can help you create a budget and prevent you from carrying a balance. If you know you might need to carry a balance, aim for a no annual fee credit card with a promotional 0% interest rate or an ongoing low apr.

    Keeping balances low is especially important if you have not been given a high spending limit. You never want use more than 30 percent of your credit on any card as it will negatively impact credit utilization, which is worth about a third of your credit score. When starting out in the world of credit you will probably find yourself being granted small credit limits. You may get cards with limits as low as $500. In which case, just carrying a balance of $250 can put you at 50 percent credit utilization. Having several no annual fee credit cards can keep your out-of-pocket costs down while extending your overall amount of credit. This will prevent small balances from having a big impact.

  • Way #2: Establishing Revolving Accounts

    Your credit mix is about 10 percent of your credit score. If you are trying to build your revolving accounts you should have several no fee credit cards for a solid foundation. You should have at least 11 accounts, but more than 21 is optimal. However, never apply for too many cards in a short time span. This may make you seem desperate for credit which looks risky to a bank. Also, too many hard inquiries can drop your credit score.

    If you have 22 or more long term revolving accounts, opening or closing some additional accounts won’t have as much of an impact if you have an established credit history then if you are just starting out. These don’t have to all be credit cards. Having several different lenders on your credit report makes you seem like less of a risk.

    Maintaining accounts is as important as opening them. More accounts equals more credit which is better for your debt to credit ratio, especially if you need to carry a balance. If this number goes over 30 percent it can have an unfavorable effect on your credit score.

    For example, if you have 3 cards with a $5,000 limit each, for a total of $15,000, and you have an outstanding balance of $5,000 between the three accounts, you would be at 30 percent debt to credit. But if you closed one of those accounts, the debt would go up to 50 percent of your usable credit, which would have a negative impact on your credit score. Debt to credit ratio is responsible for 30 percent of your score.

  • Way #3: Lengthening Your Credit Age

    Keep accounts open to lengthen your credit history. No annual fee credit cards are ideal for this as keeping them doesn’t cost anything if there is no balance. Credit age accounts for 15 perecent of your credit score. Your credit age should be at least seven years, but more than nine years will help optimize your credit score. This is done as an average, so when you open new accounts it factors in and effectively takes time away from older accounts.

    For instance, if you have a card for 5 years, getting a second card will drop the age of your credit history to 2.5 years. Therefore, it is good to have several revolving accounts on your credit history for a significant period of time before you consider opening and closing new accounts.

    Closing accounts can also shorten your credit age. Be aware that some credit bureaus will remove dormant accounts after a period of time. To prevent creditors from closing an old card account, use it to make a small purchase and pay it off. This way the account doesn’t look unused.

Top 5 Reasons to Pay an Annual Fee for a Credit Card

There can be some clear benefits to getting a card that has an annual fee. For the most part, the higher the annual fee, the better the perks and benefits the card will come with. If you are considering paying an annual fee for a credit card, consider the shape of your overall credit first. Although the perks and benefits usually outweigh the cost, you should be sure to have your credit basics down before you begin to play the advanced game.

  • Reason #1: Big Bonus

    Getting a good sign-up bonus can be one of the biggest draws for credit card seekers. Some are attracted by the numbers, and others are attracted by the potential value. Some bonuses can be large enough for an entire vacation if you know how to use your points and miles to maximize their value.

    When considering a bonus, one of the biggest factors is how much you must spend to get it and in what amount of time. For the most part, the larger the bonus the more you will have to spend to get it. Although there are cards that will reward you just for making your first purchase, in most cases you’ll have to spend from $500 to $2,000 in three months. Sometimes, for a small requirement like $500, they may want you to complete that spending in the first thirty days.

  • Reason #2: Travel Benefits

    Some of the most valuable perks that can make an annual fee worth the cost are the travel benefits. To avid travelers, many of these perks are priceless. Things like preferential treatment, which can prevent you from getting bumped off an overbooked flight or land you in first class even though you only purchased a coach ticket, are invaluable if you travel often.

    You may be wondering why you would continue to pay an annual fee after you already got the sign-up bonus. Well, many of these cards have benefits and bonuses that are awarded annually, like the companion fare that comes with the Alaska Airlines cards. Another example is the IHG Rewards Club Select Credit card. While it has an annual fee of $49, you earn a free night at any IHG property every time you renew the card. That can easily be worth several hundred dollars.

    Many of the best travel rewards credit cards help you to raise your rank within a certain loyalty program. Many of these loyalty programs have different status levels based on a tier system, and you guessed it, the higher your status the better the perks and rewards. This is mostly relevant for co-branded airline and hotel cards. Other travel benefits that make it worth paying an annual fee include free checked bags, lounge access and other types of preferential treatment, like TSA PreCheck.

  • Reason #3: High Reward Rate

    Cards that charge an annual fee can easily outshine no annual fee cards when it comes to the reward rate, which is the amount of points or miles you will earn for the money that you spend. Paying an annual fee on a certain card can even make the rewards you earn on others more valuable.

    For instance, if you pay the annual fee for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you can transfer rewards earned on other Chase cards to the Chase Ultimate Rewards program. The value of a point also increases from 1 to 1.25 cents with the Preferred card if you redeem through the UR travel center. If you have a lot of points to redeem, this can easily significantly up the total value. The Ultimate Rewards site works with many partners, including airlines, hotels and car rental companies, which may be running promotions that can also add to the value of your rewards.

  • Reason #4: Specified Spending

    If you frequent a certain airline or hotel and are looking to get something out of it, carrying their card may help you reach your targeted goals. If the rewards from this card help you meet a targeted goal, such as earning free nights or saving money on baggage fees, paying an annual fee is a no brainer. Not only can you get better rewards on cards with annual fees, but better perks too.

  • Way #5: Protection

    In some cases an annual fee may be worth it for increased protection. Some cards offer increased protection in the forms of insurance, purchase protection or coverage for incidentals like trip cancellation. If you know these increased benefits can save you money or, more importantly, save you from a major headache, the annual fee can be a drop in the bucket.

FAQs

Need more info? Check out our FAQ. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to get in touch with us.

  • The typical return for many rewards cards is between 1% and 2%. That would be 1 to 2 cents awarded per dollar spent. There are some instances where you can earn 5% rewards even with a no annual fee credit card.
    Some cards have rotating categories or run promotions where you can get a higher reward rate on particular items when shopping with one of their partners. A card that gives you 5% back in rewards is like a nickel return per dollar. There are plenty of good rewards to be had with no annual fee credit cards, and yes, that 5% earn isn’t only for the big spenders. It is possible to use a no annual fee credit card to reap these types of returns.
  • There are many great credit cards that do not charge an annual fee. Ultimately it depends what you are looking to get out of the card. Most major banks offer a good rewards card with no annual fee. The card that would be best for you will depend on what you expect to do with your points and where you use your card.
    Chase freedom is a great option because you can earn 5% rewards on rotating categories up to $1,500. Plus you only have to spend $500 in three months to get the sign-up bonus. In addition, if you upgraded to the Chase Sapphire Reserve card, which does charge an annual fee, you could transfer your points to increase their value. You could also redeem them through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel center for even more savings. The Chase Freedom is great on its own, but I love having options.
    Amex and Citi both have great no annual fee cards that earn rewards and receive bonuses. Citi and Amex also both provide the ability to transfer points to travel partners, as well as making purchases directly through their respective online travel portals. More importantly, they also have some of the highest sign-up bonuses in this category. Both of the Hilton Honors cards are great. The Amex version comes with an 80,000-point bonus, and the Citi version offers 75,000 points. These bonuses are awarded in Hilton Honors points, which can be redeemed for hotel stays. If you are not planning on a hotel stay, then you might want to go with the Amex Everyday card or the Citi ThankYou Preferred card. Both have more flexible redemption options and no annual fee.
    Capital One, Discover and Bank of America all also offer good rewards earning credit cards with bonuses and no annual fee. There are also cards that allow you to earn rewards and bonuses that can be redeemed on cruises. If you shop often on Amazon, there is a card for that too. There are many rewards credit cards without annual fees.
  • Yes, there are several cards that you can get if you have bad credit that don’t charge an annual fee. However, interest rates on these cards are usually steep. You can easily avoid an annual fee but be careful because credit cards available for those with bad credit sometimes charge other fees, like a monthly maintenance fee. These are usually not the most well-known cards. I would stick to dealing with cards that are branded by reputable sources, such as familiar banks. Do your research and read the fine print. If your credit is bad I would advise getting a secured card.
    Discover and Capital One both offer good secured credit card options that do not charge an annual fee. They also report to the typical credit bureaus, which is imperative if you are trying to improve your credit score. You can start a Capital One Secured account with as little as a $49 deposit. This is not a fee as it is fully refundable.
    There is also a secured version of the Discover it card that has no annual fee. You will need to deposit at least $200 to open that account, which will in turn give you a $200 line of credit. The great thing about this card is it even lets you earn cash back. That’s right, you’ll get 2% back on up to $1,000 spent at restaurants and gas stations, and 1% on everything else.
    On top of obtaining the card, you should use it and pay it off monthly. This will help build your credit faster than just having the card. At all costs, do not carry a balance on a secured card as the interest rates are high. Plus, carrying a balance will not bode well for your ultimate goal, which is improving your credit.
  • It would depend on what airline you fly most and what your ultimate travel goals are. Several carriers do offer cards with no annual fee, but if you vacation often and want the best travel rewards, sign-up bonuses, perks and benefits, you should consider paying an annual fee. Many cards will waive the fee for the first year.
    Just for a little bit of co-branded airline credit card basics, among the three big domestic legacy carriers, Delta and American Airlines offer no annual fee options, while United does not. Delta offers Amex cards, while American Airlines cards are MasterCards that offered by either Barclay or Citi. The Citi AAdvantage cards are not fee-free, but Barclaycard’s offerings include a no-fee option. United’s Visa cards are offered by Chase.
    But that’s not all. Many newer carriers also offer no-fee cards, including JetBlue and Southwest. Even Korean Air has the SkyBlue SKYPASS Visa card that has no fee. The point is that whether the carrier is small, large, domestic or international, there are many options to choose from while avoiding an annual fee.
    If you use a specific carrier often, it is probably a good idea to have their card. You should even consider an annual fee due to the perks that typically come with those types of cards. However, if you aren’t married to a specific airline and want to keep your redemption options open, a simple Capital One VentureOne might be right for you. For additional options with flexible redemptions, you should consider Chase, Citi or Amex cards which have the possibility to be transfer points to many different airline partners. The best cards for airline miles may not be branded by an airline at all.
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