Credit Cards

What Are the Best Personal Credit Cards to Earning Points While Shopping Amazon and Other Online Stores?

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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


We’re barely two months away from Black Friday, the official start of the holiday shopping season. Many of us will spend money shopping online at Amazon and other retailers during the days leading to Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. A number of great credit cards — many with no annual fee — will earn you bonus points for shopping online and in-person!

Let’s talk about some of the best personal cards to earn travel points/miles or cashback for shopping online!

We’ll discuss credit cards earning more than 1% or 1 point per dollar spent — which is pretty much the standard “bonus” for shopping online with most cards.

Why Are We Talking About This So Early?

Many credit cards come with welcome bonuses (extra cashback, points, etc) that must be earned by spending a certain amount of money during a designated period of time — usually three months. So applying now for a new credit card gives you plenty of time to be approved, receive your card in the mail, and use it for holiday shopping! (And who doesn’t need some extra money after the holiday season?)

Best Personal Cards for Amazon, Online Shopping, and Other Retailers

If you regularly shop certain big box stores (i.e. Best Buy, Nordstrom, Target, etc) you might have one of their co-branded credit cards that give you discounts or money back.

For other stores, though, or if you don’t own a store’s cobranded card, here are some options you’ll want to consider:

Chase Freedom Unlimited Card

The Chase Freedom Unlimited Card has no annual fee and gives you 3% back on all purchases (up to $20,000 in purchases) during the first year you hold the card. So if you get the card now, you’ll have until next fall to enjoy the 3% back (until you reach $20,000).

Chase Freedom Unlimited Cash Back credit card

After the first 12 months or $20,000 spend limit is met, all purchases thereafter made with your Chase Freedom Unlimited Card earn 1.5% cashback.

Capital One Quicksilver Cash 

Capital One’s Quicksilver Cash (learn how to apply) is another no annual fee card and earns an unlimited 1.5% cashback on every eligible purchase.

Capital One Quicksilver Rewards cash rewards credit cardLearn how to apply for this card!

You’ll receive a $150 cash bonus after spending at least $500 in purchases within three months of being approved.

US Bank Cash 365 American Express Card

The no annual fee US Bank Cash 365 American Express Card rewards you unlimited 1.5% cashback on all purchases.

US Bank 365 American Express Card

Plus, you earn a $150 bonus after applying online and spending at least $500 in eligible purchases within 90 days of your account’s opening.

It’s also a nice way to take advantage of “additional” Amex Offers if you have one more other American Express cards.

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card

Last but not least, Wells Fargo has a card similar to the others. Its Cash Wise Visa Card (learn how to apply) offers unlimited 1.5% back on all purchases. Plus, you can receive a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 or more within the first three months after being approved. This, too, has no annual fee.

Quick Analysis

The Chase Freedom Unlimited Card‘s 3% cashback during the first year is great, especially for online shopping. If you reach $20,000 in spend during the first 12 months, you’ll receive $600 back.

However, the other cards will give you $150 bonus after spending only $500 in the first three months. You’ll need to spend ten times that on the Chase Freedom Unlimited Card to earn $150 back. But 3% back for an entire year — especially on a no annual fee card — is pretty tempting, too.

Save money with Amex Offers and cashback portals!
(Photo: ©iStock.com/ceazars)

Save MORE Money with Cashback Portals!

Don’t forget to start your online shopping at a cashback portal such as TopCashback, Rakuten (formerly Ebates), BeFrugal, or DOSH. Those rebates are separate from and stack with credit card promotions (i.e. Amex Offers) and points/cashback earnings.

Rakukten/Ebates and DOSH also have some great instore cashback offers, too.

I made a recent purchase at Best Buy — and received $3 back thanks to the 1% instore cashback offer.

Money back from using the Rakuten/Ebates instore cashback promotion at Best Buy.

A Good Strategy

You likely won’t use these cards for other everyday purchases. They’re good in conjunction with other rewards cards, though — especially because they carry no annual fee.

For example, the Chase Sapphire Reserve offers 3% back on dining and travel — which can be redeemed for 4.5% when booking travel through Chase’s travel portal. The American Express Gold Card (learn more and compare) earns 4% on worldwide dining. Chase Sapphire Preferred‘s 2X on dining and travel are worth 2.5 points on travel through Chase’s portal.

But both Sapphire cards and the Amex Gold earn only 1% back on online shopping. That’s where, say, the Chase Freedom Unlimited Card would be good for your online shopping purchases.

Even though it carries a $95 annual fee (which can easily be recouped), the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express (learn more and compare to other cards) earns 6% back at US supermarkets (up to $6000 spent annually) and on streaming services, 3% at US gas stations and on taxis/rideshare/parking/tolls/trains/buses/etc. So the US Bank Cash 365 American Express Card or Capital One’s Quicksilver Cash (learn how to apply) would better serve you when shopping online.

Questions or Recommendations?

Do you have or particularly like these — or other — cash back cards for shopping online? Please share your thoughts in the Comments section!

–Chris

Cover image: ©iStock.com/BsWei

 

Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

1 Comment

  1. You missed a few biggies including the Citi AT&T Access More card which gets 3x and any of the 2% cash back cards, including the Citi Double Cash card, which now earns 2x Thank You points. You mention personal cards only, but I frequently pick-up Amazon gift cards at Staples/Office Depot with my Chase Ink Cash/Plus card, which gets 5x. You also forgot the Chase Amazon card which gets 5% from Amazon and the Chase Freedom / Discover cards which get 5x/5% on rotating quarters, including Discover for Q4 2019.

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