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Best Credit Cards for Restaurants: January 2019

Best Credit Cards for Restaurants: January 2019

*Editorial Note: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

This article was last updated Jan 01, 2019, but some terms and conditions may have changed or are no longer available. For the most accurate and up to date information please consult the terms and conditions found on the issuer website.

Foodies rejoice! Many credit cards provide high rewards rates for dining purchases. Whether you prefer fast food or a sit-down meal, the cards mentioned below can earn you up to 4% cash back on your dining purchases. You can use these cards to earn cash back to cover dining purchases or redeem for restaurant gift cards, among other options.

In this roundup, we recommend the best dining cards that earn you more than 2% cash back or 2 points per dollar spent, since you can easily find a flat-rate card that earns you those rates.

 

4% cash back per dollar spent

Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • 4% Cash Back on dining; 4% Cash Back on entertainment; 2% Cash Back at grocery stores; 1% Cash Back on all other purchases

  • Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus after you spend $3000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening

  • No minimums for redeeming and cash back won't expire for the life of the account

Highlights
  • Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus after you spend $3000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases
  • Receive a monthly statement credit for a Postmates Unlimited monthly membership through Dec. 2019 with the Capital One Savor Card
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Capital One cardholders get access to premium experiences in dining, entertainment and more
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, $95 after that

See additional details for Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card

More Info

The Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card sets the standard for dining rewards cards with 4% cash back on dining; 4% cash back on entertainment; 2% cash back at grocery stores; 1% cash back on all other purchases. There is an annual fee of $0 intro for first year; $95 after that, but spend $2,375 annually on dining purchases — after your first year of account opening — and you’ll recoup the fee in cash back. You earn unlimited rewards and cash back can conveniently be redeemed at any amount.

Read our review of the Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card.

Uber Visa Card

The Uber Visa Card offers the highest rewards rate for dining purchases that we could find for a $0 annual fee card — 4% back on dining, 3% back on hotel and airfare, 2% back for online purchases, and 1% on everything else Rewards you earn can conveniently be redeemed on the go via the app, unlike some other rewards programs. But redeeming points for Uber credits starts at 500 points and all other redemptions start at 2,500 points. Additional benefits of this card include no foreign transaction fees and up to a $50 credit for online subscription services after you spend $5,000 or more on your card per year.

The information related to the Uber Visa Card has been collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

3% cash back or 3 points per dollar spent

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.

  • $300 Annual Travel Credit, Airport Lounge Access, and Flexible Redemption Options

Highlights
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select
  • Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®

See additional details for Chase Sapphire Reserve®

More Info

If you’re an avid foodie and traveler, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® can earn you an effective 4.5 points per dollar spent on dining and travel, which tops all cards on this list. You earn 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees. Points redeemed for travel (airfare, hotels, car rentals) via Chase Ultimate Rewards® receive 50% more value. That brings you to an effective 4.5 points per dollar on dining and travel purchases. The way you redeem points is the catch — if you redeem points for cash back or restaurant gift cards, you won’t receive the 50% more value that comes with the Chase Ultimate Rewards® point redemptions. Beware, this card does have a $450 annual fee, but if you travel and take advantage of the annual $300 travel credit, the annual fee is reduced to an effective $150.

Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve®.

Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card

  • Earn 3X points for eating out & ordering in, 3X points for gas stations, rideshares & transit, 3X points for travel including flights, hotels, homestays and car rentals.

  • 0% for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers

  • 14.74%-27.24% (Variable)*

Highlights
  • Earn 30K bonus points when you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months – that’s a $300 cash redemption value
  • Earn 3X points for eating out and ordering in
  • Earn 3X points for gas stations, rideshares and transit
  • Earn 3X points for travel including flights, hotels, homestays and car rentals
  • Earn 1X points on other purchases
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • 0% Intro APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers (fees apply), then a 14.74%-27.24% variable APR; balance transfers made within 120 days qualify for the intro rate and fee

See additional details for Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card

More Info

The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card is a $0 annual fee card that offers a rewards program tailored to foodies, as well as travelers and frequent drivers. Earn 3X points for eating out and ordering in, 3X points for gas stations, rideshares and transit, and 3X points for travel including flights, hotels, homestays and car rentals. Earn 1X points on other purchases. This card also offers car rental loss and damage insurance, lost or damaged baggage insurance, travel accident insurance, cellphone protection and more. Terms apply.

Read our review of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card.

Capital One® SavorOne℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • 3% Cash Back on dining; 3% Cash Back on entertainment; 2% Cash Back at grocery stores; 1% Cash Back on all other purchases

  • Earn a one-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening

  • No minimums for redeeming and cash back won't expire for the life of the account

Highlights
  • Earn a one-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 15.24% - 25.24% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 15.24% - 25.24% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • No annual fee

See additional details for Capital One® SavorOne℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card

More Info

The Capital One® SavorOne℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card is the $0 annual fee version of the Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card mentioned earlier. You earn a slightly lower cashback rate on dining spending at 3% cash back on dining; 3% cash back on entertainment; 2% cash back at grocery stores; 1% cash back on all other purchases. This card is ideal if you don’t want to pay the annual fee ($0 intro for first year; $95 after that) for the Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card. Cash back can conveniently be redeemed for any amount and you earn unlimited rewards.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

  • 4% on gas, 3% on restaurants & travel, 2% at Costco, 1% everywhere else

  • 0% fee for transactions while traveling abroad

  • $0* annual fee

Highlights
  • Exclusively for Costco Members: Go Big with Cash Back Rewards
  • 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter
  • 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases
  • 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • No annual fee with your paid Costco membership*

See additional details for Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

More Info

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi may have a $0* annual fee, but it does require a Costco membership — currently as low as $60. This card really only makes sense for current or prospective Costco members. If you don’t plan to shop at Costco, it doesn’t make sense to become a member just to earn 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter, 3% on restaurants & travel, 2% at Costco & Costco.com, 1% on all other purchases.

Read our review of the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi.

SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

  • 0% on Purchases for 15 months, then 14.49% - 21.49% Variable*

  • 5% and 3% bonus cash back categories of spending*

  • With Expanded Buying Power you can spend beyond your credit limit*

Highlights
  • Special offer: save on interest with a 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; after that your APR will be a variable rate, currently 14.49% - 21.49%
  • No annual fee
  • Reinvest in your business with automatic cash back in the form of a monthly statement credit. Plus take control by choosing the 3% category that best fits your business
  • Earn 5% cash back on the first $50,000 spent at wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. office supply stores.
  • Earn 3% cash back on the first $50,000 spent in the category of your choice from a list of eight and 1% cash back on other purchases
  • With Expanded Buying Power you can spend beyond your credit limit* to make bigger purchases for your business plus earn cash back on those purchases too
  • *The amount you can spend above your credit limit is not unlimited. It adjusts with your use of the Card, your payment history, credit record, financial resources known to us, and other factors
  • Terms apply
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

More Info

The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express is a good choice for small-business owners who often dine out for work. There is no annual fee to use this card, and employee cards come at no additional cost. You earn 5% cash back on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. office supply stores, 3% cash back on the category of your choice from a list of eight, 1% cash back on other purchases. 5% and 3% apply to the first $50,000 in purchases per calendar year, then 1% applies thereafter. U.S. restaurants are included as one of the eight categories you can select to earn 3% cash back.

Read our review of the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express .

PayPal Extras Mastercard®

The PayPal Extras Mastercard® is a $0 annual fee card that allows you to 3 points per $1 spent on gas and restaurant purchases, 2 points per $1 spent on PayPal and eBay purchases, and 1 point per $1 spent on other purchases. You need a PayPal account to apply for this card, but don’t worry — accounts are free. If you’re an existing PayPal customer, this card conveniently links to your PayPal account and any rewards you earn can be combined with your PayPal balance.

AARP® Credit Card from Chase

Don’t be discouraged by an AARP® card — anyone can apply regardless of age. The AARP® Credit Card from Chase has a $0 annual fee and offers 3% cash back rewards on purchases at restaurants, 3% cash back rewards on purchases at gas stations, 1% cash back rewards on all other purchases. This card doesn’t offer any standout perks beyond the typical card offering. But if you decide to join or renew AARP®, you can redeem points for a membership.

The information related to the AARP® Credit Card from Chase has been collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Sam's Club® Mastercard®

The Sam's Club® Mastercard® has a $0 annual fee but requires you to be a Sam’s Club member to become a cardholder. Membership is currently as low as $45 a year. If you’re a current Sam’s Club member or are considering joining, this card earns 5% cash back on gas (on first $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%), 3% on dining and travel, and 1% on other purchases (maximum of $5,000 in cash back rewards in a calendar year). Otherwise, we don’t recommend becoming a Sam’s Club member just for the dining rewards since you can use one of the other $0 annual fee cards mentioned above that don’t require memberships.

Alternatives: Rotating 5% cashback categories

Credit cards offering 5% cash back in select categories each quarter allow you to maximize cash back. These cards typically offer restaurants for one quarter a year. If you don’t mind the rotating categories and want to earn 5% on different purchases every three months, then a rotating 5% cashback card can be a good fit for you.

Beware that you will need to activate the bonus categories each quarter. Also, keep in mind these cards typically limit the 5% cashback rate to $1,500 in purchases a quarter before the cashback rate drops to 1%. This allows you to earn up to $75 in cash back a quarter at the 5% cashback rate.

Here are two 5% bonus category cards:

  • Get a dollar-for-dollar match of all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically*

  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter up to the quarterly maximum, when you activate*

  • Any amount, any time. Cash back rewards never expire*

Highlights
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Receive FREE Social Security number alerts-Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
  • No annual fee.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Discover it® Cash Back

More Info

  • Earn a $150 Bonus after spending $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.

  • 0% Intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months

  • 17.24 - 25.99% Variable

Highlights
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 17.24-25.99%. Balance transfer fee is 3% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
  • Free credit score, updated weekly with Credit Journey?
  • No annual fee

See additional details for Chase Freedom®

More Info

Tip: Pair a 5% bonus category card with a card that offers 3% or 4% cash back on dining year-round. You use the 5% bonus category card when restaurants are a bonus category, then use the 3% or 4% cashback card for the remaining months.


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