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Best Credit Cards for Transit

Best Credit Cards for Transit

*Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It 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 Dec 26, 2019. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

There are gas rewards credit cards for commuters and there are travel rewards credit cards for those who like to explore. But what if you’re more interested in earning rewards for spending on public transportation and rideshares? Fear not — there are cards that match better with your lifestyle, too.

We’ve compiled a list of the best credit cards that earn rewards on transit expenses. We chose cards with strong rewards rates, broad transit and/or travel categories, and either with no or low annual fees. Here are our recommendations.

In this article:

Best overall transit credit card: Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card

The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card is our top choice, offering a generous rewards rate for purchases in a wide variety of categories. Earn 3X points on eating out, ordering in and popular streaming services, 3X points on gas stations, rideshares and transit, and 3X points on travel including flights, hotels, homestays and car rentals. Earn 1X points on other purchases. And you can get all this for an annual fee of $0.

So what types of purchases are eligible for 3X? Here’s the list:

  • Passenger railway
  • Taxis and limousines
  • Ferries
  • Toll bridges and highways
  • Parking lots and garages
  • Airlines
  • Hotels, motels and timeshares
  • Vehicle/auto rental
  • Cruise lines, travel agencies, and discount travel sites
  • Campgrounds
  • Bars, restaurants, and fast food
  • Gas stations and automated fuel dispensers

Points are worth 1 cent each when redeemed for cash back or travel, which means you’re effectively putting 3% back in your pocket on 3X-eligible purchases.

There’s a welcome offer, too: Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $200 cash redemption value.

Best transit card with no annual fee: Navy Federal More Rewards American Express® Card

The Navy Federal More Rewards American Express® Card is another $0 annual fee card with strong rewards in a variety of categories. Earn 3X points at supermarkets, gas and transit, 3X points at restaurants, and 1X point on everything else.

The transit category includes:

  • Railways
  • Ferries/water trip
  • Taxis and limousines
  • Bus lines, charters and tour buses
  • Tolls and road/bridge fees
  • Parking

There’s one catch with this card. You have to be eligible to join Navy Federal Credit Union. Membership is open to the following applicants:

  • Active duty military members
  • Veterans, retirees and annuitants
  • Family and household of military members
  • Department of Defense civilians

Best card for transit and travel: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • 80,000 bonus points

  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants, eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases worldwide.

  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.

Highlights
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide, eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.

See additional details for Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

More Info

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of our favorite mid-range travel cards. With a $95 annual fee, it’s not as expensive to carry as more premium travel cards such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve® (with a $550 annual fee), but it still packs a lot of value into its rewards structure and travel perks.

Earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants, eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases worldwide.. The travel category includes the following purchases:

  • Operators of passenger trains
  • Buses
  • Taxis and limousines
  • Ferries
  • Toll bridges and highways
  • Parking lots and garages
  • Airlines
  • Hotels, motels and timeshares
  • Car rental agencies
  • Cruise lines, travel agencies and discount travel sites
  • Campgrounds

When redeeming rewards, you can get 25% more value when redeeming points for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal. You can also transfer points at a 1:1 value to 10 airline travel partners and three hotel partners. Finally, for travel perks, this card offers trip cancellation/interruption insurance, baggage delay insurance, trip delay reimbursement and more.

And if you can meet the spending requirement, there’s a very valuable sign-up bonus: Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Best for transit and supermarkets: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

  • $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.*

  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%). 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions and 1% Cash Back on other purchases.

  • 1% back on other purchases*

Highlights
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn a $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months. Offer Expires 12/10/2020
  • Limited Time Offer: $0 introductory annual fee for one year, then $95. Offer Expires 12/10/2020
  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more).
  • 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • Plan It® gives the option to select purchases of $100 or more to split up into monthly payments with a fixed fee and no interest.
  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

More Info

Come for the generous cashback rate on U.S. supermarket purchases, stay for the transit rewards. With the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, you can earn 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%). 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions and 1% Cash Back on other purchases.

Purchases eligible for the transit category include:

  • Trains
  • Taxis and ride-sharing services
  • Ferries
  • Tolls
  • Parking
  • Buses
  • Subways

The card’s annual fee is $0 introductory annual fee for one year, then $95. There’s a good welcome offer, too: earn a $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card within the first 6 months.

To see rates & fees for Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express please click here.

Best card for Uber: Uber Visa Card

If catching a rideshare is your go-to mode of transportation, and if you turn to Uber Eats to satisfy your food cravings, you’ll like the Uber Visa Card. Plus, if you live in a city where JUMP electric bikes and scooters are available, you can rack up rewards for using those, too. With the Uber Visa Card, you’ll earn 5% back in Uber Cash on Uber rides, Uber Eats, and JUMP, 3% in Uber Cash on restaurants, bars, hotels, and airfare, and 1% back in Uber Cash on all other purchases. The card’s annual fee is $0.

The sign-up bonus should be easy to earn if you’re putting the bulk of your spending on this card: Earn $100 in Uber Cash after spending $500 on purchases in the first 90 days from account opening.

The bottom line

Whether you take the bus on your way to work, use Uber to get home after a night out with friends or if you prefer to travel by train, there’s a credit card that can reward your transit habits. And if you go with one of the cards on this list, you can get rewarded for other purchases (such as dining out at a restaurant or going to see a concert) as well.


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