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Best Flat-Rate Cashback and Rewards Cards – December 2020

Best Flat-Rate Cashback and Rewards Cards – December 2020

*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 Nov 30, 2020. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

If you don’t want to deal with a cashback card that has rotating cashback categories, or have to keep track of which specific categories earn higher rewards such as supermarket or gas station spending, a flat-rate cashback credit card can make your life easier.

Based on our research of cards available through CompareCards, as well as top cards offered by major issuers, we’ve selected 14 of the best flat-rate credit cards that offer from 1.5% cash back per $1 spent (or 1.5 points or miles per $1 spent) to 2.5% cash back.

Of the credit cards on this list, 10 are consumer cards, while four are small business cards.

Best 2.5% cashback credit card

Alliant Cashback Visa® Signature Credit Card

Rewards: Earn . This is the highest cashback rate we could find on any flat-rate credit card.

Sign-up bonus: No bonus.

Annual fee: $99, waived the first year.

Other benefits: This card comes with a bunch of benefits that can come in handy when you travel, including roadside assistance, auto rental collision damage waiver and travel accident coverage. There are also select Visa Signature® benefits such as travel accident insurance and concierge services. Note that this is a credit union card, so you’ll have to join Alliant Credit Union. If you don’t meet the standard membership requirements, there is an option to join Alliant’s partner charity (Alliant will contribute the required $5 on your behalf) to become eligible.

Read our review of the Alliant Cashback Visa® Signature Credit Card.

Best 2% cashback credit cards

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Rewards: Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases. There’s no limit on how much cash back you can earn and you can redeem your cash back as a statement credit, by direct deposit or check or convert it to Citi ThankYou® points.

Sign-up bonus: No bonus.

Annual fee: $0

Other card details: This card is a good choice for people looking to get out of debt. There’s an intro 0% for 18 months on balance transfers. After, a 13.99% – 23.99% (variable) APR applies. That is a great length of time for you to pay off transferred debt. The balance transfer fee is 3% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.

Read our review of the Citi® Double Cash Card .

Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card

Rewards: Unlimited 2% cash back on everyday purchases.

Sign-up bonus: Receive 10,000 Bonus Points—which equals $100 cash back, when deposited into an eligible Fidelity account—after you make at least $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: This card offers Visa Signature® benefits that include a dedicated concierge available to assist with a variety of requests, from booking travel to buying concert tickets. There are also special shopping and travel benefits that may include discounts at select merchants and best available rate guarantee at hotels.

Read our review of the Fidelity® Rewards Visa Signature® Card

PayPal Cashback Mastercard®

Rewards: Earn 2% cash back on every purchase.

Sign-up bonus: No bonus.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: The PayPal Cashback Mastercard® comes with Mastercard benefits such as ID Theft Protection, which offers an online monitoring dashboard you can activate and a team of identity theft resolution specialists you can call 24/7.

Capital One Spark Cash for Business

Rewards: Earn 2% cash back for your business on every purchase, everywhere.

Sign-up bonus: Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

Annual fee: $0 intro for first year; $95 after that.

Other benefits: This card offers year-end spending summaries, purchase records that can be downloaded in multiple formats (including Quicken, QuickBooks and Excel) and Visa Business Benefits such as auto rental damage waiver and purchase security and extended protection.

Read our review of the Capital One Spark Cash for Business.

Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business

Rewards: Earn 2 miles per $1 on every purchase, everywhere.

Sign-up bonus: Earn a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles – equal to $500 in travel – once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.

Annual fee: $0 intro for first year; $95 after that.

Other benefits: Earn 5X miles per $1 spent when booking hotels and car rentals through Capital One Travel. Plus, receive one statement credit for either the $85 TSA Pre✓® application fee or the $100 Global Entry application fee when you use your Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business.

Best 1.5% cashback and rewards cards

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase, every day

  • 0% intro on purchases for 15 months, then 15.49% - 25.49% (Variable)

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

Highlights
  • One-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • 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; 15.49%-25.49% variable APR after that
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees

See additional details for Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

More Info

Rewards: Earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day.

Sign-up bonus: There’s a one-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: Benefits include extended warranty protection, travel accident insurance and a foreign transaction fee of none.

Read our review of the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

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  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months on purchases

  • Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. And earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

  • 14.99% - 23.74% Variable

Highlights
  • Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5% on travel purchased through Chase, 3% on dining at restaurants and drugstores, and 1.5% on all other purchases.
  • No annual fee
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases, then a variable APR of 14.99 - 23.74%.
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back. Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open

See additional details for Chase Freedom Unlimited®

More Info

Sign-up bonus: Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. And earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

Rewards: Earn 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase, 3% on dining and drugstores, and 1.5% on all other purchases. And if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve®, you can transfer rewards earned on the Chase Freedom Unlimited® to your Sapphire card, then redeem for extra value for travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: Earn 5% cash back on Lyft rides through March 2022. And get a complimentary membership in DashPass for three months — a service from DoorDash that provides unlimited deliveries for a $0 delivery fee on orders over $12. Note that after your complimentary membership ends, you’ll be automatically enrolled in DashPass at 50% off for the next nine months. Activate the benefit by Dec. 31, 2021.

Discover it® Miles

  • Discover will match ALL the Miles you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. That's $700 towards travel!

  • Unlimited 1.5 Miles for every dollar spent on all purchases - with no annual fee

  • 0% intro for 14 months on purchases, then 11.99% - 22.99% Variable

Highlights
  • UNLIMITED BONUS: Only Discover will automatically match all the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles.  There’s no signing up, no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a Miles-for-Miles match.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5x Miles for every dollar spent on all purchases - with no annual fee.
  • Turn Miles into cash in any amount, any time. Or redeem as a statement credit for travel purchases like airfare, hotels, rideshares, gas stations, restaurants and more with no blackout dates. However you redeem, Miles keep the same value. And Miles never expire.
  • No Blackout Dates. Simply pay for travel purchases like airlines, hotels, rental cars, and more with your Discover it® Miles card.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
  • Freeze your account in seconds with an on/off switch either on the mobile app or website to prevent new purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers.
  • Get your free Credit Scorecard with your FICO® Credit Score, number of recent inquiries and more.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Discover it® Miles

More Info

Rewards: Earn unlimited 1.5 miles for every dollar spent on all purchases - with no annual fee.

Sign-up bonus: For new cardmembers, Discover will match ALL the Miles you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. That's $700 towards travel!

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: The Discover it® Miles offers benefits including alerts if your Social Security number is found on the Dark Web (you must sign up), free access to your FICO® Score and the ability to freeze and unfreeze your card in case you misplace it.

American Express Cash Magnet® Card – $150 Welcome Offer

  • Earn up to $150 back

  • Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on your purchases

  • Reward Dollars can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise

Highlights
  • Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on your purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases from the date of account opening, then a variable rate, currently 13.99% to 23.99%.
  • 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.
  • Amex Offers rewards you at places you like to shop, dine, travel, and more. You can add as many Offers as you’d like to your Card, then just use that Card to pay, and enjoy rewards directly on your statement.
  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for American Express Cash Magnet® Card – $150 Welcome Offer

More Info

Rewards: Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on your purchases.

Welcome offer: $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: Benefits include car rental loss and damage insurance, free two-day shipping when you shop online with ShopRunner and special access to events such as concerts, Broadway shows and sporting events.

To see rates & fees for American Express Cash Magnet® Card – $150 Welcome Offer please click here.

Read our review of the American Express Cash Magnet® Card – $150 Welcome Offer

USAA® Preferred Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card

Rewards: Earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase with no limits or category restrictions.

Sign-up bonus: None

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: When you enter active military duty, get a special 4% APR on any existing balances. That’s better than the 6% APR required by the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. Note that you must be a USAA member in order to apply for this card.

Read our review of the USAA® Preferred Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card

PenFed Power Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card

Rewards: .

Sign-up bonus: You can earn a .

Annual fee: $0

Other card details: The PenFed Power Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card’s regular purchase APR is . If you qualify for the lower end of that range, that’s a low interest rate compared with many competing cashback cards, and has the potential to save you money if you need to roll over a balance once in awhile. While you can apply without being a Pentagon Federal Credit Union member, you’ll need to join, open a Savings/Share Account and deposit at least $5 before you can get the credit card.

Capital One Spark Cash Select for Business

Rewards: Earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase.

Sign-up bonus: You can earn a one-time $200 cash bonus once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: Get employee cards at no cost, year-end summaries, and purchase records that can be downloaded in multiple formats (such as Quicken, QuickBooks and Excel).

Read our review of the Capital One Spark Cash Select for Business

Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business

Rewards: Earn 1.5 miles per $1 on every purchase.

Sign-up bonus: You can earn a one-time bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

Annual fee: $0

Other benefits: Earn 5X miles per $1 spent when booking hotels and car rentals through Capital One Travel with the card. Get purchase records you can download in multiple formats, including Quicken, QuickBooks and Excel.

Read our review of the Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business.

Is an annual fee worth it for your cashback card?

To help you decide whether an annual fee is worth paying, we put together two tables. The first compares the Alliant Cashback Visa® Signature Credit Card (which has an annual fee of $99, waived the first year) to no-annual-fee 2% cashback cards such as the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer, while the second table compares the annual fee Capital One Spark Cash for Business and the Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business to cards offering 1.5% rewards with no annual fee. There’s a tipping point in each case where higher rewards outweigh the annual fee.

Read: Best Credit Cards Without Annual Fees

2.5% cash back vs. 2% cash back (consumer cards)

Annual spendingNet cash back earned when using a 2.5% cashback card with a $99 annual feeNet cash back earned when using a 2% cashback card with a $0 annual fee
$1,000-$74$20
$5,000$26$100
$10,000$151$200
$15,000$276$300
$20,000$401$400
$25,000$526$500
$30,000$651$600

2% cash back vs. 1.5% cash back (business cards)

Annual spendingNet cash back earned when using a 2% cashback card with a $95 annual feeNet cash back earned when using a 1.5% cashback card with a $0 annual fee
$1,000-$75$15
$5,000$5$75
$10,000$105$150
$15,000$205$225
$20,000$305$300
$25,000$405$375

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