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Best Grocery Credit Cards for 2018

Best Grocery Credit Cards for 2018

*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 Jun 15, 2018, 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.

Best grocery credit cards
Best overall Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
Best for unlimited spending Discover it® Cash Back
Best with no annual fee Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
Best rewards flexibility Huntington Voice Credit Card®
Best for simplicity Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card - $200 Cash Rewards Offer
Best perks Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express and Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

How we chose the best grocery credit cards

If it seems like you live in the grocery store, then you may want to get a credit card that can at least give back some of the money you spend there. The top goal is to earn as many points per $1 spent on groceries without paying high annual fees or missing out on travel and purchase perks. And if you can also earn more points in popular categories like gas, dining and travel, that’s another bonus with a grocery-focused card. Below are our picks for the best grocery credit cards and why you should consider them.

Best overall card: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

  • $200 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.*

  • 6% at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases*

  • 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations, 1% back on other purchases*

Highlights
  • $200 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%) - that means spending $60 a week at U.S. supermarkets could earn over $180 back per year.
  • 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations. 1% cash back on other purchases.
  • Over 1.5 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2017.
  • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • $95 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

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

More Info


Why we like it: This card offers one of the best rewards in the supermarket category, at 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%). 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations, 1% cash back on other purchases.

So if you spend right up to the card’s $6,000 a year limit for supermarket spending, that translates into $360 in cash back. You also earn higher rewards for spending in select department stores, a benefit that isn’t offered by many credit cards. Your cash back can be redeemed in increments of 25, as a credit statement or on the Reward Dollar website.

It comes with a welcome offer of a $200 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.

The card also has generous perks that are standard with American Express-branded cards, including car rental loss and damage insurance, roadside assistance, travel accident insurance, access to a 24/7 global assist hotline, extended warranty protection, return protection on retail items and purchase protection.

Things to watch out for: The higher points per $1 spent doesn’t apply at superstores and warehouse clubs. If you travel or eat out regularly, there are other credit cards that offer higher rewards in these categories. After you hit the $6,000 yearly limit on supermarket spending, the cash back you earn drops to 1%. You need to decide if the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express’s welcome offer is worth the spending toearn it. Excellent/Good credit is necessary to get this card.

Fees: The card has a $95 annual fee that isn’t waived during the first year. There’s an intro purchase APR of 0% for 12 months and an intro balance transfer APR of 0% for 12 months. After, it changes to a 14.99%-25.99% Variable APR.

There’s also a balance transfer fee of Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. And be careful — if you use this card outside of the U.S. — you’ll pay a foreign transaction fee of 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.

Best grocery credit card for unlimited spending: Discover it® Cash Back

  • 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


Why we like it: We like this card for one big reason — Discover will automatically match all the cash back you earn at the end of your first year.* You also 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, 1% unlimited cash back on all other purchases - automatically. In your first year of card membership, if you spend $1,500 a quarter in the 5% cashback categories and $2,500 a quarter in the 1% categories, you would earn a total of $400 cash back at the end of the year. Then Discover would match that, netting you $800 cash back.

You earn higher cashback rewards on the following quarterly rotating categories: January-March 2018, stand-alone gas stations and wholesale clubs; April-June 2018, stand-alone grocery stores; July-September 2018, restaurants; and October-December 2018, Amazon.com and wholesale clubs.

Redeem your cash back as gift cards or instant eCertificates, a charitable donation, a direct credit to your card account, electronic deposit into any account you designate or use it to pay at at merchants including Amazon.com. The Discover it® Cash Back also gives you access to Discover Deals, which allows you to earn more cashback bonuses when shopping. You can also get discounts on flights, hotels, rental cars and cruises at the Discover Travel Deals website.

Finally, you can check your FICO® Score for free on your monthly statement, online or on the mobile app.

Things to watch out for: The cashback match only covers the first year you have the card. You must register for the categories each quarter in order to earn the higher cashback rate. You only earn the higher quarterly cash back on up to $1,500 in purchases per quarter, but there’s no maximum on how much cash back you can earn on all other spending. The higher quarterly cashback rewards don’t include travel options. There are other cards that offer year-round higher cash back in the most popular spending categories.

Don’t expect to get any of the travel and purchase protection benefits offered by other credit cards. And you’ll need Excellent/Good Credit credit to get it.

Fees: The card has a $0 annual fee and offers an intro 0% for 14 months on purchases and an intro 0% for 14 months on balance transfers (after 13.99% - 24.99% Variable APR), which can save you interest payments if you pay your balance before the end of the term. There also a 3% balance transfer fee, but no foreign transaction fee.

Supermarket card with no annual fee: Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

  • $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.

  • 3% at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases*

  • 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores, 1% back on other purchases.

Highlights
  • $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).
  • 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores, 1% back on other purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 14.99% to 25.99%.
  • Over 1.5 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2017.
  • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

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

More Info


Why we like it: This card opens with a welcome offer: $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months. Cardmembers then earn 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%). 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores. 1% cash back on other purchases. Spending $6,000 a year at supermarkets will net you $180 in cash back. You also get the flexibility to pay off the card monthly or carry a balance.

Like the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, this card offers higher rewards for spending in select department stores. You earn your cash back in increments of 25 Blue Cash Reward Dollars as a credit statement or on the Reward Dollar website. The card also comes with travel and purchase perks.

Things to watch out for: Again, you’re not going to earn those higher points per $1 spent when you use the card at superstores and warehouse clubs. This card isn’t a good option for those who travel or eat out regularly. Like the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, your cash back drops to 1% after you hit the $6,000 yearly limit on supermarket spending. The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express’s welcome offer isn’t as generous as other cards. You need Excellent/Good credit to earn this card.

Fees: The good news is that this card has a $0 annual fee. The card starts with an intro 0% for 15 months on purchases and an intro 0% for 15 months on balance transfers (after 14.99%-25.99% Variable APR). If you’re going to do a balance transfer, be aware of the card’s balance transfer fee of Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. Using this card internationally will have you paying a foreign transaction fee of 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.

The best grocery card with flexible rewards: Huntington Voice Credit Card®

Why we like it: It’s all about flexibility and maximum points with this card. You can earn 3 points per $1 spent in 10 different categories, including grocery and discount/warehouse stores. You can change your categories within the first 30 days of opening your card, then again before the start of each quarter to cover the next quarter. You earn a flat 1 point per $1 spent on everything else.

You have to love the variety of categories that cover 3 points per $1 spent with the Huntington Voice Credit Card®, including gas, travel, restaurants, utilities/office supplies and department/apparel/sporting goods stores. You also have flexibility on how you redeem your points, including cash via direct deposit, gift cards, airfare, hotel or cruise ship travel or pay for electronics, jewelry, gift cards, sporting goods and more.

Things to watch out for: There’s no splashy sign-up bonus with the Huntington Voice Credit Card®. While the 3 points per $1 spent in the category of your choice is nice, there is a cap on how much you can earn — $2,000 or 6,000 points per quarter. That cap can hurt if you spend more than $2,000 a quarter on groceries. And if you switch your category in a quarter, you’ll only earn 1 point for every $1 spent.

Fees: The Huntington Voice Credit Card® doesn’t have an annual fee. The card comes with a 0% introductory APR for the first 12 billing cycles after account opening on balance transfers made within the first 90 days, but it doesn’t offer a purchase intro rate.

After that, your regular purchase and balance transfer APR depends on your creditworthiness under two options: rewards and lower rates. The rewards option ranges from 13.49% to 27.49% variable APR, while the lower rate option ranges from 11.49% to 25.49% variable APR. The interest rates are the same for balance transfers.

The balance transfer fee is the greater of $10.00 or 3% of the amount. The card doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees.

The best grocery card for simplicity: Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card - $200 Cash Rewards Offer

  • 0% Introductory APR on purchases for 12 billing cycles

  • 0% Intro APR for 12 billing cycles for balance transfers made in the first 60 days

  • 15.24% - 25.24% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers

Highlights
  • No annual fee
  • NEW OFFER: $200 online cash rewards bonus after you spend at least $500 on purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
  • Earn 1% cash back on every purchase, 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, and 3% on gas for the first $2,500 in combined grocery/wholesale club/gas purchases each quarter
  • No changing categories and no expiration on rewards
  • 0% Introductory APR for 12 billing cycles for purchases AND for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days, then, 15.24% - 25.24% Variable APR. 3% fee (min $10) applies to balance transfers
  • Get a 10% customer bonus every time you redeem your cash back into a Bank of America® checking or savings account
  • If you're a Preferred Rewards client, you can increase that bonus to 25% - 75%
  • Easily add your Mastercard® credit card to any digital wallet for a simple, secure, and convenient way to pay online, in-app, and in-store

See additional details for Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card - $200 Cash Rewards Offer

More Info


Why we like it: If you’re looking for a card that offers a simple cashback reward that doesn’t require quarterly registration, this card is a good option. New cardmembers earn a $200 online cash rewards bonus after you spend at least $500 on purchases in the first 90 days of account opening. The card offers a basic 3% cash back on gas and 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs for the first $2,500 in combined grocery/wholesale club/gas purchases each quarter. 1% cash back on all other purchases.

You can boost that by being a Bank of America customer. You earn a 10% bonus every time you redeem your cash back into your checking or savings account. If you belong to Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards program, that bonus rises to between 25% and 75%.

Once your balance hits $25, you can redeem your cash rewards for a statement credit, a check, or electronic deposit into a Bank of America checking or savings account or contribute to an eligible Cash Management Account® with Merrill Lynch Wealth Management® or Merrill Edge®.

Your cash rewards don’t expire as long as the card is active.

Things to watch out for: You only earn the higher cashback rewards on the first $2,500 spent combined on grocery/wholesale club/gas spending each quarter. After that, the rate drops to 1%. But if you spend $2,500 a quarter for a full year with this card, that totals $10,000, which is more generous than the $6,000 annual maximum with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express and the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express. The card doesn’t come with any travel or purchase perks, but you do get your monthly FICO® score for free. You need to have Excellent/Good credit for this card.

Fees: The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card - $200 Cash Rewards Offer has a $0 annual fee. The card offers a 0% Introductory APR on purchases for 12 billing cycles and a 0% Intro APR for 12 billing cycles for balance transfers made in the first 60 days (after 15.24% - 25.24% Variable APR). If you travel outside the country and use the card, you’ll pay a 3% foreign transaction fee.

The best supermarket spend card with perks: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express and the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Why we like it: We picked both of these cards because they come with many of the travel and purchase perks you’d expect from an American Express card. They include:

  • Car rental loss and damage insurance: Use the card to reserve and pay for a car rental and decline the collision damage waiver and you’re covered if the car is damaged or stolen.
  • Access to the Global Assist Hotline, which gives you 24/7 access to medical, legal, financial or other select emergency coordination and assistance services, including medical and legal referrals, assistance with cash wires, passport replacement, missing luggage and more when you’re at least 100 miles from home.
  • Roadside Assistance that provides emergency services like towing, changing a flat or boosting a battery in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Travel Accident Insurance that covers accidental death and dismemberment while traveling on a plane, train, ship or bus when the fare has been charged to the card.
  • Extended Warranty adds another year on eligible items bought with the card. Coverage is limited to the actual amount charged on your card for the item up to $10,000 per item and $50,000 per calendar year.
  • Return Protection allows you to take back eligible items bought with the card within 90 days if the merchant won’t take it back and get a refund.
  • Purchase protection covers items bought with the card that are stolen or damaged within 90 days. Reimbursement is capped at $1,000 per occurrence and $50,000 a year.
  • Entertainment Access Stay gives you exclusive access to ticket presales and cardmember-only events, including Broadway shows, concert tours and sporting events.

Things to watch out for: If you use the Global Assist Hotline and they connect you to a third-party service, you’ll responsible for paying any of those charges. You get help with Roadside Assistance for services — towing to the nearest available repair shop or preferred destination, a battery jumpstart, delivery of up to two gallons of fuel; locksmith services; and changing a flat tire — but you are responsible for the cost. Read the fine print on all the services available, because there may be limits to what the card will cover.

How to choose the best grocery card

Now that you have our picks for the best grocery credit cards and why we like them, it’s time to narrow the list down and choose your card. But which one is best for you? What things are most important to you, and how do you balance it out?

Annual fee: Four of the five cards we chose don’t have an annual fee. The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express has a $95 annual fee, so you need to ask if the benefits and perks that come with it balance out with what you’ll pay to have the card every year.

Sign-up bonus: Four of the five cards also come with a sign-up bonus or welcome offer for new cardmembers. Three of them — the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express, and the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card - $200 Cash Rewards Offer — have a minimum spending requirement and time period in order to earn the bonus. The Discover it® Cash Back’s new cardmember offer matches all the cash back you earn in the first year. Make sure the spending required for the cards is worth the bonus being offered.

Flexibility: There’s no reason to have a card with cash back or rewards if there aren’t easy and flexible ways to spend them. You want a card that gives you myriad ways to use the rewards you earn — cash, gift cards, direct deposit, statement credit, merchandise or travel. You also want a card that has points that don’t expire and doesn’t put caps on how many you can earn. If travel and purchase perks are important to you, then you want a card that offers them.

 

 


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