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Best PNC Credit Cards

Best PNC Credit Cards

*Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

This article was last updated Mar 03, 2020. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

PNC Bank offers nine credit cards — four consumer cards and five small business cards. If you’re considering applying for a new PNC credit card, that’s a lot of options. We analyzed and compared the benefits, fees and rewards to come up with the three best PNC cards to help you decide if one might work best for you.

We chose two consumer PNC cards and one PNC business card that offer either strong rewards or a competitive 0% introductory APR period — and none of them charge an annual fee. But in case it turns out a PNC credit card isn’t a good fit for you, we also recommend alternatives for cash back, balance transfer and business cards.

Best PNC card for cash back: PNC Cash Rewards® Visa®

Who this card is best for: If you’re looking for simple cashback rewards and want a card that earns a generous rate on gas station purchases and dining — as well as a solid rate on grocery store purchases — the PNC Cash Rewards® Visa® could be a perfect fit.

Why we like this card: Earn 4% cash back on gas station purchases, 3% on dining, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases. Note that there’s an $8,000 annual spending limit on the higher cashback rates, after which you’ll earn 1% cash back on every purchase. So, if you spend up to the cap on gas purchases alone in a year, you could earn $320 in cash back.

Even with the annual spending limit, this is one of the most generous cards for earning cash back on gas that we could find on our site. While cards such as the Discover it® Cash Back and Chase Freedom® have historically offered gas station purchases as a rotating 5% category, those cards limit those earnings at $1,500 each quarter you activate (where you could earn $75 a quarter or $300 a year if you hit the cap every quarter by focusing your spending on a 5% earning category), and also change rewards categories quarterly.

Additional card details: Earn a $100 bonus after you make $1,000 or more in purchases during the first 3 billing cycles. Also, this card offers a 0% introductory APR for the first 12 billing cycles on balance transfers. After, a 14.49% - 24.49% variable APR applies.

Best PNC card for a 0% balance transfer intro APR offer: PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card

Who this card is best for: If you need more than a year of no interest to pay off debt transferred from another credit card or to finance a big purchase over time, the PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card is a solid choice.

Why we like this card: With a 0% introductory APR for the first 15 billing cycles on balance transfers, the PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card offers a temporary reprieve from expensive interest charges, allowing the entire amount of your payments to go toward the principal of the debt. (After the intro period ends, a 11.49% to 21.49% variable APR applies.)

The balance transfer fee is pretty standard if you act fast, but rises after the first three months: Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater, for the first 90 days following account opening. After that, either $5 or 4% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater.

And if you’re looking to make a big purchase and have the option to pay it off over time without incurring interest charges, this card also offers a 0% introductory APR for the first 15 billing cycles on purchases. After, a 11.49% to 21.49% variable APR applies.

Additional card details: Earn a $100 bonus after you make $1,000 or more in purchases during the first 3 billing cycles following account opening. However, if you’re using this card for a balance transfer, you probably don’t want to add new purchases to the balance.

Best PNC business card: PNC Cash Rewards® Visa Signature® Business Credit Card

Who this card is best for: If you run a small business and are looking for a card that earns competitive flat-rate cash back on every purchase, the PNC Cash Rewards® Visa Signature® Business Credit Card could help you do that.

Why we like this card: Earn 1.5% cash back on net purchases. There’s no limit on the amount of cash back you can earn. There are cashback business cards that offer higher rewards rates, but they are likely to either charge an annual fee or offer higher rewards rates for spending in specific categories. For business owners who want a card with a $0 annual fee and don’t want to worry about spending categories, this card is a simple, straightforward option.

Additional card details: Earn a $200 bonus when you make at least $3,000 in qualifying net purchases within the first three billing cycles following account opening. Plus, the card offers travel benefits including:

  • Lost luggage reimbursement
  • Travel accident insurance
  • Auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Roadside dispatch
  • Travel and emergency assistance services
  • Visa Signature Concierge

Alternatives to PNC credit cards

If you aren’t sold on applying for a PNC credit card, but are still in the market for a card that can earn cash back, help you save money through a balance transfer or make managing business expenses easier, here are three alternative cards to consider.

Best alternative for cash back: Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

If you aren’t sure that gas stations and dining make up enough of your monthly budget to benefit from the PNC Cash Rewards® Visa® rewards program, a good alternative could be the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card. It earns 3% cash back in the category of your choice, 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs for the first $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases, 1% cash back on every purchase — and you can choose from six categories for your 3% rewards rate.

The options for your 3% category are as follows:

  • Gas
  • Online shopping
  • Dining
  • Travel
  • Drug stores
  • Home improvement/furnishings

You can change your 3% category as frequently as every month — plus, the 2% cash back you’ll earn on grocery store and wholesale club purchases is pretty good, too. The card’s annual fee is $0.

Best alternative for a 0% balance transfer intro period: Chase Slate®

This card offers a 0% balance transfer intro APR period equally as long as the PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card, and has no balance transfer fee for the first two months. If you’re looking for a balance transfer card to help you pay off high-interest debt from another card or a interest-free period to finance a large purchase, the Chase Slate® is one of our top choices.

There’s a 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months. After that time, a 16.49% - 25.24% variable APR applies. The balance transfer fee is $0 for the first 60 days that your account is open, after that, either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater. The Chase Slate® also offers a 0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months, after which a 16.49% - 25.24% variable APR applies.

The annual fee is $0.

Best alternative business card: Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business

If you travel for business frequently, the Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business might be a better choice than the PNC Cash Rewards® Visa Signature® Business Credit Card — it earns a competitive flat rewards rate, and allows you to transfer miles to a variety of different loyalty programs.

Earn 1.5 miles per $1 on every purchase. Plus, earn 5 miles per $1 spent when booking hotels and rental cars through Capital One Travel. When redeeming miles, you can either book new travel through Capital One or use the Purchase Eraser feature to cover a travel purchase you’ve already made. Note that Purchase Eraser redemptions must be made within 90 days from the date your purchase posts to your account.

You can also transfer miles to the following travel partners:

  • Accor Live Limitless
  • Aeromexico Club Premier
  • Air France KLM Flying Blue
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Alitalia MilleMiglia Program
  • Asia Miles
  • Avianca LifeMiles
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad Airways Etihad Guest
  • EVA Air Infinity MileageLands
  • Finnair Plus
  • Hainan Airlines Fortune Wings Club
  • JetBlue TrueBlue
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer
  • Qatar Airways Privilege Club
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer

The Capital One® Spark® Miles Select for Business’s annual fee is $0.

PNC credit card FAQs

What credit score is needed for a PNC credit card? PNC credit cards tend to be aimed at applicants with good or excellent credit scores.

Can I get prequalified for a PNC credit card? PNC does not offer an online prequalification tool like issuers such as American Express and Capital One. You may receive a pre-qualification offer by mail, but that doesn’t guarantee you’ll be approved.

Is there a PNC student credit card? PNC currently does not offer a credit card aimed specifically at students. However, here is our curated list of best student cards.

Is there a PNC secured credit card? PNC currently does not offer a secured credit card. If you’re looking for a secured credit card, take a look at our top picks.

The information related to the Chase Slate® and Chase Freedom® have been independently collected by CompareCards and have not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.


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