The 5 Best Rewards Credit Cards for 2019

posted on 06-10-2019

by Christian Hudspeth

If you're going to spend money anyway, then why not get paid for it?

Whether you're looking for credit cards with up to 6% cash back, double flight miles, or even a free hotel stay each year, there are plenty of highly-rewarding credit card options for you this year.

Our research staff has spent countless hours analyzing hundreds of this year's most generous reward credit cards. After doing so, we've identified five cards with the highest cash back rates on the most popular spending categories, the lowest annual fees, and the most generous (and unique!) cardholder perks on the market.

Assuming you don't plan to carry a balance and have excellent credit (read this if you don't), here is our list of favorite cash back credit cards and rewards credit cards for 2019:

Fidelity Rewards Visa Signature Card

Want to fund your retirement account every time you spend money? Now you can. The Fidelity Rewards Visa Signature Card deposits 2% of every dollar you spend into a Fidelity investment account, IRA, your kids' 529 college plan, or even a fund for charity.

If you spent $4,000 per month on the card, then you'd earn $960 in rewards in a single year. Hypothetically, assuming you earn a 7% annual return on those funds in your Fidelity account, those rewards could grow to more than $41,000 in 20 years.

Highlights

  • 2% of purchases go to fund your Fidelity account
  • No limits on rewards
  • $0 annual fee

Who This Card is Best for

Everyday spenders and savers who want to earn an impressive 2% reward on every dollar spent, and who want to save and invest those rewards in a brokerage account.

Annual Fee Intro Bonus Offer Credit Needed
$0 $100 Excellent
Source: CreditCards.com

American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card


One of the best reward cards for everyday spending, AMEX's Blue Cash Preferred Card pays a stellar 6% cash back on U.S. supermarket purchases up to a $360 cash reward limit per year.

The card comes with a $95 annual fee, but its $250 sign-up bonus combined with an unlimited 3% cash back rate at U.S. gas stations and 1% cash back everywhere else help make up for its moderate price tag.

Highlights

  • 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 in spending, then 1%)
  • 6% cash back on select US streaming subscriptions
  • 3% cash back on transit (taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses, etc)
  • 3% cash back at gas stations
  • 0% intro APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers

Who This Card is Best for

Car commuters and frequent supermarket/department store shoppers.

Annual Fee Intro Bonus Offer Credit Score Needed
$95 $250 Good
Source: CreditCards.com

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card


Love to travel? Capital One's Venture Rewards Credit Card could help you go on a lot more vacations.

The card's $95 annual fee (waived the first year) is easy to recoup when you consider the $500 sign-on bonus (if you spend $3,000 in the first three months), waived foreign transaction fees, travel discounts and upgrades, and a generous $250,000 travel accident insurance benefit.


Highlights

  • Earn two air miles per $1 spent (equal to 2% cash back)
  • Get 50,000 bonus miles (~$500) if you spend $3,000 in the first three months
  • No foreign transaction fees or blackout dates on flights

Who This Card is Best for

High income individuals who spend heavily on their credit cards and travel frequently throughout the year.

Annual Fee Intro Bonus Offer Credit Score Needed
$95 (waived first year) 50,000 miles ($500 for travel purchases) Good
Source: CreditCards.com

IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card


Want a free night's stay every year at an IHG hotel (InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, and Holiday Inn) just for being a cardholder? With its $89 annual fee, the IHG Rewards Club Premier Card gives you that.

It also offers 80,000 bonus points (~$800 redeemable at IHG hotels) after sign-on (just spend $2,000 in the first three months) to help you pay for reward nights, merchandise, airfare, and other inviting rewards.

Highlights

  • 5% rewards for IHG hotel stays, and 2% rewards for gas, grocery, and restaurants
  • Get an Anniversary Free Night each year of card membership at 5,000 hotels worldwide
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points (~$800 at IHG hotels) if you spend $2,000 in the first three months

Who This Card is Best for

International hotel travelers and everyday spenders.

Annual Fee Intro Bonus Offer Credit Score Needed
$89 80,000 bonus points ($800 to use at IHG hotels) Good
Source: CreditCards.com

Costco Citi Card


A personal favorite and a beloved secret among Costco members, the Costco Citi Card may offer the most lucrative cash back rate for gas and restaurant spending on the market.

Though it's only available with a $60 Costco Membership and the cash rewards are only redeemable once annually, this high-value card comes with damage/theft purchase protection and even extends the length of manufacturer's warranties on your purchases.

Highlights

  • 4% cash back on gas (up to $7,000 spent per year, then 1% cash back thereafter)
  • 3% cash back at restaurants and on select travel purchases
  • 2% cash back on Costco and Costo.com purchases
  • 1% cash back everywhere else

Who This Card is Best for

Frequent Costco shoppers, car commuters, restaurant connoisseurs, and overseas vacationers.

Annual Fee Intro Bonus Offer Credit Score Needed
$0 ($60 Costco membership required) N/A Excellent
Source: CreditCards.com

What's the Best Rewards Credit Card for Me?

Pick the card that best fits your lifestyle and enjoy your hard-earned rewards as you spend! Just remember to keep your credit score high and pay off your card balances to minimize your interest charges while maximizing your cash-back rewards.

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