Best Reward / Cash Back Credit Cards

Best Reward / Cash Back Credit Cards


Awesome, Shinobi. Glad to hear it’s all working out for you. Case in point: many people starting out with very little credit history have a tough time getting approved. Once you have many cards it becomes much easier, even with the initial hit to your credit score for inquiries. Travel hackers have repeatedly posted how their credit scores have actually improved after 12 months of applying for and receiving multiple cards. You are officially in the game (even if you aren’t applying for travel cards).

Keep in mind, there are often a couple card offers a year that give $500 cash signup bonuses (business and personal). These are very lucrative and it doesn’t sound like you need to MS to meet the spend either.


Thanks, guys. I appreciate the input.

That PenFed deal just appeared too good for me to ignore, so I applied despite the many turndowns I have been experiencing recently at the big banks. PenFed granted me a $21k line, which is pretty sweet for a card with no annual fee, as well as the full 2% reward. I already have the Access America account with only a couple of bucks in it . . . I mean, literally two bucks.:grinning: But I’ve never needed to pay a fee, probably because I’m totally a senior citizen. If not for that reason then I do not know why.

For whatever help it might be to others interested in this card:

I have been a PenFed member for a number of years and I had (and have) substantial CD money at PenFed. Then when Valor went belly up and was taken over by PenFed I ended up with still MORE CD dough at PenFed. So, anyway, they have a history on me and they know I do not need money . . . something which the big financial center banks might not know since I do not have any money in those banks.

But I imagine my level of resources at PenFed helped me to obtain this card with a decent credit line. That said, I have only about fifty bucks right now at NFCU and they granted me regardless an even higher credit limit! So who really can say for certain what is going on?

Anyway, this added $46k (total of PenFed and NFCU) of new credit will really help me to make great money with my little side hustle.

BTW, the application process at PenFed was easy and straightforward. I could sort of tell they were drawing heavily from my history with them, as well as from my credit report. Bottom line, if ya want credit, try going to where they know you and (even better) to where you have dough on deposit.


I suppose the Confederacy doesn’t count?


It counts in North Carolina and parts of the South.


I’m curious. What’s exceptional about the PenFed credit card giving 1.5% or 2% if you qualify? I mean what are the advantages vs. Citi DoubleCash? Yes there may be the $100 sign-up bonus but a hard pull is probably not worth that low a bonus, especially in case you’re like me staying barely within the 5/24 Chase rules.


First of all, I’m not a bonus player. I make my money from the rewards. No knock here on bonus players . . . not at all. But I just have a different approach to making money.

If you wanna make money from rewards you must have available credit with the highest possible percentage rate of reward. 2%, for which I qualify, is a decent reward rate today. Said another way, I already have Citi DC (a good card) and I’m maxing it out. I have any number of other cards that I’m also maxing out. So I needed more credit, again, at the highest possible reward percentage.

A feature of the PenFed card I like is that you can cash in your rewards for any amount at any time.

Appreciate your mention of the Chase 5/24 rule which was not front-of-mind for me. That rule might help to explain why the big money center banks are treating me like dirt. But I am doing great with the (much smaller) credit unions and credit is credit, so am a happy camper.


I am tempted by the Flagship Rewards mostly for the bonus.

For the first $4000 in spending in 90 days, you would get $580 back or the equivalent of 14.5%.


Hey, guys:

Check out the new Freedom Credit Union Cash Back Visa card. It offers a 5% reward, in cash, for the first three months.


Hey, shinobi,

Uh, no. You left out pertinent details which are easily accessible at this handy dandy link:

The fine print:

“All purchases made from November 1, 2018 through January 31, 2019 with the Cash Back card will receive 5% cash back deposited into the primary savings account at the credit union by the 5th business day of the following month. Purchases made after January 31, 2019 with the Cash Back card will receive 1% cash back deposited into the primary savings account at the credit union by the 5th business day of the following month.”

Essentially, the card is only a 1% cash back card starting February 1, 2019. The savings account rate as of this posting is only .30%. IMO, nothing much to entice with this one.

If anyone is enticed by this, here are the limitations on joining:

" You can join Freedom Credit Union if you:

* Live, work, worships or go to school in Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, or Montgomery County
* Are a family member of a current member. (Spouse, children, parents, siblings, grandchildren, grandparents, stepparents or stepchildren.)
* Employed by one of our Select Employee Groups"


Good and helpful post, gwraigty. Thanks!

Regarding membership, though, Ken posts the following:

Membership in Freedom Credit Union is open to any qualified individual that meets the membership criteria for the American Consumer Council and lives in the states of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, or Delaware.

Candidly, I do not think the deal is sufficiently attractive to where a current non-member would join to get this deal. Could be wrong on that. But really was posting to bring deal to attention of existing Freedom members.


I am a Freedom CU member. Tempted to open this Cash Back Visa card. My property tax bill is due now with a grace period of 10 days to pay. It would be nice to get a 5% reward on that large bill.

Question…Is this a regular Reward Card that you has all the regulations. I refuse to make 10+ small payment –
And wonder if I could get the card opened real quickly.


Do not entirely understand your question. Could you possibly re-phrase and expand a bit.

As for the timing aspect, I think it might be VERY close. Following approval it can easily consume ten days just for you to receive your new card.


I got an email from FIDO today; 2,000 bonus points for $150 spend (YMMV) from Nov 1 to Dec 31. FIDO confirmed that last July’s promo - 2,500 points for $500 spend is arriving soon.


Geeze I need to stop using my card. 2,000 points for $6200 in spend here from Fidelity.


Yeah I only use my card for promos. Before July, I got 3 promos of $50, $100, and $300 spend for 2,000 points.


I used to get regular promos from Fidelity, but I haven’t gotten one in years. It’s my go-to card, at least until recently. Maybe that’s why?


Try using a different card like Citi Double Cash instead. Also check your Spam folder and email settings in your Fidelity account.


Shinobi clearly said it’s 5% for the first 3 months. The only part left out is that it isnt a rolling 3 months; the longer you wait the shorter your promo period will be. But at the moment it’s no different than any other 3-month promotion.

And I’m not sure what the savings account interest rate has to do with anything? You dont have to keep any particular amount in that account, and the rewards deposit can be withdrawn as soon as it posts.

5% on all spending is becoming extinct. These days, anything 5% comes with category restrictions, and/or a pretty low cap. I imagine there are plenty of people here that can make this card very worthwhile, the only question is how durable the credit union is as far as high volume spending.


I got the 2,500 points for $500 spend this time.


Thanks! I had an email setting turned off. My grocery shopping has been going on my new Huntington Voice MC, so that might help, too. :smile: