If you have good or excellent credit, you have a better chance of qualifying for the best rewards credit cards. Whatever your spending patterns, there's bound to be a rewards program to match the way you use credit. Gas cards with rewards can offset the high price of gas by giving you rebates on gas or rewards points that you can use for cash back, gift cards, merchandise or travel.
Gas rebate credit card
You'll have several choices to make once you decide you want to compare credit card rewards programs tied to your car. First, think about where you buy gas. If you always use the same brand, you may want to check on the gas rebate credit card associated with the gas brand you use. If you travel often or switch gas stations, you may be better off with a credit card that earns rewards on all brands of gas (and often other day-to-day purchases too, such as groceries).
Next, you'll need to think about what is most valuable to you. You can get cash back on a gas credit card that you can redeem as a check or a credit on your account once you've accumulated a minimum amount. Another option is to earn rewards points for gas purchases that you can redeem in a variety of ways such as airline frequent flier miles, car rentals, hotel rooms or gift cards.
Comparing the best gas rebate credit cards
When comparing credit card offers, you should start with the annual fee and interest rate if you intend to carry a balance. If you pay your card in full each month, the interest rate may be less important than the perks and annual fees. Next, compare the following features to find the best gas rebate credit cards.
- Bonus points. You can earn a bonus with some credit cards for spending a certain amount or simply for making your first purchase.
- Bonus categories. Many credit card rewards programs offer you bigger rewards for spending in certain categories such as gas, groceries or restaurants. Think about how you use your credit card before you decide which one is right for you.
- Check expiration dates. Most credit cards allow their rewards points to remain available as long as you keep the card, but check the terms and conditions to be sure.
- Check limits. Some credit card rewards programs limit the amount you can earn in rebates or rewards points, or the amount of purchases eligible for rewards each month.
- Reward redemption rules. Make sure you can redeem rewards easily and the way you want, for cash or for other items.
- Check your spending. Figure out how much you spend per month in each rewards category, then do the math to estimate how much you'll earn in points or cash back with different rewards programs.
Carry a balance?
If you tend to carry a balance on your credit card bill from month to the next, keep in mind that the cash back or rewards points you can earn are not likely to offset the money you spend on interest payments. Rewards credit cards are best for consumers who pay their credit card bill in full each month.
Budgeting and gas cards with rewards
One danger with rewards programs is that you may be tempted to spend more on your credit card because you know you are earning points or cash back. Be sure you have the discipline to continue your normal spending pattern and that you can continue to repay your credit card bill in full each month before you decide on a gas rewards credit card.
If you think a gas rewards credit card would be valuable for you, compare the credit card offers on this page to see which one might be the best choice for you.