High gas prices affect everyone. Even if you don’t drive very often, high fuel costs trickle down through the economy, causing price increases for food and other commodities. Even though gas prices are affecting many aspects of our economy, anyone can save money on gas if they shop smartly. One of the best ways to do that is with a gas rewards card or cash rewards credit card.
Some of these cards will earn you 3% – 5% cash back on fuel purchases. With gas prices approaching $3 per gallon in parts of the US, that equals a savings of $0.09 – 0.15 per gallon, or several dollars per fill up.
Most of these cards also offer additional cash back on other purchases as well, including purchases grocery stores, restaurants, travel, and more. Using these gas rewards cards can easily save many people several hundred dollars per year (or more!).
But there are so many gas credit cards on the market. How are you supposed to decide which one is right for you? Sure, you could spend hours researching the thousands of different cards, but you don’t have to.
Luckily, we’re here to help you find the best credit card for gas. This list will give you an idea of what each hard has to offer and the advantages and disadvantages of each one.
Best Gas Credit Cards – Save Big at the Pump
The following credit cards offer some of the best rewards, rebates, and cash back for buying gas. Keep in mind many of them also offer additional rewards in other categories, such as restaurant spending, travel, and more.
As such, there is no single “best gas credit card.” There is only the best credit card for your situation. So be sure to compare the differences between these cards to pick the right one for your needs.
Chase Freedom Unlimited – Best No-Hassle Gas Rewards Credit Card
The Chase Freedom Unlimited is an excellent all-around credit card for those who don’t want to juggle cards to get the highest reward. The Chase Freedom Unlimited® card offers an automatic 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no rotating categories, no cash back limits, and no minimum reward redemption requirement. There is no annual fee, and your rewards don’t expire as long as you keep your account open.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited currently offers a $150 cash bonus after you spend a minimum of $500 on purchases within the first 3 months of account ownership. This is a very low minimum spending requirement to get the bonus.
To top it off, this card offers a 0% Intro APR on both purchases and balance transfers for 15 months from the time you open your account. There is a 3% balance transfer fee (min. $5), making this an acceptable option for balance transfers. (see our list of best balance transfer credit cards for lower cost balance transfer options).
Overall, this is a dependable card that offers very good rewards without having to jump through hoops.
You can compare this and other cash back credit cards on this page.
Ink Business Cash Credit Card – Best Business Gas Rewards Card
The Ink Business Cash Credit Card from Chase offers excellent cash back in several categories. This card is designed to be a jack of all trades when it comes to running your small business finances. It offers 2% cash back on gas and restaurants, 5% cash back in several other categories, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. It’s also the credit card I personally use for my small business.
Here is how the cash back program works for this card:
- 5% cash back – on first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores, and on internet, cable, and phone services in each anniversary year
- 2% cash back – on first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year, and
- 1% cash back – on everything else, with no limits.
For a limited time, you can also earn a $500 cash bonus when you spend $3,000 in the first three months of card ownership.
The Ink Business Cash Credit Card has no annual fee, offers a 12-month 0% introductory offer on purchases and balance transfers. You can get employee cards at no additional cost.
You can compare this credit card and other small business credit cards on this page.
Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express
How does this sound to you? –
Earn unlimited 3% cash back on gas, 6% cash back on groceries (up to $6,000 in spending per year), and 1% on other purchases.
It sounds great to me! Which is why the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express is one of my favorite cash rewards credit cards, and a great option for earning cash back on gas purchases.
To start with, you should know this card has a $95 annual fee. I’m normally not a fan of annual fees, but this card offers enough benefits that many people can easily earn that amount back and still come out with positive cash back. If the annual fee concerns you, then check out another version of this card, the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express. The Everyday Card has no annual fee but offers lower rewards tiers.
Rewards: 6% cash back on purchases at U.S. supermarkets on the first $6,000 each year, and 1% cash back after that. 3% cash back at gas stations and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
The cash back is awarded to cardholders as Reward Dollars which can be redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
- Current welcome bonus: Earn a $200 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new card within the first 3 months.
Again, there is a $95 annual fee for this card and terms apply.
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card
Like the Chase Freedom Unlimited card, the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card offers a flat 1.5% cash back rewards program on all purchases. Again, this applies to all purchases – no rotating categories or hoops to jump through, no need to sign up for rewards each quarter, and there are no limits to how much cash back you can earn. The best part? Your rewards never expire as long as your account remains open.
- Current early spend bonus: There is a $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 within the first 3 months of opening your account.
There is also a limited time 0% APR intro offer on both purchases and balance transfers. There is a reasonable 3% balance transfer fee. See the site for the APR rate after the intro period ends.
Finally, there are no annual fees and no foreign transaction fees, making this a great card to handle your everyday pending, especially if you frequently travel overseas.
Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card
The Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card is another great option for those who are looking to earn additional points on their gas purchases. The Wells Fargo Propel card offers a tiered rewards program, featuring:
3x points for eating out and dining in, 3x points for purchases at gas stations, ridesharing, and transit, 3x points for flights, hotels, homestays, and car rentals, and 1x points on all other purchases.
- Current bonus: Earn 30k bonus points when you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months. 30k points is worth $300 in redemption value, making this a solid sign up bonus.
There is no annual fee, and there is a 0% APR intro offer for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers. See terms and conditions on the Wells Fargo website for more information.
Chase Freedom – Best Gas Rewards Credit Card with Bonus Categories (up to 5% Cash Back)
The Chase Freedom is another credit card that makes our list of the best gas cards. This credit card is not to be confused with the Chase Freedom Unlimited, mentioned above, which has a similar name, but different benefits. The Chase Freedom Unlimited offers a flat 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
The Chase Freedom offers 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter. All you need to do is activate the bonus category (via phone, text, or email). The bonus categories rotate each quarter. Gas is usually offered as a bonus category each year. So you can save 5% on up to $1,500 of fuel purchases for at least 3 months each year.
The Chase Freedom also offers an automatic 1% cash back on all other purchases. There are no limits to the 1% cash back rewards, and your rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open. There is no minimum redemption amount.
- Current bonus: Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
Other nice features:
- 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers (3% balance transfer fee, with a $5 minimum).
- Free credit score updated weekly with Credit Journey
- There is no annual fee for the Chase Freedom card.
Discover it Cash Back
The Discover it Cash Back offers 5% cash back in rotating categories each quarter, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. The 5% cash back each quarter requires activation and is limited to the quarterly maximum of $1,500 in purchases. All other purchases earn 1% cash back, with no limits.
Discover lists Gas Stations as one of the quarterly cash back categories. So you can earn 5% cash back on purchases at gas stations during that quarter. 5% is about the best you will find for cash back at gas stations, making this an excellent gas rewards card. The 1% cash back on all other purchases is also a pretty decent reward.
The 5% cash back categories rotate each quarter, and include places such as gas stations, restaurants, wholesale clubs, grocery stores, and Amazon.com. If you regularly spend at these locations, then the Discover it Cash Back may be a good credit card for you.
This card has no annual fee, your cash rewards never expire, and you can redeem your rewards in any amount and at any time. This card is eligible for free Social Security number alerts. You can also view your credit score on your credit card statement or in your Discover.com account.
What to Look for When Comparing Gas Credit Cards
While some cards offer a general rewards program, others offer specific gas rewards programs that can help you save on the cost of your commute over time. With these offers, you are generally awarded a certain percentage of cash back on all of your gas or gas station purchases.
While some gas rewards cards offer cash back on gas purchases only, others are cash back cards that offer rewards on purchases other than gas. Meanwhile, some cards offer a lot of cash back – as much as 3% – on gas purchases while offering 1 or 2% back on other category purchases.
Here are some additional details you should know about gas rewards cards:
Some offer more cash back on gas purchases based on categories that rotate each quarter – While most gas cards offer cash back as a fixed percentage of your spending, a handful of cards may offer more cash back during certain quarters each year. During those “bonus periods,” you can earn as much as 5% cash back on all gas and gas station purchases. These bonus categories offer a nice little incentive for using your card for purchases other than gas.
A handful of gas rewards cards offer a sign-up bonus – In addition to the opportunity for ongoing rewards, some gas cards offer a sign-up bonus to customers who meet a minimum spending requirement within a certain length of time – usually around 3 months. In some cases, the sign-up bonus alone can be worth $200 or more. These sign-up bonuses shouldn’t change which card you go with, but if you have two that work equally well for you, then take the one with the bonus offer.
Interest rates are generally higher for all rewards cards, including gas station credit cards – Like all rewards cards, gas cards charge higher interest rates than almost any other type of card. Don’t let this scare you away from getting a credit card for gas purchases. You can avoid paying a lot of interest, you’ll need to pay your balance in full each month.
Some cards have limits on how much you can earn – While some gas cards offer an unlimited amount of cash back, others put a cap on how much you can earn each year or quarter. In some cases, these earning caps can drastically limit the rewards you earn over time. Be sure to understand what the limit is and how often it resets. You want to get the most out of your rewards card possible.
Many gas cards charge an annual fee – Since gas credit cards are a type of rewards card, many charge an annual fee. If you don’t plan to use your card regularly, the annual fee may even be enough to wipe out any rewards or cash back you earn.
Read the fine print – just like with any other card or rewards program, there is always fine print. Be sure to read all of the terms and conditions that come with the gas rewards credit cards. Don’t get sucked into a deal that promises you the world, but gives you nothing more than fees and frustration.
5 Steps to Select the Best Gas Credit Card
As you explore the world of gas rewards cards, you’ll find that not all are created equal. While some of the best credit cards for gas offer generous rewards programs that might tempt you, others offer lower interest rates or other non-monetary benefits. These steps can help you end up with the best gas card for your unique situation:
Step 1: Know your credit score.
When you’re selecting any type of credit card to apply for, your first step should involve finding out what shape your credit is in. If your score is excellent, or anything over 780, you should have no problem qualifying for the card of your choice. However, if your credit is just good (661-779), fair (601-660), poor (501-600), or bad (anything lower), you may encounter some problems. Either way, knowing your credit score ahead of time is half the battle.
Step 2: Compare rewards programs and determine whether they make sense with your spending habits.
When you’re choosing a card based on the rewards program only, take a close look at how points are earned. Ask yourself if your gas and regular spending will be enough to translate into big rewards over time. If you’re looking for a card for everyday use, it’s also important to pick an option that offers rewards on more than just gas purchases.
Step 3: Compare fees and interest rates.
Now that you’ve sifted through the various rewards programs, it’s time to learn about the various fees you’ll need to avoid. In most cases, that list will include easily avoidable charges like over-the-limit fees, late fees, and foreign transaction fees. If your card has a high APR, or Annual Percentage Rate, you’ll also want to make sure you can pay your balance in full and on time, every single time. Many times you can avoid interest by signing up for one of the zero percent credit cards. These cards will offer you a 0% rate for a period of time. This can save you a lot of money if you are carrying debt and transfer that high-interest debt to the low-interest card.
Step 4: Weigh the pros and cons of an annual fee (if applicable).
Don’t necessarily rule out a card with an annual fee. Depending on your spending habits, paying an annual fee can be more than worth it. It truly depends on how much cash back you hope to earn and how that stacks up to how much you might earn with comparable, no-fee cards. If you want to know whether an annual fee is worth it, do the math.
Step 5: Pick the card that offers the most benefits for the lowest cost possible.
Once you’ve sorted through the details of each offer, you should have a general idea of which card you want. Most of the time, the best card for you will be the one that provides the most cash back and the best benefits for very little out-of-pocket cost.
Bonus Tip: Shop Around.
Comparing Credit Card Offers is the easiest way to get the best credit card for your needs. There are literally thousands of credit cards out there, and with a little legwork, you can find a credit card that offers you flexibility and valuable savings. When shopping for a gas card, don’t forget to investigate store brand cards and credit unions. Some of these offers may be better based on your needs. Keep in mind that some gas credit cards can only be used at gas stations, or may not offer cash back if they can be used elsewhere. You may also be able to find a great deal with your credit union if you belong to one. Be sure to shop around.
Get Gas Often? Get a Gas Credit Card
Whether you drive a lot or a little, getting a gas card or flexible cash back card is almost a no brainer. Depending on how much you spend on gas and other purchases, you could knock hundreds of dollars off of your transportation costs over the months and years.
And if you drive a lot for leisure or commute to work, getting a gas card makes even more sense. Not only can you earn cash back and other rewards on purchases you were going to make anyway, but you can also use your card to continue building a positive credit history.
But here’s the best part: By using your card for gas and everyday purchases and paying it off every single month, you can often earn a slew of benefits and some serious cash with very little – or even no – out-of-pocket cost.
A lot of people say they are going to pay off their credit card balance every month, but they forget or some financial emergency pops up. Little slip-ups like forgetting to pay off your balance can cost you hundreds of dollars in interest. To avoid one of these mistakes, you can either pay off the balance as soon as you get home from getting gas, or set yourself a reminder to pay it every week. Don’t let a simple mistake keep you from getting the most out of your rewards credit card.
Unless you start using public transportation, you can’t avoid buying gas. If you’re going to be buying gas anyways, you might as well get cash back for it. Using the best gas rewards card for your needs is a great way to put a little extra cash back in your pocket for something you’re going to have to buy anyways.