When you manage your credit cards wisely, your credit history will reflect your actions. Higher credit scores can open up all sorts of opportunities, including more spending power and better interest rates. While your mailbox might be packed full of credit card applications, that doesn't mean you should fill them all out. Smart budgeting choices got you to this point with your good credit, now you'll have to make some good choices on what to put in your wallet.
If you don't choose a rewards card carefully based on your lifestyle, you could get "stuck" with a ton of points that will just flounder in your account. For example, if you don't like to travel or don't do it often enough, skip the travel rewards card and go with a cashback rewards card. If you're eager to hang onto your rewards, make it a point to pay off your balance every month, or otherwise your interest will negate any rewards or cash back you might get.
If you'd rather spend time researching your next vacation instead of researching your credit card options, we hear you. That's why we've done the grunt work for you. Because you now have the freedom to choose which card will serve you best. We've examined and compared a variety of cards and their signup bonuses, rewards programs, annual fees (if any) and more. Keep reading to see which cards made our top 5 list of credit cards for consumers with excellent credit (750 FICO score and above).
Having credit card options gives you power over your finances
Did you know that only about 1 in 5 Americans have excellent credit scores? If you're one of them, you're in an elite club, and it's no wonder that credit card companies are rolling out the red carpet for you. Here's how to stay on the A list:
Figure out which cards are keepers. Some people believe it's best to stick to one or two cards. But then there are those who tout the benefits of having multiple credit cards in the rotation. The latter is a good move if you're super organized with your finances, can pay off all or most of the balances each month and can benefit from the numerous types of travel rewards and cashback rewards options.
Exercise financial restraint. Let's be clear: Your stack of credit cards shouldn't resemble a deck of cards. Just because you've got a good credit history and can raise your credit limit by opening another card doesn't mean you should. After all, debt hovers over our country like a persistent black cloud. If you've done well with managing your credit and have the FICO score to prove it, then don't get wooed by shiny invitations from credit card companies that show up daily in your mailbox.
Match your credit options to your spending habits. Excellent credit gives you excellent options when it comes to filling your wallet. Rewards credit cards allow you to take your spending to the next level, so a regular trip to the gas station or supermarket allows you to put money toward a vacation. So, sit back and take a look at all those credit card invitations. As a consumer with a rockin' FICO score, you are so popular. Wield that power and credit limit wisely, and you'll be rewarded—literally.
How we picked these cards that work for your lifestyle
It's all well and good to aim for the card that offers the biggest signup bonus. But it's worth it to take a few minutes to reflect on what matters most to you as a consumer. Is it travel rewards? Restaurant and entertainment benefits? Ongoing cashback incentives?
With this in mind, here are our top 5 choices of credit cards for consumers with excellent credit:
Chase Sapphire Preferred
This card is awesome for travel and restaurant rewards.
If you travel frequently, or would like to start, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card makes it easy for consumers to rack up points and redeem them for travel rewards. That's because you get 2X points per $1 on dining at restaurants and 2X points per $1 on travel. Don't for get you also get 1X point spent on all other purchases. which makes it a practical card for reaping rewards wherever you spend money.
We chose it because of the superb signup bonus
With some travel rewards cards, the cruise ship may have sailed long before you can rack up enough points to embark on any trip. Not so with Chase Sapphire Rewards. Instead, you get 50000 points when you spend $4000 in 3. So in theory, you can get the card to finance one vacation and by redeeming the point bonus, you can purchase flights for another or a reasonably priced cruise.
Consider the annual fee.
Even when a card has stellar rewards, it's a real bummer when they come with an annual fee. Granted, the Chase Sapphire Preferred isn't the most expensive card to keep in your wallet at $95 annually (although the sister card, Chase Sapphire Reserve, could be) but there are other no fee options out there. Still, if you're a loyal Chase customer and have gotten into a groove with racking up rewards points, then the annual fee will get absorbed easily year after year.
Discover it Cash Back
The card for premier rewards and perks.
If you prefer cashback rewards so you can use them any way you see fit, then the Discover it Cash Back is a contender.
Redeem points easily. Redeem points (which don't expire) for cash at any time.
Enjoy extra perks. In addition to earning 5% cash back in rotating quarterly categories, shop through Discover's online mall to accrue additional bonus points.
We chose it because of the cashback rewards.
Cause what's better than getting a nice chunk of cash back?
You might not use this card all the time. Yes, you can use Discover it for everyday purchases, but the real magic with this card is in those bonus categories. That means it might make sense for you to take this card out of the rotation at certain points during the year so you can rack up better rewards with another card. Of course, if you're cool with analyzing your spend and bonus categories every so often, then carry on with Discover it.
Capital One Venture Rewards
The card that goes all-out on travel rewards.
Capital One was one of the first credit cards to make rewards travel more manageable with no blackout dates—and it still is.
Enjoy a cool signup bonus and earn points that are easily redeemable.
Get 50000 miles to redeem toward travel and travel related purchases, when you spend $3000 in 3 months. When you're ready for redemption, points are applied as a statement credit that nullifies a previously made travel purchase through the Purchase Eraser.
Upgrade your travels with extra perks. Get ready to travel like a rock star when you call on the 24/7 concierge for planning help.
Platinum Card from American Express
Just holding the Platinum Card from AMEX feels good (it's thicker and heavier than all the rest), but what's great are the points you'll accumulate for travel and luxury upgrades. Receive 5X points on flights when you book with airlines or with Amex Travel, and Receive and 5X points on prepaid hotels by booking on amextravel.com.
We chose it because of its "elite" aspects
Remember that Tina Fey commercial where she flashes her AMEX card and gets into the first-class lounge alongside Martin Scorcese? Having that kind of luxury access is not far off from real life when you have an AMEX Platinum card. Flash your card for exclusive entry. The AMEX Platinum card will get you access to a slew of airport lounges, not to mention a credit toward Global Entry or TSA check-in. There's also a chance for credit toward your Uber rides. So even if you're flying coach, you're feeling first-class with Amex wherever you travel.
The annual fee is a tough sell at $550 but if you take advantage of the many benefits and discounts that come with being a cardholder, you can certainly make enough to absorb that fee each year.
Citi Double Cash Card
This is the best card for cashback rewards and balance transfers.
Sometimes cashback cards can get complicated with the math. Not this one!
- If you love tons of cashback and like to keep it simple, this card is for you!
- One of the most popular cash back cards, 2% cash back.
- 1% cash back on all purchases .
- 1% cash back as you pay for those purchases, as long as you pay the minimum due.
- Without any caps or category restrictions.
Skip the bonus categories and just earn points. To redeem your cashback, simply log onto your account and choose an amount to be credited.
We chose it because of its incredible balance transfer offer. If you get this card just for that benefit alone, we wouldn't blame you—but don't forget about its significant cashback rewards either!
Know that high interest rates may apply. This might surprise some consumers, so maybe just think about using this card just for a balance transfer. If not, just try to pay off the balance every month because the APR is between 15.74-25.74%.
Be patient with repayment. If you're used to paying off your credit card payments before they even hit your monthly statement, you're going to want to read this carefully.
Celebrate your Excellent credit score with options.
If you're part of the elite group of credit consumers who has Excellent credit, the world of rewards cards is your oyster. With many to choose from, we've given you are take on the best rewards for your buck! Dive in to all the perks an Excellent FICO credit score has to offer. You've earned it, credit superstar!