Best cash back rewards Card

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alamo
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2018 3:29 pm

Best cash back rewards Card

Post by alamo »

Hi, looking for the current options for cash back rewards credit cards. Is the BofA preferred awards still the best combined rate available? I have been using the BarclayCard ArrivalPlus for years at 2+%. I have cash to park to get a higher rate.
Horsefly
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Location: Colorado, mostly

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by Horsefly »

It may be a little daunting to go through, but the answer to your question (multiple answers, actually) is here: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=192008

Edit to add: I'm pretty sure you are no longer getting 2+% back on the Barclaycard Arrival Plus. I used to love that card, but they downgraded the rewards quite a while ago. I then switched to the no-fee version, and almost never use it.
hoffse
Posts: 158
Joined: Wed Aug 03, 2016 7:47 am

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by hoffse »

alamo wrote: Mon Oct 19, 2020 9:55 am Hi, looking for the current options for cash back rewards credit cards. Is the BofA preferred awards still the best combined rate available? I have been using the BarclayCard ArrivalPlus for years at 2+%. I have cash to park to get a higher rate.
If you have the assets, then yes the BOA suite is the best for ongoing spend. Be sure to open one of their cards that offers 5.25% back on online purchases at the same time (with the highest reward tier) if you do a lot of online shopping. You can change the category once a month, but I find leaving mine set to online shopping easily nets me the highest cash back. They have 4 or 5 cards that offer this.

Fair warning - it's a pain in the butt to set everything up if you have no prior relationship with BOA or Merrill. But once it's done and you have met the 90 day wait period, the cash back works great. I switched over at the beginning of the year because I am now running $50K+ of estimated taxes through a credit card, and I wanted something with a high cash back rate as an option. I can also pay my child's daycare with a credit card for no fee. So for me, the extra cash back was worth the colossal pain of opening the various accounts and moving assets over. I don't think I would bother though if you don't anticipate significant credit card spend.... in that case, just stick with a 2% card like the Fidelity card because BOA and Merrill are both pretty miserable to deal with.
Topic Author
alamo
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2018 3:29 pm

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by alamo »

Horsefly wrote: Mon Oct 19, 2020 10:06 am It may be a little daunting to go through, but the answer to your question (multiple answers, actually) is here: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=192008

Edit to add: I'm pretty sure you are no longer getting 2+% back on the Barclaycard Arrival Plus. I used to love that card, but they downgraded the rewards quite a while ago. I then switched to the no-fee version, and almost never use it.
I probably wasnt clear I get the 2% value when redeeming for travel spend plus 5% bonus when points are redeemed. Fidelity charges foreign transaction fees last time I checked. Not a big deal currently I guess...
stilllurking
Posts: 179
Joined: Mon Jun 16, 2014 10:44 am

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by stilllurking »

+1 for hoffse's post. I've been with BoA with cash rewards cards and the premium rewards card for about 1.5 years now. Great payback on the rewards. No issues when I call in to get help which is rare.

Parking some ETFs for the preferred rewards program.
humblecoder
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Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 8:46 am

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by humblecoder »

My current credit card strategy:

Chase Freedom, Discover -> 5% cash back on rotating quarterly categories
BoA Cash Rewards w/ Platinum Honors -> 5.25% cash back on one category (online purchases gives me the most bang for the buck but I will switch it if I have a large purchase in another category coming up), 3.5% cash back on groceries/warehouse stores
BoA Premium Rewards w/ Platinum Honors -> 2.625% cash back on everything else

I know others have gotten multiple BoA Cash Rewards cards to be able to have a card for different categories or to extend the quarterly limit on getting the bonus, but I am not that advanced :-)

Holding $100K at BoA/Merrill Edge is a bit of a pain, so you have to decide if it is worth it to you. I ended up moving my IRA's and taxable account there, but I might end up only keeping my taxable account there once it gets to $100K. None of their non-transaction fee mutual funds are any good, so you are pretty much limited to ETF's if you don't want to pay commissions. That said, if you are a ETF-only person, then they are fine.

Otherwise, there are many "2% cash back on everything" cards you can use as an alternative if you don't want to go through the hassle of moving assets to BoA/Merrill Edge (Fidelity credit card being one example).
Lee_WSP
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Location: Arizona

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by Lee_WSP »

humblecoder wrote: Mon Oct 19, 2020 2:39 pm
I know others have gotten multiple BoA Cash Rewards cards to be able to have a card for different categories or to extend the quarterly limit on getting the bonus, but I am not that advanced :-)
It's not that advanced. The "internet card" lives in a desk drawer or somewhere secure (since it's only used for internet purchases (you "store it" in a password manager)) while the "dining" card lives in your actual wallet. Although you've already got the "everything else" card in the BoA Rewards.
UpperNwGuy
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Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by UpperNwGuy »

If you have cash to park, then Bank of America has the best cash back rewards.
humblecoder
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Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by humblecoder »

Lee_WSP wrote: Mon Oct 19, 2020 4:04 pm
humblecoder wrote: Mon Oct 19, 2020 2:39 pm
I know others have gotten multiple BoA Cash Rewards cards to be able to have a card for different categories or to extend the quarterly limit on getting the bonus, but I am not that advanced :-)
It's not that advanced. The "internet card" lives in a desk drawer or somewhere secure (since it's only used for internet purchases (you "store it" in a password manager)) while the "dining" card lives in your actual wallet. Although you've already got the "everything else" card in the BoA Rewards.
I know. Hence the smiley. :-)

I am relatively new to BoA Cash Rewards, so my plan is to start with one and then add more cards if I need to expand my quarterly limit. Online purchases are by far my biggest category so it would make more sense to use that category for all my cards.

If I have a particularly big purchase in another category, I figured I'd just change the category near the end of the month and then change it back to online when the new month starts.

So I should have said that I am not that advanced yet! :-) (note the smiley :-))
Lee_WSP
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Location: Arizona

Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by Lee_WSP »

humblecoder wrote: Mon Oct 19, 2020 5:17 pm
So I should have said that I am not that advanced yet! :-) (note the smiley :-))
8-) :sharebeer

They’ve got those sign up bonuses to entice you. Just saying. Apparently I’ve got three of them.
bling
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Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by bling »

i've always held ETFs so moving my money over to BoA was a no brainer to get access to this incredible credit card program.
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F150HD
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Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by F150HD »

dozens of threads on this topic
Kaizen Soze
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Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by Kaizen Soze »

BOA: 5.25%. First get the Travel Rewards card with $500 bonus, $100 incidentals, and Global Entry. After a year downgrade. I now have 2 BOA cash back cards and will soon open another Travel Rewards for another $500 bonus.
Amazon: 5% Amazon purchases.
Chase Freedom 5% rotating categories - Combine with Chase Sapphire Reserve for a 7.5% cash back. That's if you can utilize the Chase Sapphire Reserve benefits. I'll probably downgrade the Sapphire Reserve in 2021.
Citi Doublecash: 2% everyday.

Then my wife has the PenFed card, 5% gas and 3% supermarket.
tj
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Re: Best cash back rewards Card

Post by tj »

First get the Travel Rewards card with $500 bonus, $100 incidentals, and Global Entry. After a year downgrade.
That's the Premium Rewards, not the Travel Rewards.
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