GOBankingRates’ Best Credit Cards for Travel, Rewards & More

·4 min read
nortonrsx / iStock.com
nortonrsx / iStock.com

With so many credit card options available, it's hard to know which ones will best fit your lifestyle and goals. Fortunately, GOBankingRates has done all the legwork for you by analyzing top credit cards across a number of factors, including rewards offered, fees, interest rates, sign-up bonuses, and perks and benefits.

See: 4 Credit Cards That Are Great for Day-to-Day Errands
Learn: The Top Purchases You Should Always Make With a Credit Card

Using these metrics and more, GOBankingRates has identified the best credit cards for your needs, whether you're looking to save on travel, earn rewards, get cash back on purchases, transfer an existing credit card balance or rack up airline miles.

Keep reading to find out GOBankingRates' Best Credit Cards available now.

Last updated: Oct. 11, 2021

South_agency / Getty Images
South_agency / Getty Images

Best Travel Credit Card: Chase Freedom Unlimited

The Chase Freedom Unlimited credit card features no annual fee and a 15-month 0% APR intro period. With 5% cash back earned on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, it's an ideal card for frequent travelers who want to save.

Rounding out the top 10 Best Travel Credit Cards are:

  • Chase Freedom Flex

  • Barclays JetBlue Plus Card

  • U.S. Bank Altitude Connect Visa Signature Card

  • U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express Card

  • TD First Class Visa Signature Credit Card

  • Navy Federal Credit Union Visa Signature Flagship Rewards Credit Card

  • American Express Green Card

  • American Express Gold Card

  • PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature Card

Read More: The Quickest Ways To Pay Off Your Credit Card Debt

Methodology: GOBankingRates identified the best travel credit cards by analyzing the following factors: (1) annual fees; (2) APR for purchases; (3) promotional APR; (4) sign-up bonuses; (5) rewards and features; (6) foreign transaction fees; and (7) travel perks. All data was sourced from each financial institution’s website or promotional material and is accurate as of Aug. 18, 2021.

Shutterstock.com
Shutterstock.com

Best Rewards Credit Card: American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card

The American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card allows you to earn 6% cash back on groceries and streaming subscriptions, 3% cash back on transit and gas, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. There is a $95 annual fee, but it is waived for the first year.

GOBankingRates' other top picks for Best Rewards Credit Card include:

  • Chase Freedom Unlimited

  • Chase Freedom Flex

  • PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature Card

  • U.S. Bank Altitude Go Visa Signature Card

  • Capital One SavorOne Rewards

  • U.S. Bank Altitude Connect Visa Signature Card

  • American Express Gold Card

  • U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card

  • American Express Green Card

See: Why It’s Still Better To Use Your Credit Card Over Your Debit Card

Methodology: GOBankingRates identified the best rewards credit cards by analyzing the following factors: (1) annual fees; (2) APR for purchases; (3) promotional APR; (4) sign-up bonuses; and (5) rewards and features. All data was sourced from each financial institution’s website or promotional material and is accurate as of Aug. 11, 2021.

B4LLS / Getty Images/iStockphoto
B4LLS / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Best Cash-Back Credit Card: Chase Freedom Unlimited

The Chase Freedom Unlimited credit card is the Best Cash-Back Credit Card in addition to the Best Travel Credit Card thanks to its overall high rates of cash-back rewards. Not only do cardholders earn 5% cash back on travel purchases made through Chase Ultimate Rewards, but they'll also earn 3% cash back on dining at restaurants -- including takeout and eligible delivery services, 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.

Here are the other Best Cash-Back Credit Cards that round out the top 10:

  • Chase Freedom Flex

  • American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card

  • U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card

  • Citi Custom Cash Card

  • Capital One SavorOne Rewards

  • American Express Blue Cash Everday Card

  • Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards

  • M&T Visa Signature Credit Card

  • Discover it Cash Back

Check Out: 90-Second Moves To Raise Your Credit Score 200 Points

Methodology: GOBankingRates identified the best cash-back credit cards by analyzing the following factors: (1) annual fees; (2) APR for purchases; (3) promotional APR; (4) sign-up bonuses; and (5) rewards and features. All data was sourced from each financial institution’s website or promotional material and is accurate as of Aug. 11, 2021.

PATTRAWUT / Getty Images/iStockphoto
PATTRAWUT / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Best Balance Transfer Credit Card: Navy Federal Credit Union Platinum Credit Card

The Navy Federal Credit Union Platinum Credit Card features no annual fees, no balance transfer fees, no foreign transaction fees and no cash advance fees. And with a relatively low purchase and balance transfer variable APR of 5.99% to 18.00%, it's a good choice for those who know they will be maintaining a balance on their credit card.

GOBankingRates' other picks for Best Balance Transfer Credit Card include:

  • Union Bank Platinum Visa Credit Card

  • SunTrust Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • M&T Visa Credit Card

  • KeyBank Latitude Credit Card

  • BB&T Bright Credit Card

  • M&T Visa Credit Card with Rewards

  • M&T Visa Signature Credit Card

  • TD First Class Visa Signature Credit Card

  • Bank of America BankAmericard Credit Card

See: What Happens When You Get Denied for a Credit Card — And What To Do Next

Methodology: GOBankingRates identified the best balance transfer credit cards by analyzing cards offered by all banks with over $100 billion in total assets and the three largest credit unions across the following factors: (1) length of 0% intro APR for balance transfers; (2) length of 0% APR for purchases; (3) balance transfer rate; (4) balance transfer fees; (5) annual fees; (6) purchase APR; and (7) any perks associated with a card that might extend its value past the promotional APR period. All data was sourced from each financial institution’s website or promotional material and is accurate as of Aug. 4, 2021.

Chalabala / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Chalabala / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Best Airline Credit Card: Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card

With the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card, cardholders earn three miles per dollar on Delta purchases, three miles per dollar on purchases made directly with Hotels, two miles per dollar at restaurants -- including takeout and delivery -- and two miles per dollar on groceries. Although there is a $250 annual fee, the travel perks may make up for this -- they include a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck fee credit and an annual companion certificate that can be used for a domestic main cabin round-trip.

Rounding out the top 10 Best Airline Credit Cards are:

  • Chase United Quest Card

  • Chase United Explorer Card

  • Delta SkyMiles Gold American Express Card

  • Sun Country Airlines Visa Signature Card

  • Chase United Club Infinite Card

  • Chase United Gateway Card

  • Barclays AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite Mastercard

  • Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card

  • Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card

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Methodology: GOBankingRates identified the best airline credit cards by analyzing the following factors: (1) rewards earn rate; (2) any foreign transaction fees; (3) annual fees; (4) regular APR for purchases; (5) sign up bonuses; (6) Airline Destinations totals; (7) 2019 enplaned passengers total; (8) total destination locations; (9) 2019 number of enplaned passengers; and (10) miscellaneous travel benefits. All data was sourced from each financial institution’s or airline's website or promotional materials and is accurate as of Aug. 2, 2021.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: GOBankingRates’ Best Credit Cards for Travel, Rewards & More

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