Best of

Best Mastercard Credit Cards of 2019

cheatgame.infoJune 19, 2019

At cheatgame.info, we strive to help you make financial decisions with confidence. To do this, many or all of the products featured here are from our partners. However, this doesn’t influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

cheatgame.info's Best Mastercard Credit Cards of 2019

Our pick for

Flat-rate cash back

Citi® Double Cash Card

on Citibank's application

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

15.74% - 25.74% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Balance Transfers for 18 months

recommended credit score

Pros

The card offers a 2% cash-back rate on all purchases: You get 1% back on every dollar you spend and another 1% back when you pay off your purchases, for an annual fee of $0.

Cons

This offer does not include a sign-up bonus or a 0% intro APR period on purchases, nor does the card have any bonus categories. Higher cash-back percentages can be had on different cards for specific categories. There’s a minimum cash-back redemption of $25.
  • Earn 2% cash back on purchases 1% when you buy and 1% as you make payments for those purchases
  • To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time
  • 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 15.74% - 25.74% based on your creditworthiness.*
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back
  • Click 'Apply Now' to see the applicable balance transfer fee and how making a balance transfer impacts interest on purchases
  • No categories to track, no caps on cash back, no annual fee*

Our pick for

Bonus category cash back

Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card

on Bank of America's website, or call (877) 754-6706

on Bank of America's website, or call (877) 754-6706

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 12 billing cycles and 0% on Balance Transfers for 12 billing cycles for balance transfers made in the first 60 days

recommended credit score

Pros

This card offers useful options for your 3% cash back category: gas, travel, dining, drugstores, online shopping or furniture/home improvement stores. You also get 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs. (The 3% and 2% rewards are capped at $2,500 in combined spending per quarter; all other spending earns 1% back.) Cardholders eligible for the Bank of America® Preferred Rewards program earn higher rewards rates. The annual fee is $0.

Cons

It has a complicated rewards structure, and spending caps make it most appealing for low spenders. If you're a big spender with excellent credit and willing to pay an annual fee, there are cards with higher rewards. Even a flat-rate cash-back Mastercard might be better.
  • No annual fee
  • $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
  • Earn 3% cash back on gas or your choice of one of five other popular categories, 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs and unlimited 1% on all other purchases (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases)
  • 0% Introductory APR for 12 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee (min $10) applies to all balance transfers
  • No expiration on rewards
  • If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25% - 75% more cash back on every purchase

Our pick for

Bonus category travel rewards

Citibank ThankYou Premier Credit Card

on Citibank's application

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$95

Regular APR

18.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

recommended credit score

Pros

By paying 3 points per dollar on travel, the Citi Premier Card has an edge on competitors that offer only 2 points per dollar in that category. Citi’s definition of “travel” is broad and includes gas station purchases. Citi ThankYou points are worth 1.25 cents per point when you redeem for airfare booked through Citi.

Cons

An annual fee of $95 and lackluster point-transfer options to U.S. travel partners are clear downsides.
  • Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 points per $1 spent on travel including gas stations
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent at restaurants and on entertainment
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 60,000 Points are redeemable for $750 in airfare on any airline, anytime with no blackout dates when booked through the ThankYou® Travel Center, or $600 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • Points Transfer allows you to transfer points to participating airline loyalty programs
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases

Our pick for

Balance transfers

Citibank Simplicity Credit Card

on Citibank's application

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.99% - 26.99% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 12 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 21 months

recommended credit score

Pros

This card is for someone who needs extra time to pay down debt. It has an annual fee of $0, and it offers an introductory APR of 0% on Purchases for 12 months and 0% on Balance Transfers for 21 months, and then the ongoing APR of 16.99% - 26.99% Variable APR, not to mention no late fees.

Cons

The card charges a balance transfer fee of 5% or $5, whichever is greater. You can’t transfer balances from other Citi accounts, and you won't earn rewards. The 0% intro APR period for purchases is significantly shorter than for transfers.
  • The only card with No Late Fees, No Penalty Rate, and No Annual Fee… EVER
  • 0% Intro APR on balance transfers for 21 months from date of first transfer. All transfers must be completed in first 4 months. After that, the variable APR will be 16.99% - 26.99%, based on your creditworthiness
  • 0% Intro APR on purchases for 12 months from date of account opening. After that, the variable APR will be 16.99% - 26.99%, based on your creditworthiness
  • If you transfer a balance with this offer, after your 0% Intro purchase APR expires, both new purchases and unpaid purchase balances will automatically accrue interest until all balances, including your transferred balances, are paid in full
  • There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • The same great rate for all balances, after the introductory period
  • Save time when you call with fast, personal help, 24 hours a day – just say “representative”
  • Enjoy the convenience of setting up your own bill payment schedule on any available due date throughout the month

Our pick for

Fair/average credit

Capital One QuicksilverOne Credit Card

on Capital One's website

on Capital One's website

Annual Fee

$39

Regular APR

26.96% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

recommended credit score

Pros

The card offers a solid ongoing rewards rate with no need to track bonus categories. You simply earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

Cons

The card charges an annual fee of $39. You would need to spend $2,600 per year on the card to make that back. And unlike some other cash-back cards, it doesn’t allow you to boost your rewards earnings with bonus categories.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • Earn cash rewards without signing up for rotating categories
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time
  • Monitor your credit profile with the CreditWise® app, free for everyone
  • $0 fraud liability if your card is ever lost or stolen
  • No limit to how much cash back you can earn, and cash back doesn't expire for the life of the account
  • Help strengthen your credit for the future with responsible card use
  • Get customized alerts and manage your account with the Capital One mobile app

Our pick for

Small business

Bank of America Travel Rewards World Mastercard® for Business Credit Card

on Bank of America's website

on Bank of America's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

13.49% - 23.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 9 billing cycles

recommended credit score

Pros

This card with an annual fee of $0 offers generous rewards of 1.5 points for every dollar spent, and 3 points per dollar spent on eligible travel purchases booked through Bank of America®. It also comes with a plum sign-up bonus for a no-fee card: Earn 25,000 bonus points when you make at least $1,000 in net purchases within 60 days of your account opening which can be redeemed for a $250 statement credit towards travel purchases. It charges no foreign transaction fees.

Cons

Higher reward rates are available on other no-fee small business cards. Other cards — especially cards with annual fees — also offer larger sign-up bonuses.
  • Earn 25,000 bonus points when you make at least $1,000 in net purchases within 60 days of your account opening which can be redeemed for a $250 statement credit towards travel purchases.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all purchases everywhere, every time - no matter how much you spend. Points don't expire.
  • Earn 3 points per every dollar spent on travel purchases (car, hotel, airline) booked through the Bank of America® Travel Center - powered by Expedia®.
  • No annual fee and no international transaction fees.
  • 0% Introductory APR on purchases for your first 9 billing cycles.
  • Redeem points for travel with no blackout dates, cash back or gift cards.
  • Get 75% more points on the base earn of every purchase you make when you’re a Preferred Rewards for Business Platinum Honors tier member. That means you will earn 2.62 points for every $1 you spend and 4.12 points per every $1 you spend at the Bank of America® Travel Center.

Our pick for

College students

Deserve® Edu Mastercard for Students

on Deserve's website

on Deserve's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

20.99% Variable

Intro APR

N/A

recommended credit score

Pros

The card is ideal for students who can't get approved for other cards because they lack a credit history. International students who don't have a Social Security number may be able to qualify. That's because the issuer uses its own underwriting process to evaluate applications based on alternative criteria. Cardholders get unlimited 1% cash back on all purchases, a statement credit for a 12-month Amazon Prime Student subscription (up to $59) and a $30 statement credit every time you refer a friend who qualifies for the card.

Cons

Rewards are redeemable only for statement credit, and you’ll have to wait until you have $25 in rewards (equal to $2,500 in spending) before you can redeem. Other cards offer higher rewards rates, if you can qualify for them.
  • No SSN required for International students.
  • Available to students (enrollment verification is required).
  • Amazon Prime Student on us (get reimbursed for subscription fees up to a lifetime total of $59).
  • 1% unlimited cash back on all purchases.
  • Credit limits up to $5,000.
  • $0 annual fee & no foreign transaction fees.
  • No security deposit or co-signer required.
  • Helps students build credit history and gain financial independence.
  • Use anywhere in the world where Mastercard is accepted.
  • Includes Mastercard Platinum Benefits like Car Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Roadside Assistance, Travel Assistance Services, Price Protection, Extended Warranty and ID Theft Protection.
  • Complimentary cellphone insurance up to $600.

Our pick for

Dining and entertainment

Capital One® SavorOneSM Cash Rewards Credit Card

on Capital One's website

on Capital One's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers for 15 months

recommended credit score

Pros

The card pays 3% cash back on restaurant dining and entertainment, 2% cash back at grocery stores and 1% cash back on all other purchases. It has an annual fee of $0 with no foreign transaction fees or minimum requirements for redeeming.

Cons

The card offers a good rate at grocery stores, but not extraordinary. If you buy most of your food at a supermarket, a card that pays 3% or more on grocery store purchases would be better.
  • Earn a one-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 16.24% - 26.24% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 16.24% - 26.24% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • No annual fee

Last updated on June 19, 2019

Methodology

cheatgame.info's credit cards team selects the best cards in each category based on overall consumer value. Factors in our evaluation include fees, promotional and ongoing APRs, and sign-up bonuses; for rewards cards, we consider earning and redemption rates, redemption options and redemption difficulty. A single card is eligible to be chosen in multiple categories.
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