Best Gas Card and Benefits of Gas Credit Cards When Gas Prices Go Up
Anyone who commutes regularly can tell you how useful gas credit cards are. This is especially true when gas prices go up. For college students or people who commute for work, the gas rewards can stack up. Even if you don’t commute, you still fill up your car routinely using a gas card. So the best gas card can really help you when the gas prices rise.
There is also a gas credit card for bad credit available to earn gas rewards. If you’ve never heard of gas credit cards and gas rewards, this article is for you. I’ll tell you everything you need to know about gas rewards cards. I’ll also review the four best gas credit cards available including one of the gas cards for bad credit. So you’ll have a good starting point for research.
Defining What is a Gas Credit Card
A gas credit card comes directly from a gas station. When you use this card, you can get discounts and additional perks like a few cents off per gallon. Some also offer a rewards system in the form of points. You could even get as much as three percent cash back. So, if you fill your car every few days, this three percent can quickly add up.
You do want to choose the best gas card for your preferred gas station. This is important because some only offer discounts or rewards if you fuel up at their gas station. These cards can also be easier to apply for and get approved, and they can boost your credit score.
How to Apply for a Gas Credit Card
The gas station application process is usually relatively straightforward. You can ask at the gas station of your choice if they have gas credit cards and how you apply. It can vary from gas station to gas station. But, you usually have the option of applying online or applying right at the gas station.
You’ll input your relevant information and find out if your credit is high enough for approval. If you are, the lender will send you your gas reward credit card in the mail. Once you get it, you can start using it straight away. If not, you can work on rebuilding your credit and try again, or look into gas credit cards for bad credit.
Important Gas Rewards Credit Cards Considerations to Find the Best Gas Card
Even the best gas card has essential considerations you want to keep in mind. The last thing you want to do is get gas cards that don’t fit your lifestyle. It won’t do you any good if you don’t use it regularly.
- Annual Fee – Annual fees tend to cost more with rewards cards. This is true for gas rewards credit cards as well. You want to check and see what your annual fee is. If it’s high, this can defeat the purpose of your rewards. Ideally, your goal is to make your rewards outweigh the annual fee. If you can’t do this, you’ll be paying in for a card you may not use that often.
- Interest Rate – Generally, gas credit cards come with a higher interest rate. This is especially true if they’re rewards-style cards, but most rewards cards have higher rates. You can avoid interest by paying off your balance every month. If you don’t carry a balance, you won’t pay interest.
- Rewards Limits – Some gas rewards cards have caps on how many rewards you can earn. This cap usually resets every three months, but it can cut into your rewards. A few of the best gas card options have unlimited rewards. This is useful if you spend a lot and tend to hit caps quickly. This is important when using credit card points to earn cash and free gas. You’ll get more rewards with a card with no limit. No limits on earning gas rewards are especially helpful when gas prices go up.
- Rotating Cash Back Categories – A lot of gas cards come with fixed bonus percentages. However, a few do offer rotating or bonus categories. This rotating category cards can give you up to five percent cash back during certain quarters. Gas credit cards usually transfer this higher cash back to gas station purchases as well.
- Sign-Up Bonus – The best gas card may offer you a sign-up bonus when you open the card. You usually have to spend a certain amount during the first three months to get this bonus. However, the bonus can end up being worth $150 and up. This shouldn’t help you make a decision between cards. But, if you’re deciding between two and the one with the bonus works better, take it.
- Terms and Conditions – If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Unfortunately, the same goes gas reward cards. Make sure that you read the fine print. It’ll tell you all of the miscellaneous fees and important card information you want to know.
Compare Gas Rewards to Find the Best Gas Card
Now that you know what to look for, there are a few other important things you should know. It’s important that you compare best gas reward cards. There are five things you have to know and do to help ensure that you get the best one.
- Know what your credit score is
- Compare the rewards programs and ensure they match your habits
- Compare interest rates and fees between cards
- Check the annual fee
- Pick a card with a low cost and maximum benefits
Gas Rewards – Reviewing Four of the Best Gas Credit Cards
1. Bank of America Cash Rewards Credit Card
This card gives you three percent cash back on gas, two percent for groceries, and one percent on everything else. The Bank of America Cash Rewards Credit Card does have a $2,500 cap, but this starts over every quarter. If you spend $500 during the first three months, you get a $150 sign-up bonus as well.
This card also comes with no annual fee, and this is huge for a rewards card. You’ll pay not APR for the first 12 months, and there are unlimited rewards. This is why this Bank of America credit card made the Credit Fast best gas card list. However, this card does require excellent credit. It also has a higher APR and a foreign transaction fee.
2. Blue Cash Preferred Card
The Blue Cash Preferred Card has straight cashback with no rotating categories. If you spend $1,000 in the first three months, you get a $150 statement credit. It gives you three percent cash back on gas and up to six percent cash back at select supermarkets. There is also a zero percent APR on balance transfers for the first 12 months.
The six percent rewards rate caps at $6,000 per year, and then it restarts. There is also a foreign transaction fee. You’ll pay a $95 annual fee each year for having the card as well. But, it’s a good choice for people who do a lot of grocery shopping. If you want to avoid credit card fees look at the top 5 no annual fee credit cards Credit Fast recommends.
3. Discover it Card
Each quarter; this card rotates rewards categories. In the last two years, gas station purchases got five percent cashback during the first quarter. After the first year, the Discover it Card matches any rewards you earned throughout the year. There are also multiple ways to redeem your rewards, and identity theft monitoring.
You do need credit in the high 600s or low 700s to qualify for this card. As it is Discover, it’s not as widely accepted as MasterCard or Visa. Also, the rotating categories can be difficult to track. You can only earn around $75 per quarter before the rewards cap kicks in as well. Another cash back card is the Chase Freedom® Cash Back Visa which also offers 5% 1st quarter on gas purchases.
4. Discover it Secured Card – One of the Best Gas Cards for Bad Credit
As far as gas cards for bad credit go, the Discover it Secured card is a good option. It only costs $200 to open an account, and people with bad credit qualify. The card also gives quick upgrade opportunities after eight months of on-time payments. You earn two percent cash back at the gas station. This caps at $1,000 but resets every four months.
There is no annual fee with this card, and it’s one of the few secured credit cards with rewards. You get free credit monitoring, and it has an easy application process. It does have an APR around 24.49 percent, but you can avoid this by not carrying a balance. There is also a late payment fee and a balance transfer fee. These are both avoidable though with responsible use.
Bottom Line on Finding the Best Gas Card and Gas Rewards
The best gas card can help you save money and build your credit at the same time. You earn even more gas rewards when gas prices go up. However, choosing the best gas card requires you to do your research. Even if you have bad credit, one of these gas reward cards can help you.
CreditFast has reviewed the benefits of each gas card with a sign-up bonus. We have chosen the best gas card offers based on our editor’s recommendations.