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These Credit Cards Will Help You Save More At The Grocery Store

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 WRITTEN BY: RAJIV BANIWAL

Spending on groceries is a staple across all American households, and the bigger the family, the higher the expense. By using the right credit card to pay for these expenses, you get to maximize your reward-earning potential. A credit card for groceries may offer either a flat earn rate across all purchases or a higher earn rate on spending toward groceries.

MoneyGeek has narrowed down on the best grocery store credit cards after accounting for factors such as reward earn rates and fees.

MoneyGeek’s Take: Top Grocery Credit Cards

Narrowing down on the best credit card for groceries requires paying attention to your individual spending patterns and requirements. We’ve selected the top of the lot after considering aspects such as credit scores required to apply, reward earn rates, annual fees, APRs and additional benefits.

Best Grocery Credit Cards

Experts at MoneyGeek have reviewed and compared the best cards for groceries across parameters such as reward earn rates, annual fees, interest rates and added perks. If we feel there’s a possible drawback you need to know of, we mention it up front.

Disclaimer: Credit card offers are constantly changing. We work hard to stay updated with the latest information, but the offers listed on our site may no longer be available.

1. American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card
  • A great cash back card for gas and grocery shopping
  • Good–Excellent credit needed
  • $95 annual fee
  • 3% cash back rewards rate
  • 6x rewards rate on entertainment
  • 6x rewards rate on groceries
Pros
  • 0% intro APR for the first year
  • Annual fee waived for the first year
  • Generous welcome offer
  • Cash back up to 6% on select categories
  • Use earned cash back as a statement credit
Cons
  • High annual fee
  • Foreign transaction fee
  • Cash advance fee
  • Penalty APR may apply in cases of late and returned payments
  • Cannot use cash back to pay minimum due
  • 6% cash back on groceries applies to $6,000 worth of spending in a calendar year — then it becomes 1%
  • Advanced cash back rates apply only on purchases made in the U.S.
The Perks
  • Get 6% cash back at supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in spending, followed by 1%.
  • Get 6% cash back on select streaming subscriptions.
  • Get 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and on transit (trains, buses, taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, etc.).
  • Get 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Redeem reward dollars as statement credit.
  • Benefit through intro APR, annual fee and bonus cash back offers.
  • Use the Pay It method for purchases under $100 and make payments through the month.
  • Use the Plan It method for purchases over $100. Split them up into monthly payments with fixed monthly fees and no interest.
  • Get added peace of mind through car rental loss and damage insurance, return protection and fraud protection.
  • Use the American Express Experiences platform and access presale tickets and member-only events.
2. Citi Premier Card
  • An excellent travel rewards card for international use
  • Excellent Credit needed
  • $95 annual fee
  • 1–3 points per $1 rewards rate
  • 3x rewards rate at hotels
  • 3x rewards rate on groceries
Pros
  • Opportunity to earn a sizeable sign-up bonus
  • 3x points for travel purchases and on a few other categories
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Transfer points to popular frequent flyer programs or redeem them in other ways
  • $100 hotel savings benefit each year
Cons
  • Annual fee of $95
  • No complimentary insurance
  • No purchase protection
  • Cash advance and balance transfer fees
  • Penalty APR may apply in case of a late or returned payment
The Perks
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points if you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months (valued at $800 when you redeem them for gift cards).
  • Earn 3x points on air travel, on hotel bookings, at gas stations, at supermarkets and at restaurants.
  • Earn 1x points on all other purchases.
  • Get $100 off a hotel stay of $500 or more (excluding fees and taxes) when you book through thankyou.com (online or over the phone).
  • Transfer your points to airline loyalty programs such as Aeromexico, Asia Miles, Avianca LifeMiles, Emirates Skywards, Etihad Guest, Flying Blue, InterMiles, JetBlue TrueBlue, Malaysia Airlines Enrich, Qantas Frequent Flyer, Qatar Privilege Club, Singapore Airlines, Thai Royal Orchid Plus, Miles & Smiles and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.
  • Other ways to redeem your points include getting gift cards, shopping online, paying for travel, getting statement credits, making online bill payments and making charitable donations.
  • Pay no foreign transaction fees when you use this card internationally.
  • Additional cards come with no annual fees.
  • Access to Citi Entertainment gives you the means to buy tickets to various events as well as presale tickets.
3. Citi Rewards+ Card
  • An excellent no-annual-fee rewards card with a 0% intro APR offer
  • Excellent credit needed
  • $0 annual fee
  • 1–2 points per $1 rewards rrate
  • 2x rewards rate on gas
  • 2x rewards rate on groceries
Pros
  • Pay no annual fees for as long as your account remains active
  • Get 20,000 bonus points if you spend $1,500 on purchases within three months from account opening
  • Pay no interest on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months
  • Earn 10% points back for the first 100,000 points you redeem every year
  • Round up to the nearest 10 points on each purchase — this way, even a $5 purchase earns 10 points
  • Redeem points for gift cards, travel rewards or to shop at Amazon and Best Buy
  • Get access to Citi Entertainment
Cons
  • International transaction fees
  • Cash advance and balance transfers fees
  • Penalty APR might apply in case of late and returned payments
The Perks
  • $0 annual fees for the life of the card
  • Spend $1,500 on purchases in the first three months to earn 20,000 bonus points
  • 0% APR offer on purchases and balance transfers stays in place for the first 15 months
  • 10% points back on up to 100,000 points you redeem each year
  • Points round up to the nearest 10 for every purchase
  • Use your points to shop at Best Buy or Amazon
  • Redeeming points for gift and travel cards is possible
  • Use Citi Entertainment and get access to tickets of special events, including exclusive experiences and presale tickets
4. Capital One SavorOne Rewards
  • A great no-annual-fee card that comes with rewards
  • Good–Excellent credit needed
  • $0 annual fee
  • 3% cash back rewards rate
  • 3x rewards rate on entertainment
  • 2x rewards rate on groceries
Pros
  • No annual fees
  • Earn 3% cash back on entertainment, dining, popular streaming services and at grocery stores
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Get 8% cash back when you book tickets through Vivid Seats until Jan. 31, 2023
  • Earn a $200 cash bonus if you spend $500 on purchases within the first three months
  • Earn unlimited cash back that does not expire for the life of the card
  • Redeem cash back in the form of a statement credit or a check
  • You may also use your cash back rewards through PayPal and Amazon.com
  • Pay no foreign transaction fees
  • Get complimentary extended warranty, travel accident insurance, 24-hour travel assistance services and concierge services
  • Get protection against unauthorized use of your card through $0 fraud liability
  • Get special access to premier culinary experiences as well as music and sporting events
Cons
  • The APR that applies on purchases after the first 15 months is based on your creditworthiness
  • Cash advance fee
  • Balance transfer fee
The Perks
  • $0 annual fee
  • 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months
  • Unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Get a $200 bonus after spending $500 on purchases in the first three months
  • Redeem your cash back as a statement credit, as a check or through Amazon.com or PayPal
  • Credit rating-dependant APR on purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Complimentary travel accident insurance and access to 24-hour travel assistance services
  • Complimentary 24-hour access to concierge services
  • Purchases made using card protected by extended warranty
  • $0 fraud liability to safeguard against fraudulent use
5. Citi Double Cash Card
  • A great no-annual-fee card that offers up to 2% cash back
  • Excellent credit needed
  • $0 annual fee
  • 2% cash back rewards rate
  • 2x rewards rate on gas
  • 2x rewards rate on groceries
Pros
  • Pay no annual fees
  • Earn 2% cash back on purchases across all categories — 1% when you make a purchase and 1% when you make your payment on time
  • No caps on earning cash back
  • Options to redeem cash back rewards include a statement credit, direct deposit, check or conversion to points
  • Pay 0% APR on balance transfers for the first 18 months
  • Purchase tickets to scores of events, including presale tickets, through Citi Entertainment
  • Increased account safety through 24-hour fraud protection and $0 liability on unauthorized charges
  • Complimentary Lost Wallet service and identity theft solutions
Cons
  • Cash back rewards expire if you do not earn any cash back from purchases or payments for those purchases in a 12-month period
  • Foreign transaction fees
  • Cash advance fees
  • Balance transfer fees
  • Penalty APR applies in case of late and returned payments
The Perks
  • $0 annual fees
  • Up to 2% unlimited cash back on purchases
  • Redeem cash back rewards as a statement credit, a check or a direct deposit
  • Converting cash back rewards to Thank You points is an option
  • Intro 0% APR offer on balance transfers for the first 18 months
  • Get access to presale tickets via Citi Entertainment
  • 24-hour fraud protection, $0 liability on unauthorized charges and identity theft solutions provide added peace of mind
  • Get emergency cash through the lost wallet service
  • Foreign transaction fees apply on international transactions
How We Rank Grocery Credit Cards

Our lists of the best credit cards are based on publicly available data from card issuers and other reputable sources like the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB). We review each card’s fees, interest rates, rewards, benefits and more to assign a rating for each feature. These ratings are stack ranked and weighted for each card category to determine our top selections for each type of user. Because card details change regularly, we revisit our data each month to update our ratings, recommendations and other card information as needed.

Learn more about our data collection and ranking process.

Quick Tips for Comparing Grocery Credit Card Offers

Comparing grocery credit cards requires paying attention to multiple aspects. For instance, getting a credit card with reward miles might limit your options when it comes to redeeming your miles for rewards.

  • Creditworthiness: The best credit cards for groceries are typically made available for people with good to excellent credit scores. However, people with average/fair credit also get options from which to choose. These include the Capital One QuicksilverOne Rewards Card, the Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa Card and the Petal 2 Visa Credit Card.
  • Reward earn rate: While some cards offer higher cash back/reward earn rates on grocery shopping, you need to determine if they come with annual limits. For example, the 6% cash back on groceries at U.S. supermarkets from the American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card applies only to the first $6,000 in grocery purchases each year. All the money you spend after this limit comes with 1% cash back. The Capital One SavorOne Rewards Card, on the other hand, lets you earn unlimited 3% cash back at grocery stores.
  • Annual fee: This aspect requires your attention if you don’t see yourself spending too much on groceries throughout the year. For example, if a 2% cash back card comes with a $99 annual fee, you’ll need to spend at least $4,950 on eligible purchases through the course of the year just to offset the fee. You’ll have to spend even more to catch up to other cards that don’t charge an annual fee.
  • APR: You need to look at a card’s annual percentage rate (APR) if you don’t plan to pay off your balances in full each month. If you’re going to keep revolving balances in your account, you might be better off focusing on low APR cards instead of a rewards credit card.
  • Introductory offers: The best grocery credit cards tend to come with spending-based introductory offers that let you earn reward points, miles or cash back. For example, a card might offer 20,000 reward points if you spend $1,500 on purchases within three months from account opening.
  • Added perks: Added perks that you may expect from different grocery rewards and cash back cards include statement credits toward payments to specific service providers, free additional cards, complimentary insurance coverage, travel-related benefits and extended warranties.
MoneyGeek’s Quick Guide to Understanding Grocery Credit Cards

A grocery card lets you earn rewards or cash back when you spend money on purchasing groceries. Just like regular credit cards, grocery credit cards come with eligibility requirements that might be based on your creditworthiness and income.

Using a grocery credit card makes sense if you wish to make the most of your grocery spending by earning cash back or rewards. While some such cards offer rewards across all eligible grocery store purchases, a few others offer higher reward earn rates when you spend through particular supermarkets.

Also keep in mind that although you may buy groceries at Walmart or Target, some credit cards exclude purchases from those stores from qualifying for grocery store bonus rewards.

How Do Grocery Credit Cards Work?

Grocery credit cards give cardholders the ability to earn points, cash back or miles when they spend on groceries. In many such cases, cards list groceries as a bonus category, through which you get to earn higher-than-usual rewards/cash back. Some grocery cards place caps on maximum spending amounts that qualify for higher earn rates per quarter or year. Depending on the card you get, it might come with other bonus categories such as gas, dining, entertainment and travel.

If you get a co-branded grocery card, the higher earn rate might apply only when you make purchases at the store in question. For example, the Capital One Walmart Rewards Card offers 5% cash back at Walmart.com; 2% cash back at Walmart stores, travel and restaurants; and 1% cash back on all other purchases. This is also the case with Costco credit cards by Citi that offer higher earn rates on Costco purchases than at other big-box retail or grocery stores.

While redeeming the cash back you earn through a grocery credit card is fairly simple, this is not necessarily the case with points or miles. For instance, if you get a co-branded credit card, you might have to redeem your rewards through the merchant in question.

What Store are Considered a Grocery Store for Credit Cards?

Stores that are considered grocery stores for credit cards vary based on any given card’s issuer. For instance, while American Express excludes warehouse clubs and superstores such as Costco from the grocery store category, this is not the case with Bank of America cards.

Considered
  • American Express: U.S. supermarkets that offer food and household products
  • Bank of America: Supermarkets, grocery stores and wholesale clubs
  • Capital One: Supermarkets and grocery stores; meat locker, freezer and dairy product stores; and specialty markets
  • Chase: Supermarkets, grocery stores and stores that offer extensive lines of grocery products
  • Citi: Supermarkets and grocery stores
  • Discover: Supermarkets and grocery stores
Not Considered
  • American Express: Convenience stores, specialty stores, superstores and warehouse clubs
  • Capital One: Superstores
  • Chase: Warehouse clubs, discount stores, drugstores, stores that specialize in a limited number of grocery products, grocery purchases made at gas stations and delivery service merchants
  • Citi: General merchandise/discount superstores, warehouse clubs, wholesale clubs, markets, freezer/meat locker stores, dairy product stores, miscellaneous food/convenience stores, drugstores, specialty vendors, meal kit delivery services and some online supermarkets
  • Discover: Warehouse clubs, superstores, discount stores, convenience stores, gas stations and purchases made via third-party payment apps/accounts
Are Grocery Store Credit Cards Worth It?

According to data released by Statista, the average U.S. household food expenditure stood at $7,316 in 2020. If you were to use a grocery credit card with 3% cash back, spending the average amount would earn you $219.48 as cash back. If you pay no annual fee toward this card and pay off your balances in full each month, all the cash back you earn is a bonus.

If you favor any one particular chain of stores over others, you might consider getting a co-branded grocery card to maximize your reward-earning potential. In such a scenario, you may benefit by using a cash back card with a flat or high earn rate for all other purchases. If you wish to earn higher rewards on gas purchases, too, you may look for a grocery card that also includes gas as a bonus category. The Citi Premier Card fits the bill of a good credit card for gas and groceries, given that it offers 3x points on both categories.

If you plan to get a grocery credit card with an annual fee, it would be worth your while only if you earn enough rewards/cash back to offset its cost. Grocery credit cards, like other rewards cards, tend to come with higher APRs than cards without rewards. As a result, if you plan to maintain revolving balances in your credit card account, you might benefit more by getting a low APR card.

How can Points or Cash Back Earned from Grocery Purchases be Used?

How you get to redeem the points or cash back you earn through a grocery credit card depends not just on your card provider but also on the specific card.

For instance, the Citi Premier Card and the Citi Rewards+ Card let you redeem your points for gift cards, travel rewards and for shopping online at Amazon.com or BestBuy.com. However, while you may transfer the points you earn through the Citi Premier Card to partner airline frequent flyer programs, this is not an option with the Citi Rewards+ Card.

Citi lets you redeem the cash back you earn through the Double Cash Card as a statement credit, a direct deposit or a check, and also lets you convert it to points. However, with the same bank’s Costco Anywhere Visa Card, you may get the cash back you earn as an annual credit card reward certificate. This certificate can be redeemed for cash or merchandise at Costco Warehouses in the U.S., including Puerto Rico.

You may redeem the cash back you earn through the SavorOne Rewards Card from Capital One in the form of a statement credit or a check. Setting up automatic redemptions is possible and is a convenient way to redeem cash back rewards. You may also use your cash back to shop at Amazon.com or via PayPal.

Related:

This article originally appeared on MoneyGeek.com and was syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

Republished with permission on SouthFloridaReporter.com, Jan. 7, 2022

MediaFeed is an independent digital media site run by experienced journalists and content strategists. We produce, publish and distribute content in a variety of verticals, including travel, money, lifestyle, food, health, small business, auto, entertainment and tech. MediaFeed articles regularly appear on MSN.com and throughout its contributor network.

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