Bank-issued charge cards first originated in 1946 when a Brooklyn banker named John Biggins launched the “Charg-It” card. Charg-It card purchases were forwarded to Biggins’ bank, where he reimbursed the merchant and would later obtain payment from the customer in what came to be known as the “closed-loop” system.
Fast forward to 1950 which saw the debut of the Diners Club Card. The Diners Club Card claims the title of the first credit card in widespread use, and while it’s purchases were made on credit, the Diners Club was technically a charge card, meaning the bill had to be paid in full at the end of each month. The card became quite popular, and by the end of 1951, Diners Club had over 20,000 cardholders.
When the original American Express card first launched in 1958, charge cards were rapidly becoming mainstream. In 1959, American Express was the first company to introduce a plastic card, replacing the older cardboard and celluloid cards. Within just 5 years, 1 million American Express cards were in use at over 85,000 merchants.
According to The Nilson Report, there are a total of 1.06 billion credit cards (as of 2017), with close to 1.2 billion cards projected to be in use by 2022. In 2018, there were 41 billion total credit card transactions in the U.S., amounting to $3.8 trillion in purchase volume — over $10.4 billion per day.
In this post, we outline 15 of the largest credit card companies (measured by their number of active credit card accounts), along with some history and facts about the company, and some of our favorite credit cards that they offer.
Card Networks vs. Credit Card Companies
Before we dive in, it is important to make a distinction between a card network and a credit card company.
A credit card company is, put simply, any company that issues credit cards, whether that be a bank, a credit union, or anything in between. So what is a card network, then? When you hear the words “card network,” think about companies like Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover.
Card networks work with credit card processors to transport your transaction data between the issuing bank and the merchant you’ve made your purchase with. The card networks are also responsible for setting their interchange and assessment fees.
While each network sets its fees, it does not collect all of them. The interchange fees, which are the largest cost involved in credit card processing, are passed onto the issuing bank.
Now you may be wondering, “If companies like American Express and Discover are card networks, how do they also issue credit cards?” A company can be both a credit card network and a credit card issuer.
Due to this, credit cards on the Amex and Discover networks are mostly issued exclusively by those 2 companies (with a few exceptions). Meanwhile, a card on the Visa or Mastercard network could be issued by any other credit card company, as Visa and Mastercard do not issue their credit cards.
Make sense? Great! Now let’s do a deep dive into each U.S. major credit card company and network!
American Express, also known as Amex, was founded in 1850 and is best known for its charge cards and credit card products.
In 2016, credit cards using the American Express network accounted for 22.9% of the total dollar volume of U.S. credit card transactions. Amex is the largest issuer of charge cards and the third-largest credit card network in the U.S. As of December 2018, the company had 114 million cards in circulation, including 53.7 million cards in the U.S., each with average annual spending of $19,340.
In 2017, Forbes named American Express as the twenty-third most valuable brand in the world (and the highest within financial services), estimating the brand to be worth $24.5 billion. In 2018, Fortune ranked American Express as the fourteenth most admired company worldwide.
|Founded||March 18, 1850||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||New York City||CEO||Stephen J. Squeri|
|Revenue (2018)||$36.986 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$8.164 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||59,000||Total Assets (2018)||$188.602 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||53.7 million||Logo||Gladiator/Centurion|
Our Favorite Amex Cards
The Platinum Card® from American Express
Without question, the most popular and recognizable American Express card is the Amex Platinum Card. The card is branded as a symbol of status and luxury but isn’t as difficult to be approved for as you may think.
The Amex Platinum is easily one of the best travel credit cards on the market with 5x earnings on airfare and Amex Travel bookings, combined with incredible travel benefits like hotel elite status, trip delay insurance, Uber and airline incidental credits, and best-in-class airport lounge access.
American Express Gold® Card
Playing second fiddle to the Amex Platinum is Amex Gold card, its second most popular card. The Amex Gold card is perfect for those who want a powerful point earning card at a lower annual fee.
The Amex Gold card rewards cardholders with benefits like 4x points per $1 at restaurants including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets, 3x on airfare, a monthly dining credit with GrubHub/Seamless or select restaurants.
Hot Tip: Many American Express credit card ads feature a sample American Express Card with the name “C. F. Frost” on the front. This is not a fabricated name; Charles F. Frost was an advertising executive at Ogilvy & Mather, the ad agency that coined the popular “Don’t Leave Home Without Them” campaign.
Bank of America
The Bank of America Corporation (abbreviated as BofA) is an American multinational investment bank and financial services company based in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is the second-largest banking institution in the U.S., after JPMorgan Chase.
As of August 2018, Bank of America had a $313.5 billion market capitalization, making it the thirteenth-largest company in the world. Bank of America was ranked #24 on the 2018 Fortune 500 rankings of the largest U.S. corporations by total revenue.
Bank of America is more widely known for their consumer banking and investment products, but they still have over 54.6 million credit cards in circulation.
|Founded||February 1784||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||Charlotte, N.C.||CEO||Brian Moynihan|
|Revenue (2018)||$91.24 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$34.6 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||205,000||Total Assets (2018)||$2.325 trillion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||54.6 million||Logo||U.S. flag|
Our Favorite Bank of America Cards
Bank of America® Premium Rewards® Card
Aptly named, the Premium Rewards card was Bank of America’s foray into the premium travel rewards card market. Cardholders earn 2x points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and 1.5x points per $1 on all other purchases. The points are worth a fixed 1 cent per point towards travel or cash-back.
An innovative feature of the card allows you to earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase depending on your level of investments with Bank of America. Cardholders who have at least a combined $100,000 in assets on deposit with Bank of America can earn up to 3.5x points on travel and dining purchases and up to 2.62x points on all other purchases.
Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Credit Card
You may be surprised to see a co-branded airline credit card listed here, but the Alaska Signature card is one of the best airline cards on the market, mainly due to how valuable Alaska miles can be.
Cardholders earn 3x miles for every $1 spent on eligible Alaska Airlines purchases, 50% off day passes at the Alaska Lounge, and 20% back on all Alaska Airlines inflight purchases. Each account anniversary you’ll receive a companion fare for just $121 valid on all Alaska flights.
Hot Tip: Bank of America operates 4,800 retail financial centers and approximately 15,900 ATMs nationwide.
Barclays is a British multinational investment bank and financial services company headquartered in London. Barclays launched the first U.K. credit card program in 1966 and it moved into the U.S. market in 2004.
Barclays is best known for its travel rewards credit cards and co-branded credit cards, especially their partnerships with American Airlines, JetBlue, and Lufthansa. While their presence is much smaller than many other banks, Barclays still has over 15 million cards in circulation.
|Founded||November 1690||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||London, U.K.||CEO||Jes Stanley|
|Revenue (2018)||$27.11 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$4.48 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||79,900||Total Assets (2018)||$1.145 trillion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||15.7 million||Logo||Eagle|
Our Favorite Barclays Cards
While the AAdvantage Aviator Red card might not be the best option for your airfare purchase, it can be a solid keeper card for those who frequently fly American Airlines.
Cardholders receive great perks when flying American, like their first checked bag free, priority boarding, 25% inflight savings as statement credits on food and beverages, and $25 back as a statement credit on inflight Wi-Fi purchases.
Hot Tip: Be aware of Barclays 6/24 rule, which may cause you to be rejected from their cards if you have more than 6 new accounts in the last 24 months.
Capital One is a bank holding company specializing in credit cards, auto loans, banking, and savings accounts, headquartered in McLean, Virginia. Capital One is ranked tenth on the list of largest banks in the U.S. by assets, ninety-eighth on the Fortune 500, and the fifth-largest credit card issuer by purchase volume.
Despite its short history, Capital One has certainly made a name for itself in the credit card market with its suite of different card offerings. In fact, in the fourth quarter of 2018, 75% of the company’s revenues were from it’s over 89 million credit cards in circulation.
|Founded||1994||Areas Served ||U.S., Canada, U.K.|
|Headquarters||McLean, Va.||CEO||Richard Fairbank|
|Revenue (2018)||$28.06 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$5.710 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||48,800||Total Assets (2018)||$372.538 trillion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||89.4 million||Logo||Capital One|
Our Favorite Capital One Cards
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Card
You’ve likely seen dozens of commercials for the Venture card before, advertising it’s unlimited 2x miles per $1 on every purchase and all earned miles can now be transferred to one of the Capital One transfer partners — unlocking huge value!
Capital One® Savor® Rewards Credit Card
The CapOne Savor card is a compelling cash-back card that earns 4% cash-back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores, and a whopping 8% back on tickets through Vivid Seats (through May 2020).
Cardholders also benefit from perks like no foreign transaction fees, extended warranty on purchases, and travel accident insurance.
fact: Capital One started as a monoline bank, meaning that all of its revenue came from a single product (in this case, credit cards). The company helped pioneer the mass marketing of credit cards in the 1990s.
Credit One is a U.S.-based bank specializing in credit cards. Their corporate office is located in Las Vegas and they are a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sherman Financial Group, LLC. Credit One focuses primarily on 2 types of products, partially and fully secured credit cards, and currently has 7 million cards in circulation in the U.S.
|Founded||1984||Areas Served ||U.S.|
|Headquarters||Las Vegas||CEO||Robert DeJong|
|Revenue (2016)||$465.53 million||Operating Income (2016)||$109.94 million|
|Employees (2018) ||625||Total Assets (2016)||$236.06 million|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||7 million||Logo||Credit One|
Our Favorite Credit One Card
Credit One Platinum Cash-Back Rewards
This no annual fee card offers 1% cash-back on all purchases, plus up to 10% cash-back with participating merchants. Cardholders also receive free online access to their Experian credit score, so you can monitor your credit health and track your progress.
Hot Tip: For the most part, credit cards from Credit One are marketed towards individuals who have zero credit or need to repair their credit. If you do not fall into either of those categories then it’s likely you can get a much better card from one of the other issuers mentioned in this post.
JPMorgan Chase Bank, headquartered in New York City, is the largest bank in the U.S. by total deposits. The bank was known as Chase Manhattan Bank until it merged with J.P. Morgan & Co. in 2000. The bank now employs more than 250,000 people and does business in 100+ countries.
Chase is a giant in the credit card world, with over 92 million cards in circulation, making up 31.% of the overall credit card revenue market share. Chase has excellent variety when it comes to their credit card products, from their suite of Ultimate Reward earning cards to their various co-branded partnerships with companies like United, Marriott, and Southwest.
|Founded||1977||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||New York City||CEO||Jamie Dimon|
|Revenue (2018)||$109.029 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$32.474 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||250,355||Total Assets (2018)||$2.623 trillion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||92 million||Logo||Connected water pipes|
Our Favorite Chase Cards
Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card
The Chase Sapphire Reserve card is one of the top travel rewards cards on the market due to its combination of point earning and travel benefits.
Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders earn 5x points on air travel and 10x points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, plus 3x points on all other travel, a $300 annual travel credit, a $100 Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit, a Priority Pass membership, and best-in-class travel protections.
Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
For business owners, the Ink Business Preferred card is one of the best business credit cards (and probably our favorite Chase business credit card) — a stellar option that earns 3x points per $1 on up to $150,000 in combined purchases on travel, shipping, advertising purchases made with social media sites or search engines, internet, cable, and phones services.
The Ink Business Preferred card is also one of the few cards to offer up to $600 per claim in cell phone protection against covered theft or damage for you and your employees listed on your monthly cell phone bill when you pay it with your card.
fact: When Chase launched the Chase Sapphire Reserve card in 2016, the demand for the card was so high that Chase ran out of the metal required to make the card!
Be aware of the Chase 5/24 rule! If you’ve opened more than 5 new credit cards in the last 24 months, Chase will almost certainly not approve you for most of their credit cards.
Citigroup Inc., or Citi, is an American multinational investment bank and financial services corporation headquartered in New York City. Citigroup is ranked third on the list of largest banks in the U.S. and is ranked thirtieth on the Fortune 500 as of 2018.
Another major player in the credit card world, Citi currently has over 67 million cards in circulation, made of up of their namesake Citi ThankYou cards and co-branded cards with strategic partners like American Airlines.
|Founded||1812||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||New York City||CEO||Michael Corbat|
|Revenue (2018)||$72.854 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$23.445 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||204,000||Total Assets (2018)||$1.917 trillion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||67 million||Logo||Citi|
Our Favorite CitiBank Cards
Citi Prestige® Card
Hot Tip: At this time, the Citi Prestige card is no longer available for new applicants.
While quite a few benefits have been removed from the card recently, the Citi Prestige can still be quite valuable for those who can take advantage of the 5x Citi ThankYou points on airfare and dining purchases, $250 travel credit, Priority Pass Membership, and the fourth-night-free hotel benefit that can be used twice per year.
Citi® Double Cash Card
The Citi Double Cash is touted as one of the best cash-back credit cards on the market due to its ability to earn 2% cash-back; 1% when you buy and another 1% as you pay. The card offers no caps on cash-back and no annual fee.
Better yet, Citi recently announced that your cash-back rewards can now be transferred into Citi ThankYou points, allowing you to earn 2x ThankYou points on all purchases for every $1 you spend.
This change makes the card an industry leader when it comes to non-bonused spend, and will allow you to rack up ThankYou points fast that you can redeem for huge value!
Hot Tip: Citibank has a few different rules that determine whether or you will be eligible for their credit cards. Read all out them in our dedicated guide!
Founded in 1985 as a subsidiary of Sears, it wasn’t until 2007 that Discover was spun off as an independent, publicly-traded company. Today, Discover is the country’s seventh-largest credit card issuer and fourth-largest card network, based on purchase volume.
When the Discover card was first launched, it offered consumers a small rebate on all their purchases, making it one of the first cash-back cards ever offered in the U.S.
Today, Discover still holds that reputation of a company that primarily offers cash-back cards, and with over 50 million cards in circulation, you could say they’ve been quite successful.
|Founded||1985||Areas Served ||U.S.|
|Revenue (2018)||$10.6 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$4.1 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||15,549||Total Assets (2018)||$32.5 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||52 million||Logo||Discover|
Our Favorite Discover Cards
Discover it® Cash Back Card
The Discover Cash-Back card is easily Discover’s most popular card offering, and you’ve likely seen several commercials advertising the card and its “cash-back match” program.
The Discover Cash-Back card offers 5% cash-back at different merchants each quarter (up to the quarterly maximum of $1,500) plus an unlimited 1% cash-back on all other purchases.
To increase those savings even further, Discover will automatically match all the cash-back you’ve earned at the end of your first year, with no limit to how much they’ll match. This effectively allows you to earn 10% back on purchases within the quarterly bonus category and 2% back on all other purchases for your first year of card membership.
Discover it® Miles Card
With the Discover Miles card, you’ll earn an unlimited 1.5x miles for every dollar spent on all purchases. Unlike airline miles, these miles are worth a fixed 1 cent per point when you redeem them towards travel.
Similar to the Discover Cash-Back card, Discover will automatically match all the miles you earn at the end of your first year. This effectively allows you to earn 3x miles on all purchases for your first year of card membership.
Mastercard, founded in 1966 and headquartered in Purchase, New York, is the second-largest credit card network in the world with over 200 million cards in circulation worldwide. Throughout the world, it’s business model is to process payments between the banks of merchants and the card-issuing banks or credit unions of the purchasers who use a Mastercard brand debit card, credit card, or prepaid card to make purchases.
|Founded||1966||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||Purchase, N.Y.||CEO||Ajaypal Singh Banga|
|Revenue (2018)||$12.497 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$6.662 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||13,400||Total Assets (2018)||$21.329 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||200 million||Logo||Red/orange Venn diagram|
Our Favorite Mastercards
Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard®
The AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite card offers 2x miles per $1 for all American Airlines spending and with restaurants and gas stations. You’ll also get preferred boarding, your first checked bag free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 4 companions on the reservation, and 25% off inflight food and beverage purchases made with the card.
IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
The IHG Premier card earns 25x points per $1 when you stay at an IHG hotel and 2x points at grocery stores, gas stations, and restaurants. Cardholders get automatic Platinum Elite status with IHG, their fourth night free on award stays, plus a free anniversary night certificate valid at properties costing 40,000 points or less per night on each account anniversary.
Hot Tip: Mastercard makes up over 31% of the card network market share in the world.
PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is ranked ninth on the list of largest banks in the U.S. by assets. PNC is the fifth-largest bank by number of branches, sixth largest by deposits, and fourth-largest in number of ATMs. PNC’s credit card offerings are rather small in comparison to other issuers, with just 5 million cards in circulation.
|Founded||1845||Areas Served ||U.S.|
|Revenue (2018)||$16.329 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$5.338 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||52,906||Total Assets (2018)||$380.768 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||5 million||Logo||Golden triangle|
Our Favorite PNC Cards
PNC Cash Rewards® Visa® Credit Card
With the PNC Cash Rewards card, you’ll earn 4% back on gas station purchases, 3% on dining purchases, 2% on grocery store purchases, and 1% on all other purchases for the first $8,000 in combined purchases in these categories annually.
PNC Premier Traveler® Visa Signature® Credit Card
The PNC Premier Traveler card offers cardholders 2x miles for every $1 spent on all purchases, and no foreign transaction fees on purchases. Your PNC miles are worth a fixed 1 cent per point when you redeem them as a statement credit for travel purchases.
Hot Tip: The name “PNC” is derived from the initials of both of the bank’s 2 predecessor companies: Pittsburgh National Corporation and Provident National Corporation, which merged in 1983.
Synchrony Financial, founded in 2003, and headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, is known for being the largest provider of private label credit cards in the U.S. The company provides private-label credit cards for such brands as Ashley HomeStores, BP, Cathay Pacific, Discount Tire, Gap, Guitar Center, J.C. Penney, Lowe’s, and many more. In fact, if you’ve ever opened a store credit card, odds are that it was issued by Synchrony.
|Founded||2003||Areas Served ||U.S.|
|Headquarters||Stamford, Conn.||CEO||Margaret Keane|
|Revenue (2018)||$14.8 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$2.79 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||16,500||Total Assets (2018)||$106.792 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||36.7 million||Logo||Golden bars|
Our Favorite Synchrony Cards
Cathay Pacific Visa
The Cathay Pacific Visa card is easily the best travel rewards card that Synchrony has to offer. It earns 2x miles per dollar on purchases with Cathay Pacific, 1.5x miles per dollar on dining purchases in the U.S. or abroad, 1.5x miles per dollar on other purchases abroad, and 1x mile per dollar on other domestic purchases.
Cathay Pacific Asia miles can be very valuable when redeemed for trips on Cathay Pacific and their partners.
Amazon Prime Store Card
The Amazon Prime Store Card offers 5% cash-back on all purchases on Amazon. This makes the card extremely valuable to those who are frequent Amazon shoppers. Keep in mind that you must have an eligible Amazon Prime membership to receive the 5% cash-back on your purchases.
Hot Tip: Synchrony Bank offers over 100+ different credit card options to their customers.
The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) was founded in 1922 by a group of 25 U.S. Army officers for mutual self-insurance when they were unable to secure auto insurance due to the perception that military officers were a high-risk group.
USAA has since expanded to offer banking and insurance services to past and present members of the Armed Forces and their families. The company ranked #100 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest U.S. corporations by total revenue and currently has over 12.4 million members.
|Founded||1922||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||San Antonio||CEO||Capt. Stuart Parker|
|Revenue (2018)||$30.016 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$2.422 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||32,896||Total Assets (2018)||$155.391 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||7.7 million||Logo||Eagle|
Our Favorite USAA Card
Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card
The Cashback Rewards Plus card earns 5% cash-back on your first $3,000 in combined gas station and military base purchases yearly, 2% cash-back on your first $3,000 in grocery purchases yearly, and unlimited 1% cash-back on all other purchases.
If your spending needs would require you to hit the annual cap on both gas stations and grocery stores, using this card would earn you $210 in cash-back!
For more options, check out all of the USAA credit cards and rewards options.
Hot Tip: USAA is the eleventh largest credit card issuer in the U.S. by purchase volume and outstanding balances.
U.S. Bank National Association is the fifth-largest bank in the U.S. and the sixth-largest credit card issuer based on purchase volume. The company offers many co-branded credit cards with corporate partners like Ace, Club Carlson, Harley-Davidson, and Kroger. U.S. Bank rewards cards are also offered under the company’s FlexPerks brand name.
|Founded||1968||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Revenue (2018)||$22.057 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$6.218 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||72,402||Total Assets (2018)||$462.04 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||21 million||Logo||U.S. Bank|
Our Favorite U.S. Bank Cards
U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card
While the U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve card is only open to those who have a preexisting relationship with U.S. Bank, it’s a fantastic option for those who are eligible. Cardholders earn 3x points for every $1 on travel purchases and mobile wallet spending, a $325 annual statement credit for travel purchases, a Priority Pass membership, and 12 complimentary Gogo Inflight Wi-Fi passes per year.
U.S. Bank Cash 365™ American Express Card
The Cash 365 card is a straightforward cash-back card that offers an unlimited 1.5% back on every purchase, all with no annual fee. You can receive your cash-back in a variety of ways, including as a deposit to your U.S. Bank checking or savings account, a statement credit on your monthly bill, or a prepaid Visa rewards card.
Hot Tip: U.S. Bank operates under the second-oldest continuous national charter, originally Charter #24, granted in 1863.
Visa is a credit card network that facilitates electronic funds transfers throughout the world, most commonly through Visa-branded credit cards, gift cards, and debit cards. Visa does not issue any of its own cards or extend credit. Visa is the U.S. largest card payment organization, and the world’s second-largest (debit and credit cards combined), surpassed only by China UnionPay, based on the annual value of card payments transacted and the number of issued cards.
|Founded||1961||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||Foster City, Calif.||CEO||Alfred Kelley|
|Revenue (2018)||$20.609 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$13.749 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||17,000||Total Assets (2018)||$69.225 billion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||335 million||Logo||Visa|
Our Favorite Visa Cards
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
|Credit Card||Benefits & Info|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card|
(at Chase's secure site)
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
- Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself BackSM, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash’s subscription service. Activate by 03/31/22.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
- Good to Excellent Credit Recommended (670-850)
- Annual Fee: $95
Must Reads: For more info on the Chase Sapphire Preferred, see our thoughts on its benefits and travel insurance coverage, which includes primary car rental insurance. Take a look at our full review to see why it’s one of our favorite cards.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is one of the most popular travel rewards cards on the market, and with benefits like 3x points on dining and 2x on travel, no foreign transaction fees, and flexible redemption options (including transfer partners), it’s easy to see why. The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is one of our top picks for people who are brand new to the world of points and miles!
Chase Freedom Flex℠ Credit Card
The Freedom Flex card earns 5% back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter, with no annual fee. The card can be extremely valuable when paired with a premium Chase Ultimate Reward earning card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve card or Chase Sapphire Preferred card. This allows you to use the points earned with your Freedom Flex card for one of the many Chase transfer partners.
Hot Tip: In 2015, The Nilson Report, a publication that tracks the credit card industry, found that Visa’s global network processed 100 billion transactions during 2014 with a total volume of $6.8 trillion.
Wells Fargo, founded in 1852, is the world’s fourth-largest bank by both market capitalization and total assets, as well as ranked number 26 on the 2018 Fortune 500.
While Wells Fargo’s present in the credit card market is nearly as large as the other big 4 banks (Chase, Citi, and Bank of America), it is the eighth-largest credit card issuer in the U.S. with over 24 million cards in circulation.
|Founded||1852||Areas Served ||Worldwide|
|Headquarters||San Francisco||CEO||Charles Scharf|
|Revenue (2018)||$86.4 billion||Operating Income (2018)||$30.28 billion|
|Employees (2018) ||258,700||Total Assets (2018)||$1.895 trillion|
|Cards in Circulation (2018)||24 million||Logo||Wells Fargo|
Our Favorite Wells Fargo Card
Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card
With the Wells Fargo Propel card, you’ll earn 3x points on dining, gas, travel (including hotels and rideshares), and on popular streaming services like Netflix and Spotify. The card also features no foreign transaction fees, plus $600 of cell phone protection against covered damage or theft when you pay your bill with your card.
Points can be redeemed for 1 cent per point towards travel or statement credits.
Hot Tip: Wells Fargo was founded to meet the banking needs of pioneers during the California Gold Rush, and holds the first-ever banking charter issued by the U.S. government.
Credit cards and the banks that issue them are a dynamic industry that continues to grow rapidly, as the world and our purchases become more globally connected.
Be sure to always take your time to research credit card offers and the companies behind them. Whether it is about your credit score, rewards program, or even the companies that issue the cards, the more you know — the better!
For head to head comparisons of some of the most popular credit card companies, check out these posts”
The information regarding the Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card, Bank of America® Premium Rewards® Card, Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Credit Card, Uber Visa Card, AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®, Citi Prestige® Card, Discover it® Cash Back Card, Discover it® Miles Card, PNC Cash Rewards® Visa® Credit Card, PNC Premier Traveler® Visa Signature® Credit Card, Cathay Pacific Visa, Amazon Prime Store Card, Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card, U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card, U.S. Bank Cash 365™ American Express Card, Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and was not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.