Maximizing Your First and Second Largest Spend Categories
Earning rewards with the Venmo card is a bit unique in that you’ll earn the most cash-back for your purchases based on what you actually spend the most on each month, provided that it falls within one of the 8 preselected spend categories. Those categories are as follows:
- Bills and Utilities — including your phone and internet bill, streaming services, subscriptions, electricity, gas, and more
- Dining and Nightlife — including takeout, bars, and delivery services
- Entertainment — including tickets to movies, concerts, amusement parks, theatres, and more
- Gas — including any service station that sells gas
- Grocery — including wholesale stores like Target and Walmart
- Health and Beauty — including gym memberships, fitness clubs, drugstores, cosmetic stores, and more
- Transportation — including rideshare services, rental cars, buses, trains, parking meters, and garages
- Travel — including flights, hotels, and vacation rentals
So, if at the end of the month you’ve spent the largest amount of money on grocery purchases, followed by monthly bills and utilities, you’ll earn 3% cash-back and 2% cash-back on those purchases, respectively.
But perhaps the best feature about the Venmo card is that what you earn the most cash-back on can change from month to month. So if you have a big vacation planned for the following month and your 2 largest categories become travel and dining, then those will be your 3% and 2% categories for the following month.
So no matter what, you’re always earning the most cash-back where you spend the most money.
All Other Purchases
Of course, all other purchases outside your top 3% and 2% back categories will still earn 1% cash-back. That obviously is not great compared to other cash-cards that offer 1.5% to 2% cash-back on all non-bonused purchases, but it is certainly better than nothing at all.
Add To Your Venmo Balance
The most obvious and straightforward way to redeem the cash-back from your Venmo card is to have that cash-back deposited into your Venmo account. From there you can use it to pay for items, pay your friends, or withdraw into your bank account.
Redeem Towards Your Credit Card Balance
You can also easily redeem your cash-back rewards towards your Venmo card statement balance when it comes due to reduce your overall bill each month. This is a great option for those looking to stay on top of their budget by reducing their cash outlay each month.
If you’re someone who invests in crypto or is interested in doing so, Venmo allows you to redeem your cash-back to purchase crypto on the platform starting at as little as $1. Currently, Venmo allows you to purchase 4 assets on its platform: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash.
However, you should be mindful that Venmo only allows you to buy or sell crypto on the platform, meaning that any crypto that you purchase cannot be moved off the Venmo platform without first being sold into cash.
Further, users pay a 2.3% transaction fee for crypto purchases under $100, with a minimum fee of $0.50. So this transaction fee would significantly cut into your cash-back rewards if you’re making smaller purchases.
Bottom Line: When it comes to your Venmo cash-back, you’ll likely be best off just deposing the cash into your Venmo account or using it to pay down your cards balance. If you’re interested in investing in crypto, you’d be much better off using another card given the large transaction fees you’ll pay and the fact that your crypto cannot be moved off the platform.