By Will Charles
Amazon.com is one of the most well known and popular online retailers, because of this in 2013 they did $74.45 billion in revenue. If you’re anything like me you do a lot of your shopping on amazon, as such it’s important to have a credit card that earns at a high rate for this online juggernaut.
Amazon.com Rewards Visa Card From Chase: 3% Cash Back
A lot of people wrongly assume that the amazon.com card offered by Chase is the best on the market when it comes to purchases on Amazon.com. Both companies rely on this knowledge and instead of offering an amazing cash back rate on Amazon purchases they instead only offer 3%. As you’ll see in this post, there are MUCH better options out there than this card.
American Express Blue Cash: 3% Cash back
This card earns 3% cash back on grocery stores, thankfully almost all grocery stores stock Amazon gift cards. Similar to the card offered by Chase this card also offers 2% back on gas purchases, the key difference is that there is a sign up bonus of $100 when you spend $1,000 within the first three months.
American Express Everyday Preferred : 4.5 American Express MR Points
This card earns 3 American Express membership rewards points per dollar spent at grocery stores, you also get a 50% bonus if you do a minimum of 30 transactions per month – bringing the total to 4.5 MR points per dollar spent. Grocery stores stock Amazon gift cards.
The downside to this is the annual fee of $95, the upside is that this card comes with a 15,000 point sign up bonus when spend $1,000 within the first three months.
Chase Freedom/Discover it: 5% In Q4
Both of these cards offering 5% rotating categories. In the fourth quarter of last year both of them offered this on amazon purchases – just in time for those Christmas purchases. Chase is set to do the same this year and it looks like Discover will follow suit although they haven’t released their full schedule yet.
Neither card comes with an annual fee. The Freedom currently has a sign up bonus of $100 after $500 in spend (this regularly goes up to $200) and the Discover it has a bonus of $150 after $750 in spend. Both of these cards have a limit of $1,500 that can be spent per quarter.
Chase Ink Plus/Bold/Cash 5x Chase UR Points
These are business cards offered by Chase, they all earn 5x Chase UR points on office supply store purchases (which can be redeemed for 1 cent each in statement credit or transferred to airline or hotel partners). Most office supply stores carry amazon gift cards which means you can get 5% back.
SallieMae Rewards Mastercard From Barclaycard: 5% Cash Back
This card is often overlooked, it earns 5% on gas and grocery store purchases (the first $250 you spend each month in both categories) and earns 5% on eligible bookstore purchases. Amazon’s main business used to be selling books (and still is) as such their merchant category code is still a bookstore. This means this card will earn 5% cash back on Amazon.com purchases, there is a limit of $750 per month.
Not all amazon.com purchases will code as a bookstore though, a lot of Amazon market place purchases will not code as a bookstore and as such you won’t earn 5% cash back. There is also a sign up bonus of $25 after your first purchase.
American Express Blue Cash Preferred: 6% Cash Back
This card earns 6% cash back at grocery stores on the first $6,000 every year. I know this is an article is on Amazon purchases, but the work around is easy. Almost all grocery stores stock Amazon gift cards, you simply choose the amount you want and then purchase it. It takes a little bit more work, but for those who frequently shop at Amazon this is well worth it.
The downside is that this card comes with an annual fee of $75. The upside is that there is a sign up bonus of $150 if you spend $1,500 within the first three months.
Get Additional Money Back
You can earn additional savings by pairing your favorite credit card with a cash back portal. These deals regularly change and are generally only for specific (and high margin) categories. The following portals regularly offer cash back deals at amazon. Be sure to read the fine print!
- befrugal – up to 6% cash back currently
- eBates – up to 3% cash back currently
- Fatwallet – up to 3% cash back currently
- Mr Rebates – no cash back currently
Will is the editor at doctorofcredit.com. He regular blogs about personal finance and consumer credit issues. Recently he posted a list of the best cash credit card sign up bonuses. Make sure you follow him on twitter to keep abreast of the latest news & deals.
(Photo courtesy of Phillip Stewart)