Published on April 9th, 2014 | by William Charles38
Best Gas Credit Cards For June, 2017
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In this post we’ll look at the best credit cards for gas purchases. The average American will spend over $2,000 per year on gasoline purchases. Those who have to travel regularly for work, or have a growing family know that this is one of their biggest expenses each year. That’s why we bring you this, it’ll tell you which cards give you the best bang for your buck on gas purchases. Do you know of a card that’s better? Contact us and we’ll add it to this page.
Keep an eye out to see if there is a cash discount or credit card surcharge. A lot of gas stations now charge you extra for using a credit card to pay for your gas. You should make sure you work out if it’s cheaper to use a rewards credit card or just pay cash.
- 1 Top Gas Cards
- 1.1 VantageWest Credit Union Connect Rewards Credit Card – 3x, No Annual Fee ($15 Joining Fee)
- 1.2 Blue Cash Cards From American Express: 2-3% Cash Back
- 1.3 Chase AARP 3% Cash Back
- 1.4 Golden 1 Platinum Rewards Visa 3% Cash Back
- 1.5 American Express EveryDay Preferred & Mercedes-Benz From American Express: 3x Membership Rewards Points
- 1.6 Citi Premier 3x ThankYou Points
- 1.7 PenFed’s Two Cards
- 1.8 Citi Costco Personal & Business Cards 4% Back
- 1.9 American Express Old Blue Cash Card: 5% Cash Back After $6,500 In Spend
- 1.10 Sam’s Club Personal & Business MasterCard’s: 5% Cash Back
- 1.11 Fort Knox Credit Union Visa Platinum Credit Card: 5% Cash Back
- 2 Honorable Mentions
- 3 Cards That Didn’t Make The Cut
- 4 How Do They Work Out What Is And Isn’t A Gas Purchase?
Top Gas Cards
We’ve ordered these cards from best to worst, but every individuals “best gas card” will vary based on their other spending habbits. You should always try to get a minimum of 3¢ per $1 spent at a gas station in value (whether it be a straight 5%+ cash back card, or a card that gives you points which you value at 5¢ per dollar spent). 5¢ per $1 is the gold standard when it comes to gas station purchases, so that’s what you should ideally be getting if you purchase a lot of gas.
VantageWest Credit Union Connect Rewards Credit Card – 3x, No Annual Fee ($15 Joining Fee)
No annual fee, but joining fee of $15 for some people will apply. The advantage is you can also choose another category to earn 5% in ($1,500 max per quarter).
Blue Cash Cards From American Express: 2-3% Cash Back
Blue Cash Every Day
- No annual fee
- Sign up bonus of $50 and one year of Amazon Prime
- 2% back on all gas purchases
Blue Cash Preferred
- $75 annual fee
- Sign up bonus of $100 and one year of Amazon Prime
- 3% back on all gas purchases
American express has two versions of it’s Blue Cash cards. The EveryDay version earns 2% on all gas purchases and the Preferred version earns 3% on all gas purchases. The preferred version comes with an annual fee of The main advantage to these cards is that they earn 3% and 6% respectively on the first $6,000 in grocery store purchases. You’ll be better off getting the preferred card if you spend an additional $7,500 on gas a year or $2,500 in groceries
Recommended for: People whose main expense is grocery stores but want a slight bonus on their gas expenses.
Not recommended for: People who spend a lot of money on gas purchases each year. For example, if you spend $4,000 on gas each year you’ll be loosing $80 a year when you compare it to a card that earns 5% cash back on gas (this is for the preferred card. On the Every Day card you’d be loosing $120).
Chase AARP 3% Cash Back
This card earns 3% cash back on all gas & restaurant purchases with no annual fee.
Golden 1 Platinum Rewards Visa 3% Cash Back
Card earns 3% cash back on all gas, grocery and restaurant charges. There is no earning limit, although your cash back is only paid out once yearly. No annual fee and earns 1% cash back on all purchases.
American Express EveryDay Preferred & Mercedes-Benz From American Express: 3x Membership Rewards Points
Mercedes-Benz From American Express
- Earns 3 American Express points on U.S Gas stations on purchases under $400
- Earns 5 American Express points on select Mercedez-Benz purchases
- Earns 2x points at U.S restaurants
- 1x points on all other purchases
- Annual fee of $95
- 10,000 point sign up bonus
Recommended for: Those who love Merdedes-Benz
Not Recommended for: Those who spend more than $400 at a gas station in one purchase (e.g those doing manufactured spend or those with large vehicles like truckers).
AmEx EveryDay Preferred
- Annual fee of $95
- Earns American Express Membership Rewards Points which can be transferred to airline and hotel partners
- Earns 4.5x points on grocery store purchases
This card actually gives you 2x membership rewards points on gasoline purchases, but if you make 30 purchases within a month you get a 50% bonus, turning this into a 3x earning card (our tips for meeting the minimum purchase requirement).
This card would be ranked higher, but the high annual fee will only make it attractive for those who spend a lot at groceries.
Recommended for: People who prefer hotel or airline points than straight cash back and also spend a decent amount at grocery stores
Not recommended for: People who want straight cash back or only value hotel points at 1.67¢ or less (if you value them less than this, you’d be better off with a straight cash back card).
Citi Premier 3x ThankYou Points
- Annual fee of $95 is waived first year
- Earns 3x Citi ThankYou points on travel, including gas
Usually a good sign up bonus of 50,000 on this card and you earn 3x Citi ThankYou points on travel purchases (this includes gas). You can transfer the points to Citi’s travel partners, or redeem them for travel directly (worth 1.25¢ per point each when redeeming for travel through Citi’s travel portal). If you have the Citi Prestige card, then the points are worth 1.33¢ per point when redeeming for travel and 1.6¢ for American Airlines redemption’s. Meaning you could get a maximum value of 4.8% per point.
Recommended for: People who prefer hotel or airline points than straight cash back and especially those with the Citi Prestige
Not recommended for: People who want straight cash back, and those who value Citi’s transfer partners at less than 1.67¢ (if you value them less than this, you’d be better off with a straight 5% cash back card)
PenFed’s Two Cards
Both of these cards require you to become a member of their credit union before you can apply. To do this you need to make a small one off donation to either to Voices for America’s Troops ($15) or the National Military Family Association ($20).
PenFed Platinum Cash Rewards Visa® Card: 3-5% Cash Back
- Annual fee of $25 is waived first year
- No sign up bonus
To receive the 5% cash back on gas this card offers you must have the Plus version of this card (otherwise you’ll only earn 3% cash back). This requires you to have one or more of the qualifying products from PenFed:
- Active checking account with direct deposit ($250 min.)
- Money Market Certificate or IRA Certificate
- Installment loan
- Equity Loan or Equity Line of Credit with a balance
- Thrifty Credit Service
- Personal Line of Credit
- Education Line of Credit
- Money Market Savings Accounts
Recommended for: Members of PenFed who already have a qualifying account open
Not recommended for: People that aren’t members of PenFed and have no use for joining other than this credit card. They’ll be better off with another 5% gas earning card.
PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature® Card: 4.25% Visa Gift Card Back
- No annual fee
- No sign up bonus
This card earns 5 points at gas stations, 3 points at super markets and 1 point for all other purchases. 1 point used to be worth 1¢, but they are now only worth 0.85¢ per point. This means this card actually gives you the following rates:
- Gas: 4.25x cash back
- Groceries: 2.55x cash back
- All other purchases: 0.85x cash back
To make matters slightly worse you have to redeem your points for visa gift cards (minimum of $50 or 5,900 points), rather than statement credit or cold hard cash. The redemption rates are even worse if you try to redeem for gift cards.
Recommended for: Those who purchase a lot through gas and grocery
Not recommended for: Those who want a rewards program that is easy to redeem for. Those who want 5%+ back on gas purchases. Those who have low grocery store spend, or a card that earns more than 2.55x back at grocery stores. Those who want to cash back quickly and regularly)
Citi Costco Personal & Business Cards 4% Back
- No annual fee
- 4% back on the first $7,000 spend on gas purchases
This card earns 4% cash back, including purchases at Costco gas stations up to a maximum of $7,000 per year ($280 in rewards). It also earns 3% back at restaurants and travel purchases. This card is only available to both personal & business cardholders.
The reason this card is rated so highly is that it earns 4% on gas purchases at Costco where gas is usually much cheaper than other providers. Most of the other cards will provided in this list only provide rewards at stand alone gas stations (which doesn’t include Costco).
Recommended for: People who regularly purchase their gas from costco.
Not recommended for: People spending over $7,000 per year in gas and people don’t don’t purchase gas from costco.
American Express Old Blue Cash Card: 5% Cash Back After $6,500 In Spend
The American Express old blue cash card earns 5% cash back on grocery stores, drugstores, and gas stations but only after you’ve spent $6,500. There is also a $50,000 spending cap on those 5% bonus categories. This is obviously a great card for big spenders.
Sam’s Club Personal & Business MasterCard’s: 5% Cash Back
- No annual fee (requires Sam’s Club membership)
- 3% cash back on all dining and travel expenses
- No sign up bonus
This card earns at 5% on all gas purchases on the first $6,000 spent per year, there is a business and personal version of this card. There are some restrictions though, this 5% cash back excludes purchases on fuel stations at wholesale clubs (other than Sam’s Club).
Recommended for: People who already have a Sam’s club membership and purchase less than $6,000 on gas per year
Not recommended for: People who spend more than $6,000 per year on gas.
Fort Knox Credit Union Visa Platinum Credit Card: 5% Cash Back
- No annual fee
- No sign up bonus
This card gives you a straight 5% back on all gas purchases. Unlike other credit unions, you don’t need to be a member to apply for this one. There is also no limit on how much you can earn with this card. The downside is that on all other purchases you only earn 1%.
Recommended for: Those who spend a lot on gas and have other credit cards they can use for their other purchases that earn more than 1%.
Not recommended for: Those who only have or want one credit card and spend a lot of money outside of gas stations. Also not recommended for those who don’t spend a lot per year on gas, as the hard credit pull could be better used on a card with a better sign up bonus.
Chase Freedom 5-5.5% Two Quarters Per Year
- No annual fee
- $100 sign up bonus (goes as high as $200)
This card didn’t make it to the main list because the categories you earn 5% cash back on change every quarter. In 2013 you were able to earn 5% cash back for half the year (in Q1 and Q3). This will be repeated in 2014, with Q1 already being gas and Q3 also qualifying. Another reason it didn’t make the cut is that you only get 5% on the first $1,500 purchases each month (maximum of $75 back), where as a lot of people will use more gas than this per month if they travel long distances for work.
If you hold a Chase checking account you’ll earn an extra 10% annually from the previous years purchases. This means you can earn up to 5.5% cash back on gas purchases for half the year (up to $1,500 in purchases per quarter). Make sure you check to see if there are any sign up bonuses for the checking account before signing up.
Discover IT 5% One Quarter Per Year
- No annual fee
- Sign up bonus of $150 (highest sign up bonus this card has ever had), after you spend $750 within three months
This card is extremely similar to the Chase Freedom card, it also has rotating 5% categories that change every quarter and a limit of $1,500 for purchases earning 5% per quarter (maximum of $75 in cash back). Unlike the Freedom card they seem to only offer this for one quarter per year (2013 it was Q3 and 2014 Q3 also has a symbol of a gas pump), so it’s a little bit less desirable.
Wells Fargo Cash Back Card – 5% For The First Six Months
This card also offers 5% on gas purchases, unfortunately it’s limited to the first six months only. It also earns at this rate for grocery & gas store purchases. It also does not come with a sign up bonus.
TD Easy Rewards Visa Credit Card – 5% For First Six Months
This card is similar to the Wells Fargo card. It earns 5% on gas purchases as well as dining, groceries phone and utility bill payments but it’s limited to the first six months after account opening.
Citizen’s Bank CashBack Platinum MasterCard – 5% For First 90 Days
This is similar to the Wells Fargo & TD cards listed above, although it only offers 5% cash back for the first 90 days instead of the first six months.
Cards That Didn’t Make The Cut
None of the gas station specific cards made the cut. This is because they give you a flat fee rate off per gallon, which was usually less than the 5% some of the other cards offered. They also only pay out that discount at their own branded stores, which makes it impossible for you to price shop.
- Ink Bold/Ink Plus Business Cards: Earn 2 Chase UR points per dollar spent at gas stations. Annual fees of $95 are waived for the first year only, worth it if you can get 2.5¢ or more in value per point.
- BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card: Earn 3% cash back on the first $1,500 in gas spend each quarter (or grocery store spend which earns 2%). Most people will easily reach this limit, which is why it wasn’t included.
- La Quinta Returns: 2 La Quinta Returns points per $1 spent at gas locations.
- BP Visa® With Pump Reward: This card gives you 15-25¢ off per gallon. Unfortunately the 25¢ rate is only for the first 60 days on purchases above $100. After that it drops to 15¢ a gallon which is less than 5% per gallon (assuming gas is above $3 per gallon). To make matters worse it only includes purchases made at BP.
- Chevron & Texaco Credit Card: This card gives you 10¢-30¢ off per gallon. You get 30¢ for the first two months of card membership and then 10¢ if you make $300 in qualifying purchases per month or 20¢ off if you make $1,000 in qualifying purchases. Requires a $25 fee to enroll in the Chevaron premium program.
How Do They Work Out What Is And Isn’t A Gas Purchase?
Every merchant (in this case, a gas station) is provided with something known as a Merchant Category Code (MCC), this is used by the credit card companies to determine where your purchase is made. If you make a purchase at a gas station, it should be coded correctly. Visa allows you to look up MCC data using the name of a business or address, whilst Mastercard, Discover & American Express don’t make this data public.
Disagree with any of our rankings? Let us know in the comments why.
You can find information on other categories in the links below:
- Department stores
- Drug stores
- Everyday purchases
- Grocery store
- Office supply stores
- Cards that earn 5% or more cash back