Posted by William Charles on June 18, 2017
Credit Cards

Published on June 18th, 2017 | by William Charles


PNC Cash Rewards Visa Review – $100 Sign Up Bonus, 4% On Gas & 3% On Restaurants [ AL, DC, DE. FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MD, MI, MO, NC, NJ, OH, PA, SC, VA, WI, WV]

The PNC Cash Rewards Visa Credit Card is now accepting applications. Here are some basic details:

  • No annual fee
  • Sign up bonus of $100 after $1,000 in purchases
  • Card earns at the following rates ($8,000 annual cap on the 2%/3%/4% categories):
    • 4% cash back on gas purchases
    • 3% cash back on dining purchases
    • 2% cash back on grocery purchases
    • 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • 0% Introductory APR for the first 12 billing cycles
  • You can redeem for cash back when you have $25 or more in your account
  • Applications restricted to the following states:  AL, DC, DE. FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MD, MI, MO, NC, NJ, OH, PA, SC, VA, WI, WV

Not a terribly exciting card given that you can earn up to 5% cash back on gas purchases, up to 3x points on restaurants, up to 6% on grocery store purchases and up to 3% back on all purchases with other credit cards. Sign up bonus makes it a bit more attractive but still not tempting. PNC does have a history of terrible credit cards. But they have been improving recently (and on business cards) this is another step in the right direction.

Hat tip to reader Qi

48 Responses to PNC Cash Rewards Visa Review – $100 Sign Up Bonus, 4% On Gas & 3% On Restaurants [ AL, DC, DE. FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MD, MI, MO, NC, NJ, OH, PA, SC, VA, WI, WV]

  1. irshad says:

    I read your title and wondered how PNC came up with such a good credit card (PNC has some of very lousy credit cards). But then after reading the whole article I realized its 4% only for gas.
    Not worth it.

    • Jake says:

      The only card that earns higher than 4% is the Fort Knox credit card @ 5% and they are really hard to get approval for. I don’t see what’s wrong with this

      • Josh m says:

        Sam’s Club earns 5% on gas

      • Steve F says:

        USAA also has a 5% cash back at gas stations card.

        • Jake says:

          USAA is for military only

          • Steve F says:

            Correct, however it should be noted this doesn’t just include current active duty military; it also includes family members (spouses and children), and former military.

            From their website –

            Who We Serve
            Active Military
            Individuals who are currently serving in the U.S. Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines or Navy.

            Former Military
            Those who have retired or separated from the U.S. military with a discharge type of Honorable.

            Widows, widowers and un-remarried former spouses of USAA members who joined USAA prior to or during the marriage and individuals whose parents joined USAA.

            Cadets and Midshipmen
            Cadets and midshipmen at U.S. service academies, in advanced ROTC or on ROTC scholarship, plus officer candidates within 24 months of commissioning.

      • Tom says:

        BOA Cash Rewards with Platinum Honors, in addition to the other 5 or so cards that have already been mentioned.

        LOL @ your statement…

        • Jake says:

          They all have draw backs attached to them.

        • Jake says:

          Fort Knox is hard to get approved for

          Penfed is discontinued

          Sams club only lets you redeem once per year

          BofA requires $100,000 in assets with them

          Am I missing something?

          • GPO says:

            Actually, for 4.5% BofA would require 50K… if you have 100K, the cashback will be 5.25%.

            I don’t see much difference between this card and Costco Anywhere except the change Costco x Groceries.

      • Tom says:

        Also, AMEX EDP 3% * 2cpp with Business Platinum for myself until my card member anniversary.

      • irshad says:

        For me its not about what the cc earns for spending. what sign up bonus will they give for getting a new card.
        For other cards there is a lot of value up front even though they dont return as much for spending

      • adam d says:

        Penefed 5% back at pump, any gas station that isnt connected to a 7-11,sams club etc; one time fee of $20 to some military fund ,open to citizens, have had the card for years, straight cash back on statement auto applied,no need to trade in points.

  2. barrytuneup says:

    penfed has a 5% gas card, All you need a very minor relationship with them.

  3. Milo says:

    I went to PNC bank to open the checking account and I was told about this card.

    I was about to send this information to you and it looks like the reader in reddit beat me.

    This card has no annual fee and no sign up bonus(atleast that is what I saw in the pamphlet)

    There is one information missing above is there $8000 limit for the bonus spend.

    I have sent a separate email with the picture of the pamphlet

  4. The Value Traveler says:

    No PNC here…2% at grocery…not the greatest MS card ..

  5. Nick says:

    National City (which PNC acquired) had almost the exact same rewards structure, except dining out only earned 2% and “all other” spending was UP TO 1%, depending on how much you spent annually (it started at 0.25%). My parents still have that card, which PNC has not elected to convert to another product (nor can you). I still have the original CashBuilder, which started at 0.5% cash back.

  6. john mccann says:

    I’ve had a PNC card since “98. Has the exact same percentages. What’s good about the card is you accumulate the bonus. It’s given to you as a credit on your Jan. statement. You don’t get the temptation to spend the bonus right away. The percentages aren’t bad at all. Their all the time,not just for 3 months at a time like some cards.

  7. John says:

    Is this avail to everyone or certain states?

    • DGS says:

      I’m pretty sure that you must reside in the PNC footprint. PNC primarily operates in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maryland and Florida. I have a classic PNC Platinum Visa that I’ve had for about 8 years. They refuse to PC it a rewards card.

  8. Austin says:

    I also got the brochure several days ago in a PNC branch. It says that this card has 30,000 bonus miles after $3000 spend.

  9. culinarykid92 says:

    Is this a no FTF card?

  10. IOException says:

    Methinks they’re copying Citibank.

    Costco consumers are fairly wealthy, and I’m sure that Citi’s new card is quite profitable for them.

  11. Ed says:

    New? Just a minor modification from the card they have been offering for years that gives 4% back on gas, 3% on movie tickets, 2% on groceries and dining, and 1% back on everything else.

    • EastsideBrad says:

      Yes! You are spot on Ed! It is very similar as the old NatCity 1-2-3-4 card, the difference, as Nick pointed out, is the old card is only “up to” 1%.

      The NatCity 1-2-3-4 is the best card no one has (apparently) heard of. 4% on gas is great when you cannot hit a branded station (Shell, BP, Exxon, etc) with discounted gift cards. And 2% on restaurants (now 3%) is good if you don’t play the CSR Ultimate Rewards game. Where I do esp. well on this card is the PNC Purchase PayBack which gets me an extra 5% (minimum) on a variety of restaurants and hotels. And as someone pointed I get a check automatically when I hit $100. (2 or 3x a year)

      Thanks for the update Will!

  12. Jason says:

    My review:

    4% cash back on gas purchases.

    BOFA cash reward CC offers 3% cash back on gas. And if you have a checking account there, 10% more that is $3.3% redeemed into BOFA checking. However, BOFA cash reward checking account has public sign-up bonus of $150. You need to spend $150/1%=$15000 in gas with PNC CC to offset the fact that PNC not having the sign-up bonus as BOFA card. Also, keep in mind that you can from time to time, purchase discount gas giftcard (prepaid card) at ebay from SVM. Best discount is 8% with free shipping. You can pay 8% discount gift card with your 2% CC card such as Citi Double Cash, in that way, your saving will be 8%+92%*2%=9.84%. It’s more than double comparing to this PNC CC. I personally go to BP and speedway near my home place with cheapest gas price at $2.50/gallon. And I use my gas giftcard there all the time. I don’t even use BOFA card on gas although I do have one , so why would you bother with PNC?

    3% cash back on dining purchases

    I recall someone from older posts did mention he might just pay 10% for tips so any CC offers great cash back on dining does not sound anything exciting to him. I agree. Comparing with Citi Double Cash, for a $100 bill including tax/tips, you are only gaining $1 more with PNC CC. I think I may just cut that $1 back from tips if you ask me. Well, I pretty much enjoy using Chase 5% on dinning if it has it for that quarter. And just how often each of us will be dinning in a month?

    2% cash back on grocery purchases
    1% cash back on all other purchases

    Not worth mentioning these 2.

    My DP with PNC CC in the past (within about 6 months ago)

    I was pre-qualified for one of their cards, not the one above of course. Filled out application and declined and explained in letter a few days

    1. In NY, they pull my Trans Union
    2. Declined due to too many recent inquiries. (12 in 12 months)
    3. Declined due to high utilization

    In my opinion, they are strict on CC application. And given the fact that there’s no sign up bonus and if you are only for the part that offers 4% on gas, I’ll recommend you to apply for BOFA cash reward card instead, or at least first before this PNC CC.

  13. Miz says:

    Only applicants from following states can apply: AL, DC, DE. FL, GA, IL, IN, KY, MD, MI, MO, NC, NJ, OH, PA, SC, VA, WI, WV

    Other states are not available for selection in application form.

  14. Frito Pendejo says:

    Two years ago I was denied a $100 bonus on a PNC card like this because I had already received a $100 bonus on a different PNC card recently despite no language disqualifying this. I escalated and was repeatedly denied. A CFPB complaint got me the $100 but soured me to PNC

  15. Brian says:

    I guess I don’t understand why this isn’t an exciting card because I think it’s great and applied day 1 and added it to my wallet. For context, I also have the Discover It, Chase Freedom, Citi Double Cash, Amazon Prime Rewards.

    Yes, the Discover & Chase both earn 5% back on gas but that’s only 1 quarter out of the year. I’ll use PNC’s Cash Rewards to get 4% back the other 3 quarters because there’s no other card that you can earn as much with unless you meet certain stipulations or go to the same gas company every fill up. Same exact concept goes for the 3% Restaurants/Fast Food and 2% Grocery Stores. You do earn more 1 quarter with Discover & Chase but what about the rest of the year? That’s exactly when this card can come in handy.

    I maximize my cash back rewards with each and every purchase and this card is a great addition. Not my primary card for sure but a great complement to the other cards I utilize. The only real downside I see with this card is the cap for some people. For me, I won’t be spending $8,000 between the gas & restaurant purchases so it really won’t affect me.

    I also don’t understand why it’s been said that PNC has terrible cards. The Core has a rate that starts at 10.99% with intro 15 months 0% APR on purchases & balance transfers. The other cards I’ve seen have rates about 1% higher and if not more.

    And I’ve also had the PNC CashBuilder for a few years now and that earns 1.5% cash back on everything, exact same as Chase Freedom Unlimited & Capital One Quicksilver. So if you’re saying the PNC card is terrible then so are those cards. The only reason I stopped using the CashBuilder is because the Citi Double Cash came out and that’s been my go to for years now

    Overall, I think this new PNC Cash Rewards is great and I’m glad to have it. PNC isn’t advertised at all but they do have solid products if you’re in their footprint.

  16. Darv says:

    Denied for this card. Pulled EX, seven inquiries past six months. The only reason cited for denial was too many inquiries. I might recon this one, as bonus categories for gas and restaurants might make it a long-term keeper.

    I applied in a PNC branch and told my banker that I likely would need her help getting the card approved. She said she would call in and see what she could do. She never got back to me, so don’t know if she actually called.

    The main reason I was there was to open a PNC checking account with a bonus. I don’t live in the PNC footprint. The checking account is open.

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