Major spending sprees like buying appliances, car parts, or holiday gifts always seem to shock our credit card bills a few times a year. Many times, we’re not prepared for those expenses and the proof is in the rising debt levels.
So the next time you’re going to make a big purchase, make sure you’re using the right credit card. It could make all the difference in the world, or at least put some extra cash back in your pocket.
In this article, I’ll review the best credit cards for big purchases so you can determine which card to get before that next major shopping trip.
Table of Contents:
Best Credit Cards for Big Purchases: Overall
|Credit Card||Best For|
|Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card||Earnings Rewards|
|Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express||Cash-Back Bonus|
|Wells Fargo Platinum Visa Card||No-Interest Promo|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred Card||Earning a Travel Bonus|
|Capital One Secured Mastercard||Poor Credit|
|Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card||Large Business Purchase|
The Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card is a great card for big purchases if you want to earn some excellent rewards back. You’ll get 30,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months, which ends up being a $300 cash redemption value. If you’re using the card for major purchases, you should be able to tally up $3,000 in no time.
After the big initial bonus, you’ll get 3X points on:
- Eating out and ordering in
- Gas, rideshares, and transit
- Flights, hotels, homestays, and car rentals
- Popular streaming services
For all other purchases, you’ll get 1X points. There aren’t any limits to the points you can earn, and your points will not expire as long as your account remains open.
On top of all of that, you’ll get an introductory 0% APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers, and there’s no annual fee.
For travel, there are absolutely no blackout dates on air travel when you use the Go Far® Rewards system to book. What’s also nice is that you can use a combination of points and a payment card. So if your big purchase happens to be a trip, you’re in luck.
Speaking of trips, the card also features no currency conversion fees–so you won’t have to worry about spending in other countries.
You also won’t have to worry about your cell phone getting stolen or damaged while traveling, as you’ll get up to $600 in cell phone protection against theft and covered damages if you use the card to pay your monthly cell phone bill.
Finally, since this is an American Express card, you’ll receive return protection and extended warranties on your big purchase.
You’ll also get a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months, which will help ease the burden of a large purchase. Although, the card does come with a $95 annual fee, the card is designed to earn serious cash back.
Since we all need to buy food, we love this card for its grocery perks. You’ll earn 6% cash back at all U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases. After that, it becomes 1% back. You’ll also get 3% cash back at any U.S. gas station, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. Your cash back comes in the form of Reward Dollars and those can be redeemed as a statement credit.
What I love about this card for big purchases is the sign-up bonus, the 0% intro APR, and the fact that it’s an American Express card. So, like the Wells Fargo card mentioned above, you’ll get return protection and extended warranties on your purchases.
Apply here or read our full Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express® Review
We absolutely love the Wells Fargo Platinum Visa Card if you’re planning to make a massive purchase and need as much time as possible with a promotional rate to pay it off.
When you open a new card, you’ll get an introductory 0% APR for 18 months on purchases and balance transfers, which is the lowest possible promotional rate right now. That should give you plenty of time to pay off your big purchase in full (that’s a year and a half!).
The card also has no annual fee.
While this card doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles you might find on some of the others, it does have some other nice features. You’ll get access to My Money Map, which includes tools that will help you manage your spending and create a budget easily.
You won’t earn a huge sign-up bonus and you won’t earn rewards with regular purchases, but this card can help you either get your existing finances in order (by way of a balance transfer) or help you manage a big expense by letting you pay it off over time.
If you’re someone who loves to travel, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is one of the best cards you can get – period. It comes with an excellent sign on bonus and the rewards are nearly unmatched. Let’s first talk about the sign on bonus.
Currently, Chase will give you 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first three months after opening an account. If you’re using this card for a major purchase (or several, for that matter), this shouldn’t be too difficult. These 60,000 points equate to $750 toward travel when you redeem them through Chase Ultimate Rewards–where you get a 25% bonus in travel redemptions.
Beyond your initial sign-on bonus, you’ll also earn rewards at an accelerated rate. You’ll earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants. This includes things like airfare, hotels, and any type of restaurant (whether a fancy place or a casual burger joint). All other purchases will earn 1X points.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card comes with a $95 annual fee. They also have a referral program where you can refer friends to apply for the card. If and when they do, you’ll get 10,000 bonus points per friend, for up to 60,000 bonus points extra during the year.
Your best bet if your credit is anything less than good would be a secured credit card. Secured cards allow you to get a credit card by putting collateral (money) down. So, for example, if you deposited $500, a bank may give you a $500 credit line. This allows you to build your credit and it keeps the bank safe if you default (they’ll just keep your money).
All that being said, we highly recommend the Capital One Secured Mastercard for your big purchase. No, you won’t be making a $10,000 monster purchase like you might be with some of these other cards, but you’ll still be able to get somewhere. If you make the minimum deposit of $49, you’re eligible for a credit line of up to $200. If you make on-time payments for your first five months, you’re eligible for another increase.
The card has no annual fee and is a great way to knock out a major purchase now while also building up your credit.
If you own a small business and need to make a big purchase, such as new office equipment, our favorite card is the New! Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card from Chase. This is one of the best business cards available and rivals many traditional credit cards.
First of all, you’ll get a 0% introductory APR for 12 months upon account opening for both purchases and balance transfers. This gives you a full year to pay off any major purchases without paying a dime of interest.
If you spend $3,000 within the first three months of opening the account, you’ll get $500 bonus cash back, too. This will post as a credit to your account after about 6 to 8 weeks.
There is no annual fee on the account, and you’ll get a flat 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no limits on how much cash you can earn. For everyday business purchases, as well as larger expenses, this card is a great deal to earn you cash back on expenses you already have.
Have no fear, big spender! The cards listed above cover nearly every situation you may run into. Remember, though, making a big purchase is a major responsibility. If you take advantage of a 0% offer, have a plan to pay it all back, otherwise, you’ll end up in debt. Now the only question remains–what are you going to buy?