Finding and using the right credit card makes it easy to get rewarded for your purchases. And it’ll give you the spending power you need to save some serious cash.
But as you age and your needs change, it’s crucial that you reconsider your credit card. In this article, I’ll review some of the best credit cards for retirees. Make sure that if you’re retired, you consider one of these so you can enjoy the benefits they have to offer.
Overview: Best Credit Cards for Seniors and Retirees
|Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express||Grocery Shoppers|
|Chase Freedom||General Cash Back|
|Costco Anywhere Visa Card||If You Drive a Lot|
|Netspend Visa Prepaid Card||If You Prefer a Prepaid Card|
1. Best Card for Grocery Shoppers: Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express
Everyone has to buy groceries. So if you want rewards for making purchases you make anyway, the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express is one of the best. You can earn a lot of cash back each time you head to the grocery store. So it’s an excellent card for those who love to eat in and do a lot of cooking themselves, too.
I've used other cards that promised high cash back at the store, but they didn't deliver. Often, it was due to things like rotating categories or low caps on rewards.
Well, this one does deliver. When you use the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express at U.S. supermarkets, you'll get 6% cash back up to a total of $6,000 each year; plus 6% cash back on U.S. streaming subscription services. This is an incredible value! Terms Apply.
It also offers 3% back at U.S. gas stations and on transit. Additionally, you get 1% cash back on your other purchases. When you get your cash back, you'll receive it in the form of reward dollars. These can then be redeemed as a credit on your statement.
I’ve found this to be a great way to reduce the amount you have to pay when paying your bill in full each month. Also, you don’t need to complete any particular process to get set up with getting your cash back - it’s automatic.
Also, there's a great signup bonus. The current welcome bonus is $300 back (as a statement credit) after you spend $3,000 in the first six months of having your card. One thing to consider with this card is the $95 annual fee (waived the first year), as you want to make sure you'll earn more back than you pay in fees.
2. Best Card for General Cash Back: Chase Freedom
The Chase Freedom is for retirees who want to maximize their cash back, and are willing to be strategic. If you keep track of the categories offering rewards, you can earn plenty of cash back. There isn’t an annual fee, but you need to be aware of what categories will get you the highest rewards each quarter.
You have to enroll to earn the higher amount of 5% back (up to $1,500) per quarter. Otherwise, you'll receive 1% back, which is still better than nothing, I guess.
The current signup bonus gives you $150 back if you spend $500 or more in the first three months of having the card. For a card with no annual fee and substantial cash back rewards, this is a great bonus.
I love that there are a few ways to redeem the money you earn, too. This means that you won’t have to worry about how to get your rewards. You can either:
- Deposit the cash into your bank account
- Use it as a statement credit, or
- Transfer them as points to your eligible Chase card
3. Best Card if You Drive a Lot: Costco Anywhere Visa Card
If you’re a Costco member and are on the road a lot, you need to consider the Costco Anywhere Visa Card. This credit card actually rewards you for spending money on gas.
With no annual fee as long as you keep up your paid Costco membership, you’ll enjoy many ways to earn cash back. You’ll also be able to use your card in other countries without paying a foreign transaction fee.
This card offers 4% cash back on your eligible gas purchases for the first $7,000 that you spend each year. Beyond that, you'll get 1% back on additional gas purchases.
Outside of the significant cash back on gas, you'll get:
- 3% cash back on eligible travel purchases and restaurants
- 2% cash back on purchases from Costco.com and Costco stores, and
- 1% back on all other purchases
The variable APR is in line with other cards, too. While this isn't a terrible thing, you'll want to make sure you pay your card off in full when you can.
4. Best Card if You Want a Prepaid Card Instead: Netspend Visa Prepaid Card
There’s no reason you can’t have a great prepaid card as a retiree and enjoy many of the same benefits of a credit card. The Netspend Visa Prepaid Card is one of the best prepaid cards for retirees. Especially if you want the most versatile prepaid card on the market.
I love that you have many options for loading funds, and the card offers high withdrawal limits. This way, you can get the cash you need without a problem.
But, there are high fees with this card. This is something you need to be aware of so that you don’t waste a lot of money on fees.
There isn’t a credit check to sign up for this card, which is helpful for those with less-than-stellar credit. And because you can enjoy cash back on purchases, it is an excellent option for a lot of retirees.
It’s easy to add money to your card by bank transfer, direct deposit, MoneyPak, and even through Western Union. Additionally, there are more than 100,000 reload centers located across the country.
Make sure if you opt for the Netspend Visa Prepaid Card you choose the best plan for you. Currently, there are three different plans to choose from, each with three levels. Go here to view their current pricing matrix.
The nice thing about this card is that you can make adjustments to your plan at any time. Do this through the Netspend website if you find that a different plan will give you better options.
As you can see, there are a lot of great credit cards for retirees to choose from. And deciding what is most important to you will help you make the right choice for your needs.
These seven cards offer a wide variety of different features and benefits to their users. But please let us know if you think we missed a card in the comments below!