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The best credit cards for online shopping

Aug. 19, 2022
15 min read
Close-Up Of Small Shopping Boxes With Credit Card On Laptop
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If you find yourself scouring through the internet’s virtual sales bins more than you’d care to admit, you’re in good company.

Whether you’re a seasoned veteran in the online shopping world or just looking for a way to pass the time (or some retail therapy — we don’t judge), you’ll want to do yourself a favor and use a credit card that earns you valuable points, miles or cash back.

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Let’s dive in to some of the best credit cards for your online purchases.

The best cards for online shopping

Chase Freedom Unlimited

(Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)
(Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)

Annual fee: $0

Welcome offer: Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) – worth up to $300 cash back.

Standout shopping benefits: The Chase Freedom Unlimited earns 1.5% cash back on purchases, no ifs, ands or buts. It also boasts an extended warranty that extends the time period of a U.S. manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, or an eligible warranty of three years or less. Better yet, rewards don’t expire as long as your account is open, making the Freedom Unlimited one of the best cash back credit cards available today.

That 1.5% cash back can become more valuable when paired with a premium Ultimate Rewards card, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve. With those cards, you can make the points earned by the Freedom Unlimited fully transferable Ultimate Rewards points worth up to 2 cents each.

Further reading:

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Apply now: Chase Freedom Unlimited


American Express® Gold Card

(Photo by Isabelle Raphael / The Points Guy)
(Photo by Isabelle Raphael / The Points Guy)

Annual fee: $250 (see rates and fees).

Welcome offer: 60,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $4,000 in purchases in the first six months of account opening — worth $1,200, according to our valuations.

Standout shopping benefits: The Amex Gold Card is typically one of the best cards for the food-obsessed among us, thanks to the 4 bonus points per dollar you’ll earn at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases each calendar year; then 1 point per dollar). However, it also has a trick up its sleeve when it comes to online shopping: purchase protection.*

This is the card you’ll want to use for any big orders (think: furniture) or anything marked final sale. That’s because you’re covered by up to $10,000 in coverage for purchases made with your card when they're accidentally damaged, stolen or lost for up to 90 days.

Many people report that American Express has the least painful claim process, too, so this can really come in handy. It doesn’t exclude items that are lost or misplaced.

You’ll also get extended warranty protection* (one additional year for items with original manufacturer’s warranty of five years or less).

Further reading:

*Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by Amex Assurance Company.


Apply now: American Express Gold Card


Blue Cash Everyday Card® from American Express

(Photo by The Points Guy)

Annual fee: $0.

Welcome offer: Earn a $200 statement credit after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card within the first six months of card membership

Standout shopping benefits: With the Blue Cash Everyday Card you can earn 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets, gas stations and online shopping up to $6,000 annually. Cardholders will earn 1% cash back on all other purchases. The card also comes with a $15 monthly credit to Home Chef and a $7 monthly credit to Disney Bundle's monthly subscription. Enrollment required for select benefits.

Further reading:


Apply now: Blue Cash Everyday Card


The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express

(Photo by The Points Guy)

Annual fee: $95

Welcome offer: 15,000 American Express Membership Rewards points after you spend $1,000 in the first three months of account opening.

Standout shopping benefits: If you make 30 or more purchases in a billing cycle, you’ll earn an additional 50% Membership Rewards points on your purchases. Keep in mind, though, that if you use it 29 times or less, you’ll get the standard 1 Membership Rewards point on all purchases, instead of the 1.5 points.

The information for The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Further reading:

Chase Freedom flex

Annual fee: $0.

Welcome offer: Earn $200 after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months of account opening.

Standout shopping benefits: The Chase Freedom Flex’s main draw is its rotating bonus categories. Every quarter, Chase releases a list of categories that the card will earn 5% cash back on — and typically, at least once per year, you'll see department stores or even Amazon purchases on the list. You’ll have to register on Chase’s website or app to participate, but it’s a seamless process and only takes a few minutes. You’ll earn 5% cash back in rotating quarterly categories on the first $1,500 in purchases each quarter you activate.

Better yet, if you have a Chase Ultimate Rewards card — such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card — you’ll be able to pool your rewards and redeem them for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, or transfer to one of Chase’s airline or hotel partners for even more value.

Further reading:


Apply now: Chase Freedom Flex


Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature

(Photo by The Points Guy)

Annual fee: $0.

Welcome offer: It varies, but we currently see an offer for a $200 Amazon gift card valid for purchases at Amazon that is available as soon as you are approved.

Standout shopping benefits: You’ll get 5% cash back on Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market, plus 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations and drug stores. It also comes with purchase protection up to $500 per claim and $50,000 per account, and extended warranty protection that provides an additional year of coverage on eligible purchases with a manufacturer’s warranty of three years or less.

You’ll have to be a Prime member to be eligible to get the card — but if you are, there’s little reason not to apply if you are a frequent Amazon shopper.

Further reading:

The information for the Amazon Prime Rewards’ cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card

(Photo by George Frey/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Annual fee: $0.

Welcome offer: $200 bonus after spending $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 120 days of account opening.

Standout shopping benefits: You earn 5% cash back on your first $2,000 in combined eligible purchases each quarter on two categories you choose with the U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa. The categories include everything from TV, internet and streaming services to gyms and fitness centers — and of course, department stores and select clothing stores. Cardholders can also earn 5% cash back on prepaid air, hotel and car reservations booked through the Rewards Center, and 2% cash back at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants.

This card is a great contender for online shoppers who are looking to earn some cash back on their purchases.

Further reading:


Apply now: U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card


Capital One Spark Miles for Business

Annual fee: $95, waived the first year.

Welcome offer: You can earn 50,000 miles after you spend $4,500 in the first three months of account opening — worth $925, according to TPG valuations.

Standout shopping benefits: The Capital One Spark Miles for Business card is one of the few small-business credit cards on the market that still offers price protection. Price protection differs from purchase protection in that it’s essentially an insurance policy against a price drop on an item you just bought.

For example, let’s say you buy a pair of shoes at Bloomingdales (using your airline’s shopping portal or Rakuten, of course). A few days later, you notice the shoes are discounted even more at Nordstrom. If you used your Spark Miles for Business card, you’ll be eligible to get reimbursement for the difference between what you paid and the better price you found.

Further reading:


Apply now: Capital One Spark Miles


The Platinum Card® from American Express

(Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)
(Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)

Annual fee: $695 (see rates and fees).

Welcome offer: Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards Points after you spend $6,000 on purchases within the first six months of card membership — worth $1,600 according to TPG valuations.

Standout shopping benefits: Aside from lounge access, Uber credits, airline fee credit and more perks that come with the Amex Platinum, the card also boasts a very unique benefit: up to $100 in annual statement credits to Saks Fifth Avenue. Enrollment is required for select benefits.

The credit is available in the form of two $50 statement credits per year. Your first $50 statement credit is available from July 1 to Dec. 31 and your second $50 statement credit is available from Jan. 1 to June 30. You need to enroll your Amex Platinum Card for this benefit to take effect, which you can do through your Amex account online.

You’ll only earn 1 point on online shopping purchases, but hey — a shopping discount is always a win in our book.

Further reading:


Apply now: Amex Platinum Card


Maximize your online shopping

Earning cash back or bonus points for online shopping is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to maximizing your online purchases. Thanks to online shopping portals like Rakuten, you can earn even more rewards on these purchases.

Shopping portal aggregators like Cashback Monitor function as a search tool to find which loyalty program or cash back portal will earn you the most points when shopping online. Rakuten is an example of an online shopping portal that offers cash back or Membership Rewards when shopping online at certain retailers. Alternatively, you could also earn Chase Ultimate Rewards by shopping through Chase shopping portal.

Airline and hotel shopping portals are also an option if you prefer not to earn transferable points. Here are a few options:

Related: The beginner's guide to online shopping portals

For rates and fees of the Amex Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Platinum Card, please click here.

Additional reporting by Ashley Onadele.

Featured image by Getty Images/EyeEm
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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How we chose these cards

Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
See all best card offers

TPG featured card

Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023