These are the 4 best credit cards for every type of gamer
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With a rise in digital content and mobile and subscription services, gaming has surged in popularity in recent years. And the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated that growth even further.
According to the market research firm NPD Group, video gaming in the U.S. reached a record $10.86 billion in the first quarter of 2020. That goes to show it’s not just streaming services, like Netflix, that are taking the spotlight for at-home entertainment during the pandemic.
If gaming is your thing, how should you maximize your credit card spending for hardware, accessories, content and everything in between? Since the gaming category is so broad, the best way to earn the most rewards for your spending is to strategize where exactly you buy these items.
Here are our top cards for gamers.
- Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card — Best card for hardware and accessories
- PlayStation® Visa® Credit Card — Best card for PlayStation gamers
- Citi® Double Cash Card — Best card for simple cash back
- Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card — Best for digital purchases
Comparing the best cards for gamers
|Card||Best for||Sign-up bonus||Earning rates|
|Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card||Gaming hardware and accessories on Amazon||$70 Amazon gift card upon approval||5% back at Amazon and Whole Foods Market; 2% back on restaurants, gas stations and drug stores|
|PlayStation Visa Credit Card||PlayStation gamers||5,000 Sony Rewards points after opening and using the card within 60 days of account open||5 points per $1 on PlayStation Store purchases and Sony products from authorized retailers, 3 points per $1 on cellphone bills, and 1 point per $1 on everything else|
|Citi Double Cash Card||Simple cash back||None||2% cash back (1% back when you buy and another 1% back as you pay)|
|Bank of America Cash Rewards credit card||Digital purchases||$200 cash rewards bonus after making at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening||3% cash back in the category of your choice each month (gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home improvement/furnishings); 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club purchases each quarter, then 1%), and 1% on everything else|
The information for the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature, PlayStation Visa card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
In-depth look at the best cards for gamers
If games are your thing, these cards are a good bet for earning rewards on spending that you’d likely be doing anyway.
Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card: Best for hardware and accessories
Sign-up bonus: $70 Amazon gift card upon approval
Annual fee: $0 (must be Amazon Prime member, $119 per year)
Why we like this card: Amazon sells just about everything — and that includes all you need for the perfect gaming set-up. From gaming consoles to keyboards, accessories and more, you’ll more than likely be able to find it on Amazon. With the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa, you’ll get 5% back on all Amazon purchases. And when you get hungry from all that gaming, you’ll also get 5% back on all Whole Foods purchases.
Pro-tip: Another great card for Amazon is the Chase Freedom card (No longer open to new applicants) which has a quarterly rotating bonus (up to $1,500). For Q3 of 2020, you’ll get 5x back on Amazon and Whole Foods purchases from July 1 through Sept. 30, 2020.
Related reading: Best cards for Amazon purchases
PlayStation Visa Credit Card: Best for PlayStation gamers
Sign-up bonus: Earn 5,000 Sony Rewards points after opening and using the card within 60 days of account open
Annual fee: $0
Why we like this card: If you’re a die-hard fan of PlayStation consoles, games and software, it’s worth taking a look at this card. You’ll earn 5 points per $1 on PlayStation Store purchases and Sony products from authorized retailers. You’ll also get 3 points per $1 on cellphone bills, and 1 point per $1 on everything else.
Each point is worth about a cent each, so you’re looking at about a 5x return for PlayStation and Sony products. However, you can only redeem by spending at the PlayStation Store so definitely take that into consideration before applying.
Citi Double Cash Card: Best for simple cash back
Sign-up bonus: $0
Annual fee: $0
Why we like this card: With the Double Cash card, Citi makes it easy to earn 2% back on virtually everything that you buy. You’ll get 1% back when you buy and another 1% back when you pay. This makes gaming purchases incredibly simple since you don’t have to worry about specific category bonuses or spending caps. Buy anything — and you’ll eventually receive 2% back.
If you have a Citi Premier® Card or Citi Prestige® Card associated with the same sign-in as your Citi Double Cash Card, you can convert cash back into transferable ThankYou rewards points. The information for the Citi Prestige card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Bank of America Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for digital purchases
Sign-up bonus: $200 cash rewards bonus after making at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening
Annual fee: $0
Why we like this card: This is the card’s earning structure: 3% cash back in the category of your choice each month (gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home improvement/furnishings); 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club purchases each quarter, then 1%), and 1% on everything else.
That online shopping category is a huge win for gamers who make purchases, well, online. From consoles to software and anything else you can imagine, you’ll get 3% back — as long as you select the online shopping category. This is a great bonus each quarter, especially with a no-annual-fee card.
And if you do your banking with Bank of America, you can ramp up the cash back earned with the Cash Rewards credit card by 25% to 75% across all categories, depending on the amount you have in eligible deposits with the bank via its Preferred Rewards program.
Honorable mention: The Business Platinum Card® from American Express
Last, but not least, you may also want to consider The Business Platinum Card® from American Express for your gaming expenses. For a limited time due to the pandemic, this card currently comes with a $400 annual credit ($200 for January-June and $200 for July-December) from Dell that goes a long way when it comes time to buy gaming-related items.
Is gaming included in the “Entertainment” category bonus on some cards?
Unfortunately, there is no hard-and-fast answer here. While you might consider all forms of gaming as entertainment, credit card issuers have a slightly different take. It all depends on how merchants code these specific purchases, so your mileage may vary.
For instance, if your Citi card has a bonus on entertainment — such as the Citi Premier does through Aug. 22, 2020 — you may be able to earn 2% back on gaming-related purchases. Citi defines entertainment spending as “live entertainment, live theatrical productions, concerts, live sporting events, movie theaters, amusement parks (including zoos, aquariums, circuses and carnivals), tourist attractions (including museums and art galleries), record stores, video rental stores and on-demand internet streaming media.”
Related reading: Best cards for entertainment
As with many category bonuses, where you buy from is just as important as what you’re actually purchasing. In most cases, using a card to maximize spending for everyday purchases (non-bonus spending) may make the most sense. If you really have an affinity towards PlayStation and Sony, you can go that route as well.
Keep all of this in mind and you’ll soon not just rack up wins in a game, but also in real-life with rewards, too.
Featured photo by Jacob Lund / Shutterstock
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- Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
- To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time.
- Balance Transfer Offer: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 13.99% - 23.99%, based on your creditworthiness.
- Balance Transfers do not earn cash back.
- If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance (including balance transfers) by the due date each month.
- There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
- The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 13.99% – 23.99% based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi's discretion.