Review of the Wells Fargo Active Cash card
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Wells Fargo Active Cash Card overview
The no-annual-fee Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card (rates & fees) offers a solid 2% cash reward on every purchase and an appealing welcome offer. And with no annual fee and a handful of other perks, it could be a good option for those who want a rewarding yet simple card in their wallets. Card Rating*: ⭐⭐⭐½
*Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
Credit card rewards can often be complicated with many limited-time offers, transfer partners and high annual fees. The Wells Fargo Active Cash card takes a simple approach by offering unlimited 2% cash reward on purchases. There are no rotating or bonus spend categories to remember.
It’s also a Visa Signature card, which means it has many perks and benefits that are often seen on more premium cards.
Here’s everything you need to know about the Wells Fargo Active Cash card.
Who is this credit card for?
The lack of an annual fee makes the Wells Fargo Active Cash card appealing to all types of credit card users, but it’s a particularly good option for beginners. The Active Cash card’s unlimited 2% reward on purchases is great for those who want the benefits of a credit card without the hassle of figuring out the best earning potential.
Other cards may offer higher cash reward in certain categories — such as dining and travel — but for users looking for an all-purpose card, the Active Cash is worth considering.
Wells Fargo is also offering 0% introductory APR for the first 15 months from account opening on qualifying purchases and balance transfers (a variable APR from 15.74%, 20.74%, or 25.74% will apply after that). This makes the Active Cash card a great pick if you are looking to finance a large purchase or consolidate debt.
The card does have a 3% foreign transaction fee, so cardholders who regularly travel or spend internationally should reconsider and opt for a card without foreign transaction fees.
Current welcome offer
The Wells Fargo Active Cash card is offering a $200 cash rewards bonus when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first three months of account opening. This doesn’t hold a candle to the top travel rewards cards on the market, but since many no-annual-fee cards offer small (or no) sign-up bonuses, the $200 makes the Active Cash stand out if you are in the market for a cash reward card with no annual fee.
Some of the more notable perks on the Active Cash include cellphone protection and zero liability protection. When you pay your monthly phone bill with the Active Cash card, Wells Fargo will cover up to $600 (up to twice per year) in the case of damage or theft.
Meanwhile, with zero liability protection, if an unauthorized purchase is made on your credit card, the activity will be promptly reported, and you will not be held responsible.
The Wells Fargo Active Cash is also a Visa Signature card and comes equipped with benefits such as 24/7 concierge service and access to Visa’s Luxury Hotel Collection.
These are solid benefits for a card with no annual fee.
The Wells Fargo Active Cash card is a great way to earn a standard rate of return on purchases. You will earn 2% cash reward in the form of cash rewards on purchases — including travel, rideshare services, dining and more. Cash rewards will not expire as long as the account remains open.
There are no bonus categories, so qualifying purchases will earn the same amount of cash reward. However, cardholders do not earn cash reward on balance transfers, cash equivalents (like gift cards and money orders), lottery tickets or casino chips.
The cash rewards you earn can be redeemed as statement credits to cover purchases starting at $1. However, you must have enough rewards in your account to cover the entire transaction. In other words, the $200 in rewards you earn as part of the welcome offer can’t be used for a statement credit on a $300 purchase.
Cash rewards can also be redeemed for a deposit to your Wells Fargo checking account or as a payment toward the principal on a Wells Fargo mortgage. Other redemption options include cash from a Wells Fargo ATM in $20 increments (only available with a Wells Fargo debit card) as well as gift cards in $25 increments.
Which cards compete with the Wells Fargo Active Cash card?
The cash rewards credit card world is filled with no-annual-fee cards, but only a few can compare to the Active Cash.
The Citi® Double Cash Card is considered one of the best cash reward cards on the market and offers unlimited cash rewards on all purchases of up to 2% (1% when you buy and 1% as you pay). Like the Wells Fargo Active Cash card, it has a 3% foreign transaction fee. However, unlike the Active Cash card, the Citi Double Cash card does not offer a sign-up bonus.
In addition, you can effectively convert the earnings on your Double Cash card into full Citi ThankYou Rewards points if you also have a card like the Citi Premier® Card in your wallet — which could lead to outsized value.
Another cash reward favorite is the Discover it Cash Back card, which offers 5% cash rewards on the first $1,500 in purchases that you make each quarter at select retailers (that rotate every quarter; enrollment required). All other purchases provide 1% cash rewards. In addition, Discover will match all the cash rewards you earn during the first 12 consecutive billing periods that your new account is open. It also charges no foreign transaction fees.
Depending on your spending habits (especially in the first year), the Discover it card can provide just as much value than the Wells Fargo Active Cash card — if not more.
The information for the Discover it Cash Back 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.
The Wells Fargo Active Cash card is a great cash rewards card for people looking for simple rewards structure. With no annual fee and a $200 sign-up bonus after spending $1,000 in the first three months of account opening, the Active Cash is a great beginner card, and it even layers on some solid perks like cellphone coverage.
That said, more experienced credit card users may feel it is missing the ability to maximize earning potential. It’s also not a great option for international travelers, as the card has foreign transaction fees on purchases made outside the U.S.
However, if you’re in the market for a no-frills, cash rewards card with no annual fee, the Wells Fargo Active Cash card could be the perfect addition to your wallet.
Official application link: Wells Fargo Active Cash card
Featured photo by The Points Guy.
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