By using a rewards credit card to to pay for your grocery and supermarket spending, you can earn hundreds of dollars worth of rewards each year.
Why? Well, if you’re like most Americans, food represents one of the biggest expenses each month. According to the USDA’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, a 4-person household on a low-cost meal plan spends an average of $785 per month on groceries, while those on a liberal food plan spend almost $1,200 per month.
So, which card can earn you the most on your supermarket spending? We compared some of the best supermarket credit cards available so that you can decide for yourself.
Our Top Ranked Supermarket Credit Card
Our top pick among supermarket credit cards handsomely rewards you for grocery spending plus dining, filling up your car, and more. This is because we chose the American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card. (Click here to read our complete review.)
The Blue Cash Preferred is the card to beat when it comes to maximum supermarket rewards. While the card has an annual fee, it offers the highest cash back rate for supermarkets among all major credit cards – a whopping 6%!
Here’s how it works:
6% back at supermarkets (on the first $6,000 in spending each year, then 1% back)
3% back at gas stations and select department stores
1% back on everything else
The card also comes with a $250 cash back bonus after you spend $1,000 during the first three months. It shouldn’t be hard to hit this threshold with grocery spending alone.
More Really Good Grocery Store Credit Cards
Depending on your shopping hazards and credit score, these options may be a very good way to earn rewards on supermarket spending.
Buy groceries at Target? You can save 5% on food with the Target REDcard. Target offers a few REDcards, including a debit card that draws money from your checking account and a basic store credit card, both of which save you an automatic 5% off most spending at Target.
The card also includes other perks like an extended time to return merchandise and free shipping at Target.com. You can also combine the 5% off with Cartwheel savings and coupons to maximize your grocery budget.
The Target REDcard is the best way to save on groceries aside from the American Express Blue Cash Preferred card and it has no annual fee.
The new Costco Anywhere Visa replaced the Costco American Express with boosted rewards. It’s now one of the most generous rewards cards around, although it isn’t one of the best cards for supermarket spending specifically.
The Costco Anywhere Visa from Citi earns you:
4% cash back on gas around the world, including at Costco (on the first $7,000 a year in spending, then 1%)
3% back on restaurant and travel purchases
2% back on other spending at Costco and Costco.com
1% back on everything else
The Costco Anywhere card has no annual fee, but you do need to pay for a Costco membership.
Prefer points to cash back? The American Express Everyday Preferred card is similar to the Blue Cash Everyday card but it earns Membership Rewards points instead of cash back with the same $95 annual fee.
Along with a 15,000 MR signup bonus after spending $1,000 in 3 months, you will earn:
3x points at supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year, then 1%)
2x points at gas stations
1x points on all other spending
If you use your card at least 30 times during a billing cycle, you will get 50% more points on those transactions
Membership Rewards points are among the most valuable rewards points given their flexibility. MR points can be transferred to popular airline and hotel loyalty programs with at least a 1:1 ratio or for booking travel, getting gift cards, earning statement credits, or shopping with points at popular retailers like Amazon.com.
Grocery Store Cards to Avoid
Unfortunately, some of the store cards issued by grocery store chains are not worth your time. These supermarket cards fail to provide real benefits when compared to the cards listed above. A great example of this is the Kroger 1-2-3 Rewards Credit Card.
Kroger is the largest supermarket chain in the United States with almost 2,800 direct and subsidiary locations throughout the country. If you shop at Krogers or a subsidiary, you have probably seen ads for the Kroger 1-2-3 Rewards Card.
Here’s how it works:
1x points on purchases outside Kroger stores
2x points on purchases at Kroger stores (excluding fuel)
3x points on Kroger Family of Brand products such as Kroger, Kroger Value, Private Selection, Pet Pride, Big K, Mirra, and Comforts for Baby.
You can also get an extra $0.25 per gallon for 3 months when you redeem 100 fuel points with your card.
Every 1,000 points is equal to $5 in Kroger Rewards Certificates which are sent every quarter.
While the card seems like a good deal at first glance, note that the points do not equate to a cash back amount. You will only earn a 0.5% rebate on normal spending, 1% back at Kroger, and 1.5% back on Kroger brands. This card just fails to deliver on in-store purchases, especially when compared to the Target Redcard. So, while it has no annual fee, you can do better.
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