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Fortunly's Guide

A Guide to the Best Sign-Up Bonus Credit Card Offers in 2021

By
G. Dautovic

May 26,2021


Credit card sign-up bonuses come in all shapes and sizes. Whether it’s in the form of cashback offers, points, or miles, new cardholders have the opportunity to earn a few hundred (if not a few thousand) dollars worth of bonuses if they choose wisely.

Picking the best option means finding the perfect match for your spending habits. After all, even the best sign-up bonus credit card won’t do you any good if it doesn’t offer solid rewards rates, flexible redemption opportunities, and multiple additional perks that reflect your style as a consumer.

Let’s take a look at what’s out there.

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The 8 Best Credit Cards with Sign-Up Bonus Offers

Citi Rewards+℠ Card Logo
Citi Rewards+℠ Card
4 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: 15,000 points
Rewards Rate: 1x-2x points
APR: 13.49%-23.49% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score 720-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months.
  • Get 15,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 within the first three months of account opening.
  • Earn two points per $1 spent at gas stations and supermarkets for the first $6,000 per year and one point per $1 spent thereafter plus one point on all other purchases; rewards round up to the nearest 10 points automatically.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Logo
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus
4 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: 30,000 points
Rewards Rate: 1x-2x points
APR: 15.99%-22.99% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 690-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Receive 30,000 points and the Companion Pass® benefit after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.
  • Get 3,000 bonus points after your card membership anniversary each year.
  • Earn two points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and one point for every $1 you spend on all other purchases.

 

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Logo
Capital One® Venture® Rewards
4.5 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: 60,000 bonus miles
Rewards Rate: 2x bonus miles
APR: 17.24%-24.49% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 690-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Receive 60,000 bonus miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.
  • Earn unlimited two bonus miles per $1 spent in all spending categories.
  • Get up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® .
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express Logo
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
4 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: $250 cash back
Rewards Rate: 1%-3% cashback
APR: 13.99%-23.99%(variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 690-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Earn $250 cash back after spending $1,000 in purchases in the first three months of account opening.
  • Get 3% cash back on purchases made at US supermarkets (up to $6,000, then 1%); earn 2% cash back at US gas stations and select department stores; receive 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • 0% introductory APR on purchases for 15 months from the date of account opening.
United Gateway® Card Logo
United Gateway® Card
4.5 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: 20,000 bonus miles
Rewards Rate: 1x-3x bonus miles
APR: 16.49%-23.49% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 670-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Earn 20,000 bonus miles after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first three months since opening the credit card account.
  • Receive three bonus miles for each $1 spent on groceries up to $1,500 per month; earn two bonus miles for each $1 spent on all United purchases, purchases made at gas station, and on local transit and commuting; get one bonus mile on all other spending.
  • Get 25% cash back on all United inflight purchases.
Bank of America® Travel Rewards Card Logo
Bank of America® Travel Rewards Card
4 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: 25,000 bonus points
Rewards Rate: 1.5x bonus points
APR: 14.99%-22.99% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 670-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Get 25,000 bonus points when you spend a minimum of $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening and redeem the points for a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.
  • All cardmembers earn unlimited 1.5 bonus points for every $1 they spend on all purchases, no restrictions.
  • Members of the Preferred Rewards program earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase.
Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card Logo
Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card
4 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: $200 cash bonus
Rewards Rate: 1%-3% cash back
APR: 13.99%-23.99% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 690-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Get $200 cash rewards bonus after spending at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of credit card account opening.
  • Earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice: dining, travel, gas, online shopping, drug stores, or home improvement and furnishings; get 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs; receive 1% cash back on all other purchases. The 3% and 2% cash back categories are capped at $2,500 combined, earn 1% after you reach the maximum.
  • Introductory 0% purchase APR for the first 12 billing cycles.
Chase Freedom Unlimited® Credit Card Logo
Chase Freedom Unlimited® Credit Card
4.5 stars Our Rating
Apply Now Read Full Review
Welcome Bonus: $200 cash bonus
Rewards Rate: 1.5%-5% cash back
APR: 14.99%–23.74% (variable)
Recommended Credit Score: 690-850
Key Facts
Product Details
Pros & Cons
  • Earn a $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.
  • Get 5% on travel purchases made through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal; earn 3% on dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services; get 3% on drugstore purchases; receive 1.5% on all other purchases.
  • 0% introductory purchase  APR for 15 months from account opening.
Evaluation Criteria

Our Criteria for Evaluating Credit Cards with Welcome Bonus Offers

Considering how competitive the credit card market has recently become, it’s no wonder consumers often find themselves overwhelmed with the hundreds of offers they come across. If you’re looking for a new credit card and don’t know where to start, this article is for you.

We’ve compared the upsides and downsides of the sign-up bonuses for several top card choices to determine the most beneficial options for different consumer habits and create a foolproof methodology. 

Here are the most important factors we recommend you consider while looking for the best credit card with a sign-up bonus to match your spending style.

Sign-Up Bonus

A sign-up bonus offered by credit card issuers is essentially an incentive for a new user to complete a spending task. Many new cardholders are dazzled by the hundreds of dollars they might receive as a bonus that they fail to check whether the offer is too good to be true.

There are two equally important aspects to a welcome offer - the bonus amount (in points/miles, or cashback) and the assignment used to qualify for it. Simply put, no matter how generous an offer, it won’t do you any good if you can’t do your part to claim it. 

Rewards and Redemption Options

When looking for the best sign-up bonus credit card, you should make sure that it offers a solid rewards rate. Regardless of whether you choose a points/miles-based card or even a cashback credit card, its rewards and flexible redemption options should be in sync with your spending habits.

Some cards offer tiered rewards rates that require you to keep track of your spending and returns if you want to maximize the value of your rewards in a given purchasing category. Flat-rate rewards credit card options don’t require you to keep track of where you’re shopping, as you’ll receive the same rate on all purchasing categories. 

All major credit cards let you use the bonus points, miles, or cashback you get as part of the best introductory credit card offers for a variety of purposes. For travel rewards cards, these usually include gift cards, as well as hotel and airline transfers. For cashback cards, you can typically use these bonuses for statement credit, balance transfers, and checks.

Additional Benefits

While the initial offerings for signing up are certainly among the most lucrative benefits a new cardholder gets, there are a few more perks that you can enjoy even after the honeymoon period is over. In some cases, it’s the additional benefits that compensate for high annual fees or poor sign-up offers. These perks can vary greatly from card to card and mostly include shopping protection, extended warranty, different types of insurance, flight upgrades, free hotel stays, and annual bonuses.

APR and Fees

The best intro credit card offers may grab your attention, but you should also take a look at the many potential fees before you decide to apply for the credit card you think you want. As far as interest rates go, credit cards come with variable annual percentage rates (APR), charged on both purchases and balance transfers. However, some cards offer a 0% intro APR on both transaction types for a limited period (usually 12 to 15 months). 

The most important fees to look out for include annual card membership fees, cash advance fees, balance transfer fees, foreign transaction fees, and penalty fees such as late payment and returned payment charges. 

Credit Score Requirements

You’ve done the research and found the best credit card with an intro bonus. Before you get too excited, you should make sure that you actually qualify for the financial product in question. While credit cards aren’t impossible to get, keep in mind that the most attractive options usually require a credit score of at least 690, and even then approval is not guaranteed.

Quick Breakdown

Our Picks for the Best Sign-Up Bonus Credit Card Offers:

What's the Credit Card with the Best Sign-Up Bonus Offer? In-Depth Reviews

Citi Rewards+℠ Card Review
Citi Rewards+℠ Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
15,000 points
APR:
13.49% - 23.49% (variable)
Annual Fee:
N/A
Rewards Rate:
1x-2x points
Recommended Credit Score:
720-850

A good fit for low spenders who generally make a lot of small purchases, the Citi Rewards+ card is a strong competitor among cards with no annual fees. It’s also one of the best bonus credit cards, particularly when it comes to redemption options. Add the “round up” offer and the “points back” benefit to the mix and you’ll understand why this credit card remains a favorite among modest spenders.

Sign-Up Bonus

One of the things that makes the Citi Rewards+℠ Card a popular choice in this market is its generous introductory offer. As a new cardholder, you get a one-time sign-up bonus of 15,000 points. But to claim it, you’ll have to spend at least $1,000 in the three months following the opening of your account. 

Rewards and Redemption Options

As one of the best credit cards, the Citi Rewards+℠ Card sweetens your purchases with ThankYou® points: you get two ThankYou® points per dollar spent at supermarkets and refueling at gas stations for the first $6,000 you spend in 12 months. You’ll also get a single ThankYou® point per dollar on all purchases made in other places or after the initial 12-month period.

The Citi Rewards+ offers multiple redemption options for the rewards you’ve accumulated. You can use the points to shop at Amazon.com and BestBuy.com, or redeem them for gift cards or travel rewards via Citi’s ThankYou.com platform. Additionally, cardholders receive 10% of ThankYou® points back for the first 100,000 points they redeem in a year.

Additional Benefits

Well-known as a credit card with a good sign-up bonus, Citi Rewards+ also has a unique point-counting policy. Unlike other credit cards on our list, this option automatically rounds up your bonus to the nearest 10-point mark on every purchase, with no cap. To put it simply, a $2 coffee will earn you 10 points, while a $12 meal gets rounded up to 20 points.

APR and Fees

The Citi Rewards+ credit card is among the most competitive options cost-wise. First of all, there isn’t an annual membership fee. Second of all, new cardholders get to enjoy a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. After this credit card promo period expires, expect to be charged a variable APR of between 13.49% and 23.49%.

Also, note that there’s a balance transfer fee (3% of the amount of each transfer or $5, whichever is greater), a cash advance fee (5% of the amount of each cash advance or $10 - the greater of the two), a 3% foreign transaction fee, a late payment charge of up to $40, and a returned payment fee that can also amount to $40.

The Bottom Line

Although Citi Rewards+ doesn’t offer the highest credit card bonus, the fact that you won’t have to spend more than $1,000 over the first three months to get on the welcome wagon makes it much more competitive. It also stands out from the crowd as the only card that automatically rounds up your rewards to the nearest 10 points on literally any purchase.

Overall, this Citi card is an excellent option for those looking for a way to maximize their rewards on everyday purchases and claim the sign-up offer quickly, but not that great for users who’d like a larger credit card promotion amount.

Reasons to Apply

  • Flexible bonus redemption
  • 0% intro APR for 15 months
  • Rewards round up to the nearest 10 points
+ Show more
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card Review
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
30,000 points
APR:
15.99%-22.99% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$69
Rewards Rate:
1x-2x points
Recommended Credit Score:
690-850

Offering one of the best credit card sign-up bonuses, Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus is a solid travel card. Although it doesn’t offer as many perks as the other two options available through Southwest’s partnership with Chase, it boasts the lowest annual fee, good rewards rates, and flexible redemption opportunities.

Sign-Up Bonus

Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus presents a 30,000-point welcome bonus to its new users. All you have to do to claim it is spend $5,000 on purchases over the first three months of account ownership. 

Annual card membership rewards are also part of the package; starting from your first anniversary, you’ll receive 3,000 bonus points for every 12 months of use.

Rewards and Redemption Options

In addition to one of the best credit card sign-up bonus opportunities, Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus also offers a solid rewards policy. Cardholders receive two points per dollar spent on Southwest Airlines purchases, as well as each dollar spent on products and services provided by the airline’s hotel and car rental partners.

Some of the eligible hotel chains are Marriott, Best Western, and Hyatt, while Hertz, Avis, and several others are among the included car rental companies. There are no double bonus points on dining or grocery stores, but you’ll still receive a point per dollar spent on those and all other types of purchases.

As far as redemption options go, Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus is probably the best travel credit card with a sign-up bonus. There’s a wide variety of redemption options including flight tickets, hotel stays, car rentals, gift cards, and merchandise. 

If you’re looking to get the biggest bang for your buck, we suggest you use your points for airfares. Southwest lets you redeem your rewards via any of its three fare tiers (Anytime, Business Select, and Wanna Get Away). Although the least flexible of the three options, Wanna Get Away tickets come with the most generous points redemption deals.

Additional Benefits

Access to the Southwest Companion Pass benefit is another great thing about this sign-up bonus credit card. This unique feature lets you pick a friend or a family member to fly with you for free each time you buy a plane ticket or redeem your points to cover the cost.

However, keep in mind that the requirements for this buy-one-get-one-free perk are hard to achieve. You’ll need to accumulate 125,000 points to qualify and the Companion Pass will be valid for the remainder of the year in question, plus the entire following year, but not indefinitely.

APR and Fees

Low interest rates and fees can help you distinguish between the best credit card offers. Unlike some of the other competing options, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus does come with an annual charge. However, the $69 fee is relatively low for an airline credit card. And while there is no introductory APR discount, the regular annual percentage rate ranges between 15.99% and 22.99% (variable). 

Note that you’ll also face balance transfer fees ($5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer), cash advance fees ($10 or 5% of the amount of each transaction), and foreign transaction fees (3% of the amount in US dollars). In addition to that, penalty charges such as late and returned payments can go up to $39.

The Bottom Line

With one of the best credit card deals when it comes to sign-up bonus offers and rewards policies, Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus is a good choice for frequent flyers. The cost of what may seem like a high annual fee is easily justified by the card membership anniversary bonus and access to the unique Southwest Companion Pass benefit. 

In conclusion, while this Southwest credit card isn’t the flashiest of the three in the Rapid Rewards family, nor is it aimed at frequent international flyers, it’s still one of the best credit cards for US domestic travelers.

Reasons to Apply

  • Annual card membership bonus
  • Low annual fee
  • Companion Pass benefit
+ Show more
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card Review
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
60,000 bonus miles
APR:
17.24%-24.49% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$95
Rewards Rate:
2x bonus miles
Recommended Credit Score:
690-850

High rewards, flexible redemption options, and a huge welcome bonus with the Capital One Venture Rewards credit card will catch the eye of any prospective cardholder. Thanks to its premium-level added benefits, this card is a particularly great option for frequent travelers.

Sign-Up Bonus

As maybe the best sign-up bonus credit card offer, the welcome bonus given to new Capital One Venture Rewards cardholders certainly deserves the spotlight. New cardholders get the opportunity to earn 60,000 bonus miles by spending at least $3,000 on purchases made within three months of opening the account. 

Rewards and Redemption Options 

On top of one of the best credit card bonus offers, the Capital One Venture Rewards card is also well-known for rewarding its users with two miles per each dollar spent on practically any type of purchase. There are no upper limits on how many miles you can earn, and so long as your account is open, your miles won’t expire. 

As one of the most flexible travel cards, the Capital One Venture Rewards card offers plenty of redemption options. You can use your miles for travel shopping in the Capital One Travel center (or outside of the credit card company’s network), or redeem them for gift cards, statement credit, and checks. 

Another great thing about this credit card with a sign-up bonus is that it also lets you redeem your bonus miles via PayPal. We suggest you save your miles for travel purchases (plane tickets, vacation rentals, car rentals, etc), as that’s the way to get the most value out of them.

Additional Benefits

In addition to flexible redemption options, this travel rewards credit card also comes with a long list of bonus perks. These include up to $100 credit for TSA Precheck/Global Entry, travel accident insurance, car rental insurance, roadside assistance, virtual card numbers for safe online shopping, and extended warranty on eligible purchases. 

APR and Fees

While users praise Capital One Venture Rewards for providing one of the best credit card bonus offers, it’s not the most affordable financial product of its kind. However, considering all the additional perks you can benefit from for the annual fee of $95, it isn’t the most expensive card either. 

The Capital One Venture Rewards card has an immediate annual percentage rate, ranging between 17.24% and 24.49%. Additional charges include a 3% transaction fee on balance transfers, a $10 fee or 3% of the amount for cash advances, and a late payment penalty of up to $40, but there are no international transaction fees. 

The Bottom Line

Given that there are cards on our list that don’t charge annual fees, Capital One Venture Rewards isn’t the most affordable solution on the market, despite being the highest signup bonus credit card. However, considering that the Capital One Venture Rewards card comes with highly flexible redemption opportunities and a long list of added benefits, it’s safe to say that this travel rewards card is worth the $95 annual charge. 

Reasons to Apply

  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Multiple additional benefits
  • Flexible redemption options
+ Show more
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express Review
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
$250 cash back
APR:
13.99%-23.99% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$0
Rewards Rate:
1%-3% cash back
Recommended Credit Score:
690-850

With one of the best credit card bonuses for new members, the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express is an excellent cashback card. Tailored to families who spend a lot on commuting and groceries, this card offers generous rewards on purchases made in US supermarkets and gas stations.

Given that it doesn’t charge an annual fee, Blue Cash Everyday may also appeal to users looking to avoid card maintenance costs.

Sign-Up Bonus

Amex’s Blue Cash Everyday is one of the most popular cashback cards, primarily because it has one of the best credit card introductory offers. The deal is simple - as a new cardmember, you receive $250 cashback after spending $1,000 in purchases on your new card in the first 3 months. Upon reaching this spending milestone,you’ll receive your bonus in the form of a statement credit.

Rewards and Redemption Options

Designed for the average consumer’s spending habits, Blue Cash Everyday offers generous cashback on everyday spending opportunities. Users get 3% cashback when they shop for groceries at US supermarkets (up to the first $6,000 in a year and 1% afterward), 2% cashback at US gas stations and select department stores, and 1% on all other purchases.

As the top credit card for bonus offers, Blue Cash Everyday makes redeeming your rewards simple and easy. As soon as you meet the minimum threshold of $25, you’ll be able to redeem your cashback in the form of a merchandise purchase, statement credit, or gift card. Note that using your rewards to make your minimum payment isn’t an option.

Additional Benefits

Blue Cash Everyday by American Express comes with quite a few additional features. For instance, you’ll be covered by purchase protection when shopping, and you’ll get insurance for your rental car while traveling.

Moreover, other Amex credit card promotions and benefits will be made available to you, such as member-only events, exclusive ticket presales, fraud protection, year-end summaries, and the Pay It Plan It feature, which lets you control how you pay your balance.

APR and Fees

Cost-wise, Blue Cash Everyday is once again a leader among cash bonus credit cards. First of all, this card offers a 0% introductory APR for the first 15 months. After the promotional period ends, the ongoing APR ranges between 13.99% and 23.99%. Second of all, there are no annual fees.

In other words, not only does Blue Cash Everyday offer one of the best credit card promotions for new users, but it also doesn’t bother you with any annual card membership charges. 

However, there are a few transaction and penalty fees to be aware of when making your decision. You’ll be charged the greater of $10 or 5% of the total amount for each cash advance, 2.7% of the transaction amount for each foreign transaction (after conversion to US dollars), and up to $40 for late or returned payments.

The Bottom Line

As one of the best cash bonus credit cards on the market, Blue Cash Everyday is an excellent choice for big spenders at US supermarkets and gas stations. It’s also a good option for those looking for the smartest way to pay off a high-interest credit card balance or finance a large purchase.

On the other hand, we don’t recommend this card to consumers who may still maintain a large balance after the 0% APR period, or those who prefer a simpler rewards policy. 

Reasons to Apply

  • No annual fees
  • 0% intro APR for 15 months
  • Generous rewards on US supermarket purchases
+ Show more
United Gateway® Card Review
United Gateway® Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
20,000 bonus miles
APR:
16.49%-23.49% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$0
Rewards Rate:
1x-3x bonus miles
Recommended Credit Score:
670-850

Looking for the best credit card bonus for frequent flyers? The United GatewaySM Card could be your best travel companion. This JP Chase & Morgan card is designed for people who travel a lot.

With a great sign-up bonus, zero annual membership fees, and an enticing rewards program, this is a must-have accessory for frequent travelers on United Airlines and the other 26 airlines in its Star Alliance rewards network.

Sign-Up Bonus

To receive your welcome bonus, you’ll need to spend at least $1,000 on purchases, after which United will credit your MileagePlus account with 20,000 travel miles. You’ll need to meet this requirement within 3 months of signing up for the card. It’s a nice credit card bonus offer, especially considering there aren’t any annual fees for this card.

Rewards and Redemption Options

Frequent and no-so-frequent flyers will reap the benefits of this card. Bonuses are mostly flight-related. Each dollar spent is converted into bonus miles according to a conversion rate of $1 to three miles for purchases made at grocery stores up to $1,500 per month and to two miles for United purchases, local transit, and gas station purchases.

Other purchases are converted on a one-mile-per-dollar basis. Additionally, you’ll get 25% cash back for every in-flight purchase you make while traveling with United Airlines, including the on-board Wi-Fi.

Once you’ve stacked up some miles with your top sign-up bonus credit card, you can convert them to free flights, car rentals, hotel stays, electronics gear, or other merchandise. The MileagePlus website serves as the hub for all the rewards conversions.

Additional Benefits

The Gateway Card will net you some additional benefits, especially when traveling abroad. Payments you make outside the US aren’t subject to foreign transaction fees, for example - that can save you a substantial sum. The card also provides travel insurance, reimbursing you up to $1,500 per person or $6,000 per journey if you have to cancel your pre-paid trip due to an unforeseen mishap.

APR and Fees

Unlike some of the market’s other top sign-up bonus credit cards, United doesn’t waive interest during the introductory period. That said, APR ranges are kept within industry averages, varying from 16.49% to 23.49%. The Gateway Card comes with no annual fees, making it a great proposition for thrifty customers.

There aren’t many additional fees to worry about, either. Exactly two kinds of fees are applicable to this card. First is the balance transfer fee, which totals either $5 or 5% of the transaction, whichever is greater. The other is the cash advance fee, which is either $10 or 5% of the transaction amount, whichever is greater.

The Bottom Line

If you frequently fly with United or a Star Alliance partner, the Gateway Card is the best rewards credit card you can get. You’ll quickly rack up thousands of bonus miles that let you fly free or snatch up some really snazzy gifts from the membership hub. You can even use the company’s concierge service to handle your chores. Best of all, it all comes with no annual fees.

Reasons to Apply

  • Generous rewards program
  • No fees on foreign transactions
  • $0 annual membership
+ Show more
Bank of America® Travel Rewards Card Review
Bank of America® Travel Rewards Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
25,000 bonus points
APR:
14.99%-22.99% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$0
Rewards Rate:
1.5x bonus points on everything
Recommended Credit Score:
690-850

Top credit card sign-up bonuses have become quite enticing in recent years. There are many solid no-fees travel cards available to frequent travelers, so credit card companies are falling over each other to offer you the best and most exciting bonuses when you sign up.

The Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card was born to address this competitive market. The card comes with many benefits, including a generous bonus and a very exciting rewards plan.

Sign-Up Bonus

Bank of America’s card doesn’t offer any cashbacks. Instead, you’ll be collecting points - and there is quite a bonus to be secured after you sign up. The Travel Rewards card is the best intro bonus credit card for its simplicity.

If you make $1,000 in transactions using this card within 90 days of signing up, your account will be rewarded with 25,000 points that you can immediately spend on various rewards.

Rewards and Redemption Options

Like the introductory offer, the rewards program is streamlined. There are no special requirements. For each $1 you spend, your account is credited with 1.5 points - it’s as simple as that. It doesn’t matter whether you used your card to fill up at the gas station, buy groceries, or reserve a hotel room online: It all counts. Points don’t expire, and there are no blackout dates for your rewards.

But with this credit card, sign-up bonuses don’t stop there. Members of Preferred Rewards club score even more points - up to 75% more per transaction. There’s a handy calculator at the Bank of America website that can help you estimate how many points you’ll earn in a year.

As for the rewards, you can convert points into hotel bookings, airplane tickets, cruises, rentals, even whole vacation packages. Or you can simply convert your points into cash, albeit at a lower rate compared to physical rewards.

Additional Benefits

Since this is a Visa card, you’re entitled to 24/7 concierge services thanks to the Visa Signature promotion. Worried about your FICO score? You can check its status for free every month if you’d like. In addition to the Travel Rewards card’s top credit card sign-up bonus, international transactions come with $0 fees, and you’ll be able to use this card practically anywhere in the world.

APR and Fees

During your first year with the Bank of America Travel Rewards Card, the APR is set to 0%. After 12 months, it varies from 14.99% to 22.99%, which is slightly under the average APR today. This card comes with no annual membership fee, too, so the first 12 months are quite care-free for users of the Travel Rewards plan.

There’s just one fee aside from the APR. It’s the balance transfer fee, a small fee that gets added on top of every transfer. This is a low fee sign-up bonus credit card, as the fee is just 3% or $10.

The Bottom Line

For Bank of America customers who travel a lot, signing up for the Travel Rewards card is a no-brainer. The card’s generous sign-up bonus, excellent rewards program, and $0 annual fee make for an easy recommendation.

Reasons to Apply

  • No annual or foreign transaction fees
  • 0% intro APR for 12 months
  • Extra rewards for Preferred Rewards members
+ Show more
Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card Review
Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
$200 cash bonus
APR:
13.99%-23.99% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$0
Rewards Rate:
1%-3% cash back
Recommended Credit Score:
690-850

Bank of America offers two of the industry’s best credit cards with sign-up bonuses. We’ve talked about the card that rewards frequent travelers, so let’s focus now on a cashback card for, well, frequent shoppers.

The red Cash Rewards credit card is another Visa Signature card from Bank America that offers concierge service alongside a neat rewards program. Let’s look at how it differs from its steel-blue sibling.

Sign-Up Bonus

This is a cashback card, so it’s natural that the welcome offer is based on cash. Bank of America will reward you with a $200 cash bonus once you make at least $1,000 in purchases within 90 days of signing up. It’s a very straightforward bonus, just like the benefits that come with the bank’s other cards.

Rewards and Redemption Options

As the best sign-up bonus credit card, the Bank of America Cash Rewards card has a generous rewards scheme. The offer is very interesting. Each month, you choose a category that will deliver you a 3% cashback bonus: gas, travel, dining, online shopping, furnishings, or drug stores.

You can select only one of these categories for your 3% cashback bonus each month, so plan your purchases accordingly. 

Shopping at grocery stores and wholesalers nets you a 2% cashback bonus, while all other purchases generate a 1% bonus. The biggest bonuses are limited to the first $2,500 you spend each month. Your purchase and bonus status can be monitored with a free mobile app.

Additional Benefits

The best credit card sign-up bonus offers aside, the Cash Rewards credit card delivers a handful of equally interesting benefits. Visa concierge services are available to you 24/7, along with monthly updates of your FICO score that can be checked for free via a mobile app.

The card also comes with overdraft protection, an optional service that can prevent overdrawing your checking account and all the attendant returned checks and declined purchases.

APR and Fees

Bank of America charges an industry-average APR for its reward cards. The APR is variable and ranges from 13.99% to 23.99%. But for the first 12 months, it’s set to 0%. That’s a very enticing offer, especially considering the $0 annual fee. These factors make this the top credit card with sign-up bonus offers.

That doesn’t mean you’ll be collecting rewards completely free. If you perform any balance transfers, the bank will charge you 3% or a minimum of $10.

The Bottom Line

Bank of America is definitely the leader among banks that offer reward cards. Great cashback bonuses and a generous, no-strings-attached welcome offer make the Cash Rewards credit card one of the best choices for shoppers in America.

Reasons to Apply

  • $200 cashback bonus
  • 0% APR for 12 months
  • No membership fees
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Chase Freedom Unlimited® Credit Card Review
Chase Freedom Unlimited® Credit Card Review Logo Apply Now

On Official Website

Welcome Bonus:
$200 cash bonus
APR:
14.99%-23.74% (variable)
Annual Fee:
$0
Rewards Rate:
1.5%-5% cash back
Recommended Credit Score:
690-850

If you’re looking for the best credit card sign-up bonus offer, especially one that can be scored with ease, look no further than Chase’s Freedom Unlimited card. This Visa card comes with a lot of tempting incentives on top of a bonus that’s pretty enticing compared to the competition’s. Here’s how it all works.

Sign-Up Bonus

This Chase credit card has a dual bonus for new customers. First up is a straight-up cashback award of $200 when you spend $500 in the first 3 months. You also receive a 5% cashback bonus on your grocery shopping for the entire first year you use your card. This bonus is limited to $12,000, and it excludes purchases made at Walmart and Target.

Rewards and Redemption Options

Like every other candidate for best sign-up bonus credit card, Chase Freedom Unlimited doles out regular rewards after the sign-up bonus.

You will receive 5% in cashback rewards for each travel purchase made through Chase Ultimate Rewards program, 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and restaurant orders, including fast food and deliveries. All other purchases are eligible for a 1.5% cashback bonus.

Best of all, Chase doesn’t impose any time limits on your cashback rewards, and there’s no minimum amount that you can redeem. If you link your account to Amazon, you’ll be able to use your rewards with the popular online store during the checkout process.

Additional Benefits

With this credit card, the best sign-up bonus is just the start. If you’re a frequent traveler, you’ll be glad to hear that Chase offers trip cancellation and interruption insurance. It’s the standard policy - reimbursement of up to $1,500 per person or $6,000 for the whole trip if you have pre-paid with your Chase Freedom Unlimited card.

APR and Fees

Chase’s APR ranges are smack in the middle of the standard range. For your first year, the APR is 0%. Later, the APR converts to a rate based on your creditworthiness and the Prime Rate - something from 14.99% to 23.74%. Chase assesses a $0 annual membership fee.

One disadvantage is that Chase charges a 3% fee on all foreign transactions. Compared to other products in our sign-up bonus credit card reviews, that’s not a great deal. Visa cards are great for traveling, but only if the card issuer doesn’t charge extra fees for using them abroad.

The Bottom Line

Chase has a lot of great credit card deals right now, so it’s very easy to recommend the Freedom Unlimited card. It has one of the most enticing sign-up bonuses, big rewards for shoppers, and some valuable extras for people who travel a lot.

Reasons to Apply

  • Easy-to-earn sign-up bonus
  • 0% APR for 12 months
  • Big cashbacks
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FAQ
What is a credit card sign-up bonus? +

In a nutshell, a credit card bonus is an incentive offered by credit card issuers to get new card users to complete a certain task. Many credit cards come with a welcome bonus, which means that new cardholders stand to gain rewards such as points, miles, or cashback offers.

However, to claim these bonuses, cardholders must meet the credit card issuer’s requirements, usually by reaching a certain minimum spending requirement within a given time frame.

How can you maximize sign-up bonuses? +

Applying for the right credit card with the best sign-up bonus at the right time and sticking to a plan on how to reach the minimum spending threshold can help you get the most out of its bonus offer.

We highly recommend you learn everything about multiple bonus opportunities beforehand and keep an eye on the bonus after you apply for the credit card you’ve chosen. We also suggest you time your application carefully, watch out for hidden fees, be completely aware of what purchase types count toward the spending minimum, and be careful about returning items.

Is it better to get a cash or points sign-up bonus? +

The best credit card intro offers usually come in the form of bonus points, miles, or cashback offers. While both travel credit cards and cashback cards work the same in the sense that they both offer welcome bonuses and ongoing rewards, the ways a user can redeem these incentives and the redemption rates constitute the essential distinction between the two financial product types. 

The deal is simple with cashback cards - one cashback percentage point equals one cent per each dollar spent. As far as point- and mile-based cards go, one point or mile isn’t a fixed-rate commodity and it rarely equals one cent. 

Note that a credit card welcome bonus, additional perks, and even fees are all things you should consider when choosing the right option for you.

To put it simply, if getting the maximum value out of a card is your top priority - even though you’ll need to put in a lot of work into it - you should apply for a credit card that lets you earn points or miles. However, if you don’t have the time or inclination to put so much effort into tracking how you spend, cashback rewards credit cards are the way to go.

Which credit card has the best signup bonus? +

Based on our research, the list of the best sign-up bonus credit card offers includes:

  • Citi Rewards+℠ Card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card
  • Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
  • Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
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