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Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

  • On Bank of America's Secure Website
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Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

Editor's Rating: 4.0/5.0
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

Editor's Rating

{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

4.0/5.0

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer.

The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is a decent cash back card, but it really stands out for people who have Bank of America accounts. The credit card itself provides a solid cash back rewards rate across several categories, including rare ones like drug stores and furniture stores. Below, we highlight some more pros and cons for this card and compare it to other similar cards that you may wish to look at.

Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card Review: An Excellent Cash Back Card for Bank of America Members

  • On Bank of America's Secure Website
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Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

  • On Bank of America's Secure Website
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$200 cash rewards bonus after making at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening.
  • No annual fee
  • $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
  • Earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice, 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and unlimited 1% on all other purchases
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 15.49% - 25.49% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee (min $10) applies to all balance transfers
  • No expiration on rewards
  • If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25% - 75% more cash back on every purchase
  • No annual fee
  • $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
  • Earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice, 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and unlimited 1% on all other purchases
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 15.49% - 25.49% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee (min $10) applies to all balance transfers
  • No expiration on rewards
  • If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25% - 75% more cash back on every purchase
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.49% - 25.49% Variable APR on purchases
Credit Needed
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"There are various types of credit scores. Each creditor uses a variety of different types of credit scores to make lending decisions."}
Excellent/Good
Editor's Rating
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

Our Thoughts on the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

A simple, no-frills cash rewards card—the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card has $0 annual fee and is great for everyday purchases. The card has a 3%/2%/1% reward tier structure that allows you to choose a category for the 3% back.

3% Cash Back Categories
GasOnline Shopping
DiningTravel
Drug StoreHome Improvement/Furnishings

Despite being only able to choose one category, which you can change month to month, the wide range of available categories makes this a great card for rare cash back opportunities at drug stores or home improvement stores. Another feature on this card is a typical $200 signup bonus after making at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening. However, if you have a Bank of America Preferred Rewards account, you can earn 25% - 75% more cash back on every purchase.

Where the Card Could do Better

Although you can choose a category for 3% cash back and you get 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, they are capped at a combined $2,500 every quarter. So if you spend $2,000 on online shopping for your 3% category and $500 at grocery stores, for the rest of the quarter you would only get a below average 1% cash back on any other purchases while online shopping or at grocery stores.

Overall, this card is excellent for people whose accounts qualify for the Platinum or Platinum Honors tier of Preferred Rewards, or above average if you want to use the 3% cashback on the niche categories.

How Does the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card Compare to Other Cards?

While the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is an excellent card for Bank of America customers, that doesn't mean this card can't be good for people who don't bank with Bank of America. Below, we provide some comparisons against other popular cashback credit cards.

Our Thoughts on the Chase Freedom Unlimited®

  • On Chase's Secure Website
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Chase Freedom Unlimited®

  • On Chase's Secure Website
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Earn a $150 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.49 - 25.24%.
  • 3% intro balance transfer fee when you transfer a balance during the first 60 days your account is open, with a minimum of $5
  • No annual fee
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.49 - 25.24%.
  • 3% intro balance transfer fee when you transfer a balance during the first 60 days your account is open, with a minimum of $5
  • No annual fee
  • No minimum to redeem for cash back
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
16.49% - 25.24% Variable
Credit Needed
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"There are various types of credit scores. Each creditor uses a variety of different types of credit scores to make lending decisions."}
Excellent
Editor's Rating
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

These cards are very similar in their features, but the better card will largely depend on your spending and which bank/credit cards you use. People who want a hassle-free cash back experience, high balances with Bank of America, or the ability to get high rewards rate on rare categories like Drug Stores or Home Improvement stores are better off using the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card. Those who prefer unlimited cash back on anything or have the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve® would be better off using the Chase Freedom Unlimited®.

If you have high balances on your Bank of America accounts you get a multiplier effect on your cash back rewards rate. On the other hand, if you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve®, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® has a very good rewards rate on any purchase. This is because the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card provides 25% more value when redeeming the points for travel on the Chase portal. Similarly, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® provides 50% more value. However, this means the cash back rewards are only valuable when using them through the Chase portal for travel, limiting how you would like to use your rewards.

Our Thoughts on the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • On Capital One's Secure Website
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Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • On Capital One's Secure Website
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Earn a $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
  • One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 15.74%-25.74% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 15.74%-25.74% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees

Note: The information in this box was provided by Capital One and is not part of our independent analysis.

  • One-time $150 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months; 15.74%-25.74% variable APR after that
  • 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months; 15.74%-25.74% variable APR after that; 3% fee on the amounts transferred within the first 15 months
  • Pay no annual fee or foreign transaction fees
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.74% - 25.74% (Variable)
Credit Needed
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"There are various types of credit scores. Each creditor uses a variety of different types of credit scores to make lending decisions."}
Excellent, Good
Editor's Rating
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

As another unlimited 1.5% cash back card with $0 annual fee, the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card is a standard cash back card and a good alternative to the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card if you don't want to deal with the hassle of tracking which categories you should use the credit card for. Otherwise, the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is better if you spend the time to optimize your spending or have high balances across your Bank of America accounts.

Other features include no foreign transaction fees and an introductory 0% APR for 15 months, which can make this a great card to use when traveling. Most cash back credit cards that don't have an annual fee have foreign transaction fees and a shorter introductory 0% APR period if they even have one.

Our Thoughts on the vs Discover it® Cash Back

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Discover it® Cash Back

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INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • No annual fee.
  • Click "APPLY NOW" to see rates, rewards, FICO® Credit Score terms, Cashback Match™ details & other information.
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • No annual fee.
  • Click "APPLY NOW" to see rates, rewards, FICO® Credit Score terms, Cashback Match™ details & other information.
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
13.49% - 24.49% Variable
Credit Needed
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"There are various types of credit scores. Each creditor uses a variety of different types of credit scores to make lending decisions."}
Excellent/Good
Editor's Rating
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

The Discover it® Cash Back is a rotating category cash back card that provides 5% cashback on up to $1,500 in purchases every quarter (each time you activate) and unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. Although the $1,500 is lower than the $2,500 limit on the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, the higher rewards rate means you still get $75 worth of cash back in a quarter if you manage to spend $1,500 in the category. For 2019, the categories include grocery stores (January-March), gas stations, Uber & Lyft (April-June), restaurants and PayPal (July-September), Amazon.com, Target, and Walmart.com (October-December). This means trading flexibility for a higher rewards rate. The signup bonus is unique for the Discover it® Cash Back—the bonus doubles any cash back you earned at the end of your first year. This makes the bonus potentially very worthwhile and one of the best you can get on a $0-annual fee card.

The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is the better choice if you want the flexibility to choose your category every month. This flexibility may be better for you over the course of the year because the rotating categories chosen for you may not fit your spending habits, resulting in the lack of rewards the card.

Comments and Questions

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). ValuePenguin does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).

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