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Whether you’re planning a road trip, easing back into a work commuting routine, or simply doing a lot of day-to-day driving, earning credit card rewards for gas purchases can take some of the sting out of this necessary expense.
Fortunately, there are lots of rewards credit cards that include gas stations as a bonus category. The very best of these also earn extra points, miles, or cash back in other popular categories, like travel or dining.
Choosing the best gas credit card for you boils down to the types of rewards you like to earn and your overall spending habits. Here are our top credit card picks to make the most of your spending at the pump.
The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi offers 4% cash back on eligible gas purchases worldwide (not just at Costco gas stations) on up to $7,000 in purchases per year (then 1%). Plus, you’ll earn 3% back on restaurant and eligible travel purchases worldwide, 2% back on all other purchases from Costco and costco.com, and 1% back on everything else.
There’s no annual fee, but you need a Costco membership to earn rewards. While gas station earning on the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi is excellent, the card doesn’t issue cash-back the same way other cards do. You’ll only receive your rewards once per year, in the form of a certificate you can redeem for cash back or merchandise at Costco.
$95, waived for the first year
15.99% to 23.99% variable APR
The new U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card has a great 4x earning rate at gas stations and on travel, and it’s not capped like on some other cards. Cardholders also earn 2x points at grocery stores and on grocery delivery, dining, and streaming services, and 1 point per dollar on everything else.
Each point is worth 1 cent toward cash back, travel, gift cards, or merchandise, so the U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card effectively earns 4% back at gas stations. The annual fee is $95, waived for the first year, and you’ll get other perks like a Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit, streaming credits, cell phone protection, and Visa Signature benefits.
15.99% – 23.99% Variable
Good to Excellent
60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first three months of account opening
The Citi Premier® Card is a terrific all-around pick if you like earning flexible Citi ThankYou points and spend a lot in popular everyday categories. You’ll earn 3x points at gas stations, restaurants, supermarkets, hotels, and on air travel, and 1 point per dollar on everything else.
New cardholders can earn a welcome bonus of 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first three months of account opening, and you can use points for travel through the Citi ThankYou portal, transfer them to airline partners, or redeem them for gift cards, merchandise, cash back, and more.
14.99%–23.74% variable APR
Good to Excellent
$200 after spending $500 in the first three months from account opening
The Chase Freedom Unlimited® is marketed like a cash-back card, but it actually earns valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards points. You’ll earn 1.5% back (1.5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar) on most purchases, including at gas stations — plus 5% back (5x) on travel booked through Chase and 3% back (3x) on dining and at drugstores.
If you’re willing to keep track of rotating bonus categories, it’s worth looking at the Chase Freedom Unlimited®‘s sibling, the Chase Freedom Flex℠. With the Chase Freedom Flex℠, you can earn 5% cash back (5x points) in rotating categories on up to $1,500 in combined purchases each quarter when you activate (then 1% back). Gas stations make a frequent appearance on the Chase Freedom 5x calendar, including April through June 2021.
12.99% to 22.99% Variable
If you prefer transferable Amex Membership Rewards points, the Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card is a good option, especially if you make a lot of purchases overall each month.
The card earns 2x points at US gas stations and 3x points at US supermarkets (on up to $6,000 in purchases per year, then 1%), but if you make 30 or more purchases in a billing cycle, you’ll receive 50% more points on purchases that period. Effectively, if you reach the purchase threshold, you could earn 3x points when you fuel up.
$95 (waived the first year)
13.99% to 23.99% variable APR
20% back on Amazon.com purchases (up to $200 back) in your first 6 months of Card Membership, plus $150 back as a statement credit after you spend $3,000 on the Card within the first 6 months
0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months from account opening
The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is a great card for those who spend a lot on gas, groceries, and commuting. Right now, it’s offering a great welcome bonus too — 20% back on Amazon.com purchases (up to $200 back) in your first 6 months of Card Membership, plus $150 back as a statement credit after you spend $3,000 on the Card within the first 6 months.
Read more: The best cash-back credit cards of 2021
It earns 3% cash back at US gas stations and on transit (including taxis, rideshares, parking, tolls, trains, and buses), 6% cash back on select US streaming services, 6% back on the first $6,000 spent at U.S. supermarkets each year, then 1%, and 1% back on all other eligible purchases (cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars).
Good to Excellent
70,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of card membership
If you qualify for a small-business credit card and spend a lot on gas, the American Express® Business Gold Card could earn you a lot of Membership Rewards points. It’s got a unique earning structure — cardholders earn 4x points on the two categories where their business spends the most each billing cycle, up to $150,000 per calendar year (then 1x), and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.
The list includes:
- Airfare purchased directly from airlines
- U.S. gas stations
- U.S. restaurants (including takeout and delivery)
- U.S. shipping providers
- U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud systems from select technology providers
- U.S. purchases for advertising in select media (online, TV, radio)
13.49% to 17.99%
To qualify for the PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature® Card, you’ll need to be a member of the PenFed (Pentagon Federal) Credit Union. You don’t need a military affiliation to join — all that’s required is that you fund a savings account with a minimum of $5 — and you can do so when you apply for the card.
The PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature® Card earns a whopping 5x points on gas purchases at the pump, 3x points on groceries, and 1 point per dollar on everything else with no caps. Keep in mind redeeming rewards isn’t straightforward — the value of your points varies depending on what you use them for (travel, gift cards, or merchandise) and there’s no option to use points for cash back.
13.99% – 23.99% variable
0% for 15 billing cycles
If your spending habits change from time to time, having a card that allows you to customize your bonus categories can be a real plus. The Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Credit Card gives you the option to choose one 3% bonus category each month, from a list:
- Online shopping
- Drug stores
- Home improvement/furnishings
Along with earning 3% back in the category you choose, you’ll also earn 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, up to a combined maximum of $2,500 in spending each quarter between the 3% and 2% categories (then you’ll earn 1%).
If you’re a Bank of America Preferred Rewards customer, the card gets even more compelling. Depending on how much you have on deposit with Bank of America and/or Merrill, you could earn 25% to 75% more rewards — so, at the top tier, you could earn 5.25% back on gas purchases instead of 3%.
Jasmin Baron is an associate editor at Personal Finance Insider, where she helps readers maximize rewards and find the best credit cards to fit their lifestyles. She has covered credit cards, points and miles, and loyalty programs for over seven years, and she’s a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF).