4 best credit cards for retirees

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The credit card industry is so competitive that you can find a card that meets almost any need. Ultimately, this benefits all consumers, but it can be especially helpful for retirees.

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Many seniors live on a fixed income, and the benefits they can get from a credit card can help ease the cash crunch, especially in times of rising inflation. Others have lots of travel built into their retirement plans, and using a rewards credit card can ease some of the burden of getting from place to place.

With these considerations in mind, here is a list of some of the best credit cards for retirees.

The Blue Cash Preferred® card from American Express can be a great option for retirees because it offers significant extra cash back for spending in categories seniors typically use. Specifically, the card offers a whopping 6% cash back at US supermarkets (up to $6,000 a year in purchases, then 1%) and on streaming subscriptions in the US, and 3% cash back on US gas stations and public transportation, including rideshares and parking. .

With a , the card also offers a $250 statement credit after spending $3,000 in the first six months of card ownership, plus an introductory rate of 0% on purchases and balance transfers during the first 12 months. After the introductory period, the APR will apply.

While this card doesn’t offer great travel perks like lounge access, free baggage, or elite status, it does offer huge amounts of cash back for retirees who prefer to stay home more. or take road trips instead of flying. At a 6% cash pay rate on groceries and streaming, retirees only need to spend about $132 per month in these categories to offset annual fees.

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Retirees who don’t like paying annual fees on a credit card can get many of the same benefits of the Blue Cash Preferred® card by purchasing the no-fee Blue Cash Everyday® card from American Express. While the perks aren’t as high as the $95 annual fee version, the cash back amounts are extremely high for a no-fee card.

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The Blue Cash Everyday® card offers a fairly generous 3% cash back on purchases at US supermarkets, US gas stations and US online retail purchases (up to $6,000 per year of purchases in each of these categories, then 1%), in addition to a monthly credit of $7 for the Disney pack and a monthly credit of $15 for Home Chef. A $200 sign-up bonus is available for those who spend $2,000 within the first six months of card membership.

As with its beefier brethren, the bonus categories with the Blue Cash Everyday® card cater to those often used by retirees, making it an attractive option.

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Barclays® AARP® Essential Rewards Mastercard

The Barclays® AARP® Essential Rewards Mastercard doesn’t offer travel rewards or huge perks, but it focuses its value on spending categories like those used by retirees. Specifically, the card offers unlimited 3% cash back on gas and drugstore purchases, as well as 2% back on eligible medical expenses.

While cash back on gas purchases is a fairly common rewards feature, it’s harder to find a credit card that gives extra cash back for drugstore and medical purchases, making Barclays® AARP® Essential Rewards Mastercard a good choice for some seniors. Best of all, the card has no annual fee, making its rewards essentially free.

New card members also earn a $200 cash back bonus after spending just $500 on the card in the first three months and can enjoy a promotional rate of 0% over 15 months on transfers. balance made within 45 days of account opening. [33]

For retirees who are a bit more on the go, the Capital One Venture X Card offers a host of valuable travel-related features and benefits. The map bears a stiff annual fee, but it also offers rebates of $300 per year on trips booked through the Capital One Travel portal. Additionally, the card offers 10,000 bonus points on each card anniversary, which can be redeemed for $100 in travel. Combined, these two awards alone more than offset the annual fee.

New cardholders can earn a sign-up bonus of 75,000 points by spending $4,000 in the first three months of card ownership, and they’re also eligible for a free Priority Pass membership, allowing access to fairs around the world. Access to the Capital One lounge is also included. In addition to these main rewards, the card pays 10x points on car rentals and hotels and 5x points on flights booked through the Capital One Travel portal. Individuals who register or renew Global Entry or TSA PreCheck are eligible for a $100 credit once every four years.

Overall, the card can offer great value for retirees who like to travel.

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All American Express card offer information has been independently collected by GOBankingRates and has not been reviewed or endorsed by American Express. These offers are not available through GOBankingRates.