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Amex vs. Chase cash-back: Which is best?

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People turn to cash-back cards for simple rewards that can maximize — and sometimes even offset — their everyday spending. Both American Express and Chase offer an impressive lineup of cash-back credit cards loaded with perks. However, they’re very different and provide unique benefits that make choosing “the best” challenging. Today, we’ll take a deep dive into Amex and Chase cash cards and see how they stack up against each other.

American Express Cash-Back Cards

Key Cards and Benefits

  1. American Express Cash Magnet® Card
    • Best for Amex beginners
    • Welcome Offer: $200 statement credit after you spend $2,000 in the first six months.
    • Earning Rates: 1.5% cash back on all purchases.
  2. Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
    • Best for maximizing cash back
    • Welcome Offer: $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in the first six months.
    • Earning Rates:
      • 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 per year, then 1%).
      • 6% on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
      • 3% on transit and at U.S. gas stations.
      • 1% on other purchases.
  3. Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
    • Best for cash back beginners
    • Welcome Offer: $200 statement credit after you spend $2,000 in the first six months.
    • Earning Rates:
      • 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. online retail purchases, and U.S. gas stations (up to $6,000 per category per year, then 1%).
      • 1% on other purchases.
  4. American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
    • Best for flat-rate rewards
    • Welcome Offer: $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in the first three months.
    • Earning Rates: 2% cash back on all eligible purchases up to $50,000 per year, then 1%.

Chase Cash-Back Cards

Key Cards and Benefits

  1. Chase Freedom Unlimited®
    • Best for personal flat-rate rewards
    • Welcome Offer: Additional 1.5% cash back on everything (up to $20,000 spent in the first year).
    • Earning Rates:
      • 5% on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠.
      • 3% on dining and drugstore purchases.
      • 1.5% on all other purchases.
  2. Chase Freedom Flex℠
    • Best for comprehensive category bonuses
    • Welcome Offer: $200 bonus after you spend $500 in the first three months.
    • Earning Rates:
      • 5% on up to $1,500 on combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter.
      • 5% on travel purchased through Chase Travel.
      • 3% on dining and drugstore purchases.
      • 1% on all other purchases.
  3. Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
    • Best for small business spending
    • Welcome Offer: $750 cash back after you spend $6,000 in the first three months.
    • Earning Rates:
      • 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent at office supply stores, on internet, cable, and phone services.
      • 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent at gas stations and restaurants.
      • 1% on other purchases.
  4. Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card
    • Best for flat-rate rewards for those spending over $50,000
    • Welcome Offer: $750 cash back after you spend $6,000 in the first three months.
    • Earning Rates: 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

Comparing Amex vs. Chase Cash-Back Personal Cards

Welcome Offers:

  • Amex Cash Magnet: $200 statement credit after $2,000 in six months.
  • Blue Cash Preferred: $250 statement credit after $3,000 in six months.
  • Blue Cash Everyday: $200 statement credit after $2,000 in six months.
  • Chase Freedom Unlimited: Additional 1.5% cash back on everything (up to $20,000 in the first year).
  • Chase Freedom Flex: $200 bonus after $500 in three months.

Bonus Categories:

  • Amex Blue Cash Preferred:
    • 6% on U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 per year, then 1%).
    • 6% on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
    • 3% on transit and U.S. gas stations.
  • Amex Blue Cash Everyday:
    • 3% on U.S. supermarkets, online retail, and gas stations (up to $6,000 per category per year, then 1%).
  • Chase Freedom Unlimited:
    • 5% on travel through Chase Travel.
    • 3% on dining and drugstore purchases.
    • 1.5% on all other purchases.
  • Chase Freedom Flex:
    • 5% on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter.
    • 5% on travel through Chase Travel.
    • 3% on dining and drugstore purchases.
    • 1% on all other purchases.

Comparing Amex and Chase Cash-Back Business Cards

Welcome Offers:

  • Amex Blue Business Cash: $250 statement credit after $3,000 in three months.
  • Ink Business Cash: $750 cash back after $6,000 in three months.
  • Ink Business Unlimited: $750 cash back after $6,000 in three months.

Bonus Categories:

  • Amex Blue Business Cash: 2% cash back on all eligible purchases up to $50,000 per year, then 1%.
  • Ink Business Cash:
    • 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent at office supply stores, on internet, cable, and phone services.
    • 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent at gas stations and restaurants.
    • 1% on other purchases.
  • Ink Business Unlimited: 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

Which Amex or Chase Cash-Back Card is Best for Personal Cards?

The best Amex or Chase card for personal use depends on how you utilize the card’s bonus categories and benefits. Welcome offers are a key consideration, as they provide an opportunity to earn significant cash back from the start.

Final Thoughts

Choosing between Amex and Chase cash-back cards ultimately depends on your spending habits and preferences. If you prefer high cash-back rates on specific categories like groceries or streaming services, Amex Blue Cash Preferred might be your best bet. However, if you value flexible earning rates and comprehensive category bonuses, Chase Freedom Unlimited and Chase Freedom Flex offer substantial advantages. Assess your spending patterns to determine which card aligns best with your financial goals.

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