Some cards have clauses that can make you lose out on points or cash back. Take the Discover card. It gives 1 percent cash back, but that drops down to 0.25 percent at warehouse or discount stores such as Walmart.
The Chase Freedom card can be good because it offers 5 percent cash back in certain seasonal categories. But because those categories change every quarter, you have to opt in every time, which can be a hassle.
Consumer Reports Money Adviser says one of the best cash-back reward cards is the American Express Blue Cash. It doesn't charge an annual fee, and after spending $6,500 within a year, it offers 5 percent cash back at supermarkets, drugstores, and gas stations, and 1.25 percent elsewhere.
Retailers are offering rewards cards, too, and if you're a loyal customer, they can pay off. Consumer Reports says a good one is the Amazon.com Rewards Visa card. It has no annual fee, pays $30 back on your first purchase, and points are unlimited and never expire.
Because terms and conditions of rewards cards change frequently, be sure to routinely check for updated terms.
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