There are a lot of reasons why you might not be working on a credit card sign up bonus right now. Maybe you’re trying to get below 5/24, or you’re letting your credit report cool off a little bit before opening some new cards.

Whatever the reason, if you’re not working on a sign-up bonus, you should still try to take advantage of credit card bonus categories. That’s why we’ve decided to compile the best bonus category options on a monthly basis.

While some cards have permanent bonus categories, others change from time to time which has been especially true this year. We hope this guide will make choosing the best card to make a purchase just a little bit easier for you.

Speaking of making things a little easier for you, we put together a master “cheat sheet” that has the best credit cards per spending category for you. You can download it by clicking here on the button below.

In This Article

 

Groceries

For August 2020, there are quite a few options to earn increased points on groceries. Many issuers are offering increased bonuses on grocery purchases as many people are staying at home rather than traveling.

The best cards offering bonus points on grocery purchases are below.

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve – 5X Ultimate Rewards points on Instacart (up to $3,000)
  • American Express Gold Card – 4X Membership Rewards at US Supermarkets up to $25,000 spend per year, 1x thereafter
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred Card – 3x Ultimate Rewards points on Instacart (up to $3,000)
  • Citi Premier Card – 3X ThankYou Points at Supermarkets starting August 23rd

The Chase Sapphire Reserve and Chase Sapphire Preferred are also offering up to $50 in statement credits toward an Instacart Express membership (yearly or monthly).

Chase Sapphire Reserve

50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

American Express Gold Card

10xT Thoughts: A great card for category spenders who want more rewards for their spend! Currently offering 35,000 points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months.

Learn more

Flights

Traveling may be the farthest thing on your mind right now, but if you are planning to fly anywhere soon you should be sure to earn the most points possible on any cash tickets you’re purchasing.

The best cards offering bonus points for flights in August 2020 are below.

Although both the Amex Platinum and the Citi Prestige Card earn 5X points on flights, the Amex Platinum because it provides trip delay insurance.

The Platinum Card from American Express

Earn 60,000 points after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.

Learn more

Chase Sapphire Reserve

50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

Hotels

While there are exceptions, you’ll want to focus on earning transferable points when booking hotels in most cases. Here are your best options with Amex, Chase, and Citi:

Chase Sapphire Reserve

50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

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Chase Ink Business Preferred SM Credit Card

100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $15,000 in 3 months

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Another option to earn 5X points is the U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Card. You’ll earn 5X points on hotels booked through the Altitude Reserve Center with your card, but there are no transfer partners with U.S. Bank.

If you’re staying at a chain hotel, you may get some bigger benefits booking with the hotel’s co-branded credit card. The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card will earn 14X Hilton points at Hilton properties while the World of Hyatt Credit Card will earn 4X Hyatt points at Hyatt properties.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

Earn 150,000 Hilton points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months.

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The World of Hyatt Credit Card

25,000 points after $3k spend in 3 months, another 25k points after $6k total spend in 6 months

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Cruises

For cruisers, you’ll want to book using a card that earns point bonuses on cruises. Co-branded cruise cards aren’t typically the best options. Instead, use a card that earns a flexible currency.

American Express Green Card

30,000 Membership Rewards Points after you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months

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Chase Sapphire Reserve

50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

Rental Cars

When renting a car, you should consider more than just the total amount of points you’re getting. Some cards offer rental car insurance when you book with them, but they may not offer the most points.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

American Express Green Card

30,000 Membership Rewards Points after you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months

Learn more

Restaurants

Dining is a very popular bonus category across many cards. When there’s a competitive bonus category, the bonus points available can be pretty high.

Rideshare

Rideshares can be tricky. Some banks consider rideshares as travel while others don’t. Other cards have bonuses for specific rideshare companies.

Food Delivery

For food delivery, some cards offer unique credits in addition to bonus points. Balancing your earnings and credits to offset the costs is the best way to save and earn.

  • Citi Prestige Card – 5X ThankYou Points on DoorDash, Grubhub, Uber Eats
  • American Express Gold Card – 4X Membership Rewards on all food delivery services
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve – 3X Ultimate Rewards points
  • Capital One Savor Card – 4% cashback on food delivery services.

In addition to the points, the Citi Prestige gets $5 back on all Postmates orders over $25. Meanwhile, the Amex Gold Card has an up to $10 per month credit that you can use with Grubhub and Seamless. The Sapphire Reserve currently provides a DoorDash DashPass membership which includes free delivery from participating restaurants

Mobile Pay

Mobile pay is becoming increasingly popular every day, especially as we want to reduce contact as much as possible. As the popularity of mobile pay services increases, so does its popularity as a bonus category.

  • U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve – 3X on Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, LG Pay
  • Apple Card – 3% on Apple Pay transactions at Uber, UberEats, T-Mobile, Exxon, Mobil, Nike, Walgreens, and 2% back on all other Apple Pay transactions
  • Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card – 1.8% cashback on mobile payments for the first year with your card

Although the Apple Card and Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card are technically two of best options for mobile pay, we don’t generally recommend them. Many cards will earn bonus points on their respective categories even if you pay with mobile pay. So if you’re dining out, look to use the best restaurant card instead of an Apple Card or the Cash Wise Visa.

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa

$150 after $500 spend in the first 3 months

Learn more

Gas Stations

You might not be commuting as much right now if you’re working from home, but you should still try to get as many points possible when filling up the tank.

  • Chase Sapphire Reserve – 5X Ultimate Rewards points (up to $1,500)
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred – 3x Ultimate Rewards points (up to $1,500)
  • Citi Premier Card – 3X ThankYou Points
  • Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card – 3X points
  • Blue Cash Preferred Credit Card from American Express – 3% cashback

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

$250 statement credit after $1,000 spend in the first 3 months

Learn more

Entertainment

Entertainment can be a broad category, but there are a few cards available this month that specify all entertainment as a bonus category.

  • Citi Premier Card – 2X ThankYou points until August 22nd
  • Capital One Savor Rewards Card – 4% cashback, 8% on Vivid Seats
  • Capital One SavorOne Rewards Card – 3% cashback

Streaming Services

For many people, streaming services have replaced traditional cable and satellite TV. Although it may be a hassle to change all your billing information, using one of the following cards will get you the most back on streaming services this month.

Although it isn’t a bonus category, The Platinum Card from American Express currently offers $20 per month in streaming credits through the end of 2020. You’ll only earn one point per dollar spent, but you’ll be able to save on many of your favorite streaming services.

Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card

20,000 bonus points after $1,000 spend in 3 months

Learn more

The Platinum Card from American Express

Earn 60,000 points after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.

Learn more

Quarterly Bonus Categories (July-September)

Some of our favorite cards include bonus categories that change quarterly. Below are two of our favorite cards and their quarterly bonuses for July through September.

  • Chase Freedom – 5%/5X at Amazon and Whole Foods (up to $1,500
  • Discover It Cash Back Credit Card – 5% at restaurants and PayPal (up to $1,500)

Chase Freedom

$200 cash bonus after $500 spend in 3 months

Learn more by visiting our
credit cards page.

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot of great cards out there for every bonus category this month. Missing a category you’d like to see included in the future? Let us know in the comments and we’ll be sure to include it next month.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

New to the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card to start with. With a bonus of 80,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months and 2x points on dining and travel, this card truly cannot be beat! 

Learn more

10xTravel is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as CreditCards.com. This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers.

Editors Note: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.


About the Author

Travis became addicted to travel after his first international trip to Nicaragua in 2016. He wanted to travel more but didn’t want to pay for it. He found points and miles, and hasn’t paid cash for a trip since. A self-proclaimed adventurer and beach-bum, Travis is often found at remote island destinations and beaches with scuba gear in tow. If you don’t spot him on a beach, look for somewhere with good wine or a...

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