Rewards credit cards can be lucrative, both in terms of ongoing rewards and generous sign-up bonuses. Unfortunately, the best credit cards on the market are only available to consumers with very good or excellent credit, which typically means a FICO score of 740 or higher.
But you can get a rewards credit card if you have bad credit. You just need to adjust your expectations and be prepared to consider a wide range of cards. Specifically, you may find that most bad credit reward credit cards are for specific purchases, such as gasoline.
What is a gas card?
Gasoline credit cards can help you rack up rewards when you fill up your tank, but you can also use them to build your credit score so you can qualify for a better rewards credit card later. Most gasoline credit cards offer rewards as a percentage of your spending, just like any other cash back credit card, although bad credit credit cards tend to have less lucrative and more rewarding rewards programs. costs.
Keep in mind that when we are talking about bad credit gas cards, there are two main types to consider.
- Closed Loop Gas Cards are only valid for gasoline and other purchases with specific brands, such as Shell or Chevron. One thing to consider when comparing cards is the fact that gas-only, closed-loop credit cards tend to carry incredibly high interest rates. Take the ExxonMobil smart card, for example. This card will reimburse you 30 cents for every gallon of gasoline you buy for two months, then 6 cents per gallon. However, you will pay a variable APR of 26.49% on purchases if you maintain a balance.
- Traditional credit cards with rewards for gasoline allow consumers to earn rewards on gasoline and other types of purchases. These cards tend to be more useful because you are not limited in terms of which gas stations you can refuel at and since you can use them for all your purchases, not just gasoline.
How do gas cards work?
Gasoline credit cards are easy to apply online, although credit requirements may vary depending on the type of gas card you are considering. The best gasoline credit cards that allow you to earn rewards are generally aimed at consumers with good or excellent credit, while consumers with fair credit (580 to 669) or poor credit (579 or less) may only be eligible for rewards credit cards. for bad credit or a store brand gas card.
Some gas cards allow you to earn points or cash back for every dollar you spend on gasoline and other purchases, but closed-loop gas cards that only work with a specific brand of gasoline may offer a rebate for every gallon of gasoline you buy instead.
Ultimately, the benefits of getting a gas card depend largely on the card you’re approved for and their specific rewards program. Remember, like all credit cards, gas cards charge interest when you keep a balance, so you’ll have to pay your gas card bill in full each month you use it.
Build credit with a gas card
Building credit with a gas card is a smart move, as it would be with any other type of credit card. Whether you use a closed-loop card or a bad credit rewards credit card, all of your credit movements and payments will be reported to one or all of the three credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
To get the most out of your gas card, you’ll want to use it for gasoline and other purchases that you can pay for right away. Try not to have a balance as your interest rate is likely to be high, and avoid accumulating debts that you cannot afford to pay off.
Advantages of mortgage loan with a gas card
- Some gas cards are fairly easy to obtain, either because they are gas-only credit cards or because they are regular rewards cards for consumers with low credit.
- Gas cards are the responsibility of all three credit bureaus, which can help you increase your credit over time.
- Gas cards can help you earn rewards or discounts when you refuel.
Disadvantages of building credit with a gas card
- Bad credit gas cards may offer only average rewards.
- You may have to pay an annual fee, and many gas cards have a high APR.
- Some bad credit gas cards are secured credit cards, which means you need to put down a cash deposit as security.
Best gas cards for bad credit
When it comes to gas cards for bad credit, there are several options to consider. The following list of credit cards includes the best bad credit gas cards on the market today.
Discover itÂ® Secure Credit Card: Best Secure Card for Gas Rewards
Because it is a secured credit card, the Discover it Secured Credit Card is one of the easiest gas cards to approve. You’ll need to put down a cash deposit as security to get started, but this card will report your credit payments to all three credit bureaus, helping you build your credit over time.
- 2% cashback on the first $ 1,000 you spend at gas stations and restaurants each quarter (then 1%) plus 1% cashback on all other purchases
- Discover will provide dollar-for-dollar matching of any cash back rewards you earn at the end of your first year.
- No annual fee
Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best Gas Card for Students
The Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards credit card is recommended for students and others with “fair to good” credit, which typically means anyone with a FICO score between 580 and 740.
- 1.5% cash back on all your purchases
- Capital One will automatically consider increasing your limit after six months and six on-time credit card payments.
- No annual fee
Credit One BankÂ® Platinum VisaÂ® for credit rebuilding: the best for construction credit
Credit One Bank’s Visa Platinum Credit Rebuilding Card is for consumers with low credit, so it’s by far one of the easiest gas cards to get. Note that the annual fee is $ 75 the first year, then $ 99 thereafter ($ 8.25 per month).
- 1% Cash Back Rewards on qualifying gas and grocery purchases, and on mobile phone, Internet, cable and satellite TV services (conditions apply)
- Choose the due date for your credit card payment.
Shell | Fuel RewardsÂ® Card: Ideal for easy approvals
If you are looking for an easy to approve gas card, you should consider the Shell | Fuel Reward Card.
- Save at least 5 cents per gallon of gasoline with Automatic Gold status in the Shell Fuel Rewards program (up to 20 gallons).
- Combine your automatic savings with additional discounts you get by purchasing from select merchants.
- No annual fee
Chevron / Texaco Techron Advantage Card: Ideal for big discounts on gasoline
This gas-only credit card is another easy-to-approve gas card that can work well for consumers looking for a Chevron gas card for bad credit.
- Earn 30 cents per gallon in fuel credits at Chevron and Texaco stations for the first 90 days after you open your account.
- Earn 3 cents per gallon on every fill-up year round (on regular or diesel fuel), 5 cents per gallon on Plus fuel, or 7 cents per gallon on Supreme / Premium fuel. (The higher prices on Plus and Supreme fuels end September 30, 2021.)
- No annual fee
Are gas cards worth it?
Consumers looking for a way to build credit should definitely look to gasoline credit cards, whether guaranteed or not. Gas cards can help you build credit as you learn positive credit habits, and you can even earn rewards or fuel discounts along the way.
Just make sure that you are comparing gas cards for bad credit in terms of fees and rewards, and that you only apply for a branded gas card if you refuel with that brand frequently.
Still worried about being approved for a card? Try entering basic information, including your name, address and the last four digits of your social security number, into CardMatch â¢, Bankrate’s prequalification tool. There is no impact on your credit score and you will be matched with cards that match your credit profile. This is not a guarantee that you will be approved for the card, but it is the best way to see which cards you are likely to qualify for.
Information on the ExxonMobil Smart Card, Chevron / Texaco Techron Advantage Card, and Shell | Fuel RewardsÂ® Card was collected independently by Bankrate.com. Card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.