What is a gas credit card?
A gas credit card is a type of credit card that offers rewards for gas purchases. Some gas credit cards are equally rewarding at all stations, while others give you the best earning rates at one particular chain. Gas rewards typically come in the form of a per-gallon discount, either on every gas purchase or once a certain amount has been spent. But some cards instead offer cash back equal to a certain percentage of your spending.
Furthermore, most gas credit cards belong to one of the four major card networks – Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover – and can be used to make purchases pretty much anywhere. But that’s not always the case. Much like store credit cards, so-called gas cards won’t work anywhere but the station-chain whose name they bear. Such cards are typically aimed at people with fair or bad credit, and they’re known more for convenience and credit building than rewards.
How do I get a gas credit card?
Getting a gas credit card is no different than getting any other type of credit card. You simply need to find a card that suits your credit standing and spending habits, and then submit an application. There are a few unique considerations, though. You’ll need to decide whether you want a gas credit card tied to a particular gas-station chain or one with any-station rewards. You’ll also need to determine whether to use your gas credit card for all of your everyday expenses or just gas. These choices will lead you to the right card for your needs.
How do you save money on gas?
Aside from getting a more fuel-efficient vehicle and using apps such as GasBuddy to find the lowest prices in your area, getting a gas rewards credit card is one of the best ways to save money on gas. After all, the right gas credit card can save you around 5% on every fill-up.
You can also save money on gas by carpooling, making sure your tire pressure is correct, avoiding excessive braking and acceleration, and even shopping at certain grocery stores. The likes of Giant, Kroger, and Safeway, for example, offer discounts at affiliated gas station chains (e.g. Shell and ExxonMobil) based on how much you spend at their stores. This is especially powerful when combined with the respective station’s co-branded credit cards, many of which offer pretty good rewards but didn’t make WalletHub's best list because you have to spend a relatively high amount per month in order to get a decent return.
Can you use a credit card to get cash back?
You cannot use a credit card to get cash back at the register like you could with a debit card. And while you can use a credit card to get cash from an ATM, this type of transaction – called a cash advance – is very expensive. You will have to pay a fee, and interest will immediately begin to accrue at a high rate.
The best way to use a credit card to get cash back is by earning rewards on the purchases that you make. The average cash rewards card offers 1.02% back on all purchases, according to WalletHub’s latest Credit Card Landscape Report. And the best cash offers give you far more, from 2% back on all purchases to 5% bonus rates on gas and other common expenses.
You can check out the market’s best cash back credit cards, selected by WalletHub’s editors from 1,000+ offers, here: https://wallethub.com/best-cash-back-credit-card/