The best credit cards for good credit provide plenty of opportunities to take advantage of valuable benefits and rewards while continuing to build your credit. These rewards cards range from travel cards to cashback cards.
If you have good credit and you’re interested in applying for a new credit card, here are some terrific options for you to choose from. You can use this guide to compare credit cards and pick the one that rewards you the most.
The best credit cards for good credit
- Best for travelers: Chase Sapphire Preferred
- Best for airline rewards: Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card
- Best for hotel rewards: World of Hyatt Credit Card
- Best for grocery rewards: Chase Freedom Unlimited
- Best for streaming services rewards: Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express
- Best for restaurant rewards: Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
The best credit cards for good credit for October 2020
|Card name||Best for||Why it’s special|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred||Travel||Generous 80,000-point sign-up bonus; travel rewards; travel partners; travel insurance|
|Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card||Flights||Generous 40,000-point sign-up bonus; travel rewards; $75 annual Southwest credit; 7,500 Southwest anniversary points each year; Four free upgraded boardings each year|
|World of Hyatt Credit Card||Hotels||Generous 50,000-point sign-up bonus; travel rewards; automatic Discoverist status; free anniversary night each year|
|Chase Freedom Unlimited||Groceries||Generous $200 cash back sign-up bonus; earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (on up to $12,000 in spending in the first year)|
|Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express||Streaming services||Generous $300 cash back welcome bonus; earn 6% cash back on U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year) and select U.S. streaming services|
|Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card||Restaurants||Generous $300 cash back early spend bonus; earn 4% cash back on dining and entertainment|
Chase Sapphire Preferred: Best for travelers
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card for travelers who want access to the valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards program, but don’t want to pay a high annual fee. With a $95 annual fee, the rewards potential of earning 5X on Lyft rides, 2X points on eligible dining and travel, and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases can easily offset the low annual cost. Not to mention the bonus categories make it easy to earn rewards on your travel purchases.
If you factor in the 80,000-point sign-up bonus after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months after account opening, plus your points being worth 25% more when you redeem them for travel through the Chase portal, you’ve got an excellent travel credit card. Chase points are also very flexible, so it’s easy to redeem them for airfare and hotel stays or transfer them to more than 12 Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer partners, like JetBlue or Southwest Airlines.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card also offers complimentary insurance coverage, such as trip delay reimbursement, baggage delay insurance, trip cancellation insurance, trip interruption insurance, and rental car insurance.
Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card: Best for airline rewards
If you’re looking for a way to fly for free using airline rewards, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card has you covered. Cardholders earn 2X points with Southwest and on Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partner purchases and 1X points on all other purchases.
Even better, you can get a 40,000-point sign-up bonus after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months. Each year, you’ll also receive up to $75 of Southwest travel credit and 7,500 Rapid Rewards points.
It’s easy to fly Southwest with points when earning rewards is so simple. Plus, the destinations aren’t bad either. Southwest offers flights all over the U.S., Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. And unlike many other airlines, Southwest offers two free checked bags per passenger on every Southwest flight.
World of Hyatt Credit Card: Best for hotel rewards
The World of Hyatt Credit Card offers quality benefits and provides multiple opportunities to stay at hotels for free. For rewards, you can earn 9X points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels; 2X points per $1 spent on eligible travel, dining, and health purchases; and 1 point per $1 spent on everything else.
New cardholders can also earn 50,000 points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months. With combined points earning potential and the free anniversary night each year, you can stay numerous nights at your choice of hundreds of Hyatt locations around the world.
This card also gets you automatic Discoverist status in the World of Hyatt loyalty program. This provides perks such as room upgrades, late checkout, bonus points, and more. In addition, it also sets you up to more quickly earn higher Hyatt statuses, like Explorist and Globalist, which come with loads more benefits.
Chase Freedom Unlimited: Best for grocery rewards
The Chase Freedom Unlimited has an amazing offer for new cardholders if you spend a lot on groceries: earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (on up to $12,000 in spending in the first year). Other than groceries, it’s 5% on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% on dining and drugstore purchases, and 1.5% on all other purchases. Unlike its sibling card, the Chase Freedom, the Unlimited does not require you to keep track of rotating categories so you can easily earn cash back on your everyday purchases.
Also, if you spend $500 in the first 3 months, you’ll earn the $200 sign-up bonus. Couple that with the heaps of cash back you’re sure to earn from buying groceries and you’ll be putting plenty of money back in your pocket in no time. Being a $0 fee card, the provided value on the Freedom Unlimited is hard to beat.
Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express: Best for streaming services rewards
With the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express, streaming services like Disney+, Hulu, and Netflix have never been more rewarding. Cardmembers earn 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (for first $6,000 per year) and on U.S. streaming services, 3% at U.S. gas stations and on eligible transit, and 1% on other purchases.
Because the Blue Cash Preferred provides cash back on a variety of common expenses, it’s easy to rack up your rewards. And with the $300 welcome offer, the $95 (waived first year) annual fee won’t have to stress you out. If you use your card frequently, your combined everyday earnings and the $300 welcome bonus provide more than enough value to offset the annual cost.
Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for restaurant rewards
For terrific rewards earning potential at restaurants, the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card is a great option. There is a $95 annual fee, but you earn 8% cash back on tickets purchased through Vivid Seats (through January 2022), 4% unlimited cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores (excludes superstores like Walmart and Target), and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
If you like to dine out, you can earn enough cashback rewards to offset the annual fee while doing something you enjoy. Complimentary card benefits like extended warranty coverage and travel accident insurance also provide a lot of value when you need it.
And with the early spend bonus of $300 after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months, you’re already on your way to building your cashback levels.
How we chose these cards
If you have good credit, there are loads of credit card products available for you to check out from most credit card issuers. Having a good mix of cards was one of our main priorities when creating this list of the best credit cards for good credit.
Each individual is different and has varying financial needs, so the best credit card for one person may not be the best for another. With that in mind, we found credit cards that require good credit, but also stand out in their particular categories for the benefits and rewards they offer. For example, we chose travel rewards cards with no foreign transaction fee, but also cashback cards with good rewards rates on everyday purchases.
Each of the cards we picked offers excellent benefits in their category, whether it’s travel, groceries, gas, and/or restaurants. Overall, there should be at least one card listed that can suit the specific needs of just about anyone with good credit.
What is a good credit score?
FICO and VantageScore provide the credit score models most recognized by lenders around the country. Their models provide credit score ranges from 300 to 850, with 300 being the lowest and 850 the highest. On the FICO model, a good credit score falls between 670 and 739. On the VantageScore model, a good credit score is between 661 and 780.
As you can see, good credit scores are ranked fairly high on both models, well away from the lowest 300 score, which falls under bad credit. If you have a good credit score, you’ve likely met many of the criteria that the major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) take into account when calculating your score.
Here are the common factors that affect your credit score:
- Late payments: Late and missed payments account for a large portion of your credit score. Simply opening a credit account, using it, and never having a late or missed payment will have positive effects on your credit.
- Credit utilization: Lenders want you to use your borrowed credit, but they don’t want you to use up your entire credit limit all the time. If you consistently utilize 30% or less of your available credit, your credit score is likely to increase.
- Credit history: The longer you’ve had open credit accounts in good standing, the better your credit score will be. Lenders want to see a reasonable history of credit before they offer you more.
- Credit mix: Having any type of credit account can help your credit score, but if you have different types of credit, you’re likely to increase your credit score. Credit comes in many forms, including credit cards, car loans, mortgages, student loans, and more.
- New credit: Too many recent lines of credit or hard inquiries into your credit score can lower your credit. Hard inquiries typically occur when a lender needs to see your credit history, so keep that in mind when applying for credit.
What is the difference between a good and fair credit score?
The main difference between a good credit score and a fair credit score is that a good score is higher than fair. If you have a good score, lenders will be more willing to let you borrow credit from them. Fair credit scores fall between 580 and 669 on the FICO model and between 601 and 660 on the VantageScore model.
If you have a fair credit score, you may have limited credit card options and less favorable interest rates on credit lines. For instance, you may not qualify for many popular travel credit cards or the best cashback credit cards.
However, you may still be approved for credit cards that have been designed for individuals with fair credit scores. Cards like the Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card and Citi Secured Mastercard can help you improve your fair credit score to a point at which you’ll qualify for cards with increased rewards and benefits.
How to improve your credit score to excellent
The best way to improve your credit score to excellent is to make decisions that align with the factors that make up your credit score. Most lenders solely focus on these factors when determining your creditworthiness, so it’s essential you focus on them as well.
Here are the best ways to work your way up to an excellent credit score:
- Be vigilant about payments. Because late and missed payments have a huge impact on your credit score, you shouldn’t ever be late on your payments. Set up reminders for yourself when your payments are due using your credit card’s online account. Get into the habit of paying off your balance around the same time every month and you’ll be less likely to forget about it.
- Open multiple credit accounts and keep them open. The more positive credit history you have, the better. As you slowly open more accounts and have them open for long periods of time, your credit score should build if you keep your accounts in good standing. Don’t cancel your credit cards if you don’t have to, especially if they’re your best source for lenders to see a long credit history.
- Utilize different forms of credit. More than one credit card or more than one loan can be beneficial for your credit, but if you also mix up your credit sources, you can build your credit faster. Don’t open more lines of credit if you don’t need to, but keep in mind that a new form of credit can help your score. So if you’ve never had a car loan before and are looking to get a new car anyway, this is a natural way of improving your credit.
- Use the credit you need. If you use too much credit on a regular basis, your credit score can drop. So continue to use credit, but don’t use all of your credit as much as possible. Going over 30% credit utilization may happen now and then, but it shouldn’t be a frequent occurrence.
If you follow these guidelines, you’ll help build your credit up to the point at which it’ll be in the excellent range. At that point, you’ll qualify for the best credit cards available and the lowest interest rates.
If you have good credit, you’re well on your way to building your credit score up to an excellent level and reaping the rewards that come with it. Be patient as you work on your credit and make sure you follow the recommendations illustrated above.
We’ve picked a variety of rewards cards that can help you on your credit-building journey while also providing useful benefits. Use this guide to choose the right card for you by seeing which one most aligns with your lifestyle and financial goals.