The Instacart Mastercard® makes a lot of sense if you often use Instacart for grocery shopping. Its high earning rate on Instacart orders is one of the best available, but there are better alternatives if you don’t use Instacart to get your groceries.
In this Instacart credit card review, you can explore the complete breakdown of this card’s benefits and drawbacks. This can help you decide whether the Instacart Mastercard is the right choice for you.
Generous Welcome Bonus and Cash Back on Instacart
$100 Instacart credit (plus 1 free year of Instacart+)
5% cash back on Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases; 5% cash back on travel purchased via phone through the Chase Travel Center; 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services; 1% cash back on all other purchases
- Welcome offer: $100 Instacart credit (plus 1 free year of Instacart+)
- Earn 5% cash back on Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases
- Earn 2% cash back on restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services
- No annual fee
- After the first year, the Instacart+ membership auto-renews at a cost of $99 per year
- $100 Instacart credit (plus 1 free year of Instacart+)
- 5% cash back on Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases; 5% cash back on travel purchased via phone through the Chase Travel Center; 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services; 1% cash back on all other purchases
Who should get the Instacart Mastercard?
The new Instacart Mastercard is aimed at people who use Instacart. If you often get your groceries in store or via other means, there are better rewards credit cards available.
The Instacart credit card has a $0
annual fee and offers an excellent 5% cashback rate on the Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases. Although this earnings rate is tough to beat, keep in mind that it all revolves around using Instacart.
Earning 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services is helpful, but some of the best cashback credit cards offer better rewards in these categories.
|Card type||Cash back/Travel|
|Credit card issuer||Chase|
|Credit card network||Mastercard|
|Intro bonus||$100 Instacart credit (plus 1 free year of Instacart+)|
|Cashback rates||5% cash back on Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases; 5% cash back on travel purchased via phone through the Chase Travel Center; 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services; 1% cash back on all other purchases|
|Recommended credit score||Excellent, Good|
|APR||19.49% to 28.24% (variable)|
|Foreign transaction fee||None|
Instacart Mastercard benefits and perks
- Welcome offer: Receive $100 Instacart credit (plus 1 free year of Instacart+).
- $0 annual fee: The Instacart Mastercard has a $0 annual fee.
- Cashback rewards: Earn 5% cash back on Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases; 5% cash back on travel purchased via phone through the Chase Travel Center; 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services; 1% cash back on all other purchases.
- Instacart+ benefits: Use your free year of Instacart+ to enjoy benefits such as free delivery on orders over $35, lower service fees on every order, and 5% credit back on pickup orders (excluding alcohol).
- No foreign transaction fees: Avoid paying any foreign transaction fees abroad by using the Instacart Mastercard.
- Mastercard network: Use your credit card in more than 210 countries and territories on the Mastercard network.
- Purchase protection: Enjoy the World Elite Mastercard benefits, including purchase protection that gives you coverage against damage or theft of new eligible purchases. Check out our list of the best credit cards for online shopping for other cards with shopping benefits.
- Extended warranty protection: Get a longer warranty period on eligible new purchases on top of the manufacturer’s warranty.
- Auto rental collision damage waiver: Receive coverage against damage or theft of eligible rental cars.
- Baggage delay insurance: Qualify for potential reimbursement for eligible baggage delays.
- Lost luggage reimbursement: Receive reimbursement for eligible lost or damaged luggage.
- Travel accident insurance: Receive travel accident insurance when you pay for an eligible trip.
- Roadside assistance: Receive access to a roadside assistance program for help with flat tires, lockouts, and more. Cardholders should keep in mind that this access uses a pay-per-use model.
- Travel and emergency assistance services: Get access to travel and emergency assistance services. Cardmembers can get help contacting or locating medical, legal, and other types of services while traveling.
- 24/7 concierge service: Access a 24/7 World Elite Mastercard concierge service for help with a variety of travel needs, including booking dinner reservations, finding concert tickets, and more.
Drawbacks to the Instacart credit card
- No bonus rewards for non-Instacart groceries: Aside from the Instacart spend category, the reward rate is mediocre compared with other credit cards. You may prefer a different card for your non-Instacart spend.
- No online travel redemptions: Although the Instacart credit card offers travel redemptions, you have to call in to redeem your rewards for travel. You may also have to pay a service fee for using the Chase Travel Center. This seems like an unnecessary hassle considering Chase already has a robust online travel portal.
- No intro APR offer: The Instacart credit card doesn’t provide an intro APR offer. Check out our list of the best 0% APR credit cards for top credit cards with intro APR offers.
Earning & redeeming cash back
Potential earnings in years one and two
Here's a look at how your cash back can add up with the Instacart Mastercard. To calculate these values, we used a point valuation of 1 cent per point.
Remember, this is an estimation. The actual value will be determined by how much you spend and in which categories you spend.
Year one earnings: $963
Year two earnings: $863
These values are based on the FinanceBuzz Credit Card Rewards Valuation Model, which looks at points earned via spending, the sign-up bonus, and the annual fee. We calculated these values assuming all your grocery purchases are made using Instacart, which provides 5% cash back when you use this credit card.
NoteYou also receive a free year of Instacart+ with the Instacart Mastercard, which typically costs $99 per year. You can add this benefit to your year-one earnings for a total value of $1,062.
Best ways to earn
|Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases||5%|
|Travel purchased via phone through the Chase Travel Center, including flights and hotels||5%|
|Restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services||2%|
|All other purchases||1%|
The best way to earn cash back with the Instacart Mastercard is by using it on purchases that offer elevated rewards. The main category for earning the most rewards possible with this card is on the Instacart app and Instacart.com purchases, which offers 5% cash back.
Buying $5,000 in groceries per year through Instacart using the Instacart Mastercard can give you $250 ($5,000 x 0.05 = $250) in cash back.
The other 5% category of travel purchased via phone through the Chase Travel Center, including flights and hotels doesn’t make as much sense for everyday earning potential. You have to call in to buy anything through the Chase Travel Center, and you may also pay service fees. It’s much easier to book travel arrangements online using one of the best travel credit cards.
The 2% category of restaurants, gas stations, and select streaming services can be helpful if you don’t already have a credit card that offers more rewards for these purchase categories.
Maximizing your redemptions
You can use your Instacart credit card cashback rewards for these redemption options:
- Cash back: Receive a statement credit or a direct deposit into a linked bank account.
- Travel: Book a flight, hotel stay, car rental, cruise, and more by calling the Chase Travel Center.
- Instacart purchases: Pay for part or all of an Instacart purchase.
Instacart credit card redemptions all have the same value of 1 cent per point (e.g., 10,000 points equals $100), so there’s no advantage in choosing one redemption option over another. However, booking a travel redemption requires calling in and may charge service fees.
Note that Instacart purchase redemptions aren’t yet available (as of Nov. 3, 2022), but Chase and Instacart state that this redemption option will be available soon.
Instacart Mastercard FAQs
What protection does Instacart Mastercard have?
The Instacart Mastercard has these protections and coverages as part of its World Elite Mastercard benefits:
Does the Instacart credit card offer intro APR?
No, the Instacart credit card doesn’t offer an intro APR on purchases or balance transfers. Some Chase credit cards that provide intro APR offers include:
How can I get a free Instacart membership?
You can get a free Instacart+ membership with certain Chase credit cards:
- 12 free months with the Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- Six free months with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Three free months with the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, Chase Freedom Flex℠, Chase Freedom® Student credit card, and Chase Slate Edge℠
Does the 5/24 rule apply to the Instacart credit card?
Yes, the Chase 5/24 rule applies to the Instacart credit card. This unofficial rule says that Chase may deny your credit card application if you opened five or more credit cards from any credit card issuer in the past 24 months.
What benefits does Instacart+ offer?
Instacart+ offers these benefits:
- Grocery delivery service from retailers such as Costco, Smith’s, Sam’s Club, Walgreens, and more
- No delivery fees on orders of $35 or more
- Reduced service fees on every order
- 5% credit back on pickup orders (excluding alcohol)
- Family account to share benefits
- Exclusive offers from partnerships with Chase, Delta, and other partners
Other cards to consider
Instacart Mastercard is a great card for Instacart users. However, if it doesn’t seem to be the right card for you, you can compare credit cards and learn more about our top recommendations. Two of the main alternatives are these two cards:
The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express has a $0 annual fee and offers 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations, and U.S. online retail purchases (up to $6,000 per year on purchases in each category, then 1%); and 1% cash back on other eligible purchases. Terms apply.
The Amex Blue Cash Everyday provides better earning potential compared with the Instacart Mastercard if you don’t always buy your groceries using Instacart. This card also provides intro APR offers on purchases and balance transfers.
Check out our Blue Cash Everyday Card review for more details.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited® has a $0 annual fee and offers 5% cash back on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards, 3% cash back on dining and drugstore purchases, and 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.
The Chase Freedom Unlimited beats the Instacart Mastercard for earning rewards on non-Instacart grocery purchases and on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service. It also helps that the Freedom Unlimited provides intro APR offers on purchases and balance transfers.
Find out more in our Chase Freedom Unlimited review.
Generous Welcome Bonus and Cash Back on Instacart
Why We Like It
$100 Instacart credit (plus 1 free year of Instacart+)
See how these cards compare:
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
- Earn a $200 statement credit after spending $2,000 in purchases in the first 6 months
- Introductory APR offer for purchases and balance transfers
- 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations, and U.S. online retail purchases (up to $6,000 per year on purchases in each category, then 1%)
- Annual fee of $0. Terms apply.
- See rates and fees
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
- Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back
- Bonus rewards on travel, dining, and drugstores
- No annual fee
- Intro APR on purchases and balance transfers