Updated April 2nd, 2018.

Hands down, we think the following credit cards are the best among the popular offers we've vetted. So take a moment to review our handpicked short list, including the best travel, cash-back, 0% intro purchase APR, and balance-transfer credit cards.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Best for: Premium travel

Chase Sapphire Reserve

VIP perks

Chase Sapphire Reserve® was built from the ground up for premium travel. Notably, the 50,000 points sign-up bonus earned after spending $4,000 within three months is worth $750 redeemed for Ultimate Rewards® travel, plus the card packs in $300 worth of annual travel statement credits and a $100 credit toward paying Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®* application fees. Tack on 3x points per dollar for travel and dining (1x point per $1 on everything else) and you can start to see why this card deserves a spot on on our list. Read our full Chase Sapphire Reserve® review for more.

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Chase Sapphire Preferred®

Best for: Sign-up bonus and travel

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

A best-in-class travel card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® offers one of the largest sign-up bonuses we know of for a card with an annual fee below $100. New cardholders earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on new purchases in the first three months. All points redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards® are worth 25% more than redeeming for cash back, leaving qualifying cardholders with a bonus worth up to $625. What's more, travel and restaurant purchases earn 2x points per $1, all other purchases earn 1 point per $1, and points can be transferred to a long list of Chase's participating transfer partners, all with a low annual fee of $95 (waived the first year). These are just a few reasons we consider Chase Sapphire Preferred® a must-have, best-in-class credit card for sign-up bonuses. We also picked it as one of the best travel credit cards. Read our full Chase Sapphire Preferred® review to learn more.

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Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

Best for: Sign-up bonus and travel

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

2x miles per $1

Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is a good bang for your buck with its sign-up bonus of 50,000 miles after spending $3,000 within the first three months of account opening and its $95 annual fee (waived the first year). Few cards we know of offer up such a big bonus for a low annual fee. The cards value is increased with its high, uncapped rewards. All purchases earn 2x miles per $1 and can be redeemed for partial statement credits against travel starting at $25. That combination of rewards and flexibility explains why we think it's one of the best travel cards. Read our full Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card review to learn more.

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Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card

Best for: Travel and $0 annual fee

Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card

$0 annual fee

Flexible rewards are a busy traveler's best friend, and Bank of America® Travel Rewards punches far above its weight. All purchases earn 1.5x points per $1 and can be redeemed for travel-related statement credits, making this a powerful travel credit card for cardholders searching for cheap deals using their preferred booking portal. Qualifying new cardholders can also look forward to an offer of 20,000 points bonus – redeemable for $200 in travel-related statement credits -- after spending at least $1,000 on new purchases in the first 90 days, plus no annual fee. Read our full Bank of America® Travel Rewards review to learn more.

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Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Best for: Bonus cash back and $0 annual fee

Bank of America Cash Rewards

$150 sign-up bonus

Cardholders looking for a solid cash-back credit card should expect one packed with valuable features, such as Bank of America® Cash Rewards. This credit card dishes out a lucrative $150 new cardholder cash rewards bonus offer and one of the lower spending thresholds we've come across, requiring cardholders to spend at least $500 on purchases in the first 90 days. Tons of other perks are available as well, including bonus-category cash back of 3% on gas and 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (on the first $2,500 quarterly in combined bonus category purchases), a 0% intro APR offer, and your FICO® Score for free. For these reasons, we think it's also one of the best cash-back credit cards. Read our full Bank of America® Cash Rewards review to learn more.

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Discover it® - Cashback Match™

Best for: Bonus cash back and $0 annual fee

Discover credit card

Up to 5% cash back

Discover it® - Cashback Match™ may be one of the most versatile cash-back cards we know of. Many cardholder essentials are included, such as a lucrative sign-up bonus that matches all cash back earned in the first year for new members, 5% bonus cash-back up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate, a 0% intro APR offer, a $0 annual fee, and even a FICO® score for free. We Fools value convenience/versatility in credit cards and we think this card fits that bill. Read our full Discover it® - Cashback Match™ review to learn more.

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Want a longer 0% intro APR for balance transfers? Check out Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer to get a 0% intro APR for 18 months for balance transfers, and still get the same cash back rewards and bonus. Read our full Discover it® - 18 Month Balance Transfer Offer review to learn more.

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BankAmericard® Credit Card

Best for: Balance transfers and intro balance transfer fee offer

Credit card image

$0 intro balance transfer fee

BankAmericard® Credit Card stands out among the balance-transfer credit card pack with its $0 intro balance transfer fee for transfers made within 60 days of account opening (3%, $10 min. thereafter). Tack that on to the cards 0% intro APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases and balance transfer made within 60 days, and you can start to see why we think it's one of the best balance-transfer credit cards. Read our full BankAmericard® Credit Card review to learn why its 0% intro APR offer is such a precise debt-cutting tool

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Chase Slate®

Best for: Balance transfers and intro balance transfer fee offer

Chase Slate

$0 intro balance tranfer fee

Chase Slate® is one of the most well-round balance-transfer credit cards we've come across. That's because the card offers a $0 intro balance transfer fee offer for transfers made within 60 days, a 0% intro APR for 15 months for balance transfers and purchases, plus a FICO score for free. All three card benefits are essential for cardholders wanting to pay off debt faster and cut out-of-pocket costs while doing so. Read our full Chase Slate® review for more.

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Barclaycard Ring™ Mastercard®

Best for: Low interest rate and $0 balance-transfer fee

Barclaycard Ring

$0 balance-transfer fee

Cardholders may have more debt than can be paid off during a card's 0% intro APR period. In that case, a credit card with a low rate and $0 balance-transfer fee is a solid option. Barclaycard Ring™ Mastercard® includes one of the lowest interest rates we've come across for purchases and balance transfers, and the rate is in line with what many people could secure with a personal loan. Plus, the card includes a free FICO score. Read our full review of Barclaycard Ring™ Mastercard® to learn more.

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Citi® Double Cash Card

Best for: Cash back and $0 annual fee

Citi Double Cash Credit Card

Fully baked 2% cash back

The Citi® Double Cash Card stands out among cash-back cards because it offers an innovative rewards program that smart use of debt by paying off balances. All purchases earn a total of 2% cash back – technically, 1% when purchased and 1% when paid off. This is among the highest cash-back rates for all purchases on the market. What's more, Citi® Double Cash Card helps indebted cardholders pay down balances faster when taking advantage of the card's 18-billing-cycle, 0% intro APR for balance transfers.  Read our full Citi® Double Cash Card review to learn more.


 

 

Citi Simplicity® Card

Best for: 0% intro APR and $0 annual fee

Citi Simplicity Credit Card

0% intro APR for 21 months

Cardholders seeking occasional payment forgiveness may find Citi Simplicity® Card to be a suitable balance-transfer credit card. Citi Simplicity® Card-No Late Fees Ever doesn't charge late payment fees, and it doesn't bump up a cardholder's APR as a penalty for missed payments. But the card doesn't skimp on features in favor of a longer leash for payment forgiveness. Citi Simplicity® Card dishes out a swoon-worthy 21-billing-cycle, 0% intro APR on both new purchases and balance transfers. Read our full Citi Simplicity® Card review to learn more.

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