21 Best Credit Cards for Millennials in 2018

21 Best Credit Cards for Millennials in 2018

credit card advice

Brittney Mayer
By: Brittney Mayer
Updated: November 6, 2018
Opinions expressed here are ours alone, and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by any issuer. Site may be compensated through the issuer affiliate programs.

Although the media likes to portray millennials as youngsters who live on their phones, that image needs to grow up — because those millennials certainly have.

In fact, most millennials are well into their twenties, with the older faction of the generation pushing 40. Yes, all the millennials are now full-fledged adults, with all the trappings that implies — like credit cards.

While millennials are growing up, their adult lifestyles reflect their coming of age in a digital world — and so, too, should their credit cards.

Overall | Mobile Payments | Ride-Sharing | Dining | Travel | Online Shopping | Entertainment

Best Overall Credit Cards for Millennials

If you’re going to have a single credit card in your wallet, then you’d better make sure that card has a lot to offer. Otherwise, why waste the space? But there’s no one-size-fits-all credit card.

Picking the right everyday card instead comes down to picking the card that best fits your lifestyle. For example, a travel rewards card is little good if you hardly travel. So, choose the rewards type you’re most likely to redeem, and the card that will offer the most rewards where you spend the most.

  • Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus after you spend $3000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Capital One cardholders get access to premium experiences in dining, entertainment and more
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, $95 after that
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
16.24% - 25.24% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
Excellent, Good

This card is obviously designed with the millennial lifestyle in mind, offering huge rewards on both dining and entertainment purchases. These broad categories include everything from restaurants and bars to movie tickets and live events, making them a must-have accessory for anyone looking to make the most of their experiences.

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
4.8/5.0
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® named a 'Best Travel Credit Card' by MONEY® Magazine, 2016-2017
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.99% - 24.99% Variable
$95
Good/Excellent

One of the top dogs of travel rewards, this card offers 2X Ultimate Rewards® points on travel and dining purchases and unlimited 1X points on everything else. Those Ultimate Rewards® can be redeemed for travel through Chase or transferred to one of a dozen hotel and airline partners for maximum travel value.

CITI® RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
0.0/5.0
  • Earn cash back twice on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% cash back as you pay for those purchases.
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back.
  • Click 'Apply Now' to see the applicable balance transfer fee and how making a balance transfer impacts interest on purchases.
  • No categories to track and no caps on cash back.
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.49% to 25.49% (variable)
$0
Excellent/Good

If your spending doesn’t fit neatly into any categories — or you simply don’t want to have to keep track of where to use what card — this card’s unlimited 2% cash back is an easy way to earn on every card purchase without any hassle. So, whether you prefer to order in and binge stream the latest series, or spend a night on the town hitting the latest hot venues, this card can help you get cash back on every purchase.

Credit Cards with Bonuses for Mobile Wallet Purchases

An easy way to make purchases sans wallet, mobile wallets are just that: a way to use your phone as your wallet.

Whether you use Apple Pay, Chase Pay, or Masterpass — or any of the other half-dozen apps — you may be able to get an extra boost on your rewards by using the right credit card when you tap and go.

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
5.0
OVERALL RATING
5.0/5.0
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable APR of 16.99-25.74%. Balance transfer fee is 5% of the amount transferred, $5 minimum
  • Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate
  • Enjoy new 5% categories each quarter
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - it's automatic
  • Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open and there is no minimum to redeem for cash back.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR on Purchases 15 months
0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers 15 months
16.99% - 25.74% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

While this card doesn’t offer year-round mobile wallet bonus rewards, Chase Pay and other popular mobile wallet services have shown up in at least one bonus category per year for the last couple of years. Remember you can only get the 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in bonus category purchases each activated quarter.

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® Card Review

at Wells Fargo'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.9
OVERALL RATING
4.9/5.0
  • Earn a $200 cash rewards bonus after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases
  • Enjoy 1.8% cash rewards on qualified mobile wallet purchases, like Apple Pay® or Google Pay™, during the first 12 months from account opening
  • No category restrictions or sign ups and cash rewards don't expire as long as your account remains open
  • Get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with your Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® Card
  • 0% Intro APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers (fees apply), then a 15.99%-26.99% variable APR; balance transfers made within 120 days qualify for the intro rate and fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 12 months
0% for 12 months
15.99%-26.99% (Variable)
$0
Excellent/Good

With this card, you’ll receive a small boost to your unlimited cash back rewards when you use a qualified mobile wallet to make your purchases. The bonus for mobile wallet purchases is only good for the first 12 months after account opening.

6. U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card

The U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card is a big-benefit card exclusive to US Bank customers. You’ll earn 3X points per dollar on both travel and eligible mobile wallet purchases.

U.S. Bank Altitude™ Reserve Visa Infinite® Card

  • Earn 3X points per $1 on eligible travel purchases and mobile wallet spending
  • Receive up to $325 annual travel reimbursements
  • Receive 12 annual complimentary WiFi passes

Since the Altitude Reserve is a Visa Infinite card — one of only a handful in the US — cardholders will also enjoy a range of Visa Infinite benefits, including exclusive airfare discounts and other travel-centric perks.

Best Credit Cards for Ride-Sharing on Uber & Lyft

While millennials are hardly the only group to jump on the ride-sharing bandwagon, younger folks are certainly in love with the sharing economy.

Happily, with the right credit card, that love can earn bonus rewards. With these picks, you’ll earn extra points for every Lyft and Uber ride, making it even more affordable to share.

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
4.8/5.0
  • Earn 50K bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.99% - 24.99% Variable
$450
Good/Excellent

This card offers a triple points for travel purchases, a broad category that includes ride-sharing companies, as well as the expected hotel and airline purchases so you can earn big no matter how you travel. Plus, this card offers a number of travel perks, including airport lounge access and an annual travel credit.

Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card Review

at Wells Fargo'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
4.8/5.0
  • New! Earn 30K bonus points when you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months – that's a $300 cash redemption value
  • Earn 3X points for eating out and ordering in
  • Earn 3X points for gas stations, rideshares and transit
  • Earn 3X points for travel including flights, hotels, homestays and car rentals
  • Earn 1X points on other purchases
  • $0 Annual Fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 12 months
0% for 12 months
14.49%-26.99% (Variable)
$0
Excellent/Good

While this card’s points aren’t typically as valuable as the Ultimate Rewards you earn with the Chase card, this card won’t charge you the same giant annual fee — or any annual fee at all. Cardholders can earn 3X points per dollar on travel, including rideshares, as well as triple points eating out and ordering in. Plus, earn the same triple points on select streaming services.

9. Citi Premier Card

The Citi Premier Card is another travel rewards card with a broad travel bonus category that includes ride-sharing purchases.

Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

  • Earn 3X points per $1 spent on eligible travel purchases, including gas stations
  • Earn 2X points per $1 spent on dining out and entertainment
  • Pay no annual fee the first year, then $95

ThankYou Points can be redeemed for a variety of things, but generally offer the best value when redeemed for free flights through the ThankYou® Travel Center.

Cards to Earn Rewards on Dine-In, Take-Out & UberEATS

Whether you’re starting your career, building your empire, or starting a family — we all have to eat.

But while millennials may be more inclined to ride-share their meals with things like UberEATS, plenty still enjoy the “traditional” dine-in and take-out meals of their forefathers. And, no matter how you get your food, you can save on every dining purchase with the right credit card.

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
4.8/5.0
  • Earn a one-time $500 cash bonus after you spend $3000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Capital One cardholders get access to premium experiences in dining, entertainment and more
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, $95 after that
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
16.24% - 25.24% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
Excellent, Good

This card’s 4% cash back on dining will apply to your restaurant purchases at a huge range of restaurants, including dine in and takeout, with no limit on how much you can earn. Cardholders can also enjoy 2% cash back on grocery store purchases, meaning this card has you covered no matter who makes your meal.

11. American Express® Gold Card

The American Express® Gold Card has become the card to beat when it comes to dining, offering an unbeatable 4X Ultimate Rewards® points per dollar on purchases made at US restaurants, including both dine in and takeout purchases.

Graphic of Amex Gold Card

  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points per $1 at US restaurants and grocery stores
  • Receive 3X points on flights booked directly with the airlines
  • Pay $250 annual fee

Cardholders can also enjoy a monthly $10 dining credit for select restaurants including Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House and participating Shake Shack locations, up to a total of $120 a year. New cardholders will also get 20% dining purchases for the first three months, up to $100 total back.

12. Uber Visa Card

A joint effort with Barclays bank, the Uber Visa Card offers 4% cash back on dining, including the eponymous UberEATS restaurant delivery service.

Uber Visa Card

  • Earn 4% cash back on dining purchases, including restaurants, takeout, bars, and UberEATS
  • Earn 3% cash back on hotel & airfare, 2% for online purchases
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases

In addition to purchase rewards, the Uber Visa Card comes with perks and benefits like mobile phone protection, a subscription service credit, and no foreign transaction fees.

Flexible Rewards Credit Cards for Travel Expenses

Although travel may be good for the soul, it can wreak havoc on the budget — that is, unless you have an awesome travel rewards credit card.

Our favorite travel rewards cards are those that offer flexible rewards that can be used with a wide variety of airline and hotels brands, making sure you can redeem your rewards when you want — not when it’s convenient for the airline or hotel.

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
4.8/5.0
  • Earn 50K bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
17.99% - 24.99% Variable
$450
Good/Excellent

Chase’s Ultimate Rewards® are much lauded as some of the best, most versatile travel rewards, with more than a dozen hotel and airline partners to which you can transfer your points. With smart transfers and redemptions, you can get top value out of your Ultimate Rewards®.

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.9
OVERALL RATING
4.9/5.0
  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel
  • Earn 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Plus earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels; learn more at hotels.com/venture
  • Named ‘The Best Travel Card' by CNBC, 2018
  • Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✔®
  • Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime; no blackout dates
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
14.74% - 24.74% (Variable)
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
Excellent, Good

The miles you earn with this card can be used with any travel brand at any time, no blackouts or exclusions, as you’ll simply redeem them for a statement credit to cover qualifying travel-related purchases. Plus, earn bonus miles at hotels.com.

Discover it® Miles Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
4.8
OVERALL RATING
4.8/5.0
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the Miles you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. For example, if you earn 30,000 Miles, you get 60,000 Miles. That's $600 towards travel!
  • Earn unlimited 1.5x Miles for every dollar spent on all purchases all with no annual fee.
  • No Blackout Dates - fly any airline, stay at any hotel.
  • Redeem your Miles as a statement credit towards travel purchases.
  • Freeze your account in seconds with an on/off switch either on the mobile app or website to prevent new purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers.
  • Get your free Credit Scorecard with your FICO® Credit Score, number of recent inquiries and more.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 14 months
10.99% for 14 months
13.99% - 24.99% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

Another simple travel rewards card, this card’s miles are redeemed for statement credit to cover eligible travel-related expenses, including hotels, airfare, and car rentals. Plus, Discover will match the miles you earn in your first year after your anniversary.

Cards for Maximizing Online Shopping Purchases

While not exclusive to millennials, it’s clear that younger generations are driving the growth in online shopping, enjoying both the convenience and potential savings to be found online.

And credit card companies are catching on. A number of issuers are now offering rewards for online shopping purchases, with Amazon.com one of the most frequent retailers to qualify for credit card bonus rewards.

Discover it® Cash Back Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING
★★★★★
5.0
OVERALL RATING
5.0/5.0
  • INTRO OFFER: Discover will match ALL the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year, automatically. There's no signing up. And no limit to how much is matched.
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com and more up to the quarterly maximum, each time you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Receive FREE Social Security number alerts-Discover will monitor thousands of risky websites when you sign up.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 14 months
0% for 14 months
13.99% - 24.99% Variable
$0
Good/Excellent

Although not guaranteed, this card has offered Amazon.com as a bonus category at least one quarter per year for a few years running, often in the fourth quarter when holiday shopping starts in earnest. Activate your bonus category to earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in qualifying purchases.

17. Uber Visa Card

In addition to its other solid bonus categories, the Uber Visa Card offers unlimited 2% cash back on online purchases, including — but not limited to — Amazon.com.

Uber Visa Card

  • Earn 4% cash back on dining purchases, including restaurants, takeout, bars, and UberEATS
  • Earn 3% cash back on hotel & airfare, 2% for online purchases
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases

In addition to purchase rewards, the Uber Visa Card comes with perks and benefits like mobile phone protection, a subscription service credit, and no foreign transaction fees.

18. Amazon Rewards Visa Signature® Card

So long as you have an activated Prime membership, the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card provides 5% cash back on every Amazon.com purchase. Plus, receive 5% cash back when you use your card at Whole Foods grocery stores.

Amazon Rewards Visa Signature® Card

  • Earn 3% back on Amazon.com and Whole Foods purchases; Prime Members earn 5% back
  • Earn 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores
  • Pay no annual card fee, Prime fee may apply

The points you earn with the Amazon Rewards card can be redeemed directly at checkout to pay for most Amazon.com purchases, and you can redeem them for cash back, gift cards, or travel.

Cards to Save on Streaming, Concerts & Other Entertainment

While your average person may complain about the cost of cable, millennials do something about it — by avoiding it altogether. After all, between streaming, gaming, and other forms of entertainment, who needs cable?

Whether you like to stream TV, see live concerts, or enjoy a good amusement park, you can save on your entertainment by using the right card for your purchases.

CITI® RATING
★★★★★
4.6
OVERALL RATING
0.0/5.0
  • Enjoy 0% Intro APR on purchases for 15 months from date of account opening and 0% Intro APR on balance transfers for 15 months from date of first transfer
  • Points are redeemable for gift cards to popular retailers, restaurants and department and home stores. 2,500 ThankYou® Points can be redeemed for a $25 gift card at thankyou.com
  • Earn 2X Points on dining out and entertainment
  • Earn 1X Points on all other purchases
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
15.49% to 25.49% (Variable)
$0
Good/Excellent

A no-annual-fee option for saving on entertainment and dining, this card provides 2X points per dollar on everything from streaming to museums to sporting events.

20. Citi Premier Card

The Citi Premier Card gives users bonus rewards on entertainment spending, including live concerts, sporting events, movie theaters, and on-demand streaming services.

Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

  • Earn 3X points per $1 spent on eligible travel purchases, including gas stations
  • Earn 2X points per $1 spent on dining out and entertainment
  • Pay no annual fee the first year, then $95

ThankYou Points can be redeemed for a variety of things, but generally offer the best value when redeemed for free flights through the ThankYou® Travel Center.

21. Marvel Mastercard®

The Marvel Mastercard® may be designed for Marvel lovers, but nearly anyone can benefit from its 3% cash back category, which includes entertainment purchases like amusement park passes, museum visits, and movie theater tickets.

 Marvel Mastercard®

  • Earn 3% cash back on dining, select entertainment, and eligible Marvel merchandise purchases
  • Earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Pay no annual fee

Beyond the card’s inclusive purchase rewards, the Marvel Mastercard® also offers a host of perks for the Marvel devotee, including discounts and free shipping on MarvelShop.com purchases, as well as special discounts on Marvel Unlimited and Marvel digital comics.

Find a Card that Fits Your Lifestyle

No longer the youngest generation, millennials are growing up — and they need grown-up credit cards to match their changing adult lifestyles. Of course, that doesn’t mean you need to be stuck with your parents’ boring old card.

That’s because credit card issuers are embracing the millennial generation. Whether you love to eat out, order in, shop online, or stream your favorite shows, there’s likely a credit card out there that not only complements your lifestyle, but rewards it.