The Ultimate Guide to Credit Cards
Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Best Credit Cards For Millennials of 2021

Best Credit Cards For Millennials

credit card advice

Brittney Mayer
By: Brittney Mayer
Updated: July 29, 2021
Advertiser Disclosure

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 | 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 $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), plus 1% on all other purchases. Plus, earn 8% cash back on tickets at Vivid Seats through January 2023
  • 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
  • 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months; 14.99% - 24.99% variable APR after that
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
14.99% - 24.99% (Variable)
$0
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

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy new benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining and 2X points on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Backâ , your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.99% - 22.99% 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

4.8/5.0
  • Earn cash back twice! Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
  • To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time
  • Balance Transfer Offer: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 13.99% - 23.99%, based on your creditworthiness. Balance Transfers do not earn cash back and will have a fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
  • If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance (including balance transfers) by the due date each month.
  • 24/7 access to customer service representatives
  • $0 annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
0% for 18 months
13.99% - 23.99% 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.

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

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • Earn 50,000 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®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year. Through December 31, 2021, gas station & grocery store purchases will also count towards earning your Travel Credit
  • Earn 5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3X points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 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
  • With Pay Yourself Backâ , your points are worth 50% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • 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
16.99%-23.99% Variable
$550
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.

The Platinum Card® Review

at the issuer'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • Earn 100,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new card to make $6,000 in purchases in your first 6 months of Card Membership
  • Earn 10X Membership Rewards® points on eligible purchases on your new Card at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S. on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first 6 months of Card Membership
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel, on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year. Also earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels on AmexTravel.com. Earn 1X points on all other eligible purchases. Terms apply.
  • $200 annual hotel credit, $200 annual airline fee credit, $25 monthly Equinox credit, $15 monthly Uber cash credit, $100 annual Saks Fifth Avenue credit, and more.
  • Platinum Card Members have unlimited complimentary access to all locations of The Centurion Lounge
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A (Charge Card)
$695
Excellent

This card recently introduced the highest annual fee of a consumer card we know of — but that fee includes $15 a month in Uber credits, whether for UberEats or ride-sharing. That’s up to $200 for Uber rides or eats orders annually. You’ll also become an Uber VIP, where available, without meeting minimum ride requirements and be matched with top-rated drivers.

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 $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), plus 1% on all other purchases. Plus, earn 8% cash back on tickets at Vivid Seats through January 2023
  • 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
  • 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months; 14.99% - 24.99% variable APR after that
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
14.99% - 24.99% (Variable)
$0
Excellent, Good

This card’s 3% 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.

American Express® Gold Card Review

at the issuer’ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★

4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn 75,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on purchases on your new card in your first 6 months of card membership
  • Earn 4X Points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases. Also earn 4X Points on restaurants, 3X points on flights when booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com, and 1X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, Boxed and other participating partners. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees, like checked bags and in-flight refreshments, are charged by the airline to your Gold Card account
  • $250 annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
N/A (Charge Card)
$250
Excellent

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.

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.

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

★★★★★
4.7

OVERALL RATING

4.7/5.0
  • Earn 50,000 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®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year. Through December 31, 2021, gas station & grocery store purchases will also count towards earning your Travel Credit
  • Earn 5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3X points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • 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
  • With Pay Yourself Backâ , your points are worth 50% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • 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
16.99%-23.99% Variable
$550
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

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 60,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $600 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get our best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase—or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.99% - 23.99% (Variable)
$95
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. Or, transfer miles to a qualifying airline loyalty program to combine with your existing frequent flyer miles.

Discover it® Miles Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • UNLIMITED BONUS: Only Discover gives you an unlimited match of all the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles.  There’s no signing up, no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a Miles-for-Miles match.
  • Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase - with no annual fee.
  • Redeem Miles to pay any part of your monthly bill, including your minimum payment.
  • Turn Miles into cash in any amount, any time. Or redeem as a statement credit for travel purchases like airfare, hotels, rideshares, gas stations, restaurants and more with no blackout dates. However you redeem, Miles keep the same value. And Miles never expire.
  • No Blackout Dates. Simply pay for travel purchases like airlines, hotels, rental cars, and more with your Discover it® Miles card.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR for 14 months
10.99% Intro APR for 14 months
11.99% - 22.99% Variable APR
$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. This means you never have to deal with pesky blackout dates.

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

★★★★★
4.9

OVERALL RATING

4.9/5.0
  • INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match – only from Discover. Discover will automatically match all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year! There’s no minimum spending or maximum rewards. You could turn $150 cash back into $300.
  • Earn 5% cash back on everyday purchases at different places each quarter like Amazon.com, grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and when you pay using PayPal, up to the quarterly maximum when you activate.
  • Plus, earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases - automatically.
  • Redeem cash back in any amount, any time. Rewards never expire.
  • Use your rewards at Amazon.com checkout.
  • #1 Most Trusted Credit Card according to Investor’s Business Daily.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 14 months
0% for 14 months
11.99% - 22.99% Variable APR
$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 category each quarter to earn the bonus rate on qualifying purchases up to a set limit.

Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card Review

at the issuer’ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★

4.6

OVERALL RATING

4.6/5.0
  • Earn 5% cash back at Aamzon.com and Whole Foods market
  • Earn 2% cash back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores, 1% back on all other purchases
  • Exclusively for customers with an eligible Prime membership
  • Get a $70 Amazon Gift Card instantly upon credit card approval
  • See your rewards balance during checkout at Amazon.com and easily use rewards to pay for all or part of your purchase — no minimum rewards balance to redeem rewards
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
14.24% – 22.24%
$0 (Prime Membership Required)
Good/Excellent

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.

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.

Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured Credit Card Review

at the issuer’ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★

4.0

OVERALL RATING

4.0/5.0
  • Earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice: gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores, or home improvement/furnishings and 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs on the first $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club purchases each quarter, then earn 1%
  • Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • A minimum refundable security deposit of $300 (maximum of $4,900) is required to open this account
  • Access your FICO® Score updated monthly for free, within your Mobile Banking app or in Online Banking
  • Optional overdraft protection option helps prevent declined purchases, returned checks or other overdrafts when you link your eligible Bank of America® checking account to your credit card. Transfer fees may apply.
  • $0 annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
23.99% Variable
$0
Bad/Limited

This card rewards 3% cash back for online shopping purchases, which is but one of several 3% categories you can choose from. This is a new offer from Bank of America that is quite appealing given the flexibility in cash back rewards. You’ll also receive a 0% intro APR to help finance a large purchase and achieve a nice signup bonus.

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.

EXPERT'S RATING

★★★★★
4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn a one-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
  • Earn unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), plus 1% on all other purchases. Plus, earn 8% cash back on tickets at Vivid Seats through January 2023
  • 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
  • 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months; 14.99% - 24.99% variable APR after that
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • No annual fee
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 15 months
0% for 15 months
14.99% - 24.99% (Variable)
$0
Excellent, Good

A no-annual-fee option for saving on entertainment and dining, this card provides 3% cash back on everything from museums to sporting events.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card Review

at the issuer’ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★

4.8

OVERALL RATING

4.8/5.0
  • Earn up to $400 Back in the form of statement credits: Earn 20% back on Amazon.com purchases on the Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $200 back – plus, earn $200 back after you spend $3,000 in purchases on the Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership
  • Earn 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year on purchases (then 1%). Also earn 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
  • Earn 3% cash back on transit, including U.S. gas stations, taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses, and more. All other purchases earn 1% cash back.
  • Access to Global Assist® Hotline – 24/7 medical, legal, financial and other select emergency assistance and coordination services
  • 0% intro APR for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable APR applies
  • $0 intro annual fee, $95 annual fee thereafter
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% for 12 months
N/A
13.99% – 23.99% Variable
$0 intro; $95 thereafter
Excellent Credit

If you do a lot of streaming, whether music, podcasts, or videos — this card just may be your new best friend. The Blue Cash Preferred Card features an industry-leading cash back rate for select U.S. streaming subscriptions, including Hulu, Netflix, Audible, Spotify, Pandora, and more.

Citi Premier® Card Review

at the issuer’ssecure website

BEST OVERALL RATING

★★★★★

4.6

OVERALL RATING

4.6/5.0
  • Earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit – Enjoy $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, through thankyou.com, once per calendar year
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
N/A
N/A
15.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
$95
Excellent, Good

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

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.

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