Fix My Wallet: This is the hack frequent Amazon shoppers may want to try this year. (Psst: it can tack on 5% cash back to Amazon purchases and a $100 gift card.)

Is the Prime Visa right for you?


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Question: What’s the best card for spending a ton of money on Amazon? I spend thousands of dollars every month on Amazon, and I’m not currently getting any rewards. But it’s where I spend the majority of my money and I feel like I’m missing an opportunity to earn rewards on all the money I spend there.

Answer: If you pay your bill in full and on time — and shop a lot at Amazon or Whole Foods — the Prime Visa credit card could prove lucrative for you. That’s because the cash-back perks for those shoppers are pretty great. Here’s what the card offers:

  • Earn 5% cash back on items bought at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods, with an eligible Prime membership.

  • Earn ecent cash back on other purchases: 2% back at restaurants, gas stations, and commuting/local transit, which includes ride-sharing; and 1% back on all other purchases.

  • You may be eligible for a $100 Amazon gift card instantly upon approval, if you have a Prime membership .

  • There is no annual fee or foreign transaction fees.

Both Ted Rossman, senior industry analyst at CreditCards.com and Matt Schulz, credit card expert at LendingTree, say the Prime Visa is very worth it for Amazon loyalists. Indeed, Schulz says that while most retail credit cards are generally best avoided, he doesn’t feel that way about the co-branded Amazon card. “This Amazon card is one of the very few exceptions and there’s a $100 signup bonus that’s available immediately after you’re approved for the card,” says Schulz. 

Have a credit card question? Email us at picks@marketwatch.com.

MarketWatch Picks managing editor Catey Hill has the Prime Visa — but just uses it for Amazon and Whole Foods purchases because of the high cash back at those spots. Other cards have higher cash-back offers for other types of items.

What might those Prime Visa rewards look like? If you spend $1,000 per month on Whole Foods, Amazon.com and/or Amazon Fresh, you’d earn $600 back over a year. If you spend $500 monthly, you’d earn $300 annually. And that doesn’t include rewards of 2% cash back that you will get on restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores that could also top $1000 a year.

There are, of course, catches: This card works best for frequent Amazon and Whole Foods shoppers, and those that pay their credit card bills in full and on time. You’ll have to pay high interest if you don’t.

And you will need to be an Amazon Prime member, which costs $139 a year, to fully reap the rewards. And Nick Ewen, director of content at The Points Guy, says this card works best if you’re already a Prime member. This story can help you figure out if an Amazon Prime membership is worth it for you.

If you’re not an Amazon Prime member or you don’t spend a significant amount of money through Amazon or Whole Foods, you might be better off with a card that offers points or cash back through a different retailer or with more generalized rewards. Anyone with less-than-good credit should also look for an alternative card as interest rates for those with good credit tend to be on the high side for this card.

Have a credit card question? Email us at picks@marketwatch.com.

The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date; however, some of our partner offers may have expired.

The advice, recommendations or rankings expressed in this article are those of MarketWatch Picks, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by our commercial partners.

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