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Best credit cards for seniors

Looking to find the best credit card for rewards, travel and more as a senior? Learn more about our favorite cards

Summary

The ideal credit card for seniors offers cash back on everyday purchases, retirement savings, incentives for wellness or reward points for travel.

The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date; however, some of our partner offers may have expired. Please review our list of best credit cards, or use our CardMatch™ tool to find cards matched to your needs.

Retirement can look different depending on the individual, but one thing is always true: Seniors want their spending to work to their advantage during their golden years.

One easy way to achieve this goal is to use credit cards that not only allow the freedom to purchase goods and services, but also give something tangible back in return. This could be cash back on everyday purchases, the opportunity to build retirement savings, low, ongoing APRs or points earned for bucket-list travel. 

Adam Garcia, financial expert with The Stock Dork, doesn’t think retiring means you have to cut up your credit card. “In fact, retirement leaves space for projects that may require an initial investment,” he says. “As long as you’re not accruing debt and keeping healthy control of your finances, there’s no reason that you can’t still make use of credit.”

Seniors need to evaluate their personal needs and decide which credit cards reward their spending habits and provide benefits to match their interests. Here are some options to consider.

See related: How women can save for retirement

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card – Best for travel 

Retirement offers plenty of free time to explore all those places on your bucket list. If you’re a senior who loves to travel multiple times a year, David Aylor, lawyer in finance and corporate law, recommends the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card.

 “It offers plenty of travel rewards that aren’t tied to specific vendors,” Aylor says. Venture Rewards “allows seniors freedom of choice in vendors so the trip planning isn’t a complete pain.”  

Given the annual fee, this card might be best for “seniors who aren’t on a tightly limited budget,” Aylor says.

  • Rewards include: 2X miles on every purchase
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Sign-up bonus: One-time bonus of 60,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening 
  • Other perks: No foreign transaction fees and travel insurance every time you leave home. Also, up to $100 credit toward TSA PreCheck or Global Entry.
  • APR: The ongoing APR is 15.99% to 23.99% variable.

See related: How to get preapproved for a Capital One card

Citi® Double Cash Card – Best for everyday purchases

Whether it’s buying groceries or ordering online, most seniors will appreciate a card that rewards every purchase they make. The Citi Double Cash Card is effective for “seniors who are retired and living on a fixed income,” says Sarah Barness, credit card expert and editor for Finder.

The best credit cards for seniors, she believes, are ones that offer reliable cash back and a secure payment method. Seniors who carry a balance may also want a credit card with a low APR.

“The Citi Double Cash Card is one great option as it offers a simple flat cash back rate, up to 2%, as long as payments are made on time,” Barness says. “It also has no annual fee, a low purchase APR and a 0% intro APR on balance transfers.”

  • Rewards: 2% cash back on every purchase – 1% when you buy, plus an additional 1% when you pay off your bill 
  • Annual fee: None
  • Other perks: No caps on the amount of cash back earned and no category restrictions on rewards 
  • Intro APR: 0%
  • APR: Variable APR will be 13.99% to 23.99% based on your creditworthiness

See related: Best cash back credit cards

myWalgreens credit cards – Best for health and wellness

Seniors focused on health and wellness who like the idea of going to the same pharmacy for their prescription needs should consider the myWalgreens Credit Card or Mastercard. Both offer 5% to 10% at Walgreens, and the Mastercard offers another 3% on groceries, gym and other health and wellness purchases.

“One example of a senior who might select the myWalgreens Credit Card is Michael,” says Maria Smith, vice president of payments and financial services at Walgreens. “Michael has a few regular prescriptions and is managing his diabetes. He visits his neighborhood Walgreens multiple times a week for quick shopping trips.

“With the myWalgreens Credit Card, he will be rewarded for every purchase he makes at Walgreens, whether that’s on the things that help him manage his condition — like glucose monitor and testing strips, alcohol swabs and sugar-free candy — or picking up batteries, greeting cards or whatever else he needs.” Unlike myWalgreens Credit Card, Walgreens Mastercard gets an additional 3% on groceries, gym memberships and other health and wellness purchases, 1% on everything else. 

  • Rewards include: 10% rewards on Walgreens brand purchases, 5% rewards on all other Walgreens purchases
  • Annual fee: None
  • Other perks: Credit monitoring and $0 fraud liability
  • APR: The ongoing APR is 17.99% to 26.99% variable.

Fidelity Rewards Visa Signature – Best for retirement savings and college savings accounts

If saving and family are on your mind, you can use the Fidelity Rewards Visa Signature card* to have cash directly deposited into an account of your choice. “This allows you to increase your retirement savings while also helping to cover healthcare expenditures or contributing to your children’s or grandchildren’s education,” says Jennifer Harder, CEO and founder of Jennifer Harder Mortgage Brokers. 

Assuming you have a qualified Fidelity account, this card offers 2% cash back on purchases and 2 points per dollar spent on eligible products, equating to a $1 reward for every $50 you spend. 

  • Rewards include: 2 points for every eligible dollar spent, which equals 2% cash back when deposited into an eligible Fidelity account to which your card is linked. Qualifying Fidelity accounts include: traditional, Roth, rollover and simplified pension IRA, charitable giving account, health savings account, brokerage account, cash management account, Fidelity Go investment management account, Fidelity-managed 529 college savings plan accounts. 
  • Annual fee: None
  • Other perks: Credit monitoring and $0 fraud liability
  • APR: Ongoing APR is 13.99% variable

AARP® credit card – Best for dining and driving

Seniors who love to drive and dine out will benefit from the AARP credit card since it offers 3% cash back on restaurants and gas station purchases.

This credit card doesn’t offer travel rewards, cautions Jordan Bishop, CEO and founder of the financial website YoreOyster, and the “benefits are somewhat standard but especially useful for seniors who go out to eat in their vehicles a lot.” 

  • Rewards include: $100 cash bonus when users spend $500 on purchases in the first three months, 3% cash back on restaurants and gas station purchases, 1% on all other spending  
  • Annual fee: None
  • APR: 16% to 23% ongoing

Bottom line

Seniors need to determine what they value most before they can choose the right credit card. Do they prefer to travel or build retirement savings – or would they prefer to be rewarded for everyday purchases made at home? “Ultimately, the less you have to think about how to use your card and the more the card can work for you, the better,” says Barness. 

*All information about the Fidelity Rewards Visa Signature and the AARP credit card has been collected independently by CreditCards.com and has not been reviewed or approved by the issuer.

 

Editorial Disclaimer

The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective assessment of our writers and is not driven by advertising dollars. It has not been provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

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