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Best cashback credit cards

Credit cards that offer cashback give you back a percentage of your spending as cold hard cash

There is no such thing as a definitive best cashback card, but you can choose between cards that offer:

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Find a credit card that will give you back cash as you spend

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Finding a card that has the best cashback offer isn’t as simple as finding the card that pays the highest rate of cashback, you’ll want to consider how you use your card and where you’re spending.

Highest cashback

Some cards give you back a higher percentage of your credit card spending as cash, although be careful as often catches like annual fees and caps on cashback will apply.

American Express

This card from American Express will give you the highest rate of cashback available – 5%.

However, a few catches apply:

  • You can earn 5% on all your spending up to £2,500 (you can get a maximum of £125 cashback)
  • The 5% rate only applies for the first three months of owning the card
  • There is a an annual fee of £25
  • You will need to pay off the balance in full each month or you will be charged interest at a rate of 22.9%

After the first three months the cashback rate drops down to 1.25%, but as a sweetener you can get a bonus 2.5% cashback on purchases for one month if you spend more than £10,001 in a year.


The Santander 123 card can deliver some very lucrative cashback, depending on how you use it.

You can earn:

  • 3% cashback on the first £100 you spend each month at all major petrol stations, as well as National Rail and TFL purchases
  • 2% cashback on the first £150 of purchases made at all major department stores
  • 1% on the first £300 you spend in supermarkets

In effect your cashback is capped at £108 per year.

It’s worth noting there are other reasons to choose this card, namely the 23 months 0% on purchases and balance transfers with no transfer fee. But there is a £36 annual fee unless you have or open a Santander 123 current account.

No-fee cashback cards

It is possible to get cashback without having to pay an annual fee for the privilege.

American Express

This is the fee-free equivalent of the American Express Platinum Card, as you would expect you get a slightly lower rate of cashback.

You can still enjoy three months of 5% cashback on all purchases, but there is a lower cap of £100. After this cashback is staggered, if you spend:

  • £0 to £3,500 you earn 0.5% cashback
  • £3,500 to £7,500 you earn 1% cashback
  • over £7,501 you can earn 1.25% cashback

Again, you need to make sure you pay off your balance in full each month, or you will be charged 22.9% interest on any outstanding balance.


This is a versatile card with sizable 0% interest periods for purchases (15 months) and balance transfers (26 months) as well as no fees for overseas spending.

You can earn 0.5% cashback on all your purchases in the UK, there is no limit on the amount of cashback you can earn.

The only catch is that this card is only available to Nationwide current account customers, so if you want it, you’ll need to open a current account with them.

Cashback if you have poor credit

If your credit history is limited, or if you have missed a few repayments you might struggle to get one of the very best cashback cards, however you could consider a credit builder card.


This card from Aqua offers 0.5% cashback on all spending and has no foreign transaction fees, so can also be good to take on holiday.

To help you improve your credit score Aqua offer you free unlimited access to your full credit report (this would normally cost you about £15 per month).

Aqua specialise in providing credit to those who may struggle to be accepted elsewhere, they will consider your application even if:

  • You’re self employed and unable to prove a regular income (or just have a low income), you work part-time or are a student
  • You’ve had any CCJs (other than in the past 12 months)
  • You’re new to credit, or you’ve not had a credit card in the UK before
  • You’ve been turned down for credit in the past

Read more…

Compare cashback credit cards

Find a credit card that will give you back cash as you spend

Compare credit cards