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Best Mastercard Credit Cards

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by Sean Bryant | Updated Jun. 13, 2017
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Overview

Anyone looking to add a MasterCard to their wallet has plenty of cards to choose from. As one of the largest payment networks, there is a card available for everyone. You will have your choice of rewards cards, student cards, business cards, and card that have a primary focus of building healthy credit habits. To help make your decision process a little easier, we have gone through and broken down each card and figured out the best MasterCards for cash back, travel, balance transfers and for those with poor credit. See More


Best MasterCard Credit Card for Balance Transfers

More Details

  • Get 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers and Purchases for 21 months. After that, the APR will be 13.24%-23.24% based upon your creditworthiness.*
  • There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer.
  • 24/7 access to Citi® Concierge for help in booking hotels, flights and more.
  • $0 liability on unauthorized purchases and Citi® Identity Theft Solutions.
  • No annual fee*
  • Free access to FICO® Scores*

Annual Fee

$0

Purchase Intro APR

0% for 21 Months

Balance Transfer Intro APR

0% for 21 Months

Regular APR

13.24% - 23.24% Variable

Benefits

When looking for a balance transfer credit card, one of the most important things is the length of time you will receive 0% APR. Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card knocks it out of the park and is one of the industry leaders. When you transfer a balance to this card, you will receive an introductory 0% APR for the first 21 months. Once that’s over, it will become a 13.24% - 23.24% Variable.

Having such a long introductory 0% APR is one thing, but this card also comes with no annual fee. This makes Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card an affordable card to keep in your wallet for the long term.

This card also has many different shopping and travel benefits. You will receive damage and theft purchase protection, as well as an extended warranty. If you use this card to book travel, you will receive car rental insurance, travel accident insurance, as well as trip cancellation and interruption insurance.

Things to Consider

One thing to keep in mind if you are going to do a balance transfer, is that there will be a fee of $5 or 3.0%, whichever is greater. You will want to do the math to make sure this will be the best choice for your situation.

Verdict

If you are looking for a balance transfer credit card and would like a MasterCard, Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card is a great choice. It has no annual fee and one of the longest 0% APR periods available.

Best MasterCard Credit Card for Cash Back

More Details

  • Earn cash back twice on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back
  • 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 14.24% - 24.24% based on your creditworthiness
  • Click 'Apply Now' to see the applicable balance transfer fee and how making a balance transfer impacts interest on purchases.
  • No categories to track, no caps on cash back, no annual fee*

Annual Fee

$0

Purchase Intro APR

N/A

Balance Transfer Intro APR

0% for 18 Months

Regular APR

14.24% - 24.24% Variable

Benefits

If you are looking to get a new MasterCard credit card that will help you earn cash back rewards, check out Citi® Double Cash Card. This card will reward you twice. To start you will receive 1% cash back on every purchase that you make. Then when you pay off the purchase you will receive another 1%.

In addition to being a great cash back card, Citi® Double Cash Card also has one of the industry's longest introductory 0% APR on balance transfers. If you need to move an existing balance from a high interest card, you will receive 0% APR for a full 18 months. Once the introductory period is complete, the APR will switch to 14.24% - 24.24% Variable.

Because this card is part of the MasterCard® network, you will receive a few other great benefits. Some of them include; purchase protection, extended warranty and concierge services.

Things to Consider

Citi® Double Cash Card has one of the highest cash back rates available. Unfortunately it does not include a sign-up bonus. Plus, you will not have the chance to earn extra cash back on bonus categories.

Verdict

If you are looking for a cash back card from MasterCard®, then you can’t go wrong with Citi® Double Cash Card. Not only does it have a simple, easy-to-understand cash back system, but it also has no annual fee.

Best MasterCard Credit Card for Poor Credit

More Details

  • No annual fee, and all the credit building benefits with responsible card use
  • Unlike a prepaid card, it builds credit when used responsibly, with regular reporting to the 3 major credit bureaus
  • You will get an initial $200 credit line after making a security deposit of $49, $99, or $200, determined based on your creditworthiness
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time with no additional deposit needed
  • Easily manage your account 24/7 with online access, by phone, or using our mobile app
  • It's a credit card accepted at millions of locations worldwide

Annual Fee

$0

Purchase Intro APR

N/A

Balance Transfer Intro APR

N/A

Regular APR

24.99% Variable

Benefits

If you are looking to rebuild your credit, then a great card to have is Capital One® Secured MasterCard®. Most secured cards will require cardholders to put a deposit down on their account. This will act as their credit limit. With Capital One® Secured MasterCard®, things are a little different.

With this card you will have a more flexible option. Depending on your creditworthiness, you can put down $49, $99 or $200 and receive a $200 credit limit. Once you’ve made your first five monthly payments ontime, Capital One can elect to increase your credit limit without requiring an additional deposit.

This card will also come with several Platinum MasterCard benefits. Some of these include extended warranty on purchases, car rental insurance, travel accident insurance and price protection.

Things to Consider

Capital One® Secured MasterCard® comes with no annual fee, but it does have a very high APR of 24.99% Variable Because of this, it’s crucial that you do your best to pay your balance each month and avoid any unnecessary finance charges.

Verdict

If you are looking for a credit card that will help you rebuild credit, Capital One® Secured MasterCard® is a great option. You will receive a flexible deposit based on your credit score, but you will also have the chance to have your credit limit increased with good payment habits.

Best MasterCard Credit Card for Travel

More Details

  • Earn 30,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening*
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to four companions traveling with you on the same reservation*
  • Enjoy preferred boarding on American Airlines flights*
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases.
  • Receive 25% savings on in-flight food and beverage purchases when you use your card on American Airlines flights*
  • Double AAdvantage® miles on eligible American Airlines purchases*
  • Earn 10% of your redeemed AAdvantage® miles back — up to 10,000 AAdvantage® miles each calendar year*

Annual Fee

$95, waived for the first 12 months

Purchase Intro APR

N/A

Balance Transfer Intro APR

N/A

Regular APR

16.49% - 24.49% Variable

Benefits

If you are looking for a new travel credit card, look no further than Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select™ World Elite MasterCard®. This card is perfect for travel lovers that enjoy flying American Airlines or their partners.

When you sign up, you will receive 30,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® miles after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months. You will also receive 2x miles when you use your card on American Airlines purchases. Use the card on any other purchase and you will receive 1x miles.

You will receive your first checked bag for free and group one boarding. When you redeem your miles, you will receive 10% back into your account, up to 10,000 each year.

Things to Consider

Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select™ World Elite MasterCard® has an annual fee of $95, but it’s waived the first year. Because American Airlines is part of the OneWorld alliance, you are limited on how you can redeem your miles. You can’t use them on airlines that are part of the Star Alliance or SkyTeam partners.

Verdict

If you are a frequent traveler on American Airlines, then Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select™ World Elite MasterCard® is a great card to have in your wallet. You will receive a high signup bonus, the ability to earn bonus miles on American Airlines flights and great flight benefits.

Methodology SmartAsset has developed a quantitative and independent system for evaluating the relative value of a credit card offer versus other offers in the marketplace. Our system evaluates cards based exclusively on their features, such as their rewards earning rate (if applicable), fees, perks, and rewards program redemption options. The annual rewards values on this page are calculated using annual spending assumptions in various categories such as, but not limited to, gas, restaurants, airfare, and US supermarkets. These spending assumptions are built on research that SmartAsset has conducted on existing cash back credit cardholders. Our promise with our credit card recommendations is that we will always strive to have the most comprehensive, accurate, and objective method of evaluating credit card offers. Any recommendations are solely determined by the result of this research and model, and is never influenced by any fees, commissions, or other forms of compensation that SmartAsset may receive from credit card issuers for leads generated on our website.

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