With today’s high gas prices and our Nation’s dependency on foreign oil, it’s no wonder gas rebate credit cards have become increasingly popular. If you can pay off your balance in full each month, gasoline rebate cards are a great way to earn extra rewards from your gas purchases and may even help lower your overall gasoline costs. Here’s how gasoline rebates work:
How Gas Rebate Cards work
Unlike ‘standard’ cash rebate programs which only distribute rewards quarterly or yearly, most gasoline rebates are applied directly to your credit card statement each month. In most cases, there are no forms to fill out, phone numbers to call, or requests to be made to receive benefits – making gas rebates a breeze.
The average savings on a gas rebate credit card is 3%. But you can earn even more if you shop around and take advantage of special bonus rewards. For example, the Chase BP Visa® Rewards Card offers double rewards for the first 2 months. That’s 10% in rebates on BP purchases! Plus, most gasoline rebate cards allow you to earn rewards from everyday purchases as well – normally 1%.
Here’s an example:
The best way to determine how much you can save with a gas rebate credit card is to do the math. Let’s take a look an example of how much you can earn over a 1 year period. Let’s assume you apply for a gasoline rebate credit card which pays 1% in rebates on regular purchases, and 3% at gas stations and other select locations:
Amount You Charge
Percent You Earn
Rebates You Earn
|Regular Charges||$ 4,000||1%||$ 40|
|Gas Purchases||$ 5,000||3%||$ 150|
|Other Locations||$ 1,000||3%||$ 30|
|TOTAL||$ 10,000||$ 220.00|
If you spent a total of $10,000 over 1 year ($4000 x 1% and $6000 x 3%), you would receive a total of $220.00 in savings in 1 year (assuming all charges we made at the beginning of the 12 month period)
Types of Gasonline Credit Cards
Cards Offered by Gas Stations:
Sometimes gas companies will team with a major credit card company to offer rebates on gas and other purchases made at their stores. These cards will carry the logo of the credit card company (i.e. Mastercard, Visa, etc.), as well as that of the gas station. This type of card is particularly useful if you frequent a particular brand of gas stations. But the rebates might only be applied to purchases made at those specific stores.
NOTE: If your rebates are limited to particular gas stations, you might end up paying higher gas prices. This could negate the benefit of using the card altogether!
Cards Offered by Credit Card Companies:
This type of gas rebate card is much more flexible. These cards not only offer rebates on your gas purchases, but rebates anywhere you shop. Plus, you’re not limited to just one brand of gas station! TheDiscover More Card and Citi® Dividend Platinum Select® Card are great examples. They’re extremely flexible and allow you to earn 3-5% in rebates on gas – plus, 1% on all other purchases.
Other facts to consider:
The average interest rate on gas rebate cards is 15%– a bit higher than your typical credit card. This means if you carry a balance from month-to-month, you’d probably be better off looking for a lower APR card instead. Also, be sure to read the fine print. Some rebates can only be earned through pay-at-the-pump purchases. And there’s often a limit to the rebate amount– typically $300 per year. Find a rebate card that doesn’t limit your rewards.
* See a complete list of gasoline rebate credit cards →