Amazon Just Revamped Its Two Credit Cards — And Their New Features Are Hard to Beat – CNET

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If you’re a frequent Amazon shopper, these two Amazon credit cards just got even better.

The two popular cards offered by Chase and Amazon — formerly the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card and Amazon Rewards Visa Signature Card — received an impressive facelift at the start of May.

Now called the Prime Visa* and Amazon Visa*, respectively, Amazon’s two co-branded credit cards have an improved look, offer additional rewards and come with an even higher welcome offer. And, you can now redeem rewards even faster — as soon as the next day.

Considering Mother’s Day is right around the corner — May 14 to be exact, as a friendly reminder — now is the perfect time to consider adding one of these cards to your repertoire. The new bonus could go a long way toward covering the perfect gift for the mom in your life. And the Prime card offers free Prime shipping, too, so you can get your gift delivered on time.


Prime Visa

Learn More


The best Amazon card

9.5/10
CNET Rating



CNET rates credit cards by comparing their offers to those of their categorical competitors. Each card is individually evaluated through a formula which reflects the standards and expectations of the contemporary market. Credit card issuers have no say or influence in our ratings. How we rate credit cards

Quick Look

Intro Offer

Earn up to $275



Earn up to $275 with this limited-time offer. Get a $150 Amazon Gift Card instantly upon approval and earn 5% back everywhere on up to $2,500 in spending for the first 3 months after account opening ($125 value). Eligible Prime membership required.

Annual fee

$0

APR

18.99% – 26.99% Variable
Rewards rate

1%
– 5%



Earn 5% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market and on Chase Travel purchases with an eligible Prime membership.; Earn 2% back at gas stations, restaurants and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare).; 1% back on all other purchases

Already a good deal before the update, the Amazon Prime Visa card is now even better. You’ll earn a $150 Amazon gift card instantly on approval without needing to meet any spending requirement — a rarity among cash-back credit cards. A $150 gift card could go a long way toward finding the perfect gift for your mom in time for this weekend!

Plus, with the new offer, you’ll also earn 5% cash back on the first $2,500 you spend within three months of account opening. That’s $125 in cash back if you can max out the offer. After the first $2,500 or first three months, you’ll earn rewards at the card’s normal rate for its various spending categories.  Whether you want to buy a gift or spend on everyday necessities, you can use this card for all of your purchases and earn extra rewards for doing so.

And while the main draw of the Prime Visa card was its 5% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods, you’ll now earn this same elevated rate on travel booked through Chase, as well. You’ll also now earn 2% cash back on local transit and rideshare services like Uber and Lyft.

This version of the card requires a Prime membership, which currently clocks in at $15 per month or $139 annually. While this will cut into the card’s value, the card’s $150 instant welcome bonus is more than enough to offset your Prime membership cost for a year. And if you shop frequently on Amazon, the card’s ongoing rewards may make it worthwhile beyond that.

Intro Balance Transfer APR
N/A
Intro Purchase APR
N/A
Regular APR
18.99% – 26.99% Variable
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

5%

Earn 5% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market and on Chase Travel purchases with an eligible Prime membership.

2%

Earn 2% back at gas stations, restaurants and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare).

1%

1% back on all other purchases



Already a good deal before the update, the Amazon Prime Visa card is now even better. You’ll earn a $150 Amazon gift card instantly on approval without needing to meet any spending requirement — a rarity among cash-back credit cards. A $150 gift card could go a long way toward finding the perfect gift for your mom in time for this weekend!

Plus, with the new offer, you’ll also earn 5% cash back on the first $2,500 you spend within three months of account opening. That’s $125 in cash back if you can max out the offer. After the first $2,500 or first three months, you’ll earn rewards at the card’s normal rate for its various spending categories.  Whether you want to buy a gift or spend on everyday necessities, you can use this card for all of your purchases and earn extra rewards for doing so.

And while the main draw of the Prime Visa card was its 5% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods, you’ll now earn this same elevated rate on travel booked through Chase, as well. You’ll also now earn 2% cash back on local transit and rideshare services like Uber and Lyft.

This version of the card requires a Prime membership, which currently clocks in at $15 per month or $139 annually. While this will cut into the card’s value, the card’s $150 instant welcome bonus is more than enough to offset your Prime membership cost for a year. And if you shop frequently on Amazon, the card’s ongoing rewards may make it worthwhile beyond that.

Intro Balance Transfer APR
N/A
Intro Purchase APR
N/A
Regular APR
18.99% – 26.99% Variable
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

5%

Earn 5% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market and on Chase Travel purchases with an eligible Prime membership.

2%

Earn 2% back at gas stations, restaurants and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare).

1%

1% back on all other purchases


Amazon Visa

Learn More


A great choice for non-Prime members

8/10
CNET Rating



CNET rates credit cards by comparing their offers to those of their categorical competitors. Each card is individually evaluated through a formula which reflects the standards and expectations of the contemporary market. Credit card issuers have no say or influence in our ratings. How we rate credit cards

Quick Look

Intro Offer

Earn up to $105



Earn up to $105 with this limited-time offer. Get a $60 Amazon Gift Card instantly upon approval and earn 3% back everywhere on up to $1,500 in spending for the first 3 months after account opening ($45 value).

Annual fee

$0

APR

18.99% – 26.99% Variable
Rewards rate

1%
– 3%



Earn 3% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% back at gas stations, restaurants, and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare); 1% Back on all other purchases

If you don’t feel like paying for Prime, you could opt for the Amazon Visa – the non-Prime membership card. While it didn’t receive the same impressive welcome offer update as its older sibling, it still received a facelift. 

For its improved new cardholder offer, you can earn 3% back on the first $1,500 spent in the three months from account opening, worth up to a total of $45 — compared to the Prime Visa’s maximum bonus earning of $125. You’ll also get an instant $60 Amazon gift card upon approval, a respectable welcome bonus for a no-annual-fee card with no minimum spend requirement.

Its new rewards offer 3% cash back for travel booked through Chase and 2% cash back on local transit and commuting, including rideshares, which add a bit more flexibility to a card mainly meant for Amazon purchases.

Intro Balance Transfer APR
N/A
Intro Purchase APR
N/A
Regular APR
18.99% – 26.99% Variable
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

3%

Earn 3% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases

2%

2% back at gas stations, restaurants, and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare)

1%

1% Back on all other purchases



If you don’t feel like paying for Prime, you could opt for the Amazon Visa – the non-Prime membership card. While it didn’t receive the same impressive welcome offer update as its older sibling, it still received a facelift. 

For its improved new cardholder offer, you can earn 3% back on the first $1,500 spent in the three months from account opening, worth up to a total of $45 — compared to the Prime Visa’s maximum bonus earning of $125. You’ll also get an instant $60 Amazon gift card upon approval, a respectable welcome bonus for a no-annual-fee card with no minimum spend requirement.

Its new rewards offer 3% cash back for travel booked through Chase and 2% cash back on local transit and commuting, including rideshares, which add a bit more flexibility to a card mainly meant for Amazon purchases.

Intro Balance Transfer APR
N/A
Intro Purchase APR
N/A
Regular APR
18.99% – 26.99% Variable
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

3%

Earn 3% back at Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases

2%

2% back at gas stations, restaurants, and on local transit and commuting (including rideshare)

1%

1% Back on all other purchases

Which card is the better deal?

Both newly revamped cards offer a solid return on Amazon.com purchases, but which one is right for you will depend on how much you shop at Amazon, whether you’re a Prime member, and the other credit cards in your wallet.

Despite requiring a Prime membership, for frequent Amazon shoppers, the Prime Visa may offer a better value. In addition to a higher welcome bonus ($150 gift card versus $60 gift card), you’ll also have a higher introductory rewards rate and spending limit.

The Prime Visa also earns a higher ongoing cash-back rate, providing better long-term value for Amazon loyalists.

But if you only occasionally shop on Amazon, and aren’t interested in becoming a Prime member, you may be better off going with the Amazon Visa.

How to get the most from your Amazon cards

If you’re a new cardholder, you should use either Amazon card for any purchase you feel comfortable charging during the first three months (or until you reach your spending cap) — unless you have a credit card that earns a higher rate. Since 5% is typically the upper limit of what cash-back cards offer outside of niche categories, the Amazon Prime card will likely be your best option on most purchases.

You don’t want to overspend to earn the higher cash-back rate. Only charge what you can comfortably afford to repay — otherwise the interest you accrue will likely offset the rewards you earn.

Once you’ve earned the maximum rewards from their welcome bonus, these cards work best when you use them for Amazon-related expenses. And, both cards also now earn rewards for local transit and commuting — including rideshares — so unless you have a credit card that provides greater rewards for those conveniences, use either Amazon card for those purchase types too.

How does the welcome offer compare to other reward cards?

It’s rare to find a welcome offer that doesn’t require you to spend a certain amount within a set timeframe to earn a bonus. The only other credit card that rivals the new welcome offer is Discover. Discover’s credit cards have the Cash Back Match bonus, which means the issuer will essentially double any rewards you earn in the first year of the card at the end of your first year. But, Amazon’s bonus is instant, so you won’t need to wait a year to earn it.

There are other worthwhile welcome bonuses that require a certain amount of spending to reach, but we like that the Amazon card doesn’t require extra spending. And, since you’ll receive your bonus as soon as you’re approved for the card, you can immediately use it toward an upcoming purchase — a boon for anyone doing some last-minute shopping for Mother’s Day or beyond. 

Alternative cards

If you’re unsure of the value you can get from the new Amazon cards, or if you’re not a frequent Amazon shopper, there are other general cash-back cards that may offer a more flexible way to earn rewards on your everyday spending. Here are a few of our favorites: 

  • Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card: The no-annual-fee Active Cash is one of the best credit cards. It earns 2% cash rewards for purchases regardless of category, providing a good deal of flexibility. It’s also a Visa Signature card that comes equipped with some useful consumer protections. It could pair well with either Amazon card too. 
  • Discover it® Cash Back: The welcome offer on the Discover it Cash Back* could rival the value you’d get from either Amazon card, depending on how much you spend. Its rewards work a bit differently, however. The reward categories change quarterly and require manual activation, but they have included Amazon purchases in the past.
  • Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express: As the name suggests, this is a great card for expenses you make frequently. It even includes purchases at U.S. online retailers and at U.S. supermarkets, in case you don’t shop frequently with Amazon. Its welcome offer does require a certain amount of spending first to reach, but it’s still a good deal.

The bottom line

The new Amazon card features beat out many of the best credit cards on the market. Between the new welcome offers, higher limited time rewards rates and boosted travel and transportation rewards, there are many ways to maximize rewards with either card. And with most of us turning to Amazon to find the perfect Mother’s Day gift, the instant gift card could help offset your cost. However, consider how much you spend with Amazon annually to decide which card — if either — will provide the greatest value to you.

*All information about the Prime Visa, Amazon Visa, and Discover it Cash Back has been collected independently by CNET and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

The editorial content on this page is based solely on objective, independent assessments by our writers and is not influenced by advertising or partnerships. It has not been provided or commissioned by any third party. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products or services offered by our partners.

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