The Best Credit Cards for Back-to-School Shopping

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Last updated on August 24th, 2023

It’s back-to-school time, which means shopping for supplies, clothes, books, and more. Plenty of rewards credit cards are designed to help parents save as they deck their kids out in the latest technology and threads. Not sure which credit card is right for your shopping habits? Here are some of our best picks for back-to-school shopping for parents:

At A Glance

The Best Back-to-School Shopping Credit Cards for Parents

So, what are the best credit card options for parents looking to maximize their savings when back-to-school shopping? Here are some of our favorite options:

Prime Visa

Prime Visa
Excellent-Good
BestCards.com uses a variation of FICO Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Credit Needed: Excellent/ Good
Visa Processing Network
None Annual Fee

Prime Visa

  • 19.49% to 27.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
  • 19.49% to 27.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Balance Transfer APR
  • 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR

At a Glance

The Prime Visa offers cardholders impressive rewards on all Amazon.com and Whole Foods purchases, as well as elevated cash back at gas stations, drug stores, restaurants, transit, commuting, and more.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • Instant Amazon.com gift card on approval
  • Earn 5% Back at Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market with an eligible Prime membership, plus 5% Back on purchases made through Chase Travel.
  • Earn 2% Back at restaurants, gas stations, and drugstores, plus 2% Back on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • Earn 1% Back on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • No annual fee
  • Regular Purchase APR: 19.49% to 27.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Intro Balance Transfer APR: N/A
  • Balance Transfer APR: 19.49% to 27.49% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $39
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $39
  • Minimum Deposit Required: N/A
  • You frequently shop at Amazon or Whole Foods
  • You have an existing Amazon Prime membership
  • You want a card with no foreign transaction fees and Visa concierge services for your travel plans
  • You want a flexible rewards program, including savings at gas stations dining
  • You want the excellent customer service Amazon is known for

The Prime Visa is a no-brainer if you love shopping with Amazon and have an Amazon Prime membership. The card, issued by Chase, offers an impressive 5% cash back on purchases at Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market locations. Purchases at gas stations, drugstores, and restaurants earn 2% cash back – but that 5% with Amazon is what makes it such a tremendous back-to-school shopping credit card.

However, the major drawback of the card is the requirement of an Amazon Prime membership. That subscription has a yearly cost of approximately $139, which is essentially a backdoor annual fee. If you don’t shop enough with Amazon or prefer to avoid a Prime membership, one of the other options below may be better suited for you.

Fortunately, Amazon and Chase have a Prime-free version of the card should you not want that additional charge every year. The Amazon Visa offers many of the same features as the Prime Visa, with slightly reduced rewards potential. Here is how the two Amazon cards compare side-by-side:

Prime Visa 1200x630 1
Prime Visa
Amazon Visa 1200x630 1
Amazon Visa
Amazon Prime membership required? Yes No
Rewards Earn 5% back on Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market purchases Earn 3% back on Amazon.com and Whole Foods Market purchases
Earn 5% back on purchases made through Chase Travel Earn 3% back on purchases made through Chase Travel
Earn 3% back on purchases at restaurants, gas stations, and drug stores Earn 2% back on purchases at restaurants, gas stations, and drug stores
Earn 2% back on local transit and commuting, including rideshares Earn 2% back on local transit and commuting, including rideshares
Earn 1% back on all other purchases Earn 1% back on all other purchases
Annual fee No annual fee No annual fee

This is something also touched upon in our Back-to-School Guide for Teachers, but the Prime Visa is a great back-to-school shopping option with the welcome bonus of an Amazon gift card upon approval. New accounts can earn a $100 Amazon.com gift card on approval – perfect for adding a little more spending power to your kid’s clothing, supplies, or snacks budget.

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
Excellent-Good
BestCards.com uses a variation of FICO Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Credit Needed: Excellent/ Good
Mastercard Processing Network
$0 Annual Fee

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

  • 18.99% – 28.99% (Variable) Regular Purchase APR
  • 18.99% – 28.99% (Variable) Balance Transfer APR
  • 29.99% (Variable) Cash Advance APR

At a Glance

The Citi® Double Cash Card is one of the most versatile cash back credit cards on the market today, thanks to impressive, flat-rate cash back, lucrative introductory 0% APR offers, and more. Cardholders earn 2% back on every eligible purchase: 1% back at the time of sale and an additional 1% back when they pay their statement balance. Cash back is redeemable for statement credits, direct deposits, checks, or converted as ThankYou® points.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
  • To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time.
  • Balance Transfer Only Offer: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 18.99% – 28.99%, based on your creditworthiness.
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back. Intro APR does not apply to purchases.
  • If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance (including balance transfers) by the due date each month.
  • There is an intro balance transfer fee of 3% of each transfer (minimum $5) completed within the first 4 months of account opening. After that, your fee will be 5% of each transfer (minimum $5).
  • Regular Purchase APR: 18.99% – 28.99% (Variable)
  • Intro Balance Transfer APR: 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers
  • Balance Transfer APR: 18.99% – 28.99% (Variable)
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: 3% of each transfer (minimum $5) completed within the first 4 months of account opening. A balance transfer fee of 5% of each transfer ($5 minimum) applies if completed after 4 months of account opening.
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.99% (Variable)
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: 5% of each cash advance; $10 minimum
  • Penalty APR: Up to 29.99% (Variable)
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 3%
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
  • You prefer earning cash back at a flat rate rather than in rotating categories
  • You’re looking to either consolidate existing balances or pay down a large purchase with no interest charges for an extended period of time
  • You like to have the flexibility of converting cash back into lucrative rewards points
  • You’re considering a credit card without an annual fee
Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Terms & Conditions

Want a no-fuss back-to-school shopping credit card? Consider the Citi Double Cash Card. Instead of bonus categories and rolling calendars, the Double Cash Card earns 2% cash back on all purchases, no matter where you make them.

The double cash back with the Citi Double Cash Card works out as an unlimited 1% cash back on all purchases, plus another 1% back that is earned when you pay your statement. The card has no annual fee and a straightforward redemption process through Citi’s online rewards portal (in $25 increments).

Not sure if Double Cash is right for you? Not to worry – there are other excellent unlimited cash back credit cards on the market, including offers from Wells Fargo, TD Bank, and Chase.

My Best Buy Visa Card

My Best Buy Visa Card
Excellent-Good
BestCards.com uses a variation of FICO Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Credit Needed: Excellent/ Good
Visa Processing Network
None Annual Fee

My Best Buy Visa Card

  • 30.99% variable based on the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
  • 30.99% variable based on the Prime Rate Balance Transfer APR
  • 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR
  • 0% to 12.99% for select eligible purchases Intro Purchase APR

At a Glance

The My Best Buy Visa Card is a retail credit card that offers unique rewards on qualifying purchases or financing options to cardholders. Cardholders can select between earning 5% back on Best Buy purchases or special financing through the Best Buy Flexible Financing Program. The card also earns 3% back on gas, grocery, and furniture purchases, 2% back when dining out, and 1% back on everything else – all for no annual fee.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • No annual fee
  • Special financing on select Best Buy purchases or 5% back
  • 3x points on gas, groceries, and furniture stores
  • 2x points on dining purchases
  • 1x points on all other purchases
  • Intro Purchase APR: 0% to 12.99% for select eligible purchases
  • Regular Purchase APR: 30.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer APR: 30.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greate
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $15 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: See Terms
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
  • You want to earn quality rewards for every purchase at Best Buy
  • You’re an existing Best Buy Rewards member, as you can earn increased points with every purchase
  • You want the option of special financing on qualifying Best Buy purchases
  • You do’t want to pay an annual fee

If it’s back-to-school season, some new electronics may be in order. Consider using a credit card like the My Best Buy Visa Card for your electronics purchase needs. Cardholders can get up to 5% back in rewards or flexible financing on qualifying purchases.

In addition, customers will also earn 3% back in rewards on gas purchases, as well as 2% back for dining and groceries, and 1% back in rewards on all other purchases. With the My Best Buy Visa Card, you have an easy, fast, and secure way to finance a new laptop for school or maybe a new pair of headphones for long-hour study sessions.

Occasionally, the card will also feature opportunities to earn extra purchase rewards. Every couple of months, cardholders can benefit from limited-time bonus categories to earn rewards at a more rapid pace. What’s more, you can enjoy the benefits and features of the My Best Buy Visa Card for no annual fee.

Have subprime credit or no credit but still want access to Best Buy electronics and computers? The Buy On Trust Lending Program is a lease-to-buy program where account holders can buy today and pay later. The company offers major brand names like Apple, LG, Bose, and more – with credit limits of up to $5,000 and flexible repayment schedules.

Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card

Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card
Excellent-Good
BestCards.com uses a variation of FICO Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Credit Needed: Excellent/ Good
Mastercard Processing Network
None Annual Fee

Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card

  • 17.99% or 29.74% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
  • 17.99% or 29.74% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Balance Transfer APR
  • 29.74% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR

At a Glance

Capital One has partnered with one of the world’s top retailers to bring shoppers the Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card. Boasting up to 5% back on Walmart purchases (including those from the online site, the Walmart app, Walmart delivery services, and Walmart gas stations) shoppers can enjoy additional savings on already low prices and redeem their earnings towards future purchases, statement credits, gift cards, or travel.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • Unlimited 5% back at Walmart.com including Grocery Pickup and Delivery
  • Unlimited 2% back at Walmart stores and at Walmart and Murphy USA Fuel Stations
  • Unlimited 2% back at restaurants and on travel
  • Unlimited 1% back everywhere else Mastercard® is accepted
  • Points never expire
  • No annual fee
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Regular Purchase APR: 17.99% or 29.74% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer APR: 17.99% or 29.74% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: 3% of each transfer at the promotional APR. None for balances transferred at the regular transfer APR
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.74% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $39
  • You primarily shop at Walmart for your groceries or household items
  • You shop frequently, but not enough to warrant a wholesale club membership
  • You want rewards for travel and dining
  • You have a good or excellent credit score
  • You prefer a Walmart credit card to a store card or a Walmart MoneyCard debit card
  • You want a card with no annual fee
Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card

Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card

Terms & Conditions

At Walmart, the savings are always rolling, especially during back-to-school season. Stretch the Walmart savings by using the Capital One® Walmart Rewards™ Card. As a cardholder, you can earn up to 5% cash back on your purchases with no annual fee.

If you’re already a frequent shopper at the Walmart online storefront, the 5% cash back reward is a benefit you’ll appreciate. The card earns 5% cash back on purchases made at Walmart.com, including pickup and delivery services. In addition, you can get 2% cash back in-store and at Walmart fuel stations, restaurants, and on travel purchases. Cardholders can also earn 1% cash back everywhere else Mastercard® is accepted.

Other Walmart Options

Like Best Buy, there are other options available for Walmart shoppers. For those looking for more variety, or even more of everything, consider the Sam’s Club® Mastercard®. Issued by Synchrony Bank, it earns 5% cash back on gas (on the first $6,000 per year, then 1%) and 3% cash back on Sam’s Club purchases for Plus members. Club members earn 1% cash back plus 3% cash back on dining and takeout and 1% cash back on other purchases at Sam’s Club and wherever Mastercard is accepted for no annual fee. And you can also use the card at Walmart, as it is Sam’s Club’s parent company.

But what if you want to stay away from credit altogether? In that case, check out the popular Walmart MoneyCard®. The MoneyCard® is a debit card that offers 3% cash back at Walmart.com, 2% cash back at Walmart fuel stations, & 1% cash back at Walmart stores – up to $75 each year in total rewards. Even better, the program provides a 2% interest rate on up to a $1,000 balance in your savings account.

Target RedCard™ Mastercard

Target RedCard™ Mastercard
Excellent-Good-Fair
BestCards.com uses a variation of FICO Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Credit Needed: Excellent/ Good/ Fair
Mastercard Processing Network
None Annual Fee

Target RedCard™ Mastercard

  • 28.15% variable based on the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
  • 31.15% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR

At a Glance

The Target RedCard™ is a family of credit, debit, and prepaid cards from Target and TD Bank, with the most interesting option the no annual fee Target RedCard™ Mastercard. The card offers 5% off on Target purchases, plus 2% cash back on gas and dining, and 1% back on everything else.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • Unlimited 5% savings at Target and Target.com
  • 2% cash back on dining and gas station purchases
  • 1% back on all other purchases
  • Additional 30-day return policy on select items
  • 2-day delivery
  • No annual fee
  • Regular Purchase APR: 28.15% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance APR: 31.15% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
  • Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $30
  • You primarily shop at Target for your groceries or household items
  • You want basic rewards for gas and dining purchases
  • You have a good or excellent credit score
  • You want a card with no annual fee

Another place to get your back-to-school shopping started is Target. With that said, the Target RedCard™ Mastercard could be a convenient choice for all your school needs. In conjunction with affordable Target back-to-school deals, the Target RedCard™ Mastercard can grant cardholders additional savings when it’s used to make purchases.

The Target RedCard™ Mastercard earns saves customers 5% off when they shop at Target online and in-stores. The 5% discount is accompanied by rewards of up to 2% on purchases. Credit cardholders can earn 2% rewards on dining and gas purchases, as well as 1% rewards everywhere else Mastercard is accepted. And there is no annual fee which means less money coming out of your wallets.

Other card benefits include:

  • Free 2-day shipping
  • Exclusive special items and offers
  • Additional 30 days for returns and exchanges

Check out more

Rewards Credit Cards

About: Cory
Cory Santos

Cory is BestCards.com's "Jack of all trades" and resident credit expert, covering all facets of the credit card space. Cory holds academic degrees in both the U.S. and U.K. In addition to credit cards, Cory finds that jogging, cats, and memes are essential parts of a balanced day.

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