GigaPoints Releases New Data On Credit Card Annual Fees

Credit Card Rewards Earned from at Least $12,000 in Annual Spending Outweigh the Cost of the Annual Fee 

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (September 13, 2021) — New GigaPoints research has revealed hidden insights on credit card annual fees. Using its proprietary, anonymized user transaction data, GigaPoints is able to reach new insights:

  1. If you spend less than $12,000 a year on a credit card, you should stick with a no annual fee card.
  2. Credit cards with annual fees often offer a) better rewards (i.e. bonus points in common categories of spending) and b) extra perks. Once you start spending more than $12,000 a year on credit cards, the additional earnings usually outweigh the annual fee.
  3. Most annual fee cards also come with a welcome bonus that is more valuable than the annual fee.

The insights are based on anonymized GigaPoints user data. GigaPoints matches consumers with the credit cards that will earn them the most rewards—in points, miles or cash back. Users securely and privately link their credit cards to GigaPoints, which analyzes their spending and identifies the best cards for them. GigaPoints’ algorithms also estimate the annual value of those rewards. 

Additional findings from the annual fee study include:

— 53 of the top 100 most rewarding credit cards have no annual fee. Virtually all cash back cards, which offer the simplest rewards available, have no annual fee.

— On the other hand, the most popular airline and hotel cards generally come with an annual fee of $75 or more. Cards offering transferable points programs come in a wide variety of annual fees.

— In general, annual fees get consumers three benefits:

  1. Better rewards earnings: For example. 4 points per dollar spent on dining and groceries.
  2. Welcome bonuses: For example, 100,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points for signing up.
  3. Additional perks: For example, monthly discounts off certain vendors (Uber, GrubHub) or card specific perks like free checked bags or lounge access.

For more detailed analysis and additional charts, please see What the Data Tells Us About Annual Fees from the GigaPoints Research Series.

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About GigaPoints

GigaPoints is a data-driven credit card comparison platform that gives consumers a fast, easy and secure way to get highly personalized credit card recommendations, so they can earn the most rewards possible for their spending. Launched in 2020, the company was built from Founder/CEO Erik Budde’s passion for helping consumers maximize their credit-card benefits. GigaPoint’s patent-pending technology analyzes a user’s spending, mapping it to hundreds of credit cards and their unique rewards systems.