investor.com is committed to the highest ethical standards and reviews services independently. Learn How We Make Money

Amazon Visa Review

Dayana Yochim

Written by Dayana Yochim
Fact-checked by Andrea Coombes
Edited by Carolyn Kimball

February 05, 2024

Why trust us? Investor.com has no financial relationship with any of the credit card providers whose products we analyze and review. Our opinions are based solely on data and our own extensive independent research — that means unbiased guidance for consumers. Rewards cards in our cashback credit card calculator are listed in descending order according to how much money they pay out annually based on the inputs.

Earning 3% cash back on Amazon purchases — no annual fee or Amazon Prime membership required — is nice if you’re only an occasional Amazon shopper. However, the Amazon Visa lacks the versatility (and higher earning potential) you can get from other tiered reward rate cards.

The Amazon Visa is essentially a watered-down version of the company’s Prime Visa card. It pays an unlimited 3% cash back (versus 5%) on Amazon.com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods, and Chase Travel purchases. That’s a respectable — not blockbuster — rate among cards that pay bonus rewards in the “online shopping” spending category. But the card’s 2% rate on gas, dining and transit purchases is nothing special when other bonus category cards like Chase Freedom Unlimited and Blue Cash Everyday from American Express offer more generous rewards rates, welcome bonuses, and balance transfer deals.

» Looking for a business rewards card? Amazon offers two American Express cards designed for business owners. See Amazon Business vs. Amazon Business Prime to compare cashback rates and perks.

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

Credit Card Calculator
Monthly Spend
Spend Categories expand_more
Clear All
dining Dining
theater_comedy Entertainment
local_gas_station Gas
shopping_cart Groceries
monetization_on Other
local_pharmacy Pharmacy
card_travel Travel
local_shipping Amazon
storefront Costco
construction Home Improvement
shopping_bag Online Shopping
smart_display Streaming
local_taxi Transit
power Utilities
kitchen Whole Foods
receipt_long Wholesale Clubs

Amazon Visa

Amazon Visa Logo
Cashback Per Year
$...
Annual Fee
$0
Welcome Bonus
$50
Want to compare more cards? Use our full calculator.

Amazon Visa pros and cons

thumb_up_off_alt Pros

  • No annual fee or Prime membership required
  • 3% cash back at Amazon and Whole Foods
  • Accepted everywhere Visa is accepted
  • 0% APR payment plan on eligible purchases
  • Includes Visa travel/purchase benefits
  • No foreign transaction fees

thumb_down_off_alt Cons

  • 1% base cashback rate is low
  • 3% rewards categories very brand-specific
  • 2% dining/gas/transit rate is just OK
  • Wimpy “sign-up bonus”
  • No intro 0% APR on balance transfers/purchases

Amazon Visa cashback rewards spending categories

The following table shows the cashback rewards rate per $1 spent in the six most common spending categories. The “Bonus Rate” refers to the amount you can earn in excess of the card’s standard rewards rate.

Some cashback cards limit the spending amount eligible for the bonus rate (aka the “Spend Cap”). Once you hit that cap (e.g., $1,500 spending in a particular category during a defined time period), the rewards rate on future purchases in that category reverts to the lower “Default Rate.”

Category Default Rate Bonus Rate Bonus Spend Cap Bonus Spend Period (Months)
Gas 2.00% - - -
Travel 1.00% - - -
Dining 2.00% - - -
Entertainment 1.00% - - -
Pharmacy 1.00% - - -
Groceries 1.00% - - -
Other Purchases 1.00% - - -

Note: The cashback rewards calculator applies the 3% rewards rate to the entire amount you type into the “Amazon” spend category. However, some Amazon.com purchases are ineligible (e.g., purchases from Amazon Music, Amazon Games, and other exclusions described below).

Cashback calculator tip: The Amazon Visa card also pays 3% cash back on purchases from Amazon Fresh. For the most accurate tally of how much cash back you could earn per year, add the amount you spend each month at Amazon Fresh in the “Whole Foods” spend category field.

One more tip: Expand the “Spend Categories” in the investor.com credit card rewards calculator above to incorporate additional rewards categories (e.g., Transit, Wholesale Clubs, Utilities) into the cash back per year total.

What we like

No annual fee or Prime membership required. For occasional Amazon shoppers, there’s no cost to carry the card. If you already have an Amazon Prime membership, the Prime Visa — also a no-annual-fee Chase card — offers a more rewarding rate (5% versus Amazon Visa’s 3%). (See more in our Prime Visa review.)

3% unlimited cash back on nearly everything Amazon offers. If you’re on a first-name basis with your local delivery drivers (Hi John! 👋 How’s the baby?), a 3% reward on every brown cardboard box that passes your threshold can add up quickly, especially on big-ticket items.

Whole Foods and Amazon Fresh shoppers score 3% cash back, too. Although it’s more limiting than a rewards card that pays the bonus rate no matter which supermarket you patronize, 3% cash back on groceries is competitive among tiered-rate rewards cards.

3% unlimited cash back on prepaid travel. You can thank Chase for this perk. The elevated travel rewards rate applies to airline tickets, hotels, car rentals and cruises booked through chasetravel.com (or by calling the number on the back of your Amazon Visa card). If you’re a frequent traveler and don’t already have a rewardier travel card, I recommend considering the Prime Visa to earn the 5% cashback rate in this category.

Fast reward redemptions are available through the “Shop With Points” program. This allows you to apply the cash you earn towards a qualifying Amazom.com purchase as quickly as the day after you earn the money. Just make sure your Amazon Visa is one of your Amazon.com account payment options to get this option during the checkout process.

Several reward redemption options. Rewards can be used to pay for Amazon purchases, or as a statement credit, within the Chase universe of rewards (including travel), or you can request actual cash (technically, a check).

Commuters get 2% cash back at gas stations and on transit and commuting costs, including rideshares, taxis, bus and passenger train fare, highway and bridge tolls and parking lots/garage fees. (If you drive a gas guzzler, check out our picks for best gas rewards cards.)

Additional cashback earning opportunities are available through Chase by activating Chase Offers via the mobile app or on the web portal. Cardholders are also eligible for additional discounts on select Amazon products.

Instant Amazon gift card upon approval. Amazon Visa doesn’t offer a traditional “welcome bonus.” Instead, applicants who are approved for the card get an Amazon Gift Card loaded into their Amazon account to fritter away on some of those “Wish List” items. Gift card amounts vary, but most of the offers I’ve seen have been in the $50-$60 range versus $100-$200 upon approval for the Prime Visa.

Interest-free payments for 6-12 months available. Amazon cardholders can opt to pay for qualifying purchases of $50 or more with the e-tailer’s “equal monthly payments” plan without incurring interest charges. Payments on purchases over $250 can be spread over 12 months; lower amounts need to be paid off in six months. Note: Purchases financed under the 0% APR equal-monthly-payment program are ineligible for cash back rewards, and you’ll pay interest on any remaining balances after the promotional period ends.

Travel and purchase protection are built in. These include extended warranty and zero liability protection, purchase protection (up to $500 per claim and $50K per account), baggage delay and travel accident insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, and auto rental collision damage waiver. Want more coverage? The Prime Visa comes with additional Visa Signature benefits.

No foreign transaction fees means avoiding the typical 3% additional charge on purchases made outside of the U.S.

What we don't like

It’s a significant downgrade from the Prime card. If you’re looking for a card that offers Amazon-oriented perks, the Prime Visa leaves the Amazon Visa in the dust. You’ll earn $100 in rewards on $2,000 in Amazon spending using the Prime card, versus $60 using the non-Prime Amazon Visa. Apply that same math to Whole Foods, Amazon Fresh and Chase Travel purchases, and that’s a lot of value left on the table by not upgrading.

Not all Amazon purchases earn 3% cash back. Excluded from the list of items eligible for 3% rewards are purchases from Amazon Music, Amazon Games, international Amazon retail sites, merchants who use Amazon Pay, Buy with Prime, and specific retailers like Zappos, Ring, Woot and PillPack.

You can do better than 2% to 3% cash back. Although I like that the dining, gas and transit rewards categories have no spending caps, there are plenty of other tiered-rate reward cards that offer higher rates on these categories. Type your average monthly spending in the credit card rewards calculator to see how much you can earn with the Amazon Visa versus similar rewards cards.

Lowly 1% cash back on most grocery purchases. The 3% rewards rate on organics and other groceries only applies to purchases at Amazon-owned Whole Foods or Amazon Fresh. Shop elsewhere and you’ll only earn 1%. (Looking for a more appetizing grocery cashback rate? See my picks for best rewards cards for groceries and dining.)

You won’t earn rewards if you use Amazon Pay on another e-tailer’s site. Amazon Pay is a payment processing service that allows customers to buy things on an external merchant’s website with their Amazon account. Because it’s not technically an “Amazon.com” purchase, anything you buy is not eligible for the 3% cashback rate.

Lack of versatility. Apologies for sounding like a broken record (or “glitchy audio file” for the youngs). Although it’s not technically a “store credit card” (as in limited just to Amazon purchases), the reward program is very limiting in that non-Amazon online purchases and non-Chase travel spending are eligible for just the rock-bottom 1% rewards rate.

Wimpy “welcome bonus.” In fact, the $50-$60 Amazon Gift Card cardholders receive upon approval is more like a door prize than a sign-up bonus. (At least there’s no spending requirement to earn it.) Scroll through the list of welcome offers from the credit cards in the investor.com database and you’ll find plenty of comparable cards offering $200 to new cardholders.

Interest-free payments only apply to certain purchases. The Prime Visa’s “equal monthly payments” no-interest option is only available on purchases on Amazon.com or via retailers that accept Amazon Pay. Plus, any purchases enrolled in the 0% interest plan won’t earn rewards.

There is no introductory 0% APR balance transfer offer on the table with this card, but it’s still good to know that if you do want to move an outstanding balance onto your Prime Visa, you’ll have to shell out a fee: Either 4% of the amount of each transfer or $5, whichever is greater.

The bottom line

Is the Amazon Visa the best rewards card for your wallet? The answer depends entirely on your spending patterns. Let the numbers speak for themselves: Use the investor.com Cashback Credit Card Calculator to see which credit card pays back the highest rewards based on how much you spend each month.

Amazon Visa fine print

Important Amazon Visa card terms and conditions and the Amazon Visa rewards program agreement can be found on the Chase website.

Does the Amazon Visa charge an annual fee?

No, there is no annual fee for the Amazon Visa.

tips_and_updates Trivia time!

Roughly 14% of the consumer cashback cards we track in our database charge an annual fee. The average annual fee is $72.60, while the median is $95.

Does the Amazon Visa offer a welcome bonus?

Yes, the Amazon Visa has a welcome bonus of $50.

tips_and_updates Fun fact

Of the more than 60 cashback credit cards in our database, 66% offer a welcome bonus. Currently, the average sign-up bonus on a new cashback card is $210.71, with the median being $200.

How much cash back can I earn with the Amazon Visa?

The average American that spends $1000 per month will earn $154.20 in cash back per year using the Amazon Visa. For comparison, the average annual rewards payout from the cashback credit cards in the investor.com database is $191.26, and $180 is the median.

These calculations are based on average consumer spending data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the reward payout rates from the providers we track. Of course, you’re so much more than an average data point (aka “consumer unit,” in BLS parlance). The amount you can earn in cashback rewards using the Amazon Visa depends entirely on your unique spending habits.

Find out exactly how much you’ll rake in with the Amazon Visa by tailoring the spending inputs in the calculator above.

Even more good stuff



Methodology

The results of the investor.com Credit Card Rewards Calculator are based on the monthly spending amounts you enter and the annual dollar value of the rewards each credit card program pays per $1 spent. Credit card companies often express this payout amount as a percentage (e.g., 1.5% of every dollar spent) or on a points basis (e.g. ,1.5 points for every dollar spent). We converted all of them to a dollar amount (“Cash Back Per Year”) to make comparing offers easier.

To calculate the amount of cash back you could earn per year, we factored in:

  • Spend category inputs: The default dollar values for each “Spend Category” in the Best Cashback Credit Cards tool — gas, groceries, travel, restaurant, entertainment, pharmacy, other — are based on average American spending data from the Consumer Expenditure Surveys from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. We also include additional spend categories (such as streaming services, online shopping, utilities, transit, Amazon and more) to help you see which rewards cards are most closely aligned with your actual spending patterns. We encourage you to customize the monthly spend inputs for the most accurate results.
  • Tiered rewards rates: If a rewards credit card pays higher cashback rates on certain spending categories (also called “Bonus Rewards”), that difference is reflected in the total “Cash Back Per Year” tally.
  • Rewards spending caps: Some cards impose category- or time-based limits (monthly, quarterly, annually) that affect the amount of rewards you can earn. For example, a card may pay 3% cash back on groceries on up to $1,000 of spending each quarter, then revert to the base/default rewards rate until the following quarter. We accounted for bonus spending caps and timeframe in the calculations.
  • Default rewards rates: Purchases that exceed a spending cap are usually subject to a lower default rewards rate (e.g., 1% or 1.5%). We mathed that out too.
  • Annual fees: If a rewards card charges an annual fee, we deducted that amount from the “Cash Back Per Year” total to provide a true accounting of a card’s annual rewards payout.

What’s not included in the “Cash Back Per Year” total is the cash value of any sign-up/introductory bonus. We highlight any Welcome Bonus separately. While sign-up bonuses can be the most lucrative part of getting a new cashback rewards credit card, not everyone will want or be able to do what it takes to earn the extra cash. (It usually requires spending a certain amount in a specified time period after the card is activated.)

About the Editorial Team

Dayana Yochim
Dayana Yochim

Dayana Yochim has been writing (articles, books, podcasts, stirring speeches) about personal finance and investing for more than two decades, focusing on bringing clarity and the occasional comedic aside to what is often a murky, humorless topic. She’s written for NerdWallet, The Motley Fool, HerMoney.com, Woman’s Day, Forbes, Newsweek and others, and been a guest expert on "Today," "Good Morning America," CNN, NPR and wherever they’ll hand her a mic.

Andrea Coombes
Andrea Coombes

Andrea Coombes has 20+ years of experience helping people reach their financial goals. Her personal finance articles have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, MarketWatch, Forbes, and other publications, and she's shared her expertise on CBS, NPR, "Marketplace," and more. She's been a financial coach and certified consumer credit counselor, and is working on becoming a Certified Financial Planner. She knows that owning pets isn't necessarily the best financial decision; her dog and two cats would argue this point.

Carolyn Kimball
Carolyn Kimball

Carolyn Kimball is Managing Editor for Reink Media Group and the lead editor for content on investor.com. Carolyn has more than 20 years of writing and editing experience at major media outlets including NerdWallet, the Los Angeles Times and the San Jose Mercury News. She specializes in coverage of personal financial products and services, wielding her editing skills to clarify complex (some might say befuddling) topics to help consumers make informed decisions about their money.

close