Best No Annual Fee Credit Cards with a Welcome Bonus

We all know that credit card bonuses are the absolute best. If you have a good credit score, you can reward yourself with a load of bonus miles or points in return for using a bank’s credit card. Turn those into flights, hotel stays, and you have yourself a nice little paid vacation.

And while many of these cards offer huge welcome bonuses, some have some nice perks too.

The trick is finding the right cards. One factor that can turn you off to this is that many of the best card offers also have an annual fee. They may give you 100,000 miles but then tack on a $95 or $295 annual fee.

If you like the card or you use their partner a lot, as can be the case with airlines or hotels, then keeping the card can make a lot of sense. Maybe the card gives you a higher status with the airline or hotel. Maybe it just gets you to the front of the line at check-in.

But what if you’re simply anti-annual fee? I know a lot of people who are against paying a fee out of principle. I get that 100%.

Well, if you’re looking for a credit card with a great bonus and no annual fee, this is the list you want to see:

Table of Contents
  1. Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card – 30,000 Bonus Points
  2. Hilton Honors American Express Card – 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points
  3. U.S. Bank Altitude Go Visa Signature Card – 20,000 bonus points (worth $200)
  4. Chase Freedom Flex – $200
  5. Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card – $200 Cash Back
  6. TD Bank Cash Card – $150 cash back
  7. Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards – $200 Cash Back
  8. Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express – $100
  9. Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express – $250 statement credit*

NOTE: The cards at the beginning of this list do not charge an annual fee. Some of the cards near the end of the list (with asterisks in the heading) offer no annual fee for the first year but do charge one afterwards. I wanted to include them on the list because the offers are strong but I put them towards the end because only the first year is without a fee.

Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card – 30,000 Bonus Points

Marriott Bonvoy Bold CardThe Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card has a great bonus of after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

You also get bonus categories where you earn more than the standard 1X – earn up to 14X total points for every $1 spent at 7,000+ hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy and 2X points on other travel purchases.

Best of all, the annual fee is $0. It’s rare to see a travel card that doesn’t offer a promotional annual fee that gets upped in year 2. Great offer.

👉 Learn more about the Marriott Bonvoy Bold

Hilton Honors American Express Card – 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points

Hilton Honors American Express CardIf you stay at Hiltons (or associated properties), then you’ll want to check out the Hilton Honors American Express Card. You can earn 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases Terms Apply.

The annual fee is $0 and the card gives you complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status. If you spend $20,000 on eligible purchases on the card in a calendar year, you get Hilton Honors Gold status through the end of the next year. (See Rates and Fees)

This is on top of this cashback schedule – Earn 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton portfolio. Earn 5X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. supermarkets, and at U.S. gas stations. Earn 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card.

Learn more about the Hilton Honors American Express Card

U.S. Bank Altitude Go Visa Signature Card – 20,000 bonus points (worth $200)

U.S. BANK ALTITUDE® GO VISA SIGNATURE® CARDThe U.S. Bank Altitude Connect Visa Signature Card has a welcome bonus of 20,000 bonus points (worth $200) spend $1,000 in the first 90 days.

You also get 4X points on dining, takeout, and restaurant delivery; 2X points at grocery stores, grocery delivery, streaming services, gas stations and EV charging stations; plus 1X on all other eligible purchases. Finally, there’s even a $15 credit for annual streaming service purchases (Netflix, Apple TV+, Spotify, etc.).

Not bad for a card with a $0 annual fee. 🙂

Learn more about this card (and others)

Chase Freedom Flex – $200

The Chase Freedom Flex card is offering $200 after $500 in purchases in the first 3 months.

This is on top of a generous cashback schedule – you earn 1% on all other purchases.

Also, you get 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter (must be activated), and 5% on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards, 3% on dining and drugstores.

All this is available to you with $0 annual fee. Can’t beat that price.

👉 Learn more about Chase Freedom Flex

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card – $200 Cash Back

Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit CardThe Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card has a $200 Cash Back after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

If you’re wondering if this card is one you’ll keep using after the bonus – the answer is probably yes.

This is because you also get 1.5% cashback on every purchase, with no limit, which is solid for a daily user. Best of all, there are no rotating categories to remember to activate, no having to pick which card to use, just a solid rate from the jump.

As you’d expect, $0 annual fee.

>> Learn more about this card (and others)

TD Bank Cash Card – $150 cash back

TD Bank Cash CardThe TD Bank Cash Card offers $150 cash back when you spend $500 within 90 days of opening the account. It’s rare that you get such a large bonus when you spend only $500.

It also offers 3% cashback on dining, 2% cash back at grocery stores, and 1% on everything else[ – so it’s a strong daily use card.

It has a $0 annual fee.

Learn more about TD Bank Cash Card

Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards – $200 Cash Back

Capital One Savor CardThe Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards is meant for people who enjoy dining out so the cashback schedule favors that type of spending. But first, you can get $200 Cash Back after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months.

In terms of cash back, you can earn an unlimited 3% cash back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores. You earn an unlimited 1% on everything else – nothing to activate too, you get this all year.

This is a card that has a $0 annual fee to boot!

Learn more about this card and others

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express – $100

American Express Blue Cash EverydayThe Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express is a $0 annual fee card that offers $100 after you spend $2,000 in purchases within the first 6 months, plus earn up to an additional $150 cash back when you shop with PayPal (earn 20% back as a statement credit on purchases when you use your new Card to check out with PayPal at merchants in the first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $150 back).

Also, you earn a generous cashback of 3% at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000/year, then 1%), 3% on U.S. online retail purchases (up to $6,000/year, then 1%), 3% at U.S. gas stations (up to $6,000/year, then 1%) then 1% on other purchases.. You earn the cash back as “Reward Dollars” that can be redeemed for statement credits. Terms Apply.

See Rates and Fees

Learn more about Blue Cash Everyday from American Express

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express – $250 statement credit*

Blue Cash Preferred from American ExpressThe Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express has a great offer – earn $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 6 months.

The card also has a great cashback reward structure – 6% on U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%), 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more). Finally, 1% Cash Back on other purchases. Terms Apply.

There is a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. That’s why such a good offer is listed near the end.

(See Rates and Fees)

Learn more about Blue Cash Preferred from American Express

To see the rates and fees for the American Express cards featured, please visit the following links: Hilton Honors American Express Card: . Blue Cash Everyday(R) Card from American Express: See Rates and Fees. Blue Cash Preferred(R) Card from American Express: See Rates and Fees.

Other Posts You May Enjoy:

Wells Fargo Active Cash Card Review

Cash back credit cards offer flexibility by giving you several ways to redeem your rewards. Most cards allow you to apply your earnings as a statement credit, purchase gift cards and other merchandise, and receive cash payments via a check or bank account deposit. The Wells Fargo Active CashSM Card is no different.

AMEX Points vs. Chase Points: Which is Better?

Two of the most popular credit card families are AMEX and Chase, and both are known for their reward points. But which is the better of the two? To find out, I've compared the two credit card giants using five criteria. It was a close race, but I did manage to come up with a winner.

Reflex Mastercard Review: Better Credit for a Price

The Reflex Mastercard is a secured credit card designed for those trying to build or rebuild their credit. It's easy to qualify for, and you gain access to several Mastercard benefits. But can Reflex compete with other top cards from Capital One, Indigo, or Chime? I cover all of this and more in this Reflex Mastercard review.

Indigo Platinum Mastercard Review: Is it Worth the Cost?

Designed to help you build credit, the Indigo Platinum Mastercard discloses your annual fee and APR before you apply. And unlike a secured credit card, you won't have to contribute a security deposit. In this Indigo Platinum Mastercard review, I cover the card's features, including the positives and negatives, and share some Indigo Mastercard alternatives.

About Jim Wang

Jim Wang is a forty-something father of four who is a frequent contributor to Forbes and Vanguard's Blog. He has also been fortunate to have appeared in the New York Times, Baltimore Sun, Entrepreneur, and Marketplace Money.

Jim has a B.S. in Computer Science and Economics from Carnegie Mellon University, an M.S. in Information Technology - Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as a Masters in Business Administration from Johns Hopkins University. His approach to personal finance is that of an engineer, breaking down complex subjects into bite-sized easily understood concepts that you can use in your daily life.

One of his favorite tools (here's my treasure chest of tools,, everything I use) is Personal Capital, which enables him to manage his finances in just 15-minutes each month. They also offer financial planning, such as a Retirement Planning Tool that can tell you if you're on track to retire when you want. It's free.

He is also diversifying his investment portfolio by adding a little bit of real estate. But not rental homes, because he doesn't want a second job, it's diversified small investments in a few commercial properties and farms in Illinois, Louisiana, and California through AcreTrader.

Recently, he's invested in a few pieces of art on Masterworks too.

>> Read more articles by Jim

Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank or financial institution. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Reader Interactions

Comments

About the comments on this site:

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

  1. Gerald says

    The American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card is offered by Morgan Stanley to their account clients and also to E*TRADE clients, and provides an annual credit of $100 to the Card for spending $15,000 eligible purchases per calendar year. This will more than cover the annual fee of $95. Plus the annual fee is waived the first year. The card name is Morgan Stanley American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card.

    • Jim Wang says

      Thank you Gerald!

      There are a lot of credit cards that offer rewards that cover the annual fee, we wanted to produce a list of credit cards that offered a reward but did not charge a fee. 🙂

As Seen In: