Among the best picks, according to ShopSmart, the sister publication of Consumer Reports:
- Costco American Express, providing 3 percent cash back for restaurants and gas purchases up to $3,000 a year, 2 percent cash back rewards on travel, and 1 percent on everything else, with rewards redeemable at Costco.
- Amazon Visa, offering 3 percent back on Amazon purchases; 2 percent at gas stations, restaurants and drugstores; and 1 percent elsewhere. Rewards are redeemable in cash, gift cards or Amazon points.
- Target, giving 5 percent off at checkout but carrying a 22.9 percent interest rate for balances.
- Walmart Discover Card, offering up to 1 percent cash back for every dollar spent at its stores.
- Nordstrom Visa, providing two customer loyalty points for every dollar spent at its stores, and one point for purchases elsewhere. Big spenders can get perks such as free alterations, concierge services and tickets to fashion shows.
Sid Kirchheimer writes about health and consumer issues.