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5 of the best credit cards for dining, takeout & delivery services


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A growing number of people are finding that their spending on eating out, takeouts, and food delivery services (like GrubHub and DoorDash) is increasing year on year, so it’s more important than ever to make sure that you’re using the right credit card when it comes time to pay.

A wide variety of cards offer bonuses or cashback for spending on dining, takeouts, and food delivery services, so I’ve pulled together a selection of five cards that I believe offer some of the best returns available on dining expenditure. With no-annual-fee cards sharing this list with ultra-Premium cards, there should be a card that fits most people’s wallets in this selection.

The cards

Click the links to advance to the card of your choice


The Chase Freedom Flex Credit Card

Annual Fee: $0 (zero)

The Welcome Offer:

  • New cardholders will earn $200 (or 20,000 Ultimate Rewards Points) after they spend $500 on the Freedom Flex credit card in the first 3 months of opening their new account (find out more)
  • Earn 5% cashback (or 5 points/dollar) on up to $12,000 of grocery store purchases made in the first 12 months of opening a new account

Earnings:

  • 5% cashback (or 5 points/dollar) on up to $1,500 of spending in quarterly revolving categories.
  • 5% cashback (or 5 points/dollar) on travel purchased through Chase’s travel portal.
  • 3% cashback (or 3 points/dollar) on dining (includes take-out and delivery)
  • 3% cashback (or 3 points/dollar) on spending at drugstores

The Chase Freedom Flex card earns 1% cashback (or 1 point/dollar) on spending in all other categories.

Why it’s great for dining, takeout & food delivery services

The 3% cashback that the Chase Freedom Flex card earns on dining is a great return to be given by a no-annual-fee credit card, but for holders of one of the Chase Sapphire cards or the Chase Ink Preferred Card (review), it gets better.

If you hold one of the cards mentioned above, the cashback that the Freedom Flex credit card offers can be taken in the form of Ultimate Rewards Points which, in turn, can be transferred to a variety of airline and hotel loyalty programs where they can be used to extract considerably more value than the basic cashback that the card offers.

I value Ultimate Rewards Points at 1.5 cents each (based on the value I know I can easily get out of each point) and that means that, effectively, holders of the Chase Freedom Flex credit card can earn a rebate of 4.5% on dining and takeout spending…and that’s from a card that costs nothing to hold.

Good to know

The Chase Freedom Flex credit card may be a no-annual-fee card but it comes with a surprising number of fantastic benefits.

Because the card is a ‘World Elite Mastercard’ it offers, among other things, Cell phone protection of up to $800 per claim and $1,000 per year (max 2 claims per year), monthly $10 Lyft credits after 5 rides are taken, $5 off movie tickets with Fandango for every 2 movie tickets purchased, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, 120-day purchase protection and extended warranty protection.

Find out more about the Chase freedom Flex credit card


The American Express® Gold Card

Annual Fee: $250 (rates & fees)

Welcome Offer: Earn 60,000 Amex Membership Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 in the three months immediately following account opening (more info)

Based on the rate at which I can easily redeem Amex Membership Rewards points, I value them at 1.5 cents each which makes the welcome offer worth $900.

Note: The terms and conditions of this offer state that the welcome bonus is not available to applicants who hold or have previously held this card or the Premier Rewards Gold Card. 

Earnings (terms apply):

  • 4 points/dollar on dining
  • 4 points/dollar at U.S Supermarkets (upon to $25,000 of spending/year*)
  • 3 points/dollar on spending made directly with airlines or through Amex travel
  • 1 point/dollar on spending in all other categories

*Any spending made above the $25,000 cap will only earn 1 point/dollar

Why it’s great for dining, takeout & food delivery services

With earnings as high as 4 points/dollar, the American Express® Gold Card offers one of the best returns on dining/takeout/food delivery services that you’ll find and, based on my valuation of 1.5 cents/point, this sees cardholders earn an effective rebate of 6% each time they use the card to eat out or order takeout.

The Amex Gold Card offers a $10/month statement credit for spending at participating Shake Shack locations, at the Cheesecake Factory, at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse locations, and on spending through Grubhub/Seamless.

Good to know

The Amex Gold Card offers a $10/month Uber Cash Credit and it gives cardholders a $75 hotel credit on qualifying charges as well as a room upgrade upon check-in (when available) when they book a stay of at least two consecutive nights at a hotel in Amex’s Hotel Collection.

Find out more about the American Express® Gold Card


The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Annual Fee: $95

The Welcome Offer: Earn 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 in the three months immediately following account opening (more info)

Ultimate Rewards Points can be redeemed for travel through the Chase travel portal at a value of 1.25 cents/point which makes the welcome offer worth $750.

Earnings:

  • 5 points/dollar on Lyft rides through 22 March 2022
  • 5 points/dollar on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards*
  • 3 points/dollar on dining worldwide
  • 2 points/dollar on all travel that isn’t booked through Chase Ultimate rewards^
  • 1 point/dollar for spending in all other categories

*Hotel purchases that qualify for the $50 Anniversary Hotel Credit will not earn 5 points/dollar

^Chase’s “travel” category is very broad so you’ll earn 2 points per dollar on everything from airfare, rental cars, and hotel bookings through to car parking, tolls, and ride-sharing services.

Why it’s great for dining, takeout & food delivery services

As Chase Ultimate Rewards points earned by the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card are easily redeemable for 1.25 cents each, the 3 points/dollar that the card earns on dining worldwide will see a cardholder effectively earn a 3.75% rebate on all dining, takeout, and food delivery spending.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card offers DoorDash DashPlus membership (worth $9.99/month) as one of its benefits as long as the membership is activated by 31 March 2022. When spending a minimum of $12, DashPass members do not pay a delivery fee at thousands of restaurants around the country and they get reduced service fees too. Savings are estimated to be in the region of $4 – $5 per order.

Good to know

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card card offers an annual $50 rebate on any hotel booking made through the Ultimate Rewards portal which, when used, effectively reduces the annual fee to just $45.

In addition, the Ultimate Rewards points that the Sapphire Preferred card earns can be transferred to numerous airline and hotel loyalty programs, cardholders receive primary auto rental cover when they pay for a rental using their card, and the trip protections/insurances that come with the card are the best insurances offered by any card costing just $95/year.

Find out more about the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card


US Bank Altitude GO Card

Annual Fee: $0 (zero)

Welcome Offer: Earn 20,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in eligible purchases in the 90 days immediately following account opening (more info)

Points earned by the US Bank Altitude GO card are worth $0.01 each when used with Real-Time Mobile Rewards to offset qualifying purchases so that makes the welcome offer worth $200.

Earnings:

  • 4 points/dollar on dining, takeout, and food delivery
  • 2 points/dollar on spending at grocery stores
  • 2 points/dollar on spending at gas stations
  • 2 points/dollar on streaming services
  • 1 point/dollar on spending in all other categories

Why it’s great for dining, takeout & food delivery services

As the point earned by the US Bank Altitude GO card are worth $0.01 each when used with Real-Time Mobile Rewards to offset qualifying purchases, the 4 points/dollar that the card earns for spending on eating out, takeout, and food delivery equates to a 4% rebate. That’s an excellent rate of return from a card that doesn’t charge an annual fee – all earnings are pure savings.

Good to know

There’s no limit to the number of points that can be earned and the US Bank Altitude GO card offers cardholders an annual $15 credit to be used on streaming service purchases.

Find out more about the US Bank Altitude GO card


The Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

Annual Fee: $550

The Welcome Offer: Earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after you spend $4,000 in the three months immediately following account opening (more info)

Ultimate Rewards Points can be redeemed for travel through the Chase travel portal at a value of 1.5 cents/point which makes the welcome offer worth $750.

Earnings:

  • 10 points/dollar on hotels and car rentals booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards*
  • 10 points/dollar on Lyft rides through 22 March 2022
  • 5 points/dollar on flights booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards*
  • 3 points/dollar for spending on travel that isn’t made through Chase*^
  • 3 points/dollar for spending on dining worldwide
  • 1 point/dollar for spending in all other categories

*After the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually

^Chase’s “travel” category is very broad so you’ll earn 3 points per dollar on everything from airfare, rental cars, and hotel bookings through to car parking, tolls, and ride-sharing services.

Why it’s great for dining, takeout & food delivery services

As the Chase Ultimate Rewards points earned by the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card are easily redeemable for 1.5 cents each, the 3 points/dollar that the card earns on dining will see a cardholder effectively earn a 4.5% rebate on all dining, takeout, and food delivery spending.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve Card offers DoorDash DashPlus membership (worth $9.99/month) as one of its benefits. When spending a minimum of $12, DashPass members do not pay a delivery fee at thousands of restaurants around the country and they get reduced service fees too. Savings are estimated to be in the region of $4 – $5 per order.

In addition, cardholders are given $60 in DoorDash statement credits in 2021 – that’s $60 of free food!

Good to know

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card offers a $300 rebate on all travel spending every year which effectively reduces the annual fee to just $150, the Ultimate Rewards points that it earns can be transferred to numerous airline and hotel loyalty programs, cardholders receive complimentary Priority Pass membership, a minimum of 1 year’s membership of the Lyft Pink program worth $199, and are given some of the best trip delay/cancellation/interruption protections offered by any card.

Find out more about the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card


Bottom line

When putting together a list of “best cards” it’s important to include a variety of options for people to choose from and I think that this list manages that. Some of the cards come with high annual fees but also offer very good earning rates, valuable loyalty currencies and a whole host of additional benefits and rebates to help offset those fees. The other cards come with no annual fees, good returns, and straight-up cashback which makes them very simple and economical to use. Hopefully, this list holds something for everyone.

Which is your favorite?

A Favourite Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is Chase’s incredibly popular entry-level travel rewards card which has recently been refreshed and made better than ever.

It currently comes with a welcome offer of 60,000 points after a successful applicant spends $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of card membership and it charges an annual fee of $95 in return for a list of good earning rates and benefits.

Our Favorite Benefits:

  • 5 points/dollar on most travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 5 points/dollar on Lyft rides through 22 March 2022
  • 3 points/dollar for spending on dining worldwide
  • 3 points/dollar for spending on select streaming services
  • 2 points/dollar for spending on travel worldwide
  • Redeem points at 1.25 cents each when booking travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • Annual $50 credit for hotels booked through Chase 
  • Primary auto rental cover
  • Trip delay reimbursement

Click for more details on the Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

Regarding Comments

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

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