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Review

2020 Review: Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa – Flat-Rate, Mobile Wallet Rewards

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Evan Zimmer By Evan Zimmer Jan 28, 2020 | Updated Jun 18, 2020
Our rating
Min. credit level: Good
Annual Fee: $0
Regular APR: 13.99%-25.99% Variable

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card is a general-use cash back credit card with a focus on utilizing mobile pay apps.

It offers 1.8% in cash rewards for the first 12 months on eligible mobile wallet purchases. During that time you’ll earn a flat rate of 1.5% cash back on all other purchases, and that’s what you’ll get for every purchase after the first 12 months.

There’s also an introductory bonus of $150 cash back for spending $500 in the first 3 months. Not a hard target to hit if you’re using the card generally, like for gas or groceries.

Like many other flat-rate cards the Cash Wise Visa provides a long introductory APR of 0% for 15 months, giving you plenty of time to pay off purchases or balance transfers. After that you’ll get the normal 13.99%-25.99% Variable APR.

Curious to see if this is the cash back card for you? Stick around to learn more and find out if it’ll complement your spending habits.

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card

Our rating
Min. credit levelGood
Details
Annual Fee$0
Regular APR13.99%-25.99% Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases
  • Enjoy 1.8% cash rewards on qualified digital wallet purchases, like Apple Pay® or Google Pay™, during the first 12 months from account opening
  • No category restrictions or sign ups and cash rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open
  • Get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with your Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • Select “Apply Now” to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions

Our Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars

We give the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card 5 out of 5 stars. What you see is what you get: a flat-rate cash back card, with a little extra when you use mobile wallets, plus a long time to pay off purchases and balance transfers.

Why We Like It

  • Flat rate of 1.5% on every purchase, except…
  • Earn 1.8% cash back for eligible mobile wallet purchases in the first year
  • Valuable signup bonus
  • No annual fee
  • Long 0% introductory period for purchases and balance transfers
  • Cell phone protection
  • FICO Score access

Why It Could Be Better

  • As far as benefits go, it’s a relatively sparse package
  • No bonus reward categories (after 12 months)
  • Minimum redemption amounts of $20 or $25, depending on method

Insider Advice: Getting the Most Out of Your Card

  • A simple way to earn: The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa provides a flat rate no matter where you spend, with no bonus categories to keep track of (except for mobile wallets). You can use it for all of your financial needs, and get rewarded for it.
  • Utilize Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Samsung Pay: To get the most value from this card, try to make purchases using mobile wallets for the first year to get that extra percentage.
  • Maximize your return on spend: Consider combining this card with other reward cards that offer bonus categories where you’ll earn more points or cash back. Use those cards when the categories apply, and use the Cash Wise Visa everywhere else.
  • Buy what you need to get the bonus: Use this card for routine expenses and necessities like gas and groceries. You’ll hit that requirement for the introductory bonus in no time, and earn cash back while doing it.
  • Use your extra time and new financial avenue: Take advantage of the long 0% intro APR to pay off purchases with no interest, or transfer a balance from a card with a higher interest rate to take some financial weight from your shoulders.

The Rewards

You’ll earn the most with this card when you utilize mobile wallets at stores that support them for your first year, at 1.8%. Otherwise, you’ll still get a pretty good amount of cash back (1.5%) on your purchases.

Earning

Spending Rewards
  • 1.8% cash back on purchases made in the first 12 months with eligible mobile wallets:
    • Apple Pay
    • Google Pay
    • Samsung Pay
  • 1.5% cash back on every other purchase
Introductory Bonus Offer
  • $150 cash back for spending $500 in the first 3 months

So you’ll earn a flat rate on everything you buy with no category restrictions, and an added 20% bonus when you make purchases using an eligible mobile wallet.

And speaking of bonuses, that extra cash back should be easy to get, as long as you use this card for purchases you would need to make anyway, like gas or groceries.

That’s easy money back in your pocket, just for buying things you would normally. And if you buy them while with a mobile wallet, that’s an extra little kickback to your bank account.

Read more

Best Cash Back Credit Cards

Redeeming

You have a few options when it comes to redeeming your cash back with Wells Fargo.

  • Statement credits for your credit card account (recommended)
  • Direct deposit into your Wells Fargo savings or checking account
  • Paper check, delivered to your home
  • Statement credits to your qualified Wells Fargo mortgage or loan principal balance
  • Withdraw cash with a Wells Fargo Debit or ATM card at Wells Fargo ATMs (in increments of $20)

With the exception of ATM withdrawals, redemptions are usually in $25 increments.

We recommend going with statement credits applied to your card account, because they’re a quick and easy way to get your reward value. But it’s nice to have other possibilities.

Like some other issuers, Wells Fargo gives customers who bank with them more options than those who don’t, providing redemption methods like direct deposit or statement credits to your Wells Fargo mortgage principal balance.

If you’re looking for cash you can find the nearest Wells Fargo ATM.

The Benefits

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa will come as either a Visa Platinum or Visa Signature card, probably depending on your starting credit limit.

Whichever version of the card you’re issued, you’ll also get a few benefits that Wells Fargo provides directly.

Learn More

Will I get a Visa Platinum or Visa Signature card?

With most cards that offer Platinum and Signature variations, if you’re approved for a credit limit below $5,000, you’ll receive the Visa Platinum version. If you’re approved for a credit limit of $5,000 or above, you’ll qualify for the Visa Signature card, and get access to a slightly more impressive selection of benefits. While Wells Fargo does not explicitly point that out, that’s how these cards tend to work.

Wells Fargo Benefits

  • Earn More Mall: Find offers to earn more cash back at select retailers in the Wells Fargo Earn More Mall.
  • Cell Phone Protection: Get protected with up to $600 in coverage from theft or damage when you use your Wells Fargo card to pay your monthly cellular telephone bill. You’ll be subject to a $25 deductible, but you’ll sleep better at night knowing your phone is protected.
  • Access to your FICO Credit Score: See your Experian-based FICO Score 9 to help monitor your credit.

Visa Platinum Benefits

  • Extended Warranty: Will double an eligible manufacturer’s warranty protection up to one additional year, for warranties of three years or less.
  • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver: Provides coverage for collision damage and theft of eligible rented vehicles, when you decline the rental company’s own insurance.
  • Travel and Emergency Assistance Services: A variety of services like medical and legal referrals, emergency transportation or ticket replacement, and pre-trip assistance.

Benefits like these are par for the course when it comes to most credit cards. The Signature version of the card tacks on a few more bells and whistles like more travel coverage.

Visa Signature Benefits

  • Purchase Security: If an eligible item you buy is lost or damaged, you can be reimbursed by sending in a claim.
  • Travel Accident Insurance: You, your spouse, and unmarried dependent children are insured against loss of life, limb, sight, speech, or hearing when traveling by common carrier.
  • Lost Luggage Reimbursement: Provides reimbursement to cover the cost of lost or damaged luggage under eligible situations.
  • Roadside Dispatch: Call 1-800-847-2869 for help while driving, for services like towing, tire changing, and fuel delivery.

The Terms & Fees

Purchase APR Balance Transfer APR Cash Advance APR
0% for 15 months, then 13.99%-25.99% Variable 0% for 15 months on qualifying balance transfers, then 13.99%-25.99% Variable See Terms
Annual Fee Foreign Transaction Fee
$0 3%
Balance Transfer Fee Cash Advance Fee
3% for 120 days, then 5% See Terms
Penalty APR Late Fee Returned Payment Fee
None Up to $37 Up to $37

The Cash Wise Visa has a relatively long 0% introductory APR for balance transfers and purchases. That means you’ll get a nice 15 months of wiggle room when it comes to paying things off. It also means you’ll be able to transfer a balance from another card, like one with a high interest rate, to give yourself some added time to get that balance down.

This card also has no annual fee, so you’ll be able to take advantage of all it has to offer without having to worry about how much it’ll cost every year.

The Bottom Line

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card provides a simple, straightforward way to earn rewards on every purchase. It’ll provide extra time to pay off big purchases, and helps if you need to pay off a balance from another card that’s accruing interest.

If you can pay via Google, Apple, or Samsung mobile wallet, you’ll earn an additional .3% cash back, bringing the total to a flat 1.8% rate for the first year. So if this is already part of your spending routine, this rewards card provides a simple way to earn a bit more with no added work. It’s not much extra, but if you’re a mobile wallet user it’s something to consider.

You should be able to easily qualify for the signup bonus if you use the card for routine spending, like gas and groceries. If you’re like me, it’s all too easy to rack up $500 from those two expenses alone in a mere three months.

You’ll get the standard redemption methods, but if you have a Wells Fargo debit or ATM card, you can also withdraw your rewards straight out of an ATM. That could be handy, and you won’t get it with most cards.

If you’re a spender with any of these qualities, and as long as you’re paying off your balances in a timely manner, why not earn a little back on your purchases for no additional annual cost?

How to Apply for the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa

To apply, click the button below and you’ll be directed to Wells Fargo’s website. From there, follow the prompts in order to fill out an application. They’ll ask for your personal and financial information, and perform a hard inquiry on your credit. If approved, you’ll be issued either the Platinum or Signature version of the card.

What Credit Scores Do You Need for the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa?

It will help to have FICO credit scores in at least the good range (670–739) in order to have the best chances of qualifying for this card. Obviously, the higher the better, and remember that approval depends on more factors than just credit scores; but it should be relatively easy to get approved as long as you’re somewhere in that range.

Qualifications and Requirements

  • Must be 18 to apply
  • Personal information: Name, date of birth, Social Security number, U.S. citizenship status, and potentially driver’s license number
  • Address and contact information: Home address, phone number, email address
  • Financial information: Total annual income, monthly mortgage or rent payment

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card

Our rating
Min. credit levelGood
Details
Annual Fee$0
Regular APR13.99%-25.99% Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases
  • Enjoy 1.8% cash rewards on qualified digital wallet purchases, like Apple Pay® or Google Pay™, during the first 12 months from account opening
  • No category restrictions or sign ups and cash rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open
  • Get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with your Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • Select “Apply Now” to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions
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Alternatives to the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa

The Cash Wise Visa isn’t bad, but there are plenty of other options out there. Here are some of the best.

Citi® Double Cash Card - 18 month BT offer

Our rating
Min. credit level Excellent
Details
Annual Fee $0
Regular APR 13.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer (Review) is one of the best flat-rate cash back cards out there. You’ll get 2% on every purchase, no matter where you like to spend.

It has a bit of a twist however; you’ll get 1% when you make a purchase, and the other 1% when you pay it off. Still, that makes it more rewarding than the Cash Wise, even if you’re taking advantage of the mobile wallet bonus.

But the Double Cash doesn’t come with a signup bonus, where the Cash Wise does. And it would take quite a lot of spending at the 2% rate to make up for that.

The Double Cash has no annual fee but the protection benefits are pretty meager. So if you’re more interested in netting some extra cash than protecting your phone, this card might be an option to consider.

Spending Rewards
  • 2% cash back for every purchase you make
    • 1% back when you make a purchase
    • 1% back when you pay for that purchase

With the Double Cash, there are other redeeming options beyond simple cash back that might be more rewarding. You could convert your rewards into ThankYou points, and from there, you might be able to find a good deal with Citi’s airline partners. That could give you a return on spend better than the 2% you’d typically get with this card, if you can get more than 2 cents per point.

  • Free FICO credit score: See your Equifax-based FICO Bankcard Score 8 on statements, online, and by mobile app.
  • Citi Concierge: Get restaurant suggestions, reservations, travel arrangements, shopping research, and more.
  • Citi Entertainment: Get preferred access and pre-sale tickets to events and experiences, from music to movies.
  • Balance Transfer APR: 0% for 18 months on Balance Transfers, then 13.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
  • Purchase APR: 13.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Earn cash back twice. Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
  • To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time.
  • Balance Transfer Offer: 0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months. After that, the variable APR will be 13.99% – 23.99%, based on your creditworthiness.
  • Balance Transfers do not earn cash back.
  • If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance (including balance transfers) by the due date each month.
  • There is a balance transfer fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 13.99% – 23.99% based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.

Citi is a Credit Card Insider advertiser.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

Our rating
Min. credit level Good
Details
(Rates & Fees)
Annual Fee $95
Regular APR 13.99–23.99% Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express (Review) offers the highest bonus category reward rate of the cards here, though it does have an annual fee. (Rates & Fees)

But for that fee, you’ll earn 6% at U.S. supermarkets and on select streaming services, and 3% at U.S. gas stations and transit. That’s a very high return on spend compared to the Cash Wise, even if it does restrict where you can earn. And if you use it frequently enough, you’ll be able to make that annual fee back no problem.

Or if you don’t feel like paying yearly, there’s the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express (Review) which has lower rewards, but won’t charge an annual fee. (Rates & Fees)

But why choose? You could use the Preferred card for groceries, gas, and streaming services, and use the Cash Wise for everything else to really maximize your earnings.

Spending Rewards
  • 6% cash back for:
    • U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 spent annually)
    • Select U.S. streaming services
  • 3% cash back for:
    • U.S. gas stations
    • Transit
  • 1% cash back everywhere else
Introductory Bonus Offer
  • $250 statement credit for spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
  • Amex Offers: Access a selection of discounts and extra cash back opportunities from a wide variety of vendors.
  • Lowest Hotel Rates Guarantee: If you book an eligible prepaid hotel room through Amex Travel and then find the same room being advertised online for a lower price, you can be refunded for the difference.
  • Entertainment Access: Purchase pre-sale tickets made exclusively available to American Express cardholders.
  • Return Protection: Get refunded on eligible purchases when the merchant won’t take them back.
  • Purchase APR: 0% for 12 months, then 13.99–23.99% Variable
  • Annual fee: $95
  • Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more). 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 12 months on purchases from the date of account opening, then a variable rate, currently 13.99% to 23.99%.
  • Plan It® gives the option to select purchases of $100 or more to split up into monthly payments with a fixed fee and no interest.
  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.
  • $95 Annual Fee
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

American Express is a Credit Card Insider advertiser.

Discover it® Cash Back

Our rating
Min. credit level Good
Details
Annual Fee $0
Regular APR See Terms

The Discover it® Cash Back (Review) is a pretty rewarding option to earn some cash back on your purchases.

You’ll earn 5% back in quarterly rotating categories, up to $1,500 spent per quarter, rather than having steady bonus categories. The 5% categories need to be activated each quarter.

Though it may be slightly more restrictive in where you can shop than the Cash Wise, it still has a much higher potential return on spend. And to up the ante, Discover will double the cash back you earn for your first year, making it that much more rewarding. Even your non-category purchases will be earning 2%, more than the Cash Wise.

The Discover it could provide you with more rewards, with the small caveat of rotating categories. But you could always combine the two, after your first year with the Discover it Cash Back: Use the Discover it Cash Back for the 5% categories, and use the Cash Wise card everywhere else.

Spending Rewards
  • 5% cash back in categories that rotate every three months, up to $1,500 spent per quarter, then 1% (activation required)
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus Offer
  • Cashback Match: New cardmembers get double cash back in the first year (awarded after the first year)

The 5% cash back calendar for 2020 is:

Quarter 5% Cash Back Categories
January – March Grocery Stores, Walgreens, CVS
April – June Gas Stations, Uber, Lyft, Wholesale Clubs
July – September Restaurants, PayPal
October – December Amazon.com, Target.com, Walmart.com
  • Free FICO credit score: See your TransUnion-based FICO Score 8 on statements, online, and by mobile app.
  • Cash at Checkout: When shopping at participating locations, you can get immediate cash back by charging an additional amount over your purchase for no extra fee.
  • Refer a Friend: Receive a statement credit bonus when you refer someone you know to apply for a Discover card (if that person is approved).
  • Free Social Security number alerts: Discover will let you know if your Social Security number appears on an extensive list of dark web sites.
  • Inquiry and new account alerts: Get notified about any new credit inquiries or accounts on your Experian credit report.
  • Purchase and Balance Transfer APR: See Terms for See Terms, then See Terms
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $0

The information related to Discover it® Cash Back has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.

U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card

Our rating
Min. credit level Good
Details
(Rates & Fees)
Annual Fee $0*
Regular APR 13.99% - 23.99%* Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

The U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card offers a bit of choice when it comes to how you can earn rewards.

You’ll be able to choose two categories quarterly (every three months) in which you’ll earn 5% back, and one everyday category to earn 2% in. That makes this card pretty flexible, while at the same time earning more than you would with Cash Wise. The everyday category could be gas or groceries, so you’d be able to earn on purchases you have to make anyways.

Or, use the cards in tandem. Choose two categories that you frequently spend in for the 5%, use the card for one everyday category for that 2%, and then use the Cash Wise with its mobile wallet bonus for everything else.

Spending Rewards
  • 5% cash back on your first $2,000 in combined net purchases each quarter on two categories you choose.
  • 2% cash back on your choice of one everyday category (like gas or groceries)
  • 1% cash back everywhere else
Introductory Bonus Offer
  • $150 cash bonus for spending $500 in the first 90 days after account opening
5% Cash Back Categories
Ground Transportation Fast Food Cell Phone Providers
Department Stores Home Utilities Select Clothing Stores
Electronics Stores Sporting Goods Stores Movie Theaters
Gyms/Fitness Centers Furniture Stores TV, Internet & Streaming Services
2% Cash Back Categories
Gas Stations Grocery Stores Restaurants
  • Free credit score: See your VantageScore 3.0 based on your TransUnion credit report.
  • Visa Signature Concierge: Call for personal assistance with travel bookings, dining reservations, business services, and more.
  • Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection: Get perks at select hotels like a $25 food and beverage credit and room upgrades when available.
  • Travel Accident Insurance: You, your spouse, and unmarried dependent children are insured against loss of life, limb, sight, speech, or hearing when traveling by common carrier.
  • Lost Luggage Reimbursement: Provides reimbursement to cover the cost of lost or damaged luggage under eligible situations.
  • Roadside Dispatch: Call 1-800-847-2869 for help while driving, for services like towing, tire changing, and fuel delivery.
  • Purchase Security: If an eligible item you buy is lost or damaged, you can be reimbursed by sending in a claim.
  • Balance Transfer APR: 0%* intro on BTs for 12 billing cycles on Balance Transfers*
  • Annual fee: $0*
  • Earn up to $550 cash back in the first year.
  • $150 bonus after spending $500 in eligible net purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.
  • 5% cash back on your first $2,000 in combined eligible net purchases ($100 per quarter) on two categories you choose. That adds up to $400 cash back!
  • 2% cash back on your choice of one everyday category, like gas stations or grocery stores.
  • 1% cash back on all other eligible net purchases.
  • No limit on total cash back earned.
  • 0% Intro APR* on balance transfers for 12 billing cycles. After that, a variable APR currently 13.99% – 23.99%
  • No annual fee*
  • Great Offer from U.S. Bank, a 2020 World’s Most Ethical Company® – Ethisphere Institute, February 2020

Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card

Our rating
Min. credit levelGood
Details
Annual Fee$0
Regular APR13.99%-25.99% Variable
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Earn a $150 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases
  • Enjoy 1.8% cash rewards on qualified digital wallet purchases, like Apple Pay® or Google Pay™, during the first 12 months from account opening
  • No category restrictions or sign ups and cash rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open
  • Get up to $600 protection on your cell phone (subject to $25 deductible) against covered damage or theft when you pay your monthly cellular telephone bill with your Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • Select “Apply Now” to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions

Did you learn what you needed to know about the Cash Wise Visa? Share this review with a friend, we’d appreciate it!

Best Cash Back Credit Cards

See them here!

For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, please click here.

At a glance

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa is a simple, flat-rate card that’ll net you 1.5% cash back on every purchase. It comes with a pretty standard benefits package and the added bonus of giving a little extra to customers that use mobile wallets.

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The information related to Discover it® Cash Back has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.

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