Wells Fargo’s Propel no-annual-fee card: Cash back with bonus earnings for food delivery and select streaming services

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When it comes to the best rewards credit cards, it’s easy to overlook banks that issue only a few cards or those without massive welcome offers. If you do that, you could be missing out on a card that’s a good fit for your wallet — especially when it comes to cash back cards.

Take the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card. It earns triple points in a handful of popular categories like eligible streaming services, food delivery and gas stations. The card has no annual fee and comes with an introductory offer of 20,000 points (worth $200) after you spend $1,000 in the first three months of opening the account.

The Wells Fargo Propel card is no longer available for new applicants.

The information for the Wells Fargo Propel has been collected independently by Million Mile Secrets. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.   

This is an excellent opportunity to earn a few hundred dollars for a small amount of spending. And given that traveling is (mostly) out of the question right now, this may be a good time to focus on earning some good old-fashioned cash back.

Let’s look at a few reasons why you should consider getting the Wells Fargo Propel card.

You can apply for the Wells Fargo Propel card here.

It’s not hard to justify applying for a card that earns cash back with bonus categories for food delivery and streaming services. (Photo by Isabelle Raphael)

5 reasons to apply for the Wells Fargo Propel card

You want simple rewards

In many ways, there is no better reward than cash back because you don’t need to invest a lot of time when you’re ready to use it. Sure, miles and points can be exceptionally valuable for travel, but award charts and routing rules can also be exceptionally convoluted. Since we are all sticking close to home because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Propel card has bonus categories many of us are using right now — food delivery and streaming services — which earn 3 points per dollar spent.  In addition to its simplicity as a cash-back credit card, the Wells Fargo Propel card earns 3x points at restaurants, at gas stations, on transit and for ride-hailing services, hotels, flights and rental cars. All other purchases earn 1 point per dollar spent.

Each point is worth 1 cent and can be redeemed for cash back or statement credits. Through the Wells Fargo site you can also redeem your points, at the same value, for gift cards or travel. The minimum redemption amount is $25 (2,500 points).

You can’t meet higher spending requirements

One nice feature of this welcome offer is that you only need to spend $1,000 in the first three months after opening your account to earn the 20,000-point bonus. That averages out to spending approximately $333 a month. And the card’s bonus is worth $200, which is a 20% return on the minimum spending.

You have a tendency to drop your phone

I always pay my cell phone bill with my Ink Business Preferred Credit Card because it covers theft or damage of my phone for up to $1,000 per claim (up to three claims every 12 months) with a $100 deductible. That’s not bad for a card that only has a $95 annual fee, but the Propel card is better.

When you pay your cell phone bill with your Propel card, you’ll get coverage for up to $600 per claim and only a $25 deductible. You can receive a maximum of $1,200 per 12-month period and you get all that on a credit card with no annual fee. I don’t know of a cheaper way get insurance for your cell phone.

You should have a 5/24 strategy

Many of the best travel credit cards are issued by Chase. But you aren’t eligible for any Chase credit card if you’ve opened five or more cards from any bank in the past 24 months (not including most business credit cards). If the Wells Fargo Propel card is one of the first few cards you open, it could limit which Chase cards you’re eligible for. For that reason, I don’t recommend applying for this card if you’re under the Chase 5/24 or trying to get under it.

You already have the Wells Fargo Visa Signature card

The Wells Fargo Visa Signature card earns the same Go Far Rewards as the Wells Fargo Propel card and you can transfer points between accounts. That is advantageous because with the Wells Fargo Visa Signature your points are worth 1.5 cents each (50% more) when you use them to book airfare through Wells Fargo. In any year that you spend $50,000 or more on the card, that value jumps to 1.75 cents per point toward airfare booked with Wells Fargo.

That’s a nifty little trick to boost the value you get with your Propel card, and the Wells Fargo Visa Signature also has no annual fee. The biggest drawback to this strategy is that Wells Fargo only allows you to earn the welcome bonus from a Wells Fargo-issued card once every 15 months. You’ll have to wait a while between applications, but if you’ve had a Wells Fargo Visa Signature for 15+ months I wouldn’t hesitate to apply for the Propel.

The information for the Wells Fargo Visa Signature Card and the Ink Business Preferred card has been collected by Million Mile Secrets and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

Bottom line

The Wells Fargo Propel has a simple and valuable rewards structure. With its low minimum spending requirement and no annual fee, it’s easy to take full advantage of the value this card provides. You can even increase the return you get on your spending if you partner this card with the Wells Fargo Visa Signature. And the value of the card is increased even more if you spend a lot in bonus categories like food delivery or eligible streaming services.

You can read our full review of the Wells Fargo Propel card here.

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Meghan Hunter is an editor for Million Mile Secrets. She covers points, miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels and general travel. Her work has also appeared in The Points Guy.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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