Best credit cards for Plastiq bill payments

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Plastiq is an online bill payment service that lets you pay almost all of your bills by credit card.  The usual fee is 2.5%, but they sometimes run promotions with reduced rates (especially for Mastercard payments).  It’s also possible to reduce the rate by earning Fee Free Dollars through friend referrals. Full details about Plastiq can be found in our guide: Complete Guide to Plastiq Bill Payments.

It is often worth paying Plastiq’s 2.5% fee in order to meet minimum spend requirements for a new card signup bonus.  It can also be worthwhile when the card is offering a bonus spend promotion or if you receive a good spend-linked card retention offer.  For example, if you call to cancel a card you may be offered a deal to keep your card, and that deal may be a bunch of points or cash back after spending a set amount.  Another situation where it can be worthwhile to pay for Plastiq is when cashflow is a problem.  Plastiq makes it possible to pay your bills with your credit card and then have until the credit card bill comes due to cover those charges (caution: this is very risky if you’re not sure that you can cover the charges).

Aside from the above ideas for when it makes sense to use Plastiq, another question is whether there are cards that earn rewards equal or better than 2.5% for Plastiq payments? In this post I’ll list the credit cards that make sense to use with Plastiq even when none of the above conditions apply.  These are the cards that make sense every day for Plastiq bill payments.

Restrictions by card issuer

Various card issuers and payment networks have imposed restrictions on Plastiq.  For example, you can use Plastiq to pay your mortgage with Mastercard or Discover, but not with Amex or Visa.  Overall, Mastercard & Discover are the least restrictive followed by business Visa cards.

Here’s a chart that summarizes the types of payments allowed:

The rules for consumer Visa cards are especially confusing.  Plastiq maintains details here.  The key details to note from Plastiq’s page are as follows:

  • The following categories of payments are safe: Rent, Utilities, Tuition (including daycares & camps), Taxes and government fees
  • Plastiq will prevent any payments that could incur cash advance treatment.  In other words, it can’t hurt to try using your Visa card for a payment because if there’s a chance of it being treated as a cash advance, Plastiq won’t let you finalize the payment.
  • Wells Fargo Visa credit cards are not affected.
  • Visa cards issued by Alliant, Navy Federal Credit Union, and USAA supposedly won’t earn rewards for Plastiq payments.

Best Cards for Plastiq Payments

The best cards for Plastiq payments are those that offer the best rewards and the fewest restrictions.  With that in mind, here are my favorites…

Bank of America Cards with Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards

If you have $100,000 on deposit with Bank of America and/or Merrill Edge or Merrill Lynch, they’ll give you a sort of bank elite status called Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards.  With this status, you get a 75% bonus on rewards earned with certain Bank of America credit cards.  Each has pros and cons for use with Plastiq…

Bank of America Cash Rewards (5.25%)

Bank of America Cash Rewards

Annual Fee: $0

Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
1%
Travel
3%
Dine
3%
Gas
3%
Grocery
2%
Shop
3%
Other
3%

Earning rate: 3% back on your choice of the following: gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drugstores, home improvement & furnishings (can choose a new category monthly). ⚬ 2% back at grocery stores & wholesale clubs ⚬ 1% back everywhere else. 2% and 3% rewards are capped at $2500 in combined purchases per quarter

Noteworthy perks: Up to 75% bonus for Preferred Rewards banking customers

This card earns 3% back on the category you choose, capped at $2500 in purchases per quarter.  With the Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards 75% bonus, this becomes 5.25% in rewards!

Readers have reported that Plastiq payments count towards the “online shopping” category.

Disadvantages:

  • $2500 cap per quarter
  • Card is usually issued as a Visa card which means there are many restrictions on what types of bills you can pay.  That said, some people have reported success obtaining a Mastercard version of this card.

BOA Business Advantage Travel Rewards World Mastercard (2.62%)

BOA Business Advantage Travel Rewards World Mastercard

Annual Fee: $0

Card Type: Mastercard World

Base
1.5X
(1.5%)
Travel

Earning rate: 1.5X everywhere; 3X for travel booked through BOA's travel center

Noteworthy perks: When you're a Business Advantage Relationship Rewards client, you can get up to 75% rewards bonus on every purchase you make. Your rewards bonus is based on your enrolled tier – Gold 25%; Platinum 50%; or Platinum Honors 75%

This Mastercard earns 1.5% back towards travel for all spend.  With the Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards 75% bonus, this becomes 2.62% in rewards.  Those with a Bank of America Premium Rewards card can transfer points to that card in order to cash out at full value without having to spend points on travel.

Disadvantages:

  • Since this is a business card, you must have Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards for Business.  To get this status, you must have $100K on deposit in Bank of America or Merrill Edge business accounts.

Bank of America Travel Rewards (2.62%)

Bank of America Travel Rewards

Annual Fee: $0

Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
1.5X
(1.5%)
Travel

Earning rate: 1.5X everywhere; 3X for travel booked through BOA's travel center

Noteworthy perks: Up to 75% bonus for Preferred Rewards banking customers

See also: Up to 2.625% back for timeshares, fortune tellers and more

This card earns 1.5% back towards travel for all spend.  With the Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards 75% bonus, this becomes 2.62% in rewards.  Those with a Bank of America Premium Rewards card can transfer points to that card in order to cash out at full value without having to spend points on travel.

Disadvantages:

  • Card is usually issued as a Visa card which means there are many restrictions on what types of bills you can pay.  That said, some people have reported success obtaining a Mastercard version of this card.

Bank of America Premium Rewards (2.62%)

Bank of America Premium Rewards

FM Mini Review: This card has best-in-class earnings for those with $100K+ invested with BOA. With that level of investment, you would earn 3.5X travel & dining and 2.62X everywhere else.


Annual Fee: $95

Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
1.5%
Travel
2%
Dine
2%

Earning rate: ⚬ 2X travel and dining ⚬ 1.5X everywhere else

Noteworthy perks: ⚬ $100 annual airline incidentals fee reimbursement ⚬ $100 Airport Security Statement Credit towards TSA Pre✓ ® or Global Entry Application fee, every four years ⚬ Up to 75% bonus for Preferred Rewards banking customers

This card earns 2% for travel & dining and 1.5% back for all other spend (like Plastiq).  With the Platinum Honors Preferred Rewards 75% bonus, the latter becomes 2.62% in rewards.

Disadvantages:

  • Card is issued as a Visa card.  I don’t believe there’s a Mastercard version available.

Discover It Miles: Year 1 (3%)

Discover it Miles - Double Miles your first year

FM Mini Review: Great card to get for its first year 3% cash back.


Annual Fee: $0

Card Type: Discover

Base
1.5%

Earning rate: 1.5 miles per dollar for all spend.

Noteworthy perks: ⚬ No foreign transaction fees ⚬ Redeem miles for travel or for cash back (1 cent per mile either way)

See also: Discover introduces a new card and a potentially VERY lucrative 1st year offer

The Discover It Miles card offers 1.5% cash back for all spend, but they double rewards after the first year.  This effectively makes the card a 3% everywhere cash back card in year 1.  This is a great choice when you consider that Discover cards (along with Mastercards) have the fewest bill pay restrictions.

Disadvantages:

  • After your first membership year with this card it is no longer useful.

Citi Double Cash Mastercard (2X)

Citi Double Cash Card

FM Mini Review: 2X rewards for all spend with no annual fee makes this card a winner. Earn 2X everywhere and redeem for the equivalent of 2% cash back or 2X ThankYou points. Pair with the Premier or Prestige card to make points transferrable to airlines.


Annual Fee: $0

Card Type: Mastercard World Elite

Noteworthy perks: 1X when you make a purchase + 1X when you pay for those purchases

The Citi Double Cash card offers 2% cash back for all spend.  Even better, cash rewards can be converted to ThankYou points.  Combine with the Citi Premier or Prestige card and you get the ability to transfer points to airline partners.  By transferring to select partners to book high value awards, it’s possible to average far better than 2% in rewards from this card.

Disadvantages:

  • If you plan to use cash rewards rather than transferring points to airline loyalty programs, then you’ll lose money by using Plastiq at 2.5%

Virgin Atlantic World Elite Mastercard

Virgin Atlantic World Elite Mastercard

Annual Fee: $90

Card Type: Mastercard World Elite

Base

Earning rate: 1.5X everywhere

Big spend bonus: Companion award ticket with $25K annual spend; 7,500 bonus points with $15K cardmember year spend + an additional 7,500 points with $25K cardmember year spend; Also: 25 tier point towards elite status per $2,500 spend (max 50 tier points per month).

See also: An analysis of the Virgin Atlantic 90K offer

This is a great card if you maximize the card’s spend bonuses.  By itself, the card earns 1.5 miles for all spend, but you can also pick up the following bonuses:

  • Companion award ticket with $25K annual spend.
  • 7,500 bonus miles with $15K cardmember year spend.
  • Additional 7,500 bonus miles with $25K cardmember year spend.
  • Also: 25 tier point towards elite status per $2,500 spend (max 50 tier points per month).

If you spend $2500 per month, you’ll earn 60,000 miles in 12 months plus a companion award ticket.  See: Virgin Atlantic World Elite Mastercard Deep Dive.

Amex Blue Business Plus (2X)

The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card

FM Mini Review: 2X rewards for all spend (up to $50K per year) with no annual fee makes this card a winner.


Annual Fee: $0

Card Type: Amex Credit Card

Base

Earning rate: 2X Membership Rewards points on all purchases, up to $50K spend per calendar year (then 1X thereafter). Terms apply.

Noteworthy perks: 0.0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months from account opening, then a variable rate, currently 13.24% - 19.24%, based on your creditworthiness and other factors as determined at the time of account opening. Terms Apply.

See also: The new king of everyday spend

This one earns 2X Membership Rewards points on all purchases up to $50K spend per calendar year (then 1X thereafter).  Membership Rewards points can be incredibly valuable for transferring to airline partners to book high value awards.

Disadvantages:

  • This is an Amex card and so the types of bills that can be paid are quite limited.

Amex Delta Platinum Business (1.5X + Elite Status)

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business Credit Card from American Express

FM Mini Review: Good choice for frequent Delta flyers who can make use of annual companion certificate


Annual Fee: $250

Card Type: Amex Credit Card

Base
Travel
Brand
Other

Earning rate: 3X Delta ⚬ 3X purchases made directly with hotels ⚬ 1.5X on purchases of $5K or more (max 50K extra miles per year)

Big spend bonus: Spend $25,000 in purchases on the Card in a calendar year and earn 10,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs); spend a total of $50,000 in eligible purchases on the Card in a calendar year and earn an additional 10,000 MQMs ⚬ Medallion Qualifying Dollar waiver (up to Platinum status) with $25K spend across one or more Delta cards (or $250K spend for Diamond status) ⚬ Terms and limitations apply.

Noteworthy perks: Domestic economy companion certificate (subject to taxes & fees) each year upon card renewal ⚬ Priority boarding ⚬ First checked bag free ⚬ Terms and Limitations Apply.

This is a good choice for those who pursue Delta elite status and have large bills ($5K or more) which can be paid by Plastiq.  That’s a pretty limiting combination, but if it fits you then with this card you can earn the following:

  • 1.5X on purchases of $5K or more (max 50K extra miles per year)
  • Spend $25,000 in purchases on the Card in a calendar year and earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs)
  • Spend a total of $50,000 in eligible purchases on the Card in a calendar year and earn an additional 10,000 MQMs
  • Medallion Qualifying Dollar waiver (up to Platinum status) with $25K spend.

Disadvantages:

  • This is an Amex card and so the types of bills that can be paid are quite limited.
  • Only optimal for large bill payments (over $5,000) where you’ll earn 1.5 miles per dollar.
  • This only makes sense for those chasing Delta elite status.

Radisson Rewards Premier Visa Signature Card (5X + free night)

Radisson Rewards Premier Visa Signature Card

FM Mini Review: With the elimination of Bonus Award Nights, this card is still good, but it is no longer an amazing "must have".


Annual Fee: $75

Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
Brand

Earning rate: ⚬ 10X at CC hotels ⚬ 5X elsewhere.

Big spend bonus: Free night at any US property after each $10K annual spend up to $30K.

Noteworthy perks: ⚬ Automatic Gold status ⚬ 40K bonus per year.

See also: Club Carlson rocks our world... Again

This card offers 5X for all spend plus a free night at any US property after each $10K annual spend up to $30,000 for a maximum of 3 free nights. Sadly, there aren’t very many desirable Radisson Rewards properties in the US, but there are a few (the Radisson Blu Chicago is particularly noteworthy).

I only recommend using Plastiq with this card in order to get to one of the three $10K thresholds for earning free night certificates.  The 5X points alone aren’t worth the 2.5% fee.

Disadvantages:

  • This is a consumer Visa card and so the types of bills that can be paid are quite limited.
  • Free night certificates are only good at properties in the United States.
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Greg The Frequent MilerChristianRosscoGeo@YQBJustin Recent comment authors

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Guest
ssss

Is anyone else having an issue with Plastiq sending checks late, or they don’t arrive?

Steven
Guest
Steven

Yes, last month, for the first time

ssss
Guest
ssss

Was the payment late or it didn’t arrive?

Steven
Guest
Steven

Never arrived

jon
Guest
jon

It depends on your valuation of IHG points, but I have been using the IHG premier for mortgage payments. I signed up for the 4x bonus points on all spend for 12 months and it is one of the only Chase mastercards that I’m aware of. Obviously after 12 months It will no longer be worth it…

Rick
Guest
Rick

Where can I find details on the IHG 4x bonus points promo?

JBC
Guest
JBC

I think there was an email sent.

Steven
Guest
Steven

Last year I tried my B of A cash rewards with Plastiq and It didn’t count as an internet purchase.

Justin
Guest
Justin

Something being overlooked in this post is Bank of America is unique in that rental payments code as travel so the Premium Rewards card can consistently get 3.5% back on those Plastic payments.

Christian
Guest
Christian

What business cards would you suggest for business rent payments?

Rossco
Guest
Rossco

The article shows business cards.

Christian
Guest
Christian

True, but American Express doesn’t work for business rent and the BOA card doesn’t interest me. That’s why I figured a more specific question might get more than the one option, and maybe something I missed since the FM crew is pretty sharp. I do appreciate your mentioning that though, since I’ve missed bigger things before this.

Rossco
Guest
Rossco

I should have figured that you meant that so I’ll apologize for my poor/short answer.

I just checked and my last business rent payment (albeit in October 2019) was using my Amex Blue Biz but I do feel like data points are constantly changed OR they just aren’t published because people don’t want to ruin their good thing.

Christian
Guest
Christian

Interesting. I’ve tried my Biz Platinum repeatedly to no avail. I just tried my personal Hyatt but it would have gone through as a cash advance. By default I’m using one of my UR cards or my AA Aviator Biz but I’m hoping for something better.

Geo@YQB
Guest
Geo@YQB

Here in Canada, Plastiq was charging 0% this morning for all payments made with an Amex card. ‘Promotion’ only lasted for a few hours. The Canadian personal platinum amex card is currently offering a 2x everywhere promotion and a statement credit promotion where points are worth 2 cents each. Gotta love getting 4% cash back on 50k in taxes! Love when the stars align.

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