The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card is no longer offered. You can review our list of the best cash back credit cards to learn about other options.
Full Review of Wells Fargo Cash Wise Credit Card
Flat-rate cash-back rewards on all purchases
Introductory 0% APR offer and cash bonus
Cell phone protection
Below-average customer satisfaction
Minimum rewards amount required for redemption
- Flat-rate cash-back rewards on all purchases: The Wells Fargo Cash Wise card hardly offers the highest rewards rate. But earning and monitoring rewards is easy. They're delivered in cash rather than points. There are no required spending/higher reward categories. There's no need to register for rotating categories that have spending caps. Instead, you simply earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on every purchase you make. The card also offers an incentive to use a mobile app for purchases. That is, during the first 12 months after opening an account, you'll earn 1.8% when you use the card through a qualified mobile wallet, such as Apple Pay or Google Pay.
- Introductory 0% APR offer and cash bonus: The Wells Fargo Cash Wise card has an introductory 0% APR offer for 15 months from account opening for balance transfers and purchases. While that’s a fairly average offer for a card with no annual fee, it nonetheless gives you more than a year to transfer and pay down high-interest credit card balances or finance a major purchase without paying interest charges. The $150 cash bonus isn't as large as some bonuses offered by other cards, but Wells Fargo requires you to spend only $500 within your first three months to qualify for it. That should be easy for almost any cardholder to manage.
- Cell phone protection: If you use your Wells Fargo Cash Wise card to pay your monthly phone bill, you’ll get up to $600 in protection for your cell phone, subject to a $25 deductible. This is an unusual benefit for a no-fee card. However welcome this coverage is, it comes with caveats. While theft is covered, a simple loss of the phone is not. And damage that's covered must affect the phone’s functionality. That precludes repairs for cosmetic reasons or due to electronic or software failures that don't arise from physical damage. Finally, this is secondary coverage that kicks in after you've received benefits from any other insurance coverage (e.g., home or auto).
- Below-average customer satisfaction: Most people don't interact with their credit card issuer very often. But when you need to do so, it's often a matter of some urgency and even stress, and you want a satisfying experience. Unfortunately, that's less likely to be the case with Wells Fargo than with some other card issuers, according to the J.D. Power Credit Card Customer Satisfaction Study. Its 2022 survey places Wells Fargo with the lowest ranked companies for credit card customer service.
- Minimum rewards amount required for redemption: Many credit cards allow you to redeem rewards when you have accrued as little as one cent. However, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise card requires that rewards reach a minimum of $25 before they can be redeemed. And most cash redemption options, such as deposits into a checking or savings account, are redeemable in $25 increments only (so if you have, say, $45 in rewards, you could only deposit $25). While that's not a major problem, it is an inconvenience not found with some other cards.
Who This Card Is Best For
The Wells Fargo Cash Wise credit card is best for people who want a simple, straightforward rewards card with no annual fee, flat-rate cash back rewards, and no need to keep track of differing rates on certain purchases or to register for time-limited bonus rates on certain spending categories. You’ll earn 1.5% cash rewards on every purchase you make, with no limit on how much you can earn.
This card is also worth considering if you have no insurance on your cell phone, since it extends $600 in coverage provided you pay your cell phone bill with the Wells Fargo Cash Wise card. While there are conditions for the protection, including that it covers a total loss only when the phone is stolen, it still gives you some peace of mind about an expensive item that you carry constantly.
With a 15-month 0% APR offer on balance transfers and purchases, the Wells-Fargo Cash Wise is also a decent option if you’re looking to pay down debt acquired on another card or to make some new purchases that may take a while to pay off. You'll get 15 months without having to pay interest on either or both of the above.
Be aware that the 0% APR balance transfers come with a fee of at least 3% of the amount transferred (which isn’t uncommon). Stay on top of new purchases so you can be sure to pay off those charges by the end of the 0% APR period. As with all such offers, the regular APR kicks in when the promotion expires. Interest charges will immediately begin to cut into the savings you've enjoyed.
Wells Fargo Cash Wise One-Time Offer
While many credit cards provide one-time offers for new cardholders, these offers often require spending thousands of dollars to qualify. By contrast, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise card makes its cash bonus easy to earn, even for those who are relatively small spenders.
You’ll earn the card’s $150 bonus if you spend just $500 on purchases within the first three months of opening an account. That’s an attainable goal for most people who merely use their card for such essentials as gas and groceries.
Rewards Earning Details
With the Wells Fargo Cash Wise card, you'll earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on every purchase you make. If you spend $5,000 per year with your credit card, that means you'll earn $75 in cash rewards.
You can get a higher rate initially if you're prepared to load the card’s details into a mobile wallet, such as Apple Pay or Google Pay. You'll then earn 1.8% cash rewards during your first year as a cardholder. For example, if you simply use Google Pay to pay for $5,000 in transactions over the first year, you’ll earn $90 in rewards. That's $15 more than you'd get by pulling out your card to pay for those transactions ($90 - $75 earned at the 1.5% rate).
Rewards Redemption Details
The Wells Fargo Cash Wise card offers a range of redemption options, including:
- Cash: Use a Wells Fargo debit or ATM card to redeem your rewards for cash at Wells Fargo ATMs (in increments of $20).
- Direct deposit: Transfer your rewards to a Wells Fargo savings or checking account.
- Mortgage payments: Apply your rewards as a credit toward the principal balance on a Wells Fargo mortgage loan.
- Charitable donations: Donate rewards to select charities.
- Gift cards: Redeem your rewards for either electronic or physical gift cards.
- Travel: Redeem your rewards for travel arrangements, such as flights or hotels with GoFarRewards. No blackout dates apply.
Note that rewards deposited into a savings or checking account can be redeemed in $25 increments only and that Wells Fargo requires a minimum of $25 in rewards before they can be redeemed. That’s in contrast to other credit cards that essentially allow you to redeem rewards of any amount.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
To get the most value from your card, use it to pay for as many purchases as you can, including any categories for which you don't have another card that pays a higher rewards rate. If you immediately begin to use the card to pay for such staples as food, you should be able to spend in three months the $500 required to qualify for the $150 one-time offer (a 30% return on that spending).
If possible, sync your Apple Pay or Google Pay accounts with your Wells Fargo Cash Wise card to boost your cash rewards. By using a mobile wallet instead of the actual card, you’ll earn 1.8% cash rewards (rather than the normal 1.5%) during your first year as a cardholder.
If you're an average American consumer, and you use a mobile wallet, we estimate that you could earn more than $430 on this card within those first 12 months. Let's say that you use this card to purchase items including food, apparel, fuel, entertainment, and personal care products and services. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you'd spend around $16,000 in all of those categories combined over a year's time.
In addition, let's assume you take one trip per year that costs a total of $1,500, including airfare, hotels, ground transportation, and other miscellaneous expenses.
All told, you could earn a total of $465 on this card in that first year, including the 1.8% rewards and the first-year bonus of $150. If you used your card instead of the mobile wallet, you'd miss out on $53, and so earn about $412. After the first year, without either the bonus offer or the mobile-wallet bump up in rewards, you'd still earn a respectable $263 in cash back for that annual spending.
Wells Fargo Cash Wise Card's Outstanding Benefits
For a card with no annual fee, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise card has one standout benefit. That's the cell phone protection that it offers.
If you use your card to pay for your cell phone bill, you'll get up to $600 in coverage against theft or damage, subject to a $25 deductible.
- Auto rental collision damage waiver: Use your card to pay for your car rental, decline the rental company’s insurance, and get secondary coverage for theft or collision damage.
- Travel and emergency assistance: Access emergency travel services, including legal referrals, emergency transportation, translation services, and prescription assistance.
- Roadside dispatch: Get emergency roadside assistance for a tow or help changing a flat tire. You’ll have to pay a fee for any services provided, but you don't have to pay a membership fee.
- Travel accident insurance: Receive up to $150,000 in travel accident insurance when you use your card to pay for your entire fare on a common carrier.
If you're looking for a new credit card, it’s helpful to consider the issuer’s customer service. Unfortunately, Wells Fargo doesn’t have a great reputation when it comes to customer support.
The 2022 J.D. Power Credit Card Customer Satisfaction Study ranked Wells Fargo eighth out of the 11 card issuers it surveyed. Its score of 797 was well below the average of 814 for all issuers.
Customer service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can contact customer support through its online platform or by calling 1-800-642-4720.
Wells Fargo's array of security features is typical of most credit cards. It provides account monitoring for suspicious activity and will send you alerts if there are fraudulent transactions. You are covered by zero liability protection, meaning you’re not liable for unauthorized transactions.
If your card is lost or stolen, Wells Fargo offers emergency card replacement and cash disbursement.
The Wells Fargo Cash Wise card is a solid choice if you want a straightforward approach to earning rewards. It's a simple, 1.5% flat-rate rewards card with no annual fee that offers some appealing bonuses to new cardholders in the first 12 months. These include a $150 cash bonus for a mere $500 in spending, a 1.8% rewards rate if you use a mobile wallet such as Apple Pay or Google Pay, and a 15-month introductory 0% APR for both balance transfers and purchases (albeit with a balance transfer fee).
There's also the intriguing perk of coverage for cell phone damage or theft which comes automatically if you pay your monthly carrier bill with the card.
Please note that the Wells Fargo Cash Wise card is no longer available. Be sure to have a look at our list of the best cash back credit cards to learn about other options.