Do you qualify for annual fee waivers?
Some institutions offer to waive the annual fee if you spend enough on your card each year, or if you have a home loan or lots of savings with the bank. If your card spend is more than $5000-$10,000 a year you may be able to choose a card with all the benefits you want and avoid the annual fee. But make sure you only use your card to make purchases you were going to make anyway. Spending money for the sake of reducing fees or earning rewards points is false economy.