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Credit cards that do not charge an annual fee for membership are called no annual fee cards. Usually premium credit cards like gold and platinum visa and master cards or world credit cards come with a high annual fee, if you want to sign up for a membership. Generally, the greater the reward program on your credit card, the higher fees you will be charged. Reward programs like air miles and hotel stays will have higher membership fees and programs like cash backs and point systems cost you less. The whole idea of having these rewards and paying a high fee for it does not make sense because it doesn't give you the profit you are looking for in the card. The best credit cards are the ones that offer these reward programs and do it for free of cost.
Another important part of annual fee is that the amount you pay to get a credit card depends a lot on your credit score. If your credit score is anywhere above 650† then you are in the low credit risk zone, that is, you are considered to be a safe investment. If your credit score is lesser than that, then you will have to pay a relatively high annual fee because according to the credit card companies they will be running the risk of providing you the credit. So if you have a low credit score when you get a credit card, it is okay if you have to pay the initial annual fee, you can use the card to improve your credit score. Once you come to the safety zone, you can then negotiate a with your credit card company to cancel your annual fee.
If you consider paying an annual fee as worthless, then another option for you to consider is the debit card facility available through your bank. These cards usually do not have annual fee of any sort and they give you the same flexibility of a credit card. Only difference is you will not be getting a credit, but will be able to only use the amount in your account.
Nowadays though, almost all basic or standard credit cards are offered for no annual fee, which will definitely help people with bad credit to improve their scores. Basic cards just work fine, for starters and once you get used to credit cards, you can qualify for reward programs from your credit card companies.