Nowadays, traveling for work or business is almost a common practice. If you want to make the most of your travels, a travel rewards credit card is a must-have. Whether you travel every week or a few times per year, the benefits can really add up, meaning you can treat yourself to a well-earned holiday... no pun intended.
Travel rewards card range from no annual fee to an excess of $500, so it is important that you choose one that is right for you. The higher the annual fee, the more benefits and more complications regarding how to earn points. Check out below the top five travel rewards cards and see which one you should be applying for before your next trip.
Experience Luxury with American Express Platinum, Gold & Green
American Express (AMEX) is arguably the largest credit card company in the world, producing personal and business credit cards. They have recently introduced a travel rewards series, ranging from the highest tier, Business and Personal Platinum, to AMEX Gold. Each tier has its own respective annual fees and rewards.
AMEX Platinum Business Gets You Five Cents Back
If you travel for business frequently, consider this Platinum card. While it does have an annual fee of $595, it allows associates to travel in comfort, with airport lounge access and a $200 cover for incidentals. Your business can also earn up to 100,000 bonus points in the first 3 months! Furthermore, you can earn five points per each dollar that's spent on flights and prepaid hotels that have been booked through the American Express travel website.
AMEX Platinum Personal Has A Few Non-Card Perks
With an annual fee of $550, the AMEX Platinum Personal card is a high-end card and requires excellent financial credit to be approved. Upon approval, you will receive 60,000 bonus points, plus 5x rewards points for flights and hotels directly or through amextravel.com. Platinum Card-holders can enjoy an annual $200 Uber credit, as well as a $200 airline credit and complimentary lounge access worldwide. If you are active in the military or the spouse of someone who is, the annual fee will be waived.
AMEX Gold Is The Go-To For Most Travelers
With a more affordable annual fee of $250, the AMEX Gold Card offers many premium perks for half the cost. If you take advantage of the annual $100 airline credit for your chosen airline, the annual fee is effectively reduced to $150. Moreover, shopping in U.S. supermarkets and dining at selected restaurants worldwide will earn you 4x rewards points. You’ll also receive $100 in statement credit, meaning you can add on a few more bags at no extra cost.
Chase That Special Occasion With Sapphire Reserve
Chase Sapphire Reserve offers travelers some of the most competitive and premium services for its cardholders. The card doesn’t come cheap at $550 annually, however, if you’re always on the go, then this card should be among your top two. Holders can earn up to 50,000 bonus points when they spent $4,000 in the first three months.
Further benefits include access to over 1,000 airport lounges around the world, a private concierge service as well as special hotel deals and much more. Chase will also throw in a $300 statement credit annually to help cover travel costs.
Beach It With The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
A travel rewards card with a zero-dollar annual fee? There must be a catch! In fact, the only catch is that you will need a good or excellent credit score to be approved. After approval, the math is simple. Pay NO annual fee and earn up to 20,000 bonus points if you spend $1,000 in the first three months.
The earning is quite simple as well. Earn 1.25 miles for every dollar spent. Period. As an added bonus, your points will remain active for the life of the card, so there is no need to worry about losing those hard-earned points.
Get That Luggage Included On The MasterCard Black Card
The MasterCard Black Card is the top pick among the MasterCard travel range. The annual fee is a little high at $495, and its tough, matte black metal finish is sure to get you a second look. Card Ratings has recommended this card for those who want the most bang for their buck, on a premium level, of course. With the MasterCard Black Card, you can redeem your earned points for airfare, in which case you will receive $0.02 per point, or if you choose to redeem in cashback into your U.S. bank account, you’ll receive $1.50 per point.
The earning rate is perhaps the simplest of the premium cards, 1 point = one dollar. Perks of the card include a Priority Pass Select of more than 1,200 lounges worldwide, a hundred-dollar annual travel credit for extra baggage and upgrades, and a further $100 every five years reimbursement for the Global Entry Fee.