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Travel Cards

Travel Rewards Credit Cards

Compare travel credit cards from our partners and apply online
By helping you earn miles or points toward airfare, hotel stays, and more, travel rewards cards can be a great way to make your next trip more affordable. Whether you're a frequent business traveler wanting elite perks or a family looking to save, you should be able to find a travel rewards card that's right for you.


Best Travel Rewards Credit Card


Airline Miles for Beginners


Foreign Transaction Fee


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How to Choose a Travel Credit Card

Looking for a new travel credit card?

You have our sympathy. There is simply WAY too many offers to choose from now.

But how do you find the right one for you?

It turns out, you can narrow down your search dramatically by deciding which one of the bottom links matter the most to you:

Chase Sapphire Preferred Here's the deal: If you spend over $1,334 per month on your credit card, consider the Chase Sapphire Preferred. Chase Sapphire Preferred currently offers 40,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months from account opening (worth $500 toward travel rewards when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards). There is a $95 annual fee ($0 introductory annual fee for the first year).

Is it worth the $95 annual fee? Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Preferred here.

Tip: How to Meet Your Credit Card Minimum Spending Requirements

Earn Rewards for Travel

International Travel
For overseas travelers, consider using a credit card with no foreign transaction fee to help save money while abroad. Most credit cards have a foreign transaction fee of 3%.

Airline
If airfare is your biggest concern, look for an airline credit card to help you earn free flights. Several of these cards include great introductory deals, such as bonus miles, free flights or free checked baggage.

Hotel
To save on hotel expenses, consider applying for a hotel credit card. Special offers may include bonus hotel points and free hotel stays.

Gas
A gas credit cards can help stretch your budget. Read our guide on Summer Road Trips to see how using credit cards can help you save big.

Redeeming Points
Some travel rewards cards give you points or miles with a particular company’s frequent traveler program, such as United Mileage Plus or Hilton HHonors. Other cards give you points for the credit card issuer’s reward program which you can redeem with various companies.

Also consider how you would like to book your reward travel: some cards require you to book through the card issuer’s website, while others have more flexible options. Be sure to review the card's terms and conditions to see whether it has blackout dates or other restrictions on redeeming points.

Most travel and airline credit cards require very good to excellent credit to apply. Like most rewards cards, travel and airline credit card offers tend to charge higher interest rates compared to other types of credit cards, so if you don't plan on paying your balance in full each month, consider a low interest credit card instead.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Chase. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by Chase. This site may be compensated through the Advertiser's affiliate programs.

Best Credit Cards for International Travel

When you travel outside of the country, paying by credit card gets a bit complicated. Most cards charge a foreign transaction fee that adds about 3% to your purchases. If you travel internationally often, these fees really start to add up. Be ...


Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
Read ReviewApply for Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
At Chase's Secure Site
  • Earn 40,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $500 in travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees, plus chip-enabled for enhanced security and wider acceptance
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading frequent travel programs at full value - that means 1,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points equal 1,000 partner miles/points
  • Premium Travel and Purchase Protection Benefits, including Trip Cancellation/Trip Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Purchase Protection and more
  • 24/7 direct access to dedicated customer service specialists
  • Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
Travel Rewards Benefit: 2X points per dollar spent on travel. 1:1 point transfer to leading frequent travel programs at full value - that means 1,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points equal 1,000 partner miles/points
Airline Rewards: 1:1 point transfer to leading frequent travel programs at full value - that means 1,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points equal 1,000 partner miles/points
Our Review: The Chase Sapphire Preferred card offers a very generous point bonus and extra travel rewards to those with excellent credit. Keep in mind, the card does have a $95 annual fee. Read on to see if the Sapphire Preferred is worth it... Read full review
Intro APR for PurchasesIntro APR for Balance TransferRegular APRAnnual Fee
N/AN/A
15.99% Variable
Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95

Discover it Miles
Read ReviewApply for Discover it Miles
At Discover's Secure Site
  • No annual fee & unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar you spend on purchases. 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months-then a variable purchase APR applies, currently 10.99% - 22.99%.
  • Exclusive Double Miles Offer: At the end of your first year-when other Miles cards charge an annual fee-Discover doubles all the Miles you've earned.*
  • 100 Miles = $1 value. Redeem Miles in any amount toward travel purchases on your statement. Or get cash as a direct deposit to your bank account.*
  • Discover pays you back for your in-flight Wi-Fi fees-up to $30 a year-with an automatic statement credit.*
  • Free FICO® Credit Score on your monthly statements, on mobile app and online.*
  • 100% U.S. based service at your dedicated phone number-day and night.
  • Free overnight shipping of replacement cards to any U.S. street address at your request. And you're never responsible for unauthorized purchases on your Discover card.*
  • *See rates, rewards, free FICO® Credit Score terms and other info by clicking "Apply Now." See complete Discover it® Miles details.
Introductory Bonus Airline RewardsAirline RewardsTravel RewardsBonus Airline RewardsNo Expiration on Rewards$0 Fraud Liability
Travel Rewards Benefit: 1.5x Miles on every dollar you spend on purchases. 100 Miles = $1 value. Redeem Miles in any amount toward travel purchases on your statement. Or get cash as a direct deposit to your bank account.*
Our Review: Discover it Miles credit card rewards users with 1.5x miles and no annual fee (a rarity among travel credit cards). Even more appealing, as a promotion, the card will double the miles you earn at the end of your first year... Read full review
Intro APR for PurchasesIntro APR for Balance TransferRegular APRAnnual Fee
0% for 12 months
10.99% for 12 months
10.99% - 22.99% (Variable)
$0

Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express
Read ReviewApply for Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express
At American Express' Secure Site
  • Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn free nights at over 1,100 hotels and resorts in nearly 100 countries with no blackout dates.
  • Some hotels may have mandatory service and resort charges.
  • Earn up to 5 Starpoints on purchases at participating SPG hotels.
  • That's 2 Starpoints for which you may be eligible as a Card Member in addition to the 2 or 3 Starpoints for which you may be eligible as an SPG member.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $65.
  • Terms and Limitations Apply.
Introductory Bonus Hotel RewardsAirline RewardsHotel RewardsTravel RewardsBonus Airline RewardsNo Limits on RewardsEventsCar Rental InsuranceExtended Warranty Purchase ProtectionReturn ProtectionTravel Accident Insurance$0 Fraud Liability
Airline Rewards: Transfer Starpoints to more than 30 airline frequent flyer programs, mostly on a one-to-one basis.
Hotel Rewards: Earn free nights at over 1,100 hotels and resorts in nearly 100 countries with no blackout dates. (Some hotels may have mandatory service and resort charges.)
Our Review: A favorite among many travel bloggers, the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card offers travel rewards and American Express customer service for a $65 annual fee. The sign-up bonuses and 1:1 point transfer to other frequent traveler programs make this card a worthy credit card for travelers to consider, even if you don’t stay exclusively at Starwood hotels... Read full review
Intro APR for PurchasesIntro APR for Balance TransferRegular APRAnnual Fee
NoneNone
15.24% - 19.24% variable
$0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $65

The Platinum Card from American Express
Read ReviewApply for The Platinum Card from American Express
At American Express' Secure Site
  • Earn 40,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Up to a $200 Airline Fee Credit Annually.
  • To receive the statement credit, you need to select a qualifying airline.
  • There are no foreign transaction fees with purchases made on your Platinum Card.
  • Platinum Card Concierge is your personal resource to help secure a last minute restaurant reservation, or shop for a hard-to-find gift.
  • Terms & restrictions apply.
Introductory Bonus Reward PointsAirline RewardsPoint RewardsTravel RewardsNo Pre-Set Spending LimitConciergeEventsExtended WarrantyPurchase Protection Return ProtectionTravel Accident Insurance$0 Fraud LiabilityIdentity Theft Assistance
Airline Rewards: Up to a $200 Airline Fee Credit Annually. To receive the statement credit, you need to select a qualifying airline.
Our Review: The American Express Platinum Card is in our opinion, one of the most prestigious rewards cards on CreditDonkey. It is also one of the most expensive cards we have reviewed, with an annual fee of $450. In exchange for the $450 annual fee, the Platinum Card offers a number of travel benefits and a rewards program... Read full review
Card TypeAnnual Fee
Personal Charge Card
$450

American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card
Read ReviewApply for American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card
At American Express' Secure Site
  • Earn 25,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $2,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Earn Points Faster: 3X points for flights booked directly with airlines and 2X points at US gas stations & US supermarkets, 1X points on other purchases. Terms and limitations apply.
  • With the Membership Rewards® program, you can use points for rewards from over 500 leading brands in travel, gift cards, merchandise, or entertainment.
  • You can also transfer points to our selection of frequent traveler programs.
  • With The Hotel Collection, you can get up to a $75 hotel credit on qualifying charges any time you use your Card to book a stay of at least two consecutive nights.
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year of Card Membership, then $175.
  • Terms and Restrictions Apply.
Introductory Bonus Reward PointsAirline RewardsPoint RewardsTravel RewardsGas RewardsGrocery RewardsNo Pre-Set Spending LimitEventsCar Rental Insurance Extended WarrantyPurchase ProtectionBaggage InsuranceTravel Accident Insurance$0 Fraud LiabilityRoadside Assistance
Airline Rewards: Earn 3X points for flights booked directly with airlines
Our Review: The American Express Premier Rewards Gold card offers 3x points for flights booked directly with airlines and 2x points at US gas stations and US supermarkets. In exchange, the Premier Rewards Gold card charges an annual fee of $175. Is the annual fee worth it? Read on to see if you can justify the annual fee... Read full review
Card TypeAnnual Fee
Personal Charge Card
Introductory annual fee of $0 for the first year, then $175

Travel Rewards Benefits

Travel rewards credit cards not only help you save money on expenses, such as flights and hotel rooms, they also usually offers points (or miles) that can be redeemed toward other discounts or benefits. A travel-focused credit card might also provide additional benefits when it is used to pay for travel expenses.

The majority of travel rewards credit cards work like regular rewards cards, with cardholders earning a certain number of points for each dollar spent on purchases using the card. The difference is that cards focused on travel rewards usually offer bonuses, either when you use them to pay for travel-related expenses, or when you redeem points for travel savings. Some examples may include:

  • Some cards let you earn double or even triple points or cash back for each dollar spent on airfare or gas, in addition to awarding bonus points when you sign up.

  • Other possibilities include receiving credits to cover incidentals such as baggage fees, access to special lounges at airports, or concierge services to help trip planning.

  • Some programs may require fewer points to redeem award flights or hotel stays, particularly if you book through the card issuer’s travel website.

A Focus on Business

Many credit cards aimed at businesspeople also emphasize travel rewards, as work-related travel remains common despite today’s challenging economy:

  • You may be able to receive a discounted companion airplane ticket when purchasing one at a high enough fare rate.

  • You may also be able to easily transfer points and miles between your credit card and particular frequent flyer programs.

  • Other benefits can be perfect for business travelers, including reduction or elimination of foreign transaction fees and additional car rental insurance.

Corporate Tie-ins

Some cards bear the name of a travel-related company, such as an airline or hotel chain, and provide even better bonuses for purchases at that particular business. Potential perks include:

  • Some cardholders may be able to take advantage of special benefits or avoid certain fees when booking with the selected airline or hotel chain, in addition to earning bonus points or miles.

  • Blackout dates or other restrictions may not apply when booking with the appropriate card.

  • Just remember to be aware that some of the benefits of these cards are only awarded at the particular company’s properties or flights.


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    By Leah Norris - Tips
    Thinking of taking a trip around the world? It’s not cheap to travel anywhere these days. The cost of airfare alone can be enough to make you think twice about traveling internationally to one location, let alone take a multi-country journey. ...

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    Planning a vacation? Hotel and transportation costs are high enough without the added costs of food, entertainment, and attractions. But, there are some easy ways to save money during your trip without sacrificing experience.

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    We’re all taking more photos than ever. But what are we doing with them? Are they forever stuck in our phones or in the cloud somewhere? Photo sites make it easy to pull out your favorite images and turn them into printable keepsakes and gifts. ...
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    Whether you're a seasoned cruiser or you prefer to keep your feet firmly on land, here are 23 things that might surprise you about the cruise industry.
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    Why Traveling is Good for You

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    We all need to get away sometimes. And if the only thing standing between you and your next trip is a good excuse, start packing because we've got you covered. Here are 23 reasons why traveling is good for you, on both a personal and ...
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    Best Cities to Visit Solo

    By Lauren Ward - Tips
    Traveling alone comes with plenty of perks: you can create an itinerary to suit your own interests and preferred pace and you’re completely free of anyone else’s whims. In that spirit, we’ve compiled a list of the best cities in the country to ...

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About CreditDonkey®
CreditDonkey is a credit card comparison website. We publish data-driven analysis to help you save money & make savvy financial decisions.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed on this page are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

†Advertiser Disclosure: The card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which CreditDonkey receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). CreditDonkey does not include all companies or all offers that may be available in the marketplace.

*See the card issuer's online application for details about terms and conditions. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. However, all information is presented without warranty. When you click on the "Apply Now" button you can review the terms and conditions on the card issuer's website.

CreditDonkey does not know your individual circumstances and provides information for general educational purposes only. CreditDonkey is not a substitute for, and should not be used as, professional legal, credit or financial advice. You should consult your own professional advisors for such advice.