GOBankingRates

Best Travel Credit Cards

Travel credit cards aren’t just for business travelers or jet setters. Anyone can apply for a credit card that offers travel rewards and reap benefits like free flights, roadside assistance, rental car insurance or zero foreign transaction fees. Rack up points on these travel credit cards for everyday purchases, then redeem them for flights or other travel rewards.

Check out the following table to see the features of each card at a glance. Note that none of the cards charges a foreign transaction fee, except for Blue Sky from Amex, which charges 2.7 percent of each transaction after conversion to U.S. dollar. Then, review the details for each credit card so you can apply for the credit card that best fits your lifestyle.

11 Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards
Credit Card Annual Fee Starting APR Top Rewards Earning Rate Bonus Offer How to Apply
Discover it Miles $0 12.24% to 24.24% 1.5 unlimited miles on every $1 spent
All miles earned are matched at end of first year
None Learn More
Premier Rewards Gold Card from Amex $0 first year, then $195 Pay balance in full every month 3 points for flights booked directly with airlines
2 miles at U.S. restaurants, gas stations and supermarkets
1 points on other purchases; $100 airline fee credit
25,000 points after spending $2,000 on purchases within first 90 days Learn More
BankAmericard Travel Rewards Card $0 16.24% to 24.24% 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all purchases 20,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 within first 90 days

Introductory 0% APR for first 12 billing cycles

Learn More
Capital One Venture Rewards Card $0 first year, then $95 14.24% to 24.24% 2 miles for every dollar spent on purchases 50,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 within first 90 days Learn More
U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Card $0 first year, then $49 15.24% to 25.24% 1 point per $1 spent in net purchases
2 points on category you spend the most on
2 points on qualifying charitable donations
20,000 miles after spending $2,000 within first 120 days Learn More
  Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard $0 first year, then $89 17.24% to 24.24% 2 miles on all purchases
5% miles back to use toward your next redemption every time you redeem
40,000 miles after spending $3,000 within first 90 days Learn More
Chase Sapphire Preferred $0 first year, then $95 17.24% to 24.24% 2 points on all travel
2x points on restaurants
1 point per $1 on all other purchases
50,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 within first 90 days Learn More 
Citi ThankYou Premier Card $0 first year, then $95 15.74% to 24.74% 3 points for travel, including gas
2 points for dining/entertainment
1 point for all other purchases
None Learn More
  The JetBlue Plus Card $99 13.24% to 26.24% 6 points on JetBlue Purchases
2 points at restaurants and grocery stores
1 point on all other purchases
30,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in first 90 days Learn More
Blue Sky from Amex $0 18.49% to 23.49% 1 point for each dollar spent on eligible purchases None Learn More
  Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Card $75 13.49% to 20.49% 3 miles for every $1 spent directly with Alaska Airlines and Virgin America purchases
1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
Buy one ticket, pay only taxes and fees on one ticket after spending $1,000 within first 90 days Learn More

11 Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards

When considering applying for a travel credit card, wait to fill out a credit card application until you’ve checked your credit report to make sure it’s in good shape. You’ll want to be able to easily qualify for the top travel card offers. Here’s a closer look at the best travel rewards credit cards available now:

Discover it Miles

©GOBankingRates

With the Discover it Miles travel card, pay no interest on purchases for the first 14 months. In addition, the card offers late payment forgiveness with no fee for your first late payment. And Discover will never raise your APR for paying late or charge you an over-limit fee.

Rewards:

Perks: 

See: Why American Express and Discover Credit Cards Aren’t Accepted Everywhere

Premier Rewards Gold Card from Amex   

©GOBankingRates
                     

You won’t accrue interest with this card because you pay off your balance each month, and you get the flexibility of no preset spending limit. Use the points you earn to book travel on the American Express travel site. And if you’re loyal to one airline, use the card to charge baggage fees and other incidentals when you fly on that airline, and you’ll get up to $100 reimbursement in statement credits each year.

Rewards:

Perks: 

American Express Review: Compare 9 Different Travel Rewards Cards

Bank of America Travel Rewards Card

©GOBankingRates

This travel rewards credit card works best for Bank of America checking or savings customers, who get a 10 percent earned point bonus. And BofA Preferred Rewards clients could increase the bonus to 25 to 75 percent. Additionally, cardholders can enjoy using their bonus points on any airline or any hotel with no blackout dates.

Rewards:

Perks:

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

©GOBankingRates

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card lets you use your points on any airline, hotel or car rental website or app, leaving your options wide open. Use this travel rewards credit cards to make a purchase and redeem your miles as a statement credit toward the cost of that purchase. Plus, you can pick your own monthly due date and payment.

Rewards:

Perks:

U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Card

©GO

As its name implies, the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Card gives you flexibility when redeeming points for flights. Fly on more than 150 airlines with no blackout dates. You also get an allowance of up to $25 for baggage fees and in-flight purchases.

Rewards:

Perks:

Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard

©GOBankingRates

The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard works well if you’re not sure whether you want to redeem your miles for travel or cash because it lets you opt for travel rewards or statement credits. As a cardholder, you’ll also receive free access to your FICO credit score and alerts.

Rewards:

Perks:

Chase Sapphire Preferred

©GOBankingRates

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card has attractive perks for travelers, like trip insurance and rental car coverage. Get 25 percent more value when you book flights, hotel rooms, cruises and car rentals through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Unlike many other travel cards that pay after your own auto insurance, Chase offers primary rental car coverage.

Rewards:

Perks: 

Citi ThankYou Premier Card

©GOBankingRates

The Citi ThankYou Premier Card lets you earn points to travel when you want and on the airline you want with no blackout dates, as long as you book through the ThankYou Travel Center. No limit applies to the amount of ThankYou points you can earn, and points never expire. Plus, Points Transfer lets you transfer your qualifying and available ThankYou Points to other participating airline loyalty programs with no fee.

Rewards:

Perks:

Find Out: What You Should Know About Citibank Virtual Credit Cards

The JetBlue Plus Card

©GOBankingRates

In addition to earning TrueBlue points that never expire, the JetBlue Plus Card rewards you with VIP treatment if you spend more than $50,000 annually. You’ll earn TrueBlue Mosaic benefits for a year, including free checked bags, expedited security screening and priority boarding. Although this travel card has a $99 annual fee, you’d have to take 30 JetBlue flights in a year to qualify for TrueBlue Mosaic without it.

Rewards:

Perks:

Blue Sky from Amex

©GOBankingRates

Carry a balance with interest or choose to pay in full each month with Blue Sky from Amex. Unlike many other travel credit cards, Blue Sky does charge a fee for foreign transactions; expect to pay 2.7 percent after conversion to US dollars. Even with the fee, the generous travel-related perks might make this card a good option.

Rewards:

Perks:

Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Card

©GOBankingRates

The Alaska Airlines Visa Signature credit card is best for loyal Alaska Airlines and Virgin America flyers because of the extra miles earned for purchases from either of those airlines. You can apply online for this airline credit card, book your next flight and start earning miles today. In addition, you can redeem miles for flights on Alaska Airlines’ range of airline partners.

Rewards:

Perks:

Up Next: Best Credit Card Offers, Deals and Bonuses

GOBankingRates is a personal finance and consumer interest rate website owned by ConsumerTrack, Inc., an online marketing company serving top-tier banks, credit unions, and other financial services organizations. Some companies mentioned in this article might be clients of ConsumerTrack, Inc., which serves more than 100 national, local and online financial institutions. Rankings and roundups are completely objective, and no institution, client or otherwise, paid for inclusion or specific placement. 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 the companies included in the article. All fees and rates are subject to change at the issuers’ discretion, and some bonus offers might no longer be available on the issuers’ websites, depending on how you access the web page.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. 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 American Express.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. 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 American Express.