If you’re a frequent flyer, vacationer, or just want to find good deals, a travel rewards credit card can help you earn great benefits and rewards.
What is a Travel Rewards Credit Card?
Travel rewards credit cards are a kind of credit card that offers you points or miles in exchange for spending. These points or miles can then be redeemed for travel-related items.
Occasionally, these cards can come with travel-related perks, such as free checked bags, priority boarding, and other deals and discounts.
What are the Different Types of Travel Rewards Credit Cards?
There are many different types of travel rewards credit cards, but some of the most popular include:
Airline Credit Cards
Airline credit cards are co-branded with a specific airline and typically allow cardholders to earn points or miles that can be redeemed for flights with participating airlines and possibly other travel-related items like car rentals and hotels. These cards also often come with several travel-related perks.
The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®, for example, offers benefits such as the first checked bag free and preferred boarding.
Business Travel Rewards Credit Cards
Business travel rewards cards are designed for both business owners and employees and offer points or miles that can be redeemed for travel-related items. The CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® is both an airline and business travel rewards credit card. With this card, you can earn 2 miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and gas stations. The card also offers flight perks, including first checked bag free and preferred boarding.
How do Travel Rewards Credit Card Points and Miles Work?
Travel rewards credit cards typically offer points or miles for making purchases with the card. Some of these cards offer additional points or miles on specific purchase categories like, for example, restaurants or gas stations. These points or miles can then be redeemed for travel expenses, such as airfare, hotels, rental cars, and more.
How to Redeem Points or Miles
A common way to redeem points or miles is through your credit card issuer’s or its partner’s portal.
For Citi credit cards that earn ThankYou® Points, you can go to www.thankyou.com to redeem your points. Once there, you can learn how to redeem your points.
Citi cards that participate in the American Airlines AAdvantage program let you redeem your miles at the AAdvantage miles portal.
Some rewards programs also allow you to redeem your points or miles for gift cards or merchandise.
What are Some of The Benefits of Travel Rewards Credit Cards?
There are different benefits depending on the travel rewards credit card. Here are examples of some benefits for a few travel rewards credit cards.
Hotel Room Discounts
With the Citi Premier® Card, you can enjoy $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, through thankyou.com, once per calendar year.
An Enhanced Airport Experience
With the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® you can enjoy Admirals Club® Membership, including access to nearly 100 Admirals Club® and partner lounge locations worldwide. This benefit can help you relax before your flight and enjoy complimentary food and drinks. You’ll also receive priority check-in and priority screening (when available), as well as priority boarding for you and up to eight travelers on the same reservation.
Discounted In-Flight Drinks, Snacks, and Meals
The CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard is a business travel rewards credit card that offers 25% savings on inflight food and beverage purchases when you use your card on American Airlines flights. This benefit can help you save money on your vacation expenses.
How to Make the Most of Travel Rewards Credit Cards
If you want to make the most of your travel rewards credit card, here are a few things you can do:
Meet the Bonus Requirements
Many travel rewards credit cards offer a bonus when you open an account. These bonuses usually require you to spend a certain amount of money within the first few months of opening your account. If you meet the spending requirements, you can earn additional points or miles.
Take Advantage of Spending Categories
Many travel rewards credit cards offer additional points or miles in specific spending categories like airfare, hotels, or restaurants. If you want to earn the most points possible, it’s important to understand how your card’s points or miles work and use your card in the categories that offer additional points or miles.
Be Aware of All Fees Before Applying
Some travel rewards credit cards come with annual fees, foreign transaction fees, and other charges. It’s important to be aware of all the fees before you apply for a card so that you can make sure it’s the right fit for your financial situation.
Choose the Right Card for You Based on Your Needs and Preferences
There are a lot of different travel rewards credit cards on the market, so it’s important to choose the right one for you. Consider factors like annual fees, bonus offers and benefits when you’re comparing cards.
Travel Rewards Credit Cards: Bottom Line
A travel rewards credit card can be a great way to make the most out of your spending. If you want to make the most of your travel rewards credit card, be sure to meet the bonus requirements if offered, maximize your potential points or miles earned, and know your card’s terms and conditions.
Travel Rewards Credit Cards: Frequently Asked Questions:
1. Can I use a travel rewards credit card for anything?
Most travel rewards credit cards can be used for any purchase, including airfare, hotels, and rental cars. Some cards also offer additional points or miles in specific spending categories, like dining or travel.
2. What is the difference between travel rewards credit cards and other credit cards?
A travel rewards credit card is a type of credit card that offers rewards and benefits that are catered for travelers. These cards may offer benefits like airport lounge access and discounts on inflight food and drinks.
3. What should I know before using a travel rewards credit card?
Before using a travel rewards credit card, you should be aware of the fees associated with the card. Some cards have annual fees, foreign transaction fees, and other charges. You should also know your card’s interest rates, as well as the terms and conditions of its reward structure.
4. How can I make the most of my travel rewards credit card?
To make the most of your travel rewards credit card, be sure to meet the requirements of a bonus offer if available, use the card to make purchases in categories that reward you with additional points or miles, and redeem your points or miles for items such as flights or hotels. If your card also offers other benefits, like hotel discounts or airport lounge access, try to make use of them.