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16 Best Travel Credit Cards of January 2024

ALSO CONSIDER: Best credit cards of 2024 || Best rewards credit cards || Best airline credit cards || Best hotel credit cards

A travel rewards credit card brings your next trip a little closer every time you use it. Each purchase earns points or miles that you can redeem for travel expenses. If you're loyal to a specific airline or hotel chain, consider getting one of that company's branded credit cards. Otherwise, check out the general-purpose travel cards on this page, which give you flexible rewards that you can use without the restrictions and blackout dates of branded cards.

Some of our selections for the best travel credit cards can be applied for through NerdWallet, and some cannot. Below, you'll find application links for the credit cards from our partners that are available through NerdWallet, followed by the full list of our picks.

Show summary

NerdWallet's Best Travel Credit Cards of January 2024

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card : Best for Flexibility + point transfers + big sign-up bonus

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card : Best for Flat-rate travel rewards

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card : Best for Travel portal benefits

Chase Freedom Unlimited® : Best for Cash back for travel bookings

Chase Freedom Flex℠ : Best for Cash back for travel bookings

American Express® Gold Card : Best for Big rewards on everyday spending

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card : Best for Bonus rewards + no annual fee

The Platinum Card® from American Express : Best for Luxury travel perks

U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card : Best for Road trips

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card : Best for Business travelers — bonus rewards + big sign-up offer

Citi Premier® Card : Best for Triple points on multiple categories

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card : Best for Flat-rate rewards + no annual fee, and for balance transfers

Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card : Best for Airline credit card

Chase Sapphire Reserve® : Best for Bonus travel rewards + high-end perks

World of Hyatt Credit Card : Best for Hotel credit card

Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card : Best for Travel rewards for rent payments + no annual fee

Best Travel Credit Cards From Our Partners

Find the right credit card for you..

Whether you want to pay less interest or earn more rewards, the right card's out there. Just answer a few questions and we'll narrow the search for you.

Flexibility + point transfers + big sign-up bonus

Flat-rate travel rewards, travel portal benefits, cash back for travel bookings, big rewards on everyday spending, bonus rewards + no annual fee, luxury travel perks, business travelers — bonus rewards + big sign-up offer, triple points on multiple categories, flat-rate rewards + no annual fee, and for balance transfers, airline credit card, bonus travel rewards + high-end perks, hotel credit card, travel rewards for rent payments + no annual fee, full list of editorial picks: best travel credit cards.

Before applying, confirm details on the issuer’s website.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Our pick for: Flat-rate rewards

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is probably the best-known general-purpose travel credit card, thanks to its ubiquitous advertising. You earn 5 miles per dollar on hotels and car rentals booked through Capital One Travel and 2 miles per dollar on all other purchases. Miles can be redeemed at a value of 1 cent apiece for any travel purchase, without the blackout dates and other restrictions of branded hotel and airline cards. The card offers a great sign-up bonus and other worthwhile perks ( see rates and fees ). Read our review.

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Our pick for: Flat-rate rewards + no annual fee, and for balance transfers

One of the best no-annual-fee travel cards available, the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card gives you a solid rewards rate on every purchase, with points that can be redeemed for any travel purchase, without the restrictions of branded airline and hotel cards. Bank of America® has an expansive definition of "travel," too, giving you additional flexibility in how you use your rewards. Read our review.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Our pick for: Bonus travel rewards + high-end perks

The high annual fee on the Chase Sapphire Reserve® gives many potential applicants pause, but frequent travelers should be able to wring enough value out of this card to more than make up for the cost. Cardholders get bonus rewards (up to 10X) on dining and travel, a fat bonus offer, annual travel credits, airport lounge access, and a 50% boost in point value when redeeming points for travel booked through Chase. Points can also be transferred to about a dozen airline and hotel partners. Read our review. 

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Our pick for: Flexibility + point transfers + big sign-up bonus

For a reasonable annual fee, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card earns bonus rewards (up to 5X) on travel, dining, select streaming services, and select online grocery purchases. Points are worth 25% more when you redeem them for travel booked through Chase, or you can transfer them to about a dozen airline and hotel partners. The sign-up bonus is stellar, too. Read our review. 

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

Our pick for: Bonus rewards + no annual fee

The Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card offers so much value, it's hard to believe there's no annual fee. Start with a great bonus offer, then earn extra rewards in a host of common spending categories — restaurants, gas stations, transit, travel, streaming and more. Read our review.

Citi Premier® Card

Our pick for: Triple points in multiple categories

The Citi Premier® Card earns bonus points on airfare, hotels, supermarkets, dining and gas stations. There's a solid sign-up bonus as well.  Read our review.

U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card

Our pick for: Road trips

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card is one of the most generous cards on the market if you're taking to the skies or the road, thanks to the quadruple points it earns on travel and purchases at gas stations and EV charging stations. It's also a solid card for everyday expenses like groceries, dining and streaming, and it comes with ongoing credits that can offset its annual fee:  $0 intro for the first year, then $95 .  Read our review .

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Our pick for: Travel portal benefits

Capital One's premium travel credit card can deliver terrific benefits — provided you're willing to do your travel spending through the issuer's online booking portal. That's where you'll earn the highest rewards rates plus credits that can make back the bulk of your annual fee ( see rates and fees ). Read our review.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Our pick for: Cash back for travel bookings

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® was already a fine card when it offered 1.5% cash back on all purchases. Now it's even better, with bonus rewards on travel booked through Chase, as well as at restaurants and drugstores. On top of all that, new cardholders get a 0% introductory APR period and the opportunity to earn a sweet bonus. Read our review.

Chase Freedom Flex℠

The Chase Freedom Flex℠ offers bonus cash back in quarterly categories that you activate, as well as on travel booked through Chase, at restaurants and at drugstores. Category activation can be a hassle, but if your spending matches the categories — and for a lot of people, it will — you can rack up hundreds of dollars a year. There's a fantastic bonus offer for new cardholders and a 0% intro APR period, too. Read our review.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Our pick for: Luxury travel perks

The Platinum Card® from American Express comes with a hefty annual fee, but travelers who like to go in style (and aren't afraid to pay for comfort) can more than get their money's worth. Enjoy extensive airport lounge access, hundreds of dollars a year in travel and shopping credits, hotel benefits and more. That's not even getting into the high rewards rate on eligible travel purchases and the rich welcome offer for new cardholders. Read our review.

American Express® Gold Card

Our pick for: Big rewards on everyday spending

The American Express® Gold Card can earn you a pile of points from everyday spending, with generous rewards at U.S. supermarkets, at restaurants and on certain flights booked through amextravel.com. Other benefits include hundreds of dollars a year in available dining and travel credits and a solid welcome offer for new cardholders. There's an annual fee, though, and a pretty substantial one, so it's not for smaller spenders. Read our review.

Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card

Our pick for: Rewards on rent payments

The Bilt World Elite Mastercard® Credit Card stands out by offering credit card rewards on rent payments without incurring an additional fee. The ability to earn rewards on what for many people is their single biggest monthly expense makes this card worth a look for any renter. You also get bonus points on dining and travel, and redemption options include point transfers to partner hotel and loyalty programs. Read our review.

PenFed Pathfinder® Rewards Visa Signature® Card

Our pick for: Credit union rewards

With premium perks for a $95 annual fee (which can be waived in some cases), jet-setters will get a lot of value from the PenFed Pathfinder® Rewards Visa Signature® Card . It also offers a generous rewards rate on travel purchases and a decent flat rate on everything else. Plus, you’ll get travel credits and a Priority Pass membership that offers airport lounge access for $32 per visit. Read our review.

Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card

Our pick for: Airline credit card

The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card pays bonus rewards not only on Delta flights but also at restaurants worldwide and at U.S. supermarkets, making it the rare airline card that's great for everyday spending. A best-in-class checked-bag benefit (first bag free for you and up to eight others on your reservation), priority boarding and the opportunity to earn a flight credit each year make this card a bargain for Delta stalwarts. Read our review.

» Not a Delta flyer? See our best airline cards for other options.

World of Hyatt Credit Card

Our pick for: Hotel credit card

Hyatt isn't as big as its competitors, but World of Hyatt Credit Card is worth a look for anyone who spends a lot of time on the road. You can earn a lot of points even on non-Hyatt spending, and those points have a high value compared with rival programs. There's a great sign-up bonus, free nights, automatic elite status and more. Read our review.

» Not a Hyatt customer? See our best hotel cards for other options.

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

Our pick for: Small business — bonus categories + big sign-up offer

The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card starts you off with one of the biggest sign-up bonuses of any credit card anywhere: Earn 100k bonus points after you spend $8,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 cash back or $1,250 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. You also get bonus rewards on travel expenses and common business spending categories, like advertising, shipping and internet, cable and phone service. Points are worth 25% more when redeemed for travel booked through Chase, or you can transfer them to about a dozen airline and hotel partners. Learn more and apply .

Are you in Canada?

See NerdWallet's best travel cards for Canada.

OTHER RESOURCES

By Sara Rathner and Sam Kemmis , NerdWallet

HOW TRAVEL REWARDS WORK

Modern-day adventurers and once-a-year vacationers alike love the idea of earning rewards toward their next big trip. According to a NerdWallet study , 68% of American adults say they have a credit card that earns travel rewards.

With a travel rewards credit card, you earn points or miles every time you use the card, but you can often earn more points per dollar in select categories. Some top travel credit cards, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve® , offer bonus points on any travel spending, while the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card grants bonus points when you use the card at Marriott hotels, grocery stores, restaurants or gas stations.

Not all points and miles earned on travel rewards credit cards are the same:

General-purpose travel credit cards — including the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card , the American Express® Gold Card and the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card — give you rewards that can be used like cash to pay for travel or that can be exchanged for points in airline or hotel loyalty programs. With their flexible rewards, general-purpose options are usually the best travel credit cards for those who don't stick to a single airline or hotel chain.

Airline- and hotel-specific cards — such as the United℠ Explorer Card and the Hilton Honors American Express Card — give points and miles that can be used only with the brand on the card. (Although it's possible in some cases to transfer hotel points to airlines, we recommend against it because you get a poor value.) These so-called co-branded cards are usually the best travel credit cards for those who always fly one particular airline or stay with one hotel group.

How do we value points and miles? With the rewards earned on general travel cards, it's simple: They have a fixed value, usually between 1 and 1.5 cents per point, and you can spend them like cash. With airline miles and hotel points, finding the true value is more difficult. How much value you get depends on how you redeem them.

To better understand what miles are worth, NerdWallet researched the cash prices and reward-redemption values for hundreds of flights. Our results:

Keep in mind that the airline values are based on main cabin economy tickets and exclude premium cabin redemptions. See our valuations page for business class valuations and details about our methodology.

Our valuations are different from many others you may find. That’s because we looked at the average value of a point based on reasonable price searches that anyone can perform, not a maximized value that only travel rewards experts can expect to reach.

You should therefore use these values as a baseline for your own redemptions. If you can redeem your points for the values listed on our valuations page, you are doing well. Of course, if you are able to get higher value out of your miles, that’s even better.

HOW TO CHOOSE A TRAVEL CREDIT CARD

There are scores of travel rewards cards to choose from. The best travel credit card for you has as much to do with you as with the card. How often you travel, how much flexibility you want, how much you value airline or hotel perks — these are all things to take into account when deciding on a travel card. Our article on how to choose a travel credit card recommends that you prioritize:

Rewards you will actually use (points and miles are only as good as your ability to redeem them for travel).

A high earning rate (how much value you get in rewards for every dollar spent on the card).

A sign-up bonus (a windfall of points for meeting a spending requirement in your first few months).

Even with these goals in mind, there are all kinds of considerations that will influence your decision on a travel rewards credit card.

Travel cards are for travelers

Travel cards vs. cash-back cards.

The very first question to ask yourself when choosing a travel credit card is: Should I get a travel card at all? Travel credit cards are best for frequent travelers, who are more likely to get enough value from rewards and perks to make up for the annual fees that the best travel credit cards charge. (Some travel cards charge no annual fee, but they tend to offer lesser rewards than full-fee cards.) A NerdWallet study found that those who travel only occasionally — say, once a year — will probably get greater overall rewards from cash-back credit cards , most of which charge no annual fee, than from a travel card.

Flexibility and perks: A trade-off

Co-branded cards vs. general travel cards.

Travel credit cards fall into two basic categories: co-branded cards and general travel cards.

Co-branded cards carry the name of an airline or hotel group, such as the United℠ Explorer Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card . The rewards you earn are redeemable only with that particular brand, which can limit your flexibility, sometimes sharply. For example, if your credit card's co-branded airline partner doesn't have any award seats available on the flight you want on the day you want, you're out of luck. On the other hand, co-branded cards commonly offer airline- or hotel-specific perks that general travel cards can't match.

General travel cards aren't tied to a specific airline or hotel, so they offer much greater flexibility. Well-known general travel cards include the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card . Rewards on general travel cards come as points (sometimes called "miles" but they're really points) that you can redeem for any travel expense. You're not locked into using a single airline or hotel, but you also won't enjoy the perks of a co-branded card.

Evaluating general travel credit cards

What you get with a general travel card.

The credit cards featured at the top of this page are general travel cards. They're issued by a bank (such as Chase or Capital One), carry only that bank's name, and aren't tied to any single airline or hotel group. With these cards, you earn points on every purchase — usually 1 to 2 points per dollar spent, sometimes with additional points in certain categories.

Issuers of general travel cards typically entice new applicants with big sign-up bonuses (also known as "welcome offers") — tens of thousands of miles that you can earn by spending a certain amount of money on the card in your first few months.

» MORE: NerdWallet's best credit card sign-up offers

What do you do with those points? Depending on the card, you may have several ways to redeem them:

Booking travel. With this option, your points pay for travel booked through the issuer's website, using a utility similar to Orbitz or Expedia. For example, if points were worth 1 cent apiece when redeemed this way, you could book a $400 flight on the issuer's portal and pay for it with 40,000 points

Statement credit. This lets you essentially erase travel purchases by using your points for credit on your statement. You make travel arrangements however you want (directly with an airline or hotel, through a travel agency, etc.) and charge it to your card. Once the charge shows up on your account, you apply the necessary points and eliminate the cost.

Transferring to partners. The card issuer may allow you to transfer your points to loyalty programs for airlines or hotel chains, turning your general card into something like a co-branded card (although you don't get the perks of a co-brand).

Cash back, gift cards or merchandise. If you don't plan to travel, you can burn off your rewards with these options, although you'll often get a lower value per point.

Airline and hotel cards sharply limit your choice, but they make up for it with perks that only they can offer, like free checked bags or room upgrades. General travel cards, on the other hand, offer maximum flexibility but can't provide the same kinds of perks, because the banks that issue them don't operate the airlines or hotels. Still, there are some noteworthy perks on general travel cards, including:

Travel credit. This is automatic reimbursement for travel-related spending. Some top travel credit cards offer hundreds of dollars a year in travel credit.

Trusted traveler reimbursement. More and more travel credit cards are covering the application fee for TSA Precheck and Global Entry, programs that allow you to move through airport security and customs more quickly.

Airport lounge access. Hundreds of lounges worldwide operate separately from airlines under such networks as Priority Pass and Airspace, and several general travel cards offer access to these lounges.

Points programs

Every major card issuer has at least one travel card with a points program. American Express calls its program Membership Rewards, while Chase has Ultimate Rewards® and Citi pays in ThankYou points. Wells Fargo has Wells Fargo Rewards, and U.S. Bank has FlexPerks. Bank of America® travel cards offer points without a fancy name. Travel cards from Capital One, Barclays and Discover all call their points "miles."

These programs differ in how much their points are worth and how you can use them. Some offer the full range of redemption options, including transfers to loyalty programs. Others let you use them only to book travel or get statement credit.

» MORE: Travel loyalty program reviews

Evaluating airline credit cards

What you get with an airline credit card.

Airline credit cards earn "miles" with each purchase. You typically get 1 mile per dollar spent, with a higher rate (2 or more miles per dollar) on purchases with the airline itself. (Some airline cards have also begun offering extra miles for purchases in additional categories, such as restaurants or car rental agencies.) These miles go into the same frequent-flyer account as the ones you earn by flying the airline, and you can redeem them for free flights with the airline or its alliance partners.

Co-branded airline cards typically offer sign-up bonuses (or welcome offers). But what really sets them apart are the perks they give you. With some cards, for example, the checked-bag benefit alone can make up for the annual fee after a single roundtrip by a couple. Common perks of airline cards include:

Free checked bags. This commonly applies to the first checked bag for you and at least one companion on your reservation. Some cards extend this perk to more people, and higher-end cards (with higher annual fees) may even let you check two bags apiece for free.

Priority boarding. Holders of co-branded airline credit cards often get to board the plane early — after the airline's elite-status frequent flyers but before the general population. This gives you time to settle in and gives you a leg up on claiming that coveted overhead bin space.

In-flight discounts or freebies. You might get, say, 25% off the cost of food and beverages during the flight, or free Wi-Fi.

Airport lounge access. High-end cards often include a membership to the airline's airport lounges, where you can get away from the frenzy in the terminal and enjoy a complimentary snack. Some less-expensive airline cards give you only limited or discounted lounge access; others give you none at all.

Companion fares. This perk lets you bring someone with you for a lower cost when you buy a ticket at full price.

A boost toward elite status. Miles earned with a credit card, as opposed to those earned from actually flying on the airline, usually do not count toward earning elite status in an airline's frequent-flyer program. However, carrying an airline's high-end card might automatically qualify you for a higher tier within the program.

The biggest U.S. airlines — American, United and Delta — offer an array of credit cards. Each airline has a no-annual-fee card that earns miles on purchases but provides little in the way of perks (no free bags or priority boarding). Each has a high-end card with an annual fee in the neighborhood of $450 that offers lounge access and sumptuous perks. And each has a "middle-class" card with a fee of around $100 and solid ongoing perks. Southwest offers three credit cards with varying fees; smaller carriers may just have a single card.

» MORE: NerdWallet's best airline credit cards

Choosing an airline

Which airline card you get depends in large part on what airline you fly, and that's heavily influenced by where you live. Alaska Airlines, for example, has an outstanding credit card, but the airline's routes are concentrated primarily on the West Coast. So it's not a great option for those who live in, say, Buffalo, New York, or Montgomery, Alabama.

If your local airport is dominated by a single airline, then you're probably flying that carrier most (or all) of the time by default. Delta, for example, is the 800-pound gorilla at Minneapolis-St. Paul and Salt Lake City. United has the bulk of the traffic at Newark and Washington Dulles. American calls the shots at Charlotte and Dallas-Fort Worth. That airline's credit card may be your only realistic option. If you're in a large or midsize market with frequent service from multiple airlines, you have more choice.

» MORE: How to choose an airline credit card

Evaluating hotel credit cards

What you get with a hotel card.

Hotel credit cards earn points with each purchase. As with airline cards, you typically get more points per dollar for purchases from the co-brand partner, and some cards also give bonus points in additional categories. (Hotel cards tend to give you a greater number of points overall than airline cards, but each individual point is generally worth less than a typical airline mile.) Similar to the airline model, the points you earn with the card go into the same loyalty account as the points you earn from actually staying at a hotel. You redeem your points for free stays.

Hotel cards usually offer a sign-up bonus, but like airline cards, they really make their bones with the ongoing perks. Common perks on hotel cards include:

Free nights. Several cards offer this perk, which can make up for the card's annual fee. You may get a free night automatically every year, or you may unlock it by spending a certain amount within a year. In the latter case, it comes on top of the points you earn for your spending.

Upgrades and freebies. Cardholders may qualify for automatic room upgrades when available, or free or discounted amenities such as meals or spa packages.

Early check-in/late check-out. No one likes having to cool their heels in the hotel lobby waiting for 3 o'clock to check in. And no one likes have to vacate their room by 11 a.m. when their flight doesn't leave till evening.

Accelerated elite status. Some hotel cards automatically bump you up a level in their loyalty program just for being a cardholder.

» MORE: NerdWallet's best hotel credit cards

Choosing a hotel group

If you decide to go the hotel-card route, you'll need to decide which hotel group gets your business. Hotels aren't as market-concentrated as airlines, so if your travels take you mostly to metropolitan areas, you'll have a decent amount of choice. Keep in mind that even though there are dozens of nationally recognizable hotel brands, ranging from budget inns to luxury resorts, many of them are just units in a larger hotel company, and that company's card can unlock benefits across the group.

Marriott, for example, includes not only its namesake properties but nearly 30 other brands, including Courtyard, Fairfield, Renaissance, Residence Inn, Ritz-Carlton, Sheraton and Westin. The Hilton family includes DoubleTree, Embassy Suites, Hampton Inn and Waldorf-Astoria. InterContinental includes Holiday Inn, Candlewood, Staybridge and Crowne Plaza. Wyndham and Choice have more than 15 mid-tier and budget-oriented brands between them.

HOW TO COMPARE TRAVEL CREDIT CARDS

No travel rewards credit card is going to have everything you want. You're going to be disappointed if you expect to find a high rewards rate, a generous sign-up bonus, top-notch perks and no annual fee. Each card delivers value through a different combination of features; it's up to you to compare cards based on the following features and choose the best travel credit card for your needs and preferences.

Most of the best travel cards charge an annual fee. Fees in the range of $90 to $100 are standard for travel cards. Premium cards with extensive perks will have fees of $450 or more. Weigh the value of the rewards and perks you'll get to make sure they'll make up for the fee.

Can you find good cards without an annual fee? Absolutely! There are no-fee options on our list of the best travel credit cards, and we've rounded up more here . Just be aware that if you go with a no-fee travel card, you'll earn rewards at a lower rate, your sign-up bonus will be smaller, and you won't get as many (if any) perks.

Rewards rate

Rewards can be thought of in terms of "earn rate" and "burn rate".

The earn rate is how many points or miles you receive per dollar spent. Some general travel cards offer flat-rate rewards, meaning you get the same rate on all purchases, all the time — 2 miles per dollar, for example, or 1.5 points per dollar. Others, including most co-branded cards, offer a base rate of maybe 1 point per dollar and then pay a higher rate in certain categories, such as airline tickets, hotel stays, general travel expenses or restaurant meals.

The burn rate is the value you get for those points or miles when you redeem them. The industry average is about 1 cent per point or mile. Some cards, particularly hotel cards, have lower value per point on the "burn" side but give you more points per dollar on the earning side.

When comparing rewards rates, don't just look at the numbers. Look at the categories to which those numbers apply, and find a card that matches your spending patterns. Getting 5 points per dollar seems great — but if those 5X points come only on purchases at, say, office supply stores, and you don't spend money on office supplies, then you're getting lousy value.

Sign-up bonus

Travel cards tend to have the biggest sign-up bonuses — tens of thousands of points that you earn by hitting a certain amount of spending. But there's more to consider when comparing sign-up bonuses than just how many points or miles you earn. You must also take into account how much you have to spend to earn the bonus. While cash-back credit cards often require just $500 to $1,000 in spending over three months to unlock a bonus, travel cards commonly have thresholds of $3,000 to $5,000.

Never spend money you don't have just to earn a sign-up bonus. Carrying $3,000 in debt for a year in order to earn a $500 bonus doesn't make economic sense — the interest you'll pay could easily wipe out the value of the bonus.

Finally, keep in mind that the biggest bonuses will come on cards with annual fees.

Foreign transaction fees

A good travel card will not charge a foreign transaction fee. These fees are surcharges on purchases made outside the U.S. The industry standard is about 3%, which is enough to wipe out most if not all of the rewards you earn on a purchase. If you never leave the U.S., then this isn't much of a concern, but anyone who travels abroad should bring a no-foreign-transaction-fee card with them.

Some issuers don't charge foreign transaction fees on any of their cards. Others charge them on some cards but not all.

International acceptance

Not all travel credit cards are great companions for international travel. While Visa and Mastercard are good pretty much worldwide, you may encounter limited acceptance for American Express and, especially, Discover, depending on the destination. This doesn't mean world travelers should dismiss AmEx and Discover. Just know that if you take one of these cards with you overseas, you'd be smart to bring along a backup in case you run into acceptance problems. (Having a backup card is good advice within the U.S., too, really.)

Travel protections

Consider which travel protections — car rental insurance , trip cancellation coverage , lost baggage protection — are important to you.

"Rewards" are what you get for using a credit card — the points earned with each transaction and the bonuses you unlock with your spending. "Perks" are goodies that you get just for carrying the card. There's a very close correlation between the annual fee on a card and the perks you get for carrying it. Cards with no annual fee are all about rewards and go very light on perks. Premium cards with annual fees of $450 or more are laden with perks (although sometimes their rewards aren't too special). Midtier cards (in the $100 range) tend to have solid rewards and a handful of high-value perks.

Assuming you take advantage of them, the perks often make up for the annual fee on a card quite easily. This is especially true with co-branded cards. Free checked bags can pay for an airline card several times over, and a free night is usually worth more than the fee on a hotel card. When comparing the perks of various cards, be realistic about which ones you will and won't use. Sure, that card may entitle you to a free spa package the next time you're at a five-star hotel, but how often do you stay at five-star hotels?

SHOULD YOU GET A TRAVEL CARD? PROS AND CONS

Pros: why it's worth getting a travel card.

The sign-up bonus gives you a big head-start on travel. Bonuses on the best travel credit cards typically run $500 or more — enough for a roundtrip ticket in many instances.

Perks make travel less expensive and more relaxing. You won't have to worry about cramming a week's worth of clothes into a carry-on if your travel credit card gives you a free checked bag (or automatically reimburses you for the bag fee). Hate the crush of travelers in the terminal? Escape to the airport lounge. Renting a car? Use a travel card that provides primary rental car insurance.

Rewards get you closer to your next trip with every purchase. Spending money on the mundane activities of daily life has a silver lining when you know that every $1,000 you spend will knock $10 or $20 off the cost of that future beach vacation or trip home to see Mom and Dad.

No foreign transaction fee can mean big savings. Take just any old credit card with you on vacation outside the U.S., and $1,000 worth of purchases can cost you $30 off the top due to the foreign transaction surcharge. Good travel cards don't charge this fee.

"Double dipping" gives you more points on travel purchases. Buy a plane ticket or book a hotel room, and you'll earn loyalty points or miles regardless of how you pay. Use the right credit card, though, and you'll earn even more points and miles on top of those.

Strategic redemption can multiply your value. With cash-back credit cards, 1 cent is worth 1 cent, and that's just how it goes. The points and miles on many travel credit cards have variable value based on how you redeem them — booking travel with them vs. transferring them to a partner, booking domestic vs. international flights and economy vs. business class, staying at budget hotels vs. high-end resorts, and so on.

Cons: Why a travel card might not be for you

The best cards charge annual fees. In many cases, the value you get from a credit card more than makes up for the annual fee. But some people are dead set against paying a fee under any circumstances. If that's you, your options in travel cards will be sharply limited, and you won't get the perks that provide a big portion of the value on many cards.

Sign-up bonus spending requirements can be steep. A bonus worth $500, $600 or $700 is attractive, but only if you can afford to earn it with spending you were going to do anyway. If you have to amass thousands of dollars in debt and then pay interest on it, it's not worth it.

Travel cards aren't ideal for infrequent travelers. In the first year with a travel card, you're probably going to come out ahead: You can earn a big sign-up bonus, and several popular cards waive the first year's annual fee, too. In subsequent years, though, you'll break even on that fee only if you use the card enough to make up for it (with the rewards you earn and redeem and the perks you use). Infrequent travelers are more likely to get more total rewards from a cash-back card with no annual fee.

Cash back is simpler and more flexible. Some travel cards allow you to redeem your rewards only for travel. Others give you poor value unless you redeem for travel. Still others have complicated redemption options, making it hard to get the most out of your rewards. With cash-back credit cards, you can use your rewards on anything, you know exactly how much your rewards are worth, and redemption is usually simple.

Rewards cards tend to charge higher interest rates. If you regularly carry a balance from month to month, a travel credit card — or any rewards credit card — probably isn't your best choice. The interest you pay is eating up the value of your rewards. You're better off with a low-interest card that reduces the cost of carrying debt.

MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR TRAVEL CARD

Maximize your rewards with the following tips:

Plan your credit card application around a big purchase to earn the sign-up bonus.

Seize every opportunity to pick up the tab, especially if your travel credit card pays bonus rewards on dining; your friends can pay you back while you collect rewards.

Redeem rewards for travel instead of gift cards, merchandise or (in most cases) cash back to get the best value.

Join the loyalty program associated with a co-branded card — a frequent-flyer or frequent-guest program.

Shop for essentials in your card’s online bonus mall or through its exclusive offers, if available, to get extra rewards.

OTHER CARDS TO CONSIDER

It’s worth considering whether a travel credit card is even right for you in the first place. A NerdWallet study found that cash-back credit cards often earn more money — even for many travelers.

If you carry a balance from month to month, the higher interest rates typically charged by rewards cards can cancel out any rewards earned. If you have a good credit score, you're better off with a low-interest credit card that can save you money on interest.

A good travel credit card shouldn't charge foreign transaction fees, but there are good non-travel cards that also don't charge them. See our best cards with no foreign transaction fee .

If you value transparency and flexibility in your rewards, you can't go wrong with a cash-back card — and you can still use the rewards for travel, if you want.

Finally, if you're still not sure what's right for you, take a look at our best rewards credit cards for options beyond travel and cash back.

To view rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card , see this page . To view rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express , see this page . To view rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card , see this page .

Last updated on January 25 , 2024

Methodology

NerdWallet's Credit Cards team selects the best travel rewards credit cards based on overall consumer value, as evidenced by star ratings, as well as their suitability for specific kinds of travelers. Factors in our evaluation include each card's annual fee, foreign transaction fees, rewards earnings rates, ease of use, redemption options, domestic and international acceptance, promotional APR period, bonus offers, and cardholder perks such as automatic statement credits and airport lounge access. Learn how NerdWallet rates credit cards.

Frequently asked questions

Travel credit cards earn points (sometimes called miles) each time you buy something. The standard earning rate is 1 to 2 points per dollar spent, and many cards give you extra points for certain purchases, particularly travel expenses. The value of a point depends on the card that earned it and how you redeem it, but a good rule of thumb is to assume each point is worth an average of about 1 cent.

Your points accumulate in a rewards account, where you can use them to pay for travel. Most cards let you book travel directly using a portal similar to those at online travel agencies or on airline and hotel websites, but instead of paying cash, you pay with your points. Depending on the card, you may also have the option of booking travel any way you want, paying for it with the card and then cashing in your points for a credit against those expenses.

Points and miles are just different names for the same thing: the currency used in a travel rewards program. Some travel credit cards call them points, some call them miles.

Airline frequent flyer programs have long used the term “miles” to refer to the rewards you earn for flying. That’s because at one time, you really did earn rewards according to how many miles you flew — the longer the flight, the more miles you earned. Nowadays, most domestic airlines give out “miles” based on how much you spend, not how far you fly, so they’re really just points. (There are a few exceptions, though, notably Alaska Airlines.)

Especially when it comes to redeeming your rewards, there’s no difference between points and miles. The number of points or miles you need is based mostly on the cost of what you’re redeeming them for. It takes more than 500 miles (value about: $5) to get a free 500-mile flight!

The value of a point or mile depends on the card you earned it with and how you redeem it. A common rule of thumb is to assume that each point or mile is worth an average of 1 cent, although you can certainly get a much higher (or lower) redemption value. See our travel loyalty roundup page for NerdWallet’s current valuations for airline miles and hotel points.

Travel credit cards fall into two main categories: co-branded and general-purpose.

• Co-branded travel cards carry the name of an airline or hotel chain. The rewards you earn on the card can typically be redeemed only with that brand (or maybe its partners). Co-branded cards limit your flexibility, but because they are issued in partnership with an airline or hotel, they can give you special perks, like free checked bags or room upgrades.

• General-purpose travel cards are issued by a credit card company and are not directly tied to any particular airline or hotel. They earn points in the issuer's own program, such as American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards® or Citi ThankYou. These points are a lot more flexible, as you can use them to pay for a range of travel expenses, including flights on any airline or stays at any hotel. However, they don’t offer the airline- or hotel-specific perks of co-branded cards.

Travel cards — like rewards cards in general — typically require good to excellent credit for approval. Good credit is generally defined as a credit score of 690 or better. However, credit scores alone do not guarantee approval. Every issuer has its own criteria for evaluating applications.

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Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported comparison service. The offers that appear on this site are from companies from which Bankrate.com receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear within listing categories. Other factors, such as our own proprietary website rules and the likelihood of applicants' credit approval, also impact how and where products appear on this site. Bankrate.com does not include the entire universe of available financial or credit offers.

Bankrate has partnerships with issuers including, but not limited to, American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Citi and Discover.

Best travel credit cards of January 2024

Most recently before joining Bankrate, Robert worked as an editor and writer at The Ascent by The Motley Fool, covering a number of personal finance topics, including credit cards, mortgages and loans.

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Bankrate expert Garrett Yarbrough strives to make navigating credit cards and credit building smooth sailing for his readers. After regularly featuring his credit card, credit monitoring and identity theft analysis on NextAdvisor.com, he joined the CreditCards.com and Bankrate teams as a staff writer to develop product reviews and comprehensive credit card guides focused on cash back, credit scores and card offers.

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Nouri Zarrugh is a writer and editor for CreditCards.com and Bankrate,  focusing on product news, guides and reviews. His areas of expertise include credit card strategy, rewards programs, point valuation and credit scores, and his stories on building credit have been cited by Mic.com, LifeHacker, People.com and more. Through his thorough card reviews and product comparisons, Nouri strives to demystify personal finance topics and credit card terms and conditions to help readers save money and protect their credit score.

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Stephanie Zito is a professional traveler, self-employed humanitarian consultant and collector of credit card points. She shares savvy travel tips that she’s learned firsthand circling the globe for more than 25 years. She’s a backpacker, expect and premium traveler who’s visited more than 130 countries and all seven continents. Her life motto is “See the world, change the world, have fun doing it!” and her mission is to inspire others along the journey.

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Travel credit cards help you earn valuable points and miles on your purchases. For maximum value, some cards earn rewards not only on travel, but also everyday purchases like dining, groceries and gas. You can redeem these rewards for free or discounted flights, hotel stays or to cover other travel-related expenses.

The best travel cards also come with additional features. Even no-annual-fee travel cards are likely to offer perks like sign-up bonuses, intro APR offers and travel insurance. But for top-of-the-line benefits like airport lounge access, elite status and travel credits, expect to pay an annual fee.

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Bankrate's Best Travel Credit Cards of January 2024

  • Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card : Best for flat-rate rewards
  • The Platinum Card® from American Express : Best for luxury travel
  • Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card : Best for intro APR
  • American Express® Gold Card : Best for foodies
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card : Best starter travel card
  • Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card : Best for practical perks
  • Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card : Best for no annual fee ( See Rates & Fees )
  • Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card : Best for companion tickets
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card : Best starter airline card
  • Discover it® Miles : Best for first-year value
  • Hilton Honors American Express Card : Best no-annual-fee hotel card
  • Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card : Best for gas
  • Citi Premier® Card : Best for everyday spending
  • Bilt Mastercard® : Best for transfer partners
  • Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card : Best luxury hotel card
  • Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card : Best for expedited security screening
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve® : Best for point values
  • Credit One Bank Wander® Card : Best for fair credit
  • Compare our top cards

What to know about travel credit cards

How do credit card points and miles work.

  • Tips for choosing the best travel card
  • Expert advice on travel cards

Who should get a travel credit card?

How we assess the best travel credit cards.

  • Frequently asked questions
  • Ask the experts

Increase your odds of finding the perfect card

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1 in 3 people w ho try approval odds find a card they like.

Image of Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Our writers, editors and industry experts score credit cards based on a variety of factors including card features, bonus offers and independent research. Credit card issuers have no say or influence on how we rate cards.

A FICO score/credit score is used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit score alone does not guarantee or imply approval for any financial product.

Intro offer

New Venture cardholders can earn 75,000 miles once they spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening

Offer valuation

We calculate this number by multiplying the card's intro offer by Bankrate's valuation of this issuer's rewards program , showing you how much your points or miles are worth in dollars.

2 Miles - 5 Miles

Rewards rate

5 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel 2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Regular APR

  • 5 Miles 5 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • 2 Miles 2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card tops the list of best overall travel credit cards due in part to its flexibility. You'll earn unlimited miles and can redeem them as statement credits for a variety of travel expenses, including airfare and accommodations. Read our full Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card review .

  • Zero foreign transaction fees make this an excellent choice for international travelers.
  • Earn miles at a flat rate for all purchases, with no limit on the number of miles you can earn.
  • Miles are worth less when redeemed with certain travel partners
  • Spending requirements for reaching the sign-up bonus can be pricey.
  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase—or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
  • Enrich every hotel stay from the Lifestyle Collection with a suite of cardholder benefits, like a $50 experience credit, room upgrades, and more
  • Transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs

Image of The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year. Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.

  • 5X Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
  • 5X Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.

Luxury travelers and big spenders will appreciate the bevy of travel benefits associated with The Platinum Card from American Express. Just be sure to factor in the value of the many perks, plus the lucrative rewards rates, when you consider the $695 annual fee. Read our full Platinum Card from American Express review .

  • Comes with a generous welcome offer and a longer time period to earn it compared to most rewards cards.
  • A robust line-up of airline and hotel partners make this card truly valuable for travelers.
  • The $695 annual fee is steep; it may deter certain cardholders from applying for this card.
  • Redeeming and maximizing the card’s credit and benefits requires some legwork and can be a bit confusing.
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Hotel Credit: Get up to $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two-night stay.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back in statement credits each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Disney+, a Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The Wall Street Journal. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership (subject to auto-renewal) with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card®. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Up Benefits are excluded.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Platinum Card®.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • $300 Equinox Credit: Get up to $300 back in statement credits per calendar year on an Equinox membership, or an Equinox club membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you pay with your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required. Visit https://platinum.equinox.com/ to enroll.
  • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: Breeze through security with CLEAR Plus at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues nationwide and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your Membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Platinum Card®. Learn more.
  • $100 Global Entry Credit: Receive either a $100 statement credit every 4 years for a Global Entry application fee or a statement credit up to $85 every 4.5 years for a TSA PreCheck® (through a TSA official enrollment provider) application fee, when charged to your Platinum Card®. Card Members approved for Global Entry will also receive access to TSA PreCheck at no additional cost.
  • Shop Saks with Platinum: Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases in Saks Fifth Avenue stores or at saks.com on your Platinum Card®. That's up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
  • $300 SoulCycle At-Home Bike Credit: Get a $300 statement credit for the purchase of a SoulCycle at-home bike with your Platinum Card®. An Equinox+ subscription is required to purchase a SoulCycle at-home bike and access SoulCycle content. Must charge full price of bike in one transaction. Shipping available in the contiguous U.S. only. Enrollment Required.
  • Unlock access to exclusive reservations and special dining experiences with Global Dining Access by Resy when you add your Platinum Card® to your Resy profile.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.

Image of Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

  • 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.

1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases

  • 1.5X 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases

This entry-level travel card keeps things simple. It offers flat-rate rewards without bonus categories and lets you redeem your rewards for a broad mix of travel options not found with many travel cards. It’s even more valuable if you’re a Bank of America customer who can qualify for a rewards boost through the Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program. Read our full Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card review .

  • Its easy-to-earn sign-up bonus and intro APR offers give this card good short-term value.
  • No annual fees or foreign transaction fees sweeten this offer.
  • You won’t get maximum value out of this card since it only offers a flat rate on purchases, and rewards can’t be transferred to airline partners.
  • The top tiers of the Bank of America Preferred Rewards® program may be out of reach for many cardholders.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don't expire as long as your account remains open.
  • Use your card to book your trip how and where you want - you're not limited to specific websites with blackout dates or restrictions.
  • Redeem points for a statement credit to pay for travel or dining purchases, such as flights, hotel stays, car and vacation rentals, baggage fees, and also at restaurants including takeout.
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 18.24% - 28.24% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee applies to all balance transfers.
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase. That means instead of earning an unlimited 1.5 points for every $1, you could earn 1.87-2.62 points for every $1 you spend on purchases.
  • Contactless Cards - The security of a chip card, with the convenience of a tap.
  • This online only offer may not be available if you leave this page or if you visit a Bank of America financial center. You can take advantage of this offer when you apply now.

Image of American Express® Gold Card

American Express® Gold Card

Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X). Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.

  • 4X Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
  • 4X Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • 3X Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.

If your love of dining is a constant travel companion, few credit cards are more rewarding than the American Express Gold Card. The rewards rates at restaurants, at U.S. supermarkets and on flights booked directly with airlines or on AmexTravel.com are exceptional. Read our full American Express Gold Card review .

  • This card features one of the best rewards return rate on dining currently on the market.
  • The card touts a formidable collection of travel protections and perks, like hotel upgrades (when available for onsite credit on qualifying activities).
  • The $250 annual fee is on the pricey side when compared to similar cards.
  • Flights are only rewarded at 3X when booked with airlines directly or on AmexTravel.com.
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Get a $100 experience credit with a minimum two-night stay when you book The Hotel Collection through American Express Travel. Experience credit varies by property.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.

Image of Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards® 3x on dining 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more

  • 5x 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 3x 3x on dining
  • 2x 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more

This popular travel card comes loaded with features that can make it easy to offset the modest $95 annual fee and come out well ahead. Its rewards program is one of the best, giving you the option to transfer your points to a airline or hotel loyalty programs or redeem them for travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal, where they’re worth an impressive 1.25 cents.    Read our full Chase Sapphire Preferred Card review .

  • You earn Ultimate Rewards points with this card — some of the most valuable and flexible rewards around.
  • The card touts significant long-term benefits like anniversary bonus points and travel credits, as well as travel protections like trip cancellation insurance and a car rental collision damage waiver.
  • Doesn’t offer airline- or hotel-specific perks like free checked bags, elite status or free night stays.
  • Comes with a penalty APR of 29.99 percent if you make a late payment, which you could be stuck with indefinitely.
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining, and 2x on all other travel purchases, and $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.
  • Member FDIC

Image of Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

2 Miles - 10 Miles

10 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel 5 Miles per dollar on flights booked through Capital One Travel 2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

  • 10 Miles 10 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • 5 Miles 5 Miles per dollar on flights booked through Capital One Travel

Despite carrying a hefty annual fee, this is one of the cheapest premium travel cards around. It offers complimentary lounge access, high-earning bonus rewards categories, anniversary credits and bonus miles, which can easily offset the annual fee for frequent travelers. Read our full Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card review .

  • Offers anniversary bonus miles and a chance to earn credits worth hundreds of dollars starting at your first account anniversary.
  • Comes with complimentary lounge access at over 1,300 lounges for you and two guests per visit.
  • To earn the anniversary credit, travel must be booked through the Capital One Travel portal. That’s not as flexible as some other cards, which offer credits that cover any travel purchases, regardless of how you book.
  • Lacks some perks found on other premium travel cards like airline or hotel elite status, which can get you benefits like free checked bags or room upgrades.
  • Receive a $300 annual credit for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Elevate every hotel stay from the Premier or Lifestyle Collections with a suite of cardholder benefits, like an experience credit, room upgrades, and more

Image of Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

  • Earn a bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $200 in travel

1.25 Miles - 5 Miles

5 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel 1.25 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

  • 1.25 Miles 1.25 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

The Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card offers many of the same perks as the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, without the burden of an annual fee. If you’re looking for a low-cost travel card, consider this one a top option. Read our full Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card review .

  • The welcome offer is generous for a no-annual-fee travel credit card.
  • There’s no minimum you’ll need to meet to start redeeming miles.
  • Redeeming for non-travel purchases waters down your miles.
  • Capital One has no major U.S. carrier in its line-up of travel partners.
  • $0 annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
  • Earn unlimited 1.25X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Enjoy 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months; 19.99% - 29.99% variable APR after that; balance transfer fee applies

Image of Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months.

Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels. Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery in the U.S. and at U.S. supermarkets. Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.

  • 3X Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • 2X Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery in the U.S. and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • 1X Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.

The annual companion certificate that comes with this card after the first year carries enough value to justify the annual fee on its own. Plus, unlike the companion certificates you’ll find on most airline cards, it carries no spending requirement beyond the card’s annual fee. Read our full Delta SkyMiles Platinum Amex card review .

  • Boasts several practical perks for frequent travelers, including Main Cabin 1 priority boarding, a free first checked bag, credits for TSA Precheck or Global Entry and more.
  • Comes with that get you closer to Medallion Status and discounts on in-flight purchases, complimentary upgrades, waived fees and more.
  • Its rewards rate on non-travel purchases is just okay. A flat-rate travel card could offer just as much value plus more flexibility to earn and redeem points with other airlines.
  • You won’t get complimentary Delta Sky Club lounge access — just discounted passes (effective 1/1/24, this benefit will no longer be available).
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights. Plus enjoy Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding and settle into your seat sooner.
  • Card Members get 15% off when using miles to book Award Travel on Delta flights through delta.com and the Fly Delta app. Discount not applicable to partner-operated flights or to taxes and fees.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Get access to Delta Sky Club® at a rate of $50 per person per visit for you and up to two guests or immediate family when traveling on a Delta flight from now until 12/31/23. Effective 1/1/24, this benefit will no longer be available.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Official Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Earn 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Delta Platinum Card, up to two times through 12/31/23. Effective 1/1/24, this benefit will no longer be available, and there will be a new way to earn toward Medallion Status with the Card. Learn more at delta.com/skymilesprogramchanges.
  • $250 Annual Fee.

Image of Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases. Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare. Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services; select streaming. Earn 2X points on Rapid Rewards® hotel and car rental partners. Earn 1X points on all other purchases.

  • 2X Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases.
  • 2X Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • 2X Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services; select streaming.
  • 2X Earn 2X points on Rapid Rewards® hotel and car rental partners.
  • 1X Earn 1X points on all other purchases.

This card’s anniversary bonus offers enough value to nearly offset the annual fee on its own, so it should be a terrific low-stakes option if you’re new to airline cards. Plus, its sign-up bonus value is on par with the value you’ll get with much pricier airline and travel cards. Read our full Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus card review .

  • You’ll automatically earn 3,000 Rapid Rewards points each year after your account anniversary. That’s valuable enough to offset much of the card’s already-low annual fee.
  • Rapid Rewards points can offer terrific redemption value based on Bankrate’s latest airline mile valuations, so they’re a good starting point if you’re new to travel rewards.
  • Southwest doesn’t have airline partners, so this card won’t be a good fit unless you’re okay with only redeeming points for Southwest flights and mostly flying domestically.
  • It may not be the best value overall. Some cards offer more rewards in more categories, let you redeem for travel with any airline and even let you transfer points to Southwest.
  • 3,000 anniversary points each year.
  • Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases.
  • Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services; select streaming.
  • 2 EarlyBird Check-In® each year.
  • Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Image of Discover it® Miles

Discover it® Miles

  • Unlimited Bonus: Unlimited Mile-for-Mile match for all new cardmembers - only from Discover. Discover gives you an unlimited match of all the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. There’s no signing up, no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a Miles-for-Miles match.

Offer valuation is not available for this credit card.

Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase.

  • 1.5X Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase.

Another option for people looking for a low-cost travel credit card, this Discover card combines solid flat-rate rewards with consumer-friendly terms, like no annual fee and no foreign transaction fee. Read our full Discover it® Miles card review.

  • As part of a generous welcome offer, all miles earned in your first year will receive a match at the end of that year
  • Miles don’t lose value when they’re redeemed for cash back.
  • You’ll miss out on pretty standard travel perks like travel insurance, and car rental damage protection.
  • The rewards structure lacks flexibility; you won’t be able to transfer your miles or use them to book travel.
  • Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase
  • No annual fee
  • Turn Miles into cash. Or redeem as a statement credit for your travel purchases like airfare, hotels, rideshares, gas stations, restaurants and more.
  • 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases. Then 17.24% - 28.24% Standard Variable Purchase APR will apply.
  • Discover could help you reduce exposure of your personal information online by helping you remove it from select people-search sites that could sell your data. It’s free, activate with the mobile app.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
  • Freeze your account in seconds with an on/off switch either on the mobile app or website to prevent new purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites. Activate for free.
  • Terms and conditions apply.

Image of Hilton Honors American Express Card

Hilton Honors American Express Card

  • Earn 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 in purchases on the Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Earn 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with hotels and resorts within the Hilton portfolio. Earn 5X Points per dollar on purchases at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. supermarkets, and at U.S. gas stations. Earn 3X Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card.

  • 7X Earn 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with hotels and resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • 5X Earn 5X Points per dollar on purchases at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. supermarkets, and at U.S. gas stations.
  • 3X Earn 3X Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card.

This card earns rewards in a terrific mix of everyday bonus categories, so it should be easy to rack up Hilton points even if you don’t spend a ton on hotel bookings. And since it charges no annual fee, it’s a great fit if you’re new to hotel cards and looking for a low-stakes starter option. Read our full Hilton Honors Amex card review .

  • Comes with automatic Silver Elite status, which includes a free fifth award night when you book at least four consecutive nights with points.
  • Earns rewards in three of the average person’s biggest spending categories, making it a terrific standalone option for earning Hilton points.
  • A higher-tier Hilton card would earn more on Hilton bookings and could be more lucrative for frequent guests, even with an annual fee.
  • You can only redeem points with Hilton and its partners. A general travel rewards card may offer more flexibility, allowing you to earn and redeem rewards with any hotel chain.
  • Earn 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with hotels and resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Earn 5X Points per dollar on purchases at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. supermarkets, and at U.S. gas stations.
  • Earn 3X Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card.
  • Enjoy complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status with your Card. Plus, spend $20,000 on eligible purchases on your Card in a calendar year and you can earn an upgrade to Hilton Honors Gold status through the end of the next calendar year.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees. Enjoy international travel without additional fees on purchases made abroad.
  • No Annual Fee.

Image of Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

  • Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $200 cash redemption value.

Earn unlimited 3X points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans. Earn 1X points on other purchases

  • 3X Earn unlimited 3X points on restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services and phone plans.
  • 1X Earn 1X points on other purchases

The Wells Fargo Autograph card is a great option for occasional travelers and households on the go looking to earn rewards on everyday purchases while avoiding an annual fee. It’s one of a few entry-level travel cards to offer high bonus rewards for dining at restaurants and the majority of your travel needs, including gas stations, transit, airfare and hotels. Plus, your rewards won’t lose value if you want to redeem them for a statement credit. Read our full Wells Fargo Autograph Card review .

  • Several popular travel and everyday categories come with boosted reward rates
  • Comes with one of the highest welcome bonuses for a no-annual-fee travel card
  • Unlike with traditional travel cards, you cannot transfer your points to airlines or hotels
  • Depending on your creditworthiness, you could end up with a high variable APR after the intro purchase APR period.
  • Select "Apply Now" to take advantage of this specific offer and learn more about product features, terms and conditions.
  • Earn unlimited 3X points on the things that really add up - like restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services, and phone plans. Plus, earn 1X points on other purchases.
  • $0 annual fee.
  • 0% intro APR for 12 months from account opening on purchases. 20.24%, 25.24%, or 29.99% variable APR thereafter.
  • Up to $600 of cell phone protection against damage or theft. Subject to a $25 deductible.
  • Redeem your rewards points for travel, gift cards, or statement credits. Or shop at millions of online stores and redeem your rewards when you check out with PayPal.
  • Find tickets to top sports and entertainment events, book travel, make dinner reservations and more with your complimentary 24/7 Visa Signature® Concierge.

Image of Citi Premier® Card

Citi Premier® Card

Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Other Hotels Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases

  • 3X Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Other Hotels
  • 3X Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • 1X Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases

The big draw of the Citi Premier Card is that you can earn bonus rewards on everyday expenses as opposed to just travel. A generous sign-up bonus also sweetens the deal, making this a solid travel card for everyday shoppers who want to pay a low annual fee. Read our full Citi Premier Card review .

  • Citi has a robust line-up of travel partners.
  • You can earn points on everyday purchases, making the card a good option for less frequent travelers.
  • Travel protections, like travel insurance, are not offered with this card.
  • Budget-conscious customers might balk at the annual fee.
  • Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel℠ portal through June 30, 2024.
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Other Hotels
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 60,000 ThankYou® Points are redeemable for $600 in gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases

Image of Bilt Mastercard®

Bilt Mastercard®

Intro offer is not available for this Wells Fargo credit card.

1X Points - 3X Points

3x points on dining 2x points on travel 1x points on other purchases Earn up to 1x points on rent payments without the transaction fee, up to 100,000 points each calendar year. When you make at least 5 posted transactions in a statement period using your Bilt Mastercard, you'll earn points on rent and qualifying net purchases.

  • 3X Points 3x points on dining
  • 2X Points 2x points on travel
  • 1X Points 1x points on other purchases
  • 1X Points Earn up to 1x points on rent payments without the transaction fee, up to 100,000 points each calendar year. When you make at least 5 posted transactions in a statement period using your Bilt Mastercard, you'll earn points on rent and qualifying net purchases.

Along with helping you avoid transaction fees and earn rewards when you use it to pay rent, this card boasts an extremely robust travel rewards program — especially for a no-annual-fee card. You can earn rewards on travel and dining and your points carry a high value whether you redeem through the Bilt travel portal or transfer to one of the issuer’s many airline and hotel transfer partners. Read our full Bilt Mastercard review .

  • It’s the only card that helps you avoid the fees typically associated with paying rent with a credit card.
  • Bilt earns some of the most valuable travel rewards out there thanks to the issuer’s long list of transfer partners.
  • You can only use rewards to cover rent, toward a future home down payment or for travel and shopping. Cash back isn’t an option.
  • It’s missing a sign-up bonus. Most competing travel cards — even those with no annual fee — offer at least a $200 bonus.
  • $0 Annual Fee.
  • Earn up to 1x points on rent payments without the transaction fee, up to 100,000 points each calendar year.
  • 2x points on travel.
  • 3x points on dining.
  • 1x points on other purchases.
  • Earn points when you make 5 transactions that post each statement period.
  • When renting at a Bilt Alliance property, you can choose to have your rent payments automatically reported by Bilt to the three major credit bureaus each month; Experian™, TransUnion™, and Equifax™.

Image of Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

  • Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy® 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines 2X points on all other eligible purchases

  • 6X Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®
  • 3X 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines
  • 2X 2X points on all other eligible purchases

Frequent Marriott guests looking for top-tier perks should love this card. Along with a terrific rewards rate on Marriott bookings and an annual free night award, you’ll enjoy generous annual credits for restaurant purchases and Marriott property stays, airport lounge access, elite night credits and more based on your spending. Read our full Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant review .

  • The card’s perks carry a ton of value and may even offset the card’s annual fee on their own if you take full advantage.
  • It’s one of the only hotel cards that includes both complimentary Priority Pass lounge access and credits for expedited airport security screening.
  • Unlocking some of the card’s best perks — like Five Suite Night Awards — requires a $60,000 annual spend, which may be tough to reach even for frequent Marriott guests.
  • Unless luxury perks are at the top of your wishlist, the annual fee may not be worth it and a lower-tier hotel card may offer more value overall.
  • $300 Brilliant Dining Credit: Each calendar year, get up to $300 (up to $25 per month) in statement credits for eligible purchases made on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card at restaurants worldwide.
  • With Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status, you can receive room upgrades, including enhanced views or suites, when available at select properties and booked with a Qualifying Rate.
  • Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines. 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Free Night Award: Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 85,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Each calendar year after spending $60,000 on eligible purchases on your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, you will be eligible to select a Brilliant Earned Choice Award benefit. You can only earn one Earned Choice Award per calendar year. See https://www.choice-benefit.marriott.com/brilliant for Award options.
  • $100 Marriott Bonvoy Property Credit: Enjoy your stay. Receive up to a $100 property credit for qualifying charges at The Ritz-Carlton® or St. Regis® when you book direct using a special rate for a two-night minimum stay using your Card.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®: Receive either a statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or a statement credit every 4.5 years after you apply for a five-year membership for TSA PreCheck® (up to $85 through a TSA PreCheck official enrollment provider) and pay the application fee with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Each calendar year with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card you can receive 25 Elite Night Credits toward the next level of Marriott Bonvoy® Elite status. Limitations apply per Marriott Bonvoy® member account. Benefit is not exclusive to Cards offered by American Express. Terms apply.
  • Enroll in Priority Pass™ Select, which offers unlimited access to over 1,200 lounges in over 130 countries, regardless of which carrier or class you are flying. This allows you to relax before or between flights. You can enjoy snacks, drinks, and internet access in a quiet, comfortable location.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on international purchases.
  • With Cell Phone Protection, you can be reimbursed, the lesser of, your repair or replacement costs following damage, such as a cracked screen, or theft for a maximum of $800 per claim when your cell phone line is listed on a wireless bill and the prior month's wireless bill was paid by an Eligible Card Account. A $50 deductible will apply to each approved claim with a limit of 2 approved claims per 12-month period. Additional terms and conditions apply. Coverage is provided by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.
  • $650 Annual Fee.

Image of Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

  • Receive 60,000 online bonus points - a $600 value - after you make at least $4,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.

2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases

  • 2X 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases
  • 1.5X 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases

If you do your banking with Bank of America, this card provides an intriguing opportunity for an earnings boost. The Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card provides generous rewards rates—2X points on dining and travel, with 1.5X points on all other purchases—as well as solid travel perks. Read our full Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card review .

  • The $95 annual fee is relatively affordable for this card category.
  • Rewards never expire as long as the account remains open and there’s no cap on earnings.
  • Attaining the highest rewards rate is not an easy feat, since you’ll need to hold significant funds in Bank of America accounts.
  • This card does not offer premium travel perks like lounge access.
  • Earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases. No limit to the points you can earn and your points don't expire as long as your account remains open.
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase. That means you could earn 2.5-3.5 points on travel and dining purchases and 1.87-2.62 points on all other purchases, for every $1 you spend.
  • Redeem for cash back as a statement credit, deposit into eligible Bank of America® accounts, credit to eligible Merrill® accounts, or gift cards or purchases at the Bank of America Travel Center.
  • Get up to $100 in Airline Incidental Statement Credits annually and TSA PreCheck®/Global Entry Statement Credits of up to $100, every four years.
  • Travel Insurance protections to assist with trip delays, cancellations and interruptions, baggage delays and lost luggage.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Low $95 annual fee.

Image of Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

Earn 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Earn 5x total points on flights through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases

  • 10x Earn 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • 5x Earn 5x total points on flights through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • 3x Earn 3x points on other travel and dining.
  • 1x Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases

The Chase Sapphire Reserve has a generous points structure and comes with a $300 annual travel credit among other perks. This card is well worth the $550 annual fee if used strategically by cardholders who spend enough in the card’s rewards categories and take advantage of the added benefits. Read our full Chase Sapphire Reserve review .

  • Points redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards are worth up to 50 percent more.
  • The annual statement credit of $300 can help offset the cost of the annual fee.
  • The high annual fee could be a deterrent for some new cardholders.
  • You won’t get as many luxury travel perks with this card as you would with some of its luxury card competitors.
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more

Image of Credit One Bank Wander® Card

Credit One Bank Wander® Card

  • Earn 10,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on eligible purchases in the first 90 days from your account opening and redeem for a $100 statement credit, gift cards, or travel.

Earn 10x points on eligible hotels and car rentals booked through the Credit One Bank travel partner site Earn 5x points on eligible travel, dining, and gas Earn 1x points on all other purchases

  • 10X Earn 10x points on eligible hotels and car rentals booked through the Credit One Bank travel partner site
  • 5X Earn 5x points on eligible travel, dining, and gas
  • 1X Earn 1x points on all other purchases

If you want to earn points on travel but have trouble qualifying for top-tier rewards cards, the Wander card is a solid option. Not only is this card available with only fair credit, but its rewards program is also quite generous, boasting a high rewards rate in several key travel categories, including gas, airfare and hotels. Read our full Credit One Wander Card review .

  • It’s one of the only travel rewards cards available with a fair credit score, making it a decent option if you want to earn travel rewards as you work on your score.
  • Its 10,000-point sign-up bonus (after you spend $1,000 in your first 90 days) is enough to completely offset the card’s annual fee in the first year.
  • Its annual fee is high compared to other cards you can get with a fair credit score, so it may not be the best fit if you prioritize building credit over earning rewards.
  • Other travel cards may offer better perks and value at this price level, so it may be worth working on your score with a lower-cost card before you focus on earning rewards.
  • Earn 10x points on eligible hotels and car rentals booked through the Credit One Bank travel site
  • Earn 5x points on eligible travel, dining, and gas
  • Earn 1x points on all other purchases
  • Redeem your reward points for statement credits, gift cards, merchandise, flights, hotels, and more
  • With $0 Fraud Liability, you won’t be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • Free Online Credit Score and Credit Report summary, terms apply
  • If you are a Covered Borrower under the Military Lending Act, you may get a different offer
  • See Rates & Fees

Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Please visit  AmericanExpress.com/benefitsguide  for more details. Underwritten by Amex assurance company.

The information about the American Express® Green Card and Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuers.

Compare Bankrate's best travel credit cards of 2024

A closer look at bankrate's top travel credit cards.

BEST FOR FLAT-RATE REWARDS

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  • Travel benefits
  • Alternatives

It offers an easy way to earn travel rewards, comes with a generous sign-up bonus and has several travel and purchase protections for a modest annual fee of $95. ( See Rates & Fees )

Travelers who want to earn rewards at a flat rate on all purchases and enjoy flexibility in how they redeem their miles.

Get a credit worth up to $100 for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® and transfer your miles to 15+ airline and hotel loyalty programs, often for a higher redemption value.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card offers a higher rewards rate in some everyday spending categories and potentially more valuable points. Your points are worth 1.25 cents each if you redeem for travel through Chase, versus the 1 cent per mile value you’d get with the Venture.

Best for luxury travel

If you can take advantage of all the high-value benefits packed in this card, it could be one of the most lucrative on the market. You’ll have a chance at a huge welcome offer, annual statement credits worth over $1,000 and access to Priority Pass Select lounges, Centurion lounges and Delta Sky Clubs (for Delta flights only).

Frequent travelers who enjoy luxury travel benefits and elite status.

Along with comprehensive lounge access, you can take advantage of an up to $200 airline fee credit, up to $200 in Uber Cash (benefit renews annually), an up to $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit and several other benefits.

The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offers a taste of luxury at a much lower cost than the Amex Platinum. For a $395 annual fee, travelers unlock a generous travel rewards rate, a higher rewards rate on general purchases, complimentary access to popular airport lounge memberships and valuable annual travel credits and anniversary miles ( See Rates & Fees ).

BEST FOR INTRO APR

Unlike some travel rewards cards, this card lets you redeem rewards for more than just typical travel costs like airfare and hotels. You can also redeem points for statement credits to cover purchases at zoos, art galleries, aquariums, travel agencies and more.

Points don’t expire as long as your account remains open and you can redeem for bookings with any airline or hotel anytime without blackout dates. You can also redeem points for statement credits to pay for travel or dining purchases.

The Bilt Mastercard is another solid no-annual-fee travel card, but it stands out by earning points on rent payments and helping you avoid processing fees typically associated with paying rent with a credit card. You’ll also earn bonus points for dining and travel and, unlike many no-annual-fee cards, you can transfer your points to high-value airline and hotel partners.

BEST FOR FOODIES

It offers high rewards rates and a ton of valuable perks for foodies and frequent travelers alike, including hundreds in annual dining, hotel and rideshare credits. These benefits make the card’s annual fee more than worth it.

Foodies and frequent travelers looking to earn rewards on everyday spending.

If the Amex Gold Card’s annual fee sounds high, consider the Chase Sapphire Preferred. It carries key travel perks, high travel and dining rewards rates, and a much lower annual fee.

BEST STARTER TRAVEL CARD

On top of an outstanding sign-up bonus, you get travel and purchase protections and a rewards program that earns points on both travel and everyday purchases, like online groceries and streaming services.

This is a great travel card for people with 2023 travel plans, as Chase recently updated its sign-up bonus to 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first three months of account opening. If you redeem these points for travel on Chase Ultimate Rewards, they're worth 1.25 cents each, making the whole bonus worth up to $750 in travel.

You’ll get up to $50 in annual statement credits for hotel stays booked through Chase and your points are worth 25 percent more when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through the Chase travel portal. 

The Citi Premier® Card not only has a comparable sign-up bonus and the same annual fee as the Sapphire Preferred, but also covers even more everyday categories, including  supermarkets and gas stations, potentially making it a better fit as a standalone rewards card. 

BEST FOR PRACTICAL PERKS

This card offers a great mix of practical, valuable perks, including complimentary lounge access and a high rewards rate for both travel and non-travel purchases. It also comes with a relatively low annual fee compared to other luxury travel cards ( See Rates & Fees ). 

Travelers looking to sample luxury benefits without paying over $400 in annual fees.

You’ll get $300 in annual credits for travel bookings made through Capital One Travel, 10,000 bonus miles each year on your account anniversary and access to over 1,300 airport lounges worldwide.

If a higher annual fee is no issue, consider the Platinum Card from American Express. It’s a top choice for frequent travelers thanks to its impressive welcome offer and luxury perks like annual travel credits, lounge access and hotel elite status.

BEST FOR NO ANNUAL FEE

This entry-level travel rewards card comes with a decent sign-up bonus, the chance to earn flat-rate miles on all purchases and the option to transfer miles to travel partners without owing an annual fee. ( See Rates & Fees )

Occasional travelers looking to earn flexible travel rewards without paying an annual fee.

BEST FOR COMPANION TICKETS

You can easily justify this card’s annual fee given the value of the annual companion certificate perk. The card also earns rewards on restaurant and U.S. supermarket purchases — two practical, popular categories — not just airfare.

Frequent travelers looking for a way to earn Delta SkyMiles and unlock a solid roster of Delta perks.

Along with the companion ticket, you can get up to $100 in statement credits to cover the cost of a Global Entry or TSA Precheck application fee, trip delay insurance and Delta Sky Club lounge access for $50 per person when flying Delta (effective Jan. 1, 2024, this benefit will no longer be available).

The Amex Green card could be a great alternative since it charges a lower annual fee ($150), lets you earn and redeem rewards on travel with any eligible airline (not just Delta) and offers credits for Loungebuddy lounge access and Clear Plus. You can even transfer points to Delta at a 1:1 ratio.

Learn more: Why credit card expert Holly Johnson loves Delta credit cards

BEST STARTER AIRLINE CARD

The card’s biggest perk — 3,000 bonus points each year after your cardmember account anniversary — could hold enough value to offset most of the card’s annual fee.

Southwest frequent flyers looking for a low-maintenance airline rewards card. 

The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card could offer better value overall, despite its $149 annual fee. It carries an annual $75 Southwest travel credit and 7,500 bonus points each year on your account anniversary — more than enough value to justify the higher fee.

Learn more: Why expert Tim Maxwell loves the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus

BEST FOR FIRST-YEAR VALUE

Discover will match every mile you earn at the end of your first year. Depending on how much you spend, this could give you a chance at a higher bonus value than you’d get with any other no-annual-fee rewards card.

Travelers who value simplicity will appreciate this card’s straightforward rewards rate and flexible redemption.

While this card is light on perks, it’s one of the few no-annual-fee travel cards that lets you redeem miles for cash back, travel and more without worrying about redemption values. Many cards require you to sacrifice rewards value if you opt for cash back instead of travel.

The Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card carries a more straightforward and still easy-to-reach welcome bonus. The VentureOne card also gives you the option of transferring miles to more than a dozen airline and hotel partners, which could increase the redemption value of your rewards.

BEST NO-ANNUAL-FEE HOTEL CARD

This card earns rewards not only on Hilton bookings, but also in several popular everyday spending categories. This makes it a solid standalone option for earning Hilton points even if you don’t spend a ton on travel.

As you might expect since it carries no annual fee, this card's perks are underwhelming, but it does come with automatic Hilton Honors Silver elite status, which unlocks benefits like a fifth night free on award stays and two free bottles of water per stay.

The American Express® Green Card could be more flexible since it earns rewards on a much wider variety of travel purchases, including airfare and bookings with any hotel, not just Hilton. You can also redeem points to cover bookings with multiple airlines and hotels or even transfer points to outside loyalty programs, including Hilton Honors.

Learn more: Why expert Holly Johnson loves the Hilton Honors American Express Card

BEST FOR GAS

This card does not charge foreign transaction fees and comes with valuable perks like rental car collision damage waiver coverage, roadside assistance and Visa Signature® Concierge benefits, which opens the door to additional features like access to Visa’s Luxury Hotel Collection.

BEST FOR EVERYDAY SPENDING

This mid-level travel card earns rewards at a high rate on both travel and everyday spending, making it a great standalone rewards option. It also comes with an annual hotel credit that can offset the card’s annual fee on its own.

Occasional travelers who want to earn travel rewards on everyday purchases like groceries, gas and dining.

 You’ll earn a $100 statement credit when you book a single hotel stay of $500 or more through Citi. The card also carries no foreign transaction fees.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred boasts fewer everyday bonus categories, but it may offer more valuable rewards. Chase points are worth 25 percent more than Citi points when you redeem for travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal.

Best for transfer partners

This card is a terrific choice for renters since it earns rewards and waives transaction fees when you use it to pay rent. It’s also a solid pick for beginner travelers since it offers high-value travel and dining points. Plus, it’s one of the few no-annual-fee cards to provide airline and hotel transfer partners — including American Airlines.

Long-term renters who want to earn travel rewards and minimize fees. It’s also a good fit for travelers who don’t like paying annual fees and can plan ahead. Since you earn double points on the first of every month for travel, dining and general purchases, you can earn outsized rewards not often found with other general-purpose travel cards. 

Along with stellar airline transfer partners, the Bilt card offers a solid collection of travel perks for a no-annual-fee card, including trip cancellation and interruption protection, trip delay reimbursement and other high-level travel protections.

BEST LUXURY HOTEL CARD

It comes with a slew of valuable perks that can help offset the annual fee and make travel more enjoyable, including complimentary Priority Pass lounge access and annual credits for eligible restaurant purchases.

Learn more: Best Marriott credit cards

BEST FOR EXPEDITED SECURITY SCREENING

The one-time sign-up bonus and an annual chance to earn up to $100 in travel statement credits enhance the value of this simple travel rewards credit card.

Frequent travelers who are Bank of America Preferred Rewards members can make the most of this card since you can boost your rewards rate by 25 to 75 percent depending on your savings.

Receive up to $100 in annual statement credits on airline incidentals like seat upgrades and baggage fees, plus up to $100 in statement credits to cover the cost of a TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee every four years.

BEST FOR POINT VALUES

The card comes loaded with short- and long-term value, including one of the most valuable sign-up bonuses on the market and a slew of perks, including annual travel credits and complimentary airport lounge access.

Frequent travelers who can take advantage of its top-of-the-line perks.

Points are worth 50 percent more when you redeem for travel with Chase and you can transfer 1:1 to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs. You’ll also unlock up to $300 in annual travel statement credits, access to over 1,300 Priority Pass airport lounges worldwide and up to $100 in statement credits every four years to cover the cost of Global Entry, NEXUS or TSA PreCheck.

The Capital One Venture X card offers some of the same key perks as the Sapphire Reserve at a much lower cost. Along with a generous rewards rate on both Capital One Travel and general purchases, the card boasts valuable, practical benefits like competitive airport lounge access , up to $300 in annual Capital One Travel credits and 10,000 bonus miles every year on your account anniversary. 

Best for fair credit

You’ll earn rewards at an impressive rate in practical everyday categories like travel, dining and gas, which is rare for a card available with only fair credit.

The card comes with a sign-up bonus you can redeem for a $100 statement credit, gift cards or for travel.

If you don’t mind putting down a refundable security deposit, consider a no-annual-fee secured card like the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured Credit Card *. It’s a unique secured card that lets you work on your credit score while earning rewards in a category of your choice (with travel just one of many popular options) as well as grocery stores and wholesale clubs.

Image of American Express® Green Card

American Express® Green Card

Best for everyday travel + transit

  • Who it’s for

This card offers terrific first-year value via its unique welcome offer, allowing you to earn even more rewards on travel and transit spending. 

The card’s Loungebuddy and CLEAR Plus credits should be handy even if you only fly occasionally.

Learn more: Is the American Express Green card worth it?

All information about the American Express® Green Card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com and has not been reviewed or approved by the issuer.

Travel credit cards allow cardholders to earn points or miles on a variety of purchases (typically travel-related), which are redeemable for travel bookings, statement credits, gift cards and more.

The best travel credit cards do more than help you foot the bill for your next flight — travel cards also offer perks to upgrade your entire travel experience. Trip insurance , annual travel credits, concierge services and lounge access are all common benefits. Airline and hotel co-branded credit cards sometimes offer specific discounts and perks for loyalty program members.

Co-branded travel cards vs. general travel cards

Travel credit cards are generally divided into two categories: co-branded travel cards and general travel cards. Co-branded cards are associated with a particular airline or hotel, while general travel cards offer more flexible reward opportunities. Here’s why and when you might want each.

What you get with co-branded travel credit cards

Co-branded travel cards tend to offer higher rewards rates on eligible travel purchases in exchange for limiting your reward redemption options to just one airline or hotel program . These cards may also feature more specific perks associated with the respective hotel or airline, such as free award nights, complimentary airline elite status or priority boarding — which general-purpose travel cards don’t often carry).

However, you won’t be able to use your rewards with a wide variety of different hotels and airlines like general-purpose cards allow. Plus, despite co-branded travel cards’ typically higher rewards rates, many brand-specific rewards tend to be worth less than the potential value of general-purpose cards’ points and miles.

When to get a co-branded travel card : When you often fly or stay with a specific airline or hotel and want to maximize your benefits with that brand.

What you get with general travel credit cards 

General travel cards earn rewards on various travel categories and aren’t limited to a particular airline or hotel. Such cards may lack some of the dedicated perks you’ll find on a co-branded travel card, such as in-flight discounts, but make up for this with rewards flexibility and broader perks like general travel credits, expedited security screening and wider airport lounge access. 

The top travel cards even let you transfer your points or miles to airline and hotel loyalty programs, often at a 1:1 rate. Redeeming with some airlines and hotels can even make your rewards more valuable than they would be if you redeemed with the card issuer.

When to get a general travel card : When you have no preferred airline or hotel and want the additional flexibility a general travel card offers. 

Pros and cons of travel credit cards

Although a well-chosen travel card can pay huge dividends, it might not be the right move for every traveler. Before you apply, take time to weigh the benefits versus the drawbacks of travel credit cards .

A travel credit card is almost always worth it for frequent travelers or anyone who wants to earn rewards toward their next vacation.

If you can save up airline miles, rack up points for free nights at hotels or get discounted travel through your credit card issuer, you’re on your way to significant travel savings. However, the right travel card for you will depend on your travel habits.

Frequent travelers

Naturally, the ideal candidate for a travel card is someone who travels a lot or plans to book several flights and hotel stays per year. However, in some cases, you don’t have to be a frequent traveler to reap the benefits of a travel rewards card. A number of cards offer good rewards rates on general purchases, such as the Capital One Venture Rewards Card (cardholders earn 2X miles).

Travel beginners

If you’re new to travel rewards, a good place to start is with a travel card that makes it easy to earn and redeem points, without requiring you to navigate a complex rewards program or worry about tiered rewards rates or varying point redemption values. 

Once you’ve gotten the hang of things, you can explore a travel card with a more complex rewards program that may require more legwork but also offer more rewards value.

Brand loyalists

If you tend to book travel with the same brands frequently or already belong to an airline or hotel loyalty program, a co-branded travel card can offer terrific value.  Airline- and hotel-specific rewards cards often earn a top rate on bookings with the brand as well as exclusive perks like lounge access and automatic elite status. 

The Hilton Honors Amex card and the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card are great examples of lucrative co-branded travel rewards cards.

Business travelers

Some of the most valuable travel credit cards are business cards . Whether you're a freelancer on the go or the CEO of a Fortune 500, the right travel credit card can help you earn high rewards rates on everyday business purchases. Examples include the Bank of America® Business Advantage Travel Rewards World Mastercard® credit card and the Capital One Spark Miles for Business .

International travelers

If you frequently travel abroad, a card with no foreign transaction fees like the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card or the Chase Sapphire Reserve is a great pick to help you avoid extra costs on overseas purchases. 

Plus, if you hate waiting in line at airport security or customs, a lot of travel cards offer statement credits to reimburse you for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fees.

Luxury travelers

If you’re looking for a luxury travel experience, consider a premium travel card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve or The Platinum Card from American Express. Luxury travel cards like these often charge a pretty penny but also offer a ton of value via perks like lounge access and annual travel credits. 

These perks not only make travel more comfortable, but also often carry enough value to offset the card’s cost on their own.

Still unsure if a travel credit card is right for you? Check out our Credit Card Spender Type Tool where you can get personalized credit card recommendations based on your credit score, spending habits and daily needs.

Additional travel credit card perks

Travel benefits may differ from card to card, but some of the most popular travel cards on the market may feature the following perks.

Elite status upgrades

Some cards offer complimentary upgrades or a head start toward a travel program’s elite status. For example, the American Express Platinum card lets you enroll in complimentary Gold Elite status for Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors loyalty programs. Climbing the loyalty status ranks could score you exceptionally valuable benefits such as additional rewards, room or seat upgrades, expedited services, and discounts or credits for in-flight or on-site purchases.

Travel insurance

Travel cards may offer various travel insurances , such as trip delay protection, trip cancellation insurance, lost baggage insurance or car rental insurance. These benefits aren’t worth anything until you need them, but you’ll be glad you have them when your flight is canceled or your luggage lost.

Expedited airport security service credits

Credits toward TSA PreCheck or Global Entry are a popular and common benefit on many travel cards. You can typically use this credit once every four years, which roughly corresponds to how long a TSA PreCheck or Global Entry membership lasts. Some cards may also provide an annual credit toward Clear Plus — another expedited security membership.

Travel purchase credits

Higher-end travel cards often offer annual statement credits toward travel purchases. For some travel cards, such as the Capital One Venture X, these statement credits can nearly offset the cost of the card itself.

Boosts on travel reward redemptions

Some travel cards will often boost the value of your rewards when you redeem them on eligible travel. Redeeming points with the Chase Sapphire Reserve and Sapphire Preferred through Chase Ultimate Rewards will boost your point value to 1.5 cents and 1.25 cents per point, respectively. However, boosted rewards value toward issuer travel portal redemptions are rare outside certain Chase Ultimate Rewards cards nowadays, so you may need to rely on general-purpose travel cards’ transfer partners to squeeze more than 1 cent out of each point or mile.

Airline benefits

Co-branded airline cards typically offer some airport and in-flight benefits on top of their reward-earning capabilities. These can include perks like discounts on in-flight purchases (usually 25 percent back on refreshments and WiFi), free checked bags , flight seating upgrades or priority boarding . 

Free hotel award nights

Co-branded hotel cards may include annual free hotel award nights as part of their benefits. Some cards also tack an extra complimentary awards night to your stay if you’ve booked a certain number of consecutive nights. These nights are typically capped at a certain value (sometimes based on the card or your elite status), and may be valuable enough to make up for some cards’ annual fees.

Airport lounge access

One of the most popular (and valuable) travel benefits featured on high-end and luxury travel cards is complimentary access to airport lounges. The lounges you gain access to depend on the card, though co-branded cards will often grant access to the lounge corresponding to the card’s airline. The Amex Platinum card currently offers the best airport lounge access .

Credit card points and miles are two of the key types of credit card rewards , along with cash back. As with cash back, you’ll earn points and miles by making purchases with your credit card, but you can typically redeem these rewards for travel, gift cards and more — not just statement credits.

Points and miles tend to be more flexible than cash back, but since their value depends on how you redeem them — and, in the case of travel redemptions, where you’re going, when you book, your fare class and more — it make take a bit more effort to make the most of them.

What are your points and miles worth?

Since many airlines and hotels use dynamic pricing models that continually optimize airfare and room prices, it can be hard to know exactly how much your rewards are worth without doing a little math.

Luckily, you don’t need to be a travel hacker to get a sense of this. Before you redeem, you can check your reward redemption value by dividing the cost of a plane or hotel booking in cash by its cost in points or miles. This will show you the cash value of your points or miles.

You can also compare this value to Bankrate’s latest point and valuations to get a sense of whether you’re getting a good deal. Bankrate collected data on hundreds of bookings across dozens of airline, hotel and credit card rewards programs and estimated how much each program’s rewards are worth on average .

Airline rewards values

The table below shows Bankrate’s estimated reward redemption value for a variety of popular airline loyalty programs. You’ll notice how widely this varies between airlines, with some offering close to 3 cents per point in average redemption value and others struggling to meet a 1-cent-per-point value.

Keep in mind, however, that these values are averages based on a variety of fare classes, destinations, booking periods and more. For example, while Bankrate estimates Delta SkyMiles carry an average redemption value of around 1.2 cents per mile, they could be worth more or less depending on the details of your booking. 

*Based on weighted average of median point/mile values across economy and first/business class fares.

Hotel rewards values

Like airline miles, hotel points fluctuate in value. The table below shows Bankrate’s estimated point values for some of the most popular hotel brands. 

As you can see, hotel points tend to be worth less than airline and credit card rewards on average, often carrying less than 1 cent per point in redemption value. That said, hotel loyalty programs sometimes offer more favorable exchange rates when you transfer rewards from a credit card rewards program. For example, you may be able to turn 1,000 credit card points into 2,000 hotel points (a 2:1 transfer ratio). 

*Based on median point values across budget, mid-tier and luxury hotel bookings.

Credit card program rewards values

Unlike hotel and airline rewards programs, credit card reward programs typically earn points or miles that offer a consistent redemption value when you use them with the issuer. Though the redemption value of your rewards may vary based on how you redeem, each redemption method should offer a consistent baseline value. 

Some credit card rewards programs may also allow you to transfer your points or miles to airline and hotel loyalty programs, which could boost their value considerably. For each major credit card rewards program, we estimate a baseline redemption value (assuming you book for travel with the issuer) and a Bankrate’s Value, which averages the program’s best-value transfer partners.

*Based on an average of the issuer’s five highest-value transfer partners (if available).

When to use rewards vs. cash

Here’s an example: We estimate American Airlines AAdvantage miles are worth 1.0 cents. If you book a seat in the main cabin on a one-way flight from Boston to Miami, and it costs either $139 or 21,500 miles, your miles are only worth $0.006 ($139 / 21,500 miles = $0.006). Since your miles for this flight are worth less than 1.0 cents, you may want to save your miles and pay cash for this flight.

But if you book a first-class seat on the same flight for $433 or 31,500 miles, your miles are now worth $0.013 ($433 / 31,500 = $0.013). Since 1.3 cents is higher than our latest valuation, you’re coming out ahead if you use your miles to pay for this flight.

Tips on choosing the best travel credit card for you

The right travel credit card for you will carry features and benefits that give you the best value. To help you narrow down your choices, here are some questions to ask yourself that can guide you toward the card that fits you best:

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5 steps to choose the best travel card

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5 benefits you need from a travel credit card in 2023

Silhouettes of passengers waiting at an airport in front of window

Traveler’s guide to the best frequent flyer programs

How do you prefer to travel.

Knowing whether your travel expenses lean toward airfare, hotel stays, or a mix of other travel will help you decide whether you should get an airline card, hotel card or general-purpose travel card. A co-branded airline or hotel credit card may be a good fit if you mostly travel with a certain brand and want exclusive privileges to enhance your experience. However, a general-purpose travel card is better if you prefer to keep your travel options open.

What do you want from your rewards?

You may have to pick between simplicity and maximum value when comparing cards and rewards programs. Many travel cards offer a standard point or mile redemption value of 1 cent when you redeem toward travel through the issuer portal, but some cards can get you a higher redemption value when you transfer rewards to airline or hotel partners. However, it’s common for many travel reward programs to reduce the redemption value toward non-travel options or limit these redemption options altogether. If you prefer simplicity over maximizing rewards, you may want to consider cards that allow you to redeem points or miles at an equal 1-cent value toward general travel purchase credits, cash back or other non-travel options.

What are your biggest expenses?

A general travel card with a flat rewards rate could be a good choice if you want a simple way to earn rewards on everyday spending, you want to stick with a single rewards card or if you make a lot of travel bookings with third-party booking sites. But if you don’t mind juggling multiple cards to maximize your earnings, cards that earn bonus rewards in specific spending categories could be far more lucrative. Take a look at your typical spending and find which travel categories (like airfare, hotel stays, gas or transit) and other categories (like dining, groceries or entertainment) you spend the most in and choose a card that offers a high rewards rate in those categories. Just make sure you factor in rewards spending caps.

What do you prioritize when traveling?

High rewards rates and valuable travel perks are the biggest reasons to get a travel card, but many of the best cards carry a high annual fee. You can probably stick with a no-annual-fee travel card (or at least one with around a $99 fee) if you’re mainly focused on earning rewards, but you may have to pay up to $500 or more for luxurious perks like airport lounge access, comprehensive travel insurance and hundreds of dollars in annual travel credits . Perks like free checked bags, hotel amenity credits, priority boarding, booking upgrades and complimentary elite status often only come with premium co-branded hotel and airline cards.

When are you traveling abroad next?

If you travel overseas, check to see if the card you’re considering charges a foreign transaction fee. And since some credit cards aren’t as widely accepted as others, you’ll also want to make sure your credit card will work when traveling overseas . For example, Discover and American Express cards may not be as widely accepted abroad as Visa cards and Mastercards. If a trip is coming up in the next three to six months, keep an eye out for the big $200 to $1,000+ sign-up bonuses travel cards are known for. As a rule of thumb, the higher the annual fee, the higher the sign-up bonus should be.

Here’s how a Bankrate editor chose his travel card

With all of this advice in mind, let’s see how a credit card expert made their pick. Here’s Bankrate editor Nouri Zarrugh on how he chose his travel card:

When it comes to earning rewards, I’ve always stuck with cash back cards, preferring the simplicity of knowing exactly how much my rewards are worth and the ease of redeeming for statement credits. Recently, though, I decided I wanted to travel a bit more frequently, and I figured a new travel rewards card could be a great tool to help me earn free trips. When choosing the right card for me, a few major points of consideration stood out: Cost: I didn’t feel like I traveled enough to justify a huge annual fee. Simplicity : I wanted to stick with a single, streamlined travel card and not worry about juggling multiple rewards programs or rewards rates. Perks : While I didn’t need anything too fancy, I thought it might be nice to have a perk like TSA Precheck included, since I hate waiting in long airport security lines. To my surprise, the card that stood out most was the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card. Though it carried an intimidating annual fee of $395 ( See Rates & Fees ), I found this cost was more than worth it once I dug into the details. In fact, its benefits were so valuable, I barely needed to worry about offsetting the cost.  Two of its annual perks — a $300 Capital One travel credit and 10,000 bonus miles every year on my account anniversary — are valuable enough to offset the fee on their own. This means as long as I take one flight a year, I can basically break even on the card. Any rewards or perks I get beyond that feel like pure upside. It’s a huge bonus, then, that the card also includes practical benefits like Priority Pass lounge access and a credit of up to $100 toward the cost of Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. While I’ve never frequented airport lounges, I see these privileges as essentially free considering the value of the annual travel credit and bonus miles. So, I figure, why not take advantage?  For me, the Venture X strikes the perfect balance: A flat rewards rate that makes it easy to earn miles on everything I buy; flexible redemption through Capital One or via transfer to airlines and hotels, and practical perks I know I’ll use when I travel. I never imagined I’d have a $395 travel card in my wallet, but for me, it’s at worst a coupon for a flight every year, which can nudge me to take that next trip. — Nouri Zarrugh, Editor, Bankrate

Expert advice on travel credit cards

Premium travel cards tend to charge hefty annual fees, so it’s important to know how to maximize your rewards and perks. Otherwise, a travel card could end up being a money pit. Here are a few pointers for making the most of your travel card: 

Combine cards to maximize rewards

Knowing how much you spend in different categories and which merchants are eligible for rewards will help you earn more rewards and build an optimized stack of rewards cards. 

A flat-rate card is often a great starting point. For example, if you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred card and you often buy groceries at Walmart and Costco, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card can earn 1.5 percent cash back on those purchases instead of 1X points. Then, you can maximize your Freedom Unlimited rewards spending by redeeming its Chase rewards through the Sapphire Preferred for more value toward travel.

Expert Insight:

“For a long time, I’ve used a combination of Chase credit cards known as the Chase trifecta for all my family’s spending…. [I] don’t typically use my Sapphire Reserve for everyday spending and bills. Since it only offers 1X points on non-bonus category spending, I use my Freedom Unlimited to make sure I earn a minimum of 1.5 percent cash back on everything I buy.” “I use each card strategically to earn as much in rewards as possible, then I pool them in my Sapphire Reserve account to redeem them for airfare, excursions, hotels and more.” — Holly D. Johnson — Award-winning personal finance writer and Bankrate contributor: Why I love the Chase Sapphire Reserve

Maximize your rewards value with transfer partners and issuer travel

Save your rewards for the most valuable redemption options. Travel points and miles often lose value toward non-travel options like cash back, so you’ll want to redeem your rewards for travel through the issuer portal for at least 1 cent per point or mile. However, transferring your rewards to the right airline or hotel partner program is usually worth the extra effort since it could net you even more value.

Expert Insight

“When I redeem my points through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program, the most I can get is 1.25 cents apiece, which is pretty good. However, if I transfer them to a partner airline’s loyalty program, I will often get much more. For example, I can transfer my points to United Airlines’ MileagePlus and use them to pay for flights. When I do, I generally get a value of 2 or more cents per point — in line with Bankrate estimates that Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth around 2 cents apiece on average when used with the right transfer partner.” — Margaret Wack — Personal finance expert and Bankrate contributor: Why I love the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Make the most of your travel perks

Travel benefits are one of the main reasons to get a travel card, and are often key to making up a card’s annual fee. Be sure to read the fine print to make sure you can take full advantage of these offers. For example, one card’s travel credit may apply to any travel purchase, including airfare, while another card’s may only cover costs like baggage fees or in-flight purchases. 

“This is the year to take inventory of your credit cards and make sure they’re serving you well. If you’re paying an annual fee, look for a card with recurring benefits. Whether it’s annual free nights, waived luggage fees or elite status benefits, these perks can offset your annual fee and make your travels more pleasant.” “Despite putting minimal spending on my Hilton Honors Amex Aspire card, I keep renewing it every year. That’s because the card provides automatic Hilton Diamond elite status, which can easily offset the $550 annual fee. Recurring card benefits like [these] can save you a lot on travel and are worth considering when shopping for a new credit card.” — Ariana Arghandewal — Travel rewards expert and Bankrate contributor: Five benefits you need from a travel credit card

Plan for the sign-up bonus

The best travel cards come with generous welcome offers, but these bonuses may require a high spend in a short timeframe. That’s why it’s important to consider whether the spending requirement fits with your typical spending habits or whether you need to plan purchases to meet the requirement. Just be sure not to overextend yourself or take on debt you can’t pay back just to earn a bonus — interest and fees can easily eat through any value you’d get from the bonus.

“While most people are focused on enjoying the fall season, I’d like to note that now is an ideal time to sign up for a new credit card with an eye toward holiday travel. Despite conflicting economic signals, credit card sign-ups are still booming. It’s a competitive market; you can use that to your advantage.” “Travel costs remain high this year, along with prices on just about everything else. Earning rewards from a new credit card could be another useful inflation-busting strategy as we head toward the always-expensive holiday season.” — Ted Rossman — Senior credit cards industry analyst at Bankrate: Best sign-up bonuses for holiday travel

Look out for limited-time offers, partner perks and other benefits

Keeping an eye out for limited-time offers like extraordinarily high sign-up bonuses, perks with partner services (like rideshares or delivery services) and other reward-earning opportunities is a great way to squeeze the most value from your travel card. Issuers sometimes provide shopping and travel portals and card-linked reward programs for select purchases (like for pre-paid dining or participating merchant spending), which can help you bank extra rewards.

“Keep an eye on your email inbox and rewards portal for any limited-time promotions your issuer may be offering. Many American Express cards feature Amex Offers, which offer perks like statement credits for spending a certain amount on specific hotels and other retailers. Other cards, like the Capital One Venture X, also have occasional promotional offers, such as a credit for 5 percent back on VRBO rentals.” — Lori Zaino — Travel expert and Bankrate contributor: How to maximize credit cards for cheaper accommodations this holiday season

Track your spending and rewards each account statement

That way, you can track your favorite stores’ and services’ merchant category codes (MCCs) to fine-tune your spending habits for maximum rewards. If you notice your expenses changing, this practice may also help you notice whether you need to change which rewards cards you carry.

“The first step to optimizing your spending is to take the time to collect the MCCs of stores you frequently shop at. During the process, you might find that some stores in the same chain may have different MCCs, depending on their primary inventory. Even different counters or sections in the same department store may carry different MCCs. You can use this to your advantage if you know one location near you will provide a better cash back rate than the other. These “loopholes” can provide great opportunities to reap cash back on purchases that typically wouldn’t earn rewards.” — Garrett Yarbrough — Writer and credit cards expert at Bankrate: Merchant category codes: How to earn more cash back

When evaluating the best travel cards, we consider a mix of factors, including how cards score in our proprietary card rating system and whether cards offer features that fit the priorities of a diverse group of cardholders, from earning rewards in popular categories to scoring a large sign-up bonus or high-value perks. Whenever possible, we also feature cards that are available at various credit levels and price points. 

We analyzed over 150 of the most popular cards and scored each based on its rewards rate, estimated annual earnings, welcome bonus value, APR, fees, perks and more to determine whether it belonged in this month’s roundup of the best travel cards.

Here are some of the key factors that we considered:

Great rewards value

The primary criteria for a rewards-earning card’s rating is its rewards value. This includes the card’s average rewards rate, estimated annual rewards earnings, sign-up bonus value and reward redemption value.

To estimate a card’s average annual rewards earnings, we first calculate its average rewards rate based on how much it earns in different bonus categories and how closely its categories align with the average person’s spending habits. In other words, we assess whether the card earns rewards at a high rate in the most popular spending categories. 

We use consumer spending data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to get a reliable third-party measure of people’s spending habits. The most recent BLS data estimates average total spending in 2022 was $72,967 per consumer. We then narrow our focus to which purchases are likely to be put on a credit card and earn rewards, subtracting expenditures like housing, vehicle purchases and education. This gives us a total “chargeable” annual spend of around $25,500.  

This includes the following spending by category:

  • Groceries: $5,700
  • Dining out: $3,600
  • Entertainment: $2,400
  • Gas: $3,100
  • Apparel and services: $1,900

Using this data, we assign a weighting to each of a card’s bonus categories. For example, a card’s grocery rewards rate receives a 22 percent weighting based on how much of the average person’s budget is spent on groceries.

We also estimate the redemption value of points or miles from various issuer, airline and hotel rewards programs.

This weighting and rewards valuation allows us to estimate a card’s average annual rewards earnings — how many points or miles you’d earn with a given card if your spending was about average and you used the card for all of your purchases — as well as what those points are worth. We also use point valuations to determine a card’s sign-up bonus value

With these calculations complete, we assign each card a score based on how its average rewards earnings, sign-up bonus value, rewards rate and redemption value stack up against other rewards cards.

The better these values, the higher its score will be, making it more worthy of inclusion in our list and increasing its potential ranking.

Reasonable rates and fees

We also score cards based on how much it costs to keep them in your wallet or carry a balance. 

To start, each card is scored based on whether it offers an intro APR and how its ongoing APR compares to the rates available on other rewards cards. However, the latter rating only has a slight influence on the card’s score and whether the card is included in our list, since rewards card users generally try to avoid carrying a balance.

More important to both a card’s score and its inclusion in our list is how its annual fee influences its overall value. We consider a card’s annual fee in two ways — how it ranks relative to the fees you’ll find on other cards in the category and how it impacts a card’s overall rewards value. 

Cards with an annual fee will always be at a slight disadvantage in our scoring system since annual fees inherently cut into your rewards value. However, if a card offers terrific value via its ongoing rewards and perks, it can earn a high score and a spot in our list even if it carries a high annual fee. After all, the highest rewards rates and most valuable perks are often found on cards with annual fees. 

With this in mind, we rate a card based primarily on how its ongoing rewards value and ongoing perk value (such as annual credits or bonuses) stack up against those of other cards in the category when you subtract annual fees.

That said, we strive to include as many no-annual-fee options in our list as possible since many people would rather not worry about offsetting fees, even if a card carries impressive rewards and perks.

Redemption flexibility

Rewards cards may make it easy to earn a lot of points, miles or cash back, but how easy is it to use those rewards? After all, if it takes a ton of effort to redeem rewards or you can only redeem rewards in a couple of ways, a card may be more trouble than it’s worth. 

As such, we rate each card’s flexibility based on the restrictions it imposes on earning and redeeming rewards. We factor this rating into a card’s overall score and consider it when deciding on a card’s inclusion in our list. 

Flexibility factors include whether a card only allows you to earn a high rewards rate on only a small amount of spending or requires you to meet a certain earning threshold before you can redeem rewards. We also examine whether your points are worth less when you opt for some redemption options over others and whether a card gives you the flexibility to transfer rewards to travel partners.

Valuable perks

We also score each card’s set of features – its perks and benefits — against five tiers of features to provide a rating. 

We break down these tiers as follows:

  • Tier 1 includes fewer features than even standard credit cards (for example, an ultra-streamlined card that offers basic utility and next to nothing in the way of ancillary benefits). 
  • Tier 2 includes the benefits you’d expect on standard Visa or Mastercard credit cards, such as free access to your credit score, car rental insurance and $0 liability for fraudulent charges. 
  • Tier 3 includes “prime card” or better-than-average card features like cellphone insurance, lost luggage insurance, concierge services and purchase protection. 
  • Tier 4 includes luxury features such as airport lounge access, elite status with an airline or hotel and credits for expedited security screening membership programs. 
  • Tier 5 includes the sort of exemplary benefits you’ll find on top-tier luxury cards, such as high-value travel credits, cardholder memberships and other unique and valuable perks.

In evaluating the best cards, we tend to favor cards that offer at least Tier 3 benefits, unless they include other unique features that could make up for less-impressive perks.

In the news: What to expect for upcoming holiday travel

Predicting post-pandemic travel trends — and the best ways to save money on that travel — has been a challenge, especially considering the impact of inflation and changes in the travel card, airline and lodging markets. Although 2022 was supposedly the year of “revenge travel” after pandemic travel restrictions, a recent Bankrate survey found that more people are planning an overnight trip during the holidays. 

Bankrate expert Ted Rossman says this outcome is in line with the increase in flights and short-term rental stays compared to 2022 data. Thankfully, he says, flight cancellations and airline fares have decreased since last year; however, some travel rewards cards have started increasing restrictions on popular perks like airport lounge access and expedited security screening credits. 

Our Bankrate survey data found inflation has caused most people to adjust their holiday travel plans, such driving instead of flying and scaling back their trip itinerary. Similarly, you may be able to save some money (and headache) by re-evaluating your travel, redeeming your credit card rewards toward travel and utilizing other travel card features like travel insurance, airport benefits and hotel perks. 

For more information on ways to maximize your money on upcoming travel, check out Bankrate's Travel Toolkit .

Have more questions for our credit cards editors? Feel free to send us an email , find us on Facebook , or Tweet us @Bankrate .

More information on travel credit cards

Frequently asked questions about travel credit cards, are travel credit cards worth it.

Travel cards can be well worth it since they often carry exclusive travel perks like credits for airfare, hotel stays, expedited airport security services and more, as well as complimentary airport lounge access and airline or hotel privileges (like complimentary elite status and discounts). 

However, many of the best travel credit cards come with annual fees. It’s important to at least offset the cost of these cards by taking advantage of the various travel perks and features included on the card. For example, The Platinum Card from American Express offers around $1,700 in yearly credits but requires a $695 annual fee. If you don’t use $695 worth of perks or rewards, then the card is costing you more than it’s worth.

If you don’t travel frequently enough to justify the price tag on a premium travel credit card, it might be better to go with a no-annual-fee travel card or even a cash back or general rewards credit card.

What credit score is needed for a travel credit card?

It’s possible to get a travel credit card with bad or fair credit, but most travel rewards cards are geared toward people with good or excellent credit (a FICO score of at least 670, or a VantageScore of at least 661).

Do travel miles or points expire?

Even though many major credit cards earn rewards that don’t expire, you may lose your points and miles if your account closes or isn’t in good standing. However, some co-branded cards’ rewards may expire if you don’t earn or redeem rewards within a certain timeframe (typically 12 to 36 months after the rewards are earned).

Check out our guide to credit card rewards expiration for a thorough breakdown of several popular issuers’ policies.

Are points or miles better on a credit card?

Whether points or miles offer better value will depend on the specific rewards program and how you redeem rewards. One airline loyalty program may earn miles that offer less than 1 cent each in average redemption value while another program’s points may offer close to 3 cents each on average. Similarly, a hotel card’s points may be worth less than half of a credit card issuer’s rewards points. Some programs offer points with only average baseline redemption value but high value when transferred to a partner airline or hotel. 

Ask the experts: Is it a good idea to have multiple travel credit cards?

Thomas Nitzsche

Stephanie Zito

Erica Sandberg

Financial Educator, Debt and Credit

Whether you should have multiple travel credit cards depends on several factors, including your brand affinity, frequency of travel and ability to pay off your cards in full each month. As a credit counselor, I see many people carrying credit card debt at high interest rates while continuing to make charges to the account for the sake of earning rewards. They lose far more than they earn each month. Having more than one travel credit card could make sense for you if you’re able to maximize your earnings by strategizing spending across each card. Just take into account annual fees and actual interest paid.

Contributor, Personal Finance

If you’re up for managing multiple cards and their benefits, then there are definitely big reward payouts to be had. But if the thought of multiple cards is overwhelming, it’s also a good strategy to have one or two more flexible cards and focus on maximizing your earnings and redemptions until it becomes second nature.

Contributor, Credit Cards

Definitely! I currently have two travel credit cards. In addition to the Chase card that I use for my United Airlines purchases, I have the Capital One Venture card for all other airlines. I earn a solid amount of miles on everything I buy with it, so it's an easy go-to for non-travel related expenses.

Article sources

We use primary sources to support our work. Bankrate’s authors, reporters and editors are subject-matter experts who thoroughly fact-check editorial content to ensure the information you’re reading is accurate, timely and relevant.

“ Consumer Expenditures 2022 ” Bureau of Labor Statistics. Accessed on December 13, 2023.

* See the online application for details about terms and conditions for these offers. Every reasonable effort has been made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. After you click on the offer you desire you will be directed to the credit card issuer's web site where you can review the terms and conditions for your selected offer.

Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, is accurate as of the publish date. All products or services are presented without warranty. Check the bank’s website for the most current information.

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Credit Cards

A complete guide to the Capital One travel portal

Carissa Rawson

Allie Johnson

Allie Johnson

“Verified by an expert” means that this article has been thoroughly reviewed and evaluated for accuracy.

Robin Saks Frankel

Robin Saks Frankel

Published 5:50 a.m. UTC Jan. 16, 2024

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Featured Image

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You may know Capital One as a company that offers credit cards, car loans and bank accounts, but they also have a travel portal that allows you to book flights, hotels, rental cars and luxury vacations. For eligible Capital One cardholders, booking through the Capital One travel portal can be an excellent way to earn and redeem Capital One miles. Let’s take a look at the Capital One travel portal, how it works and who has access to its perks. 

  • The Capital One travel portal is accessible to cardholders of more than 15 different Capital One cards. 
  • Eligible cards will earn extra rewards on their Capital One travel bookings. 
  • Features of the Capital One travel portal include price drop protection and price matching. 
  • Capital One miles can be earned and redeemed through the Capital One travel portal. 

How to book travel through the Capital One travel portal

Booking travel through the Capital One travel portal is simple. To do so, simply navigate to the Capital One travel portal website . Then log in to your Capital One account. 

Once logged in, you’ll be directed to the site’s home page. 

travel card 1 6

From there, you can search for flights, hotels and rental cars for any travel you have planned. Just enter your search parameters, such as travel dates and destination, to get a list of booking options. 

Your search results will vary depending on what type of travel you want to book. For example, if you’re searching for a hotel, Capital One will bring up a dynamic map and a list of properties that match your filters.

travel card 1 6

Once you’ve perused available options, you can make a selection that suits your needs. You’ll then go through the checkout process, which includes filling in your personal details and payment information. Note that you’ll need to use your eligible Capital One card to pay. 

Who can use the portal?

The Capital One travel portal is accessible to those with an eligible Capital One credit card. These include:

  • Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card * The information for the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
  • Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card * The information for the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
  • Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card * The information for the Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
  • Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card * The information for the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
  • Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card * The information for the Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
  • Capital One Spark 2X Miles * The information for the Capital One Spark 2X Miles has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
  • Capital One Venture X Business Card * The information for the Capital One Venture X Business Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

You’ll want to be aware that not all Capital One cards provide access to the travel portal. For example, the Capital One Platinum Credit Card * The information for the Capital One Platinum Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer. , which is designed to help build credit, does not offer this feature. 

Is the portal worth using?

There are a few factors to consider when deciding whether or not to use the Capital One travel portal for a booking. 

First, depending on which Capital One card you hold, you may be able to earn big rewards by booking your travel through the portal. For example, the Capital One Venture X earns 2 miles per $1 on purchases, 5 miles per $1 on flights booked through Capital One Travel and 10 miles per $1 on hotels and rental cars booked via Capital One Travel. 

Capital One miles can be redeemed in a variety of ways, but are worth one cent each toward travel, which means you’re effectively getting 10% back on eligible bookings. 

travel card 1 6

That being said, many hotel and rental car companies limit the benefits you’ll receive if you choose to book through a third party (such as the travel portal). This can mean you lose out on perks such as bonus points and the benefits of any elite status that you’ve earned. However, this varies by hotel, so you might want to check before you book.

How to maximize your Capital One travel benefits through the portal

Capital One has built a robust portal that provides value to its customers. This is especially true when it comes to booking flights. The flight search function includes a handy calendar of prices to show you at a glance when fares are high.

travel card 1 6

Capital One has also partnered with the travel app Hopper to give customers free price prediction tools. When searching, the portal will let you know whether you should book or wait for a better price.

travel card 1 6

Even better, if you book a flight when recommended by Capital One, you’re automatically enrolled in price drop protection for 10 days. If the price goes down during that time frame, you’ll get a refund of up to $50. 

You can also choose to set an alert for your flight, which will notify you when the price changes. Finally, if you’re not ready to book but are worried that the price will increase, you can pay a small fee to freeze the cost of your fare so you can return later to book.

Other benefits associated with the Capital One travel portal include access to the Lifestyle Collection and the Premier Collection. If you have an eligible Capital One card, you’ll be able to book specialty hotels with exclusive benefits such as room upgrades, late checkout and experience credits. 

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Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Welcome Bonus

  • 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening – that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.

Regular APR

Credit score.

Credit Score ranges are based on FICO® credit scoring. This is just one scoring method and a credit card issuer may use another method when considering your application. These are provided as guidelines only and approval is not guaranteed.

Editor’s Take

  • 15 billing cycles of intro APR financing on both new purchases and on qualifying balance transfers.
  • Earn an unlimited 1.5 points per $1 on purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees so it’s a good choice to use abroad.
  • Points must be redeemed towards eligible travel and dining purchases for maximum redemption value.
  • You can’t transfer rewards to airline or hotel partners.

Card Details

  • Earn unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don’t expire as long as your account remains open.
  • Use your card to book your trip how and where you want – you’re not limited to specific websites with blackout dates or restrictions.
  • Redeem points for a statement credit to pay for travel or dining purchases, such as flights, hotel stays, car and vacation rentals, baggage fees, and also at restaurants including takeout.
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 18.24% – 28.24% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee applies to all balance transfers.
  • If you’re a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase. That means instead of earning an unlimited 1.5 points for every $1, you could earn 1.87-2.62 points for every $1 you spend on purchases.
  • Contactless Cards – The security of a chip card, with the convenience of a tap.
  • This online only offer may not be available if you leave this page or if you visit a Bank of America financial center. You can take advantage of this offer when you apply now.

Quick guide to Capital One rewards

Different Capital One cards earn different types of rewards. Some cards earn cash back while others earn miles. 

Capital One miles can be redeemed in a variety of ways, including transfers to Capital One hotel and airline partners. This is generally the most valuable method of redeeming miles, but you can also redeem them for statement credits against travel purchases that you’ve made. While this isn’t typically the best way to redeem Capital One rewards, it can be useful if there are no reward options available for the dates you want to travel.

Finally, Capital One miles can also be used for bookings within the Capital One travel portal. You’ll be able to redeem them at a rate of one cent each — but you’d be better off using your card to pay, then redeeming miles against your purchase. This allows you to earn rewards on your booking before wiping away the charges. 

Other ways to redeem miles include gift cards, entertainment and cash, but you’ll want to be wary of doing so as you won’t get as much value from your rewards this way as you would with travel redemptions. 

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

The Capital One travel portal works with many different airlines, including Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Frontier Airlines, Spirit Airlines and JetBlue. 

However, you won’t see flights from Southwest Airlines on the Capital One travel portal. Instead, you’ll want to search directly with the airline to find these tickets.

Capital One miles don’t expire as long as you have an eligible Capital One credit card open. If you plan to close a Capital One credit card account, make sure to use or transfer any accumulated miles first.

Unlike hotels and rental cars, airlines generally don’t penalize those who book through a third party. This means you’ll be able to enter your loyalty program number and earn rewards on flights booked through the Capital One travel portal.

Many of the best credit cards on the market offer a statement credit (up to $100) that will reimburse you for the cost of TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, two popular trusted traveler programs that can help you speed through the airport. This includes Capital One cards such as the Capital One Venture X rewards credit card and the Capital One Venture Rewards credit card. 

Making a booking through the Capital One travel portal doesn’t automatically entitle you to entry into airport lounges. However, certain Capital One credit cards offer this as a benefit. For example, those who have the Capital One Venture X rewards credit card or the Capital One Venture X Rewards Business card receive a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership (enrollment required) and unlimited access to Capital One lounges for themselves and two guests.

*The information for the Capital One Platinum Credit Card, Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card, Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Spark 2X Miles, Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, Capital One Venture X Business Card and Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Blueprint. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Blueprint is an independent publisher and comparison service, not an investment advisor. The information provided is for educational purposes only and we encourage you to seek personalized advice from qualified professionals regarding specific financial decisions. Past performance is not indicative of future results.

Blueprint has an advertiser disclosure policy . The opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Blueprint editorial staff alone. Blueprint adheres to strict editorial integrity standards. The information is accurate as of the publish date, but always check the provider’s website for the most current information.

Carissa Rawson

Carissa Rawson is a credit cards and award travel expert with nearly a decade of experience. You can find her work in a variety of publications, including Forbes Advisor, Business Insider, The Points Guy, Investopedia, and more. When she's not writing or editing, you can find her in your nearest airport lounge sipping a coffee before her next flight.

Allie is a journalist with a passion for money tips and advice. She's been writing about personal finance since the Great Recession for online publications such as Bankrate, CreditCards.com, MyWalletJoy and ValuePenguin. She's also written personal finance content for Discover, First Horizon Bank, The Hartford, Travelers and Synovus.

Robin Saks Frankel is a credit cards lead editor at USA TODAY Blueprint. Previously, she was a credit cards and personal finance deputy editor for Forbes Advisor. She has also covered credit cards and related content for other national web publications including NerdWallet, Bankrate and HerMoney. She's been featured as a personal finance expert in outlets including CNBC, Business Insider, CBS Marketplace, NASDAQ's Trade Talks and has appeared on or contributed to The New York Times, Fox News, CBS Radio, ABC Radio, NPR, International Business Times and NBC, ABC and CBS TV affiliates nationwide. She holds an M.S. in Business and Economics Journalism from Boston University. Follow her on Twitter at @robinsaks.

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Condé Nast Traveler

The Best Travel Credit Cards, For Beginners, Pros, and Everyone in Between

L ooking for the best travel credit card? That's easy—there’s just one issue: choosing which one to go with. There’s no shortage of travel rewards credit cards out there, and while having plenty of options is great for consumers, it can also make things a little confusing. The truth is, there’s no single consensus pick. However, there are some cards that stand out above the rest. Below, we’ve outlined our top choices and exactly why they made the cut—plus an idea or two on how to spend the welcome bonuses with some of our favorite hotels and airlines.

This article has been updated with new information since its original publish date.

Condé Nast Traveler has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Condé Nast Traveler and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Compensation does not impact how or where cards appear on the site. We don't review or include all companies, or all available products. Moreover, the editorial content on this page was not provided by any of the companies mentioned and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are entirely those of Condé Nast Traveler's editorial team.

What are the benefits of a travel credit card?

For many, the driving factor in opening a travel credit card is the ability to earn points that can later be turned into free flights or hotel stays—but the best travel credit cards also offer perks like  free night certificates ,  elite status , trip delay protection, and annual travel credits that are pretty motivating, too.

Is a travel credit card worth the annual fee?

The answer is almost always yes, thanks to their generous rewards structures, flexible redemption options, and travel perks—provided you can use them. Going through a list of these features is a great place to start when looking for your perfect match, whether you’re just getting acquainted with the options or looking to add a second or third travel card to your rotation. Plus, some of the welcome bonuses are upwards of six figures, sweetening the deal even more and setting you well on your way to free flights and hotel stays.

What should I consider before choosing a card?

If you want to find the absolute best travel credit card for you, you’ll need to take into account a number of factors—where you live, where you want to go, and your  spending habits  included. All of this means that a card that's great for you may not be such a hot pick for someone else.

Below, I’ll walk you through 10 of the best travel cards available right now. Looking specifically for the  best airline credit cards  or  hotel credit cards ? We've got you covered there, too.

  • Best for beginners: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
  • Best for building credit: Chase Freedom Unlimited®
  • Best for airfare and lounge access: The Platinum Card® from American Express
  • Best for groceries and dining: American Express® Gold Card
  • Best value: Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
  • Best for flexible rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
  • Best for varied bonus categories: Citi Premier Card
  • Best hotel card: Hilton Honors American Express Aspire
  • Best for cash back: Citi Double Cash Card
  • Best for rent: Bilt Mastercard
  • Best for retail: Chase Freedom Flex
  • Best business credit card: Chase Ink Business Preferred

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Best for beginners

Why we love it:  The Chase Sapphire Preferred has been a popular card for years, and with good reason. For a modest annual fee, it boasts a sizable welcome bonus, strong earning rates in popular spending categories, and the option to redeem points through the Chase portal at a rate of 1.25 cents per point or transfer them to airline and hotel partners. It’s widely considered a top pick for those who are  venturing into the world  of points and miles for the first time. The Chase Sapphire Reserve , the preferred’s pricier, $550-a-year sibling, is not on this list, as many find its extra benefits don’t justify the added cost. But it is an option for those looking for a product that comes with lounge access.

How it earns points:  The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns two points per dollar on all travel purchases, as well as five points per dollar on travel purchased through Chase, three points per dollar on all dining and online grocery purchases, and three points per dollar on select streaming services. It earns one point per dollar on everything else.

Additional perks:  In the event of a  travel delay , the Preferred offers up to $500 per ticket in reimbursement for hotels, meals, and incidentals (this means if you booked flights for you and your partner on the same card, you’d each qualify for the stipend). It also offers a 10 percent anniversary points bonus and a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards hotel credit.

Annual fee:  $95

Foreign transaction fees:  None

Current welcome bonus : Earn 60,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer the points to World of Hyatt to book two nights at at a Category 7 property at standard rates, such as the Park Hyatt Tokyo or the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa .

Read a   full review   of this card.

Learn more about applying for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® card.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Best for building credit

Why we love it:  Travel cards often require strong credit scores, so the Freedom Unlimited is a great way to build your credit with a free, easier-to-open card while earning rewards that can convert to travel rewards in the long term. While the Chase Freedom Unlimited is technically a cash-back card, if you pair it with a card that earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points—such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred—you’ll be able to instantly convert your rewards into valuable travel points by moving them between accounts.

How it earns points:   You’ll earn five points per dollar on  travel booked  through Chase Ultimate Rewards, three points per dollar on drugstore purchases and dining, and 1.5 points per dollar on everything else.

Additional perks:  This fee-free card is understandably light on perks, but it does come with some shopping and auto insurance protections.

Annual fee:  None

Foreign transaction fees:  3 percent

Current welcome bonus:   Earn $200 in cash back (20,000 points) after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. Plus, five percent cash back on gas station and grocery store purchases on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

How to spend it:  Transfer to British Airways to book a short-haul economy flight on Alaska Airlines, such as Seattle to Los Angeles.

Learn more about applying for the Chase Freedom Unlimited® card.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Best for airfare and lounge access

Why we love it:  The Platinum Card from American Express is a heavy hitter. With its strong points-earning potential and perks, it takes the headaches out of traveling. This American Express card has access to not one, but two networks of domestic and international  airport lounges ; elite status with two top hotel chains; and so many credits, it’s hard to keep track—especially with a list that keeps on growing. And when it’s time to cash in points, cardholders have the option to transfer to numerous airline and hotel partners, including some of the  world’s top carriers .

How it earns points:  The Platinum earns five Membership Rewards points per dollar on flights booked directly with an airline or via Amex Travel on up to $500,000 in purchases per calendar year, as well as five points per dollar on prepaid hotels booked through Amex Travel. It earns one point per dollar on other eligible purchases.

Additional perks:  Amex is all about offsetting this card’s high annual fee with a slate of compelling benefits and statement credits galore. It comes with an annual $200 credit to the airline of your choice to cover incidentals; $200 per year in Uber credits; a $200 hotel credit on qualifying prepaid bookings of at least two nights through Amex Fine Hotels + Resorts; a $300 Equinox credit to put toward gym membership; a $240 entertainment credit for eligible digital subscriptions; an $189 CLEAR Plus credit; a  Global Entry  or TSA PreCheck credit worth up to $100; up to $100 in annual Saks Fifth Avenue credits; cell phone protection; airport lounge access to both Amex’s own network of  Centurion Lounges  and Priority Pass; Gold Elite status with both Hilton and Marriott; and more. (Enrollment is required and terms apply to all of the aforementioned perks and statement credits.) The card comes with shopping, baggage, and rental car insurance, as well as access to sought-after restaurant reservations through a partnership with Resy.

Annual fee:  $695 ( see rates and fees )

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 80,000 points after you spend $8,000 on purchases within six months of account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer the points to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club to book round-trip business class tickets to Japan on Virgin's partner ANA. You can fly from the West Coast to  Tokyo  or  Kyoto  for 90,000 miles or the Midwest or East Coast to the island country's major cities for 95,000 miles.

Read a  full review  of this card.

Learn more about applying for The Platinum Card® from American Express.

American Express® Gold Card

Best for groceries and dining

Why we love it:  We all need to eat, and no matter how you do it,  you’ll be rewarded  if you hold the American Express Gold Card, which offers bonus points on both  restaurant  and supermarket spending. The card also comes with credits you can put toward takeout and delivery, as well as Uber. Gold Card users will also have access to Amex’s extensive transfer partner list when it comes time to put their hard-earned points to good use.

How it earns points:  The Gold Card earns four Membership Rewards points per dollar spent at restaurants worldwide and US supermarkets (on up to $25,000 each year, then one point per dollar). It also earns three points per dollar on flights booked directly with an airline or with AmEx Travel, as well as one point per dollar on all other eligible purchases.

Additional perks:  The Gold Card comes with a dining credit of up to $120 that can be used on dining through GrubHub, Goldbelly, and more (enrollment required, terms apply), as well as a $120 Uber credit and a $100 The Hotel Collection credit when you stay two nights or more (enrollment required, terms apply). It also provides shopping, baggage, and rental car protections.

Annual fee:  $250 ( see rates and fees )

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 60,000 points after you spend $6,000 on purchases within six months of account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer 63,000 points to Cathay Pacific to book a one-way business class ticket between the US and Helsinki on Finnair.

Learn more about applying for the American Express® Gold Card here.

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Why we love it:  Capital One’s first foray into the premium credit card space is a good one. On top of solid earning potential, the  Venture X  offers an array of easy-to-use perks that make it a solid competitor against top offerings from Chase and Amex—with a much lower annual fee. Points earned with the card can be transferred to Capital One’s solid list of transfer partners, including Air Canada Aeroplan and Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles.

How it earns points:  The Venture X nets two miles per dollar on every purchase, with bonuses on travel. The card gets 10 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked via the Capital One Travel portal, along with five miles per dollar on flights booked through the portal.

Additional perks:  The card comes with $300 annual credit good for bookings made through the Capital One Travel portal, a 10,000-mile bonus on every account anniversary, unlimited access for you and two guests to  Capital One Lounges and Priority Pass lounges  worldwide, and a $100 statement credit for TSA PreCheck or  Global Entry .

Annual fee:  $395

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer to Air Canada's Aeroplan to book Lufthansa first class on a one-way flight to Europe of up to 6,000 miles long, such as Chicago to Frankfurt.

Learn more about applying for the Capital One Venture X here.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Best for flexible rewards

Why we love it:  Simplicity is the name of the game with the Capital One Venture Rewards card, the Venture X's predecessor. It’s a straightforward card for those who don’t spend a ton of money in any one category and who want to avoid a hefty  annual fee . Use your miles to wipe travel purchases off your statement or transfer them to one of 17 loyalty partners, including AirFrance-KLM and Turkish Airlines.

How it earns points:  The Venture card earns two miles per dollar on all purchases, plus five miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.

Additional perks:  The Venture card doesn’t have the perks of a more expensive premium card, but cardholders do get a $100  TSA PreCheck or Global Entry  credit every four years.

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 75,000 bonus miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer the miles to Turkish Airlines' Miles&Smiles program to nab four round-trip business economy class tickets between anywhere on the US mainland and Hawaii on Turkish Airlines' partner United.

Learn more about applying for the Capital One Venture Rewards card here.

Citi Premier Card

Best for varied bonus categories

Why we love it:  The Citi Premier often flies under the radar—but it shouldn’t. The card boasts a slew of easy-to-maximize bonus categories, earning customers extra points on dining, groceries, gas, air travel, and hotels. And while Citi’s lineup of transfer partners doesn’t get as much attention as Chase or Amex, it still features top-notch choices for booking flights, both  domestic  and international (JetBlue TrueBlue and Qatar Airways Privilege Club are among Citi’s list of partners).

How it earns points:  The Premier earns three Citi ThankYou points per dollar spent at restaurants, supermarkets, and gas stations, as well as three points per dollar spent on airfare and hotels. It earns one point per dollar on everything else.

Additional perks:  The card offers a once-a-year credit of $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more when booking through the Citi ThankYou portal, as well as access to ticket pre-sales and cardmember-only events.

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 60,000 points once you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer the points to Etihad Guest to book round-trip business class tickets between New York and  Casablanca  on Royal Air Maroc. You’ll be well on your way to the 88,000 requisite points after you spend the money required to trigger the welcome bonus.

Learn more about applying for the Citi Premier Card.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire

Best hotel card

Why we love it:  You won’t find a more lucrative hotel card than the Hilton Honor American Express Aspire, which gives cardholders its top-tier Diamond status, an uncapped free night reward, resort credits, and sky-high earning rates. But the best part is, it’s more than just a hotel card. It also offers airfare credits and bonus points at US restaurants, providing a more well-rounded travel experience.

How it earns points:  The Aspire earns 14 Hilton Honors points per dollar spent with Hilton hotels and resorts, as well as seven points per dollar spent on flights booked directly with airlines or via Amex Travel, on car rentals booked directly with select car rental companies, and at US restaurants. It earns three points per dollar on everything else.

Additional perks:  Cardholders automatically receive Hilton’s highest elite status, Diamond, as well as one free night every year after renewal that can be redeemed at most Hilton properties. Each account year, cardholders are also eligible for up to $400 in statement credits toward purchases at Hilton Resorts, as well as $200 worth of statement credits for airfare purchases.

Annual fee:  $550

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 180,000 bonus points once you spend $6,000 on purchases within the first six months from account opening.

How to spend it:  Combine 120,000 points with the card’s free night certificate for a weekend at the  Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal .

Learn more about applying for the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire here.

Citi Double Cash Card

Best for cash back

Why we love it:  Like the Chase Freedom Unlimited, the Citi Double Cash Card is actually a cash-back card, but if you have a second card—like the Citi Premier—that earns ThankYou points, you’ll be able to convert your  cash back  into travel rewards. It’s also easy to use, earning a flat two points per dollar on every dollar spent, no matter what the category.

How it earns points:  The Citi Double Cash card earns two points per dollar on all purchases—one point when you buy, and one point when you pay your bill.

Additional perks:  The card comes access to ticket pre-sales and cardmember-only events.

Current welcome bonus:  Earn $200 cash back once you spend $1,500 on purchases within the first six months from account opening.

Learn more about applying for the Citi Double Cash Card.

Bilt Mastercard

Best for rent

Why we love it:  Bilt is a relative newcomer to the scene, and it’s shaking things up in the best way. It allows renters to earn points on their rent without paying credit card processing fees—and not just any points. Bilt’s points are transferable, and its list of transfer partners, including American Airlines AAdvantage, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, and World of Hyatt, is unmatched in the industry. The card also earns on travel and dining, and while it doesn’t have a sign-up bonus, it does unveil fun new bonuses each month for Rent Day, or the first of the month, in addition to the ability to double your points earned on that day. And all of these benefits come without an annual fee.

How it earns points:  The Bilt Mastercard earns three points per dollar on dining, two points per dollar on dining, and one point per dollar on everything else, including rent. Those bonuses double for purchases aside from rent made on the first day of each month.

Additional perks:  The card comes with trip delay and interruption protection of up to $5,000, trip delay reimbursement, an auto rental collision damage waiver, and a $5 Lyft credit when you take three rides in a calendar month.

Current welcome bonus:  None

Learn more about applying for the Bilt Mastercard.

Chase Freedom Flex

Best retail card

Why we love it:  Like the Chase Freedom Unlimited, the Chase Freedom Flex Card is actually a cash back card whose points can convert to Ultimate Rewards if you have another card that earns them. Its unique earning structure allows you to earn a bonus in a rotating category each quarter, many of which are categories not often covered by other cards—such as Amazon purchases, department stores, or PayPal purchases.

How it earns points:  You’ll earn five points per dollar on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in rotating bonus categories each quarter. You’ll also earn five points per dollar on  travel booked  through Chase Ultimate Rewards, three points per dollar on drugstore purchases and dining, and one point per dollar on everything else.

Additional perks:  Like its sister card, the Freedom Flex comes with some shopping and auto insurance protections, as well as cell phone protection.

Current welcome bonus:  Earn $200 in cash back (20,000 points) after you spend $500 on purchases in the first three months from account opening. Plus, five percent cash back on gas station and grocery store purchases on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.

How to spend it:  Transfer the points to Southwest Rapid Rewards for a domestic winter getaway to a Sun Belt state.

Learn more about applying for the Chase Freedom Flex card.

Chase Ink Business Preferred

Best business credit card

Why we love it:  For small business owners, the Chase Ink Business Preferred is a great card to have in the rotation. For a modest $95 annual fee, it earns three points per dollar on travel, as well as on a host of useful business categories ranging from shipping to advertising and beyond. It also comes with a sky-high welcome bonus right now, making it a great opportunity to jump-start or boost your balance of Chase Ultimate Rewards points.

How it earns points:  The Chase Ink Business Preferred earns three points per dollar on the first $150,000 spent each account anniversary year combined on shipping purchases; internet, cable, and phone services; advertising purchase with social media sites and search engines; and travel. It earns an uncapped one point per dollar on all other purchases.

Additional perks:  The card comes with an auto rental collision damage waiver, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, purchase protection, cell phone protection, and extended warranty protection.

Current welcome bonus:  Earn 100,000 points once you spend $8,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.

How to spend it:  Transfer the points to Iberia to fly round trip in business class to Madrid from Boston, Chicago, or New York on off-peak dates for just 68,000 miles or from West Coast hubs for 95,000 miles.

Learn more about applying for the Chase Ink Business Preferred card.

See rates and fees for American Express cards listed: The Platinum Card ; The Gold Card , Aspire . All information about the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card has been collected independently by Condé Nast Traveler; this card is no longer available through Condé Nast Traveler.

Condé Nast Traveler has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Condé Nast Traveler and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.

The Best Travel Credit Cards, For Beginners, Pros, and Everyone in Between

  • Best Credit Cards
  • Balance Transfer
  • No Annual Fee

On this page

  • Our top picks
  • Travel credit card details
  • How travel cards work

Types of travel cards

  • Pros and cons
  • How to make the most of a travel card
  • Alternatives to travel cards
  • Our methodology
  • Frequently asked questions

The Best Travel Credit Cards of January 2024

January 11, 2024

Why trust us?

Whether you’re an occasional traveler looking to save on your next vacation or a frequent traveler looking for premium travel perks, there’s a travel rewards card for you. We’ll break down our top picks for the best travel rewards credit cards.

Best travel credit cards of January 2024

  • Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card : Best for flat-rate rewards
  • The Platinum Card® from American Express : Best for luxury travel
  • Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card : Best for occasional travelers
  • American Express® Gold Card : Best for foodies
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card : Best welcome bonus
  • Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card : Best for annual credits
  • Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card : Best first travel card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card : Best for budget flyers
  • Discover it® Miles : Best for no annual fee
  • Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card : Best for gas and transit
  • Citi Premier® Card : Best for everyday spending
  • Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card : Best for travel credits
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve® : Best for point value
  • Credit One Bank Wander® Card : Best for fair credit
  • United Quest℠ Card : Best for United MileagePlus members

Additional Options:

  • Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card: Best hotel credit card
  • American Airlines AAdvantage® MileUp®: Best no-annual-fee airline card

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Rewards rate

At a glance, overall rating, why we like this card.

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers a great flat rate of 2X miles for all purchases and gives you ultimate flexibility for redemption, including for travel purchases booked outside of the Capital One portal non-travel rewards, such as gift cards (though you may get a lower value). You can also enjoy additional benefits, like an up to $100 credit toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®, that can help offset the $95 annual fee.

  • Simple earning structure and flexible redemption options
  • Generous sign-up bonus
  • Lack of large domestic travel transfer partners
  • Low redemption value unless using select airlines

Bottom Line

The Capital One Venture Card is a top-notch travel card that offers simplicity and valuable perks without the pricey annual fees associated with many premium cards in this category or skimping on rewards.

  • Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Earn 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your miles to get reimbursed for any travel purchase—or redeem by booking a trip through Capital One Travel
  • Enrich every hotel stay from the Lifestyle Collection with a suite of cardholder benefits, like a $50 experience credit, room upgrades, and more
  • Transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs

Rates & Fees

The platinum card® from american express.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

See if you’re pre-approved for this card using our CardMatch tool .

This popular premium card from American Express comes fully-loaded with travel benefits, including luxury lounge access, Hilton Honors gold status (enrollment required), no foreign transaction fees and an impressive list of travel benefits that will help offset the $695 annual fee.

This card currently touts a generous welcome offer: You can earn 80,000 points if you spend $8,000 in your first six months of card membership, which we estimate to be worth around $800 when you book through AmexTravel (where points are worth around 1 cent each).

  • Extensive list of travel credits and premium perks
  • Ability to transfer points to a host of airline partners, including Delta Airlines
  • Limited amount of bonus categories
  • Expensive annual fee

For frequent travelers or those looking to make their dream vacation a reality, the Amex Platinum checks every box and provides generous travel credits to offset its high annual fee.

  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Hotel Credit: Get up to $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two-night stay.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back in statement credits each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Disney+, a Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The Wall Street Journal. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership (subject to auto-renewal) with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card®. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Up Benefits are excluded.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Platinum Card®.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • $300 Equinox Credit: Get up to $300 back in statement credits per calendar year on an Equinox membership, or an Equinox club membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you pay with your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required. Visit https://platinum.equinox.com/ to enroll.
  • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: Breeze through security with CLEAR Plus at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues nationwide and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your Membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Platinum Card®. Learn more.
  • $100 Global Entry Credit: Receive either a $100 statement credit every 4 years for a Global Entry application fee or a statement credit up to $85 every 4.5 years for a TSA PreCheck® (through a TSA official enrollment provider) application fee, when charged to your Platinum Card®. Card Members approved for Global Entry will also receive access to TSA PreCheck at no additional cost.
  • Shop Saks with Platinum: Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases in Saks Fifth Avenue stores or at saks.com on your Platinum Card®. That's up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
  • $300 SoulCycle At-Home Bike Credit: Get a $300 statement credit for the purchase of a SoulCycle at-home bike with your Platinum Card®. An Equinox+ subscription is required to purchase a SoulCycle at-home bike and access SoulCycle content. Must charge full price of bike in one transaction. Shipping available in the contiguous U.S. only. Enrollment Required.
  • Unlock access to exclusive reservations and special dining experiences with Global Dining Access by Resy when you add your Platinum Card® to your Resy profile.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

The Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card is a great choice for infrequent travelers who want ultimate flexibility when it comes to earning and redeeming rewards. Cardholders can redeem points for statement credit to pay toward travel expenses, like flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars or baggage fees. Additionally, you can redeem for dining purchases.

You can also take advantage of its sign-up bonus — 25,000 online bonus points if you spend $1,000 in your first 90 days, redeemable for a $250 statement toward travel and dining made on your credit card within the last 12 months, including on third-party sites like Expedia or Travelocity.

  • Ultraflexible redemption policy that can cover some purchases outside travel
  • Can redeem rewards as a statement credit months after the initial travel or dining purchase
  • Rewards rate for travel purchases not as lucrative as others in this category
  • Not the most valuable sign-up offer

Despite the fact that cardholders won’t be able to weigh spending toward a particular category to maximize their points, this card is a great fit for occasional travelers who still want to earn rewards but without having to pay an annual fee.

  • Earn unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don't expire as long as your account remains open.
  • 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.
  • Use your card to book your trip how and where you want - you're not limited to specific websites with blackout dates or restrictions.
  • Redeem points for a statement credit to pay for travel or dining purchases, such as flights, hotel stays, car and vacation rentals, baggage fees, and also at restaurants including takeout.
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the intro APR offer ends, 18.24% - 28.24% Variable APR will apply. A 3% fee applies to all balance transfers.
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase. That means instead of earning an unlimited 1.5 points for every $1, you could earn 1.87-2.62 points for every $1 you spend on purchases.
  • Contactless Cards - The security of a chip card, with the convenience of a tap.
  • This online only offer may not be available if you leave this page or if you visit a Bank of America financial center. You can take advantage of this offer when you apply now.

American Express® Gold Card

American Express® Gold Card

The Amex Gold card offers an industry-leading 4X points at restaurants (including U.S. takeout and delivery) and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 in purchases per calendar year, then 1 point per dollar) as well as 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com.

It also features dining benefits, such as an up to $120 in yearly statement credits on select restaurants, including Grubhub and The Cheesecake Factory, and up to $120 in Uber cash annually. In addition to the foodie-friendly rewards rate, this card offers a valuable introductory offer and travel perks like baggage and car rental insurance when you book with your Gold card.

  • If you spend a lot on food and dining, its industry-leading rewards rate on restaurant and U.S. supermarket purchases is hard to beat.
  • Like the Amex Green card, you can transfer points to multiple air travel partners, including Delta Airlines, and hotel partners, like Hilton Honors.
  • Its annual fee is pricier than what’s on some travel credit cards.
  • You must redeem travel rewards through amextravel.com.

The Amex Gold is one of the best cards on the market with its generous rewards rate and lucrative introductory offer. If food and travel account for a large portion of your spending, this card’s value more than covers the $250 annual fee.

  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Get a $100 experience credit with a minimum two-night stay when you book The Hotel Collection through American Express Travel. Experience credit varies by property.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

This card has one of the highest sign-up bonuses you’ll find with a mid-level travel card. Plus, it offers generous rewards for your travel and dining purchases and additional benefits like a 25% boost in points value when you redeem your rewards through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

  • You'll find more benefits with this card than with other mid-level travel cards, including an anniversary boost and a hotel credit.
  • Instead of the typical 1-cent–per-point value you might find on rival travel cards, you can enjoy 25% more value when you book travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Bonus categories are limited to travel and dining, so you have little flexibility in how you earn rewards.
  • The card lacks attractive travel perks like airport lounge access or security precheck credits.

If you are hoping to fast-track your way to your next trip, the Chase Sapphire Preferred offers ample opportunities to earn rewards, along with a generous sign-up bonus.

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining, and 2x on all other travel purchases, and $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.
  • Member FDIC

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

The Venture X is an instant top contender in the premium card market with its fully-loaded annual benefits that can be worth over $400. Yearly perks like bonus miles on your account anniversary (equal to $100 in travel) and a $300 travel credit when you book travel through Capital One Travel, can help cover the annual fee. Compared with other high-end travel rewards credit cards, the $395 annual fee is modest, and many travelers will come out well ahead.

  • You can enjoy a fairly simple rewards structure with unlimited 2X miles in all purchase categories, in addition to bonus rewards in Capital One travel categories.
  • The card offers statement credit for Global Entry and TSA Precheck, which adds to your overall savings.
  • The sign-up bonus is generous, but it requires a high spend.
  • While not unusual, you'll need excellent credit to be eligible for this premium card.

Travel rewards cards packed with this many features typically come with sky-high annual fees, but the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card delivers with luxury benefits and a more down-to-earth annual fee.

  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive a $300 annual credit for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of trip options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Elevate every hotel stay from the Premier or Lifestyle Collections with a suite of cardholder benefits, like an experience credit, room upgrades, and more

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

This card is ideal as a first travel card because you don’t have to strategize to offset an annual fee every year, but can still enjoy terrific travel benefits. You can redeem for various travel purchases like hotels, rental cars and flights either through Capital One’s travel portal or other travel websites. Plus, you can transfer your rewards to partner loyalty programs — adding more flexibility in your travel.

  • No need to offset the cost of an annual fee
  • Low minimum spend for sign-up bonus
  • Lower rewards rate and less perks than cards with an annual fee
  • Reduced value of your miles when you use the rewards for non-travel redemption options, such as statement credits or gift cards

This card offers a straightforward earning structure and an attainable sign-up bonus, allowing cardholders to rack up miles while not worrying about an annual fee.

  • $0 annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
  • Earn a bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $200 in travel
  • Earn unlimited 1.25X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Enjoy 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months; 19.99% - 29.99% variable APR after that; balance transfer fee applies

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus credit card is ideally suited for entry-level travelers. Even if you only fly occasionally with Southwest airlines, you can easily boost rewards and receive a generous welcome offer. The perks for this card rival those found in higher-tier cards, such as getting the first two checked bags for free and two EarlyBird Check-In® each year.

  • Can almost cover the annual fee with 3,000-point anniversary bonus
  • Valuable perks on a domestic airline with a reputation for being customer-friendly
  • Does not include certain perks often found with travel cards, such as priority boarding or a fast track to elite status
  • Lacks airline partners and international travel options

For those already integrated into the Southwest ecosystem, this card offers generous bonus opportunities and access to unique, customer-friendly perks for a reasonable annual fee.

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • 3,000 anniversary points each year.
  • Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases.
  • Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services; select streaming.
  • 2 EarlyBird Check-In® each year.
  • Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Discover it® Miles

Discover it® Miles

For a no-annual-fee card, Discover offers simplicity. You’ll be able to earn unlimited miles and have flexible redemption options like statement credits towards travel purchases or as cash deposits into your bank account. Plus, cardholders have a unique opportunity at the end of their first year when Discover will match every mile you earn.

  • Appealing welcome offer that can essentially double all the miles earned at the end of the first year
  • Competitive redemption value for cash back at 1 cent per mile
  • Rewards earning potential takes a significant hit after your first year
  • Can’t transfer miles to airline frequent-flyer programs

The Discover it® Miles card offers an impressive list of high-end travel perks and a generous first-year welcome offer for travel credit card newbies, but earning benefits drop off substantially after the first 12 months.

  • Unlimited Bonus: Unlimited Mile-for-Mile match for all new cardmembers - only from Discover. Discover gives you an unlimited match of all the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. There’s no signing up, no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a Miles-for-Miles match.
  • Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase
  • No annual fee
  • Turn Miles into cash. Or redeem as a statement credit for your travel purchases like airfare, hotels, rideshares, gas stations, restaurants and more.
  • 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases. Then 17.24% - 28.24% Standard Variable Purchase APR will apply.
  • Discover could help you reduce exposure of your personal information online by helping you remove it from select people-search sites that could sell your data. It’s free, activate with the mobile app.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
  • Freeze your account in seconds with an on/off switch either on the mobile app or website to prevent new purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites. Activate for free.
  • Terms and conditions apply.

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

It offers one of the best rewards rates you can get on everyday travel – including airfare, hotels, gas stations and transit – without paying an annual fee. And since it also rewards dining (another key everyday spending category), it makes for a terrific standalone rewards card.

  • It has no annual fee and a high rewards rate for everyday spending categories.
  • It earns bonus rewards in common spending categories like gas stations and restaurants as well as in harder-to-find categories like phone plans, making it an especially versatile option.
  • Though the card earns bonus rewards in a great mix of everyday categories, it offers a lackluster rate on grocery purchases, which could limit its standalone value.
  • Unlike some competing no-annual-fee travel cards, the Autograph doesn’t let you transfer points to airline or hotel loyalty programs, limiting the potential value of your rewards.

This card could be a great fit for occasional travelers who want to earn rewards on everyday spending and have the flexibility to redeem for cash back.

  • Select "Apply Now" to take advantage of this specific offer and learn more about product features, terms and conditions.
  • Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $200 cash redemption value.
  • Earn unlimited 3X points on the things that really add up - like restaurants, travel, gas stations, transit, popular streaming services, and phone plans. Plus, earn 1X points on other purchases.
  • $0 annual fee.
  • 0% intro APR for 12 months from account opening on purchases. 20.24%, 25.24%, or 29.99% variable APR thereafter.
  • Up to $600 of cell phone protection against damage or theft. Subject to a $25 deductible.
  • Redeem your rewards points for travel, gift cards, or statement credits. Or shop at millions of online stores and redeem your rewards when you check out with PayPal.
  • Find tickets to top sports and entertainment events, book travel, make dinner reservations and more with your complimentary 24/7 Visa Signature® Concierge.

Citi Premier® Card

Citi Premier® Card

If you can’t decide between a travel or general rewards credit card, the Citi Premier offers the best of both worlds with a rewards rate of 3X points for every $1 spent on air travel, hotels, restaurants, gas stations and supermarkets, as well as one point per dollar spent on all other purchases. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10X points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel portal through June 30, 2024.

The Citi Premier card is currently offering a valuable sign-up bonus of 60,000 points for spending $4,000 in the first three months in addition to its flexible redemption options and exclusive side benefits.

  • Annual hotel credit when booked through thankyou.com or 1-800-THANKYOU
  • Earn bonus rewards for select travel and everyday purchases
  • Domestic airline transfer partner limited to JetBlue
  • No travel insurance, which is typical for travel cards in this tier

The Citi Premier card is a smart choice for frequent travelers who want to use a single rewards card for the bulk of their everyday spending and offers premium perks for a reasonable annual fee.

  • Earn 60,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals, and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel℠ portal through June 30, 2024.
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Other Hotels
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 60,000 ThankYou® Points are redeemable for $600 in gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

This card from Bank of America offers great value for a $95 annual fee card, especially if you already bank with them. If you are a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you’ll be rewarded with an additional 25 percent to 75 percent redemption bonus on all your earnings.

In addition, this card offers some of the strongest travel insurance benefits you can get, up to a $100 annual statement credit that you can use for airline incidental expenses, an application fee credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, and a points program that rewards spending in a variety of categories.

  • The $100 annual statement credit you can use towards airline expenses and the application fee credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry more than offset the $95 annual fee.
  • Preferred Rewards members receive some of the highest rewards rates among any travel or cash back credit cards.
  • If you’re not a Preferred Rewards member, the benefits of the card are not as robust compared to other cards with similar annual fees.
  • The $100 airline incidental credit only covers qualifying incidentals and not actual flight costs.

The Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card combines the benefits of a cash back card and premium travel card and is an especially good value for those with existing Bank of America accounts.

  • Receive 60,000 online bonus points - a $600 value - after you make at least $4,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.
  • Earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases. No limit to the points you can earn and your points don't expire as long as your account remains open.
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase. That means you could earn 2.5-3.5 points on travel and dining purchases and 1.87-2.62 points on all other purchases, for every $1 you spend.
  • Redeem for cash back as a statement credit, deposit into eligible Bank of America® accounts, credit to eligible Merrill® accounts, or gift cards or purchases at the Bank of America Travel Center.
  • Get up to $100 in Airline Incidental Statement Credits annually and TSA PreCheck®/Global Entry Statement Credits of up to $100, every four years.
  • Travel Insurance protections to assist with trip delays, cancellations and interruptions, baggage delays and lost luggage.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Low $95 annual fee.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

For those looking for a premium credit card with generous travel perks and a top-tier sign-up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Reserve is considered to be one of the best options on the market. And with no blackout dates, expiration dates for points or point limits, the card offers major redemption flexibility.

The sign-up bonus is worth a whopping $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first three months, so you are getting more than a cent per mile value. With the $300 annual credit for travel purchases, generous earning structure and impressive list of additional perks, seasoned travelers have plenty of opportunity to offset the steep $550 annual fee.

  • Wealth of travel perks and rewards categories
  • Increase your point value by 50% by redeeming them for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Required spend of $300 on travel annually before travel category rewards rates apply
  • Lower rewards value for merchandise

While the price of admission for Chase’s premium travel card is steep, the bonuses and wealth of luxury travel perks will be worth it in the long run for experienced travelers.

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more

Credit One Bank Wander® Card

Credit One Bank Wander® Card

This is one of the only travel cards accessible to people with fair credit. It also offers a high rewards rate on a great mix of travel spending, including gas, airfare, hotels, resorts and bookings made through travel agencies. This will be especially appealing if you prefer booking directly with airlines and hotels to maximize loyalty rewards and elite status.

  • People with fair-to-excellent credit can earn high rewards on eligible travel and everyday purchases like dining and gas.
  • Frequent travelers can earn generous rewards even while working toward elite status with airline and hotel loyalty programs.
  • It offers fewer perks compared to other mid-level travel cards with a similar annual fee and high variable APR.
  • Points aren’t transferable and remain fixed at a value of 1 cent each when redeemed for cash back, which could prove limiting for frequent travelers who know how to maximize points for greater value.

This could be a top pick for travelers who struggle to qualify for cards with more travel perks and transfer partners.

  • Earn 10,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on eligible purchases in the first 90 days from your account opening and redeem for a $100 statement credit, gift cards, or travel.
  • Earn 10x points on eligible hotels and car rentals booked through the Credit One Bank travel site
  • Earn 5x points on eligible travel, dining, and gas
  • Earn 1x points on all other purchases
  • Redeem your reward points for statement credits, gift cards, merchandise, flights, hotels, and more
  • With $0 Fraud Liability, you won’t be responsible for unauthorized charges
  • Free Online Credit Score and Credit Report summary, terms apply
  • If you are a Covered Borrower under the Military Lending Act, you may get a different offer
  • See Rates & Fees

United Quest℠ Card

United Quest℠ Card

If you like to regularly travel on United Airlines (or their partner airlines) then this card is worth a look. Not only do you earn enhanced bonus miles for United purchases, other travel and select everyday purchases, you also get an impressive amount of airline-specific perks. This includes anniversary credits and free first and second checked bags for you and one companion.

  • Impressive sign-up bonus and anniversary credits
  • Easy to earn miles with popular bonus categories like dining and select streaming purchases
  • High annual fee for infrequent United flyers
  • No airport lounge access

The United Quest Card is a terrific option for semi-frequent United travelers, but cardholders should plan to redeem United miles at least twice a year to take full advantage and offset the annual fee.

  • Earn 70,000 bonus miles and 500 PQP after qualifying purchases
  • Earn 3 miles per $1 spent on United® purchases
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on all other travel, dining and select streaming services
  • Earn 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Free first and second checked bags - a savings of up to $320 per roundtrip (terms apply) - and priority boarding
  • Up to a $125 United® purchase credit and up to 10,000 miles in award flight credits each year – terms apply
  • Earn up to 6,000 Premier qualifying points (500 PQP for every $12K you spend on purchases)

The information about the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card, the American Airlines AAdvantage® MileUp® Card and the American Express® Green Card has been collected independently by CreditCards.com and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by Amex Assurance Company.

For Capital One products listed on this page, some of the above benefits are provided by Visa® or Mastercard® and may vary by product. See the respective Guide to Benefits for details, as terms and exclusions apply.

Comparing the best travel credit cards of 2024

Editor’s picks: best travel credit card details, best for flat-rate rewards: capital one venture rewards credit card.

  • Best features : For a reasonable annual fee, this popular Capital One credit card offers standout rewards with an easy rewards structure and versatile redemption options. You can transfer miles to over 15 loyalty programs or redeem for statement credit toward travel.
  • Biggest drawbacks : Capital One doesn’t have many domestic travel transfer partners. This can make it harder to maximize the value of your miles when booking domestic flights.
  • Alternatives : If you’re looking to earn at a flat-rate but aren’t too pleased with the Venture card’s $95 annual fee ( See Rates and Fees ), the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card is a suitable alternative. Although cardholders only earn 1.25X miles on all purchases, the card still comes with a sign-up bonus of 20,000 miles for spending $500 in the first three months. This is a smaller bonus and a lower rewards rate than the Venture card, but it’ll also be easier to obtain, making this an ideal option for modest spenders.
  • Bottom line : This card is a great option if you’re looking for an easy way to earn high travel rewards on all purchases. But if you’re after top-drawer travel perks, you may want to look elsewhere.

Read our Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for luxury travel: The Platinum Card® from American Express

  • Best features : This premium card comes fully-loaded. You can enjoy luxury lounge access, elite status with Hilton Honors and Marriott Bonvoy hotels (upon enrollment) and even travel consultants to help plan your trip. A laundry list of travel credits can also help offset the card’s annual fee.
  • Biggest drawbacks : The card only earns bonus rewards on flights and prepaid hotels. You might earn more with cards that offer bonus points or miles on both travel and everyday essentials. Plus, some of the credits – like the card’s luxury fitness credit or Walmart+ credit – don’t have broad appeal, making it harder to offset the high $695 annual fee.
  • Alternatives : Unlike the Platinum card, the American Express® Gold Card lets you earn high bonus rewards for purchases made in categories beyond travel, including restaurant and U.S. supermarket purchases. It also comes with a lot of the same benefits as the Platinum card, such as car rental insurance, purchase protection and Hotel Collection benefits, all for a much smaller $250 annual fee.
  • Bottom line : If you can take advantage of its many perks, this card should tick all the right boxes for big spenders and frequent travelers looking for luxury travel perks, particularly complimentary airport lounge access.

Read our American Express Platinum Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for occasional travelers: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

  • Best features : This card will appeal to infrequent travelers who don’t typically book through travel portals. Instead, you can redeem your points for any travel and dining purchases made on your credit card within the last 12 months. And if you’re a Preferred Rewards member, you can earn up to 25% to 75% more points on every purchase.
  • Biggest drawbacks : The best rewards are reserved for Bank of America customers with savings or investment accounts. If that’s not you, you can likely find another card that rewards your travel purchases at a higher rate.
  • Alternatives : The Capital One VentureOne also does not charge an annual fee or foreign transaction fee ( See Rates and Fees ), but even casual travelers can benefit from its valuable purchase and travel protections.
  • Bottom line : The Bank of America Travel Rewards card is a solid choice for occasional travelers focused on earning some rewards and avoiding an annual fee.

Related : Is the Bank of America Travel Rewards card worth it?

Read our Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for foodies: American Express® Gold Card

  • Best features : Traveling foodies, rejoice – this card offers an industry-leading 4X points at restaurants, including takeout and delivery in the U.S. You’ll also earn 4X points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year, then one point per dollar) and 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or AmexTravel.com. Trips with common carriers that are booked with your Gold card are covered for baggage insurance worth up to $1,250 for carry-on bags and $500 for checked bags.
  • Biggest drawbacks : The annual fee is $250, pricier than other travel rewards cards with mid-level travel perks. And unless food is a significant portion of your spending, the card’s rewards rate and food delivery credits may not be the best fit.
  • Alternatives : The Citi Premier® Card comes close to matching the Amex Gold with its rewards rates, but its annual fee is much lower (just $95).
  • Bottom line : If you’re a frequent traveler who makes dining out a staple of their vacations and staycations, you’ll get a lot of value with this card.

Read our American Express Gold Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best welcome bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Best features : This card packs in plenty of value that is rare for only $95 a year. It comes with a high sign-up bonus, generous rewards program and competitive redemption values.
  • Biggest drawbacks : You may need to look beyond the Chase Sapphire Preferred if you prefer luxury features like TSA PreCheck, priority boarding, travel credits and lounge access.
  • Alternatives: The Citi Premier® Card has a similar annual fee and a generous welcome offer too. Travelers who want to book travel outside of credit card portals and who spend a lot on gas and in-store grocery purchases may get better value out of the Premier card.
  • Bottom line : A modest annual fee, impressive sign-up bonus and ultra-flexible rewards redemption give this card great short- and long-term value for travelers who don’t need a ton of luxury perks.

Read our Chase Sapphire Preferred Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for annual credits: Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

  • Best features : Cardholders can take advantage of this card’s yearly credits to help offset its annual fee and enjoy additional perks like lounge access. And when you book through Capital One Travel, you’ll earn some of the highest rewards available for hotels, rental cars and flights.
  • Biggest drawbacks : You’ll have to book your travel through Capital One Travel instead of directly through an airline or hotel to get the best value out of this card.
  • Alternatives: The Platinum Card® from American Express is one of the best travel cards for lounge access and other luxury perks. Frequent travelers who can take advantage of all those perks can easily offset the card’s high annual fee.
  • Bottom line : The Venture X should appeal to both frequent travelers who want to earn more than just 1 mile per dollar on all non-travel purchases and luxury travelers who want to enjoy premium travel without paying the typical sky-high annual fees.

Read our Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best first travel card: Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

  • Best features : The VentureOne card is a basic travel card for beginners who want to earn flexible rewards but aren’t ready to commit to an annual fee ( See Rates and Fees ). VentureOne cardholders can earn bonus miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 1.25X miles on every other purchase. You can transfer these miles to numerous airline and hotel partners.
  • Biggest drawbacks : Other no-annual-fee travel cards offer better perks and higher rewards rates than the VentureOne’s 1.25X miles.
  • Alternatives : The Bilt Mastercard® is a unique no-annual-fee card that earns points on rent payments without the processing fees. But the card is also a great beginner travel card, offering bonus rewards on travel and dining (points are transferable too). Plus, if you wait until the first of the month, your patience will be rewarded with double points on all non-rent purchases for 24 hours (on up to 10,000 bonus points). That’s a whopping 6X points on dining, 4X points on travel and 2X points on all other non-rent purchases. You must use the card 5 times each statement period to earn points.
  • Bottom line : Budget-friendly travelers can get a decent amount of value out of this starter travel card, but if transferring rewards to travel partners isn’t a priority for you, a flat-rate cash back card may be more lucrative.

Read our Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for budget flyers: Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

  • Best features : This entry-level airline card has some of the same popular features as more expensive Southwest consumer travel cards, including a chance to earn the Southwest Companion Pass® – one of the most coveted perks in all of travel rewards. If you earn 135,000 points in a year, you can pick a companion to fly with you for free (except for taxes and fees) for up to two years on any Southwest flight that you purchase with cash or points.
  • Biggest drawbacks : Unlike some other airline cards, this no-frills card doesn’t earn bonus points in popular everyday categories like gas or grocery stores. Plus, the card’s anniversary bonus of 3,000 points is lower than the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card’s bonus.
  • Alternatives : The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card may be a better fit for budget travelers. It comes with a $0 intro annual fee (then $99 a year) and a chance to earn bonus miles faster thanks to practical bonus categories including restaurants and U.S. supermarkets. It also has a number of convenient features like priority boarding and a chance to earn a $100 Delta flight credit. Plus, Delta and its partner network are much more extensive than Southwest.
  • Bottom line : The Rapid Rewards Plus card is a decent choice for occasional Southwest flyers looking for a cheap rewards travel card. But if you fly Southwest frequently and want to double your anniversary points while avoiding foreign transaction fees, consider upgrading to the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card and its higher annual fee of $99.

Read our Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for no annual fee: Discover it® Miles

  • Best features : The Discover it® Miles offers simplicity and flexibility without the annual fee. All purchases earn a fairly average 1.5X miles. But Discover sweetens the deal by matching all the miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year. Instead of travel, you can also redeem rewards online with Amazon or when you pay with PayPal (though redemption value might be lower).
  • Alternatives : The Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card is another solid no-annual-fee travel card ( See Rates and Fees ). It not only offers a flat rate of 1.25X miles on every purchase, but also 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. That could make it easier for frequent travelers to earn rewards. It also has a number of travel and consumer protections that you won’t find with most entry-level travel cards, including the Discover it ® Miles.
  • Bottom line : This card skips the annual fee and the generous first-year welcome offer is ideal for budget-friendly travelers or someone looking for their first travel credit card.

Read our Discover it ® Miles review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for gas and transit: Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card

  • Best features: This card’s mix of bonus categories should be a terrific fit if you’re looking for a low-cost way to earn rewards on both everyday travel and big trips. You’ll earn rewards at a great rate on everything from gas and transit to airfare and hotels, without worrying about maximizing point values or offsetting an annual fee.
  • Biggest drawbacks: Its list of perks is just okay, even for a no-annual-fee travel card. You’ll miss out not only on benefits like expedited security screening and lounge access, but also the ability to transfer points to airline and hotel loyalty programs.
  • Alternatives: Though it may earn rewards at a lower rate, the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card could be a great alternative. Its streamlined, flat-rate rewards program is a great fit if you’re new to earning miles, and the card gives you the flexibility to transfer miles to Capital One airline and hotel partners, which could boost their redemption value.
  • Bottom line: The Autograph card is a great option if you want to earn rewards on everyday travel and need the flexibility to redeem for both travel and cash back.

Read our Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for everyday spending: Citi Premier® Card

  • Best features : For a modest annual fee, cardholders earn 3X points, not only on air travel, hotels and dining but also supermarket and gas station purchases, two of the most popular everyday spending categories. Plus, for a limited time, earn a total of 10X points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals and attractions (excluding air travel) booked on the Citi Travel portal through June 30, 2024. Its sign-up bonus is on par with competitor offers, and cardholders get an annual hotel credit, making it easier to offset the card’s annual fee.
  • Biggest drawbacks : If you want to transfer your points to get more value out of your rewards, JetBlue is the only domestic carrier on Citi’s list of airline partners, which can make it harder to book domestic travel.
  • Alternatives : The Chase Sapphire Preferred is similar but may be a more attractive option due to its travel protection coverage. Plus, Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program includes a robust list of airlines and hotel partners.
  • Bottom line : Someone looking to earn rewards on travel and everyday expenses will appreciate the versatility of the Citi Premier Card, not to mention its generous welcome bonus.

Read our Citi Premier Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for travel credits: Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card

  • Best features : Along with perks like an annual credit up to $100 for airline incidentals, which includes seat upgrades and airline lounge fees, this card offers a credit of up to $100 to cover the cost of a TSA Precheck or Global Entry application. That perk isn’t always included on travel cards at the $95-annual-fee level. You can also redeem for cash back as a deposit into Bank of America® checking or savings accounts or for gift cards and purchases at the Bank of America Travel Center.
  • Biggest drawbacks : Unlike many travel rewards cards with an annual fee, this card doesn’t let you transfer rewards to partner airline or hotel loyalty programs to squeeze more value out of your points. Plus, the card’s best rewards rates are reserved for people with large savings or investment accounts with Bank of America.
  • Alternatives: The Chase Sapphire Preferred card has greater flexibility for travelers who want to transfer their points to airline or hotel travel partners. It also comes with better redemption value if you book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and travel protections.
  • Bottom line : This card could be a good fit for heavy packers who can take advantage of the airline incidental fee credits or people who already have a Bank of America account. Those who are loyal to one airline or don’t bank with Bank of America may not find much value in this card.

Read our Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for point value: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • Best features : This top-of-the-line card comes with a wealth of travel perks, including a sign-up bonus worth $900 when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards (60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first three months). In addition to the $300 travel credit, you can try out services like Instacart+ and DashPass for free for one year.
  • Biggest drawbacks : Despite the annual credit and elevated bonus categories, the card’s $550 annual fee might be challenging to offset every year.
  • Alternatives : If you’re looking for a card with annual credits and luxury lounge access, The Platinum Card® from American Express offers a wider network but carries a slightly higher annual fee of $695.
  • Bottom line : Frequent travelers who can take full advantage of the Sapphire Reserve card’s perks and bonus categories can also enjoy the card’s boosted value on travel redemptions.

Related : Chase Sapphire Preferred vs. Ch ase Sapphire Reserve

Read our Chase Sapphire Reserve review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for fair credit: Credit One Bank Wander® Card

  • Best features : Even people with fair credit can take advantage of the card’s bonus rewards in a variety of travel categories. Many travel cards only earn generous bonus rewards for airline or hotel purchases or for travel booked through the issuer’s travel portal. But the Wander card is more flexible, giving you more freedom to book travel the way you like.
  • Biggest drawbacks : There are no transfer partners, so your points are worth a maximum of 1 cent each. Plus, the card has fewer perks compared to other mid-level cards with a similar annual fee.
  • Alternatives : Your options are limited if you’re looking for another travel card open to people with fair credit. But many Capital One cards like the Capital One Walmart Rewards® Mastercard® or the Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card could help you rack up a lot of rewards that you can use to help cover the cost of travel. You can also take advantage of convenient and cost-saving features found in the Capital One Travel Portal.
  • Bottom line : This card is a solid pick for credit-builders who also want to earn travel rewards.

Read our Credit One Bank Wander® Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best for United MileagePlus members: United Quest℠ Card

  • Best features : Even semi-frequent United flyers can come out ahead with this mid-tier airline credit card, thanks to all the ways the card’s perks can offset its $250 annual fee. That includes multiple anniversary credits, priority boarding, checked baggage fee waivers and the up to $100 credit for TSA Precheck or Global Entry application fee.
  • Biggest drawbacks : Unlike other airline cards with a high annual fee, the United Quest doesn’t offer complimentary lounge access. Plus, the sign-up bonus has a high spend requirement: You’ll need to spend $4,000 in the first three months to earn the sign-up bonus of 70,000 miles plus   500 Premier Qualifying Points.
  • Alternatives : If the annual fee doesn’t fit your budget, the United℠ Explorer Card is worth a look since it has a $0 intro annual fee (then $95 annually), but still carries a generous sign-up bonus, priority boarding, purchase and travel protections and an up to $100 credit for TSA Precheck or Global Entry application fee.
  • Bottom line : The United Quest Card packs in a lot of perks and value, making it a solid pick for loyal United travelers looking for an enhanced travel experience.

Read our United Quest℠ Card review or jump back to this card’s offer details .

Best hotel credit card: Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card

  • Best features : This card offers great long-term value for frequent travelers who stay at the world’s largest hotel chain a few nights or more per year. You get plenty of chances to offset the $95 annual fee, including a free night every year after your account anniversary (up to 35,000 points) and a high rewards rate in the popular, practical bonus categories of travel, grocery, gas and dining purchases, as well as a flat rate of 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Biggest drawbacks : You can only use your rewards with Marriott hotels. So if you don’t frequent the brand, you’ll be better served by a different hotel credit card or a general-purpose travel rewards card, which offers greater flexibility in how you redeem your rewards.
  • Alternatives : If you’re not loyal to one hotel chain, the Chase Sapphire Preferred should give you more redemption options. It earns bonus points on travel, dining and select online grocery purchases – points that can be redeemed in a variety of ways, including for travel, or transferred to one of Chase’s airline or hotel partners. And when you redeem for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, your points have 25% more value.
  • Bottom line : Travelers who stay at Marriott frequently enough to offset the $95 annual fee will appreciate this card. But depending on your spending habits and the hotel features that matter most to you, you may get greater value with another Marriott card .

Read our Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card review .

Best no annual fee airline card: American Airlines AAdvantage® MileUp® Card

  • Best features : This no-annual-fee airline card gives households a chance to earn miles on more than just travel. You’ll earn 2X miles not only on eligible American Airlines purchases, but also at grocery stores, which increases the card’s earning potential for the average consumer. The MileUp card also has a low spend threshold for its sign-up bonus: Spend just $500 in your first three months and you’ll earn 10,000 miles and a $50 statement credit.
  • Biggest drawbacks : This card lacks a number of cost-saving perks found with other airline cards, including a free first checked bag for you and additional passengers and a chance to earn travel credits for your spending. Depending on how often you fly and how many people you travel with, you could actually save more money with a travel card that charges an annual fee.
  • Alternatives : The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card has a similar rewards rate and charges no annual fee for the first year, then $99 thereafter. That gives you time to test out perks you won’t find with the MileUp card, like priority boarding, a first checked bag free for you and eight additional passengers and a chance to earn a $100 flight credit after spending $10,000 in a calendar year.
  • Bottom line : This card is worth a look if you’re loyal to American Airlines but only fly occasionally and are looking for a no-annual-fee credit card . But if you want the flexibility to fly with different carriers while still earning high rewards, you may get better value out of a general-purpose travel rewards card.

Read our American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp review .

How do travel credit cards work?

Travel rewards credit cards let you earn points or miles you can redeem for travel purchases. Some offer a flat rate on general purchases, but many offer bonus rewards for typical travel purchases or everyday spending categories, like restaurants, gas or even groceries.

Earning points or miles is usually as easy as swiping your card, and some cards provide limited-time offers and sign-up bonuses to add more incentives. The basics of points and miles cards are pretty much the same. You earn and accumulate rewards by making purchases with your card, and redeem for a discount on your next trip.

Your redemption options will vary by card. Most require that you redeem points or miles for travel purchases. (Some let you redeem for gift cards or cash back, but it might be at a lower value.) You can typically redeem points or miles by booking future trips through a designated portal, like Amextravel.com or Chase Ultimate Rewards, or transferring rewards to an issuer’s travel partners to book flights or hotel stays. Some allow you to redeem for a statement credit on travel purchases made within a certain time frame.

Your redemption options will vary by card. Typical options include:

  • Booking new travel
  • Transferring points or miles to a travel partner
  • Statement credit for past travel purchases

Redeeming for travel often yields the best value, while non-travel options like gift cards might have a lower redemption value. You can typically redeem points or miles by booking future trips through a designated portal, like Amextravel.com or Chase Ultimate Rewards, though some let you redeem directly with the airline or third-party travel agency.

General travel credit cards + –

General travel or general-purpose credit cards aren’t tied to or co-branded with a particular airline or hotel. They are best for any traveler who values flexibility in how they earn and redeem rewards.

Depending on the card, you can earn higher points not only on travel-related purchases, but also in popular categories like groceries, gas and dining. You can redeem the points you earn in many different ways, like statement credits and travel. A 1-cent-per-point value is typical, but points may be worth less when used for non-travel options or more if transferred to the right travel partner.

Transferring your points over to an airline or hotel loyalty program can help you strategize so you can get the most out of your points. However, average point values vary from program to program, so you’ll need to test out different routes and carriers to see how far your points can take you before you transfer points between loyalty programs.

Some of the most popular rewards programs for general travel credit cards include:

  • American Express Membership Rewards
  • Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Capital One Travel
  • Citi ThankYou Points

Is a general travel credit card worth it?

Co-branded cards usually feature high-value airline or hotel perks. Examples like automatic hotel elite status, companion passes or free checked bags could be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

But general travel cards give you more flexibility to choose how you travel and where you stay. Plus, plenty of general travel cards come loaded with valuable benefits not tied to specific airlines and hotels — especially if you’re willing to pay an annual fee.

Most general travel cards carry higher rewards rates compared to airline cards with similar annual fees, which gives you a chance to earn more rewards faster. And you’ll have a number of redemption options that make each of your points worth at least 1 cent, which is worth more than the rewards you’ll earn with most hotel rewards programs and some airline rewards programs.

Here’s a look at some of the top features your general travel card may offer:

  • Annual travel credits : Premium cards like the Capital One Venture X and Chase Sapphire Reserve reward cardmembers with annual travel credits worth hundreds of dollars, which you can use to offset previous travel costs or book new travel through the card’s travel portal.
  • Airport lounge access : A number of mid-level and premium travel cards offer discounted or complimentary airport lounge access for you and your guests. Users can enjoy amenities like complimentary food and drinks, showers or even spa treatments. Popular airport lounge networks include Priority Pass lounges and the exclusive American Express Global Lounge Collection.
  • Luxury hotel benefits : Your card issuer may offer Visa or Mastercard’s luxury hotel collection benefit. This perk can lead to room upgrades, free breakfast, food or beverage credits and late check-out. This is typically offered with credit cards with Visa Signature or Infinite benefits or cards with Mastercard World or World Elite benefits, though you’ll have to check with your card issuer to be certain.
  • Car rental elite status : With the right general travel rewards card, you can not only rent a car but also get discounts and status upgrades that let you skip the lines when renting and returning, as well as vehicle upgrades based on availability and other exclusive perks.

Airline travel credit cards + –

Airline credit cards are co-branded cards that carry the name of the card issuer and a particular airline. They’re a great fit for travelers who regularly fly with a particular airline and can take advantage of the perks found within its rewards program.

Some of the most popular airline rewards programs include:

  • Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
  • American Airlines Aadvantage
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards
  • Delta SkyMiles
  • United MileagePlus

Like general travel cards, airline rewards cards can earn rewards on a variety of purchases, but your redemption options are more limited. To get the best value, you’ll typically want to redeem your rewards for flights with the airline or one of its partners.

Is an airline credit card worth it?

They offer less flexibility and might have an annual fee, but airline cards can make your travel experience easier and save you a lot of money, even after you factor in the cost of an annual fee.

Here’s a look at some of the top airline credit card benefits:

  • Free checked bags :   Avoid paying a fee for your first checked bag and a travel companion’s bag. Many airlines charge $30 to $35 per checked bag, per trip, so the savings can add up, especially if you’re traveling with a large family.
  • Fast track to elite airline status : Frequent flyers looking for an enhanced flying experience will have to spend thousands of dollars and spend a lot of time in the air to unlock the top-of-the-line perks that come with elite status. But the right airline credit card can cut down on the eligibility requirements and may even come with automatic elite status or welcome offers and additional credits that get you elite status faster.
  • Travel companion pass : Earning an airline companion pass takes some work, but if you qualify you can bring a passenger along on a future flight for free (though you’ll still have to pay taxes and fees). Some airlines even offer companion passes that let you bring a guest with you on any flight you book for a year or more.
  • Priority boarding : This perk helps you quickly board a plane and get your carry-on stowed away in an overhead bin before it fills up.
  • In-flight discounts : This perk helps you save on drinks, snacks and other extras purchased on your flight. You’ll typically enjoy a discount of 20% to 25% off.

How to choose an airline

It’s best to select a card co-branded with an airline that you will use frequently, which typically means choosing an airline that flies out of an airport close to where you live, or one that you use the most. Smaller hubs may have limited options, but you should check to make sure that the airline you want has routes at your preferred airport. For example, Southwest does not fly out of Newark Airport, so if Newark is your primary airport another co-branded airline card might be a better fit.

Hotel travel credit cards + –

Hotel credit cards are co-branded cards that earn points you can redeem for stays with a specific hotel chain. Some of the most popular hotel rewards programs include:

  • Marriott Bonvoy
  • Hilton Honors
  • IHG One Rewards Club
  • World of Hyatt

Is a hotel credit card worth it?

Like airline credit cards, hotel credit cards can pack in a lot of brand-specific perks to reward your loyalty. Some cards offer supersized rewards rates, typically for hotel-related purchases. These earning rates can make it easier to quickly rack up points for future visits.

On top of the high-earning potential, hotel travel cards may also come with some of the following benefits:

  • Free night : Many hotel cards automatically reward you with a free night at select properties every year on your anniversary. Others give you a chance to earn a free night after you spend a certain amount on the card.
  • Room upgrades : Your card could automatically qualify you for room upgrades when available, giving you more space or better views.
  • Elite hotel status : Some of the best hotel cards come with automatic elite status, making you eligible for exclusive perks, while others put you on a fast track to achieve higher levels of elite status.

How to choose a hotel

While you should pick an airline card based on frequency and availability, choosing a hotel card might come down to personal preference. You’ll find most hotel chains concentrated in mid-to large-size cities, so you can select a hotel group that works best for your needs. Hotel chains often include a price range from luxury to budget friendly. For example, Marriott includes both Fairfield Inn & Suites and the Ritz-Carlton in its suite of hotels. So, whether you splurge on one trip or save costs on another, you can still earn rewards.

However, if you happen to travel a lot to very remote cities, you might want to ensure that your preferred hotel chain has a location there.

Business travel credit cards + –

Business travel cards are a terrific option if you own a company or work as a freelancer and travel often for work. They can be co-branded or a general travel card.

Some of the more popular business cards include:

  • The Business Platinum Card® from American Express review
  • Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card

Is a business travel card worth it?

Business travel cards offer a competitive rewards structure similar to other travel cards, but you can typically earn bonus rewards in business categories, like purchasing software and office supplies. Not only can business travel cards help keep your work and personal expenses separate, but they can also help you cut down on business costs.

You might see these benefits on a business travel card:

  • Bonus rewards on large purchases : Some cards will offer an elevated rewards rate for big purchases, so you can earn miles or points for big-ticket items.
  • No fee for employee cards : You can rack up even more points or miles when you add employees as authorized users at no additional cost. This action can also be a great way to track company spending.
  • Account management tools: To help manage your company budget, business travel cards might come with apps or programs that could ease record keeping, like the ability to upload receipts quickly or link to a spreadsheet.
  • Travel and hotel perks : Like other travel cards, you can often enjoy annual benefits, like a hotel reward night, lounge access or statement credits.

Co-branded travel cards versus general travel cards

The biggest difference between co-branded cards and general travel cards is flexibility. Co-branded cards are ideal for brand loyalists who prefer to commit to one particular airline or hotel group. They often come with perks that you might not find on general travel cards (like elite status or free checked bags), but how you earn and redeem rewards is limited to that specific brand.

For instance, you might feel locked in to book a pricier room with a co-branded hotel card even if there are more affordable options.

With general travel cards, you have more freedom to select flights or hotels that fit into your schedule and price range, but you might lose out on some perks. If you prefer flexibility, a general travel card might work better for you. If you enjoy more elite perks or are a fan of a particular brand, you might consider a co-branded card.

Pros and cons of travel credit cards

  • Travel for less: Money-saving benefits, such as high travel reward rates, sign-up bonuses and travel credits, can help bring down the overall cost of travel.
  • Generous perks: The best travel cards feature perks like room or seat upgrades, free hotel stays, statement credits and lounge access that might enhance your overall travel experience.
  • Fast track to elite status: Elite status, which offers maximum program benefits for airlines or hotels, often takes time to earn. Some travel rewards cards help cut down on the qualification period, or they offer automatic elite status, which means you can start earning elite status benefits sooner.
  • Earn points as a loyalty member along with rewards : If you are a loyalty member, then you can earn loyalty points with that hotel or airline brand as well as travel reward points when you book with a travel credit card.
  • No foreign transaction fees : Most travel cards don’t charge a foreign transaction fee, which can help cut down costs when traveling abroad.
  • Complex rewards programs: Keeping up with the travel rewards card program rules can be confusing, especially when redeeming or transferring points to a travel partner. It takes careful planning and calculation to ensure you are maximizing the value for your rewards.
  • Limited redemption outside of travel: Travel cards typically provide the best value when redeeming for travel. While some cards offer redemptions for non-travel options, such as statement credits or gift cards, these are typically worth less.
  • High annual fees: Determining whether an annual fee is worth it can be difficult, and many of the best travel credit cards have yearly costs starting from $95 to $100. Premier travel cards could have annual fees in the $200 to $700 range.
  • Higher interest rates : Typically, travel cards carry a higher ongoing APR, so if you carry a balance every month, then a low-interest credit card or balance transfer card might be a better fit.
  • Typically best only for frequent flyers : Since most travel cards offer the most elevated bonus rates for travel, such as flights, hotels and car rentals, you won’t reap its maximum benefits unless you fly often.

Who should get a travel credit card

  • Frequent flyers . If you spend lots of time up in the air or staying at hotels, you can absolutely benefit from the rewards and perks that come with a travel credit card. But if you’re new to travel or only travel occasionally, look for no-annual-fee cards or ones with simple rewards categories. All globetrotters can appreciate the lack of foreign transaction fees many travel cards offer.
  • Brand loyalists . Fans of particular airlines and hotel chains can reap some serious rewards with their go-to brands. Loyal customers can rack up an incredible amount of hotel points or flight miles using a card like the American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp or the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless.
  • Luxury travelers . Vacationers looking for top-shelf travel perks may have to pay to carry their card, but The Platinum Card from American Express and the Chase Sapphire Reserve offer benefits that can easily offset their annual fees. You’ll find high-end earnings rates on your purchases to back it up. Take advantage of exclusive add-ons, like access to airport lounges, free checked bags, specialty offers and more.
  • Road trippers . Some travel cards earn rewards on purchases at gas stations and hotel stays, which can be valuable if you’re on the road a lot. A hotel credit card like one in the Hilton Honors program or Marriott Bonvoy may be a great choice if you regularly take cross-country trips and stay at hotels.

Who should skip a travel credit card

  • Fans of low-maintenance credit cards. While flat-rate travel cards are available, travel cards with fixed bonus categories or a tiered rewards structure often have the best rewards rates. The card that’s most fitting for you will depend on your spending habits. If you aren’t ready or willing to strategize to get the most out of your travel card, a more straightforward rewards credit card may be a better fit.
  • Someone looking for flexibility . Cash back credit cards are usually more versatile and might work best for infrequent travelers or people with higher non-travel-related expenses. They can help you maximize your earnings on everyday categories like supermarkets, gas, transit, streaming services or online purchases. Mostly, redeeming can be far less complicated and far more flexible. Depending on the credit card, redemption options may include statement credit, direct deposit, check and travel.
  • Someone prone to overspending . The best travel rewards credit cards can help you save a lot of money but only if you avoid a balance. Since rewards cards typically come with higher interest rates, paying your balances in full can save you money and create the best value. If you can’t, you run the risk of losing more money to interest charges than you earn in rewards. You may even fall into credit card debt. If you aren’t able to pay your balances in full, consider a low-interest credit card .

Do you know how much your points or miles are worth?

Choosing a card based solely on the number of miles or points you stand to earn can be a costly mistake. Redemption values can vary, and points and miles do not always transfer on a 1-to-1 basis, meaning 1,000 “miles” earned do not always translate to 1,000 miles of travel.

For example, the Citi Premier card has a sign-up bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in your first three months of account opening. With the Premier card, most redemption options have a baseline value of 1 cent, so this offer can be worth at least $600. But based on Bankrate’s latest point valuations , we estimate that the right high-value transfer partner could boost your point value up to 1.9 cents on average. That could make your sign-up bonus worth an incredible $1,140.

Compare that to a card like the IHG One Rewards Premier Credit Card, which offers a sign-up bonus of 140,000 points after spending $3,000 within the first three months. Since IHG Rewards are estimated to be worth 0.7 cents on average based on our points valuation, that comes out to a value of $980 dollars.

Understanding the true value of your rewards program can help you to maximize value and select the card that offers the best rewards for your spending habits.

How to calculate the value of your points and miles

To find the value of your points and miles, divide the cost of paying cash for the booking (such as the plane ticket or hotel room) by the number of points or miles required. Then compare this number to Bankrate’s points and miles valuation for the airline, hotel or credit card rewards program.

For example, if a flight on Southwest Airlines costs $800 out of pocket or 50,000 miles, the value is 1.6 cents per mile ($800 divided by 50,000 miles equals $0.016 or 1.6 cents). Since this is slightly higher than our estimated value of 1.5 cents per mile, you’re getting a good deal if you book this flight.

But if you redeem for a gift card instead and find a $25 card costs 10,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards miles, your value drops to 0.25 cents per mile ($25 divided by 10,000 miles equals $0.0025 or 0.25 cents). Since this is far below the 1.5-cent-per-point value you should look for, you’re better off using cash for this gift card and saving your points for a better deal.

How to compare travel credit cards

Deciding which travel credit card is best for you can be difficult. Many cards have similar redemption options, earn rewards in the same categories or cost more than you’re willing to pay for an annual fee. The right card for you will provide value with both perks and rewards rates that match your needs and align with purchases you already make.

To find the right one, you may find it helpful to compare several cards at once so you can see which one offers the best value for your personal finances and travel habits.

  • Are you an occasional or frequent traveler? Frequent travelers typically have an easier time taking advantage of the numerous perks found with a travel card. If you travel less frequently, then a cash back card may make more financial sense.
  • Are you loyal to a certain airline or hotel? If you’re a fan of a particular airline or hotel chain, you can enjoy specific benefits with that company’s co-branded travel card, like companion pass or annual hotel credits. A general-purpose card, however, gives you flexibility to choose any travel partner when traveling.
  • What travel perks and protections matter most to you? Higher rewards status with hotels or airlines, access to airport lounges or automatic elite status are a few examples of travel perks a card might offer. You can also have more peace of mind with any travel protections that a travel card might provide, like trip cancellation and interruption insurance, lost baggage insurance and 24/7 global assistance. Make sure to look for a card that has the features that matter most to you.
  • Do you have to change your spending habits to earn and redeem rewards?  Rather than tailoring your spending to match a card’s bonus categories, you might choose a card that already rewards your typical spending habits. Also, watch out for restrictions like spending limits, which can hinder your ability to earn maximum rewards. And when redeeming, make sure your card provides the best value. Some travel cards don’t provide the best value when redeeming for non-travel-related options, such as gift cards or statement credits.
  • Does the card have sign-up bonuses and annual fees?  A card’s welcome offer can boost your first year earnings. Look for the spend requirement to ensure you can meet it without overspending. Additionally, a card’s annual fee can be a significant factor. Cards with high annual fees often offer some of the best rewards and perks, but if you can’t offset the fee every year it might not be worth it.
  • How does the card’s international acceptance and foreign fees measure up?  For people who frequently travel internationally, this detail can be a game changer. A card without a foreign transaction fee can help budget your trip. But you also want to make certain that the card has broad international coverage. Some cards, like Discover, while working on their international network, might be riskier to carry abroad.

How to make the most out of your travel credit card

Whether you’re planning a quick getaway or extended trip, your rewards from a travel credit card can either enhance your experience or save you money. If you have your eye on Walt Disney World or a small family gathering, you can use these strategies now to experience an elevated trip in the future.

  • Score a welcome offer . To make the most of your purchases and capitalize on travel rewards, seek out a welcome offer with an affordable spend requirement. Some of the top sign-up offers could be large enough to help you score free travel.
  • Take advantage of the card’s bonus rewards categories . Find a travel rewards card that offers bonus points for purchases you already make to supercharge your earnings. For example, if your weekly work plans include lunch outside of the office, you could earn 3 points for every $1 spent at restaurants as a Citi® Premier cardholder, maximizing your earnings potential.
  • Consider a travel card that earns transferable points . Transferable points are points earned with one travel card that can be redeemed with another participating program. Based on Bankrate’s latest point valuations, the right high-value transfer partner could be the best way to maximize your rewards earnings.
  • Don’t forget your credit card benefits . Your travel credit card could have hidden credit card perks that make travel more enjoyable and save you money, such as complimentary breakfast at hotels or free checked bags. In just one trip, a family of four could easily offset a card’s annual fee through baggage fees alone. Other benefits, such as lost baggage coverage, not only reimburse you for clothing, toiletries or medication you had to purchase because of delayed or lost luggage, but provide additional peace of mind while traveling.
  • Consider a credit card combination . Pair your travel card with another credit card that earns high rewards in areas you spend the most to maximize value. You may even be able to combine cards within the same rewards program. Chase, American Express, Capital One and Citi all offer some of the best credit card combinations that can help you rack up transferable rewards.
  • Skip the foreign transaction fees . Make sure to take along a card that skips this common overseas charge, typically 3% charge anytime you use the card internationally. You can avoid this by choosing a travel credit card that waives foreign transaction fees, such as the Capital One and Discover credit cards.

Alternatives to Travel Credit Cards

If you don’t want to commit to a travel card, but still want to earn travel rewards, then you have options.

  • A cash back credit card lets you earn cash rewards, which you can often redeem for a statement credit to cover travel and other purchases.
  • A card with a 0% intro APR might work better for people planning a large purchase. It can help you budget for a trip, as long as you can pay off the balance before the intro offer period ends.
  • A no-annual-fee card that also carries no foreign transaction fees might suit infrequent travelers. With this type of card, you can still save on trips abroad without worrying about added fees or offsetting costs every year.

In the news: What is credit card travel insurance?

Travel insurance, or trip insurance, is a policy providing reimbursement or resources if something goes wrong during your trip. The coverage of the trip insurance varies depending on if it’s provided through a credit card or purchased as a separate policy.

Credit cards may provide a form of trip insurance when you use your card to pay for trip-related expenses. Credit card travel insurance can cover everything from trip cancellation and trip interruption, to lost luggage and car rental loss and damage insurance.

In some cases, the coverage provided by the credit card may be enough to cover your needs for a travel-related event. But confirm the benefits before you travel and make sure it offers the right coverage, for example, if you are traveling internationally or need a “cancel for any reason” policy.

How we picked the best travel cards

Research methodology : We analyzed 300 travel rewards credit cards to identify the best offers currently on the market. The major factors we considered include:

  • Rewards rate : Does the card offer a competitive rewards rate for the travel category? For general purpose travel cards, this rate is generally between 1.25X to 2X rewards. For co-branded hotel or airline credit cards, we looked for a rate between 3X and 10X points on brand purchases, plus a competitive rate in other bonus categories.
  • Welcome offer : Annual fee travel credit cards, in particular, may offer a welcome bonus valued between $500 to $900. We considered the value of the sign-up bonus, alongside the required spend to receive it.
  • Additional travel perks : We considered whether the card offers additional travel benefits beyond base rewards. For instance, for airline credit cards, we considered whether they offered priority boarding, a free checked bag or lounge access. For hotel credit cards, we considered whether they offered upgrade opportunities for Wi-Fi and free hotel stays with a card anniversary. For premium travel credit cards, we considered whether the card touted travel credits, travel insurance and other benefits that justified the high annual fee.
  • Rates and fees : Travel credit cards do tend to carry annual fees and higher APRs than low-interest credit cards. However, we considered how a card’s APRs compared to the current credit card industry average and whether any fees could be avoided or recouped by its travel rewards and benefits.

All criteria used : Rewards rates, rewards categories, sign-up bonus, point values, transfer partners, redemption options, redemption flexibility, annual fee, other rates and fees, travel credits, airport lounge access, travel accident insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, concierge service, other travel benefits, travel portal functionality, credit needed, customer service, events or other perks

More information on travel credit cards

For more information on all things travel cards, continue reading content from our credit card experts:

  • Cash back vs. points
  • Trip cancelation reimbursement by credit card
  • No foreign transaction fee credit cards

Frequently asked questions about travel credit cards

What is the difference between points and miles on a credit card + –.

When you’re shopping for a travel credit card, you’ll likely have two rewards currencies to choose from: points and miles.

Credit card points are the more flexible of the two options, usually allowing you to redeem your rewards for flights or hotel stays with a number of brands. Some cards allow you to redeem points for cash back, gift cards or merchandise, but often at a lower value than a travel redemption.

Credit card miles usually refer to frequent-flyer miles with a particular airline, such as Delta or United. If you have a miles-earning card, this usually means you can only redeem your miles for flights with one particular airline, though there are exceptions. These types of cards are also called co-branded cards and often come with additional perks like free checked bags.

What credit score do you need for a travel credit card? + –

Travel credit cards often feature higher rewards rates and numerous benefits, which typically means the odds of approval are higher for someone with a good or excellent credit score — usually around a 670 FICO score or higher.

But someone with bad or fair credit still has options. Although the credit card may not be labeled specifically as a travel rewards card, cards like the Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card don’t require great credit and offer rewards in travel categories like hotels and rental cars.

Do travel points and miles expire? + –

Typically, rewards won’t expire for the life of the account. However, each card is different so it’s always best to read your card’s terms and conditions. For instance, some cards do have rewards that expire after a period of inactivity. In some cases, you could forfeit your rewards by missing a payment or canceling a card . Every card comes with its own set of rules, so always read the fine print.

How many miles do you need for a free flight? + –

The miles you’ll need for a free flight depend on the type of card you have, its rewards and redemption structure and whether it offers bonus value on travel redemptions.

For example, If you book through Amex, your points are worth 1 cent apiece on travel redemptions. That means if a flight costs $500, you’ll need 50,000 points to book. However, with Chase Ultimate Rewards, points are valued at 1.25 cents, so a $500 trip would need only 25,000 points.

What purchases are part of the travel category for travel credit cards? + –

How purchases are categorized depends on both the merchant and the issuer and may vary from card to card. Typically, bookings for airlines, hotel stays and rental cars will fall under travel. However, some cards, such as the Bank of America Travel Rewards card, broaden the category to include other types of purchases like timeshares, campgrounds and parking garages.

Check the issuer’s website or contact the issuer directly to get a complete list of what is considered travel for your specific card.

About the Author

Jeanine Skowronski

Jeanine Skowronski

Jeanine Skowronski is a credit card expert, analyst, and multimedia journalist with over 10 years of experience covering business and personal finance. She has previously served as the Head of Content at Policygenius, Executive Editor of Credit.com, Deputy Editor at American Banker, Staff Reporter at TheStreet and a columnist for Inc. Magazine.

About the Editor

Robert Thorpe

Robert Thorpe

Robert Thorpe is an editor for CreditCards.com

About the Reviewer

Stephanie Zito

Stephanie Zito

Stephanie Zito is a professional traveler, humanitarian and credit card points collector sharing savvy travel tips she has learned firsthand from more than 20 years of circling the globe as a backpacker, expat and premium traveler in more than 125 countries and all seven continents.

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The 6 Best Travel Cards for the US 2024

If you live in the US but travel often abroad, a travel money card can make spending in foreign currencies cheaper and more convenient. Travel money cards also have the bonus that they can be cheaper when you shop online with foreign retailers, as there’s often no foreign transaction fee to pay.

Different types of travel money cards, including travel debit cards, prepaid travel cards and travel credit cards, are available to support different customer needs. The right one for you will depend on your personal preference and how you like to manage your money. 

Read on for all you need to know, including a closer look at travel money card types, some great options to consider, and the sorts of fees you need to think about when you choose. 

Wise – good value debit card for the US

Before we get into details about different travel money card options, let’s start with the Wise card as a good all-round option that allows you to hold and spend US dollars, as well as a diverse range of other world currencies.

Wise account can hold and exchange 40+ currencies, and you can get a linked Wise card for a one time delivery fee. Top up your account in USD and you can spend locally and overseas conveniently. If you plan to travel, you can switch to the currency you need before you travel, so you know your travel money budget in advance - or if you’d prefer, you can simply allow the card to automatically switch currencies as and when you need it. All currency conversion uses the mid-market exchange rate, with low fees from 0.43%.

Plus you can get USD bank account details - as well as local account details for up to 8 other currencies - to get paid conveniently to your Wise account . If you’re receiving money in USD to Wise, it’s free to get paid by ACH, and there’s a low 4.14 USD fee to receive a wire. There’s no fee to receive any of the other 9 currencies which come with local bank details.

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of using the Wise travel money debit card, to help you decide if it's suitable for you.

What is a travel money card?

A travel money card can be used for payments online and in stores, and for cash withdrawals , just like your regular bank card can be. You can use your travel money card in the US just as conveniently as you can when you travel or shop online with overseas retailers. However, with a travel money card you’ll find the features and fees have been optimized for international use . That might mean you get a better exchange rate compared to using your normal card overseas, or that you run into fewer fees. Some travel cards also have options to earn cashback and rewards when you use your card internationally. 

6 travel money cards for the US compared

We’ll look at each of these card options in a little more detail in just a moment, but let’s start with an overview of how 6 top travel money cards for the US line up side by side:

As you can see, the features of different travel money cards can vary pretty widely. In general travel debit cards can be convenient and often fairly cheap to use, while travel credit cards can offer some nice perks like cashback or rewards - but do mean you might run into interest and late payment charges, depending on how you choose to pay.

Travel debit cards often let you top up a linked account online or through an app, so you can set your budget and can’t spend more than you intend. Travel credit cards on the other hand let you spend to your card limit, and then repay the amount over a few months if you’d prefer to. Which is best for you will come down to how you like to manage your money - we’ll dive into a few more details about each card type, next.

What are different types of travel cards?

Broadly speaking, US customers are able to select a travel money card from either a regular bank or a specialist provider, which may be a travel debit card, travel prepaid card or a travel credit card. We’ll walk through what each travel money card type is, and pick out a couple of good card options, so you can compare and choose.

  • Travel debit cards
  • Travel prepaid cards
  • Travel credit cards

1. Travel Debit Cards for the US

Travel debit cards are usually offered by specialist providers, with linked digital accounts you can use to hold and convert a currency balance. That makes them equally convenient to use in the US when spending in dollars, when shopping online with retailers overseas, and when you travel. While different cards have their own features, travel debit cards can usually be topped up easily online and through an app, with the option to see your balance and get transaction notifications through your phone too. That makes it easier to keep on top of your money, no matter where in the world you are.

Travel debit card Option 1: Wise

Wise is a good value travel money debit card for the US. There’s no fee to open a Wise account, and just a small delivery fee for your Wise card, with no minimum balance and no monthly charge. You just pay low Wise fees from 0.43% when you convert currencies, and transparent ATM fees when you exhaust the monthly free transactions available with your account.

  • No fee to open a Wise account , no minimum balance requirement
  • 9 USD one time fee to get your Wise card
  • 2 withdrawals, to 100 USD value per month for free, then 1.5 USD + 2%
  • Hold 40+ currencies, convert between them with the mid-market rate
  • Get local account details to receive USD and 9 other currencies conveniently

Travel debit card Option 2: Revolut

Revolut has a selection of different account tiers, so you can simply pick the account you prefer - from Standard plans with no monthly fee to the 16.99 USD/month Metal plan. All Revolut accounts have linked cards, although exactly what type of card you get depends on your account tier. You can hold around 25 currencies, and convert currencies with the mid-market rate to your plan’s allowance. 

  • No monthly fee if you open a Standard Revolut account, or upgrade for up to 16.99 USD/month 
  • Card delivery fees may apply depending on your account tier
  • All accounts have some fee free weekday currency conversion with 0.5% fair usage fees after that. Out of hours and exotic currency fees may apply in some cases
  • Standard plan holders can withdraw 400 USD overseas per month without paying fees
  • Hold USD and around 25 other currencies

Pros and cons of using debit travel cards in the US

How to choose the best travel debit card for the us.

The best travel debit card for USA really depends on your personal preferences and how you like to manage your money. If you’ll be traveling widely it makes sense to look for an account with mid-market currency exchange and a large selection of supported currencies, like Wise . Other providers like Revolut can also be a good pick, particularly if you’ll use your account very frequently and would prefer to pay a monthly fee to unlock lots of no fee transactions and extra perks.

Is there a spending limit with a travel debit card in the US?

Different providers set their own limits for card use. Limits may apply daily, weekly or monthly, and can apply to different types of transactions. You might find you have a limit to the amount of ATM withdrawals you can make per day, for example, or the value of contactless payments - these limits are set for security and can sometimes be managed and changed in the provider’s app.

2. Prepaid Travel Cards for the US

With a prepaid travel card you’ll need to order a card and add funds, to pay merchants and make cash withdrawals. While prepaid travel cards are usually issued on large global networks - and can therefore be used pretty widely - not all cards are accepted globally, so you’ll need to check network coverage in your destination country.

Prepaid travel card option 1: Bluebird American Express prepaid debit card

You can order a Bluebird prepaid debit card for free online. You’ll then be able to top up in cash or from a bank account. You can also add checks or have funds deposited by others - fees apply for some top up methods. While this card doesn’t allow you to hold foreign currencies, you won’t pay a foreign transaction fee to spend your USD balance abroad, which makes it a good choice when you’re away from home.

  • Get a card for free by ordering online
  • Top up in a range of ways in USD
  • No foreign transaction fee when spending overseas
  • ATM withdrawal fees of 2.5 USD or the equivalent when overseas
  • American Express cards are not always accepted internationally - check coverage before you travel
  • No interest to pay 

Prepaid travel card option 2: Discover it Secured

Discover it Secured is a credit card, but we’ve included it in our roundup of prepaid cards because it’s a secured card, which means you’ll need to pay an upfront deposit, and can then spend to that deposit level every month. Clear off your bill in full to avoid interest, and you could build a credit score, earn cashback and get no foreign transaction fees when you spend overseas, too.

  • No annual card fee, although interest charges and late payment fees do apply
  • No foreign transaction fees for spending overseas
  • ATM withdrawal fees may apply including a 10 USD cash advance fee
  • Earn cashback on spending and build credit as you do so
  • Discover network is not always internationally supported - check your destination before you travel

Pros and cons of using prepaid travel cards in the US

How to choose the best travel prepaid card for the us.

There’s no single best travel prepaid card for the US - it’ll come down to your personal preferenc e. If you’re looking specifically for a prepaid debit card you can use abroad with no foreign transaction fee, try the Bluebird card option. However, if a credit card suits you, the Discover it Secured can be a strong pick thanks to the cash back options available.  

Is there a spending limit with a prepaid card in the US?

Different prepaid travel cards set their own limits for spending and withdrawals, which can  vary between currencies. You’ll need to check your card’s terms and conditions carefully to make sure you pick a provider which suits your needs.

3. Travel Credit Cards for the US

Travel credit cards typically offer some extra international features compared to regular credit cards, such as low or no foreign transaction fees or extra option to earn rewards when you’re abroad. In general, travel credit cards are safe and convenient but can be more expensive compared to using a debit card option. Before you select the right card for you it’s important to check the fees, rates, eligibility rules and interest rates which apply, so you can make sure it’s a good fit for you.

Travel credit card option 1: Capital One Venture Rewards

The Capital One Venture Rewards card can be used in the US conveniently - and has no foreign transaction fees when you spend overseas. There’s also a comparatively low cash advance fee when you use an ATM, at 3 USD or 3% whichever is higher. You’ll need to repay your bill in full every month to avoid fees and interest, but can earn travel rewards and miles on your day to day spending.

  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Earn travel rewards on spending 
  • Get extras like lounge access and free travel insurance
  • International spending uses the network exchange rate 
  • Variable interest rates which apply if you don’t pay off your bill in full

Travel credit card option 2: Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card has a variable interest rate with no foreign transaction fee to pay. However, you’ll need to pay a 95 USD annual card charge to get your card in the first place. Currency conversion uses the network exchange rate - plus there are benefits and rewards available for cardholders.

  • Variable interest rates and a 95 USD annual fee
  • Check your eligibility and order a card online easily
  • Network exchange rates apply

Pros and cons of using credit cards in the US

How to choose the best travel credit card for the us.

The best travel credit card for the US will depend on your personal preferences. If you’re interested in earning rewards and cash back, a travel rewards card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred could be a good bet as it has no foreign transaction fee and offers rewards on all spending. Whichever card you’re considering you’ll want to weigh up the potential fees you’ll need to pay against the rewards you can earn to make sure it’s worthwhile.

Which cards are accepted in the US?

It’s important to know that you may find that different card networks are more popular in one country than they may be in another. For example, while Visa and Mastercard are pretty widely accepted globally, other popular US card networks, like American Express and Discover cards are less likely to be accepted in some countries and regions. Both networks have some support in the US, but coverage isn’t universal.

If you’re looking for a card specifically to take with you when you travel, it may be worth checking coverage in destinations you visit frequently to help you choose the right network for your needs.

In most cases it’s best to carry more than one means of payment when you travel - for example a credit card and a specialist travel money card which has been issued on a different network - so that you always have a plan B if your preferred payment method isn’t available.

Conclusion: Which travel money card is best for the US?

If you’re living in the US but travel often - or if you shop online with retailers based overseas, you might want to pick a travel money card for foreign currency spending. Travel money cards have different features, and can be picked up via regular banks or online specialists.

You could opt for a low cost travel debit card which comes with a linked account to hold a selection of currencies - like the Wise debit card . Or you might prefer a prepaid travel money card like the Bluebird American Express debit card which can be linked to a fee free account. Finally, another option is to get a travel credit card either to earn cashback and rewards, or to avoid foreign transaction fees. 

Use this guide to start your research and pick the right option for your specific needs.

Go to Wise Go to Revolut

FAQs - Best travel cards for the US 2024

1. Which travel card is best to use in the US and abroad?

There’s no single best travel card to use in the US and when you’re headed abroad. Which is right for you will depend on your preferences and the features you want to access. Having a multi-currency account from a provider like Wise or Revolut can be a good bet if you travel widely as you’ll be able to hold and exchange dozens of major currencies for convenience.

2. What is the best way to pay when traveling outside the US?

Spending with your card is convenient when traveling, but you’ll be best off having several different payment methods just in case your first choice isn’t supported. For example, you could choose 2 different debit or credit cards, issued on different networks, and you could also get foreign currency cash in advance so you have some  on you for those times when cards aren’t available.

3. Can you withdraw cash with a credit card in the US and overseas?

You can usually make cash withdrawals with a credit card in the US and overseas, at any ATM that supports your card network. You’ll often find that a fee applies, and you may start to accumulate interest on the withdrawn amount immediately. Travel money debit cards from providers like Wise and Revolut can be a lower cost option for cash withdrawals locally and abroad.

4. Can I use a US card abroad?

You can use your US card anywhere you see the card network’s logo displayed. Visa and Mastercard networks are very well supported globally, including in the US, making these good options to look out for when you pick your travel debit card for use overseas as well as in the US.

5. Are prepaid cards safe?

Prepaid cards from reputable providers are safe to use at home and abroad. They aren’t linked to your main bank account which can offer extra peace of mind, and may also make it easier to manage your travel budget. However, you’ll need to check the card features and fees carefully to make sure you're getting the best match for your needs.

6. What are the main fees for travel cards when traveling?

The fees applied for travel cards can vary widely depending on the provider and the card type. With debit cards you may find ATM fees, and costs for converting currencies, although specialist providers like Wise and Revolut have linked multi-currency accounts which can bring down the costs of currency conversion. Credit card fees include cash advance charges, foreign transaction fees and interest.

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  • Per Diem Lookup

Government Travel Charge Card Program

GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION                 Washington, DC 20405

OAS 5740.1 CHGE 2 January 17, 2023  

SUBJECT: Government Travel Charge Card Program

  • Purpose . This Order provides guidance for the management and use of the GSA SmartPay® individually-billed account travel charge card (travel card) and centrally-billed account.  
  • Background . The Travel and Transportation Reform Act (TTRA) of 1998 (Public Law 105-264), as implemented by the Federal Travel Regulation and OMB Circular A-123 Appendix B, Improving the Management of Government Charge Card Programs , mandates that Federal Government cardholders use the travel card for official Government travel expenses. Public Law 112-194, the Government Charge Card Abuse Prevention Act of 2012, amends Section 2 of TTRA and outlines the minimum requirements to ensure effective management controls.  
  • Scope and Applicability . This Order provides policy, standards, instructions, and procedures governing the management and use of the travel card. The provisions apply to all GSA employees. This Order applies to the Office of Inspector General (OIG) to the extent that the OIG determines it is consistent with the OIG’s independent authority under the Inspector General Act and does not conflict with other OIG policies or the OIG mission. This Order applies to the Civilian Board of Contract Appeals (CBCA) to the extent that the CBCA determines it is consistent with the CBCA’s independent authority under the Contract Disputes Act and applicable Federal Court decisions and does not conflict with other CBCA policies or its mission.  
  • Cancellation . This Order cancels and supersedes GSA Order OAS 5740.1 CHGE 1.  
  • Summary of Changes . This Order updates policy where needed to reflect the transition of the program to GSA SmartPay® 3, expands the Responsibilities section to update duties of the Chief Administrative Services Officer and Agency/Organization Program Coordinator, changes the title of the Charge Card Coordinator to Travel Card Program Analyst, adds the use of Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) and Innovative Mobility Technology Companies (IMTCs), and removes the Travel Card Program Analyst appointing duties of the Regional Commissioners (RCs) to reflect the consolidation of Travel Card Program Analysts into the Office of Administrative Services (OAS). Minor editorial and clarifications are also made.  
  • Signature .

/S/     _____________________ BOB STAFFORD Chief Administrative Services Officer Office of Administrative Services

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Are you a GSA employee? Use the Directive Library on InSite to access referenced information.

PER DIEM LOOK-UP

1 choose a location.

Error, The Per Diem API is not responding. Please try again later.

No results could be found for the location you've entered.

Rates for Alaska, Hawaii, U.S. Territories and Possessions are set by the Department of Defense .

Rates for foreign countries are set by the State Department .

2 Choose a date

Rates are available between 10/1/2021 and 09/30/2024.

The End Date of your trip can not occur before the Start Date.

Traveler reimbursement is based on the location of the work activities and not the accommodations, unless lodging is not available at the work activity, then the agency may authorize the rate where lodging is obtained.

Unless otherwise specified, the per diem locality is defined as "all locations within, or entirely surrounded by, the corporate limits of the key city, including independent entities located within those boundaries."

Per diem localities with county definitions shall include "all locations within, or entirely surrounded by, the corporate limits of the key city as well as the boundaries of the listed counties, including independent entities located within the boundaries of the key city and the listed counties (unless otherwise listed separately)."

When a military installation or Government - related facility(whether or not specifically named) is located partially within more than one city or county boundary, the applicable per diem rate for the entire installation or facility is the higher of the rates which apply to the cities and / or counties, even though part(s) of such activities may be located outside the defined per diem locality.

Getting around London

Getting around London: Pay as you go and Travelcard prices

London is big. We get it. So working out how to get from A to B can be slightly intimidating.

To help you with your travel planning and budgeting, we've laid out the best ticket options (and how much they cost*) for your time in London. Pay daily or buy a weekly London Travel card - it's up to you.

Daily Travel Card Prices

If you only need to use public transport for a day or two of your trip, TFL's (Transport for London) day pass with a price cap is all you need to know about. It's priced as a London day travel - one day travel pass. Tap in using your bank card as much as you wish throughout the day and you'll never be charged more than the daily London tube prices cap and they can be used for bus travel as well.   

Weekly Travel Card Prices

If you have a week in the city and you know you're going to be bouncing between the London Underground and those iconic red buses, purchasing a weekly London ticket could save you a few pennies. 

*The above prices are controlled by TFL and are subject to change.

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Plans can change, we get it. All non-activated credits packages are eligible for a refund within 90 days of your purchase date.

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London travelcard cost for each zone and fare caps for individual journeys in 2023

Fares rose by 5.9 per cent back in March

  • 12:37, 17 APR 2023

Pay-as-you-go and travelcard fares rose by 5.9 per cent in March 2023

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Back in March 2023, London travelcard prices and rail fares saw a staggering 5.9 per cent increase - the biggest rise in over a decade. Fares across the country have seen hundreds of pounds added to the cost of many annual season tickets, and individual journeys or day travelcards now cost significantly more.

In London, TfL prices all went up with pay-as-you-go fares rising by an increase of 10p to 30p. The price increase also impacted bus and tram fares, daily and weekly caps, daily and weekly travelcards, river bus services and the IFS cloud cable car. The adult peak pay-as-you-go fare for a journey in Zone 1 is now £2.80, while for off-peak it is £2.70.

Before March 2023, a pay-as-you-go single fare was £1.65 on buses, now it is £1.95. The daily cap for zones 1 & 2 used to be £7.70 and a weekly cap of £38.50. Now, it is £8.10 daily and £ 40.70 weekly. In case you've lost track of the new costs, we've compiled a list of the cost of every single travel card in each TFL Zone as well as the maximum fares for a single journey.

READ MORE: Drivers warned of '20p hack' which could save you from being slapped with huge £10k fine

The price of travelcards and pay-as-you-go fares rose back in March

For a one-day anytime or one day off-peak journey it would cost you a maximum of £8.10. For a Monday to Sunday 7-day travelcard, it would cost £40.70 A one-day anytime travelcard would cost £15.20, the same for off-peak journeys. While a 7-day travelcard would cost £40.70, monthly it is £156.30 and annually it is £1,628.

Zone 1 and 2

A Zone 1 & 2 one day anytime journey costs a maximum of £8.10, the same as off-peak. It costs the same amount for a Zone 1 & 2 travelcard as it would for one covering just those individual zones, so £40.70 weekly, £156.30 monthly and £1,628 annually.

Zone 1, 2 and 3

In Zones 1-3 it costs a maximum of £9.60 for a one-day anytime and off-peak journey as if you are travelling within those three zones. It is £47.90 for a 7-day Monday to Sunday ticket. One day anytime or off-peak travelcards cost £15.20, or they are £47.90 for a 7-day, £184 monthly and £1,916 annually.

Zone 1, 2, 4 and 4

A one-day anytime ticket costs a maximum of £11.70, the same as off-peak. A 7-day Monday to Sunday travelcard costs £58.50. One day anytime or off-peak travelcards cost £15.20, or they are £224.70 monthly and £2,340 annually.

Zone 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

One day anytime journeys cost a maximum of £13.90, the same as off-peak and for a 7-day Monday to Sunday ticket it's £69.60. A one-day anytime travelcard costs £21.50 while an off-peak costs £15.20. While a 7-day costs £69.60, monthly it's £267.30 and annually it's £2,784.

Zone 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6

One day anytime costs a maximum of £14.90, the same for off-peak journeys. Monday to Sunday 7-day travelcards cost £74.90. A one-day anytime travelcard costs £21.50, while off-peak costs £15.20. A monthly travelcard is £285.70 and annually it's £2,976.

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  • 🎁️25-IN-1 MONTESSORI TOY - Guolely Montessori toy helps kids natural learning through play. Features 25 Montessori toddler activities, including zippers, shoelaces, buttons, belt buckles, jigsaw puzzles, alphabet, clocks and calendar learning games. Safe preschool learning activities for quiet play and develop fine motor skills, dressing skills, finger dexterity, and cognitive skill.
  • 🎁️ORIGINAL DESIGN BUSY BOARD – Upgraded Designed with more sections and more fun. Compared with other busy boards, ours is based on the original basic life skills learning section, and adds the jigsaw puzzle game, the color and shape recognition section, alphabet section respectively, and clocks & calendar learning games.
  • 🎁️ SAFE EDUCATIONAL TOY - Safe Educational Toy for 1-6 year old toddlers, including autistic. Made made of soft felted wool, ABS material,which is soft, no harm to child. It is very durable and all pieces on the busy board are securely fixed. Keep your kids busy and safe, you can enjoy your time for hours!
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  • 🎁️PERFECT GIFT FOR KIDS - This Montessori busy board is uniquely designed with dinosaurs elements and 26 kinds of animal-shaped English letters to appeal to any child. It is a perfect gift for 1-6 years old toddlers as Birthday, Carnival Prize, Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Contest prizes. Surprise your kids with our amazing busy board.

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Guolely Busy Board Montessori Toys for 1-6 Years Old - Toddler Travel Toys, Educational Busy Book with 10 Pages Soft Daily Learning Activities - Sensory Toy Gift Ideal for Boys, Girls, Kids

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Guolely brand was created by parents who love kids and focus on family Education. Guolely is a puzzle toys brand that inherits German design concept, insists on the “Light up children’s talent” mission, absorbs creative multi-national design, adopts the “Natural, Friendly, Educational” product development philosophy, and provides safe and educational toys for babies, and toddlers all around the world.

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Weekly and Monthly Travelcards excluding Zone 1

Weekly and Monthly Travelcards are available for zones excluding zone 1 (central London). So if you’re working, studying or visiting relatives in the suburbs of London, you don’t need a Travelcard including zone 1 unless you travel through zone 1 to reach your destination or enter or exit a station in zone 1.

Travelcards excluding zone 1 are cheaper and for occasional visits to the centre, you can top up your Oyster card with Pay as you go money to pay the difference between the zones your Travelcard covers and zone 1.

Top Tip: A Travelcard for any zone entitles you to travel by bus all over London, including central London (zone 1).

  • See where to buy a Travelcard
  • See London transport zones to find the zones you need
  • See Travelcard fares including zone 1

Fare below are valid until the beginning of March 2024.

Zone 2–3,4,5 or 6 Travelcards 2024

Zone 3–4,5 or 6 travelcards  2024, zone 4–5 or 6 travelcards 2024, zone 5–6 travelcards 2024, related pages.

  • One day and weekly Travelcards including zone 1
  • Guide to London’s transport tickets
  • London transport zones

Last checked: 5 March 2023

Transport tickets & passes

  • Guide to London's transport tickets
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London Travelcard Prices 2024 - One Day, Weekly & Monthly Pass

  • Adult travelcards
  • Child travelcards
  • What is a travelcard?
  • How long does a travelcard last?
  • Anytime and off-peak
  • Where to buy travelcards
  • Are travelcards the cheapest way to travel?
  • Where to use travelcards
  • Using travelcards on the bus
  • Using travelcards on the train
  • Which is best: travelcards or Oyster?

Travelcard prices for children

What is a london travelcard.

London travelcards come in two different types. The cheapest pass just covers buses and trams, and the more expensive version includes the trains as well.

Travelcard printed on orange National Rail paper

Travelcards bought at a National Rail station (the big overground hubs like Waterloo , shown with a symbol on the London underground map ) are printed on orange paper. Travelcards bought at an underground station are printed on pink paper. Other than the colour of the paper, there is no difference between the two. It’s also possible to load a travel card onto a blue Oyster card . (Note: It is not possible to load them onto a Visitor Oyster card or contactless card .)

Travelcard printed on TFL paper

If you buy a pass that includes the trains then you will also have to choose which fare zones you want it to cover. If you buy a one day travelcard then you’ll only have three options: zones 1-4, zones 1-6 or zones 1-9. If you buy a weekly, monthly or annual travelcard then you can choose a combination of different zones between 1-9.

Important note: there are no trams in central London, only in zone 3 and beyond (in places like Beckenham, Croydon and Wimbledon). So if you buy a zone 1-2 travelcard then you won’t find any trams to travel on.

What are the benefits of a travelcard?

  • London travelcards can cover one day, one week, one month or one year, depending on how long you’re staying in London
  • They’re very easy for tourists to understand: you simply choose the zones and dates you want it to cover, pay once, and then you can make an unlimited number of journeys between those dates
  • Depending on which one you buy, travelcards can be valid on the tram, bus , Docklands Light Railway, London Underground , London Overground, TFL Rail and National Rail
  • You can also benefit from a discounted fare on the cable car and Thames Clipper riverboat

What are the downsides of a travelcard?

  • Depending on how many journeys you make, you might find that Oyster prices and contactless prices are cheaper than travelcard prices
  • You’re only allowed to travel in the fare zones you chose at the start. If you later decide to travel outside the zones then you’ll have to buy a completely separate ticket
  • Two people are not allowed to share one travelcard
  • If you lose a paper travelcard then there’s no way of replacing it, or getting your money back

How long does a London travelcard last?

Travelcards are valid for one day , one week , one month or one year , and you can travel as many times as you like during those periods.

You always have to choose a start date when you buy it. The date can be in the future, but it’s not possible to buy a dateless card.

One Day Travelcards (Anytime) – Valid for the date shown on the ticket, plus any journeys that start before 4.30 AM the next morning

One Day Travelcards (Off-peak) – Valid for the date shown on the ticket, but only after 9.30 AM on Mon-Fri, plus any journeys that start before 4.30 AM the next morning

Weekly, Monthly & Annual Travelcards – Valid between the start date and end date shown on the ticket. And they all have to be consecutive days (it’s not possible to buy a 7 day travel card that skips a day in the middle, for example).

Can two people share one travelcard?

No. Paper travelcards do not have your name on them, but each traveller must still have their own ticket. And you can’t share an Oyster card that has a travelcard loaded on to it either.

What time is Anytime and Off-Peak?

Anytime – Anytime is valid for the dates shown on the ticket, and up to 4.30 AM the following morning. (So if your travelcard expires on the 10th, you can actually travel up to 4.30 AM on the 11th.)

Off-Peak – Off-Peak travelcard holders are restricted to travelling after 9:30 AM on Mon-Fri, but can travel at anytime during the weekend or on a public holiday.

Are travelcards the cheapest way to travel in London?

Lots of people think that travel cards are the cheapest way to travel in London, but that’s not always true.

1-Day Travelcards – The Oyster daily cap and contactless daily cap are always cheaper than the one day travelcard price (by around two-thirds).

Weekly Travelcards – Weekly travelcards are always cheaper than buying seven one day travel cards, but whether it works out cheaper than the Oyster card weekly cap depends on how many journeys you make. If you make two or more journeys on each of the seven days, or three or more journeys on six of the days, then a weekly travelcard is likely cheaper. But the only way of knowing for sure is to add up all your journeys on a calculator (sorry!).

Monthly Travelcards – Monthly travelcards are always cheaper than buying four weekly travel cards.

Annual Travelcards – Annnual passes give you 12 months travel for the price of ten and a half.

Where can you use a London travelcard?

Buses – All travelcards are valid on TFL buses , regardless of which zones they cover. That’s because buses don’t have zones. So if you buy a zone 1-4 travelcard then you can ride the trams and trains in zones 1-4, but you can ride the buses all the way out to zone 6.

Trams – Bus & Tram travelcards don’t have zones, so they’re valid on all the buses, and all the trams. But Train, Bus & Tram travelcards are only valid on the trams if they cover zones 3 and beyond, because there aren’t any trams in zones 1-2.

London Underground, London Overground, Docklands Light Railway, TFL Rail, National Rail – A Train, Bus & Tram travelcard is valid on all of these trains as long as it covers the right zones (you choose which zones you want when you buy it). The exceptions are the Heathrow Express, Gatwick Express and Stansted Express, Heathrow Connect to Hayes and Harlington, and high-speed Southeastern services between St. Pancras and Stratford .

IFS Cloud Cable Car – You can’t actually use your travelcard to ride the cable car , but if you present it at the ticket window you’ll get a 25% discount off the price.

Thames Clipper – You can’t use it on the Thames Clipper river boat service either, but if you show it at the window you’ll get a 33% discount off some of the fares.

Where can you buy travelcards?

Day Travelcards (for Bus & Tram only) – It’s not possible to buy a day travelcard for the Bus & Tram from the TFL website. It’s not possible to buy one in advance either. You can only purchase them on the day of travel from a train station or London Visitor Centre.

There are seven Visitor Centres in London: Euston station , King’s Cross , Liverpool Street , Paddington , Piccadilly Circus , Victoria and Heathrow airport.

These will always come as a paper ticket.

You can also buy a Bus & Tram pass from an Oyster Ticket Stop, but these ones will be put onto an Oyster card instead. Oyster Ticket Stops are just normal shops (usually newsagents) which have a blue Oyster sticker in their window. (Note: The usual £7 deposit will apply if you need to buy a new Oyster card, which will come on top of the day travelcard price. It is not possible to load a travelcard onto a London Visitor Oyster Card .)

Day travelcards do not require a photocard.

Day Travelcards (for Bus, Tram & Train) – Paper tickets for the Bus, Tram & Train are available to buy online from the TFL website and from train stations and Visitor Centres.

Group Day Travelcards – Group Day Travelcards can be ordered from the TFL website . They only last for one day and you need to be travelling in a group of at least ten people during off-peak hours (after 9:30 AM Mon-Fri, or any time during the weekend).

Weekly Travelcards – Weekly Travelcards can be bought online at TFL’s Visitor Shop , You can also have it loaded onto your Oyster card at a train station, Oyster Ticket Stop, London Visitor Centre or TFL’s Oyster website (but you need to set up an Oyster account with them first).

Weekly travelcards do not require a photocard.

Monthly Travelcards – Monthly Travelcards can be loaded onto your Oyster card at train stations, Oyster Ticket Stops, London Visitor Centres and TFL’s Oyster website .

Annual Travelcards – Annual travelcards can be loaded onto your London Oyster card at TFL’s Oyster website , and most London Overground, TFL Rail and National Rail stations… but not London Underground stations, London Visitor Centres or Oyster Ticket Stops.

Which travelcard zones do I need?

Most tourists will spend their entire holiday inside zones 1-2.

Zone 3 is for places like Highgate Cemetery , Kew Gardens , Wimbledon and London City Airport . Zone 4 will take you to Wembley Stadium . And if you’re flying into Heathrow then you might want to buy a zones 1-6 travelcard.

How do you use a bus travelcard?

Oyster card reader on a bus

Using a London bus pass couldn’t be simpler. If you have a paper travelcard then just show it to the driver as you board the bus.

If you have an Oyster travelcard then touch it against the big round yellow reader by the front door (some buses also have Oyster readers by the middle door and back door). There’s no need to touch the travel card down again when you leave the bus – you only have to do that for trains.

How do you use a train travelcard?

Contactless card reader at a train station

Using your travelcard on the London Underground is easy. If you have a paper travelcard then just insert it face-up into the slot at the front of the barrier. The same ticket will then pop out of the slot on the top. The gate won’t open until you remove your travelcard from that slot.

If you have an Oyster travelcard then all you have to do is wave it in front of the big round yellow reader and the gate will open automatically.

Which is best: Travelcards or Oyster cards?

TFL travelcards are very easy to understand – you simply choose the starting date, the duration, which zones you need (probably just zones 1-2 if you’re here on holiday), and then you pay just once and can make an unlimited number of journeys until the travel card expires.

The downside is that travelcards are only available for fixed periods – either one day, one week, one month or one year – so if you’re visiting for a different number of days then you’re better off buying an Oyster card .

Train travelcards are also limited to the zones you buy it for, so if you decide to make an extra journey out of the blue then you’ll have to buy a completely different ticket, whereas the pay-as-you-go credit on an Oyster card can be used in all zones.

About the author: Craig Cross is the owner of city-guide.london and has spent the last 20 years reviewing its landmarks, attractions and hotels

Your comments and questions

CC Hi, I want to know if I buy the one day card does it means it lasts 24 hrs? Or just till midnight of the day I purchase it?

Staff Hi CC. It actually lasts until 4.30 AM the next morning. So if it's dated for the 1st, it will last until 4.30 AM on the 2nd.

Leanne Hi there, I am travelling to London with 3 children aged 8, 10 & 11 and will need a travelcard that will cover us all. We have a few things planned but im not sure of which travelcards I need and for which zones? We will need to travel from Paddington station to Waterloo, and will be visiting the Cambridge Theatre and also Knightsbridge. Is it possible to buy a 3 day ticket that will cover those areas? Ive not been to London before so would like to plan as much as I can in advance. Thank you

Staff Hi Leanne. It's not possible to buy a 3-day card unfortunately - they only come as 1-day or weekly cards (or monthly). And the only travelcard that covers multiple people is the Group Day Travelcard, but that's for a minimum of ten people. The good news is that your 8 and 10 year old will travel for free on the tube, so I recommend that you use your contactless bank card, and you get an Oyster card for your 11 year old. That's because contactless and oyster fares are cheaper. The most you will pay each day is the 'daily cap' for zone 1, which is less than the cost of a 1-day travelcard (all of the places you mentioned are inside zone 1). Unfortunately you will also have to pay a £5 deposit the first time you buy a new Oyster card - but you can claim that back at the self-service ticket machine at the end if you want.

Leanne Thank you very much, that's very helpful

Csaba Is it possible to buy a new Oystercard and put a 7-day Travelcard on it at the newsagents generally? Do I have to have a minimum pay-as-you-go balance on it if using a Travelcard loaded onto my Oystercard?

Staff Hi Csaba. You can just have the travelcard on your Oyster card if you want. There's no need to have any pay-as-you-go credit on there as well, but you can do that as well if you want. You should be able to do it at any newsagent displaying the Oyster symbol in their window - not all of them have it.

Lafont If I have a travelcard on my Oyster card for zones 1 and 2, and I want to visit Hampton Court, how to proceed.

Staff Hi Lafont. Hampton Court is in zone 6, so you just need to add some pay-as-you-credit onto the same card to cover zones 2-6. You can see that fare here - city-guide.london/​transport/​adult-train-fares.php . When you tap it down on the gate the computer will recognise that the travelcard already covers zones 1&2 and just use the credit for the extra bit.

Pamela Laurie I need only a paper 1 day Oyster ticket, is it over 24 hours from when you buy it? ie. 12am one day till 12 am next day ?

Staff Hi Pamela. You buy it for a particular date. It will then last for the whole of that date, and up to 4.30 AM the next morning.

Ch What time can you use your travelcard from on a Sunday?

Staff Hi Ch. If it's a 1-day card then it's all day Sunday, right up to 4.30 AM Monday morning. If it was a midweek one then it would be different, because there are two cards available midweek: anytime and off-peak. The off-peak ones wouldn't start until 9.30 AM

Awi If I buy a zone 1-6 travelcard from Vauxhall rail station will that entitle me to the National Rail 2for1 promotion? Thanks

Staff Hi Awi. You have to be careful because you need a National Rail paper ticket for the 2for1 offer. Don't buy it from the underground station because then it will be a TFL ticket. That won't be valid. Buy it upstairs from the National Rail windows, and make sure they give you a paper ticket rather than putting it on an Oyster card, because that won't be valid either.

Diane Can you use a one day travelcard on any of the London tour buses?

Staff Hi Diane. No, sightseeing tour buses have got nothing to do with normal buses, so you'll have to buy a ticket from them.

Cathy If I buy a weekly travelcard from a train station, will the start day to use to card be the day I buy it? Or can I tell the counter staff which day I would like to start to use the travelcard? For example, I want to buy the paper travelcard at London Paddington Station on July 1st and I would like to start using it on July 6th. Is it possible? Thanks for your help.

Staff Hi Cathy. Sure. You can tell them which date you want it to start. It doesn't have to be the same day that you buy it. Paper tickets will then have the start date printed on the front.

Elle Hi, With weekly travelcards, do I need to get an identity card to go with it? Thanks

Staff Hi Elle. Not if you're an adult, no. You only need to provide a passport photo for monthly and annual travelcards, but not weekly ones. And a child would need a photocard

Ray Does the one day travelcard include journeys to Heathrow? Thank you Ray.

Staff Hi Ray. You have to choose the zones when you buy it. If you choose the one that covers zones 1-6 (or 1-9) then it will.

Cozzieanne Hi there, I'm soon going to be travelling four times a week from Ealing Broadway to Leytonstone station on the Central Line. If I buy an annual Zones 2-9 travelcard, does that mean that I can get on and off at literally any stop, on any line, at any time, as long as I'm within those zones? And does it include buses? Thank you! Cozzieanne

Staff Hi Cozzieanna. A zone 2-9 travelcard won't get you from Ealing Broadway to Leytonstone on the central line, because that journey goes straight through zone 1, so you'll need a zone 1-9 instead (actually, you only really need a 1-3 for that journey, unless you've got some other plans out to zone 9 that you haven't mentioned). A zone 1-9 travelcard will let you get on and off at any stop within zones 1-9, at any time, as many times as you like. And you can use it on the bus as well.

Graham Can a London Travelcard be used on both the Underground and on Network Rail trains? I'm planning to travel from Baker Street to Monument on the Circle Line, then from London Bridge to Waterloo East on normal Network Rail. Is the Travelcard valid for both journeys?

Staff Hi Graham, It works on both the underground and National Rail trains within the zones you buy it for. So assuming your travelcard covers zone 1 (which all those journeys are in), then it will be fine

Harmeen I just want to know that if I opt for a weekly travelcard for Zone 1 and 2, how many trips am I allowed in a week?

Staff Hi Harmeen. As many as you like. There's no limit with travelcards

Lailiyah McInnes Can I buy weekly travel card to London zone 1-2 and5? And how much the cost weekly and monthly .I just from Bromley south to Victoria to Fulham

Staff Hi Lailiyah. You can buy one for zones 1to5 (price is in the table above), but not zones 1,2+5. They don't sell one for just zone 5 on its own either. If you really wanted to then you could put a zone 1-2 travelcard on your oyster card, and then top it up with some pay-as-you-go credit as well. Then every time you tap it down on the gate the computer will recognise that you have a travelcard for zones 1-2, and only take the fare for zones 2-5 from the pay-as-you-go credit

Heather Is there a student discount on Oyster cards.

Staff Hi Heather. There is a discount, but you have to apply for an 18+ Student Oyster photocard to get them. All the details are here - tfl.gov.uk/​fares/​free-and-discounted-travel/18-plus-student-oyster-photocard

amar Can I use oyster card on traine

Staff Hi Amar. You can, yes. But it depends what train you’re talking about. It has to be within the Oyster zones. If you're talking about putting a travelcard onto an oyster card, then the train will have to be in the zones you buy the travelcard for

Jerry I need Travelcard from zone 2 to 8. How can I get one?

Staff Hi Jerry. It sounds a bit bonkers, but they don't sell travelcards for zones 2-8. You can get one for zones 1-8, or zones 2-9 instead which is a bit cheaper

Jerry I don`t understand why I have to pay more for something what we don`t need.

Staff Maybe you could try using a contactless card instead, because there's a cap for zones 2-8 on that. But if you want the weekly cap then it only works from Mon-Sun (not Tue-Mon, or any other combination of 7 days) - city-guide.london/​transport/​contactless-cards.php

Bob Scrivener Where do you find a zone map?

Staff Hi Bob. Here's one - content.tfl.gov.uk/standard-tube-map.pdf

Nigel Hi, I plan to come to London in the Autumn. It looks as if I’ll need to travel in zones 1-3 between my University and accommodation. Can you advise what the weekly cost is for a travel card

Staff Hi Nigel. All the prices are shown in the table above - at the moment it's £43:50 for zones 1-3

Karen Wilce Are there any concessions

Staff Hi Karen. If you mean senior concessions then you can get something called a Freedom Pass or a 60+ Oyster card, but you need to live in a London borough to qualify. If you live outside London then you can get a Senior Railcard. There are more details here - city-guide.london/​transport/​senior-train-fares.php

Theresa I have a monthly travel card zones 1 to 4, but i need to get to zone 6, what do i need to do.

Staff Hi Theresa. Assuming that it’s on an Oyster card, all you have to do is go up to a ticket machine and load some pay-as-you-go credit on to it. When you tap down on the gate the computer will recognise that the travelcard already covers zones 1-4 and just charge for the extra zones. You can see the price on our Oyster card page - city-guide.london/​transport/​oyster-cards.php

Anita Ganea My daughter is a 2nd year university student living in London, travelling to university and also to her place of work. She has now got a student oyster card and also has a 1/3 16-25 railcard. Does she have to link these to get the full benefits of the oyster card. I said that her travel will be a 1/3 cheaper if she gets the oyster card but obviously if she uses it as a pay as you go it is still the same, why is this?

Staff Hi Anita. She needs to get the railcard loaded onto her Oyster card, then she can use the Oyster card like normal and it will charge the discounted fares. She needs to take both cards to a London Underground station and then ask a member of TFL staff to load it on. You can usually find one standing behind the ticket barriers. Bear in mind that she doesn't get a discount on all Oyster fares, just off-peak ones, and zone 1-9 travelcards (if bought together with another National Rail ticket) - full details here 16-25railcard.co.uk/​using-your-railcard/​travel-times-tickets/

Steven Gatting Hi folks,,, returning uk resident arriving with Family from US for 7 day visit covering all areas on tube. Kis are 10. 14 and 16 . Shall I just get 7 day travel cards.Will be making plenty travel around the tube on all days. Thanks Steve Gatting

Staff Hi Steven, if you’re staying seven days then a weekly travelcard usually works out cheapest if you’re making at least two or more journeys on each of the seven days, or three or more journeys on six days, but it depends what zones you buy (most people only need zones 1-2). Your 10 year old will travel for free, but bear in mind your 14 and 16 year olds will have to pay for adult passes because it won’t be worth paying out extra for photocards to qualify for the kid prices.

Michael Just to make sure it will work: I want to buy a weekly 1-2 zones paper travel card at Paddington railway station. All I need is to bring £37 and paper-sized photo, right? No need to buy Oyster card or something like that?

Staff Hi Michael. You can only get a paper travelcard if it’s a 1-day travelcard. Weekly ones will go onto an Oyster card. If you don’t have an Oyster card you’ll have to go to an Oyster Ticket stop shop (newsagent) in the National Rail part of Paddington (and pay £5 deposit for a new card on top). The underground bit only has self-service machines. If you do have an Oyster card then you can load it on at a self-service machine. You don’t need a photo

Selina Rahman Hi, If I want to travel from Woodford to Bermondsey by train and then bus from Bermondsey to Bricklayer's Arms by bus, can I buy a weekly oyster card from zone 2-4? If not, please suggest how I can make this journey with the most economical option? Thanks,

Staff Hi Selina. Thats okay for Woodfood to Bermondsey (assuming you don't choose a route that passes through zone 1). theres more than one bricklayers arm’s in london so we don't know which one you're talking about, but it should be alright because buses don’t have zones. all travelcards are valid for bus travel in zones 1-6, regardless of which zones they cover

Polya Genova Why when I transfer via Wimbledon from Streatham to Fulham Broadway I am overcharged for zone 1.??? I notice 3 times on my way going but mot charge in my way back. The pink rider was no clear sound.

Staff Hi Polya. You're only supposed to tap down on the pink readers if your journey would normally take you across London through zone 1, and you're changing trains to bypass zone 1. But the journey you're doing wouldn't normally go through zone 1 anyway, so I would stop tapping down on the pink reader and see if that helps - just tap down at the beginning and end of your journey instead

Lorraine I am travelling to london from Leigh on sea going to Wood Green station / Shepherd’s Bush there are 6 of us all together 2 adults 4 chikdren under 11 years we have bought the Kidszania tickets What would be the cheapest fares to travel on the tube

Staff Hi Lorraine. your national rail tickets would be separate, but if all four kids are under 11 then they travel for free on the tube, and the adults should just use their contactless cards to pay (oyster is the same price as contactless, but you have to pay a £7 deposit to get hold of the cards)

MR JOHN ROZNOWSKI Is there any discount for ENCTS pass holders who live outside London?

Staff Hi John. Not if you want to buy a travelcard, but you should be able to use it to travel for free on TFL buses (with time restrictions) if it has the red rose symbol on it. Theres some more information here - city-guide.london/​transport/​senior-bus-fares.php

Engrid Hello, Do children travel for free with a parent who purchases a travel card?

Staff Hi Engrid. Only if they’re under 11. They travel for free with a fare paying adult - city-guide.london/​transport/​child-train-fares.php

Pauline My partner and myself are travelling on Avanti train from Lancaster for the day.Can we buy I day travel cards when we buy our train tickets in Lancaster. Thankyou

Staff Hi Pauline, we cant really help with what’s for sale in Lancaster, but we doubt that the train company will sell them. But you’d be better off just using your contactless card to pay anyway (assuming that you both have one), because the ‘daily cap’ for contactless is half the price of a 1-day travelcard - city-guide.london/​transport/​adult-train-fares.php

John Evans RAIL CARDS OR SENIOR BUS PASS Are they valid with one day travel card off peak

Staff Hi John. A senior bus pass with the red rose symbol lets you travel for free on TFL buses, with time restrictions, but you cant use them to buy a travelcard, A Senior Railcard will give you a discount on “Anytime Day Travelcard Zones 1-9 when bought as part of ticket to London from outside London (subject to minimum fare)” - city-guide.london/​transport/​senior-train-fares.php

James allison Is their a pensioner discount

Staff Hi James. Not for travelcards, no, unless you have a senior railcard as mentioned in the comment above. But you can travel for free on the buses and trains if you have a freedom pass or 60+ oyster card (with time restrictions). More info here - city-guide.london/​transport/​senior-train-fares.php

Paul Hoelzley Good afternoon, We are Canadian seniors (82 & 76) and will be in London for 5 days early January 2023. Could you kindly help us and advise us on what is the cheapest card to use during our stay. There seem to be so many different choices and fares and this is very confusing to us. Thank you for taking the time to answer our question (s). Regards, Paul H.

Staff Hi Paul. A Visitor Oyster card will be the cheapest, and you can buy it online before you go and have it delivered to you in Canada - more information about that here: city-guide.london/​transport/​visitor-oyster-cards.php . You’ll have to choose how much credit you want on it, so just work out which fare zones you’ll be travelling through each day (most tourists just need zone 1), and look at the ‘daily cap’ for that zone in the fares chart. That will be the maximum you will be charged that day. Add up all the daily caps for the five days, and thats how much credit you’ll need. Alternatively… you can just buy a weekly travelcard when you arrive in London. You’ll lose a little bit of money, but its a lot less complicated because you can make unlimited journeys for the whole week

Mark Hi, we will be travelling to London from Melbourne in September. Four adults For five full days. We are flying into Gatewick. What is the best way to get to accommodation near Hyde park and where should we get recommended pass?

Staff Hi Mark. I would buy tickets for the Gatwick Express into Victoria on their website, and then get Visitor Oyster Cards for everyone and have them delivered to Australia before I travel. Oyster cards have the cheapest fares, and you can use them on the tube to wherever it is you're staying around Hyde Park. Info about where to get Visitor Oyster cards here - city-guide.london/​transport/​visitor-oyster-cards.php

Ali Need a travel pass ticket in London for tube and buss

Staff Hi Ali. We've explained how you can get one on this page

Jordi Hello, I'm going to travel to London for a 7 days in July. 2 adults and 1 of 14 years. We move for zones 1-3. Wich is the best option? and Where can I buy better?

Staff Hi Jordi. It depends how many journeys you're making. If you make two or more journeys on each of the seven days, or three or more journeys on six of the days, then a weekly travelcard should be cheaper. Otherwise the adults should use their contactless cards if they're from the UK, or Oyster cards if they're from abroad (which have the same fares as contactless, but you have to pay a £5 deposit on top). The 14-year old should get an Oyster card and have the 'Young Visitor Discount' applied to it, as explained on this page - city-guide.london/​transport/​child-train-fares.php

Keith Morgan How much will a 1-6 zone one day travelcard for 2 adults and two children with a family railcard

Staff Hi Keith. You dont get a discount if you buy the travelcard on its own. You need to be coming into London on another train. According to their terms: “With your Railcard you can get 1/3 off Anytime Day Travelcard when bought as part of your journey to London from outside London Zones 1-9 (subject to a minimum fare which is currently £20,30)” - familyandfriends-railcard.co.uk/​help/​faqs/

DEREK SPELLER Good afternoon.......we are travelling into Heathrow from Canada in August and staying in Paddington. The London Transport Travelcard will allow us onto the Tube at Heathrow but NOT the Heathrow to Paddington Airport Train.....am I correct?

Staff Hi Derek. That's correct, yes. You can use an Oyster card on the Heathrow Express, but not a travelcard. If you want to use a travelcard on the tube from heathrow to paddington then you'll have to get one covering zones 1-6

Muraleedharan vp Which are the places covered by differrnt zones?

Staff Zone 1-2 covers the central touristy part of London, which is good enough for 99% of tourists. but maybe you'll want zone 3 for kew, and zone 6 for heathrow

Reda Weekly travel card zone 2 to zone 4. Travelling from zone 4 to zone 4 without crossing zone 1 , why I got charged £2.50 at the end of the day.

Staff Hi Reda. Is the travelcard loaded onto an Oyster card? £2.50 is a zone 1 fare, so the only thing I can think of is that you didn’t tap out at the end.

B Walker Can I purchase a weekly anytime travel card as ticket? Not plastic oyster

Staff Hi B Walker. Only if you buy it online from the TFL shop - visitorshop.tfl.gov.uk/​en/​london-travelcard . If you buy it anywhere in London then it will be loaded onto an Oyster card.

Veronica We are a family of five traveling into London Kings Cross on 7th Oct children are aged 15,15,14, We are staying for 9 nights at Twickenham and will be travelling in/out London and going to attractions. What would be the best travel option?

Staff Hi Veronica. We always recommend that adults use their contactless bank card. (oyster cards have the same fares, but you have to pay a deposit on top.) and then get oyster cards for the kids. but get the ‘young visitor discount’ applied to the oyster cards when you arrive in London, which is explained here - city-guide.london/​transport/​child-train-fares.php

Veronica Which zone is Twickenham in. Should I order the child oyster card before we arrive and do they require a photo

Staff Its in zone 5. you can order it in advance if you want to, they don’t require a photo. its all explained on our oyster card page - city-guide.london/​transport/​oyster-cards.php

PEDRO Do foreign children between 11 and 15 have a discount with the one-day travelcard? I think no...

Staff Hi Pedro. They can do, but only if you get them an Oyster Zip photocard as well. But you have to pay extra for those, which will wipe out any savings you make. So we dont recommend getting one if its just a one-off visit - city-guide.london/​transport/​child-train-fares.php

Alex If I buy a travelcard at Heathrow and need to travel to Hammersmith but only on the next day do I need to make another journey (in zones 1 and 2), can I buy a 7 day travelcard at the same time as buying some PAYG but somehow POST-DATE the 7 day travelcard so it is only active from the NEXT day?

Staff Hi Alex. You can do. You always have to choose the start date when you buy a travelcard so i would do that first, then load some credit on after. Another way is to just buy a zone 1-2 travelcard at heathrow, from the first day, and load some extra credit on to cover the zones 2-6 bit

Alex Hello again. Travelling from Buckhurst Hill to Hampton Wick with a Zone 1-2 Travelcard and PAYG. I see this necessitates a National Rail Journey from Zone 1 to 6. Will it cost a Zone 1 to 6 fare from PAYG despite the travelcard because it's National Rail and not Overground/Underground? Does one have to check in/check out at a station on the border of zones 2-3? Pink card reader or something?

Staff As long as the National Rail station is within the oyster zones (which your stations are) then you can pay with a travelcard and oyster - theres no difference. you dont have to tap down on a pink reader. you only use those if you're making a detour to avoid zone 1, on a journey that would normally go through zone 1. you just have to tap down at the beginning and end of your journey like normal

ELHAMUDDIN ZAHID Hello I am student and have class two days a week and live in zone 5 which option will be cheap for me. Many thanks

Staff Hi Elhamuddin. The easiest and cheapest thing to do is to just use your contactless card - city-guide.london/​transport/​contactless-cards.php

Alex Hi. I just phoned up TFL and got my PAYG balance refunded (£8:70) from my oyster into bank account. I'm no longer on London and couldn't do it at machine in London as I still had a valid travelcard on my last day! Now the oyster card has been removed from the app! Is the card still valid should I return to London in the future? Or did refunding the PAYG balance cancel the card? I paid £7 for the card. Perhaps they canceled the card and refunded the £7 as well as the £8:70?

Staff Hi Alex. The card gets voided at the same time as the refund, so you wont be able to use it anymore. The deposit would have been converted into PAYG credit after 12 months, but if you've had it less than that then you don't get it back.

JOHN Hello everyone, I have a crucial to me question that puzzles me when I try to buy online a London weekly anytime travelcard for my planned trip to London next month, i.e. November 2022, landing at Heathrow airport. As far as I understand, a 7-Days (weekly) London anytime travelcard does not have a peak, or, off-peak option (As 1-day travelcards do). They are valid throughout the whole day (And, if I am not mistaken valid until 04:30 am of the next day after their expiry). I am trying to buy the card from abroad (within EU) prior my arrival & ordering it to be mailed to my home country. I choose adult, Ticket Duration = 7 Day (only option), Ticket Zone = Zones 1-6, Then it requires me to choose (Under: “Admission)” an option, BUT, the only option available in the: “Peak”. Then date of first use which I provide and then the total price is £70.30. Question is, in the field entitled: “Admission” the only option being: “Peak”, What do they mean by the word: Peak ? If I choose Peak (the only option available) will I purchase a weekly anytime travelcard that I will be able to use throughout the whole day, OR, will I be able to ONLY use it during Peak hours (i.e. prior 09:30 am) which does NOT make any sense as a 7-Days (weekly) anytime travelcard (As the name clearly states) is valid throughout the whole day ? I am at a loss. What do they mean by the option: Peak ? Can somebody please help me ? Many thanks in advance for your time & effort. Looking forward to your reply/assistance. Many thanks & Best Regards

Staff Hi John. The way they've worded it does look a bit confusing (they should have called it 'anytime') but it will definitely be valid for an entire week, both off-peak and peak hours. That's the only version you can buy for a weekly travelcard.

JOHN Many thanks for your reply ref London weekly anytime travelcard. Much appreciated. If I land to Heathrow during weekend will I be able to buy a London weekly anytime travelcard from Heathrow Visitor Center, OR, from a Heathrow ticket machine ? In this case do I need an oyster card ? Can I use the very same card to travel (By tube and/or overground rail) from, AND, to Heathrow airport (E.g. Heathrow to Waterloo)? In the latter case, are there any specific tube/overground trains I cannot use, i.e. express ? Many thanks in advance for your time & effort. Looking forward to your reply/assistance. Many thanks & Best Regards

Staff You won't be able to buy a paper travelcard at Heathrow, but you will be able to get one loaded onto an Oyster card. Assuming that you haven't got an Oyster card already, that will add another £7 deposit on top. But if you do get an Oyster card then you may as well forget the travelcard and load some credit onto it instead, and pay normal Oyster fares, which might work out cheaper depending on how many days you're staying. Oyster credit can be used on buses and trains in all the zones, including Heathrow. But if you catch the Heathrow Express then the credit will be used to pay the normal Heathrow Express fare instead (rather than a cheaper Oyster fare - you'd have to catch the tube for that). More info about all that here - city-guide.london/​transport/​oyster-cards.php - If you want a paper travelcard then your only option is to get it from the TFL site and have it posted to you.

Matt Greer Are weekly travelcards discontinuing in January 2023? If so, what is replacing it for tourist weekly travel?

Staff Hi Matt. There was talk about scrapping them last year as well, but nothing has happened so far. If they do disappear then people will have to use the weekly cap on Oyster and contactless instead (which is the same price as a weekly travelcard). So tourists will have to buy an Oyster card.

Eva Ticket type Hi, I found Super Off-Peak Day Travelcardincludes London Travelcard with Travel conditions Same day return off-peak travel including unlimited bus, tube, tram and DLR journeys around London. I would like to use with the 2 for 1 promotion wisiting London Eye. I would like to be sure that this train ticket is accepted by them. thank you

Staff Hi Eva. It has to be from a National Rail station rather than an underground station (so it has to be printed on orange paper), and you have to book the London Eye in advance rather than turn up on the day. You can check the ticket here - daysoutguide.co.uk/​travel-by-train/​is-my-ticket-valid-for-2for1-and-other-offers

Muhammad Athar Masood I am coming to London on March 29 and shall stay here upto April 11. During my stay, I intend to travel in almost all zones of the city using bus, tube, tram or train whichever convenient. Please guide me if should buy a Travle Card or an Oyester Card.

Staff Hi Muhammad. Price-wise you're probably going to be better off with an Oyster card rather than a travelcard, but there are advantages and disadvantages to each. Have a read of this page which explains them all - city-guide.london/​transport/​oyster-contactless-travelcard-comparison.php

Sandr Hi, Me and my husband are coming to London with our kids age 8,15,16.We will be there one week.Is the seven days travelcard best options for us?

Staff Hi Sandr. Travelcards usually work out cheaper if you make 2 or more journeys on each of the 7 days, or three or more on 6 of the days. Otherwise you’ll be better off with Oyster cards (unless you have UK bank cards, then you can just use contactless instead)

Sandra Thank you very much for your answer.We surely will be using it more than 2 times a day.And my daughter age 8 doesn't have to have a travelcard?My daughter age 15 has a child travelcard?Does it have to be with a photo? Thanks for your help.

Staff You can only get a child travelcard if you have a child photocard, but you have to pay extra money for those which means you’d wipe out all the savings. So its not worth it. Your 8 year old travels for free. Its all explained on our child fares page - city-guide.london/​transport/​child-train-fares.php

Kathe Conway Hello, riding here i am curious, i will be in london for seven days thinking it is best to get a travel card, can you buy this at Heathrow ? Also if for one day I am traveling to zone four does it make more sense just to buy a single trip that day? sorry so confusing :)

Staff Hi Kathe. You can get it loaded on to an oyster card, but youll need the oyster card first. You can have a paper one posted to you if you order it online (even abroad - its all described in the ‘Where can you buy a travelcard?’ section above). If you want to use it from heathrow into central london that would be zones 1-6, which would also cover zone 4. You wouldnt be travelling zones 1-6 all week though, so it would be a bit of a waste of money. I would probably recommend getting an oyster card instead, which you can get from heathrow - city-guide.london/​transport/​oyster-cards.php

Giuluano Hi there, how much cost me a travel card zone 1to 6 on Sunday?

Staff Hi Giuluano. Sunday is off-peak so get the off-peak one - 15,20

Richard Can I buy the 1 day Travelcard at any national trainstation (planning for Knockholt)? As this is a requirement for 2for1

Staff Hi. Richard. You can, yes (assuming you mean one of the stations in London). But you have to get it from the windows/machines upstairs, in the National Rail part of the station. If you go downstairs to the London Underground part then it will be printed on different paper, which is no good for the offer.

Richard Thanks. Indeed we drive from SevenOaks to Knockholt national railstation, with our Diesel from the Netherlands, which I want to leave outside LEZ. Thus parking in Knockholt (which is in Zone 6) and then use for the Saturday and Sunday the 2 day paper travelcard. This should allow our group of 6 to have the cheapest means of transportation into London, benefitting from 2FOR1, as long as we purchase the cards at Knockholt national Railwaystation (Can we purchase them at this station!? ). Can you confirm this is the best strategy? Thx

Staff Knockholt is in zone 6, so they should sell them. Its not the cheapest way of travelling (using contactless/oyster would be cheaper) but you’d make all the money back and more from doing the 2-for-1 offer, so it sounds like a good plan. You can buy the off-peak ones if youre travelling at the weekend. And its definitely a lot cheaper than driving into london. If youre talking about this saturday and sunday remember the coronation is on, so everywhere will likely be packed

JOSE CARVALHO If I have a travelcard card for zones 1 and 2, and I want to go Canning Town (zone 2/3) and return, how to proceed.

Staff Hi Jose. if you coming from the direction of zone 1 or 2, and get off at Canning Town, then you're fine, your travelcard will cover the whole journey. If you’re going into zone 3 and your travelcard is on an oyster card, then you can just load on some extra pay-as-you-go credit to cover the fare for zone 2-3 (which can be seen here - city-guide.london/​transport/​adult-train-fares.php )

Lynn I am arriving in London from overseas and need just one train ticket from Paddington Station to Kings Cross Station. What is the best way to pay for this trip please

Staff Hi lynn. If it's just a one-off then I would buy a single ticket from the self-service machine in the station

Derek Scriven Is there still a concession on 1 day travelcards with a senior railcard?

Staff H Derek. There is, but only this specific one - "Anytime Day Travelcard Zones 1-9 when bought as part of ticket to London from outside London" - senior-railcard.co.uk/​using-your-railcard/​travel-times-tickets/

Richard I want to find out about the cheapest weekly cost for travel card from Brockley station to Reading.

Lala If I want to travel to London zones 1-6 and I need the weekly travel cards, how much is it and how do I buy it? I also have a 16-25 Railcard, can it be applied when buying?

Staff Hi Lala. the prices for zone 1-6 are all shown in the table at the top. The different ways to buy it are described under ‘Where can you buy travelcards’. The railcard wont get you a discount on a weekly travelcard. The only travelcard you can get a discount on is a “one day travelcard, zones 1-9, when bought together with a National Rail ticket to London (when coming from outside London)”

ALAN Can I use a Rail Travel Voucher issued by Transport for Wales for a cancelled journey to buy a TFL Travelcard?

Staff Hi Alan. I wouldn't imagine so, but it's probably best to ask Transport for Wales - tfw.wales/​help-and-contact/​rail/contact-us

Edward Gould Do I need a photo for an annual season travel card

Staff Hi Edward. You’ll need to get an oyster card and register it on the TFL website. You’ll then be able to buy the annual travelcard through that website and load it straight onto your card

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ncesc-geographic-faq

Which zone is Covent Garden?

geographic-faq

Covent Garden is located in Travelcard Zone 1.

Is Covent Garden in Zone 1 or 2?

Covent Garden is in Travelcard Zone 1.

What areas are Zone 1 in London?

Zone 1 in London covers the West End, the Holborn district, Kensington, Paddington, the City of London, Old Street, Angel, Pimlico, Tower Gateway, Aldgate East, Euston, Vauxhall, Elephant & Castle, Borough, London Bridge, Earl’s Court, Marylebone, Edgware Road, Lambeth North, and Waterloo.

Is Notting Hill in Zone 1?

Notting Hill is located in Zone 1+2.

What stations are in Zone 2?

In Zone 2, you can find the following stations: Abbey Road, All Saints, Archway, Arsenal, Barons Court, Battersea Park, Belsize Park, Bermondsey, and more.

What’s Wrong With Covent Garden?

There is no specific information available regarding any issues with Covent Garden.

What are zones 1 to 6 in London?

In London, the transport system is divided into six fare zones. Zone 1 covers the central area, and the other zones form concentric rings around it.

What is in zone 1 and 2 in London?

Zone 1 in London is the central area where most of the tourist attractions and popular hotel districts are located. Zone 2 includes trendy neighborhoods like Camden and Notting Hill.

What zone is Soho in?

Soho is located in Zone 1 in London.

What zone is Oxford Street?

Oxford Street is in Travelcard Zone 1.

What zone is Wimbledon in?

Wimbledon is in Travelcard Zone 3.

What zone is Hyde Park?

Hyde Park is in Travelcard Zone 1.

What is Zone 3 in London?

Zone 3 is one of the inner zones in London’s fare system. It is used for calculating the price of tickets for travel on the London Underground, London Overground, Docklands Light Railway, and National Rail services.

What areas are Zone 2 London?

Popular locations in Zone 2 of London include Brent, Camden, Chelsea, Deptford, Earl’s Court, Fulham, Greenwich, Hackney, Kensington, Lambeth, Lewisham, Newham, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Wandsworth, and Westminster.

Is Covent Garden in Zone 1 or 6?

Covent Garden is in Zone 1 in London.

What areas are Zone 1?

Zone 1 in London includes Putney, Marylebone, Brixton, Dulwich, Bermondsey, Highbury and Islington, Clapham, and more.

What zone is Piccadilly?

Piccadilly is located in Zone 1 in London.

Is Earls Court zone 1?

Earl’s Court is in both Travelcard Zone 1 and Zone 2.

What zone is Camden?

Camden is in Travelcard Zone 2.

Is Paddington zone 1 or 2?

Paddington is in Travelcard Zone 1.

Which zone is Buckingham Palace?

Buckingham Palace is located in Zone 1.

What zone is Heathrow in?

Heathrow Terminal 5 Underground station is in Travelcard Zone 6.

Is Hampstead Zone 2 or 3?

Hampstead is in both Zone 2 and Zone 3.

What zone is Kensington?

Kensington is located in Zone 1 in London.

What is the best zone in London?

Some of the best neighborhoods to live in London include Putney, Marylebone, Brixton, Dulwich, Bermondsey, Highbury and Islington, Clapham, and more.

Is Zone 2 London expensive?

Housing prices in Zone 2 of London are slightly lower compared to Zone 1. The average price for a house in Zone 2 is around £723,000, while monthly rents for a two-bedroom property average around £2,140.

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  1. Best Travel Credit Cards of January 2024

    General-purpose travel credit cards Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card American Express® Gold Card Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card — give you rewards that can be used like cash to pay...

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    Best for flexible rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card. Best for varied bonus categories: Citi Premier Card. Best hotel card: Hilton Honors American Express Aspire. Best for cash back ...

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    Whether you're an occasional traveler looking to save on your next vacation or a frequent traveler looking for premium travel perks, there's a travel rewards card for you. We'll break down our top picks for the best travel rewards credit cards. Summary Best travel credit cards of January 2024

  7. The 6 Best Travel Cards for the US in 2024

    Prepaid travel card option 1: Bluebird American Express prepaid debit card. You can order a Bluebird prepaid debit card for free online. You'll then be able to top up in cash or from a bank account. You can also add checks or have funds deposited by others - fees apply for some top up methods. While this card doesn't allow you to hold ...

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  10. Caps and Travelcard prices

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  11. Best Credit Cards For Travel Insurance in January 2024

    Enjoy 6.5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, our premier rewards program that lets you redeem rewards for cash back, travel, gift cards and more; 4.5% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service, and 3% on all other purchases (on up to $20,000 spent in ...

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  13. Travelcards

    The Travelcard is a transport pass for London that gives you unlimited travel in London within certain zones. The prices vary according to the number of zones you need to travel through. Central London is in zone 1. Travelcards are valid for 1 day, 7 days, 1 month or 1 year.

  14. Close Icon

    London is big. We get it. So working out how to get from A to B can be slightly intimidating. To help you with your travel planning and budgeting, we've laid out the best ticket options (and how much they cost*) for your time in London. Pay daily or buy a weekly London Travel card - it's up to you. Daily Travel Card Prices

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    A Travelcard gives you unlimited travel within London zones 1-4 or 1-6 on the Underground, Overground, TfL Rail, Docklands Light Railway, buses, trams, and most National Rail services in London*. You can also use your Travelcard to get discounted fares on the Emirates Air Line and a third off River Boat fares on selected services.

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    Choose from a Visitor Oyster card for pay as you go travel, a paper Day Travelcard to enjoy unlimited travel or a Group Day London Travelcard if you are travelling in group. All three tickets give you the freedom to explore London using the city's integrated public transport network. Buses cost just £1.75 for unlimited journeys within a hour ...

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    Travel to and from Heathrow Airport — use your Travelcard for tube travel from Heathrow Airport into central London (with a Zone 1-6 Travelcard) Receive an exclusive 33% discount on the Thames Clippers River Bus services. Get a same-day-dispatch when ordering any weekday before 9:00 am (UK time).

  20. London travelcard cost for each zone and fare caps for individual

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  24. Weekly and Monthly Travelcards for Zones 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6

    Zone 2-3,4,5 or 6 Travelcards 2024 Zone 3-4,5 or 6 Travelcards 2024 Zone 4-5 or 6 Travelcards 2024 Zone 5-6 Travelcards 2024 London transport zones Last checked: 5 March 2023 Weekly and monthly Travelcard prices excluding central London. Travelcard prices for zones 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6. The cost of the pass is cheaper excluding zone 1.

  25. London Travelcard Prices 2024

    If you buy a one day travelcard then you'll only have three options: zones 1-4, zones 1-6 or zones 1-9. If you buy a weekly, monthly or annual travelcard then you can choose a combination of different zones between 1-9. Important note: there are no trams in central London, only in zone 3 and beyond (in places like Beckenham, Croydon and Wimbledon).

  26. Family Travelcard

    Enjoy 1/3 off adult train tickets, plus 60% off kids' fares. The Family & Friends Railcard costs just £30 for one year and gets you 1/3 off Standard Anytime, Off-Peak, Super Off-Peak and Advance tickets for adults, as well as 60% off child fares. Perfect for families or groups who travel regularly with up to 4 children.

  27. Fares from 5 March 2023

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  28. Cost of Zone 1-6 Travelcard

    Officers are preparing an answer. Date: Friday 13 March 2015. I froze the price of the All Day Travelcard and increased the 1-6 Travelcard season ticket by just under 2.5 per cent. Only the price of the off-peak paper Travelcard has increased by 35 per cent. This increase was to pay for the new lower daily caps which will benefit some 200 000 ...

  29. Where is Zone 5 in London?

    Zones 1 to 6 are used to categorize London Underground, National Rail, London Overground, TfL Rail, and Docklands Light Railway stations. ... make sure to use an Oyster Card or contactless payment to get the cheapest fares. ... the city is divided into nine zones which are used to determine travel distances and fares. Zone 1 is the central zone ...

  30. Which zone is Covent Garden?

    What are zones 1 to 6 in London? In London, the transport system is divided into six fare zones. Zone 1 covers the central area, and the other zones form concentric rings around it. ... It is used for calculating the price of tickets for travel on the London Underground, London Overground, Docklands Light Railway, and National Rail services.