6 Of The Best Credit Cards For Travel

By Ronald Kimmons. May 7th 2016

Due to costs related to fuel, hotel stays, plane tickets, restaurants and various other items, traveling can be an expensive prospect. For this reason, savvy travelers know to take advantage of whatever opportunities are available for saving money. Savings can come in many ways, but one way in which you can save on a full collection of items is by using your credit card when you make travel purchases. In fact, some financial advisers actually suggest that travelers should keep their debit cards at home as debit cards do not always provide the same protections as credit cards when it comes to things like theft or double charges. Also, it’s important to note that even if you don’t use your credit card while traveling, it can still deliver certain travel-related bonuses. However, some credit cards are clearly better for travelers than others. Here are some of the best credit cards for travel.

Marriott Rewards Visa Card

Marriott is one of the world’s most expansive and renowned hotel and hospitality chains. With locations in places ranging from Singapore and Bangkok to London and Mexico City, Marriott hotels are the favorite stops for many travelers, whether for business or for pleasure. To cater to such frequent travelers, the company has its own credit card rewards program offered through Chase Bank and Visa. This rewards program offers 1 percent cash back on most purchases and 3 percent cash back on payments made to stay at Marriott hotels throughout the world. Credit card holders can even earn free stays at Marriott hotels depending on how often they use their cards.

American Express Blue Sky Card

Like the Marriott Rewards Visa Card, the American Express Blue Sky Card is particularly beneficial for frequent travelers. Unlike the Marriott card, though, this card is not brand-specific. It accumulates cash rewards at a rate of 1 percent on all normal purchases and it allows card holders to put those points toward travel-related expenses like plane tickets, hotel stays etc. These rewards are not limited to a specific brand or provider. For an additional annual fee of $75, card holders can increase rewards to 2 percent.

American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card

Like the Blue Sky Card, the Cash Preferred Card does not have brand constraints when it comes to earning or using its rewards. On top of the 1 percent cash back that accumulates on most purchases, it also offers 3 percent cash back at gas stations and department stores and 6 percent cash back at supermarkets. The preferred version of this card comes with an annual fee of $75. The everyday version has no annual fee, but the cash back bonuses are lower – 1, 2, and 3 percent, respectively.

Chase British Airways Visa Signature Card

British Airways is the largest airline in the UK and one of the largest airlines in the world. By teaming up with Chase Bank and Visa, British Airways is helping to offer frequent international travelers several ways of saving through credit card transactions. First, there is no transaction fee for foreign purchases on this card. On other cards, this fee usually comes to about 3 percent. Second, if you use the card to spend at least $2,500 within the first 90 days, you earn 50,000 miles of service on British Airways flights. Third, you earn 2.5 miles per dollar spent on British Airways tickets and 1.25 miles per dollar spent on other purchases.

Capital One Venture Rewards Card

This card is another traveler-friendly card without brand loyalty. Like the British Airways card, it has no foreign transaction fees. It also gives bonuses to card holders in two basic ways. First, if you make $1,000 in purchases within the first three months, you receive 25,000 bonus miles – which you can redeem through the airline of your choice. Second, it offers 2 percent cash back bonuses. The Venture card comes with a $59 annual fee. The alternative VentureOne version has no annual fee, but the other aspects of the card are not as attractive.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

In addition to the cards that it offers in conjunction with other companies, Chase Bank offers travelers its Sapphire Preferred Card on its own. Like other travel-oriented cards, it has no foreign exchange fees. Also, in addition to a basic point accrual system similar to other cards, it offers double points on travel and dining. If you make your bookings through the Ultimate Rewards portal, you accrue triple points. This comes on top of whatever savings you can claim by using the portal which often amount to as much as 20 percent. On top of this, the card gives 40,000 bonus points to those who spend at least $3,000 within the first three months as well as a yearly bonus equaling 7 percent of the total points accrued during the previous year.

If you are in the market for a travel credit card, give these credit cards a good look before making a final decision.

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