Top 10 Best Credit Cards for Travel in 2018

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Published on December 30, 2017 by Chris

The best credit cards for travelling in 2018. These cards are the best either for their generous signup bonus, rewards for spending on the card, or the ongoing benefits just for having the card. Some have a high annual fee, and some have none. I’ve got some plain cash back cards, and even a debit card at the end. I’ll conclude with the list of the other cards that I carry in my wallet that didn’t make the top 10.

Signup bonus. But maybe after you get the signup bonus the card should just go on the shelf
Rewards for Spend: Cash Back, Airline Miles, Amex Membership Rewards Points, Chase Ultimate Rewards
Ongoing Benefits for just having the card: Free checked bags, lounge access, free hotel nights. The cards can be on the shelf too
1- Chase Sapphire Preferred Card: Best all-around card to get started with (good signup bonus, good earning on spend, Flexible Points)

50,000 UR points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months. Another 5,000 bonus points for an authorized user
$0 annual fee the first year then $95 after.
Spend: 2X points travel & dining at restaurants & 1 point on all other purchases
No foreign transaction fees [This applies to almost all of these cards]
Points transfer to United, Hyatt, Southwest, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Singapore Airlines, Korean Air, Air France KLM, Marriott Rewards, IHG Rewards Club, and Ritz-Carlton

2 – Chase Sapphire Reserve has great earn, a great bonus, and decent benefits.
50,000 UR points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months.
Spend: 3X points travel & dining at restaurants & 1 point on all other purchases
$450 annual fee
Benefits: $300 annual travel credit, $100 global entry credit, Priority Pass with unlimited visits and no fee for guests.
I have this card in my wallet
3- Platinum Card By American Express: Get this card for the benefits [elite status and lounge access]
60,000 points MR points after $5000 spend within 3 months.
17 direct AMEX Membership Rewards airline transfer partners
3 Hotel transfer partners (Choice, Hilton, Starwood) but airlines are a better value

Spend: 5 points per dollar on airfare. 1 Point elsewhere.

$550 annual fee
$200 annual airline fee credit , $200 annual Uber credit, $100 Global Entry credit.
Lounge access is American Express’ awesome Centurion lounges {my favorite perk], Delta lounges when flying Delta same day, Airspace lounges and Priority Pass lounges.
elite status with Starwood Gold (which matches to Marriott), Hilton Gold, National Car Rental, and Uber
Amex Purchase Protection is amazing too
4- Citi Prestige:
No signup bonus currently
$450 Annual Fee
Spend: 3X Thank you Points Air Travel & Hotels, 2X Dining & Entertainment, 1X other
Complimentary 4th night stay at any hotel of your choice after a minimum 4-consecutive night booking through ThankYou.com
$250 Air Travel Credit, $100 Global Entry, Priority Pass
5- United Club Card:
50K signup Bonus in United Miles after $3K in spend in 3 months
Earn: 1.5 United Miles per dollar. 2X for United tickets.
$450 Annual Fee
Benefits: First and 2nd checked bag free, United Club Lounge Access ($550 value)
6- Chase Ink Business Preferred:
80K Signup Bonus with $5K spend in 3 months
Earn: 3X on Travel, shipping, internet, cable, phone, advertising on social media
Annual Fee: $95
7- Amex Everyday No Annual Fee — 1 Membership Reward per dollar, but 20% bonus if you use the card 20 times per month. Transfer to Aeroplan, Singapore, British Airways, Delta….

8- Fidelity Cash Back: Unlimited 2% cash back, No Annual Fee

9- Alliant Unlimited Cash Back: 3% Cash Back First Year, 2.5% after. $59 Annual Fee

10- Charles Schwab High Yield Checking Account Debit Card
No ATM fees.Receive unlimited ATM fee reimbursements.1
No minimum balance.No monthly service fees.3
I also have in my wallet or on my shelf:
Chase United Card – PQM Waiver
Chase Marriott Card (personal and biz) – Free nights and elie status
Chase Hyatt – Elite status and free night
Ink Bold – 5X on office supplies
Chase Freedom (5x)
Delta Amex – Boarding priority and free checked bag
Amex Blue Cash – MR Store
Amex Gold – Signup Bonus
Citi AA – AA Perks
JCB Card — discounts
Discover — promotions

 

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