Americans are missing out on $22 billion each year in travel rewards. If you travel a lot, you are missing out on free money and perks.
Rewards for the first year alone can be around $900 for cardholders. Of course, there are a variety of rewards cards available.
Look for the card that fits with your needs of flight, hotel, or perks. Keep reading for our selection of the best travel credit cards of 2018.
Chase Sapphire Preferred(R) Card
The Sapphire Rewards gives a large sign-up bonus. It is best for those who have large travel spending budgets. Spend $4,000 in the first three months of opening the account and receive 50,000 points.
Those points equal out to about $625 in travel when you redeem them. Earn 5,000 points when the first authorized user makes their first purchase.
Your first year with the card there is no annual fee. After the first year, there is an annual fee of $95. You need to have excellent credit to qualify for this card.
Cardholders will earn 2 points on all travel and dining expenditures. Everything else earns one point.
There are no blackout dates or foreign transaction fees. This makes it one of the best credit cards for international travel.
Points transfer at a rate of 1:1 to your airline or hotel loyalty programs. You will get 25% more value redeeming them through Chase Rewards though.
Marriott Rewards(R) Premier Plus Credit Card
Marriott Rewards is best for those who are looking for hotel rewards. It also offers a large bonus for signing up. In the first 3 months, spend $3,000 and earn 75,000 points.
This bonus equals to a free night at the hotel. Every year an anniversary reward of a free night is also earned.
Cardholders earn 6 points per dollar at any participating Marriott hotel. Any other purchases earn 2 points per dollar spent.
There is an annual fee of $95. There is no limit to earning, so the more you spend, the more free nights you earn.
Spend $35,000 in a year and be automatically upgraded to Gold Status. Users have Silver Elite status for each account anniversary year.
The Platinum Card(R) from American Express
American Express has a great option for those who want both benefits and bonus rewards. You need to have good to excellent credit to qualify.
There is an annual fee of $550. Gain 60,000 points when you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months.
Uber rewards are available totaling $200 in rides annually. Credit and Uber VIP status are also available.
Earn 5 times the points when American Express books the flights and hotels. Platinum members have access to the exclusive airport lounges.
This is one of the best vacation credit cards for perks while traveling. Recieve $550 of complimentary rewards when visiting fine hotels and restaurants.
American Express waives $200 each year in airline travel fees. This applies to things like checked luggage fees.
Gold Delta SkyMiles(R) Credit Card from American Express
For those travelers who want airline miles, the Gold Delta SkyMiles card is the best. Spend $1,000 in the first 3 months for 30,000 in travel miles.
A $50 statement credit is available when you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. Delta purchases earn 2 miles per dollar. All other purchases earn 1 mile per dollar.
The first bag checked on Delta flights is free when using the card. You will also have priority boarding.
Those with good to excellent will qualify. The first year there is no annual fee. There is an annual fee of $95 for each year after.
Bank of America(R) Travel Rewards Credit Card
The Bank of America Travel Rewards is perfect for those with a low travel budget. The card comes with a sign-up bonus and no annual fees.
Cardholders earn 1.5 points for every dollar they spend. There are no limits on earning. There is no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees. Your earned points will never expire.
If your purchases total at least $1,000 in the first 90 days you earn 20,000 bonus points. This equals a $200 statement credit towards your travel purchases.
Cardholders are not required to use a specific service to book travel. Points get redeemed as statement credits towards travel expenses.
Enjoy an APR of 0% for the first year of the card. After the first year, APR is between 16.74% and 24.74%.
Get a Bank of America checking or savings account to earn an extra 10%. Preferred Rewards clients earn an extra 25-75%.
Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card
Travelers that like to stay at Hilton can earn 100,000 points if they spend $2,000 in the first 3 months. Spend $15,000 in a year to earn a free weekend night.
Cardholders earn 3 points per dollar spent on purchases. Make purchases at Hilton locations to earn 12 more bonus points for each dollar. Restaurants, grocery stores, and gas stations earn 5 more bonus points.
All other spending on your card earns 3 more bonus points. If you spend $40,000 in a year you gain Hilton Honors Diamond status.
There is an annual fee of $95. There are no transaction fees and you do not earn bonus points for spending in foreign countries.
Travel Credit Cards in Review
When choosing from the best travel credit cards, pick the card that gives the rewards you want. Reward credit cards give hotel stays, airline flights, perks while you are traveling, or statement credits.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred(R) Card gives the best rewards for international travels and big spenders. While the Marriott Rewards and Hilton Honors are perfect for those who stay in hotels a lot.
The Platinum Card(R) from American Express gives the most perks in addition to earning points. The best credit card for travel miles is the Delta Gold SkyMiles.
The Bank of America(R) Travel Rewards is perfect for those who travel on a budget and want a statement credit. No matter which card you choose, you will need good to excellent credit.
Check out these other great credit card options.