Chase Sapphire Preferred: Best Overall Travel Card
Why its great in one sentence: The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns valuable Ultimate Rewards points for every dollar you spend on it, and the points can be redeemed for travel and other eligible categories at 1.25 cents per point, or transferred to the programs airline and hotel partners for potentially even more useful travel redemptions.
This card is right for: People with larger than average travel and/or dining expenses who want a low-fee card with basic transferable points.
- Earn 2 points for every dollar spent on travel .
- Earn 3 points for every dollar spent on dining, select streaming services and select online grocery purchases.
- Earn 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.
- Points can be redeemed for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal at a rate of 1.25 cents per point.
- Now through Dec. 31, 2021, points can also be redeemed for purchases made at Airbnb and Away through awaytravel.com.
- Points can also be transferred to any of Chases 14 airline and hotel partners.
- No foreign transaction fees.
- $95 annual fee.
Sign-up bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.
Related: Heres why the Chase Sapphire Preferred is our favorite travel credit card for beginners.
Even our benchmark Citi Double Cash card earns 2% on all purchases , though you can get more value when redeeming your Sapphire Preferred points than you can with simple cash back.
How To Improve Your Credit Score
There are several steps you can take to try to improve your credit score. First, check your credit report to make sure there arent any errors that could be having an adverse effect. Paying your bills on time, every time will have the single biggest impact on your score. After payment history, the next biggest factor in your credit score is the amount of debt you have. Since credit reporting agencies dont have your income information, they use something called credit utilization instead of a debt-to-income ratio.
Your Spending Habits Have Changed
A change in spending habits is a common reason to get a second credit card, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Many credit card issuers have even evolved their offerings to better align with cardholders changing financial situations.
For example, after travel restrictions stopped many people from taking full advantage of their travel rewards credit cards with high annual fees, issuers added benefits more aligned with a switch to regular, everyday spending. Common issuers including Citi, Chase, American Express, and Capital One increased rewards on dining and groceries, partnered with brands like Uber Eats and Peloton, and offered more perks unrelated to travel at the start of the pandemic, many of which are still ongoing.
If youve had one credit card for a long time, theres a good chance your spending habits have changed. Take the time to make sure your credit cards rewards still match your spending and lifestyle, or consider adding another card to your wallet thats a better fit for your current circumstances.
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Avoid A Rewards Card If You’re Unable To Pay Off Your Balance
A rewards credit card might not be your best option if you’re unable to pay your balance off in full each month. The interest you will be charged on an unpaid balance each month is likely to be far more than the value of any rewards you earn for using the card.
You exchange them for a £100 voucher
You’ve been unable to pay off your balance in full
You now owe £150 in interest charges
You owe more interest than your voucher is worth
How Do Credit Card Rewards Work
When you make a purchase on a rewards credit card, youll earn a percentage back on your spending as either cash back, points or miles depending on the type of card and what type of rewards its offering. Airline credit cards, for example, will typically earn miles, cash back cards will earn you cash back and general purpose rewards cards may earn points that can be used for things like a statement credit or to redeem for travel, merchandise or other options.
Some rewards credit cards will earn the same flat rate back on all spending, like a card that earns 2% back on every purchase. Others will have tiered rewards where a certain type of purchase, like gas or groceries, may earn at a higher reward rate then other types of purchases. Before choosing a rewards card its important to consider your spending habits and the type of rewards you think youll get the most benefit from and then compare that to the various options available to you.
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Good For: Earning High Cashback On All Spending
On American Expresss secure website.
- No annual fee for supplementary cards
- Valueable insurances including baggage delay, flight delay, and car rental
- Entertainment and dining perks with American Express® Experiences
On American Expresss secure website.
2% cash back on all spending
Earn 10% cash back for the first 4 months , plus earn a $100 statement credit when you charge $4,000 in net purchases in the first 4 months.
Zomato Steps Foot Into The Fintech Space Launches Credit Cards
The food delivery titan, Zomato has entered the fintech space and is now rolling out co-branded credit cards for their customers. This has been facilitated via the companys partnership with Master Card and RBL.
With a target of issuing 1 million credit cards within the first year, this is an effort to help boost the Zomato Gold membership. Under this move, there are two credit cards to choose from: Edition Classic and Edition Card.
Starting off with a Rs.500 annual membership, the Edition Classic gives you Zomato credit for every purchase. This can then be redeemed at all Zomato-partnered restaurants. The Edition card has been priced at Rs.3,000 and will give the user lounge access at a few domestic airports.
3 March 2020
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How To Find The Best Credit Card
When it comes to finding the best credit card, youll need to determine what you plan to use the card for. Since most credit cards are designed to target specific categories rather than offer everything in one, you wont find one credit card claiming to be the best for all purposes.
When looking for the best credit card, you should consider several things. That includes what you want to use your card for, what you want to get out of your card, and whether or not you will be able to spend responsibly enough to make the card worth it.
How Did We Choose These Products
To help you choose a business credit card or a personal credit card, we consider several critical factors:
, both introductory and regular
Fees, such as an annual and transaction fee
Rewards and benefits, like points, travel, and concierge services
Accessibility, service areas and customer service
Welcome rewards, like intro APRs and cashback bonuses
Extra protections, like credit tools, lost luggage, travel, and car rental protections
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Best For Airlines: United Explorer Card
Earn 60,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Plus, an additional 10,000 bonus miles after you spend $6,000 in the first 6 months.
|$0 for the first year, then $95|
|Rewards Earning Rate||Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on dining, eligible delivery services, on hotel stays, and on United purchases. Enjoy priority boarding privileges and visit the United ClubSM with 2 one-time passes each year for your anniversary.|
|Balance Transfer Fee||Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.|
|Foreign transaction fee|
- Pros & Cons
The United Explorer Card offers the highest value per mile earned of any airline credit card, and miles can be redeemed in multiple ways, including for flights with participating member airlines in its Star Alliance, one of the largest global airline partnerships. The compelling introductory bonus really adds to the value of the card because of the high value placed on redeeming those points with United. The $95 annual fee is waived the first year and the card does not charge foreign transaction fees, making it great for international travel.
Special benefits every time you fly United
Several travel benefits and protections
Fewer free checked bags than with some competing airline cards
% Bonus Categoriesoffice Supplies Internet Cable And Phone Services
The Chase Ink Business Cash® Credit Card credit card has a category-heavy earnings structure: 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year and 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year. Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases. If your business spends heavily in any of these categories, the Chase Ink Business Cash® Credit Card card becomes a very attractive addition to your wallet, as the rewards in these categories can quickly add up. If you spend $25,000 per year at office supply stores, this 5% reward means an additional $1,250 of cash back in your pocket.
In addition to office supplies, technology and printing services, most office supply stores offer a wide range of gift cards to restaurants and other merchants, which could enable you to effectively expand this 5% bonus category to other business spending.
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Capital One Ventureone Rewards Credit Card
Best for travel rewards with no annual fee
- This card is a good fit for: Beginner travelers.
- This card is not a great choice for: Frequent travelers who want to capitalize on their travel purchases.
- What makes this card unique? Instead of having to book your rewards travel through the issuers site, you can redeem your miles as a statement credit to cover travel purchases made on your card within the last 90 days. This allows you to truly hunt around for the best deal, whether thats through Capital One or another merchant.
- Is the Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card worth it? With no annual fee, its hard to go wrong with the VentureOne. The ease of earning and redeeming miles is a huge plus, especially for those just getting started with travel rewards. That said, 1.25 miles per dollar isnt the greatest rate, and you might have to wait a while to accumulate enough miles to cover a flight. For example, $6,000 in annual spending would earn you 7,500 miles over the course of a year . Miles are worth 1 cent apiece when redeemed for travel or a statement credit, so that gives you an annual rewards value of just $75.
Jump back to offer details.
Which Credit Card Has The Best Rewards Program
The best rewards program will vary depending on your usage. Will you redeem your points for luxury travel or to visit Grandma? Each use will maximize a different type of reward. If you are looking for a flexible travel currency, Chase Ultimate Rewards will transfer to over a dozen travel partners in addition to their ability to be redeemed directly for travel.
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Other Top Credit Cards That Just Missed The Cut
Our list of the top rewards credit cards includes seven cards, but there are dozens of other great options out there. We limited our recommendations in this guide to our most recommended cards, but there were several others on our shortlist that didn’t make the final cut. Here’s a look at those cards and why we elected to leave them out:
Td Aeroplan Visa Infinite
Why is it one of the best?
- The card comes with a huge sign-up bonus. As a new cardholder, you can recieve: a first-year annual fee rebate, up to 20,000 bonus points, and a âBuddy Passâ companion ticket . Offer ends August 16, 2021
- While Aeroplan is owned by Air Canada, you can also redeem points on over two dozen Star Alliance partner airlines including Lufthansa, United Airlines, and more.
- Aeroplan points can deliver great value depending on your travel routes and the time of year.
- As an Aeroplan credit card holder, youâll receive preferred pricing and can often book flights on Air Canada with fewer points.
- With Aeroplanâs generous stopover policy, you can travel further and visit more locations while stretching the value of your points. .
- When flying on Air Canada, you and up to eight travel companions can check in your first bag for free .
- It offers a slew of side perks including built-in mobile device insurance and a NEXUS fee reimbursement every 48 months for smoother cross-border between the US and Canada.
- Comprehensive travel insurance benefits including hotel-motel burglary insurance and travel medical insurance for trips up to 21 days.
- Unlike most other credit cards, authorized users will receive access to virtually all the same perks as the primary cardholder.
- Get Aeroplan perks including access to the Aeroplan e-store and the ability to earn âSQM and SQSâ on your everyday spending that goes towards achieving elite Aeroplan status.
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Cash Back Rewards Are Consistent In Value
When you’re working with travel rewards, the value you get for every point can vary significantly based on how you redeem them. Even if you transfer your rewards to the same airline, redeeming for a domestic flight versus an international flight could result in earning $0.01 per point instead of $0.04 per point or more.
In other words, if your travel rewards card earns 3x points per dollar on purchases, that could be the equivalent of 3% back on your purchases — or more than four times that.
Cash back rewards, on the other hand, are consistent in value. Every time you redeem your cash back for a statement credit, you’ll get the same return as you did before . So, if your cash back card earns 3% cash back at grocery stores, you’ll always get that 3% value.
Youre Our First Priorityevery Time
We believe everyone should be able to make financial decisions with confidence. And while our site doesnât feature every company or financial product available on the market, weâre proud that the guidance we offer, the information we provide and the tools we create are objective, independent, straightforward â and free.
So how do we make money? Our partners compensate us. This may influence which products we review and write about , but it in no way affects our recommendations or advice, which are grounded in thousands of hours of research. Our partners cannot pay us to guarantee favorable reviews of their products or services.Here is a list of our partners.
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What Are The Types Of Rewards Credit Cards
There are three types of rewards credit cards. The first is a card that is offered through a specific airline or hotel chain that allows you to earn rewards towards awards with that company or its partners.
The second is flexible rewards credit cards. Flexible cards offer you the ability to transfer to a number of different travel partners in addition to being able to redeem miles directly for travel. You can redeem for travel via statement credit or purchasing from the credit cards website depending on the specific card.
Finally, you have cards that allow you to redeem rewards for statement credit, sometimes for a specific category such as travel, or that offer cash back rewards you could then use on whatever you would like.
How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt
There are multiple ways to get a handle on your credit card debt. The right one for you will depend on your budget and goals. The debt snowball and debt avalanche methods are two commonly used ways to pay down debt. With the debt snowball method you make the minimum payment on each card. Then you put any additional money you have toward the card with the smallest balance. Instead of looking at each cards interest rate, you focus just on the outstanding balance. The theory is that by focusing on the smallest balance first, youll pay it off quickly.
The debt avalanche method the focus shifts from the smallest balance to the highest interest rate. All extra funds above the minimum payment go to the card with the highest interest rate. Once paid in full, money is then directed to the card with the next highest interest rate.
Other options to help pay down credit card debt include shifting the balance to a card with an introductory 0% APR balance transfer offer, taking out a personal loan or in more challenging circumstances, asking your issuer for help with a debt repayment plan.
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Wells Fargo Active Cash Card: Best For 2% Cash Rewards
Why we picked it:For those averse to spending categories and required enrollments, the Wells Fargo Active Cash Card offers a much more simplified way to rack up rewards with its unlimited 2% cash rewards on eligible day-to-day purchases. Depending on how much you spend, this could quickly add up. Theres also the possibility to snag a $200 cash rewards introductory bonus after spending $1,000 on eligible purchases in the first three months of opening your account. Members also enjoy an extra long 0% introductory APR period of 15 months on qualifying balance transfers and eligible purchases, then 14.99% to 24.99% variable APR.
Pros: The card includes Visa Signature Concierge benefits at hotel properties around the world as well as cellphone protection, and cash rewards never expire so long as your account is active. There is no annual fee for this card.
Cons: Benefits can seem limited compared to similar cards. Qualifying balance transfers must be made within the first 120 days as a cardholder to receive the special intro rate. Theres also a balance transfer fee of 3% if you transfer the balance within 120 days 5% if you dont . While the intro APR period is generous, the Citi® Double Cash Card offers an introductory APR term on balance transfers as well as an unlimited 2% cash back .
Who should apply? Moderate spenders hoping to earn rewards on eligible purchases will find a lot of value in the Wells Fargo Active Cash Cards unlimited 2% cash rewards rate.