So, you want to get into traveling using reward points (or just looking for new opportunities) and wondering which cards are leading the charge? This guide will outline the best cards on the market today that offer the highest credit card points for your dollar.
If you are new to the game, this is a good introduction to credit card rewards for travel and what it can do for you. (‘Intro to Travel Hacking’ blog.)
Having a good travel rewards credit card brings your next free trip a little closer to reality every time you use it. There are a few travel credit card point strategies that we will outline this month that make it easy for you to refer your partner, spouse or friend & start racking up the referral points.
Have a Good Travel Credit Card Points Strategy
I personally use the Southwest Airlines Reward Points for everything & then, every 90 days we take a trip for around $20. Having a good travel strategy throughout the year is essential to living your best life and traveling around the world at the lowest cost.
Here's my step by step travel strategy plan:
- Signup for Reward Credit Cards & Loyalty Accounts
- Plan Your Spending to Hit Your Reward Bonuses
- Maximize Your Signup Bonuses & Incentives
- Earn Additional Points Through Mobile Apps
- Earn Even More Points Through Their Email & Account To Do's
- Setup a Travel Savings Account
- Add 20% to Your Account
- Don't Use Miles on Merchandise or Subscriptions
- Create Yearly Travel Traditions Based on Your Likes
I personally setup a travel savings account & direct 20% to that account each month. When the amount gets to $6,000, I take a trip. I use the reward points for travel & hotel.
When I returned from my first trip, I had $5,300 still in my travel account. Now, I just have to add $700 to that account to take the NEXT vacation. The travel account and setting a goal takes off any pressure and relieves stress on how you're paying for the vacation. I find that you can have an incredible vacation for $6,000. (set the budget for your family and try to hit those benchmarks)
Set Yearly Travel Traditions
Every year, Thanksgiving rolls around. I'm not the carve the turkey, sit around & then sleep all day kind of person. I never liked that setting. It feels forced & way too short for me.
I'd rather take my family to concerts & experiences rather than stuff them full of stuffing. My mom and dad started this Vegas tradition when they bought their timeshare in the 1990's, and my best memories were made with them in Vegas. And honestly, now is the best time to buy your airline tickets in advance to get the lowest possible price.
My best memories of Thanksgiving with my family really are in Vegas. Check out the “on stage with Aerosmith” pic below. That is a money shot!
What happens usually the day after Thanksgiving. BLACK FRIDAY! We love traveling to Vegas for Thanksgiving & then, going to the high-end outlet malls for the best deals you'll get.
They have a ton of high-end shops that are 80% off the regular price. $20 jackets from North Face. $5 Calvin Klein underwear. $15 shirts. $75 Oaklies.
Saving a ton of money – I'm all about it.
The best way to travel is to start collecting credit card points. I personally use the Southwest Airlines Credit Card because I live 5 miles from Luv Airport in Dallas, TX.
When you signup, you get 40,000 points & then, you can refer others for a 10,000 bonus. Click here to check out all the Southwest Airline Credit Card options. I get 10,000 points if I refer you. Then, I recommend you do the same to start racking up your airline points.
What Credit Cards Offer the Highest Rewards
If you're looking for the most credit card points, let's breakdown a few I found this month.
Earn 50,000 Miles with The Capital One Venture Rewards Card
This is considered by many to be the number one travel rewards card on the market today. With a welcome bonus of 50,000 miles after spending just $3,000 within the first three months, that equates to about $500 in travel savings.
The annual fee of $95 is waived for the first year, and you earn 2 miles for every dollar spent on the card. What’s more, there are no foreign transaction fees, and miles won’t expire for the life of the account. Fly any airline and stay at any hotel, with no blackout dates.
Earn 60,000 Bonus Points with Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
The welcome bonus with this card is similar to Capital One, in that you receive 60,000 bonus points if you spend $4,000 on the card within the first 3 months (that’s $750 worth of free travel!) You will earn 2 points for every dollar spent on travel and dining and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases. In addition, you earn 5 points per dollar spent on Lyft rides through March 2022, and DashPass users have no delivery fees for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases.
Earn 60,000 Bonus Points from American Express Platinum Card
Amex is known as the more upscale version of the travel card, and is great for airport lounge perks, with access to the Global Lounge Collection. However, the slight drawback to this is that their annual fee is $550. Nevertheless, if you spend a total of $5,000 within the first 3 months of opening an account, you earn 60,000 bonus points (an estimated $792 travel value!) Account holders enjoy Uber VIP status, with free rides in the U.S. up to $15/month, and 5 points for every dollar spent on flights booked directly with airlines or American Express Travel.
Earn 140,000 Points with IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
The best hotel-based travel rewards card on the market. After spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months, earn 140,000 bonus points, good for hotels stays at IHG’s wide array of hotels worldwide.
Also, enjoy an annual rewards night, and another reward night every time you redeem points for a stay of 4 nights or more. You will earn 25 points for every dollar spent at an IHG hotel, and one point per dollar spent on all other purchases. Enjoy Platinum Elite status as long as you are a card member. With an annual fee of just $89, this is a great value.
It pays to take advantage of these great travel cards and start earning more free travel this year.