Top 3 Credit Cards for Rewards on Family Trips

Gas can make summer road trips expensive, but the right credit card can earn some of that spending back.

[Disclosure: Cards from our partners are reviewed below.]

Field trips are a great way to entertain or educate the entire family, both kids and adults alike. But parents know that food, entertainment, and transportation costs can quickly turn one afternoon trip into a money pit.

Credit cards can help, offering rewards that can help parents or chaperones recoup a bit of that investment in the form of cash back or other bonuses.
Here are three credit cards for family field trips.

1. Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express

Rewards: 6% cash back on up to $6,000 in annual US supermarket purchases (and 1% cash back on supermarket purchases beyond that threshold); 3% cash back at US gas stations and participating US department stores; 1% cash back on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
$150 statement credit if you spend $1,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee: $0 for the first year, then $95.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR): Variable 13.99% to 24.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It: Loading kids into the car for a long drive is a little easier with this card.
For Your Field Trips: If you’re frequently driving to your family activities, 3% cash back at gas stations can save you a lot. Supermarket and select department store purchases earn special cash back rates as well.
Drawbacks: There’s a $95 annual fee after the first year.

2. Citi ThankYou Preferred Card

 Rewards: Two points per dollar spent on dining and entertainment; one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
None
Annual Fee:
$0
APR:
0% APR for 15 months on purchases, as well as on balance transfers made within the first four months, then variable 14.49% to 24.49% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It:
You’ll earn points as you take your family out for food and entertainment.
For Your Field Trips:
Feeding and entertaining your family earns you two points on the dollar, while other purchases earn one point per dollar. The entertainment category includes museums, movie theaters, aquariums, carnivals, sporting events, and many other kid-friendly activities. Points can be redeemed for travel, gift cards, charitable donations, and more. The card also provides benefits through the Citi Private Pass program, which unlocks special access to tickets for hundreds of events.
Drawbacks: If your field trips are usually free or inexpensive, you won’t earn as many points.

3. Bank of America Cash Rewards Credit Card

Rewards: 3% cash back on gas and 2% cash back on groceries and wholesale club purchases for up to $2,500 in quarterly combined purchases; 1% cash back on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus: $150 bonus cash rewards if you spend $500 in the first 90 days.
Annual Fee: $0
APR:
0% APR for 12 months on balance transfers completed in the first 60 days and all purchases, then variable 13.99% to 23.99% APR on transfers and purchases.
Why We Picked It: The card offers cash back rewards and a great program for museum lovers.
For Your Field Trips: 
Driving to destinations is a little easier with 3% cash back on gas purchases. Plus, with the Museums on Us program (which is available to all Bank of America debit and credit accountholders), cardholders get one free general admission ticket to over 175 museums and cultural institutions on the first full weekend of every month. This includes the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, and many more.
Drawbacks: 
There’s a quarterly cap on special cash back rates, so big spenders may want to keep looking.

How to Choose a Card for Family Field Trips

Choosing a card for your family field trips largely depends on the types of excursions you tend to take. If you frequently drive long distances, a gas rewards card would be a great fit. If you go to live shows and dine out with the family often, a card with dining and entertainment rewards might be more appropriate. Or, if your trips span a wide range of activities, you might prefer a card with a solid rewards rate for all purchases.

What Credit Is Required for a Family Field Trip Credit Card?  

Credit cards with spending rewards usually require good to excellent credit. Before you apply, you should check your credit—you don’t want a hard inquiry to ding your credit score if you’ll be rejected. You can check your credit report for free at Credit.com.

Image: monkeybusinessimages 

At publishing time, the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express and Citi ThankYou Preferred cards are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees, and terms for credit cards, loans, and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees, and terms for credit cards, loans, and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees, and terms with credit card issuers, banks, or other financial institutions directly.

The post Top 3 Credit Cards for Rewards on Family Trips appeared first on Credit.com.

5 Credit Cards for Frequent Travelers

airplane

[Disclosure: Cards from our partners are reviewed below.]

Airport security can be a big source of frustration, subjecting fliers to time-consuming lines and checkpoints. Now, programs like Global Entry and TSA PreCheck offer expedited security lines with fewer requirements to eligible travelers. Unfortunately, you’ll need to come up with an application fee of up to $100 and a renewal fee every few years.

Some travel credit cards can help get you to your gate by reimbursing you for these costs or offering expedited security through membership programs.

Here are five cards that can help you get through airport security faster.

1. The Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card

Rewards: Five points per dollar spent at participating hotels; two points per dollar spent on dining, car rentals, and flights purchased from the airline; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus: Two free nights at eligible tier 1–4 Ritz-Carlton hotels if you spend $4,000 in the first three months, and 10,000 bonus points after your first purchase and the addition of an authorized user within the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$450
Annual Percentage Rate (APR):
Variable 16.99% to 23.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It: Ritz-Carlton lovers can earn elite travel benefits and receive a Global Entry application credit.
For Airport Security: This card earns rewards points for all purchases and offers perks including an annual $300 travel credit and elite benefits at Ritz-Carlton properties. On top of that, there’s a $100 credit for your Global Entry application every four years.
Drawbacks:
If you don’t frequent Ritz-Carlton hotels, this card’s specific rewards may not be best for you. 

2. JetBlue Plus Card

Rewards: Six points per dollar spent on JetBlue purchases; two points per dollar spent at restaurants and grocery stores; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
30,000 bonus points if you spend $1,000 in the first 90 days.
Annual Fee: $99
APR:
Variable 12.99%, 20.99%, or 25.99% APR on purchases; 0% intro APR on balance transfers made within 45 days for 12 months, then variable 12.99%, 20.99%, or 25.99% APR.
Why We Picked It: Big spenders can earn their way into a membership program with security benefits.
For Airport Security: 
Frequent JetBlue fliers can use this card to earn rewards points and many JetBlue perks. On top of that, spending $50,000 in a calendar year gets you into the TrueBlue Mosaic Program, which includes access to expedited security lines and complimentary alcohol on flights.
Drawbacks: 
If you don’t fly JetBlue, this card may not get you the reward points you want.

3. Chase Sapphire Reserve 

Rewards: Three points per dollar spent on travel and dining; one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
50,000 bonus points if you spend $4,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$450
APR:
Variable 16.99% to 23.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It: 
This card earns valuable travel points and offers a credit for your security application.
For Airport Security: 
Travelers can use this card to earn rewards points with competitive redemption rates, receive an annual $300 travel credit, access airport lounges, and more. Plus, you’ll get up to a $100 credit for your Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application every four years.
Drawbacks: 
There’s a steep $450 annual fee.

4. Citi Prestige Card 

Rewards: Three points per dollar spent on air travel and hotels; two points per dollar spent on dining and entertainment; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
75,000 bonus points if you spend $7,500 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$450
APR: 
Variable 16.74% to 24.74% APR on purchases; and balance transfers. Balance transfer must be made in the first two months from the date the card is opened.
Why We Picked It: 
Many spending categories earn double or triple rewards points, and you get a credit for your security application.
For Airport Security: 
Along with travel rewards points, an annual $250 travel credit, airport lounge access, and complimentary hotel nights, you’ll receive a $100 credit toward your Global Entry application every five years.
Drawbacks: 
At $250, the annual travel credit is slightly lower than some competitors.

5. The Platinum Card from American Express

Rewards: Five points per dollar spent on flights booked with the airline, flights booked with American Express Travel, and eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com; one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
60,000 bonus points if you spend $5,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$550
APR: 
There is no APR, as it’s a charge card that requires your balance to be paid in full every month. Late fees may apply to late payments.
Why We Picked It: 
American Express offers a security application credit for you and every authorized user.
For Airport Security: 
The Platinum Card boasts a seriously impressive list of travel benefits, including VIP hotel perks and Uber, hotel, and airline credits. Both primary cardholders and authorized users with their own cards get up to $100 in Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credits every four years.
Drawbacks: If you prefer to carry a balance month to month, this card isn’t right for you. 

How to Choose a Card for Airport Security Perks

Many credit cards can help you get through airport security, usually by offering a credit for your Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application. Most premium travel credit cards that offer this feature charge steep annual fees, so make sure the offered benefits are worth the cost of admission.

Look for a card that rewards the types of purchases you tend to make, or it won’t be a good fit. For instance, if you prefer to fly Southwest, a competing airline’s credit card won’t land you the best value.

If you can’t take full advantage of a travel card’s benefits and rewards, you may want to consider more cost-effective cards and put the money you’ll save in annual fees toward your Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application.

What Credit Is Required for a Travel Credit Card?

Premium travel credit cards usually require excellent credit. You’ll want to be confident in your credit before you apply and trigger a hard inquiry into your credit report. You can check your credit report free at Credit.com.

Image: istock

At publishing time, the JetBlue Plus Card and the Platinum Card from American Express are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).

 Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees, and terms for credit cards, loans, and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees, and terms for credit cards, loans, and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees, and terms with credit card issuers, banks, or other financial institutions directly.

The post 5 Credit Cards for Frequent Travelers appeared first on Credit.com.

5 Hotel Credit Cards for Travelers Who Love Luxury

Rearview shot of a businessman looking through a hotel room window and talking on a cellphone

[Disclosure: Cards from our partners are reviewed below.]

Luxury hotels are perfect for those who desire special treatment when they travel. Large hotel chains can offer pristine grounds, exciting experiences, and loads of amenities at thousands of properties around the world.

Many luxury hotel chains have their own branded credit cards that let customers earn rewards, special benefits, or VIP status. These cards can take a stay at your favorite property to the next level.

Here are five hotel-branded credit cards for loyal guests who crave luxury.

1. Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express

Rewards: Up to five points per dollar spent at participating Starwood hotels; two points per dollar spent at participating Marriott Rewards hotels; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
25,000 bonus points if you spend $3,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$0 the first year, then $95.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR):
Variable 16.24% to 20.24% APR on purchases, as well as on balance transfers made within 60 days of opening your account.
Why We Picked It:
Loyal Starwood and Marriott guests earn rewards for hotel stays and get many special perks.
Benefits:
All eligible purchases earn points, with eligible Marriott purchases earning two points per dollar and eligible Starwood purchases earning up to five points on the dollar. Points are redeemable for flights, experiences, and more, including free nights at luxury Starwood properties such as St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, and W Hotels. Your eligible stays go toward earning Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) elite status, which may grant point bonuses, late checkouts, room upgrades, and other perks. You’ll also enjoy free internet access at participating hotels, and the card has foreign transaction fees.
Drawbacks: Although Starwood and Marriott have merged, their rewards programs are still separate. You can transfer points between them, but you’ll have to maintain two accounts to earn full membership rewards at both hotels.

2. Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card

Rewards: Five points per dollar spent at participating Ritz-Carlton Rewards and SPG hotels; two points per dollar spent on dining, car rentals, and flights purchased directly from the airline; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
Two free nights at any eligible tier 1–4 Ritz-Carlton property if you spend $4,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$450
APR:
Variable 16.99% to 23.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It:
Cardholders can earn points in many ways and receive an annual travel credit.
Benefits:
All qualifying purchases earn points, with extra points for eligible hotel stays, flights, car rentals, and dining. Points can be redeemed for travel expenses including Ritz-Carlton stays. An annual $300 travel credit can be used for baggage fees, flight upgrades, airport lounge access, and more. The card also offers $100 in savings on eligible airline tickets, a $100 credit toward Global Entry applications, and access to over 900 worldwide airport lounges. At Ritz-Carlton hotels, cardholders can enjoy Gold Elite status for the first year, a $100 hotel credit for stays of two nights or more, and three annual Ritz-Carlton Club Level upgrades for stays of seven nights or more. Additionally, there are no foreign transaction fees, making it easy to take your card abroad on your next vacation.
Drawbacks: There’s a steep $450 annual fee.

3. Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card

Rewards: Five points per dollar spent at participating SPG and Marriott Rewards hotels; two points per dollar spent on airline tickets purchased directly from the airline, car rentals, and dining; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
80,000 bonus points if you spend $3,000 on purchases within three months.
Annual Fee:
$85
APR:
Variable 16.99% to 23.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It: 
A free night’s stay every year, a big sign-up bonus, and a variety of ways to earn points make this card valuable for Marriott loyalists.
Benefits:
All purchases earn rewards, but eligible hotel stays, airline tickets, car rentals, and dining can earn you extra. Points can be redeemed for travel, merchandise, gift cards, and more. You’ll get an annual free night’s stay in a participating category 1–5 hotel after your account anniversary, and your card is guaranteed to earn you Silver Elite status every year. There are also no foreign transaction fees.
Drawbacks: 
The greatest value is reserved for frequent Marriott guests.

4. Hilton Honors Surpass Card from American Express

Rewards: 12 points per dollar spent at participating Hilton properties; six points per dollar spent at restaurants, supermarkets, and gas stations in the US; and three points per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
100,000 bonus points if you spend $3,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$75
APR:
Variable 16.24% to 20.24% APR on purchases, as well as on balance transfers requested within the first 60 days of opening your account.
Why We Picked It: 
Hilton’s credit card boasts a moderate annual fee and an impressive points program.  
Benefits:
Like other hotel cards, Hilton’s card earns extra points for eligible hotel stays and select purchase categories. What’s unique is that even everyday purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants earn triple points on the dollar. Using your card to book online and pay for a Hilton stay will land you a 500-point bonus. You’ll automatically earn Hilton Honors Gold status, and you’ll be bumped up to Diamond status if you spend $40,000 in a calendar year.
Drawbacks: 
All foreign transactions are charged 2.7% of the purchase amount.

5. The Hyatt Credit Card

Rewards: Three points per dollar spent at participating Hyatt hotels; two points per dollar spent on dining, car rentals, and flights purchased directly with the airline; and one point per dollar spent on other purchases.
Sign-Up Bonus:
40,000 bonus points if you spend $2,000 in the first three months.
Annual Fee:
$75
APR:
Variable 16.99% to 23.99% APR on purchases and balance transfers.
Why We Picked It:
Cardholders earn points for a wide range of purchases and get an annual free night after their cardmember anniversary.
Benefits:
You’ll get triple points at Hyatt, double points on select purchase types, and one point elsewhere. Points can be redeemed for free stays and upgrades, room service, spa treatments, and other rewards. Plus, you’ll receive an annual free night at any category 1–4 hotel or resort after your first account anniversary. There are no foreign transaction fees.
Drawbacks:
The card’s best value is limited to frequent Hyatt guests.

How to Choose a Hotel Rewards Credit Card

If you’re fiercely loyal to one hotel chain, start by finding out if that chain offers a credit card. Hotel cards will likely offer perks like room upgrades, point rewards, and special benefits that you can use anytime you travel to an eligible property.

Don’t jump on your favorite hotel’s credit card without evaluating the competition, though. Hotel-branded credit cards reserve their best value for those who spend a lot of time at eligible properties. And with point-transfer programs, you might even have the ability to transfer points from other cards at a one-to-one value to your hotel or airline of choice.

If you’re an agnostic traveler who stays at many different hotel chains, a general travel credit card may be a better choice. These cards offer a variety of ways to redeem points for travel and aren’t tied down to any specific company.

Make sure to also check the fees and APR. Travel rewards are great, but fees and interest can cut into the value, so try to pick a card that makes good financial sense. 

What Credit Is Required for a Hotel Rewards Credit Card?

Cards that offer epic hotel rewards often require excellent credit. You should be confident in your chances of approval before you apply, because a hard credit inquiry from a credit card application can lower your credit score a few points. You can check two of your credit reports for free at Credit.com.

At publishing time, the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express and Hilton Honors Surpass Credit Card from American Express are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).

Image: kupicoo

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees, and terms for credit cards, loans, and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees, and terms for credit cards, loans, and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees, and terms with credit card issuers, banks, or other financial institutions directly.

The post 5 Hotel Credit Cards for Travelers Who Love Luxury appeared first on Credit.com.

5 Secured Credit Cards That Offer Rewards

Smiling young woman holding a credit card and typing on a laptop.

[Disclosure:  Cards from our partners are reviewed below.]

Consumers with poor or nonexistent credit should consider secured credit cards for their spending and credit-building needs. Secured cards have looser credit restrictions and require a security deposit up front to open, but otherwise they operate like traditional credit cards.

With secured cards, your poor or limited credit history won’t necessarily keep you from earning rewards. While most secured credit cards are no-frills affairs, some do offer spending incentives.

Here are five secured credit cards with real rewards.

1. The Discover it Secured Credit Card

Rewards: 2% cash back on up to $1,000 in combined purchases at restaurants and gas stations per quarter; 1% cash back on everything else.

Sign-Up Bonus: First-year cash back match.

Annual Fee: None

APR:Variable 23.99% on purchases; 10.99% for six months on balance transfers, then variable 23.99%.

Why We Picked It: Gas and dining purchases earn double cash back, and there’s a lucrative sign-up bonus.

Benefits: All gas station and restaurant spending earns 2% cash back for up to $1,000 in purchases each quarter. Other purchases earn 1% cash back. Discover’s match bonus doubles the first-year cash back value.

Drawbacks: If you don’t own a car or dine out often, your cash back potential is diminished.

2. SKYPASS Visa Secured Card

Rewards: One mile for every dollar spent on eligible purchases.

Sign-Up Bonus: 5,000 SKYPASS bonus miles upon your first purchase.

Annual Fee: $50

APR:Variable 17.24% on purchases and balance transfers.

Why We Picked It: Cardholders can earn miles with select airlines.

Benefits: Every purchase earns one SKYPASS mile per dollar. You’ll get 5,000 bonus miles right out of the gate and 1,000 bonus miles every year upon renewal. Points can be redeemed for flights and upgrades with SkyTeam partners—including Delta, Korean Air, and Air France—or for other travel expenses.

Drawbacks: There’s a $50 annual fee, and miles are limited to twenty participating airlines.

3. Best Western Rewards Secured MasterCard

Rewards: Thirteen points for every dollar spent on Best Western stays; two points for every dollar spent on other purchases.

Sign-Up Bonus: 5,000 bonus points upon your first purchase.

Annual Fee: $29

APR:Variable 21.99% on purchases and balance transfers.

Why We Picked It: Frequent Best Western guests can earn points for future reservations and more.

Benefits: Cardholders earn thirteen points per dollar on Best Western stays, with ten points through the Best Western Rewards program and three points for using your card. All other purchases earn double points. Points can be redeemed for Best Western stays, gift cards, merchandise, and more.

Drawbacks: If you aren’t a loyal Best Western guest, this card isn’t for you. 

4. Navy Federal nRewards Secured Credit Card

Rewards: One point per dollar spent on all purchases.

Sign-Up Bonus: None

Annual Fee: $0

APR:Variable 9.99% to 18% on purchases and balance transfers.

Why We Picked It: Navy Federal members can earn points for goodies.

Benefits: All purchases earn one point. Points can be redeemed for gift cards or merchandise.

Drawbacks: You must be a Navy Federal member to access this card. Points expire after four years.

5. AeroMexico Visa Secured Card

Rewards: Two miles for every dollar spent on gas and groceries; one mile for every dollar spent on everything else.

Sign-Up Bonus: 5,000 bonus miles and a companion flight certificate with your first purchase.

Annual Fee: $0 the first year, then $25.

APR: Variable 23.99% on purchases and balance transfers.

Why We Picked It: Frequent AeroMexico flyers can enjoy the miles earned with this card.

Benefits: Gas and grocery purchases earn double miles, and all other purchase earn single miles. Your first purchase earns 5,000 bonus miles and a companion certificate. Plus, you’ll get an additional $99 companion certificate each year you renew.

Drawbacks: If you don’t fly AeroMexico, you won’t see much value in this card.

Choosing a Secured Credit Card with Rewards

Because secured credit cards are primarily intended for consumers with poor or nonexistent credit, building credit should be your primary goal. Rewards should be a secondary concern.

Pay close attention to the fees and APR associated with any cards you’re considering. Annual fees and interest can eat into the overall value of earned rewards.

You’ll also want to evaluate security deposit policies. Many secured credit cards can be opened with as little as $200, and the credit limit will equal your deposit. Some cards may increase your credit limit without requiring an additional deposit after a period of timely payments and responsible card use.

When it comes to rewards, choose a card that rewards your specific spending habits and provides redemption options you’ll actually use.

What Credit Is Required to Get a Secured Credit Card?

Secured credit cards are generally available to consumers with poor or nonexistent credit history, but that doesn’t mean approval is guaranteed. To increase your chances of approval, you should check your credit score before you apply to make sure you meet the requirements. You can check your credit report for free at Credit.com.

Image: istock

At publishing time, the Discover it Secured Credit Card is offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.

The post 5 Secured Credit Cards That Offer Rewards appeared first on Credit.com.

6 Credit Cards for College Commuters

A long commute to college isn't fun, unless you have a credit card that rewards you for driving and spending money on gas.

[DISCLOSURE: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]

Waking up early to rush to class is never fun, and having to commute to school doesn’t make mornings any easier. Whether you live 15 minutes from campus or more than an hour away, every minute and mile counts. Being a few minutes late can ruin your performance on an exam, and having to drive a few extra miles can wreck your wallet.

While the first rings of an alarm clock might never get less jarring, having a credit card made for commuters can ease your mind during your morning commute. All of these cards offer great perks as well as gas-focused rewards that’ll turn every commute into an opportunity to rack up cash. (It’s a good idea to check your credit before applying for a new card. You can check two of your scores for free on Credit.com.)

1. Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express

Rewards: 6% cash back on up to $6,000 in annual spending at supermarkets, 3% cash back at gas stations and select department stores and 1% cash back on everything else.
Signup Bonus: $150 statement credit after spending $1,000 on your new card within the first 3 months.
Annual Fee: $0 intro annual fee for the first year of Card Membership, then a $95 annual fee.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR): Variable 13.99% to 24.99%.
Why We Picked It: The rewards are focused on gas and groceries, plus the APR can be low depending on your credit.
For College Commuters: You’ll save on gas in the long run, and buying snacks for your afternoon commute is more appetizing when you realize how much cash back you earn.
Drawbacks: If you constantly frequent gas stations, you may prefer a card with slightly better rewards on gas.

2. PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature Card

Rewards: 5% cash back on gas purchases, 3% cash back on groceries and 1% cash back on everything else.
Signup Bonus: $100 Statement Credit when you spend $1,500 in first 90 days.
Annual Fee: None
APR: 0% intro APR on balance transfers for a year, and then variable 9.74% to 17.99%.
Why We Picked It: This card features unlimited rewards and a solid APR, alongside 1% cash back on everything.
For College Commuters: If you have a long commute that requires a lot of gas, this is a great card for racking up gas rewards.
Drawbacks: You have to become a member of the Pentagon Federal Credit Union.

3. BankAmericard Cash Rewards

Rewards: 3% cash back on gas, 2% at grocery stores and 1% on everything else. These rewards are capped at $2,500.
Signup Bonus: $150 cash rewards bonus online after spending $500 on purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening.
Annual Fee: None
APR: 0% APR for a year on purchases, and on balance transfers made within 60 days of opening your account. After that, variable APR of 13.99% to 23.99% will apply.
Why We Picked It: Your rewards never expire and they’re capped at a decent level if you’re not a large spender.
For College Commuters: If you have a shorter commute or very fuel efficient car, this card is for you because it has decent rewards up to a certain point.
Drawbacks: If you drive very often you might use up your rewards quickly.

4. Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card

Rewards: 3% cash back on gas, 2% on groceries and 1% back on everything else.
Signup Bonus: Earn 20,000 bonus points if you use your card to make $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months.
Annual Fee: None
APR: 0% APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers. After that, variable APR will be 13.99% to 25.99%.
Why We Picked It: Your points last five years and there’s no annual fee.
For College Commuters: You can trade your points for cash, which is perfect for buying snacks, car chargers and more for your commute. Or, if your car breaks down during a drive, you can use your points for a rental car.
Drawbacks: The points eventually expire and the APR is on the higher side.

5. Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi

Rewards: 4% cash back on eligible gas purchases up to $7,000 per year. Earn 3% cash back on restaurants and travel, 2% back on Costco purchases and 1% cash back on everything else.
Signup Bonus: None
Annual Fee: $0 (you will need a paid Costco membership)
APR: 0% APR on purchases for seven months, after that, variable 16.24% APR
Why We Picked It: The rewards are excellent and heavily focus on gas. (Full Disclosure: Citibank advertises on Credit.com, but that results in no preferential editorial treatment.)
For College Commuters: This card is great for those who are near a Costco during their commute and often get their gas there.
Drawbacks: This card is only available to those with an active Costco membership.

6. Marathon Credit Card by Visa

Rewards: Receive $0.25 rebate per each gallon of gas you purchase when you charge at least $1,000 that month, $0.15 rebate per gallon if you spend at least $500 that month and $0.05 rebate per gallon if you spend less than $500.
Signup Bonus: Receive up to $0.50 per gallon for the first 90 days.
Annual Fee: None
APR: For purchases, 25.99%, 21.99%, or 17.99% when you open your account, based on your creditworthiness. For, balance transfers and cash advances, 26.99%.
Why We Picked It: This credit card focuses on gas and features great rewards.
For College Commuters: Living in the Midwest or Southeast has its perks if you have Marathon gas stations nearby. Whether you’re buying gas frequently for a long commute or only buying it occasionally, you’re still earning rewards.
Drawbacks: The APR for this card is really high. The rebates can only be redeemed as $25 Marathon cash cards that expire after 24 months. This card is only worth it if you frequently go to Marathon for gas.

Image: Georgijevic

At publishing time, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature® Card, Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card and Costco Anywhere Visa® Card are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for this card. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.

The post 6 Credit Cards for College Commuters appeared first on Credit.com.

I Have a World Elite MasterCard: What Does That Get Me?

Make sure you take advantage of all the benefits this card has to offer. Here are the perks you may not be aware of.

[Disclosure: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]

When you are searching for a new credit card, you tend to be drawn into the information the credit card companies want you to see. They highlight the signup bonus, the ability to earn rewards on purchases, and the annual fees. But your card might have other benefits that you didn’t even know about. (Wondering what all the hype is about regarding credit cards with lavish perks but that come paired with high annual fees? We break it down here.)

MasterCard is one of the largest payment processors of credit cards in the world. If your card happens to be a MasterCard, then you likely have one of three different types: A standard card, a World card, or a World Elite card. Let’s take a deeper look into all the different benefits that you will receive if you have a World Elite MasterCard. (Considering adding plastic to your wallet? Keep in mind that getting a credit card with amazing perks, typically requires you have excellent credit. If you don’t know where your credit stands, you should find out before you apply, which you can do for free right here on Credit.com.)

Priceless Cities

The idea that life experiences offer priceless amounts of value is something that MasterCard stresses within their marketing campaigns, and that idea extends to their Priceless Cities benefit. As a MasterCard World Elite cardholder, you will have access to packages that include everything great that cities may have to offer. A couple of the current packages available are a trip for two to New York City to watch the fireworks on the 4th of July at One World Observatory or a chance to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on Broadway and then meet the cast.

Luxury Travel Benefits

Your MasterCard World Elite card will also allow you to travel in style with their luxury travel benefits. If you need to book a hotel, you can use the Luxury Hotels and Resorts portfolio to find a room. You will receive a bunch of different credit card perks, including complimentary breakfast, and potential room upgrades. Speaking of upgrades, your card might also get you upgraded to business class on your next flight. Luxury Travel benefits will also give you elite status at many different car rental companies and an onboard credit with Royal Caribbean cruises.

24/7 Concierge

Another perk of being a MasterCard World Elite cardholder is that you will have a personal concierge available 24/7. Maybe you need help booking a dinner reservation or you need to find the perfect gift for your spouse. No matter what it is, this card means you have someone who can help at all times.

MasterCard Airport Concierge

If you want to get through the airport a little quicker, then you can call on your MasterCard airport concierge. With this service, you’ll be met at the curb and escorted to the gate when you get to the airport and picked up at the aircraft gate upon arrival and escorted to your connecting flight or curbside. This takes out a lot of the hassles and stresses of getting around airports you’re unfamiliar with. (If you’re a frequent traveler, you may want to check out these credit cards that are ideal for each of the major airports in America.)

Trip Cancellation Insurance

Whether it’s a tropical storm or a major winter storm along the Eastern Seaboard, the weather can cancel flights affecting travelers all over the country. That means if you have non-refundable travel plans, you could end up scrambling. Luckily, as a MasterCard World Elite cardholder, you will have trip cancellation insurance. This will help by reimbursing you for any nonrefundable fees that you might have when your flight is cancelled or delayed because of a covered reason.

Price Protection

Your card might already come with the price protection benefits, but if not it’s included with all MasterCard World Elite cards. If you purchase an item and the price drops within the first 120 days of purchase, MasterCard could refund you the difference.

Extended Warranty

Some stores and products don’t exactly have warranties that last long enough. With your MasterCard World Elite card, the time frame will be doubled on any warranty of 24 months or less.

Priceless Golf

MasterCard put together a bunch of different golf packages for the avid golfer. You could have the opportunity to play one of many Tournament Players Club (TPC) courses across the country. For example, you could book a package through MasterCard for the TPC Scottsdale. This package includes four nights at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, three rounds of golf, complimentary breakfast each morning, a one-hour golf lesson, complimentary rental clubs and practice balls, plus a commemorative bag tag. Plus, because you have a World Elite MasterCard, you will also receive a complimentary two-day Avis car rental.

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.

Image: svetikd

The post I Have a World Elite MasterCard: What Does That Get Me? appeared first on Credit.com.

Credit Card Rewards More Than Doubled Since the Recession, New Study Shows

Credit card rewards have become increasingly lucrative, as credit card issuers battle for customers. From 100,000 point sign-on bonuses to 6% cash back offers, it has never been a better time to be a credit card customer.

These rewards come at a steep price for banks. To find out just how much the top banks are spending on lucrative credit card rewards, MagnifyMoney reviewed data from the six largest credit card issuers representing 67.6% of the market.

The rapid growth in credit card rewards are dramatic:

Rewards spending doubles

  • Since 2010, credit card rewards spending has more than doubled, from $10.6 billion to $22.6 billion.
    • In 2016, the largest credit card issuers spent $22.6 billion on rewards, compared to $10.6 billion in 2010.
    • In Q1 2017, credit card issuers spent $6.2 billion on rewards, compared to $5.1 billion in Q1 2016 — a 22% year-over-year growth rate.

The New King of Rewards Spend: Chase

  • Chase leads the pack. Beginning in 2016, Chase has led the pack in total rewards spending. Spending on credit card rewards at Chase grew 123% since 2010, and Chase now spends more money on rewards than longtime American Express. Although the headlines have focused on the success of the Chase Sapphire Reserve launch in mid-2016, Chase has been enhancing its entire rewards perks section since the Great Recession.
  • American Express fades. American Express, long the leader in rewards, had the smallest increase in rewards spending with a 36% growth during the period of 2010-2017. With the loss of their deal with wholesale retailer Costco, American Express is offering more lucrative rewards on all its other cards.
  • Citibank triples rewards spending. Citibank has the highest percentage increase in spending since 2010 (333%). Citi won the Costco deal and has also been busy launching its own rewards products, including Citi Double Cash (which can pay up to 2% cash back) and its suite of Thank You products.

Great News for Consumers — But What About Credit Card Issuers?

The best rewards credit cards have lucrative sign-on bonuses and rich ongoing rewards structures. But is this sustainable? And can the credit card companies make money?

MagnifyMoney conducted a national survey of people who opened credit cards in the last year. The results demonstrate that there is a method to the strategies being deployed by the largest issuers: it is a great way to create a loyal customer base.

  • 44.5% of the people surveyed said they opened their accounts because of a sign-on bonus.
  • But 85.4% of the people surveyed said that the ongoing features and benefits of the product were most important in their decision.
  • Only 6.7% of the people surveyed said that they planned to cancel or close a card that they opened in the last year.
  • Only 3.7% of people go from credit card offer to credit card offer for sign-up bonuses.

The results might seem counterintuitive.

However, former credit card executive and MagnifyMoney co-founder Nick Clements explains:

The purpose of a sign-on bonus is to encourage people to act. Most people do not wake up in the morning wanting to open a credit card — and a sign-on bonus is a way for a credit card company to encourage people to reconsider their options. It is no different from a sale in a traditional department store. But what really matters to consumers, as these results reveal, is the ongoing value proposition. People don’t particularly enjoy shopping for credit cards, and they tend to stay put once they do shift. The smartest credit card issuers are luring consumers with a big incentive (the sign-on bonus), and they are keeping them with strong ongoing value propositions.

Chase Sapphire Reserve was probably the most successful product launch in credit card history. And it worked because it hit every button. The massive sign-on bonus gave people a reason to apply for a card. But the ongoing reward proposition was perfectly designed for its target audience. Those customers are going to stick around and become long-term customers.

As our survey found, there are people who like to go from credit card offer to credit card offer. However, this is a small group (only 3.7%, according to the survey). And credit card companies are becoming much better at identifying and rejecting these consumers.

Methodology

Cost of Rewards

Cost of rewards is publicly disclosed by American Express, Discover, and Capital One. For the remaining issuers, MagnifyMoney estimated the cost of rewards. For the estimate:

  • Credit purchase volume is disclosed by the credit card companies. A simplifying 1.75% credit interchange rate was assumed to determine gross credit interchange.
  • Debit purchase volume was provided by the Nilson Report. Actual debit interchange rates were pulled from the Federal Reserve.
  • FDIC Call Reports for each institution were used to determine the net interchange rate across debit and credit.
  • The difference between gross interchange and net interchange was assumed to be the rewards spend.

Credit Card Usage Survey

MagnifyMoney hired Survata to perform a national online survey of 1,000 adults who opened a credit card in the last year (the screening question).

The post Credit Card Rewards More Than Doubled Since the Recession, New Study Shows appeared first on MagnifyMoney.

7 Hacks for Using American Express’ Membership Rewards Program

Here's how to make the most of your Membership Rewards.

[Disclosure: Our partners are mentioned below.]

There are a few different transferable points programs available, but over the years one of the most popular has always been American Express’ Membership Rewards program. The reason is because of the ample ways points can be used and the wide selection of credit cards that can help you earn points quickly. Let’s take a deeper look into how you can earn Membership Rewards points and the different ways you can receive ultimate value.

1. Transfer Points to Loyalty Partners

One of the best ways to receive maximum value for your Membership Rewards points is to transfer them to one of the many loyalty partners. There is a large selection of both hotels and airlines and each of the following partners will transfer 1-to-1 unless noted.

  • Aeromexico — 1-to-1.6
  • Air Canada (Aeroplan)
  • Air France/KLM (Flying Blue)
  • Alitalia
  • All Nippon Airways
  • Asia Miles
  • British Airways — 250-to-200
  • Delta Air Lines
  • El Al Israel Airlines — 1,000-to-20
  • Emirates
  • Etihad Airways
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • Iberia Plus — 250-to-200
  • JetBlue Airways — 250-to-200
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Virgin America — 200-to-100
  • Virgin Atlantic Airways
  • Choice Hotels
  • Hilton Hotels — 1-to-1.5
  • Starwood Hotels — 1,000-to-333

To get the most value out of each point, you could use them for one of the following redemptions.

All Nippon Airways From the United States to Japan

Until recently, the All Nippon Airways award chart was based on distances. That used to provide many sweet spots for award travel. Even though they have changed to a region based award chart, there are still some great deals. One of them is round-trip flights from the United States to Japan. You can fly round-trip in coach for just 40,000 miles during low season and business class for 75,000 miles, also in the low season.

All Nippon Airways From the United States to Asia Zone 2

You could use All Nippon Airways miles to fly round-trip from the United States to Asia Zone 2 for just 55,000 in coach or 100,000 in business class. Asia Zone 2 is classified as Vietnam, Singapore, Thailand, Myanmar, India, Indonesia and Malaysia.

Flying Blue From the Continental United States to Hawaii

A great use of Flying Blue miles is to fly round-trip from anywhere in the continental United States to Hawaii for just 30,000 miles.

Aeroplan From the United States to Oceania

Transferring Membership Award points to Aeroplan will allow you to use 90,000 miles to fly round-trip from the United States to Australia, New Zealand or anywhere in the South Pacific. You could make this trip for 80,000 United miles, but what makes using Aeroplan miles worth it is that they will allow you to make two stopovers before reaching your destination. That means you could fly to Tahiti and make stops in both Australia and New Zealand on the way.

British Airways From Miami to Lima, Peru

If hiking to Machu Picchu is on your bucket list, you might want to consider flying British Airways from Miami to Lima, Peru. Because British Airways has a distance-based award chart, the flight in coach is just 12,500 miles each way.

2. Buy Gift Cards

Another way to use your Membership Rewards is to receive gift cards from different restaurants, retailers and for travel. The value you receive will be anywhere from a half-cent to one cent per point.

3. Go Shopping

You could also use your points to shop online with certain retailers. Amazon.com, Bestbuy.com and Newegg.com offer 0.7 cents per point. Other partner retailers give you a half-cent per point in value.

4. Use American Express Travel or Airbnb

There are a few different ways you can use your points on travel beyond transferring them to partners. You can book airfare on American Express Travel for one cent per point. You could also book with Airbnb for 0.7 cents per point.

5. Enjoy Entertainment

If you want to redeem your points for concert tickets or for a Broadway show you can do so through Ticketmaster.com, AXS and Telecharge.com. The value is a half-cent per point.

6. Ride With Uber

You could also use your Membership Reward points to pay for Uber rides. You will receive one cent value per point used.

7. Get a Statement Credit

Finally, you could choose to use your points to receive a statement credit. However, by doing this, you will only receive 0.6 cents value per point.

Cards That Earn Membership Rewards Points

There are quite a few different credit cards that give you the opportunity to earn Membership Rewards points. Below you will find a few of our favorite cards.

Platinum Card from American Express

The Platinum Card from American Express has been one of the elite cards available for a few years. When you sign up you will receive 60,000 Membership Reward points after spending $5,000 in the first three months. You can then receive five points per dollar spent on flights and hotels when booked through the airline and by using American Express Travel. All other purchases will receive one point per dollar.

Earlier this year, the annual fee on the Platinum card increased from $450 to $550. This will put the card out of reach for many people. But before you discard the idea of adding it to your wallet, you should consider the travel benefits. Not only will you receive a $200 airline fee credit, which will pay for things like change fees or baggage fees, you also receive a $200 Uber credit. You will receive up to a $100 statement credit to cover the cost of either Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. In addition, you will receive Starwood Preferred Guest and Hilton Honors Gold status. Plus, the next time you travel, it will be in comfort. You will have access to the Delta Sky Club, Centurion Lounges, Airspace Lounges and a Priority Pass Select membership.

Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express

Another of the elite cards from American Express is the Premier Rewards Gold Card. When you sign up for this card, you receive 25,000 Membership Reward points after spending $2,000 in the first three months. You receive three points per dollar spent on any airfare purchased directly with airlines. You also receive two points per dollar spent at U.S. restaurants, gas stations and supermarkets. All other purchases will earn one point per dollar. There is a $195 annual fee, but it’s waived the first year. Other than the earnings potential, the other benefits can make the annual fee worthwhile to travelers. Each year you receive a $100 airline fee credit. You also receive two points per dollar when you book a hotel through the Hotel Collection. Plus, you receive a $75 hotel credit for qualifying charges.

Amex EveryDay Preferred

When you sign up for the Amex EveryDay Preferred card you receive 10,000 Membership Reward points after spending $1,000 in the first three months. When you use the card at U.S. supermarkets, you receive two points per dollar, on up to $6,000 in purchases each year, and one point per dollar on everything else. Also, if you use your card 20 or more times on purchases in a single billing period you’ll earn 20% extra points on those purchases minus returns and credits. Terms and limitations apply.

At the time of this writing, the EveryDay Preferred also offers a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months. After that, your APR will be a variable 13.74% to 23.74%, based on your creditworthiness and other factors. This card has an annual fee of $95.

If you don’t already have one of these cards keep in mind you’ll need excellent credit to qualify. You can see where your credit stands by getting your two free credit scores right here on Credit.com.

Image: AleksandarNakic

At publishing time, the Platinum Card from American Express, Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express and Amex EveryDay Preferred card are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for this card. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment. This content is not provided by the card issuer(s). Any opinions expressed are those of Credit.com alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer(s).

The post 7 Hacks for Using American Express’ Membership Rewards Program appeared first on Credit.com.

Capital One’s New Dining Credit Card: Should You Apply?

Here's a solid rewards card made for people who love food.

Capital One just launched a brand new cash-back credit card with a big focus on food. The Premier Dining Rewards From Capital One card offers cash back rewards for all transactions, with extra incentives for dining and grocery purchases. If you’re frequently spending at restaurants, bars and grocery stores to get your grub on, this card might be right for you.

What Perks Does the New Capital One Card Provide?

The new Premier Dining card is a cash back card with competitive rewards rates. Cardholders earn 3% cash back on all dining purchases, 2% cash back on groceries and 1% cash back on all other purchases. Cash back rewards are unlimited and have no expiration date, and they’re redeemed in the form of statement credits or checks.

Right now, Capital One is offering a $100 cash-back bonus when you spend $500 in the first three months of becoming a cardmember, which should be pretty easy to do if you’re frequently dining out.

The card comes with a number of other benefits. There are 24/7 concierge services to assist with travel bookings, reservations and shopping. Capital One even provides travel perks that can include free room upgrades and early check-in or late check-out times at eligible hotels.

Plus, they cover up to $1,500 in travel reimbursements if your trip is cancelled or cut short, and they provide price protection for eligible items if you find a lower price within 60 days of the date of purchase.

What Will the Card Cost Me?

The Premier Dining card has no annual fee. The annual percentage rate (APR) on purchases and balance transfers is a variable 15.24%, 20.24% or 24.24% based on creditworthiness. There’s also no balance transfer fee or foreign transaction fee.

It should be noted that this card is intended for people with excellent credit, so if you don’t know where your credit stands, you’ll want to check before applying. You can get your two free credit scores, updated every 14 days, here on Credit.com.

Consumers who can qualify for the lowest available APR will be getting a decent interest rate.

Why Should You Apply for This Card?

If the majority of your credit card spending occurs at bars, restaurants and grocery stores, this card is a great option. While we’ve seen higher cash back rates on dining, they often apply to rotating spending categories that don’t last forever. The 3% cash back is a great permanent cash back rate for dining, and the 2% cash back for groceries is a decent supplement.

If you pay your balance off in full each month, this card will deliver its best value. There’s no annual fee, so if you can successfully avoid interest charges, you’re essentially earning money back on your purchases.

It’s also a good card for balance transfers and foreign transactions, as both will incur no additional fees.

Why Shouldn’t You Apply for This Card?

If you spend more on other purchase types than you do on dining and groceries, you may be leaving cash on the table by choosing this card. Many other cash-back rewards cards offer greater rewards for all purchases, and if your spending is more diverse, you’ll likely earn more by choosing a card with a better overall rewards rate.

You’ll also want to avoid this card if you’re looking for a great signup bonus. The $100 cash back bonus isn’t very exciting, and a consumer with excellent credit should be able to qualify for cards with far better signup offers.

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.

Image: gilaxia

The post Capital One’s New Dining Credit Card: Should You Apply? appeared first on Credit.com.

4 Credit Cards That Will Make You Feel Like a Millionaire

credit-cards-like-a-millionaire

When most people think about how the rich and famous travel, they probably picture first-class flights and penthouse suites. While this is usually true, that lifestyle doesn’t have to be strictly reserved for the one-percenters. By having the right piece of plastic in your wallet, you, too, could feel like a millionaire on your next vacation.

Keep in mind, a lot of these premium credit cards do come with a price — in the form of a high annual fee. That fee could be recouped via rewards and other benefits, depending on how you spend, but it’s important to do a cost-benefit analysis to determine if a particular credit card is right for you. It’s also important to note that rewards credit cards are best-served to those who don’t carry a balance, since your points can easily be lost to interest. Finally, anyone considering a new credit card should probably check their credit before applying since your credit scores will determine what kind of offers you will qualify for. (You can view two of your credit scores, updated every 14 days, for free on Credit.com.)

Here are four different cards for you to consider that could leave you feeling like a millionaire.

1. Chase Sapphire Reserve

Released earlier this year, the Chase Sapphire Reserve card has quickly become the “cool” credit card to have in your wallet. The card offers a signup bonus of 100,000 Ultimate Reward points (the equivalent of $1,500 when you redeem them through the bank’s travel portal) once you spend $4,000 in the first three months. That’s enough points to put you near the front of the plane on many different airlines.

In addition to a mega-signup bonus, the Chase Sapphire Reserve card has a very generous reward program. You’ll earn 3x the Chase Ultimate Reward points on restaurant and travel purchases and 1x on all other purchases.

If you want to really feel like a millionaire when you are traveling, then you will love that this card will also give you access to over 900 different airport lounges with a complimentary Priority Pass membership. Forgot about spending your layover sitting in cramped airport seats, now you can drink a cocktail while relaxing in a comfortable seating.

This card does come with $450 annual fee, but you will receive a $300 annual travel credit. Unlike some elite credit cards, this benefit can be used with more than just airlines. It can also be used on any purchases that Chase codes as a travel expense. The card carries an annual percentage rate (APR) between 16.24% and 23.24%, depending on your creditworthiness.

2. Platinum Card From American Express

Earning a lot of credit card points is nice, but what really makes someone feel exclusive, are the luxury benefits that come with the card. The Platinum card from American Express (see full review here) offers a concierge service, which will serve as your very own personal assistant. Looking to grab a reservation at a highly sought after restaurant? Want to experience private, invitation-only events, like the Kentucky Derby or a movie premier in an exotic location? You can do that as a Platinum cardholder.

In addition to these elite perks, you will be able to earn 40,000 American Express Membership Rewards points once you sign up and spend $3,000 within the first three months. When you use your card for travel purchases, you will earn 5x the Membership Rewards points. For all other purchases, you will earn 1x the points. Cardholders will receive a complimentary upgrade to Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status, as well as Hilton HHonors Gold. You will also have access to the American Express Fine Hotels and Resorts. When you book your hotel through this program, you can receive some great perks, including room upgrades, late checkout, daily breakfast for two, and a unique gift at each property that could be a $100 dining credit or a complimentary massage for two.

The annual fee is $450, but you will receive a $100 credit for either Global Entry or TSA Pre-Check and each calendar year you will receive a $200 airline credit. As a charge card, you’re expected to pay your balance off in full each month, so there’s no purchase APR.

3. American Express Delta Reserve Credit Card

If you travel frequently and want to improve your chances at being an airline elite, then the Delta Reserve Credit Card from American Express will give you a leg up. After you make your first purchase with the card, you will receive 10,000 Delta SkyMiles and 10,000 Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQM). Then each calendar year you will receive an additional 15,000 Delta SkyMiles and 15,000 MQM for each $30,000 you spend on your card.

When you become a Delta Medallion member, you will receive some great benefits, like complimentary upgrades to first class and upgrades for your travel companions when they are flying on a revenue ticket. In addition to Medallion benefits, the card will also provide you with priority boarding, your first checked bag free, Delta Sky Club access, and no foreign transaction fees. There is a $450 annual fee. The card carries a variable APR between 15.99% to 24.99%.

4. Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card

For a long time, Ritz-Carlton hotels have been known to be some of the more elegant places to stay around the world. When you sign up for the Ritz-Carlton Rewards credit card, you will have the opportunity to experience that elegance first-hand. You will receive three complimentary nights at any category 1-4 Ritz-Carlton after spending $5,000 in the first three months of being a cardholder. In addition, you will receive 10,000 bonus points when you add an authorized user and they make a purchase in the same three-month period.

As a cardholder, you will be able to upgrade to Club level three times per year when you are staying for seven or more nights. Anytime you stay for two or more nights, you will receive a $100 hotel credit. This can be used on dining, spa treatments, or any activity through the hotel. Cardholders will receive Ritz-Carlton Gold Elite status and if you spend $75,000 or more per year, you will be upgraded to Platinum Elite status. The card carries a variable APR between 16.24% and 23.24%.

There is a $450 annual fee, but you will receive a $300 annual travel credit, $100 credit towards Global Entry or TSA Pre-Check, and because this is a Visa Infinite card, you will also receive a $100 airfare discount when you purchase two or more airline tickets.

At publishing time, the Platinum Card from American Express is offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for this card. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.

Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.

Image: andresr

The post 4 Credit Cards That Will Make You Feel Like a Millionaire appeared first on Credit.com.