Top 3 Flexible Travel and Rewards Credit Cards for Individuals

Top 3 Flexible Travel and Rewards Credit Cards for Individuals

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a neat card with its bright blue color and noticeable weight, as well as for its its point earning capabilities.  The Sapphire Preferred accrues 2X Sapphire points on restaurants and travel (including subways, cabs, and trains).

Key features are as follows:

Note that the Chase Ink Preferred Card, the business version of this card, is essentially the same card but provides a sign up bonus of 80,000 points.  Applying for that card with your social security number as your EIN may also be worth considering. 

American Express® Premier Rewards Gold Card

The Amex Premier Rewards Gold Card has strong reward categories and good transfer partners, including British Airways and Singapore Airlines, and sometimes offers a transfer bonus to British Airways.  This card however offers 3x points on travel spend, 2x points on supermarkets and gas station spend, and purchase protection (up to $1,000). 

Key features include:

Note that a business version of this card often provides 75,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $5,000 during your first three months of card membership.  Applying for that card with your social security number as your EIN may be something that you will want to do in addition to, or instead of, applying for this card, especially as Amex's rules allow you to reapply for the business card every two years.

The Barclaycard® Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard® (Card Is No Longer Offered to New Cardholders as of April 2018)

The Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard is different from other point earning cards in that the points are not transferrable to any airline or hotel chain to redeem for airfare or free nights.  Rather, the points accrue in your Barclaycard account at a rate of 2x per dollar spent and can be used to wipe out (pay for) for any travel-related expense over $25 within the previous 120 days just by logging in your account online.  Some travel categories provide a 10% discount upon redemption; hence, this card produces between 2% and 2.20% in value per dollar spent.  While greater value can be achieved with other cards, this Barclayscard is in fact the most flexible of the flexible travel and rewards credit cards.  An additional important feature of this card is Chip-and-PIN capability which is particularly valuable if you are using the card in Europe where automated most automated vending machines now require the technology (leaving those without it to wait on long lines).  

Key features are as follows:

  • Earn 40,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 with the card in the first 90 days of card membership - that is enough to redeem for a $400 travel statement credit.
  • Earn 2X points on all purchases.
  • Points don't expire as long as your account is open, active and in good standing.
  • Chip card for increased confidence and convenience to pay abroad as easily as you do at home.
  • Book the travel you want — airfare, hotels, cruises and more and earn miles on your purchase.
  • Get 10% points back to use toward your next redemption every time you redeem for travel statement credits.
  • No foreign transaction fees on anything you buy while in another country.
  • Complimentary online FICO® Score access for Barclaycard Arrival cardmembers.
  • Introductory Annual Fee of $0 for the first year; $89 thereafter.

Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are those of the author, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any bank advertiser, card issuer, airline or hotel.

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