11 Best Credits Cards for Car Rentals

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Having the right credit card can save you a lot on your next car rental. Many cards offer free rental car insurance when you pay for the rental with that card. 

The best cards offer primary rental car insurance, which pays for any damage to the rental car before your insurance kicks in. But you still need to maintain liability insurance for damage to other vehicles.

Some cards, such as the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card (review), offers extra points plus rental car elite status.

We’ve got a lot to cover, so let’s dive right in.

Best for Premium Travel: Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card (review)

Best for Beginner Travelers: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (review)

Best for E-commerce Businesses: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card (review)

Rental Car Insurance
Photo: Hertz

1. Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

Best for Lounge Access (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
  • bonus_miles_full
  • $300 Annual Credit for Bookings through Capital One Travel
  • 10,000 Miles for Each Account Anniversary
  • Hertz President’s Circle Elite Status
  • Airport Lounge Access (Priority Pass, Capital One, & Plaza Premium)
  • 10X Miles on Hotels and Rental Cars, and 5x Miles on Flights Booked with Capital One Travel
  • 2X Miles on All Other purchases
  • $395 Annual Fee
Learn More Our Review

The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card (review) is a premium travel rewards card that’s perfect for travelers who want outstanding travel perks like annual travel credits, worldwide airport lounge access, and travel and purchase protections. 

The Venture X earns 2x miles on all purchases helping you maximize every dollar of your spending. Plus, you can earn 10x miles on hotels and rental cars, and 5x miles on flights booked through Capital One.

The card has a $395 annual fee, completely offset by a $300 annual credit for bookings through Capital One Travel, and 10,000 points (worth at least $100) for each account anniversary.

Plus, you get airport lounge access via Priority Pass, Capital One, and Plaza Premium Lounges, Hertz President’s Circle elite status, Global Entry or TSA PreCheck credit, rental car insurance, trip and luggage insurance, cell phone insurance, and purchase protection.

2. Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Best for Travel Insurance (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

card_name

  • bonus_miles_full
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit
  • 10x Points on Hotels and Rental Cars and 5x Points on Flights Booked Through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 3x Points on Dining, Takeout, & Eligible Food Delivery
  • 50% More Redemption Value
  • Priority Pass Airport Lounge Access
  • Trip Delay and Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • Primary Rental Car Insurance
  • $550 Annual Fee

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The card_name (review) is a great option for travelers who want premium perks such as airport lounge access and top-tier travel protections.

The Sapphire Reserve has a $550 annual fee, but you receive an annual easy-to use $300 travel credit and access to 1,300+ Priority Pass airport lounges.

Plus, great benefits such as trip delay insurance, primary rental car insurance, trip cancellation insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, purchase and return protection, extended warranty, and no foreign transaction fees.

Cardmembers also earn extra points with:

  • 5x points on flights and 10x points on hotels and car rentals through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • 3x points on travel.
  • 3x points on dining, and food delivery purchases.
  • 1x points everywhere else.

One thing to remember is that you won’t earn points on your first $300 in travel purchases each cardmember year since the $300 travel credit covers those purchases.

You can also cash out points at a 50% bonus (1.5 cents per point) when redeeming points towards travel or transfer the points to Chase’s airline and hotel partners.

3. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Best for Beginner Travelers (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

Best Starter Travel Card
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
  • bonus_miles_full
  • 5x Points on Travel Booked Via Chase
  • 3x Points on Dining and Eligible Delivery Services
  • 2x Points on All Other Travel Purchases
  • 10% Anniversary Points Boost
  • Trip Delay and Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • Primary Rental Car Insurance
  • $95 Annual Fee

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (review) is one of the best rewards cards for travelers who want solid earning rates for travel and dining expenses. 

For only $95 per year, this card earns 5x Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, 3x points on dining, online groceries, and streaming services, and 2x on all other travel purchases

Cardholders will also get a 10% anniversary points bonus, a 12-month DoorDash DashPass subscription when activated by December 31, 2024, and a $50 anniversary hotel statement credit. 

Plus, it provides extensive travel protections, including trip delay, primary rental car, baggage, and purchase protection plans. 

4. Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

Best for E-commerce Businesses (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
  • bonus_miles_full
  • 3X Points on Travel, Shipping, Advertising (Social Media and Search Engines), Internet, Cable, and Phone on the First $150,000 Each Account Year
  • 25% Additional Points Value in Travel Redemption
  • Primary Rental Car Insurance
  • Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance
  • Cell Phone Protection
  • Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
  • $95 Annual Fee

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card (review)  is an excellent choice for business owners looking for a card that offers valuable rewards and benefits.

With this card, you’ll earn:

  • 3 points per $1 spent on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable, phone services, and advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines (up to $150,000 in combined purchases per account anniversary year).
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases, with no limit on the number of points you can earn.

Beyond the rewards, the Ink Business Preferred provides valuable benefits, including:

  • Primary rental car insurance (when renting for business purposes).
  • Cell phone protection (up to $600 per claim against theft or damage, with a maximum of three claims per year and a $100 deductible per claim).
  • Purchase and extended warranty protection.

5. Bilt Mastercard®

Best for Rent (w/ Primary Rental Car Insurance)

No Annual Fee
Bilt Mastercard®
  • Pay Rent Without Fees and Earn 1 Point Per Dollar on Rent (up to 100,000 Points Per Calendar Year)
  • No Annual Fee
  • 3x Points on Dining
  • 2x Points on Travel
  • Transfer Rewards to Airlines and Hotels
  • Cell Phone, Primary Rental Car, and Trip Delay Insurance
Learn More Our Review

Bilt Mastercard® (review) is a no-annual-fee credit card that allows you to pay rent without a transaction fee and earn 1 point per dollar on rent (up to 50,000 points per calendar year).

You also earn 3x points on dining, 2x points on travel, and 1x points everywhere else.

The Bilt Rewards card also has great benefits for a no-annual fee card, including cell phone insurance, primary rental car insurance, 90-day purchase protection, trip delay insurance, trip cancellation insurance, and no foreign transaction fees. 

Plus, you can transfer your points to airline and hotel partners such as United Airlines, American Airlines, and World of Hyatt. Or redeem the points for travel or at Amazon.

6. United℠ Explorer Card

Best for United Purchases (w/ Primary Rental Car Insurance)

2 United Club One-Time Passes Plus Free Checked Bags
United℠ Explorer Card
  • bonus_miles_full
  • 2X Miles on United Purchases, Dining, and Hotel Stays
  • 2 United Club One-Time Passes Per Year
  • Free First Checked Bags for Two People
  • Up to $100 Global Entry, TSA PreCheck, or Nexus Credit
  • 25% Savings on United In-Flight Food and Drinks
  • Priority Boarding
  • Primary Rental Car and Trip Delay Insurance
  • $0 Intro Annual Fee, Then $95 Per Year

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The card_name (review) is one of my favorite cards to keep long-term because of the great benefits when flying United, including:

  • Free first checked bag when you pay using the Explorer card;
  • Two free United Club passes each account anniversary;
  • Priority boarding for you and companions on the same reservation; 
  • Extra award space when redeeming your United miles;
  • 25% back as a statement credit on purchases of food, beverages, and Wi-Fi on United; and
  • Premier upgrades on award tickets.

Even if you’re not a frequent United flyer, the money-saving perks and travel benefits of this card can still make it a worthwhile choice.

Besides the airline-specific benefits, the United Explorer card offers purchase protection, extended warranty, and trip cancellation/interruption insurance, providing peace of mind while traveling.

7. United℠ Business Card

Best for Business Travelers (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

card_name

  • bonus_miles_full
  • 2X Miles for United Airlines, Dining, Gas Stations, Office Supply Stores, Local Transit, and Commuting
  • 2 United Club One-Time Passes Per Year
  • $100 United Travel Credit
  • Free First Checked Bag and Priority Boarding
  • Primary Rental Car Insurance
  • Trip Delay and Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The United℠ Business Card offers nice perks on United Airlines, including:

  • Two United Club lounge passes annually;
  • Priority boarding for you and your companions;
  • Free first checked bag for you and one companion on the same reservation;
  • 25% back on in-flight purchases in the form of statement credits;
  • $100 Annual Travel Credit if you make at least seven United flight travel-related purchases, each totaling at least $100;
  • Anniversary bonus of 5,000 miles;
  • Premier upgrades on award tickets; 
  • Expanded award availability; and
  • Ability to earn Premier Qualifying Points for United elite status with spending.

8. Ink Business Cash® Credit Card

Best for Office Expenses (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

Ink Business Cash® Credit Card
  • bonus_miles_full
  • 5% Cash Back at Office Supply Stores, Internet, Cable, and Phone Services up to $25,000 Each Account Year
  • 2% Cash Back at Gas Stations and Restaurants Up to $25,000 Each Account Year
  • Primary Rental Car Insurance
  • Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty
  • No Annual Fee

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The Ink Business Cash® Credit Card (review) is a no annual fee card offering:

  • 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.
  • 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year.
  • 1% cash back on all other purchases.

The card also offers nice benefits such as primary rental car insurance (when renting for business purposes), 120-day purchase protection, and extended warranty protection.

9. Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Best for Simple Rewards (w/ Secondary Rental Car Insurance)

No Annual Fee

card_name

  • bonus_miles_full
  • 5% Cash Back on Travel Purchased Via Chase
  • 3% Cash Back at Restaurants and Drug Stores
  • 1.5% Cash Back on All Other Purchases
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 Months (After that, a reg_apr,reg_apr_type APR.)
  • Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty
  • No Annual Fee

Click Here to Learn How to Apply

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® (review) is a good no-annual fee credit card option that offers 5% cash back on travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3% cash back at restaurants, takeout, eligible delivery services, and on drugstore purchases. Plus it offers 1.5% cash back on all other eligible purchases.

The card also offers nice benefits such as purchase protection, extended warranty, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, and secondary rental car insurance.

10. Capital One Spark Miles for Business

Best for Daily Business Expenses (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

2x Miles on All Purchases
Capital One Spark Miles for Business
  • bonus_miles_full
  • Unlimited 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
  • 2x Miles On Every Purchase
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Credit
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
  • $0 Intro Annual Fee for the First Year, $95 Thereafter
  • Free employee cards which also earn unlimited 2X miles from their purchases
Learn More Our Review

The Capital One Spark Miles for Business (review)is one of the top travel rewards credit cards for small business owners.

The card earns unlimited 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. It also earns unlimited 2 miles per dollar on all purchases, which can be transferred to Capital One’s airline and hotel partners.

The Spark Miles also offers a statement credit for your Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application (up to $100) and no foreign transaction fees.

11. Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Best Budget Travel Card (w/ Primary Car Rental Insurance)

2x Miles on Everyday Spending
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
  • bonus_miles_full
  • 5x Miles on Hotels and Rental Cars via Capital One Travel
  • 2x Miles Everywhere Else
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre-Check Credit
  • Hertz 5-Star Elite Status
  • Rental Car Insurance and Extended Warranty
  • $95 Annual Fee
Learn How to Apply Our Review

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card (review) is a travel rewards credit card that earns an unlimited 2 miles per dollar on all purchases and 5 miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.

The card also comes with a range of travel benefits, including secondary rental car, no foreign transaction fees, and extended warranty coverage.

Plus, you also get two complimentary passes to visit Capital One lounges each year and an application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck (up to a $100 credit every four years).

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