If you love to travel, you know that the right credit card can make a big difference in your experience, from airport lounge access to travel protections.
A good travel credit card can allow you to earn rewards that you can use towards free travel.
Whether you are looking for rewards on flights, hotels, rental cars, or all of the above, we have researched and compared various travel credit cards to help you find the one that is right for you.
Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
Best All-Around Travel Card
The Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card 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 an easy-to-use travel credit of up to $300 back annually as statement credits for Bookings via 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.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Best Beginner Travel Card
- 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
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.
The Platinum Card® from American Express
Best for Airport Lounge Access
The The Platinum Card® from American Express (review) is a great premium travel rewards card for travelers who want airport lounge access, including Centurion Lounges, Delta Sky Clubs (when flying Delta), Escape Lounges, Priority Pass lounges.
The American Express Platinum has a $695 annual fee, but you receive many annual statement credits when you enroll your card to offset the fee, including:
- $200 Airline Fee Credit: Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Card.
- $200 Hotel Credit: Get up to $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
- $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 in statement credits each month when you pay for eligible purchases with the Platinum Card® at your choice of one or more of the following providers: Disney+, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The Wall Street Journal. Enrollment required.
- $200 Uber Cash Credit: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Benefit renews annually.
- $155 Walmart+ Credit: Use your Platinum Card® to pay for a monthly Walmart+ membership (subject to auto-renewal) and receive a statement credit that covers the full cost each month.
- $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: Breeze through security with CLEAR® Plus at 45+ airports nationwide and get up to $189 back per year on your membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Platinum Card®.
You also earn 5x Membership Rewards points when booking flights directly with airlines or with American Express Travel (up to $500,000 in purchases per calendar year) and 5x Membership Rewards points when booking prepaid hotels with American Express Travel.
On top of that, you automatically earn Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite and Hilton Honors Gold statuses, which offer points bonuses, room upgrades, late check-out, and other premier benefits.
Best No-Annual Fee Travel Card
- Pay Rent Without Fees and Earn 1 Point Per Dollar on Rent (up to 50,000 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
Bilt Mastercard® 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.
Business Platinum Card® from American Express
Best for Business Travel
The The Business Platinum Card® from American Express (review) is an outstanding choice for business owners who want airport lounge access including the American Express Global Lounge Collection, Centurion Lounges, Delta Sky Clubs, Escape Lounges, Priority Pass lounges, and more.
The Business Platinum card also offers several statement credits to offset the $695 annual fee:
- $200 Airline Fee: Annual airline fee credit of up to $200 on charges by the airline you select per calendar year.
- $400 Dell: Annual statement credit on all U.S. Dell purchases, up to $200 semiannually.
- $120 Wireless Phone Services: Annual statement credits for purchases made directly with any U.S. wireless telephone provider, up to $10 per month.
- $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: Breeze through security with CLEAR® Plus at 45+ airports nationwide and get up to $189 back per year on your membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Business Platinum Card.
- Global Entry or TSA PreCheck: Statement credits for Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85) every four years (4.5 years for PreCheck).
You can also earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, and 1.5x points on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else, on up to $2 million of these purchases per calendar year
The American Express Business Platinum comes with automatic Hilton Honors Gold and Marriott Bonvoy Gold so that you can enjoy perks like room upgrades, late check-out, and a points bonus.
Additionally, the points you earn can be transferred to several Amex transfer partners such as Air Canada Aeroplan, Delta SkyMiles, and Marriott Bonvoy. This potentially increases the value of your points depending on how you redeem them.
Citi Premier® Card
Best for Earning Points
- 3x Points at Restaurants, Supermarkets, Gas Stations, Air Travel, and Other Hotels.
- $100 Off a Single $500 Hotel Stay Per Year
- Extended Warranty and Purchase Protections
- $95 Annual Fee
The Citi Premier® Card is the best card for earning points because it offers 3x points at:
The Premier card also comes with no foreign transaction fees, purchase protection, and an extended warranty for items purchased, adding an additional 24 months to the manufacturer’s warranty.
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Best for Luxury Travel
- $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
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® (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.