Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards 2019

Here are the best credit cards available right now from each card issuer. If you can’t find a specific card, there are even more here – thank you for using my links!

Chase

Chase personal cards

Ultimate Rewards cards

Chase Sapphire Preferred60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
• 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on travel & dining

• 1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on all other purchases
• $95 annual fee• $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• The best card for beginners• Compare it here

This is by far the best card to start with – and a solid workhorse for years now. 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points is worth $625 toward travel. And these points transfer 1:1 to travel partners like Hyatt, Southwest, and United.

Chase Sapphire Reserve50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on travel & dining

1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on all other purchases
• $450 annual fee• $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Why this is my favorite card for travel and dining• Compare it here

The hefty annual fee is offset by a $300 annual travel credit, Priority Pass lounge membership, $100 Global Entry credit, and 3X bonus points on travel and dining. The sign-up bonus is worth $750 toward travel. And it’s the card I use most – top of wallet every day! A top pick for peeps who like to dine and travel. Check it out here.

Chase Freedom15,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
• $0 annual fee• $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Excellent rotating 5X categories every quarter
• A great first Chase card
• Compare it here

This card has NO annual fee and rotating quarterly 5X bonus categories, which have included restaurants, Amazon shopping, gas, and mobile payments. If you make the most of it, you can earn an extra 30,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per year. If you like the bonus categories, it’s a must-have card to keep year after year.

Chase Freedom Unlimited3% cash back on all purchases in your first year on up to $20,000 spent
That's up to 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the promotional offer!
• $0 annual feeAfter, earn unlimited 1.5% cashback on all purchases
• Great for everyday spending• Compare it here

The strength of this card is its simplicity: 1.5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on every purchase. You can’t beat that return for a card with NO annual fee. If you want something easy and free to keep, this card pairs amazingly with other Chase Ultimate Rewards cards. Compare it here.

Airline cards

Chase United Explorer40,000 United miles
• 2 United miles per $1 spent on United purchases, at restaurants, and on hotel stays

• $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck

• 1st checked back free when you pay for your ticket with the card

• 2 United Club lounge passes per cardmember year
• $95 annual fee, waived the first year• $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open
• Compare it here

I’ve had the Chase United Explorer card for years. You get priority boarding, a free checked bag domestically when you use the card to pay for your ticket, 2 United Club lounge passes per year, primary car rental coverage, and $100 toward Global Entry. Totally totally worth it.

Chase Southwest Plus40,000 Southwest points
• 3,000 Southwest points after your Cardmember anniversary.

2 Southwest points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partner purchases
• $69 annual fee• $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Points earned count toward the Southwest Companion Pass• Compare it here

This card has the lowest annual fee of the Southwest personal cards. And you get 3,000 Southwest points each year upon renewal. That’s worth ~$42 toward Southwest flights, which helps offset the annual fee.

Chase Southwest Premier40,000 Southwest points
• 6,000 Southwest points after your Cardmember anniversary

2 Southwest points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partner purchases
• $99 annual fee• $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Points earned count toward the Southwest Companion Pass• Compare it here

The 6,000 Southwest points you get upon card renewal are worth ~$84 toward Southwest flights. It’s usually a better deal, especially when the sign-up bonus is big!

Chase Southwest Priority40,000 Southwest points
• 7,500 Southwest points after your Cardmember anniversary

2 Southwest points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partner purchases

$75 Southwest travel credit each year

• 4 upgraded boardings per year (if space is available)
• $149 annual fee• $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Points earned count toward the Southwest Companion Pass• Compare it here

If you love Southwest, there’s no question this card is the best. The 7,500 Southwest points you get upon card renewal are worth ~$105 toward Southwest flights AND you get $75 toward Southwest flights each year – which more than covers the annual fee.

Hotel cards

Chase World of HyattUp to 50,000 Hyatt points
• 9 Hyatt points per $1 spent at Hyatt - 4 bonus points for paying with your card, and 5 bonus points for being a World of Hyatt member

• 2 Hyatt points per $1 spent restaurants, on airlines tickets purchased directly from the airlines, on local transit and commuting and on fitness club and gym memberships

• Receive 1 free night every year after your cardmember anniversary at any Category 1 to 4 Hyatt hotel or resort
• $95 annual fee• Earn 25,000 Hyatt points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening

• Plus an additional 25,000 Hyatt points after you spend a total of $6,000 on purchases within the first 6 months of account opening
• 5 Hyatt hotels where the annual free night rocks• Compare it here

60,000 Hyatt points is enough for 2 stays at the most luxurious Hyatt hotels in the world, 3 nights at an all-inclusive in Puerto Vallarta, or several nights at a lower-tier Hyatt hotel. The free night you get every year easily justifies the annual fee. One of my favorite hotel cards, especially if you like Hyatt hotels. Remember, award nights count toward elite status!

Chase IHG Premier80,000 IHG points
• $89 annual fee• 80,000 IHG points after spending $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Compare it here

The annual free night and 4th night free on award stays makes this card a forever keeper, even with the annual fee. Plus, 80,000 IHG points is enough for a couple nights at the best IHG hotels. This card is great to get for the sign-up bonus and keep for the free night every year, especially if you like IHG hotels – one of the biggest hotel chains in the world.

Chase Marriott Bonvoy Boundless75,000 Marriott points
• $95 annual fee, waived the first year• $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Compare it here

In addition to 75,000 Marriott points, you also get a free night worth up to 35,000 Marriott points each year, and credits toward elite status. The world’s biggest hotel chain. Plus, you can transfer 60,000 Marriott points to 25,000 airline miles for award flights on dozens of airlines. Here’s more information.

Chase small business cards

Chase Ink Business Preferred80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
• 3 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites, and search engines each account anniversary year

• 1 Chase Ultimate Rewards point per $1 on all other purchases

• Bonus is worth $1,000 toward travel booked through Chase
• $95 annual fee• The minimum spending requirement is $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Amazing small biz card with best-ever offer right now• Compare it here

Amazing dealbest-ever offer! 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth $1,000 toward free travel. Plus, you’ll earn 3X Chase points on travel, internet, cable, phone service, and shipping purchases on up to $150,000 in spending per cardmember year. If you’re a small business owner, this deal can be worth $1,000s toward a vacation!

Chase Ink Business Cash50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
• 5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year

2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year
• $0 annual fee• $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Excellent 5X categories and best-ever offer right now• Compare it here

The sign-up bonus of 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points is worth $500 toward travel – that’s an awesome deal for a card with NO annual fee. Plus, you earn 5X Chase points and office supply stores, and on internet, cable, and phone service on up to $25,000 in spending per cardmember year. This is a stellar deal for a card that’s free to get and keep!

Chase Ink Business Unlimited50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points
• 1.5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all purchases with no cap
• $0 annual fee• $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Compare it here

A flat 1.5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on every purchase. Plus a sign-up offer worth $500 toward travel and NO annual fee. If you want an easy small business card, look no further.

Chase Southwest Premier Small Business60,000 Southwest points
• 6,000 Southwest points after your Cardmember anniversary

2 Southwest points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partner purchases
• $99 annual fee• $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Points earned count toward the Southwest Companion Pass• Compare it here

American Express

Amex personal cards

Membership Rewards

The Platinum Card® from American Express60,000 Amex Membership Rewards points
• $200 annual airline incidental credit
• $200 in Uber credits annually
• 5X points on flights and travel booked through Amex
• Access to the fantastic Centurion Lounges, Delta SkyClubs, and Priority Pass network
• Terms apply
• $550 annual fee• $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Learn more here

THE ultimate card for travelers. Unparalleled lounge access, more credits than the cost of the annual fee, 5X Amex points on airfare, and the list of perks goes on and on. If you want to travel in style this always has been the one card to have with you.

American Express® Gold Card35,000 Amex Membership Rewards points
• 4X Amex points on dining at restaurants worldwide
• 4X Amex points on up to $25,000 per year at grocery stores
• 3X Amex points on airfare booked directly or travel booked through Amex
• $100 airline incidental credit per calendar year
• Terms apply
• $250 annual fee• $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
• Learn more here

Hotels

Hilton personal cardsNo Annual FeeAscendAspire
Welcome offer75,000 Hilton points125,000 Hilton points150,000 Hilton points
Minimum spending$1,000 in purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership$2,000 total$4,000 in purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership
Annual fee$0$95$450
Earning- 7X at Hilton

- 5X at US restaurants, US gas stations, and US supermarkets

- 3X on other purchases
- 12X at Hilton

- 6X at US restaurants, US gas stations, and US supermarkets

- 3X on other purchases
- 14X at Hilton

- 7X on on flights, select car rentals, and US restaurants

- 3X on other purchases
Notes- Hilton Silver elite status- Hilton Gold elite status

- Free weekend night when you spend $15,000 in a calendar year
- Hilton Diamond elite status

- Free weekend night every cardmember year

- $250 in resort credits and $250 toward airline incidentals each cardmember year

- Free Priority Pass Select membership
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I love Hilton hotels. And your love of their hotels should determine which level is best for you. If you’re a casual traveler, or just want a welcome bonus, go for the no annual fee card. Then work your way up. The Ascend comes with Gold elite status (free breakfast!) and the Aspire card comes with Diamond elite status (guaranteed Executive Lounge access) and $300 to use at Hilton resorts each year.

Amex small business cards

Membership Rewards

The Business Platinum® Card from American ExpressEarn up to 75,000 Amex Membership Rewards points
• $595 annual fee• Earn 50,000 points after you spend $10,000 within your first 3 months of Card Membership
• Earn an extra 25,000 points after you spend an additional $10,000 all on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership
• Get 35% of your redeemed points back from an airline of your choosing, and any First of Business Class flights you redeem points for
• $200 annual airline incidental credit
• 5X points on flights and travel booked through Amex
• Access to the fantastic Centurion Lounges, Delta SkyClubs, and Priority Pass network

• Learn more here

Earn 5X Amex points on airfare and access to the entire lounge network. If you have a small business and don’t care for the credits, this is a cost-effective way to travel in style AND save some cash. 😎

Blue Business Plus Credit Card
15,000 Amex Membership Rewards points
2X Amex Membership Rewards points on all purchases on up to $50,000 in spending per calendar year
• No bonus categories to think about or activate and NO annual fee
• Can transfer the points you earn to Amex travel partners
• $0 annual fee• $5,000 in eligible purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership
• This is by far the best card for 2X points on all spending• Learn more here

Earn 2X Amex points on up to $50,000 in spending per calendar year. Boom – it doesn’t any simpler than this. I put all my non-bonus spending on this card. There’s NO annual fee so it’s free to get and keep. Plus, it won’t count toward your Chase 5/24 status. This card is an MVP and a workhorse if there ever was one!

Hotels

Hilton Small Business Amex125,000 Hilton points
• $95 annual fee• $3,000 in eligible purchases in the first 3 months of Card Membership
• 12X at Hilton
• 6X at US gas stations, wireless phone service from US providers, US shipping purchases, US restaurants, flights, and select car rentals
• 3X on other purchases
• Hilton Gold elite status
• Does NOT count toward Chase 5/24
• Learn more here

This is a brand new card, so everyone can earn the welcome bonus here. Similar to the Ascend personal card, but in small business form. Slightly different bonus categories, but worthwhile for a nice boost of 125,000 Hilton points.


Capital One

Capital One personal cards

Capital One Venture50,000 Venture miles
• $95 annual fee, waived the 1st year• $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
It doesn't get much simpler to earn and redeem points than this• Learn more here

The signup bonus is worth $500 toward travel. And you earn 2X miles on every purchase with no bonus categories to think about. The annual fee is waived the 1st year, so you can earn a nice bonus and see how you like the card for a whole year. Very easy to use points for travel purchases.

Capital One Savor$300 Cash
• 4% cashback on dining and entertainment

• 2% cashback at grocery stores

• Free Postmates membership through December 2019

• No limit to how much you can earn
• $95 annual fee, waived the first year• $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening
• Learn more here

The bonus categories here are surprisingly broad and lucrative. If you like to dine or get out of the house, you should take a look at this card. Plus, the signup bonus is $500 – you can’t beat that!

Capital One small business cards

Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business$500 Cash
• $95 annual fee, waived the 1st year• $500 cash bonus when you spend $4,500 in the first 3 months of opening your account
• Earn an unlimited 2% cashback on every purchase
• No limits on how much you can earn
• Learn more here

You can earn $500 in cold hard cash with this single sign-up bonus!

Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business50,000 miles ($500 toward travel)
• Limited time offer
• $95 annual fee, waived the 1st year• 50,000 miles - equal to $500 in travel - once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening
• Earn an unlimited 2X miles on every purchase
• No limits on how much you can earn
• Learn more here

This card offers 50,000 Spark miles, which are transferable to 37,000 airline miles with 12 different programs.


Elan

Elan personal cards

Fidelity Visa$100 cash
• No annual fee• $1,000 on purchases within 90 days from account opening
The best cashback card out there• Learn more here

I’ve had this card for years. There’s NO annual fee and earns a flat 2% cashback on every purchase. You just can’t get any better than this card if you want dead simple rewards.


Thank you for using my links to get a new travel rewards, business, or cashback card!

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Comments

  1. Okay so don’t know if you can respond to this or not. I had the Founders card for 2016 and the main benefit I used was the Total Rewards for Diamond status. Well I renewed for 2017 but when I tried to update my status on Total Rewards for 2017 it stated I had already used this option and it would not allow me to do it. I contacted Founders card and they were not very helpful. They did refund some of my money for the card but kept $100. I didn’t think that was fair but was happy to get back what I did. Has anyone else had this experience.
    thanks,
    Steve

    • The same thing happened to me. They told me the benefit is set to auto-renew and that’s why it says you’ve already redeemed it.

      They also said it takes a week or two for Caesars to update your account online. Because it’s already March, it might’ve already happened. But if not, I’d say give it a couple more weeks and you should be good to go. Hope that helps!

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