Feed Me Miles & Points!  Here Are the Best Credit Cards for Restaurants

Best Credit Cards for Restaurants

Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Premium Travel Rewards:   Chase Sapphire Reserve
Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Beginning Travelers:   Chase Sapphire Preferred
Best Credit Card for Restaurants That Earns Citi ThankYou Points:   Citi ThankYou Premier
Best Credit Card for Restaurants If You Love Hilton Hotels:   Hilton Honors Ascend Card from American Express
Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Cash Back:   Barclays Uber Visa Card
Best Credit Card for Restaurants Overseas:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Best Credit Card for Restaurants If You Spend a Lot at Costco:  Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
Best Credit Card for Fast Food and Cash Back:   US Bank Cash+
Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Gas Stations:   Chase AARP Card

Best Credit Card for Restaurants in the US and Overseas with No Annual Fee:  Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card
Best Business Credit Card for Cash Back on Business Meals:  SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express
Best Business Credit Card for US Restaurants with No Annual Fee:   Chase Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Best Business Credit Card for Restaurants and Earning Travel Rewards:   Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express

Lots of folks love to dine out.  Aside from it being a great way to avoid doing any dishes, you can earn easy bonus rewards just by paying for your meal with the right credit card.
The information for the Chase AARP Card has been collected independently by Million Mile Secrets.  The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
I Love Earning Travel Rewards by Using the Right Card to Pay for Meals for Friends and Family!
The best card to use for restaurant spending depends on your goals.  For example, some folks (like me) prefer to earn flexible miles & points, which add up quickly and help you save money on travel.  Others like to earn straightforward cash back, which equates to getting a discount on every meal!
Here’s a list of the 13 best credit cards to use at restaurants!
Best Credit Cards for Dining
You can earn bonus rewards with the below cards for your restaurant spending all of the time.  Certain cards not on the list (like the Chase Freedom) sometimes include restaurants as part of rotating quarterly bonus categories.  We’ll be sure to let you know when that’s the case!
If you want to continuously earn bonus miles, points, or cash back when dining out without the hassle of monitoring quarterly bonus categories, consider using these cards!
And keep in mind, restaurant spending is a broad bonus spending category.  For example, purchases at many bars & nightclubs that serve food will often count as a restaurant purchase, even if you only order drinks.  And coffee shops typically code as restaurants, too!
That said, because of Chase’s stricter approval rules, we almost always suggest getting any Chase cards you want first.  Chase will NOT approve you for most of their cards if you’ve opened 5+ cards from any bank (NOT counting Chase business cards and certain other business cards) in the past 24 months.

But if you qualify for a business card, you could consider any of the small business cards on the list.  Because they will NOT appear on your personal credit report and hinder your ability to be approved for any great Chase offers in the future.
Just remember, it’s crucial to stay organized when you’re in the miles & points hobby.  Because if you don’t pay your bills on time and in full every month, any interest you accrue will likely negate any rewards you earn. 
You can use sites like MyBankrate to check your credit.  But your credit score isn’t the only factor banks consider when evaluating credit card applications.  They also look at income and financial stability.  And the decision to approve you or not is always ultimately up to the bank!
Top Travel Rewards Cards for Restaurants
1.   Chase Sapphire Reserve
Apply Here:   Chase Sapphire Reserve
Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve

Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders earn 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 on dining purchases.  These are my favorite type of flexible points!  Because you can transfer them directly to airline and hotel partners like Hyatt and United Airlines to book Big Travel with Small Money.
This is the reason this is our top pick for anyone looking to earn travel rewards with a premium credit card.
It’s also the reason the Sapphire Reserve is one of the cards I use almost everywhere I go.  I love earning easy and valuable bonus points for dining out!  And the card has no foreign transaction fees.  So you can earn bonus points without paying more for your meal when traveling overseas.
I Was Recently in Portugal, and Let Me Tell You…the Food Was Absolutely Amazing! I Paid for This Delicious Meal of Portuguese Favorites, Like Fava Beans, Mushrooms and Chorizo, Cod Cakes, and Wine With My Chase Sapphire Reserve. And Earned 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards Points per $1!
When you apply, you’ll earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.  You can redeem the welcome bonus for $500 in cash back or $750 in travel by booking airfare, hotel stays, or car rentals through Chase’s travel portal (no blackout dates).
The card has a $450 annual fee, which is NOT waived the first year.  But for many folks, the annual fee is worth paying because the $300 credit each account anniversary year for travel purchases effectively makes the annual fee $150 ($450 annual fee – $300 travel credit).
There are lots of other perks, which you can read about in our full review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve.
2.   Chase Sapphire Preferred
Apply Here:   Chase Sapphire Preferred
Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the #1 card we recommend for beginners in the miles & points hobby.  And with it, you’ll earn 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points with no foreign transaction fees at restaurants and bars (that code as restaurants!).
Million Mile Secrets team member Scott loves to use his Chase Sapphire Preferred while in Europe and the Caribbean.  With almost every purchase, he’s working towards his next (free!) vacation!
Cheers to Earning 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards Points and Saving on Foreign Transaction Fees!

When you apply for the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you’ll earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of opening your account.

You can redeem the bonus for $500 in cash back or $625 in travel when you book through the Chase portal.  And get potentially more value if you transfer points directly to airline and hotel partners like Singapore Airlines.
The card’s $95 annual fee is waived the first year.  So you can keep the card open for ~10 months and then decide if the card is worth the annual fee.
3.   Citi ThankYou® Premier Card
Apply Here:   Citi ThankYou Premier
Read our review of the Citi ThankYou Premier

You can earn 2X Citi ThankYou points per $1 you spend on dining by paying with the Citi ThankYou Premier card.
Citi ThankYou points are flexible, which means there are many ways to redeem them!  For example, you can transfer points directly to airline partners like Singapore Airlines.  Then, book an award flight to Hawaii on Star Alliance partner United Airlines.
With the Citi ThankYou Premier card, you can earn 60,000 Citi ThankYou points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. 

Use Your Citi ThankYou Premier to Earn 2X ThankYou Points on Dining Purchases and Redeem Points for Vacations to Hawaii!
Plus, the $95 annual fee is waived the first year.
Just remember, you can’t earn the welcome bonus for any Citi credit card if you’ve either opened or closed a card of the same “brand” in the past 24 months.  So if you’ve opened or closed a Citi ThankYou Premier, Citi Prestige (no longer available to new applicants), or Citi ThankYou Preferred card in the past 24 months, you’re not eligible for the bonus on the Citi ThankYou Premier.
4.   Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card
Apply Here:   Apply for the Hilton Honors Ascend Card from American Express
Read our review of the AMEX Hilton Honors Ascend Card

 
With the AMEX Hilton Honors Ascend card, you’ll earn 6 Hilton points per $1 of eligible purchases at US restaurants.  So if you like earning and using Hilton points, this card would be your best option for restaurant spending!
For example, if you spend $500 per month dining out, you can earn 36,000 Hilton points ($500 X 12 months X 6 points per $1) per year just by using the AMEX Hilton Ascend card.
Earning 6 Hilton Points per $1 at US Restaurants Can Really Add Up!
Hilton points are generally worth ~0.5 cents each.  So 36,000 points is worth ~$180 (36,000 Hilton points X 0.5 cents).  But, you can get more value out of your points depending on how you use them!
The card’s $95 annual fee is NOT waived the first year.  But card’s perks can easily offset the annual fee.
When you apply for the Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card, you’ll earn 125,000 Hilton points after spending $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.
You can read our full review of the AMEX Hilton Honors Ascend card here.
Note:   The welcome bonus offer for this card is not available to folks who have or have had this product or the Hilton Honors Surpass Card (no longer available to new applicants).
Top Cash Back Cards for Restaurants
1.   Barclays Uber Visa
Read our review of the Barclays Uber Card
Folks with the no-annual-fee Barclays Uber Visa Card earn 4% back for dining purchases.  That’s a great return for a card with no annual fee.
And the card has no foreign transaction fees.  So you can earn bonus rewards dining abroad without paying pesky international fees.
Remember, the points you earn with this card are worth 1 cent each and can be redeemed for Uber, cash back, or gift cards.  You must redeem at least 500 points at a time for Uber credits, or 2,500 points for cash back and gift cards.
Earn 4% Back on Dining With the BarclaysUber Visa Card and Redeem Points to Save Money on Uber Rides or Get Straightforward Cash Back
The Barclays Uber credit card comes with a 10,000 point welcome bonus (worth $100) after spending $500 within the first 90 days of account opening.  Here’s our full review of the Barclays Uber Visa!
2.   Capital One Savor
Apply Here:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Read our review of the Capital One Savor Card

Capital One Savor cardholders earn unlimited 4% cash back on dining.  And redeeming the cash back you earn is easy.  You can request a check or statement credit, any time, with no minimum redemption amount.
And when you apply for the Capital One Savor card, you’ll earn $500 cash bonus after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.
Use the Capital One Savor $500 Cash Bonus to Splurge on a Fancy Meal at a Restaurant Like Angel Oak in Santa Barbara! Or Just Use the Card to Pay and Earn 4% Cash Back!
This card has a $95 annual fee that is waived for the first year AND no foreign transaction fees.
But if you’re just starting out in miles & points, and plan to apply for lots of cards later, the Capital One Savor card is NOT the best card for you.  Because there are other credit cards with much higher welcome bonuses that earn more valuable points and have better travel benefits.
3.   Citi Costco Visa    
Apply Here:   Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
Read our review of the Citi Costco Visa Card
If you spend a lot at restaurants and happen to be a Costco fan, too, this card could make sense for you.  Especially if gas is one of your top monthly expenses.
With the Citi Costco Visa, you can earn 3% cash back at restaurants & bars worldwide.  Plus you’ll earn 4% cash back on on the first $7,000 of purchases each annual reward period (1% thereafter) of gasoline at Costco and gas stations worldwide (excluding superstores, supermarkets, convenience stores, and warehouse clubs other than Costco).
Make Your Restaurant Purchases More Rewarding by Earning 3% Cash Back With the Citi Costco Visa Card!
The only drawback is you can only redeem your cash back rewards as a check once per year.  So if you cancel the card for any reason before receiving the cash back, you’ll lose all the rewards you’ve earned.  And some folks prefer the option to redeem cash back rewards at the end of each billing cycle.
This card has no annual fee if you have a paid Costco membership.  And Citi cards offer perks like Citi Price Rewind, purchase protection, and extended warranties.  Check out our full review of the Citi Costco card for more details.
4.   US Bank Cash+
Apply Here:   US Bank Cash+
Link:   US Bank Cash+ Categories
Each quarter, with the US Bank Cash+ card, you can choose one 2% cash back category (gas stations, groceries, or restaurants) and pick two 5% cash back categories.  So if you dine out frequently, you could earn cash for those purchases by choosing restaurants as your 2% category.
With the US Bank Cash+ Card You Can Earn Bonus Cash Back at Participating Fast Food Joints!
Plus, there are lots of 5% cash back categories, including fast food.  So you can earn 5% back at merchants like Chipotle, Panera Bread, Starbucks, and Cold Stone Creamery!  But the 5% cash back you earn is limited to up to $2,000 in spending.  You can check the merchant examples for other qualifying purchases.
With the US Bank Cash+ card, you can earn a $150 cash back bonus after making $500 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.  The card has no annual fee.  But it DOES charge foreign transaction fees, so it’s not a good choice when traveling abroad.
5.   Chase AARP
Apply Here:   Chase AARP Card
Read our review of the Chase AARP Card
The Chase AARP card earns unlimited 3% cash back at restaurants (and gas stations!), and 1% cash back on everything else.  It has no annual fee.  And you don’t have to be an AARP member to apply for the card!
Plus, you’ll earn an intro bonus of $100 in cash back rewards after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening your account.
This could be a very good deal for folks who want to earn cash back without paying an annual fee.  Especially if you spend a lot on dining.
Good Food Is That Much Better When You Know You’re Earning Cash Back for Your Meal!
That said, Chase offers lots of the best best travel credit cards out there, many of which offer bigger welcome bonuses.  So you should apply for any other Chase cards you might want first!  Because you don’t want to be affected by their strict application rules.
6.   Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card
Apply Here:   Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card
Read our review of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card

The AMEX Wells Fargo Propel card is a good choice for folks looking to earn cash back on dining, either in the US or while abroad.
That’s because this no annual fee card doesn’t charge ANY foreign transaction fees.  And it earns 3 points per $1 spent on dining.
Cheers to Earning Bonus Points at Restaurants With the No Annual Fee AMEX Wells Fargo Propel Card
The AMEX Wells Fargo Propel card also comes with a 30,000 bonus point (worth $300 in cash back, travel, gift cards, or other rewards) welcome bonus after spending $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of card opening.
And the card also comes with:

3 points per $1 spent on travel purchases (flights, hotels, homestays, and car rentals)
3 points per $1 spent on eating out and ordering in
3 points per $1 spent on gas stations, rideshares, and transit
3 points per $1 spent on eligible streaming services, like Apple Music, Hulu, and Netflix
1 point per $1 for all other purchases
Cell phone insurance (up to $600 per claim with a $25 deductible)
NO foreign transaction fees
NO annual fee

Those are great perks for a no annual fee card!
In addition, your points are worth 1 cent each when you redeem them for rewards like cash back, travel, or gift cards.  And if you have the Wells Fargo Visa® Signature® Card, you can redeem your points for 1.5 cents each toward airfare through the Wells Fargo portal.  Meaning you’ll effectively get 4.5% back toward airfare for purchases like travel, dining, and at gas stations (3X points X 1.5 cents each)!
The information related to the Wells Fargo Visa Signature Card has been collected by Million Mile Secrets and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product or service.
Top Business Cards for Restaurants
1.   AMEX SimplyCash Plus
Apply Here:   SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

With the no-annual-fee AMEX SimplyCash Plus card, you can earn 3% cash back (up to $50,000 in purchases per calendar year) at US restaurants.  But you must select US restaurants as your 3% cash back bonus category.
While You’re Closing Deals, Be Sure to Earn 3% Cash Back on Business Lunches by Paying With the AMEX SimplyCash Plus Card!
Also, there’s no welcome bonus, and the card charges foreign transaction fees.
But AMEX small business cards do NOT appear on your personal credit report.  So they won’t hurt your chances of getting more Chase cards.
2.   Chase Ink Cash
Apply Here:   Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Read our review of the Chase Ink Cash Card

Folks with the no-annual-fee Chase Ink Business Cash card earn 2% (2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points) at restaurants (on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year).
On their own, the points you earn from the Ink Business Cash are only worth 1 cent each for cash back or towards travel.  
But your points are worth much more and give you flexibility when you also have certain Chase Ultimate Rewards cards, like the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, Chase Sapphire Preferred, or Chase Sapphire Reserve.  Because you can combine your points and transfer them directly to Chase’s terrific travel partners.
Earn 2X Points on Restaurant Spending With the Ink Business Cash. Then, Combine Points With Another Eligible Chase Card to Transfer Points Directly Hotel Partners Like Hyatt to Book Free Stays at the Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos in Mexico!
When you apply for the Ink Business Cash, you’ll earn $500 (50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points) after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.  This is the highest offer we’ve ever seen on this card!  So if you’re considering it, now is the time to apply.  Because we don’t know when the deal will end!
The card also has a 5X bonus spending category.  You can read our full review of the Ink Business Cash for more details!
3.   AMEX Premier Rewards Gold 
Apply Here:   Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express
Read our review of the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold Card

AMEX Membership Rewards points are handy because you can transfer them directly to 19 airline and hotel partners to book award travel.
With the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold card, you can earn 2X AMEX Membership Rewards points on purchases at US restaurants.  Cardholders also get access to AMEX Offers, which sometimes include discounts at nearby restaurants.  So you can earn bonus points and save money at the same time!
Always Remember to Check Your AMEX Offers to See If You Can Save Money When Dining Out!
When you apply for the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold card, you can earn 25,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of opening your account. 

The card’s $195 annual fee is waived the first year.
Bottom Line
Earning easy bonus miles, points, or cash back on restaurant purchases is a sweet treat!
The best card to use at restaurants depends on your goals.  Some folks (like me) prefer to earn flexible miles & points, which can go toward getting Big Travel with Small Money.  But earning straightforward cash back isn’t bad either!
Here’s a summary of the best cards for restaurant spending by category:

Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Premium Travel Rewards:   Chase Sapphire Reserve
Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Beginning Travelers:   Chase Sapphire Preferred
Best Credit Card for Restaurants That Earns Citi ThankYou Points:   Citi ThankYou Premier
Best Credit Card for Restaurants If You Love Hilton Hotels:   Hilton Honors Ascend Card from American Express
Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Cash Back:    Barclays Uber Visa Card
Best Credit Card for Restaurants If You Spend a Lot at Costco:  Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
Best Credit Card for Fast Food and Cash Back:   US Bank Cash+
Best Credit Card for Restaurants and Gas Stations:   Chase AARP Card

Best Credit Card for Restaurants in the US and Overseas with No Annual Fee:  Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card
Best Business Credit Card for Cash Back on Business Meals:   AMEX SimplyCash Plus
Best Business Credit Card for US Restaurants with No Annual Fee:   Chase Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Best Business Credit Card for Restaurants and Earning Travel Rewards:   Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express

Which card do you use when dining out?  Let me know in the comments!

We Reveal Our 6 Expert Tips to Travel Easier & Save Money

The talented team here at Million Mile Secrets has gone on hundreds (if not thousands!) of flights over the years, and traveling is our passion.  We’ve gone to US National Parks, Southeast Asia, flown on Southwest Airlines, and on Singapore Airlines First Class.  Here are some of our favorite tips for easier, faster travel.
I Love Having a Stash of Points to Book Flights for My Mom
6 Tips to Travel Easier & Save Money
1.   Build up a stash of points for airline travel.
Airfare usually makes up the biggest cost of travel, so start building a stash of points that you can redeem for travel.  My favorite credit card for newbies starting to collect miles & points is the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.  You can earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $625 in travel when you redeem through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal — with no blackout dates!
I Flew to Hawaii for Just $22 By Using Points I Earned From Credit Cards
2.   Get TSA PreCheck or Global Entry
Just knowing that I don’t have to take off my shoes and laptop takes a big load off my shoulders (especially now that I have to carry around a baby)!  These credit cards will reimburse the cost of Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.
I Can Usually Fly Through Security With TSA PreCheck
3.   If you regularly check luggage, get a credit card that gives you free checked bags
Now that I have a family, I have to travel with more things, which means more checked luggage.  I’m a huge Southwest Airlines fan, so I usually don’t have to worry about paying extra baggage fees.  If you travel a lot (more than 2-3x per year) and regularly pay for luggage, then it might make sense to get a credit card that gives you 1 free checked bag.
Don’t Pay for Bags If You Don’t Have To
4.   Lounge access isn’t just for business travelers
I love having the option to escape into a lounge if I’ll be waiting in the airport for more than ~30 minutes.  There are several credit cards that include lounge access.  Airline lounges are usually stocked with coffee, tea, soda, and juice.  At some lounges, you can get small meals of soup or sandwiches.  The American Airlines lounge has served fresh guacamole & chips for guests, and is experimenting with made to order crepes as well.  And usually the Wi-Fi is much better than what you’ll get outside of the lounge.
Kids and Adults Both Love to Relax in Lounges Between Flights
5.  If you have a regular travel partner, get the Southwest Companion Pass — the best deal in travel!
If you have a friend or family member that you regularly travel with, consider getting the Southwest Companion Pass.  I’ve saved thousands of dollars in travel over the last several years with this perk.  My partner and I have taken a family trip to San Diego, an anniversary trip to Costa Rica, and many more trips around the US to visit family and friends.
6.   International travelers should use a credit card that doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees.
Many credit cards can charge up to ~3% extra for using them overseas.  Even if you take just 1 trip a year overseas, having a credit card that doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees will save you money.
If you liked this post, make sure you never miss valuable travel news and tips by signing up for our email newsletter (it’s FREE)!

September 2018: The 10 Best Travel Credit Card Offers

Check out our carefully researched list of the best credit cards for travel and cash back.  With the best credit card offers right now you can earn $1,000s worth of luxury travel or flights!  Or if you prefer cash back, we found an offer worth $800!
I Used Points From My Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card to Fly Business Class to Europe and Explore Morskie Oko in the Tatra Mountains
Seeking the Best Credit Cards for Travel?
Here at Million Mile Secrets we constantly track down the best credit card rewards for you.  We reveal the real deals and toss away the junk.  And we’ll tell you which credit cards we use personally!  For instance, I love using 3 of the credit cards below.  I’ll tell you which!
Best Credit Card Offers

Best Business Credit Card:   Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Best Travel Credit Card:   Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Best Citi Travel Credit Card Bonus (Worth $750+):   Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

Best Southwest Airlines Bonus (Worth $900): Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card

Best Business Credit Card With No Annual Fee + 5% Categories:   Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Best Business Credit Card With No Annual Fee + 1.5% Cash Back Everywhere:   Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
Best Credit Card for Simple Travel Rewards:   Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Best Cash Back Credit Card for Restaurants & Entertainment:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Best American Airlines Business Card:   CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®

Best Travel Credit Card for Premium Rewards:   Chase Sapphire Reserve®

How We Select the Best Credit Cards for Travel
You know how you get credit card offers in the mail and throw them away?  Not us!  We open them all, excitedly run to get our magnifying glass, and read the fine print!  And we spend all day looking for new credit card offers online.  Then we dive in to calculate the true value of the offer.
We let you in on the secrets that the airlines, hotels, and cruise ship companies do NOT want you to know! 
Credit card intro bonuses are the fastest way to earn big travel rewards WITHOUT spending a ton of money.  But here’s the thing — you have to know the smart ways to use these bonuses.  That’s how we help you.  We make it easy.
I Used Credit Card Travel Points to Stay at This Hotel in Europe!
We examine the…
Bonus Offer:   Credit card companies profit each time you use their card and when you pay them interest (so pay those bills on time!)  Like any business, they want more customers.  So they create offers where you can earn a serious stash of miles or cash when you first open your new card.  Some bonuses are VERY appealing — while others are not!  We sort it all out for you.
Minimum Spending Requirement:   Here’s the “catch.”  To earn the intro bonus, you must spend a certain amount using your new card within a certain time frame.  We like reasonable spending requirements that make it easy to get your bonus.  We do list cards with bigger requirements but ONLY if the reward is huge.
We love seeing how regular people like you get to travel First Class, stay in amazing hotels, or earn lots of cash using our insider tips.   For example, our reader Lori is an English teacher who took a $30,000+ trip to Asia for only $500.  Like me, she’s a big fan of the Chase Sapphire Preferred card.  And she took it on her epic adventure to Thailand, Vietnam, and Hong Kong.  (You can see all our Reader Success Stories here.)
Ongoing Bonus Opportunities:   We prefer travel credit cards that KEEP rewarding you, even after you earn the initial big welcome bonus.
Benefits:   Airport lounges with complimentary food and alcohol, no foreign transaction fees, and TSA PreCheck are some of my favorite perks that save money AND time.
Did You Know? With Just a Single Credit Card Intro Bonus Your Can Get Earn $1,000s Worth of Free (and Fancy!) Travel
Million Mile Secrets readers and team members make the most of the best credit card offers to get Big Travel with Small Money.  And redeem miles & points to travel cheaply to destinations like Disney World, Europe, Japan, New Zealand, and many others!
Want to see what it’s like when you master the Million Mile Secrets?  Here is a video of team member Keith:

Always wear your seat belt and always be responsible with credit!  If you’re new to rewards credit cards, be sure to read our post with myths associated with applying for new cards.  Many folks are pleasantly surprised to discover it’s possible to keep 20+ credit cards open AND maintain an excellent credit score!  This is my exact situation.  My score is still excellent because I always pay my bills on time.
And remember, you shouldn’t necessarily shy away from credit cards with annual fees.  Many of the best credit card offers have annual fees, but terrific ongoing perks (like annual travel credits!) that can easily offset the expense!  When I first started out, I really didn’t like the idea of an annual fee.  So I started out with no annual fee cards like Ink Business Cash.  But now I do the math to decide when a “premium” card is worth it.
Best Business Credit Card:   Chase Ink Business Preferred

Apply here:   Chase Ink Business Preferred
Or read our full review of the Chase Ink Business Preferred

 

The Official Offer:   Earn 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
And that means?  This is a fantastic sign-up bonus and a big reason why the Chase Ink Business Preferred is our #1 pick!
Team member Keith used it to book a Business Class award flight to New Zealand worth more than $4,000!
If you like cash back, the 80,000-point bonus offer is $800.
And there is a useful option in between simple cash back and awesome award flights.  You can use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points in the Chase Travel Portal (it looks and works just like Expedia or Orbitz) to quickly book travel with no blackout dates.  Your Chase Ultimate Rewards points with the Chase Ink Business Preferred are worth 1.25 cents each instead of 1 cent each.  So the bonus brings you $1,000 worth of airfare, hotel stays, car rentals, and more.
Note:   I’ve found flights to cost the same as when I book on other travel sites.  Hotel stays are also usually very close in price.  For car rentals, shop around.  But the Chase portal does often have the best price too.
But tell me more about that $4,000 flight:   With the Chase Ink Business Preferred card you can send your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to travel partners.  For example, you can move your 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to become 80,000 United Airlines miles or 80,000 Hyatt hotel points.
So what does that all mean exactly?  Well… 60,000 United Airlines miles is enough for a one-way Business Class flight to Europe from the US.  60,000 United Airlines miles is also enough for a round-trip flight to Europe in economy class.  You’ll be earning Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all your spending.  So as you stack points, you get closer to your dream trip.
Medieval Dunluce Castle in Northern Ireland — Or as I Prefer to Call It, House Greyjoy From Game of Thrones! Experience Europe by Using Chase Points Instead of Cash to Fly There

Another cool thing is just because you move your points to United Airlines does NOT mean you have to fly on United Airlines!  United Airlines lets you use their miles to fly on their cousin airlines in the Star Alliance such as Air New Zealand, SWISS, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways, and more!

Ongoing Earning Potential:

3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points for every $1 you spend on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites, and search engines (up to a maximum of $150,000 in combined purchases per account anniversary year)
1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all other purchases

Examples of what counts as “travel” and earns triple Chase points:
Toll bridges & highways
Parking lots & garages
Airlines (including tickets, baggage fees, change fees, etc.)
Hotels, Motels, Timeshares, Campgrounds
Vacation rentals like Airbnb
Car rental agencies
Cruise lines
Travel agencies
Discount travel sites like Travelocity and Expedia
Trains like Amtrak, subway, and metro tickets
Buses like city bus tickets, Greyhound, Megabus
Taxis, Limos, Ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft
Ferries
Using Your Points:   You’ve got 3 great options.
1.   Transfer to Chase’s terrific travel partners like British Airways, United Airlines, Southwest, Hyatt, Marriott (which is connected to Starwood), Singapore Airlines, and more!
2.   Use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points in their travel portal.  This is quick and easy.
3.   Cash back.
Perks:
Cell Phone Protection:   You get up to $600 per claim in cell phone protection against covered theft or damage for you and your employees listed on your monthly cell phone bill when you pay it with your Chase Ink Business Preferred credit card.   There are a maximum of 3 claims in a 12 month period with a $100 deductible per claim.
The cell phone insurance perk actually works!  Team member Keith filed a claim online and received an $85 reimbursement after he paid to replace his shattered iPhone screen.

Extended Warranty:   When you buy items with your Chase Ink Business Preferred, they add 1 extra year when the warranty is 3 years or less.
Note:  The extended warranty protection is up to the amount charged to your card less shipping and handling fees, with a maximum of $10,000, and no more than $50,000 per calendar year.
Rental Car Insurance:   Cardholders are covered when you rent a car with your card and decline the car rental agency’s collision damage waiver.
Rental car insurance is primary when renting for business purposes in your country of residence or outside of the country.  Otherwise, this coverage is secondary.  You’d be shocked at what they try to charge you for a minor ding or scrape.  This built-in insurance can save you a lot of money and headaches.
Baggage Coverage:   If your baggage is delayed for more than 6 hours, you could be reimbursed for emergency purchases of essential items (i.e. clothing, toiletries, cell phone charging cables, and more)
You can get up to $100 per day for a maximum of 5 days.
Lost Luggage:   This benefit covers the cost to repair or replace lost luggage and personal items inside.  You can be reimbursed up to $3,000 per person each trip with a limit of $500 for items such as jewelry and electronics.
Trip Delay Protection:   If your trip is delayed for more than 12 hours, you could be reimbursed for up to $500 per ticket for reasonable expenses (meals, lodging, toiletries, medication, and other personal use items).
No Foreign Transaction Fee:  I refuse to use any credit card outside that US the hits you with an international fee.  The Chase Ink Business Preferred doesn’t do that to you.
Employee Cards at No Additional Cost:   By adding employee cards to your account, you can set individual employee spending limits for greater control and earn rewards faster.

Do you qualify?   This is a small business credit card but you might qualify without realizing it.  You can apply with your social security number as a sole proprietor of a for-profit business.  Check our step-by-step guide to completing a Chase business card application.
Note:   Chase will NOT approve you for their Ultimate Rewards points earning cards if you’ve opened 5 or more credit card accounts (from any bank) in the past 24 months (NOT counting Chase business cards and these other business cards).  So be sure to get the Chase credit cards you want before you’re over the limit.

Is the Chase Ink Business Preferred Worth the Annual Fee?   Yes.  It’s $95 for all the above.  It’s a no-brainer.
Chase Ink Business Preferred Bottom Line:   You can’t go wrong with this card.  It’s impossible.  In the absolute worst case, you earn the sign-up bonus and take home $800 minus the annual fee.  Best case, you are flying to your dream destinations and sleeping on 1,000-thread-count sheets at luxury hotels.
Apply here:   Chase Ink Business Preferred
Best Travel Credit Card:   Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Apply here:   Chase Sapphire Preferred
Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the #1 card we recommend for beginners in the miles & points hobby.  I’ve had this credit card for many years and I take it on all my trips.
The Official Offer:   When you sign-up, you’ll earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of opening your account.
Yeah, and that means?
To get big-time travel, you want to book what’s known as an “award flight.”  You can transfer your Chase points to various airline partner loyalty programs at a 1:1 ratio.  One Chase point will convert to one partner airline mile.  For example:
You’ll have at least 54,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points (because you earn points on the $4,000 minimum spend too).  Here are just a few of your many options:

60,000 United Airlines miles to fly round-trip to Europe
60,000 United Airlines miles to fly Business Class one-way to Europe or 70,000 miles to fly on their partner airlines (Whoa.  That would cost ~$4,000 if you paid cash!)  I just did this maneuver.  I had a stash of 140,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points built-up from sign-up bonuses and regular spending.  And I moved them to United Airlines.  And that gave me access to United Airlines’ cousin airlines to fly Business Class round-trip to Europe.
35,000 United Airlines miles to fly round-trip to the Caribbean or Central America.  Meghan on our team did this to save $700+ on a fun last-minute trip to explore beautiful Belize!

Or you can redeem the sign-up bonus for $500 in cash back or $625 in travel when you book through the Chase Travel Portal.  You’ll get potentially much more value if you transfer points directly to airline and hotel partners, like Hyatt.
Hyatt Is One of Our Favorite Chase Transfer Partners Because You Can Redeem Points for Free Nights Even at Their Most Luxurious Hotels, Like the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa!

Ongoing Earning Potential:

2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on travel and dining
1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all other purchases

I Count Points, Not Calories! With My Chase Sapphire Preferred, I Deliciously Earned Double Chase Points (and a Double Chin) for Eating Nutella French Toast
Examples of what counts as “travel” and earns 2X Chase points:
Toll bridges & highways (this is how folks in New York City earn millions of miles, ha!)
Parking lots & garages
Airlines (including tickets, baggage fees, change fees, etc.)
Hotels, Motels, Timeshares, Campgrounds
Vacation rentals like Airbnb (I’ve earned double points everywhere from Cancun to Krakow this way)
Car rental agencies
Cruise lines
Travel agencies
Discount travel sites like Travelocity and Expedia
Trains like Amtrak, subway, and metro tickets
Buses like city bus tickets, Greyhound, Megabus
Taxis, Limos, Ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft (double points to the airport!)
Ferries (random travel tip: Ferry from Helsinki to Tallinn in Estonia to experience their Old Town)
Using Your Points:   You’ve got 3 incredible options.
1.   Transfer to Chase’s terrific travel partners like British Airways, United Airlines, Southwest, Hyatt, Marriott (which is connected to Starwood), Singapore Airlines, and more!
2.   Use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points in their travel portal.  This is quick and easy.
3.   Cash back.
Options 2 and 3 are super simple and satisfying.
Option 1 takes a bit of learning but results in amazing experiences — the kind that give you a feeling of sticking it to “the man” and feeling superior over all your former friends who you are now too cool to associate with.
Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfer at a 1:1 ratio directly to the following airlines:

Singapore Airlines (This is how you fly to Australia in First Class in an actual bed)
Aer Lingus (Ireland!)
British Airways (This is the secret to cheap flights to Hawaii from the West Coast and cheap flights within Europe and Asia)
United Airlines (This is how I fly to Europe.  And I don’t fly on United Airlines, I use their partners)
Flying Blue (KLM & Air France)
Iberia
Southwest (No blackout dates + 2 free checked bags)
Virgin Atlantic
JetBlue (No blackout dates + the most legroom in coach)

And they transfer to these hotel programs:

Hyatt (the BEST use of your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for hotels.  This is how I stayed at the Hyatt Zilara all-inclusive on the beach for $0 per night instead of $500 per night.  I was very happy sipping margaritas while in the pool that overlooked the ocean)
Ritz-Carlton
Marriott
IHG (they have brands you know like InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Staybridge Suites, and Holiday Inn)

Using My Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, I Got a Free Business Class Flight to Europe This Summer!
Perks:
Primary car rental insurance: Covers damage due to theft or collision to your rental car, when you pay for the rental with your card.
Trip delay reimbursement: Get up to $500 back per ticket when your trip is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay for expenses such as meals and lodging (because they may not reimburse you for your usual snack of Beluga caviar, stick to the store-brand caviar)
Extended Warranty Protection: Extends the time period of the US manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of 3 years or less
Baggage Delay Insurance: Reimburses you for essential purchases like toiletries and clothing for baggage delays over 6 hours by passenger carrier up to $100 a day for 5 days.  (So when the airline stinks, you don’t have to.)
When you’re approved, be sure to read the full details in the Guide to Benefits.
No foreign transaction fee:  Hooray!  That’s why I take my Chase Sapphire Preferred everywhere I travel.  It’s a Visa credit card so it’s accepted just about anyplace and there are no nonsense international fees.
On the Beaches of Mexico, I Had No Problemo (That’s Spanish) Using My Chase Sapphire Preferred to Earn 2X Points at Restaurants With No Foreign Transaction Fees
Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Worth the Annual Fee:   The $95 annual fee is waived the first year, which means you can use the card for free for ~11 months.  Then, decide if you like the benefits enough to pay the annual fee.  I’ve paid this fee year after year, because for me, it’s totally worth it.  (If you do decide to cancel, it’s seriously hassle-free.)

Do you qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred ?  
Chase has the final say.  Here are guidelines:
You have the best chance of being approved when you have excellent credit.  Your score is likely high enough if it’s 750+.  I wouldn’t recommend applying if your score is below 725, although you never know.
There are other factors Chase will use to determine if they want to allow you to have this metal credit card.  They may consider your income, your banking relationship with them, etc.  Again, this is Chase’s card and they make the final determination on whether or not to let you have it.
That said, they created this card and bonus for a reason.  So don’t be shy!  When I was approved for my Chase Sapphire Preferred I had an 800 credit score (still do) and a middle class income.
Important:
If you’re in one of these 2 categories, you very likely will NOT be approved for the Chase Sapphire Preferred:
1. You have opened 5+ new credit cards from any bank within the past 24 months.  But wait, this does NOT count small business cards from American Express, Bank of America, Chase, Citi, and Wells Fargo.
2. You already have a Chase Sapphire Preferred OR a Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Bottom Line:   This is our #1 pick for people who are beginners to travel credit cards and airline miles and points.  This was my first “premium” travel credit card and I still have it and use it to this day.
Apply here:   Chase Sapphire Preferred
Best Citi Travel Credit Card Bonus:   Citi ThankYou Premier Card

Apply here:  Citi ThankYou® Premier Card
Or read our full review of the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

The Official Offer:  Earn 60,000 Citi ThankYou points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.  That’s the highest offer we’ve ever seen for this premium credit card!  I have this credit card.  I got it when the bonus offer was lower and it was a very good deal even then!
And 60,000 Citi points means what exactly?

With 50,000 Citi ThankYou Points, You Can Fly Internationally in a Business Class Bed on Delta, Be Served a High Quality Meal, and Wash It Down With a Nice Selection of Adult Beverages
You’ll get $750 worth of travel using your 60,000 Citi points on their travel booking site.  Or you can stretch the points to be worth even more by transferring your points to Citi’s partner airlines!
Here are just a few examples of fun travel you can do with 60,000 Citi ThankYou points:

Fly round-trip to Hawaii on United Airlines by transferring your Citi points to United’s partner, Singapore Airlines (we show you how to do these lucrative tricks!)
Fly one-way in Business Class to Europe or Japan by transferring 50,000 Citi points to Etihad
3 round-trip flights to London from Boston, New York, Newark, or Washington, DC, during off-peak season by transferring your Citi points to Virgin Atlantic
Fly one-way in super comfortable Delta One Business Class from Atlanta or Seattle to Tokyo by turning your 60,000 Citi points into Virgin Atlantic miles
Fly one-way in Delta One Business Class from Detroit to Paris by transferring 50,000 Citi points to Virgin Atlantic
3 round-trip flights between New York City and Vancouver on Cathay Pacific by moving your Citi points to Asia miles.  Or enjoy 1 round-trip flight in Cathay Pacific’s amazing Business Class on this route using just 50,000 of your Citi points

Team member Harlan has had success transferring his Citi ThankYou points to fly to Europe, fly his family to Hawaii, and more!
And Jasmin has flown with her kids from Vancouver to New York in Cathay Pacific Business Class and loved it!
Complimentary Wine and Wi-Fi Equals Airport Paradise!  Team Member Jasmin Flew Business Class Using Points.  She Took This Photo of the Cathay Pacific Lounge in Vancouver.  Remember, Not Only Do You Get the Business Class Seat/Bed, You Also Get Entrance to the Peaceful Business Class Airport Lounge With Food, Snacks, and Cocktails
If you don’t want to transfer your points, you can keep things dead simple instead… use your 60,000 Citi ThankYou points in the Citi ThankYou Travel Portal (it’s just like using Expedia and the prices almost always match).  You’ll get 25% off your flight! 
Because your points are worth 1.25 cents each there.  So your 60,000 points are worth $750.  If there’s a flight for sale, you can book it!  There are no blackout dates or other games like that.
I’ve used my Citi ThankYou points this way when I wanted a specific coach flight to Europe on a specific date.  It was super easy.

Ongoing Earning Potential:

3 Citi ThankYou points per $1 spent on travel including gas stations, airfare, hotels, car rental agencies, parking, tolls, and more
2 Citi ThankYou points per $1 spent at restaurants and on select entertainment like amusement parks, museums, sporting events, movies, and more
1 Citi ThankYou point per $1 spent on all other purchases

Here I Am With My Citi ThankYou Premier Earning Double Points on Double Drinks Until Seeing Double in Europe.  (Just Kidding.  I Almost Always Usually Drink Responsibly for the Most Part.)
Perks:
Price Protection:   They call it “Citi Price Rewind.”  What’s cool about it is when you pay for registered items at certain online merchants with your ThankYou Premier, Citi will automatically check for a lower price at other stores.  Harlan uses this perk a lot with Amazon.  You can save up to $1,000 per calendar year this way!  When you sign-up you can review the restrictions.  But it’s pretty easy and works well.
Extended Warranty:   By paying for an eligible item with the Citi ThankYou Premier card, you can extend the manufacturer’s warranty by an additional 24 months (total coverage between both the manufacturer’s warranty and extended warranty cannot exceed 84 months).  See the complete Guide to Benefits for all the details.  I can tell you that I always make expensive purchases with a credit card that has this feature.  That way I can turn down the rip-off extended warranty they offer at the store.
No Foreign Transaction Fee:  Use your Citi ThankYou Premier card anywhere in the world and never get hit with an “international fee.”  Avoid using credit cards that slap you with a 3% junk fee!
When you pay for travel with your Citi ThankYou Premier card you’ll get:
Baggage delay protection:  Get up to $100 per covered traveler if your bags are delayed 6+ hours
Trip delay protection:   Get up to $500 per covered traveler to pay for meals and hotels if your trip is delayed 12+ hours.  Nobody thinks about which credit card to use until their flight is delayed and you have to fly out the next day.  Be smart and let your credit card company reimburse your hotels and meals instead of having to beg airport staff for one of those ridiculously cheap $9 meal vouchers they give you.
Trip cancellation & interruption:   You may be reimbursed up to $5,000 per covered traveler per trip if the trip is cancelled or interrupted for an eligible reason.
Do you qualify for the ThankYou Premier?  Citi says, “Bonus ThankYou Points are not available if you have had a ThankYou Preferred, ThankYou Premier or Citi Prestige card opened or closed in the past 24 months.”  You likely need a credit score around 750 or higher.  But of course Citi has the final say!  I was approved with an 800 credit score and a middle class income.

Is the Citi ThankYou Premier Worth the Annual Fee?   Yes.  It’s only $95 for all the above.  Oh yeah, it’s $0 in year 1 with the card.  Use your points for $1,000+ worth of flights using our tips.  Or for $750 worth of flights the super easy way in their travel portal.
Citi ThankYou Premier Bottom Line:   I have this credit card.  It costs nothing to own for the first 12 months.  It’s got some great perks plus the bonus is worth between $750 and $1,000+ for travel depending how you use it.  That’s why it’s in our Top 10 list!
Apply here:   Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

Best Southwest Airlines Bonus: Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
Apply here:   Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card
Read our full review of the Chase Southwest Premier Business Card

The Official Offer:   Earn 60,000 Southwest points after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.
This is the highest sign-up bonus we’ve seen on the card.
And 60,000 Southwest points means what exactly?
~$900!  Because in our experience booking flights, 1 Southwest point generally maps to ~1.5 cents.
Two amazing things about Southwest points:
1 – no blackout dates or funny business.  If the flight still has seats for sale, you can book it with points.
2 – We consider the Southwest Companion Pass to be the best deal in domestic travel.  Your designated travel companion flies free with you on all your Southwest flights.  These 60,000 points will get you over half-way to the 110,000 Southwest Companion Pass qualifying points you need to earn in one calendar year to get the Pass.
Whenever Team Member Keith Books a Flight on Southwest, His Wife Can Join Him for Free!  That’s Because He Earned the Companion Pass With Credit Card Points
Southwest has other great perks:

You get 2 free checked bags on every flight
You do NOT pay change or cancel fees on paid or award flights

Because Southwest Has No Blackout Dates, It’s Easy to Redeem Points for Flights to Destinations Like Los Cabos, Mexico!
Ongoing Earning Potential:

2 Southwest points per $1 on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partner purchases
1 Southwest point per $1 on everything else
6,000 Southwest points after your cardmember anniversary (Keith says that’s enough for him to fly from the Los Angeles area to Las Vegas, San Francisco, or Portland whenever Southwest has one of its frequent fare sales)

Lost Luggage Reimbursement: If you or your immediate family members’ checked or carry-on bags are damaged or lost, you’re covered up to $3,000 per passenger when you pay with the card.  Now that’s peace of mind.  Unless you think too hard about who’s wearing your pants now.
Extended Warranty Protection: Extends the time period of the US manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of 3 years or less.  I love earning points for a purchase AND having the warranty extended.
Baggage Delay Insurance: Reimburses you for essential purchases like toiletries and clothing for baggage delays over 6 hours up to $100 a day for 3 days
Purchase Protection:  Covers your new purchases for 120 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account
Free Cards for your employees:  You’ll earn points for purchases they make on the cards
No Foreign Transaction Fee:  Hooray!  So when you fly Southwest to the Caribbean, you can bring your card and use it with none of those tacky tack-on fees that some cards add.
Do you qualify for the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card?  Yes, if you have a for-profit business.  It can be a small business of just you!  You’d just mark down sole proprietor on the application and use your social security number.  Keith was approved this way for his eBay reselling business.

But if you’re in one of these next 2 categories… sadness… you’re not eligible:
1. You have opened 5+ new credit cards from any bank within the past 24 months.  But this does NOT count small business cards from American Express, Bank of America, Chase, Citi, and Wells Fargo.
2. You already have the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card OR have earned the sign-up bonus in the past 24 months.

Is the Southwest Premier Business Card Worth the Annual Fee?   Yes.  The $99 annual fee is more than fair for $900 worth of flights!  Plus you get all the perks listed above.  And the bonus points on your card anniversary can help to offset the annual fee.
Southwest Premier Business Card Bottom Line:   We recommend this credit card for anyone who would fly on Southwest.  And it’s an especially awesome card for those of you who travel with a partner because of the opportunity to earn the lucrative Companion Pass!
For a long time I resisted flying on Southwest because I thought it’d be a bad experience.  I was wrong!  I’ve flown Southwest to Cancun and a few times in the US so far and it’s all been pleasant.

Apply here:   Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card
Best Business Credit Card With No Annual Fee + 5% Categories: Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Apply here:   Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Read our review:   Biggest No-Brainer Deal of the Year: $500 Cash Back (50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points!)
 

With the highest-ever Ink Business Cash sign-up bonus, you’ll earn $500 cash back (50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points!) after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.  Earning $500 in cash from a card with no annual fee is an AWESOME deal!
It also comes with:

5% cash back (5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points) on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on phone, internet, and cable TV services each account anniversary year
2% cash back (2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points) on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year
1% cash back (1X Chase Ultimate Rewards point) on all other purchases
Primary car rental insurance (CDW) when renting for business purposes, covering damage due to collision or theft to your rental car when you pay with your Chase Ink Business Cash card. Secondary coverage when renting for personal reasons

Million Mile Secrets team member Keith has kept this card in his wallet because it has no annual fee.  He uses it to earn 5% cash back (5X points) at Staples when shopping for his eBay drop shipping business.
And I’ve kept my Ink Business Cash card for many years because I earn 5X points on my monthly internet bill and 2X points at restaurants.  Liquid Hint:   Many times your business cocktails and networking wine earn 2X points too!  Because bars and lounges often code as restaurants to the credit card company.
Using Your Points:  If you ONLY have the Chase Ink Business Cash credit card, you’ve got one option: cash.  However, if you ALSO have the Chase Ink Business Preferred (yes, you can own both cards) OR the Chase Sapphire Preferred OR the Chase Sapphire Reserve you now have travel superpowers.
Because you can lift all the points you earn with your Ink Cash above your head, create a impressive fiery orb, and hurl them over to one of those “premium” cards.  And from there you have access to all the travel partners I talked about in the Chase Ink Business Preferred section!
I Took This Photo of the Infinity Pool While Staying at the All-Inclusive Hyatt Zilara in Cancun. Not Bad! I Paid $0 for the Stay Because I Moved the Points I Earned With My Chase Ink Cash to My Chase Sapphire Preferred. And From There I Transferred Them to Hyatt to Get My Free Stay
Perks:   Primary rental car insurance (when renting for business purposes), extended warranty, delayed baggage, and lost luggage protection.
You can check all the details of the fantastic benefits when you get to the Ink Cash card offer page.  But I’ll give you a real-life example.  I walked into my local Staples ready to make a significant purchase.  Naturally I was prepared with my Ink Cash business credit card because with it I earn 5X points at office supply stores such as this.  I made my significant purchase.  And that’s when it happened.
The sales person pitched me about the, you guessed it, the dreaded extended warranty.
He said, “You fool!  You’re about to pay big bucks for your significant purchase yet you won’t pay this relatively tiny amount to protect your investment for an extra year?” 
I inhaled my Zen.  And exhaled, “Nah.  I’m good.” 
He dug in.  “How could you be so feckless… so irresponsible… have you no regard for society?!” 
But his pleas for extra cheese were for naught.  For I own, behold!… the Ink Business Cash credit card!  And it adds an extra year to the warranty.  Be gone, extended-warranty-pusher!
Is the Chase Ink Business Cash Worth the Annual Fee?  Yes.  Because there is no annual fee!  But this card DOES charge foreign transaction fees, which is why I use my Chase Sapphire Preferred when I travel abroad.
Chase Ink Business Cash Bottom Line:   I use this business credit card all the time.  It costs $0 to own.  Enjoy.
Apply here:   Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Best Business Credit Card With No Annual Fee + 1.5% Cash Back Everywhere: Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
Apply here:   Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

The Intro Offer:   You will receive 50,000 bonus points which you can redeem for $500 cash back when you make purchases totaling $3,000+ during the first 3 months from account opening.
Ongoing Earning Potential:   You can earn an unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase.
Using Your Points:  What’s cool here is that this works the same way as the Ink Business Cash.  You can use your points for cash back OR, if you have a “premium” Ultimate Rewards card (AKA it has an annual fee) like Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Chase Ink Business Preferred, you can then move your points to those premium cards for premium travel rewards.
Really, the Ink Business Unlimited is very similar to the Ink Business Cash.  It’s possible to have both cards.  But if you’re trying to decide, I think of these cards like this…
Do you prefer your love partner to be pretty good looking all the time, no matter the circumstance?  Then choose Ink Business Unlimited because you get 1.5X points on all your purchases without having to think about it.
Or do you prefer your romantic partner to look just OK most of the time but drop-dead gorgeous for special occasions… like when you walk into office supply stores.  And when you pay your phone and internet bill.  And your partner is doubly-attractive when you go out to restaurants and gas stations.  If that’s your pick, go with Ink Business Cash (the card listed above this one) instead.
Ink Business Unlimited Bottom Line:   You really can’t go wrong here.  No annual fee and you earn 1.5% cash back on all purchases AND you can earn a $500 sign-up bonus?  Easy pick.
Apply here:   Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
Best Credit Card for Simple Travel Rewards:  Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Apply here:   Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Read our full review of the Capital One Venture Card
 

You can earn 50,000 Venture miles (worth $500 in travel) by applying for the Capital One Venture card and spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months.
The card has a straightforward rewards program, which means the miles are easy to redeem.  All you have to do is pay for travel expenses (like airfare, hotel stays, parking, and much more) with your credit card.  Then, log-in to your account and “erase” the charge by redeeming your miles.
The Capital One Venture is perhaps the best credit card for points that you can use for nearly ANYTHING travel related.  Check out this post with outside-the-box ways to redeem Venture miles, like Costco travel packages!
Prefer Airbnbs or Staying Off the Beaten Path? The Capital One Venture Makes Redeeming Rewards Easy!
In addition to the card’s valuable sign-up bonus, you’ll get:

2 Venture miles per $1 you spend on all purchases
Statement credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck
10 Venture miles per $1 you spend on hotel stays booked and paid for with your card through this Hotels.com link (through January 31, 2020)
NO foreign transaction fees

Cards that offer to reimburse Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fees usually have much higher annual fees (often between $450 and $550).  But this card has a $95 annual fee, waived the first year!
The card also comes with Visa Signature Benefits, which include:

Rental car insurance – Secondary protection for damage due to collision or theft
Travel accident insurance – Up to $250,000 insurance for accidental loss of life, limb, sight, speech, or hearing
Lost luggage insurance – Up to $3,000 per trip, provided the luggage was lost from theft or misdirection by the airline, cruise, etc.

Apply here for the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Best Cash Back Credit Card for Restaurants & Entertainment
Apply here:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Or read our full analysis:   Capital One Savor Review

The Intro Offer:   $500 cash back after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.  Nice.
Ongoing Earning Potential:   

4% cash back on dining (secret: oftentimes bars and nightclubs code as dining too!)
4% cash back on entertainment (concerts, tourist attractions, theme parks, and more!)
2% cash back at grocery stores

You’ll earn 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Best of all, there’s no limit on how much bonus cash back you can earn!
Using Your Points:   You can request a check or statement credit, any time, with no minimum redemption amount.  Or set-up an automatic redemption such as $25 back per month.
Capital One Savor Bottom Line:   I typically use my Chase Sapphire Preferred while traveling overseas.  But I’m very much considering adding the Savor card to my wallet.  Because it also has no foreign transaction fee AND rewards you with a fat and unlimited 4% cash back on dining out and entertainment.  Typically my biggest expenses overseas are restaurants/bars, tourist attractions, and groceries.  (Since I usually use points for flights and hotels.)  What I also love about Savor is you can try the card free the first 11 months.  Then if you feel like it’s really been saving you money, you only pay the $95 annual fee starting in year 2 with the card.  All that plus the $500 intro bonus makes this a strong offer.
Apply here:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
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Best Business Credit Card for Simple Travel Rewards: Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business

Apply here:   Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business

Read our review of the Capital One Spark Miles Card

 

The Spark Offer:   You earn simple rewards with the Capital One Spark Miles.  When you sign-up, you’ll earn 50,000 Spark miles (worth $500 in travel) after spending $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months.  And you’ll earn 2 miles per $1 on all purchases.

You can use to offset nearly any travel purchase you put on this business credit card.  It’s a very good deal!

Ongoing Earning Potential:   2X Spark miles per $1 you spend on all purchases.

These Spark miles are worth 1 cent each toward travel purchases.  Spark miles are NOT airline miles.  You basically get 2% back to offset travel purchases you make with this business credit card.

Using Your Points:   Use the card to pay for travel like you normally would.  Then log-in to your online account to “erase” the travel purchase with your miles.

Perks:

Purchase Security and Extended Protection:   They will replace, repair, or reimburse you for eligible items of personal property up to $10,000 per claim for 90 days from the date of purchase in the event of theft or damage.

And “Extended Protection” doubles the time period of the original manufacturer’s written US repair warranty up to 1 full year on warranties of 3 years or less when you purchase the item entirely with your Capital One Spark Miles Business card.

Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver:  You receive primary coverage, at no additional cost, for damage due to collision or theft when you charge your entire rental transaction to your Spark Miles Business credit card and decline the rental company’s collision damage waiver.

This saves you money when you rent a car for business.

Lost Luggage Reimbursement:   Your checked or carry-on luggage is covered up to $3,000 if lost or stolen when you charge your entire common carrier ticket to your Spark Miles Visa Signature Business credit card.

No Foreign Transaction Fee:  This is how it should be!  Plus Visa is accepted almost everywhere.

Free Employee Cards:   Add employee cards at no additional cost, and earn all the rewards from their purchases.

Is the Capital One Spark Miles for Business Worth the Annual Fee?  It certainly is in your first year with the card.  Because you’re not charged the $95 annual fee until after your first year owning this business credit card.  At ~10 months with the card, I recommend you look over your spending habits to see if the card makes sense for you to keep.  Whenever I have to cancel a credit card (which is unusual for me) I’ve found it to be quick and hassle-free.

Capital One Spark Miles Bottom Line:   If you like Capital One and you like this business credit card, it’s definitely worth adding this ice cream flavor to your freezer.

Apply here:   Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business –>
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Best Cash Back Business Credit Card With 2% Everywhere: Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business

Apply here:   Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business

Read our review of the Capital One Spark Cash Card

The Capital One Spark Cash back credit card in one of our best rated credit cards because you’ll earn a $500 cash sign-up bonus after spending $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.  You’ll also earn unlimited 2% cash back on all purchases!

$500 Intro Bonus for Capital One Spark Cash! That’s Enough for Your New York City Shopping Spree! You Could Buy a Shirt

I like that there are no foreign transaction fees and that you can redeem your cash back for any amount.

Apply here:   Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business
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Best American Airlines Business Card: CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®

Apply here:  CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®
Or read our full review of the CitiBusiness American Airlines Platinum Select Credit Card

The Official Offer:  Earn 70,000 American Airlines miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 4 months of opening your account.
And 70,000 American Airlines miles means what exactly?

The Long Flight to Asia Is SO Much Better When You Can Lay Down to Sleep in Cathay Pacific Business Class! (Book With American Airlines Miles)
With 70,000 American Airlines miles you can:

Fly round-trip to Europe, Hawaii, Asia, or South America
Fly one-way in Business Class to Japan or Korea
Get 2 round-trip flights to anywhere in the continental US

Fly one-way First Class from coast to coast in the US
Get 2 round-trip flights to the Caribbean, Central America, or Mexico

Those are just a few of the awesome options you’ll have with your 70,000 American Airlines miles!
Many of you will combine the credit card bonus with your current stash of American Airlines miles.  Or you’ll keep using the card to earn more miles.  So here’s an idea of what you can do when you collect more American Airlines miles:
Sleep Your Way to Australia on Qantas Airlines by Using American Airlines Miles to Fly in a Business Class Bed

Fly one-way in Business Class to Australia or New Zealand for 80,000 American Airlines miles on partner airline Qantas
Fly one-way in First Class to Japan for 80,000 American Airlines on partner Japan Airlines
Fly one-way in First Class to Europe for 85,000 American Airlines miles

I’ve got to say, I usually fly coach to save miles and take more trips, but… wow, life sure is better when you’re able to lay down and sleep on a long flight.  Plus you’re treated to much tastier food and liquor.
Ongoing Earning Potential:

2 American Airlines miles per $1 spent on American Airlines purchases
2 American Airlines miles per $1 spent at $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations
1 American Airlines mile per $1 spent on other purchases

Perks:
Free first checked bag:  You get a bag!  Your travel companion gets a bag!  Everyone gets a bag!  OK, not everyone.  But up to 4 travel companions get a free checked bag on the same reservation on domestic American Airlines flights.  That’s a huge money saver!
Preferred boarding on American Airlines flights:  Nice.
Discounted in-flight Wi-Fi:  Get 25% off when you purchase with your card.  Not amazing, but I’ll take it.

No Foreign Transaction Fee:  Excellent perk.
Extended Warranty:  This benefit doubles the original manufacturer warranty up to a maximum of 12 months on warranties of 5 years or less for most items you purchase with your eligible CitiBusiness®/AAdvantage® Mastercard.  So you can feel at ease when you turn down the store’s extra warranty coverage that they try to sell you.
Purchase Protection:  You’re covered for most items you purchase with your eligible CitiBusiness®/AAdvantage® Mastercard if the item is damaged or stolen within 90 days of the date of purchase.  This is a major reason I’ll NEVER make product purchases with a debit card.  Your credit card gets you miles and peace of mind.
Mastercard Easy Savings:  CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® cardmembers (that was a mouthful to say) are enrolled to receive automatic rebates on eligible purchases with Mastercard® Easy Savings.  OK, so I looked over these and some of the savings are pretty cool.  Currently (keep in mind these can change) you can save 4% at many hotels and restaurants.  Being a food lover, I took a closer look at the dining perk.  Here’s what it says:
“Just dine at a restaurant within the Dinova network and use your eligible Mastercard business credit card to pay for your meal as you normally would.  Nothing else is required.  The rebate will apply to the entire charge, including taxes and tips. The rebate will appear on your statement in the form of a credit.”
Woo-hoo!  I know what you’re thinking… Dinova network?  So I did a quick search of New York City as an example and a ton of restaurants popped up ranging from upscale steakhouses to chain restaurants.  So it’s easy to automatically knock 4% off your bill!

Is the CitiBusiness American Airlines Credit Card Worth the Annual Fee?   Yes.  You pay $0 your first 12 months with the card.  Then it’s $99 a year.  If you’re flying on American Airlines it’d be hard to NOT make up the annual fee in checked bag savings!  I really dislike baggage fees.  But at least there’s a way to wiggle out of them.
CitiBusiness American Airlines Card Bottom Line:   The 70,000 American Airlines bonus miles are worth ~$1,500 depending on how you them.  That’s an awesome intro bonus!  You’re going to save a lot of money on baggage fees.  You board early.  For folks who fly on American Airlines or want to fly on great partner airlines to Hawaii, Europe, Asia, and more, this is an excellent deal.
Apply here:   CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®
Best Travel Credit Card for Premium Rewards: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Apply here:   Chase Sapphire Reserve
Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve
 

The Chase Sapphire Reserve is the #1 premium travel credit card… premium because of the price tag but also because of the perks.
When you sign-up for the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’ll earn 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
The sign-up bonus can get you $750 worth of travel when you redeem points for flights, hotels, car rentals, and more through the Chase travel portal.  Because when you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve, your points are worth 1.5 cents each on travel booked through Chase!
And if you have other Chase Ultimate Rewards points earning cards, you can move points to your Sapphire Reserve account to increase the value of your points!
You Can Redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards Points for Travel Almost Anywhere in the World. Even the Far-Flung Islands of the Maldives!
With the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’ll also get:

3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 on travel (excluding $300 travel credit) and dining
$300 statement credit for travel purchases (like airfare, Airbnb, hotels, car rental, Uber, etc.) each account anniversary year
Priority Pass Select for access to airport lounges
$100 statement credit for Global Entry
NO foreign transaction fees

The card comes with a $450 annual fee.  But you can offset this fee with perks like the $300 travel statement credit and airport lounge access.
Team member Keith says this is the #1 card he uses.  Because he loves to earn easy and valuable bonus points for dining out!
Bottom Line
Our favorite credit card offers for this month are:

Best Business Credit Card:   Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Best Travel Credit Card:   Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Best Citi Travel Credit Card Bonus (Worth $750+):  Citi ThankYou® Premier Card

Best Southwest Airlines Bonus (Worth $900): Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card

Best Business Credit Card With No Annual Fee + 5% Categories:   Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card
Best Business Credit Card With No Annual Fee + 1.5% Cash Back Everywhere:   Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
Best Credit Card for Simple Travel Rewards:   Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Best Cash Back Credit Card for Restaurants & Entertainment:   Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Best American Airlines Business Card:   CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®
Best Travel Credit Card for Premium Rewards:   Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Your turn to comment… let us know which credit card is best!

AMEX Platinum Review: Travel Like You’re Rich (Even If You’re Not)

Right now, you can earn 60,000 valuable AMEX Membership Rewards points when you open The Platinum Card® from American Express and meet the minimum spending requirements.  That’s enough for a Business Class flight to Europe, 2 round-trip flights to Hawaii, or free nights at luxury Hilton hotels that can be worth thousands!
That said, it comes with a hefty $550 annual fee, NOT waived the first year.  But it also includes benefits that can more than outweigh the cost, even for a casual traveler.  So getting the card could make sense for lots of folks!
You can apply here for The Platinum Card® from American Express.
Want to See Buckingham Palace?  Use AMEX Membership Rewards for a Free Flight to London AND a Hotel Nearby!
I’ll dig into all the perks of this lucrative card and welcome bonus.  And help you decide!
The AMEX Platinum Welcome Bonus Is Worth $1,000+
Apply Here:   The Platinum Card® from American Express

With The Platinum Card® from American Express, you can earn 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening your account.
60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points is enough for flights to:

Another destination in the continental US
Hawaii
Canada & Alaska
Caribbean & Mexico
Europe
India & the Middle East
Africa
South America

Use AMEX Membership Rewards Points to Fly to Peru and Explore the Quaint Town of Cusco
Some of those flights could cost thousands of dollars otherwise!  In that case, your bonus would definitely make the annual fee worth paying for the first year!
How to Earn Points With the AMEX Platinum Card
With the AMEX Platinum, you’ll earn:

5 AMEX Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on airfare (booked either directly with the airline or through AMEX Travel)
5 AMEX Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on prepaid hotels booked on AMEX Travel
1 AMEX Membership Rewards point per $1 on everything else

The ability to earn 5 points per $1 on airfare is an industry best!  You can earn 3X with other cards, but the 5X perk is unique to AMEX Platinum cards.
If you spent a lot on airfare, you can earn huge rewards.  For example, if you spend $1,000 per month for flights, that would translate to 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points per year ($12,000 X 5 points per $1).  That’s like earning another welcome bonus just for using the card regularly.  Then you can use them to travel even more!
How to Use Your Points
AMEX Membership Rewards points are some of the most flexible, because you transfer them directly to several airline or hotel travel programs.  For example, with this welcome bonus alone, you can:

Transfer 60,000 points to British Airways for 8 one-way short-haul flights in the US under 1,151 miles each-way in coach
Transfer 55,000 points to Air Canada Aeroplan for a one-way Business Class flight to Europe
Transfer 60,000 points to Flying Blue for 2 round-trip coach flights from anywhere in the mainland US to Hawaii
Transfer 60,000 points to Delta for 2 round-trip coach flights to the Caribbean
Transfer 60,000 points to British Airways for 6 one-way coach flights to Northern South America from Miami

You can also transfer AMEX Membership Rewards points to certain hotel partners, including Hilton.  With a 1:2 transfer ratio, 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points gets you 120,000 Hilton points.  Which is enough for a night at nearly any Hilton luxury hotel in the world!
Transfer AMEX Membership Rewards Points for a Free Stay at DoubleTree Resort & Spa in the Seychelles
For example, you could stay at the DoubleTree Resort & Spa in the Seychelles for 70,000 Hilton points (~35,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points because of the 1:2 transfer ratio).  If you paid cash, you’d easily spend ~$450.
Using points to avoid higher prices during peak travel season – anywhere – is a smart way to save money!
Benefits of the AMEX Platinum Card
Tons of Credits
Let’s talk about the credits you get with the AMEX Platinum card!
You get:

$200 annual airline incidental fee credit on your selected airline
Up to $200 in Uber credit per year
Up to $100 credit for Saks Fifth Avenue
Statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85)

The $200 airline fee credit and Uber credits reset every calendar year.  And you can use the Global Entry or TSA PreCheck credit every 4 years.
Enjoy Expedited Security Lines With Global Entry or TSA PreCheck!
AMEX Fine Hotels & Resorts
AMEX Fine Hotels & Resorts offers competitive rates for paid luxury hotel stays.
When you book this program, you’ll receive automatic perks like free breakfast for 2 and a spa or resort credit to use during your stay.  And you’ll even get a guaranteed 4:00 pm late check-out.  Plus, they have limited-time offers at certain hotels for complimentary nights with a paid stay.
For example, team member Sara used AMEX Fine Hotels & Resorts to book a room at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and received:

Noon check-in
A room upgrade
$100 food and beverage credit
Daily breakfast for 2 people
Free self-parking (a $30 value)
A bowl of fresh fruit and chocolates delivered to her door
Guaranteed 4:00 pm late check-out

Sara Was Upgraded to a LAKE VIEW Room Simply for Booking Through AMEX Fine Hotels & Resorts
Lounge Access All Over the World
You’ll get airport lounge access with Priority Pass, Centurion, Delta SkyClub, and AirSpace Lounges around the world.  And you can visit an unlimited number of times!  Just be sure to carefully check the guest policy if you travel with a partner or family.
If you’re near a Centurion Lounge, you can enjoy a full meal, drink, and sometimes even a spa treatment – for free!
Team member Harlan lives in Dallas, where the Centurion Lounge is about to get big improvements.  And he loves to grab an entree, a couple of drinks, and fast Wi-Fi before or after a flight.  He values each visit at ~$50 and visits about once a month.
Depending on how often you visit, and if you have any guests, you can get real value from:

Wi-Fi
Food and drinks
Showers
More comfortable seating

Lots of Lounges (Especially Internationally) Have Proper Meals.  Not Just Crackers and Trail Mix
Perks like these can make all the difference when you’ve come off a long flight and want to shower and grab a bite!
Elite Status With 2 Hotel Chains
That’s right!  You can get free Gold elite status with Hilton and Starwood (Marriott) with the AMEX Platinum Card.
Depending on where you stay, folks with elite status can get:

Free breakfast (Hilton hotels only)
Upgrades to bigger rooms where available
Late check-out
Better rooms (views, higher floors, etc.)
More points for paid stays

Team member Harlan enjoyed a big room with a clawfoot bathtub, a beautiful tiled floor, and huge king bed in Barcelona.  That was better than the room with the queen bed he originally booked!
Team Member Harlan Scored an Upgrade at a Hilton in Barcelona Thanks to His Elite Status!
Depending on how often you stay at these hotel brands, elite status can go a long way towards little comforts along your journeys.
Travel Insurance and Purchase Protection
If everything above wasn’t enough, consider all the other perks of your AMEX cardmembership, like:

Car rental loss and damage insurance
Extended warranty
Purchase protection
Return protection
Baggage insurance plan
Global Assist hotline
Roadside assistance
Travel accident insurance

All of these built-in perks are there for you if you need them.  They’re sort of like insurance – it’s great to know they’re there, but hopefully you’ll never have to use them!
If you buy big-ticket items, or gifts that need return protection, you’ll have that should you need it.  Same goes for the roadside assistance and travel accident insurance.  It would be great if every trip was free from mishaps like cancellations, missed luggage, or an issue with the rental car.  But your AMEX Platinum Card can help you in a bind.
There’s no way to put a defined value on any of these services.  So consider them “extras” and look into them if there’s one you think you might really benefit from.
Oh, and don’t forget, you can get free 2-day shipping at many merchants with a free ShopRunner subscription, too!
AMEX Offers
The AMEX Platinum Card is eligible for AMEX Offers, which are deals from AMEX for all sorts of common purchases and services like online orders, eating out, and travel.
Team Member Jasmin Saved $195 Last Year With AMEX Offers
Team member Jasmin saved on snacks for her kids and her phone bill, for example.  And other team members take advantage of these special deals, too.
They’re a handy way to help offset the cost of the annual fee.
Is the AMEX Platinum Card Worth the Annual Fee?
Everyone will find different value from the AMEX Platinum card because it offers so many different perks and benefits to the cardholder.  The more you can take advantage of the these great benefits, the more you can offset the annual fee.  And come out way ahead!
For example, you’ll receive $500 in credits annually ($200 for airline incidentals + $200 for Uber + $100 for Saks Fifth Avenue).  If you use those, you’re effectively bringing the annual fee down to $50 per year.  You’ll get WAAAAY more than $50 in value from the other perks of the card, like free food and alcohol at airport lounges, room upgrades and food credits through AMEX Fine Hotels & Resorts, discounts with AMEX Offers, and complimentary hotel elite status.
You Can Use Your Annual $200 in Uber Credits to Get Free Food From Uber Eats!
Does the AMEX Platinum Card Have a Foreign Transaction Fee?
No!
Who Is Eligible for the AMEX Platinum Card?
If you’re just starting in the miles & points hobby and don’t have a lot of new credit card accounts open, I suggest getting the Chase personal cards that best fit your travel goals first.  That’s because Chase has some of the best rewards credit cards, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, that’s our favorite card for beginners.
But if you’ve opened 5 or more credit cards from any bank within the past 24 months, you’ll likely be denied for most Chase credit cards.  So start there, then add others, like the AMEX Platinum Card.
It’s also important to remember that the AMEX Platinum Card is a charge card.  That means you have to pay the bill in full at the end of every billing cycle.  So you can NOT carry a balance month to month.  If you’re comfortable with paying the card each month, and love the perks, it’s an excellent card to have in your wallet!
In fact, the AMEX Platinum is one of the best cards on the market, so I wouldn’t recommend applying unless your credit score is at least in the mid-700s.
Cards Similar to the AMEX Platinum
If you’re hesitant to give the AMEX Platinum a go, there are other cards that will give you a similar experience.
The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN comes with many of the same perks as the AMEX Platinum.  It’s got identical airport lounge access, a $200 statement credit for airline incidentals, hotel elite status, etc.  And the annual fee is $100 less ($450)!
The card comes with up to 75,000 Membership Rewards points:

50,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after spending $10,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening
25,000 more AMEX Membership Rewards points after spending an additional $10,000 on qualifying purchases within the first 3 months

You can read our review of the AMEX Business Platinum here.
You should also consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve for similar benefits to the AMEX Platinum.  It comes with 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
You Can Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards Points to Lots of Travel Partners That Fly to Fun Destinations, Like Sunny Cancun!
The card comes with a $300 annual credit that can be used for nearly anything travel related.  So you’re effectively paying a $150 annual fee with the Chase Sapphire Reserve ($450 annual fee – $300 travel credit).  You’ll also receive airport lounge access, rental car discounts, and much more!
The Chase Sapphire Reserve has a $450 annual fee, which is NOT waived for the first year.  But the annual travel credit and airport lounge access can more than offset the annual fee!
Read our review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve here.
Bottom Line
You can earn 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of opening a new Platinum Card® from American Express.  That’s enough to travel nearly anywhere in the world with an AMEX travel partner like Delta, Flying Blue, or Singapore Airlines!
You’ll also get:

5X AMEX Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on airline tickets purchased directly with airlines or with American Express Travel, and on prepaid hotels booked on the AMEX Travel Portal
$200 for annual airline incidental fee credit
Up to $200 in Uber credit per year
Airport lounge access to Priority Pass, Centurion, Delta SkyClub, and AirSpace Lounges
Statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85)
Hotel elite status with Hilton and Marriott / Starwood
And so much more!

Smaller perks like AMEX Offers and free ShopRunner shipping add to the value.  But be strategic with the benefits because the $550 annual fee is NOT waived.  And if you’re new to miles & points, start with Chase cards instead.
What’s your favorite perk of the AMEX Platinum Card?

This 60,000-Point Offer Can Get You an Easy $750 in Travel (or Much More When You Transfer to Airlines!)

Did you miss the best-ever offer on one of our favorite flexible points cards?  Right now, you can earn 60,000 Citi ThankYou points when you open the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card and spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening your account.
That’s the highest public bonus we’ve seen on the card.  And it’s 10,000 points MORE than the last time this card had a sign-up bonus!  If you spend a lot on travel, gas, dining, or entertainment, you’ll want to consider this offer, because these bonus categories can really boost your points balance quickly.
And you don’t have to be an miles and points expert or spend hours poring over award charts to make the most of this bonus.  60,000 Citi ThankYou points are worth an easy $750 toward paid travel through the Citi ThankYou travel portal, including flights, hotels, rental cars, and cruises.
But you can get potentially much more value when you transfer points to airline partners like Singapore Airlines and Flying Blue.
You can apply for the Citi ThankYou Premier card here.  
Use the Citi ThankYou Premier’s 60,000-Point Bonus for $750 in Flights. Or Transfer the Points to Partners to Visit Incredible Cities, Like Paris!
I’ll share my full review of this card, and help you decide if you should apply!
The Citi ThankYou Premier Sign-Up Bonus Is Worth at LEAST $750 Toward Travel!
Apply Here:   Citi ThankYou® Premier Card 

When you sign-up for the Citi ThankYou Premier card, you’ll earn 60,000 Citi ThankYou points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.
This is the best offer we’ve seen for this card!  The points you earn are transferable, which gives you more flexibility by letting you access to Citi’s airline partners.
Or, you can use the points to book travel through Citi’s ThankYou travel portal, where they’re worth 1.25 cents each towards flights, hotels, rental cars, and cruises.  That means this sign-up bonus is worth – at a minimum – $750 (60,000 points X 1.25 cents per point).  That’s a great deal, considering the annual fee is waived the 12 months!
Or, you can transfer points to Citi’s travel partners, including Flying Blue (the loyalty program for Air France and KLM), Singapore Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic.
Citi ThankYou Points Add up Quick!  I’ve Used Them to Visit Several Cities in Europe, and Got to Stroll Around the Canals in Amsterdam
I’ve personally transferred Citi ThankYou points to travel partners to take my family to Hawaii, fly to Europe on Brussels Airlines, and hop between Prague and Brussels for my flight home.
Having more flexible points is always a good thing!  And even if you use the points to cover $750 worth of flights, that’s still a fantastic deal.

How to Earn Points With the Citi ThankYou Premier Card

The points add up fast with the Citi ThankYou Premier card.  Especially if you spend a lot on travel, dining, or entertainment.  That’s because you earn:

3 Citi ThankYou points per $1 spent on travel including gas stations (also including airfare, hotels, car rental agencies, parking, tolls, and much more)
2 Citi ThankYou points per $1 spent at restaurants and on select entertainment (like amusement parks, museums, sporting events, movies, and more)
1 Citi ThankYou point per $1 spent on all other purchases

Rack up 3X Citi ThankYou Points on Travel, Including Gas Stations!
For example, if you completed the $4,000 minimum spending requirement with travel and gas purchases, you’d earn the 60,000-point bonus and 12,000 more points ($4,000 X 3), for a total of 72,000 Citi ThankYou points.  That would be worth at least $900 for travel (72,000 points X 1.25 cents per point)!
Team member Jasmin uses this card every time she fills up her gas tank.  Of course, only when other cards don’t have better quarterly category bonuses!
If you have a big family or commute to work, you can earn a ton of points on gas alone.

How to Use Your Citi ThankYou Points

Link:   How to Transfer Citi ThankYou Points to Airlines
Currently, you can transfer Citi ThankYou points to:

Avianca
Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
EVA Air
Etihad Guest
Flying Blue (Air France / KLM)
Garuda Indonesia
Jet Airways
JetBlue
Malaysia Airlines
Qantas
Qatar Airways
Singapore Airlines
Thai Airways
Turkish Airlines
Virgin Atlantic

Citi ThankYou points transfer at a 1:1 ratio with all of the above partners except JetBlue (5:4 ratio).   All transfers must be in 1,000-point increments.
Use Citi ThankYou Points for Award Flights to Hawaii Via Flying Blue or Singapore Airlines
With 60,000 Citi ThankYou points, you could:

Fly 3 people between New York and Vancouver on Cathay Pacific for 20,000 Asia miles round-trip in coach
Visit Hawaii on United Airlines flights booked with 35,000 Singapore Airlines miles round-trip in coach
Hop around Europe on Brussels Airlines for 5,000 or 7,000 Etihad miles each way (and get up to 12 award flights!)
Fly 3 people to London from Boston, Newark, New York-JFK, or Washington, DC, for 20,000 Virgin Atlantic miles round-trip in coach during off-peak season

But it doesn’t even have to be that complicated!
With the Citi ThankYou Premier, you can book paid flights, hotels, rental cars, and cruises through the ThankYou travel portal.  There, your points are worth 1.25 cents each.  There are no blackout dates or hard-to-find awards – just book your travel with points as if you were paying cash.
And when you book flights this way, you’ll also earn frequent flyer miles because it’s treated like a cash ticket!
Depending on the price of the flights you want, your dates, and if you can find award seats, you might decide to use your Citi ThankYou points this way because you won’t have to think about blackout dates or searching for awards.

Benefits of the Citi ThankYou Premier Card

In addition to the valuable sign-up bonus, there are other ongoing benefits that make the Citi ThankYou Premier card worth keeping long-term.
Citi Price Rewind

Citi Price Rewind is a unique perk you’ll find on all Citi personal cards.  When you pay for registered items at certain online merchants, Citi will automatically check for a lower price at other merchants.
If Citi finds the same item at a lower price within 60 days of your initial purchase date, you may receive a credit for the price difference!  To be eligible for coverage, you must pay for the item at least in part with your Citi card.
I Shop on Amazon Constantly and Regularly Save a Few Bucks Here and There With Citi Price Rewind
Coverage is limited to the lesser of $200 or the amount charged to your card.  And the maximum coverage is $1,000 per calendar year.
I personally use Earny to completely automate my Citi Price Rewind claims.  It’s especially helpful for tracking price drops on Amazon!

Extended Warranty

By paying for an eligible item with the Citi ThankYou Premier card, you can extend the manufacturer’s warranty by an additional 24 months (total coverage between both the manufacturer’s warranty and extended warranty cannot exceed 84 months).
Protect Your Big Purchases With Citi’s Extended Warranty Coverage. Especially Expensive Electronics!
You can check the complete Guide to Benefits to check exclusions and to learn how to file a claim.
Travel Coverage 
When you pay for travel with your Citi ThankYou Premier card, including award flight taxes & fees, you’ll get these coverages:

Baggage delay – Get up to $100 per covered traveler if your bags are delayed 6+ hours
Trip delay – Get up to $500 per covered traveler to pay for meals and hotels if your trip is delayed 12+ hours
Trip cancellation & interruption – You may be reimbursed up to $5,000 per covered traveler per trip if the trip is cancelled or interrupted for an eligible reason

Having automatic travel protection is a fantastic perk that can save you a lot of money.  But hopefully you’ll never have to use it!

Is the Citi ThankYou Premier Card Worth the Annual Fee?
The card has a $95 annual fee, which waived for the first 12 months.  This means you can test out the card for ~11 months and decide if it’s worth keeping for another year.
If you spend a lot in the bonus categories, and like the ways to redeem your points, it’s worthwhile to hang on to this card long-term.  Or, if you want to keep a card with price protection and extended warranty coverage, this one makes it easy to use those benefits.
Does the Citi ThankYou Premier card have a foreign transaction fee?
No.
Who Is Eligible for the Citi ThankYou Premier Card?

Link:   Citi Rules Restrict Sign-Up Bonuses to Once per “Brand” Every 24 Months
Remember, Citi will NOT let you earn the sign-up bonus from more than one personal card of the same “brand” within 24 months.
Citi says:
Bonus ThankYou Points are not available if you have had a ThankYou Preferred, ThankYou Premier or Citi Prestige card opened or closed in the past 24 months.
So if it’s been less than 24 months since you opened or closed the Citi Prestige® Card, Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card, or Citi ThankYou® Premier Card, you aren’t eligible to earn the bonus.
Customer Support for the Citi ThankYou Premier Card
Citi has great fraud protection and monitor your accounts for suspicious activity.  Team member Jasmin has gotten texts to confirm if she made certain purchases.
And I’ve found hold times to be short when I’ve had to call Citi.  Every time, customer support has been thorough and professional, even when I’ve asked detailed questions about travel rewards or card benefits.
Credit Cards Similar to the Citi ThankYou Premier Card
If you’re just starting out with miles & points, or looking to open a card that earns transferable points, I recommend the Chase Sapphire Preferred.  That’s because it earns bonus points in similar categories, including 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel and dining.
If You Love to Travel, There Are Other Cards to Consider First, Like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Which Has 2 of the Same Bonus Categories
Also, you can also transfer your points to Chase’s excellent travel partners, like British Airways, Hyatt, or United Airlines.  And, like the Citi ThankYou® Premier, points are worth 1.25 cents each when you book travel through Chase.  Both cards even have the same $95 annual fee – and they’re both waived the first year.
If you want a super premium card with even more travel benefits, consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve.  It has a $450 annual fee.  But the outstanding perks can more than offset it, especially if you love to travel!
Bottom Line
We don’t know how long this best-ever sign-up bonus of 60,000 Citi ThankYou points after meeting minimum spending requirements will be available with the Citi ThankYou® Premier Card.  So if you’re interested, I recommend applying sooner rather than later!
Each point is worth 1.25 cents when you book travel through Citi.  So this offer is easily worth $750 toward travel.  And potentially much more when you transfer points to Citi’s travel partners, like Flying Blue or Singapore Airlines.
Remember, you’ll also have access to perks like Citi Price Rewind for price protection, and extended warranty protection.  Those can come in handy for big ticket purchases like expensive electronics!
The $95 annual fee is waived the first year.  And if you spend a lot in the bonus categories, which include travel, gas stations, dining, and entertainment, it could be worth keeping year after year.
The most similar card is the Chase Sapphire Preferred, which is the one I recommend for beginners.
You can apply here for the Citi ThankYou Premier card.  Will you take advantage of this valuable sign-up offer?

Chase Sapphire Preferred Review: I’ve Had This Card 5 Years. Here’s How to Get $1,000+ Worth of Travel

Scott:   I’ve had the Chase Sapphire Preferred card for over 5 years.  And I’ve used it all over the US, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, and Europe.  Here’s my personal experience.  I’ll also reveal the secrets to getting $1,000+ worth of travel from the sign-up bonus.  These insider tips can get you First Class flights, luxury hotel suites, and more.  Yes, really.

With My Chase Sapphire Preferred I Earn 2X Points on Fancy-Schmancy Cocktails. Then I Use My Points to Travel, Where I Drink More Fancy Cocktails
2018 Chase Sapphire Preferred Review  (My Personal Experience – Short Version)

You earn 50,000 amazing Chase Ultimate Rewards points when you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening the account.  I’ll show you tricks to get $1,000+ worth of travel from those 50,000 points.  Or instead, you can get $625 worth of travel with no brain-work whatsoever.  Or…turn the 50,000 points into $500 if you love cash.
There is a $95 annual fee.  But, awesomely, you do NOT have pay this in your first year!
Chase Sapphire Preferred has the BEST travel transfer partners.  I’ll explain more in the long version, but the transfer partners are how you’ll pay $0 for luxury hotel suites on the beach and pay ~$10 to fly to Hawaii, Europe, and more
Earning 2X points on restaurant and travel purchases is great.  (Chase points are often worth more than points you earn on other types of cards.)
Primary car rental insurance – Covers damage or theft to your rental car, when you pay for the rental with your card.  (This can save you BIG time.)
Trip delay reimbursement – Get up to $500 back per ticket when your trip is delayed more than 12 hours  (This is clutch.)
$0 foreign transaction fees (I HATE cards that tack on dumb fees just because I’m using their card outside the US)
A human answers the phone when you call customer support.  Those prerecorded menus (Press 1 if you would like to speak English, press 2 if you would like to talk about your childhood) drive me nuts!
The card itself is kinda cool — it’s metal
If you are a person who doesn’t pay credit card bills on time, do NOT get this card.  Because the interest rate is very high.  Do not charge more than you afford.  Do not pay bills late.  If you can handle that, this is a fantastic card.

Do You Qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred?
Now that you’re all excited, you want to make sure you can actually be approved.  Chase has the final word so the following is a mere guideline.
You have the best chance of being approved when you have excellent credit.  Your score is likely high enough if it’s 750+.  I probably wouldn’t recommend applying if your score is below 725, although you never know.
There are other factors Chase will use to determine if they want to bless you with this card.  They may consider your income, your banking relationship with them, etc.  Again, this is Chase’s card and have the final say on whether or not to let you have it.
That said, they created this card and bonus for a reason.  So don’t be shy!  When I was approved for my Chase Sapphire Preferred I had an 800 credit score (still do) and a middle class income.
Now Here’s Something Sad
If you’re in one of these 2 categories, you very likely will NOT be approved for the Chase Sapphire Preferred:
1. You have opened 5+ new credit cards from any bank within the past 24 months.  But wait, this does NOT count small business cards from AMEX, Bank of America, Chase, Citi, and Wells Fargo.
2. You already have a Chase Sapphire Preferred OR a Chase Sapphire Reserve card.
So do you qualify?  Great!  Now get ready to unlock some serious Big Travel with Small Money.
Apply here for the Chase Sapphire Preferred.
I Enjoyed Summer on the Beach in Europe by Using Points I Earned With My Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
3 Ways to Use Chase Ultimate Rewards Points
1.   Cash Back
I used to be a cash back person.  But then Million Mile Secrets showed me how to get double my money’s worth when using points for travel.  And now I’m Managing Editor of Million Mile Secrets.  So you can see the progression. 
50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points turns into $500.
You need at least 2,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points ($20) to get your cash back.  You can apply this as a statement credit or as a deposit in your bank account.
If you want to use your Chase Sapphire Preferred as a cash back card, you certainly can.  You’d earn 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar you spend on travel and restaurant purchases.  So that’s essentially 2% cash back in those categories.  And you’ll earn 1 point on every other dollar you spend, or basically 1% cash back.
I still use cash back cards.  But to me, using your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for cash back instead of travel is like using a Ferrari only to pick up groceries once a week.
Instead of Cash Back, I Now Use My Chase Points for Big Travel with Small Money! I Slept Comfortably on My Flight to Europe This Summer
2.   Select Nearly Any Flight, Hotel, Cruise, Rental Car
This is very easy.  And many of you will be very happy to use your points this way.  Heck, I still use my points this way sometimes!
You just log into the Chase Travel portal and pick your flight or hotel just like you do on Expedia.  Yes, the prices are the same or very close.  (But when booking rental cars or cruises, shop around.  Though many readers tell us they get great rental car prices through the portal.)
What’s cool about this method for booking airlines and hotels, is there are NO annoying blackout dates.  So if there’s a flight for sale, it’s yours with Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points nets you $625 worth of travel when you use their portal.
It’s very easy to book with the Chase portal.  You’ll see it looks very similar to booking on Orbitz or any other such sites.
If You Can Figure Out Travelocity or Orbitz, the Chase Travel Portal Is Just as Easy
In the screenshot above, you might notice that a $356.60 ticket does NOT cost 35,600 points.  That’s because your Chase Ultimate Rewards points are NOT worth just a penny!  They’re worth 1.25 cent each when you use your Chase Sapphire Preferred, so ticket prices are discounted 20% with points.
So, again in the screenshot, you’d use 28,528 points for this flight.  Would you rather turn those 28,528 points into $285.28?  Or into a $356.60 flight?  Or… into a flight to Europe?  But more on that in this next section…
3.   Transfer Your Points to Travel Partners (This Is How You Can Get $1,000+ Worth of Travel From 50,000 Chase Points)
This is where the magic happens.  Chase Ultimate Rewards points are the best points currency.  Because you can transfer to the best airline partners to get just about anywhere in the world.
Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfer at a 1:1 ratio directly to the following airlines:
Aer Lingus (Ireland, here we come!)
British Airways (Shh!  This is the secret to super cheap flights to Hawaii from the West Coast and cheap flights within Europe)
Flying Blue (KLM & Air France)
Iberia
Singapore Airlines (take their amazing First Class bed and champagne service to Japan or Australia)
Southwest  (No blackout dates + 2 free checked bags)
United Airlines (This is how I fly to Europe.  And I don’t fly on United Airlines, I use their terrific partners)
Virgin Atlantic
And they transfer to these hotel programs:
I Used 25,000 Points From My Chase Sapphire Preferred to Stay in a Room With a Jacuzzi Tub Overlooking the Ocean
Hyatt (the BEST use of your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for hotels.  This is how I stayed at the Hyatt Zilara all-inclusive on the beach for $0 per night instead of $500 per night)
Ritz-Carlton
Marriott
IHG
Quick example:  Transfer 50,000 Chase points to Hyatt.  Stay 2 nights at a hotel like the Grand Hyatt New York or Park Hyatt Vienna.  Oftentimes those luxury hotels cost over $500 per night!
Another quick example:  Transfer 26,000 Chase points to Aer Lingus.  Fly round-trip during the 8 months of “off-season” to Ireland.  There are non-stops from Boston, Chicago, New York, and more!  These flights often cost $1,000+.  Hint: Last-minute flights that would be expensive are a great deal with points!
After you get your card, come back here to Million Mile Secrets and we’ll show you step-by-step how to book your award flights with points.  Here are some real-life examples of how folks on our team have used their Chase points:

Keith flew First Class with his wife from Singapore back home to Los Angeles on their amazing honeymoon
I flew round-trip in Business Class to Europe this summer using 140,000 Chase points instead of cash
Meghan on our team is sometimes spontaneous!  And she wanted to jet to beautiful Belize.  But tickets were over $700!  So she transferred 35,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United Airlines instead of paying money

Here’s Our Team Member Keith With His Wife Liz Using Chase Points to Fly in the Incredible and Private Singapore First Class Suites
This works with hotels too.

Jason got a ~$3,259 All-Inclusive Resort stay for 65,000 Chase points (that he transferred to Hyatt).  He said it was the “best hotel points booking I’ve ever made.  [My wife and I] couldn’t have been happier or more relaxed when we left.  The service, food, and setting were top notch.”
I’ve stayed twice at a Hyatt all-inclusive on the beach using 25,000 Chase points per night instead of $500
Jasmin transferred 45,000 Chase points to Hyatt for a 3-night stay at the Hyatt Regency Paris Etoile.  (Notice the Chase Sapphire Preferred sign-up bonus is 50,000 points).  If she paid money instead of points, it would’ve cost her $800.  She loved the view of the Eiffel Tower from her room!

Team Members Jasmin, Emily, and I Have All Loved Our Various Visits to Paris! And We Got Heavily Discounted Travel Using Chase Points!
How to Earn Points With the Chase Sapphire Preferred
You earn 2X points on travel.  This includes airlines, hotels, Airbnb, campgrounds, car rentals, cruises, travel agencies, trains, taxis, ferries, toll bridges, parking lots, and more.
You earn 2X points on dining.  This includes any establishment that codes on your credit card bill as a restaurant.  In my experience I’ve earned 2X points at restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and fast food places both in the US and overseas.
Insider Travel Tip: Warsaw, Poland Is Amazing Restaurant City! I Earned 2X Chase Points With No Foreign Transaction Fees at the Delicious Port Royal in Hala Koszyki Food Hall
You earn 1 point per $1 on every other purchase.
Benefits of the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
I absolutely love the “extras” you get with this credit card.
No Foreign Transaction Fees
I hate cards that hit you with a junk fee when you use them outside the US.  That’s why I take my Chase Sapphire Preferred on all my international trips.  Plus it’s a Visa credit card so it’s accepted nearly everywhere.
Primary Car Rental Insurance
This covers damage due to theft or collision to your rental car, when you pay for the rental with your card.
Quick real-life experience:  Joseph on our team rented a car for nearly a month in Ireland.  He turned down the rip-off car insurance at the desk because it would’ve cost him $300!  He relied on the primary rental car insurance from his Chase Sapphire Preferred.  He scraped and dinged the car.  Avis tried to bill him $2,300 for this minor damage!  Thank goodness Chase completely took care of it.  And Joseph was in the clear.
Trip Delay Reimbursement
Get up to $500 back per ticket when your trip is delayed more than 12 hours or requires an overnight stay for expenses such as meals and lodging
Extended Warranty Protection
Extends the time period of the US manufacturer’s warranty by an additional year, on eligible warranties of 3 years or less.
Baggage Delay Insurance
Reimburses you for essential purchases like toiletries and clothing for baggage delays over 6 hours by passenger carrier up to $100 a day for 5 days.
Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card Worth the Annual Fee?
Absolutely.  First of all, your entire first year with the card is $0.  So it’s worth trying out to see how you like it.  Each year after it’s $95.  I’ve paid this fee 4 times because I ALWAYS get MUCH more than my money’s worth because of the points and perks.
Customer Support for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
It’s great.  I love that a human answers your call instead of one of those annoying robot menus.  Also, throughout the years I twice had fraudulent charges on my card.  And twice they quickly removed the charges and mailed me a new card without any problem whatsoever.
Credit Cards Similar to the Chase Sapphire Preferred
If the Chase Sapphire Preferred isn’t a match for you, these 2 competing cards are fairly similar:
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
Citi ThankYou® Premier Card
I like both of these and I have the Citi ThankYou Premier card.  I recommend getting the Chase Sapphire Preferred before you get those.  But really you can’t go wrong with any of the three.  But I do like the Chase Sapphire Preferred the most because its points are the most valuable.
Bottom Line
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is the #1 credit card for those of you who are pretty new to using points instead of cash for travel expenses.  I’ve kept my metal Chase Sapphire Preferred in my wallet for years because I love it.
Right now the sign-up bonus is 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points in your account after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening your card.
Apply here for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card.
What’s your Chase Sapphire Preferred review?  Would you recommend the Chase Sapphire Preferred to a friend who’s just starting out with using points for travel?

5 Best Marriott Beach Resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico

Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers.
The 100,000-point sign-up bonus offer on the brand new Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus is a great way to get award nights for a quick getaway at the best Marriott beach resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico!
You’ll earn 100,000 Marriott points after spending $5,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.  That’s more than enough for 2 award nights at top Marriott beach resorts!
Aruba, Grand Cayman, and the US Virgin Islands Have Great Marriott Hotels. Plan a Romantic Trip With Your Marriott Points, Like to the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino!
We’ll show you 5 hotels in the Caribbean and Mexico where you can stay with Marriott points!
Best Marriott Beach Resort

Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
French Leave Resort, Autograph Collection
Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort
JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa
JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa

Marriott and Starwood are in the process of merging.  Currently, you can transfer Starwood points to Marriott, or vice versa at a ratio of 1 Starwood point = 3 Marriott points.  So if you have Starwood points and need to boost your Marriott account balance, moving points between your accounts can help!
And Marriott is a Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer partner.  If you have one of these Chase credit cards:   Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Sapphire Reserve, or Chase Ink Business Preferred, you can instantly transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Marriott at a 1:1 ratio.  Just keep in mind you’ll typically get more value by moving points to other partners, like Hyatt or United Airlines.
Don’t forget, you’ll also get the 5th night free on any Marriott award stay!  So if you want to stay longer, it’s an excellent way to save 20% of your points!
100,000 Marriott Points Is Enough for Lots of Nights at Lower Category Marriott Hotels. Or Treat Yourself to 1 or 2 Nights at the Most Luxurious Marriotts!
It’s easy to use Hotel Hustle to find hotels for award stays because it shows you how many points you’ll need for your specific travel dates.  And show you if award nights are available at hotels, including Marriott!
Another option is AwardMapper.  But it’s not specific to travel dates and won’t search for available award rooms.
We haven’t personally stayed at these hotels, but they look terrific!  Let me know if you’ve had an experience with any of them!
Note:   Some Marriott hotels (especially resorts) add pricey resort fees to paid and award nights.  Before you book, check the hotel policy to decide if it’s worth it for you.  And here are my tips on how to avoid them!  We’ve noted in the examples which hotels add resort fees.
Marriott hotels include:

AC Hotels by Marriott
Autograph Collection Hotels
Bulgari Hotels
Courtyard by Marriott
Delta Hotels
EDITION
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott
Gaylord Hotels
JW Marriott
Marriott Executive Apartments
Marriott Hotels
Marriott Vacation Club
Moxy Hotels
Protea Hotels
Renaissance Hotels
Residence Inn by Marriott
Ritz-Carlton
Springhill Suites by Marriott
TownePlace Suites by Marriott

See Related:   Get free breakfast on your next stay with the American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts program!
Use the Sign-Up Bonus From the Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Card for a Tropical Beach Getaway
Link:   Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus 
1.   Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
The Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino is located on Palm Beach in Aruba, only ~20 minutes from the airport.  So you can start relaxing soon after you land!
Enjoy the White Sand Beaches, or Swim in the Adults-Only Pool at the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino
The hotel has an adults-only pool, 6 restaurants, and 2 bars (including a poolside bar), and a balcony for every room so you can take in the warm Caribbean breeze.
And, there’s a 24-hour casino on the hotel grounds in case you want to take a spin on the slots or try your best hand at poker. 
There’s so Much to Do Outside the Hotel, Like Diving, Biking, or Windsurfing!
During peak season, a 2-night stay costs over $900.  Or you could spend 90,000 Marriott points (45,000 Marriott points per night).  Folks on TripAdvisor gave this hotel nearly all 5-star reviews!
So the sign-up bonus from the Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus is more than enough for a weekend getaway!
2.   French Leave Resort, Autograph Collection
The French Leave Resort, Autograph Collection is located on Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas.  So it’s a super-short flight from the US East Coast!
If you’re looking for a tranquil, secluded spot, this is a great pick.  And standard “rooms” here are a spacious oceanview villa with a king bed, sofabed, and kitchenette.
Unwind in Your Own Private Oceanview Villa at the French Leave Resort, Autograph Collection
You can spend your days exploring the pink sand beach, relaxing by the pool, and taking a private boat tour.  Or treat yourself to an epic meal at the hotel’s 1648 Bar and Grille.
Pink Sand! Doesn’t This Look Amazing?
Durin peak times, room rates here can exceed $600 per night (which includes a $50 daily resort fee).  Or you could spend 45,000 Marriott points per night plus a $50 daily resort fee.
Resort fees are common for hotels in the Caribbean, so be sure to look for them!  The fee at this hotel includes sea kayak rental, snorkeling, golf cart and more.
But you can ask if they’ll reduce the charge if you don’t plan on taking advantage of the amenities.
3.   Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort
Nights at the Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort can cost over $600 (including a $50 daily resort fee).  But you’ll save a ton if you spend 45,000 Marriott points per night plus a $50 daily resort fee, which includes bicycle rental, welcome drink upon arrival, children’s beach toys, and additional perks.  It’s located on famous Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman, near Georgetown.
Check Out Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman! And, Save Over ~$1,200 on 2 Nights Here When You Redeem Marriott Points!
Reviewers on TripAdvisor have great things to say about the staff at this hotel.  And about the numerous activities for families, like Sting Ray City, Star Fish Point, and whale watching.
Million Mile Secrets Contributor Lyn and Her Family Got up Close and Personal With Stingrays on Their Spring Break Trip to Grand Cayman
And when you redeem 90,000 Marriott points for a 2-night stay here, you could save over $1,200!  That’s a fantastic deal!
Remember, Marriott is a 1:1 transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards.  So if you’re close to an award stay, you can easily and quickly top-up your account for a Caribbean getaway!
Check out contributor Lyn’s post about how she used miles and points for a Spring Break trip to Grand Cayman with her family.  And if you’re looking to book your own trip, this award booking post can help you decide which flights to take to the Grand Cayman.
4.   JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa
The JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa is located within the Hotel Zone in Cancun.  You’ll enjoy access to white-sand beaches and turquoise water off the coast.  And there’s lots to do in the area, like diving off Isla Mujeres, or visiting legendary Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza.
Enjoy the Pools at the Resort, or the Beautiful Beaches of Cancun! The 100,000 Point Sign-Up Bonus on the Chase Marriott Premier Plus Card Is Worth Over $700 Here!
This hotel can cost over $400 or 45,000 Marriott points per night.  So you can save $800+ when you redeem 90,000 Marriott points here.
Head to Playa Del Carmen and Explore the Beautiful Cenotes Like Emily!
You could use this hotel as a base for exploring the Yucutan Peninsula.  Emily visited Playa del Carmen and stayed in an Airbnb with her pals after flying into Cancun.  And team member Joseph spent time in Cancun, but was mostly blown away by the Cenote Ik Kil near Chichen Itza.
If you want to stay longer, consider mixing your Marriott award stay with a paid stay on Airbnb.  That way you get a 2-for-1 experience in Cancun (or any other destination on this list!).  Here are our tips on how to find a good and safe Airbnb rental.
5.   JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa
The JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa is located on the beach in Los Cabos.  Perfect for relaxing during a trip away to Mexico!
Have Your Pick of Pools, or Head on the Beach in Cabo. Enjoy Several On-Site Restaurants, Too! You Could Save $800+ on a 2-Night Stay Here
Folks on TripAdvisor love the service and modern look of this hotel.
Wander the Hotel Grounds to Find Several Interesting Works of Art in the Sculpture Gardens
Two nights here cost $800+ or 80,000 Marriott points.  So the 100,000 Marriott points you’ll earn with the Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus welcome bonus are worth well over ~$800!
Note:   There’s a $30 “service charge” per night for award bookings here.
There’s plenty to do in the area, like whale-watching, sailing, or scuba diving.  Team member Keith and his wife love Cabo because it’s so easy to get to with miles and points from their home in Los Angeles.
Bottom Line
You’ll earn 100,000 Marriott points after spending $5,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of opening the all-new Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus card.  The sign-up bonus is more than enough to get you a luxury getaway to the best Marriott beach resorts in the Caribbean and Mexico!
There are lots of outstanding Marriott hotels in the Caribbean and Mexico where you can get award stays.  100,000 Marriott points are enough for 2 nights at top-tier Marriott hotels, like the JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa in vibrant Cancun.  Or for a romantic weekend getaway in an oceanview villa at the French Leave Resort, Autograph Collection in the Bahamas for a more tranquil experience.
Let me know your favorite Marriott hotels in the Caribbean and Mexico!
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