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One of the dumbest things I did in the course of my travels was not using a credit card during the first SIX YEARS I was on the road. During that time I only used a debit card and I didn’t even have a credit card to my name.
While I managed to make it work, it was difficult at times. Things would have been so much easier, and I could have captured so many points if I had used a credit card when I started.
I have made up for lost time, and I now use several credit cards both when I travel and when I’m at home.
Chase Sapphire Reserve
This is one of the best travel credit cards on the market right now. In addition to getting 3 points per dollar spent on travel (excluding the $300 travel credit), you get a bunch of other perks as well which easily make up for the annual fee on the card. The annual fee is $450, but $300 of that is credited towards travel purchases. You will also get 50,000 points upon signing up after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first three months. As with all the credit cards I use, there are no foreign transaction fees.
Learn more about the Chase Sapphire Reserve card….
IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
This card is a no brainer. There is an $89 annual fee and one of the perks is that you can get a free night worth up to 40,000 points at any International Hotels Group property. If you are visiting a city with expensive rooms, $89 a night for a room is a great deal. The card also grants you IHG Platinum Elite status
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
If you find the $450 annual fee of the Chase Sapphire Reserve daunting, then you might be more comfortable with the Chase Sapphire Preferred. You can get 2 points per dollar spent on travel, no foreign exchange fees, and 60,000 points when you spend $4,000 in the first three months.
The Platinum Card® from American Express
This might be the best travel credit card on the market today, but it also has one of the highest annual fees. It has a bevy of perks including up to $200 airline fee credit to cover incidental fees, up to $200 annual Uber credits, up to $100 Saks Fifth Avenue credit, $250 Centurion and Sky Club lounge access, and a Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit worth $100. This is for more serious and upscale travelers.
Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.