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Credit cards for travel

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Credit card with travel perks and waive fees can save you money on your next vacation.

Whether you’re a regular traveler or planning a rare getaway, you need to find the right credit card for hotel, flight purchases and everything else. But you’re in danger of spending too much of your budget on currency conversion and foreign transaction fees.

This guide compares credit cards that are the best for travel and why you should find the right one for your next vacation.

Compare travel credit cards

Name Product Welcome Offer Rewards Annual Fee Filter values
75,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
7x points on Hilton Honors purchases, 5x at US restaurants, US supermarkets and US gas stations, 3x on all other purchases
$0
Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
60,000 points after spending $5,000 in your first 3 months
5x points on directly-booked flights or on flights and hotels on Amex Travel. 1x points on all other purchases
$550
Get 5x Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5x points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com. Rates & fees
35,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
3x points on directly-booked flights; 4x at restaurants; 4x at US supermarkets on up to $25,000 annually (then 1x points)
$250
35,000 bonus Membership Rewards® Points when you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
25,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 4 months
2x points on gas, groceries or airlines, whichever you spend the most on each month, 2x points on cell phone services and charities and 1x points on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($49 thereafter)
Earn 25,000 enrollment FlexPoints worth $375 in travel after spending $2,000 in the first 4 months. Rates & Fees
60,000 miles after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months, plus $50 after your first Delta purchase in the same timeframe
2x miles on Delta purchases and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
60,000 bonus miles after you use your new card to make $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
10,000 miles after spending $500 in the first 3 months
2x miles at US restaurants and on direct Delta purchases and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0
Earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
25,000 points after spending $2,500 in the first 90 days
3x points on travel or 4x points if you’re a PenFed Honors Advantage member and 1.5x points on all other purchases
$0
25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare and 1.5% for cash back
$495
Receive an annual $100 air travel credit toward flight-related purchases including airline tickets, baggage fees, upgrades and more.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare or cash back
$995
Earn 2% point value when redeemed for airfare or cash back through the Luxury rewards program.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare and 1% for cash back
$195
Enjoy unique excursions, privileged access to exclusive events and insider opportunities.
125,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
12x points on Hilton Portfolio spending, 6x at US restaurants, US supermarkets and US gas stations, 3x on all other purchases
$95
Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
50,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months
3x points on dining and travel after earning your $300 travel credit and 1x points on all other purchases
$450
Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $$4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months
2x points on travel and dining and 1x points on all other purchases
$95
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
40,000 miles after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
2x miles at restaurants, hotels and United and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Compare up to 4 providers

Compare different types of travel credit cards


Credit cards for travel

How a credit card are useful for travel

  • Live exchange rates. You could benefit from fluctuating exchange rates that change daily when USD depreciates against the currency of your destination.
  • Travel now, pay later. Some credit cards can provide up to 55 days interest-free on purchases and 0% introductory APRs when you open a new card. So you can spend, but save on interest and fees.
  • Rewards. Earn points for flights and cash back with rewards programs.

Things to note when using credit cards for travel.

  • Avoid cash advances. Using your credit card to get cash from an ATM can cost your high fees and interest rates. There is usually no interest-free days on cash advances.

No Currency Conversion Fee Credit Cards

One of the biggest fees you’ll pay when you travel are foreign exchange fees. These are fees that your credit card charges for each purchase you make while you’re out of the country — usually 3% of your purchase. This can really add up, especially if you plan on using your card a lot on your trip. There are lots of cards out there that waive that fee.

Name Product Foreign Transaction Fee Annual Fee Purchase APR Filter values
None
$0
17.99% to 26.99% variable
Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
None
$0
15.24% to 26.24% variable
Build your credit with no fees: Apply if you're new to credit or have a fair to good score.
None
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24%, 19.24% or 25.24% variable)
Earn 3% cash back on up to $10,000 in the first 12 months, then 1.5% on all purchases. See Rates and Fees.
None
$550
N/A
Get 5x Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5x points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com. Rates & fees
None
$250
See Rates & Fees
35,000 bonus Membership Rewards® Points when you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
None
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($49 thereafter)
16.24% to 26.24% variable
Earn 25,000 enrollment FlexPoints worth $375 in travel after spending $2,000 in the first 4 months. Rates & Fees
None
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
17.99% to 26.99% variable
60,000 bonus miles after you use your new card to make $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
None
$195
17.99% to 26.99% variable
Earn 75,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles after you make $3,000 in purchases on your new card within your first 3 months. Plus $100 after making a Delta purchase in the same time. Rates & fees
None
$450
17.99% to 26.99% variable
Earn 75,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles after you spend $5,000 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months. Rates & fees
None
$0
0% intro for the first 18 months (then 13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% variable)
An 18 months 0% intro APR period on both purchases and balance transfers, plus zero foreign transaction fees, makes this is a strong well-rounded card. See Rates and Fees
None
$0
12.99% to 17.99% variable
25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
None
$495
17.24% variable
Receive an annual $100 air travel credit toward flight-related purchases including airline tickets, baggage fees, upgrades and more.
None
$995
17.24% variable
Earn 2% point value when redeemed for airfare or cash back through the Luxury rewards program.
None
$195
17.24% variable
Enjoy unique excursions, privileged access to exclusive events and insider opportunities.
None
$149
15.99% to 25.99% variable
40,000 bonus LifeMiles after first card use
None
$95
17.99% to 26.99% variable
Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees

Compare up to 4 providers

Credit cards with travel benefits

Cards with travel rewards are designed with the traveler in mind can make you feel better about using your credit card for big purchases on your trip. There are many cards that offer 2x or 3x points on hotels, flights and other adventures on your trip. Use your points for cash back, your next flight or hotel stay and so much more.

High-end cards can get you access to exclusive airport lounges and hotel and flight upgrades. These cards often have high annual fees, so be sure you can make it worth it.

You’ll also find cards with travel insurance, covering you for missed flights, accidents or illnesses while you’re away. But credit cards are the best option for travel insurance. Find out more about the benefits of travel insurance with our guide.

Name Product Welcome Offer Rewards Annual Fee Filter values
75,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
7x points on Hilton Honors purchases, 5x at US restaurants, US supermarkets and US gas stations, 3x on all other purchases
$0
Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
60,000 points after spending $5,000 in your first 3 months
5x points on directly-booked flights or on flights and hotels on Amex Travel. 1x points on all other purchases
$550
Get 5x Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5x points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com. Rates & fees
35,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
3x points on directly-booked flights; 4x at restaurants; 4x at US supermarkets on up to $25,000 annually (then 1x points)
$250
35,000 bonus Membership Rewards® Points when you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
25,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 4 months
2x points on gas, groceries or airlines, whichever you spend the most on each month, 2x points on cell phone services and charities and 1x points on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($49 thereafter)
Earn 25,000 enrollment FlexPoints worth $375 in travel after spending $2,000 in the first 4 months. Rates & Fees
60,000 miles after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months, plus $50 after your first Delta purchase in the same timeframe
2x miles on Delta purchases and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
60,000 bonus miles after you use your new card to make $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
10,000 miles after spending $500 in the first 3 months
2x miles at US restaurants and on direct Delta purchases and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0
Earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
25,000 points after spending $2,500 in the first 90 days
3x points on travel or 4x points if you’re a PenFed Honors Advantage member and 1.5x points on all other purchases
$0
25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare and 1.5% for cash back
$495
Receive an annual $100 air travel credit toward flight-related purchases including airline tickets, baggage fees, upgrades and more.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare or cash back
$995
Earn 2% point value when redeemed for airfare or cash back through the Luxury rewards program.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare and 1% for cash back
$195
Enjoy unique excursions, privileged access to exclusive events and insider opportunities.
125,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
12x points on Hilton Portfolio spending, 6x at US restaurants, US supermarkets and US gas stations, 3x on all other purchases
$95
Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
50,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months
3x points on dining and travel after earning your $300 travel credit and 1x points on all other purchases
$450
Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $$4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months
2x points on travel and dining and 1x points on all other purchases
$95
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
40,000 miles after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
2x miles at restaurants, hotels and United and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
40,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Compare up to 4 providers

Intro APR

Credit cards that offer an interest free introductory period are great to get right before your trip. It makes the idea of “buy now, pay later” really work for you. Often credit cards offer a year or more of 0% APR, giving you the chance to pay down your balances after a big trip. But be careful — once your period is up, you’ll pay the high APR on your remaining balance.

Name Product Purchase APR Balance Transfer APR Annual Fee Filter values
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
$0
Earn a $150 bonus statement credit after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
$0
Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
$95
Earn $250 bonus cash back after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
0% intro for the first 18 months (then 13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 18 months (then 13.24%, 17.24% or 21.24% variable)
$0
An 18 months 0% intro APR period on both purchases and balance transfers, plus zero foreign transaction fees, makes this is a strong well-rounded card. See Rates and Fees
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24%, 19.24% or 25.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24%, 19.24% or 25.24% variable)
$0
Earn 3% cash back on up to $10,000 in the first 12 months, then 1.5% on all purchases. See Rates and Fees.
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.15% to 25.15% variable)
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.15% to 25.15% variable)
$0
Earn $150 in statement credit after you spend $1,200 on purchases within the first 90 days from account opening.
12.99% to 17.99% variable
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 12.99% to 17.99% variable)
$0
25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
11.99% to 17.99% variable
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 11.99% to 17.99% variable)
$0
2% cash back for all PenFed Honors Advantage members and 1.5% cash back on all purchases made with your card.
11.99% to 17.99% variable
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 11.99% to 17.99% variable)
$0
Earn 5x points on gas at the pump and 3x points on groceries. Earn 1x points on all other purchases.
9.24% to 17.99% variable
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 9.24% to 17.99% variable)
$0
Low APR on all purchases including cash advances.

Compare up to 4 providers

No annual fee credit cards

These no-frills cards don’t cost anything to have. If you only use your card for emergencies and small purchases no annual fee cards are a great pick. These card often offer no-interest days when you open an account, and you can find cards with low APRs. You won’t find travel benefits — like no foreign transaction fees — or rewards that other cards offer.

Name Product Annual Fee Balance Transfer APR Purchase APR Filter values
$0
17.99% to 26.99% variable
17.99% to 26.99% variable
Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
$0
17.99% to 26.99% variable
17.99% to 26.99% variable
Earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
$0
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
Earn a $150 bonus statement credit after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
$0
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 15.24% to 26.24% variable)
Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
$0
0% intro for the first 12 billing cycles (then 16.24% to 25.74% variable)
16.24% to 25.74% variable
When you spend $500 on your card within the first 90 days, you’ll receive a $150 cash back bonus. Rates & Fees
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.15% to 25.15% variable)
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.15% to 25.15% variable)
Earn $150 in statement credit after you spend $1,200 on purchases within the first 90 days from account opening.
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24%, 19.24% or 25.24% variable)
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 15.24%, 19.24% or 25.24% variable)
Earn 3% cash back on up to $10,000 in the first 12 months, then 1.5% on all purchases. See Rates and Fees.
$0
N/A
15.24% to 26.24% variable
Build your credit with no fees: Apply if you're new to credit or have a fair to good score.
$0
1.99% intro for the first 6 monthly billing cycles (then 16.24% to 22.24% variable)
1.99% intro for the first 6 monthly billing cycles (then 16.24% to 22.24% variable)
1% cash back to the nonprofits, K-12 schools, colleges and religious organizations of your choice.
$0
N/A
18.24% to 25.24% variable
Earn 3% cash back on travel and entertainment and 2% at restaurants on the first $1,000 spent on purchases each billing cycle (then 1%). Earn 1% on all other purchases.
$0
4.99% intro for the first 12 months (then 11.99% to 17.99% variable)
11.99% to 17.99% variable
Earn a $100 bonus after spending $1,500 on purchases in the first 90 days from account opening.
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 12.99% to 17.99% variable)
12.99% to 17.99% variable
25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 11.99% to 17.99% variable)
11.99% to 17.99% variable
2% cash back for all PenFed Honors Advantage members and 1.5% cash back on all purchases made with your card.
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 9.24% to 17.99% variable)
9.24% to 17.99% variable
Low APR on all purchases including cash advances.
$0
0% intro for the first 12 months (then 11.99% to 17.99% variable)
11.99% to 17.99% variable
Earn 5x points on gas at the pump and 3x points on groceries. Earn 1x points on all other purchases.
$0
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 17.24% to 25.99% variable)
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 17.24% to 25.99% variable)
Earn $150 cash back after spending $500 in the first 3 months from account opening.
$0
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 17.24% to 25.99% variable)
0% intro for the first 15 months (then 17.24% to 25.99% variable)
Earn 3% cash back on all purchases in your first year up to $20,000 spent. After that earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases.

Compare up to 4 providers

Gold and platinum credit cards

Find you use your credit card for most purchases? Gold and platinum credit cards offer greater perks like higher credit limits, rewards and complimentary insurance. If finding exclusive airport lounges and hotel upgrades are important to you, the high annual fees could be worth it. Annual fees for these cards range from $150 to $500 a year, and often you need a stellar credit score to qualify.

Name Product Filter values Rewards Purchase APR Annual Fee
5x points on directly-booked flights or on flights and hotels on Amex Travel. 1x points on all other purchases
N/A
$550
Get 5x Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5x points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com. Rates & fees
3x points on directly-booked flights; 4x at restaurants; 4x at US supermarkets on up to $25,000 annually (then 1x points)
See Rates & Fees
$250
35,000 bonus Membership Rewards® Points when you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare or cash back
17.24% variable
$995
Earn 2% point value when redeemed for airfare or cash back through the Luxury rewards program.
2x miles on Delta purchases and 1x miles on all other purchases
17.99% to 26.99% variable
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
60,000 bonus miles after you use your new card to make $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. Rates & fees
5x points on flights and prepaid hotels through Amex Travel, 1.5x points if you spend $5,000 on a single eligible purchase on up to 1 million additional points per year and 1x points on all other purchases
N/A
$595
Earn 50,000 points after spending $10,000 and an extra 25,000 points after spending an additional $10,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Rates & fees
4x points on two categories on up to $150,000 combined annually, then 1x points after that and on all other purchases
16.49% to 24.49% variable
$295
Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $5,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Gold Card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & fees
N/A
24.9% fixed
$35 to $99
All the benefits of Mastercard Gold for those with less than perfect credit.
N/A
9.99% fixed
$48
This secured card can help you rebuild your credit with an initial deposit of $200 to $1,000.
N/A
9.99% fixed
$49
Low fixed interest rates with no penalty rate.
N/A
9.99% fixed
$49
Fast, easy application process with no processing or application fees.
26.99% variable
$0
A no-annual-fee card for average credit. Earn a higher credit line after five on-time payments.
2x miles on American Airlines, dining, and gas and 1x miles on all other purchases
18.24% to 26.24% variable
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($99 thereafter)
Earn 50,000 AAdvantage® bonus miles after you spend $2,500 in the first 3 months.
2x miles on American Airlines, gas and select business categories and 1x miles on all other purchases
17.99% to 25.99% variable
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($99 thereafter)
70,000 AAdvantage® miles after making $4,000 in purchases in first 4 months of account opening.

Compare up to 4 providers

Bottom line

Choosing a credit card your your vacation depends much on your spending habits and how much you plan to use your cards. You’ll find the most savings with cards that waive foreign transaction fees. Always compare credit cards to find the best deal before opening a credit card.

Frequently asked questions about travel credit cards

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