cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...

Estimate your FICO® Score range for free

FICO® Score Estimator

Auto Loans for ANY Credit Situation. Immediate Response.
Advertiser disclosure
Regular Contributor

Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...

I am doing some research for the future on travel credit cards and the problem is, i dont travel. Me and my wife would like to but may can go on a trip once in a year. Any advice for sign up bonuses and no expiration on points that can maybe fund a trip or at least help. My income is around 50k gross and i realize i may not be the ideal candidate for a travel card but thats why im asking you good people for suggestions. Annual spend through cards approximately 15-20k



Starting scores: 05/17/15 EQ-463, TU-487, EX-493
Current scores: 04/2017 EQ-628, TU-682, EX-669
Message 1 of 32
31 REPLIES 31
Epic Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...


@lakers0519 wrote:

I am doing some research for the future on travel credit cards and the problem is, i dont travel. Me and my wife would like to but may can go on a trip once in a year. Any advice for sign up bonuses and no expiration on points that can maybe fund a trip or at least help. My income is around 50k gross and i realize i may not be the ideal candidate for a travel card but thats why im asking you good people for suggestions. Annual spend through cards approximately 15-20k


For the less frequent traveler I would say something like CSP or Venture but really you have some good earning cash cards that you could almost operate the same way.

If you are looking for the room upgrade when you check in or something then a Marriott or SPG card might be good but otherwise with the spending and the amount of travel I don't think you will find the perks of many other things worth it.  Just earn the most cash possible and trade in once a year towards your trip.

Message 2 of 32
Regular Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...


@Creditaddict wrote:

@lakers0519 wrote:

I am doing some research for the future on travel credit cards and the problem is, i dont travel. Me and my wife would like to but may can go on a trip once in a year. Any advice for sign up bonuses and no expiration on points that can maybe fund a trip or at least help. My income is around 50k gross and i realize i may not be the ideal candidate for a travel card but thats why im asking you good people for suggestions. Annual spend through cards approximately 15-20k


For the less frequent traveler I would say something like CSP or Venture but really you have some good earning cash cards that you could almost operate the same way.

If you are looking for the room upgrade when you check in or something then a Marriott or SPG card might be good but otherwise with the spending and the amount of travel I don't think you will find the perks of many other things worth it.  Just earn the most cash possible and trade in once a year towards your trip.


Let's look at the CSP, for the 40k bonus is it true that the points go a lot farther than the 400 would? I always thought points for certain cards go farther than the same in a cash credit but i could be wrong



Starting scores: 05/17/15 EQ-463, TU-487, EX-493
Current scores: 04/2017 EQ-628, TU-682, EX-669
Message 3 of 32
Senior Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...


@Creditaddict wrote:

@lakers0519 wrote:

I am doing some research for the future on travel credit cards and the problem is, i dont travel. Me and my wife would like to but may can go on a trip once in a year. Any advice for sign up bonuses and no expiration on points that can maybe fund a trip or at least help. My income is around 50k gross and i realize i may not be the ideal candidate for a travel card but thats why im asking you good people for suggestions. Annual spend through cards approximately 15-20k


For the less frequent traveler I would say something like CSP or Venture but really you have some good earning cash cards that you could almost operate the same way.

If you are looking for the room upgrade when you check in or something then a Marriott or SPG card might be good but otherwise with the spending and the amount of travel I don't think you will find the perks of manyother things worth it.  Just earn the most cash possible and trade in once a year towards your trip.


As far as the Marriott and SPG cards, I don't think those give adequate status to get an upgrade.

 

lakers, do you fly Delta occasionally? Delta miles don't expire.

 

Also, you can keep miles/points in many programs from expiring if you use the airline's/hotel's portal to occasionally make a small purchase online. Lots of retailers participate. I mostly stay with IHG and have kept Marriott points alive this way.

Most spend: CSR, CFU, BBP
Rewards/AAoA ballast: CF, Discover, Costco, ED, Arrival, Double Cash
Perks: Schwab Platinum, IHG49, Hyatt75, Brilliant, Delta Platinum, Aviator Red
Bonus chasing / retention games: Savor, BCP
Message 4 of 32
Regular Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...


@wasCB14 wrote:

@Creditaddict wrote:

@lakers0519 wrote:

I am doing some research for the future on travel credit cards and the problem is, i dont travel. Me and my wife would like to but may can go on a trip once in a year. Any advice for sign up bonuses and no expiration on points that can maybe fund a trip or at least help. My income is around 50k gross and i realize i may not be the ideal candidate for a travel card but thats why im asking you good people for suggestions. Annual spend through cards approximately 15-20k


For the less frequent traveler I would say something like CSP or Venture but really you have some good earning cash cards that you could almost operate the same way.

If you are looking for the room upgrade when you check in or something then a Marriott or SPG card might be good but otherwise with the spending and the amount of travel I don't think you will find the perks of manyother things worth it.  Just earn the most cash possible and trade in once a year towards your trip.


As far as the Marriott and SPG cards, I don't think those give adequate status to get an upgrade.

 

lakers, do you fly Delta occasionally? Delta miles don't expire.

 

Also, you can keep miles/points in many programs from expiring if you use the airline's/hotel's portal to occasionally make a small purchase online. Lots of retailers participate. I mostly stay with IHG and have kept Marriott points alive this way.


I cant tell you the last time i have flown but i always preferred delta and american airlines or southwest. I like the ritz card but i dont think the physical card is reason enough to get it Smiley Happy



Starting scores: 05/17/15 EQ-463, TU-487, EX-493
Current scores: 04/2017 EQ-628, TU-682, EX-669
Message 5 of 32
Established Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...

I've had a few experiences with travel cards.  I can only provide the anecdotal evidence.

 

Hyatt: Their 2 free nights sign up bonus is awesome.  We've used one so far at a Cat. 5 and had an amazing time.  $75 AF waived year 1 is offset by the free Cat 1-4 annual night.  The points are worth a solid value.

IHG: Their 80k bonus is worth 2-3 nights at an okay hotel.  The free night at any of their properties for your annual $49 AF is excellent.  Points aren't worth much, but a solid card for the free night.

BoA Travel Rewards: I think they have a 20,000 point sign up bonus ($200).  Points don't expire.  If you bank with them, it's a worthwhile card due to no AF and a preferred rewards program.  You can redeem against any travel up to a year ago.  If you book through BoA Travel center, you get an extra 1.5 points for your trip, and it's powered by Orbitz, so they often have the best deals available just like Cheaptickets or Google Flights.

Capital One Venture: Honestly, I was hoping I'd like the card more... Flat 2% on all purchases that can be redeemed for travel in the last 90 days.  I thought they'd at least have some perks over the QS for the annual fee, but alas, after once the AF is set to hit, I'll be transferring my limit to QS and closing the account.

Amex ED: I like this card.  Amex Offers are great.  I have only travelled domestically, so the points haven't really been worth much to me.  I think I got a 1.25 to 1 redemption on my points or something, but the Amex offers make it worthwhile.

Message 6 of 32
Regular Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...


@HappyCamper123 wrote:

I've had a few experiences with travel cards.  I can only provide the anecdotal evidence.

 

Hyatt: Their 2 free nights sign up bonus is awesome.  We've used one so far at a Cat. 5 and had an amazing time.  $75 AF waived year 1 is offset by the free Cat 1-4 annual night.  The points are worth a solid value.

IHG: Their 80k bonus is worth 2-3 nights at an okay hotel.  The free night at any of their properties for your annual $49 AF is excellent.  Points aren't worth much, but a solid card for the free night.

BoA Travel Rewards: I think they have a 20,000 point sign up bonus ($200).  Points don't expire.  If you bank with them, it's a worthwhile card due to no AF and a preferred rewards program.  You can redeem against any travel up to a year ago.  If you book through BoA Travel center, you get an extra 1.5 points for your trip, and it's powered by Orbitz, so they often have the best deals available just like Cheaptickets or Google Flights.

Capital One Venture: Honestly, I was hoping I'd like the card more... Flat 2% on all purchases that can be redeemed for travel in the last 90 days.  I thought they'd at least have some perks over the QS for the annual fee, but alas, after once the AF is set to hit, I'll be transferring my limit to QS and closing the account.

Amex ED: I like this card.  Amex Offers are great.  I have only travelled domestically, so the points haven't really been worth much to me.  I think I got a 1.25 to 1 redemption on my points or something, but the Amex offers make it worthwhile.


i appreciate the feedback, ihg sounds nice, now to get the airline...lol. on the chase sapphire do the points not equate to more than what they are redeemed for cash?



Starting scores: 05/17/15 EQ-463, TU-487, EX-493
Current scores: 04/2017 EQ-628, TU-682, EX-669
Message 7 of 32
Established Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...

It really depends.  Honestly, with my experience with the Amex MR program, if it does it's not by much.

 

My reasons are as follows:

 

* Best value for points are often international flights for first class tickets

* Domestic short haul flights have been around 1cpp for me

* If you're short on points, buying them sucks.

* You get taxed on point transfers.

* You can't shop around for the best priced tickets. 

-- In a crude example, lets say you have a CSP.  You find a flight on United for $600 round trip. You redeem 45000 points for the flights (1.3 cpp), but you're taxed $30 for the points transfer.  Also, you could have purchased the same flight on Delta for flat $450. 

 

Again, that was a crude example.  You'll likely come out ahead, but when you factor in opportunity cost of not being able to shop around airlines and the taxes thrown in with transferring points, I suspect the (2.4 cpp) estimate is closer to (1.5-1.8 cpp).

 

Message 8 of 32
Regular Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...


@HappyCamper123 wrote:

It really depends.  Honestly, with my experience with the Amex MR program, if it does it's not by much.

 

My reasons are as follows:

 

* Best value for points are often international flights for first class tickets

* Domestic short haul flights have been around 1cpp for me

* If you're short on points, buying them sucks.

* You get taxed on point transfers.

* You can't shop around for the best priced tickets. 

-- In a crude example, lets say you have a CSP.  You find a flight on United for $600 round trip. You redeem 45000 points for the flights (1.3 cpp), but you're taxed $30 for the points transfer.  Also, you could have purchased the same flight on Delta for flat $450. 

 

Again, that was a crude example.  You'll likely come out ahead, but when you factor in opportunity cost of not being able to shop around airlines and the taxes thrown in with transferring points, I suspect the (2.4 cpp) estimate is closer to (1.5-1.8 cpp).

 


i saw a video on youtube a while back where it was a huuuuge difference thats why i was curious



Starting scores: 05/17/15 EQ-463, TU-487, EX-493
Current scores: 04/2017 EQ-628, TU-682, EX-669
Message 9 of 32
Valued Contributor

Re: Need help with a Travel card and i dont travel...

I think that you need to determine what airport(s) you will be flying out of, what airline(s) and hotels you prefer, before you can decide what card is best for you. Given that many of travel cards have high AF and are aimed at frequent traveller, you may want to consider a card like Venture that has a low AF and the "miles" can be liberally used on any travel expense regardless of airline or hotel chain.
CSR | Amex Platinum | EDP | QS (2)
Amex Blue Business Plus
Message 10 of 32
Advertiser Disclosure: The offers that appear on this site are from third party advertisers from whom FICO receives compensation.