Using a credit card that lets you earn miles on all your spending is one of the best ways to save money on travel. Just going about your regular purchases lets you earn miles which you can redeem for airline tickets and other types of travel.

Not all miles are equal though, and it's important to know exactly what you are getting before you apply for an air miles credit card. For example, some cards give you miles which are really just points that are worth much less when you convert them to actual airline miles.

If you want to earn the maximum travel for your spending (as a miles card user you probably do) you should look for cards that offer 1:1 miles transfer to frequent flyer programs. Some miles programs also let you get a lot more value when you redeem your miles in certain ways.

Credit CardFeaturesIntro APRRegular APRAnnual FeeWhy we like itWe least likeCredit RequiredRelated links
Chase Sapphire Preferred<sup>®</sup> Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

APPLY NOWAt Chase's secure website
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
APPLY NOWAt Chase's secure website

N/A

17.99% - 24.99% Variable

$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95

Why we like it
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs.
Excellent Credit

Credit CardFeaturesIntro APRRegular APRAnnual FeeWhy we like itWe least likeCredit RequiredRelated links
Limited Time Offer
Barclaycard Arrival Plus<sup>®</sup> World Elite Mastercard<sup>®</sup>

Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard®

Limited Time Offer
APPLY NOWAt Barclays' secure website
  • Limited Time Offer: Enjoy 70,000 bonus miles after spending $5,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase
  • Book travel your way—no airline, seat or hotel restrictions—and redeem your miles for travel statement credits
  • Get 5% miles back to use toward your next redemption, every time you redeem
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • International Chip and PIN for use at self-service chip terminals around the world
  • Miles don't expire as long as your account is open, active and in good standing
  • See Rates & Fees
APPLY NOWAt Barclays' secure website

0% intro for first 12 billing cycles following each BT that posts within 45 days of account opening

17.99%, 21.99% or 24.99% variable based on your creditworthiness

$89 (waived first year)

Why we like it
  • Excellent travel rewards program.
  • 0% intro APR for balance transfers for first 12 billing cycles following each BT that posts within 45 days of account opening.
We least like
  • No intro APR period for purchases.
Good/Excellent

Another potentially profitable source of value for any travel bargain hunter is the FlexPerks® program from U.S. Bank, which lets you redeem FlexPoints® for travel through its Travelocity powered site in a set of spending tiers. If you play your cards right, you can double the value of your points! For example 20,000 FlexPoints can be redeemed for up to $400 in travel, when the normal value of those points would be just $200. So if you redeem that amount for a $400 ticket, you are literally getting twice the value. You can also use cash along with points, so if your ticket costs $420 you can make up the extra $20 in cash rather than move into the next tier (30,000 points for between $401 and $600 travel) and lose value.

Credit CardFeaturesIntro APRRegular APRAnnual FeeWhy we like itWe least likeCredit RequiredRelated links
Chase Sapphire Preferred<sup>®</sup> Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

APPLY NOWAt Chase's secure website
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
APPLY NOWAt Chase's secure website

N/A

17.99% - 24.99% Variable

$0 Intro for the First Year, then $95

Why we like it
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs.
Excellent Credit
Limited Time Offer
Barclaycard Arrival Plus<sup>®</sup> World Elite Mastercard<sup>®</sup>

Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard®

Limited Time Offer
APPLY NOWAt Barclays' secure website
  • Limited Time Offer: Enjoy 70,000 bonus miles after spending $5,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on every purchase
  • Book travel your way—no airline, seat or hotel restrictions—and redeem your miles for travel statement credits
  • Get 5% miles back to use toward your next redemption, every time you redeem
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • International Chip and PIN for use at self-service chip terminals around the world
  • Miles don't expire as long as your account is open, active and in good standing
  • See Rates & Fees
APPLY NOWAt Barclays' secure website

0% intro for first 12 billing cycles following each BT that posts within 45 days of account opening

17.99%, 21.99% or 24.99% variable based on your creditworthiness

$89 (waived first year)

Why we like it
  • Excellent travel rewards program.
  • 0% intro APR for balance transfers for first 12 billing cycles following each BT that posts within 45 days of account opening.
We least like
  • No intro APR period for purchases.
Good/Excellent