Planning a holiday trip is never easy. But with the coronavirus pandemic still in full swing, booking your travel plans can be even more difficult this year. You have the usual challenges, like finding a flight or hotel before someone else reserves it, but now you also have additional worries such as health and safety. Additionally, there’s also the uncertainty that your trip could be canceled or delayed because of the virus.
All of these things make planning traveling a headache. But one thing that can make things easier (besides staying home) is booking your trip with a travel rewards credit card.
These credit cards can help you find the sweet spot between affordable tickets and hotels and a holiday trip you’ll actually enjoy. Plus, some credit cards even offer insurance against delays, cancellations, baggage, and more.
Check out The Motley Fool’s top choices for travel rewards credit cards that will help you save on seasonal travel this year.
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
When it comes to value, nothing beats the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card. For a short time only, Capital One is extending an incredible 100,000 miles sign-up bonus. When you sign up, you can earn 50,000 miles when you spend $3,000 or more in the first three months, plus an extra 50,000 when you spend at least $20,000 within the first year.
When you redeem your miles for travel, each point is worth .01 cent, making the 100,000 bonus worth about $1,000. Additionally, you can use your miles with one of Capital One’s travel affiliates.
While 100,000 bonus miles is an excellent deal, how can it help save on your holiday trip? After all, meeting a $20,000 spending requirement before the end of the month is hardly realistic. However, Capital One will apply your Venture Miles to any travel-related purchases you spent in the last 90 days. That could help you reach the minimum spending limit for the 50,000 bonus miles, which you can redeem for $500 for travel. And if you’re a big spender, you could qualify for the rest of the sign-up bonus to pay for this year’s holiday trip, too.
American Express Membership Rewards
American Express offers multiple ways to save on this year’s holiday trip, but two of their best deals can provide serious discounts on your next hotel reservation:
- Qualifying customers with a Membership Rewards card can receive $75 back when they spend $250 or more at participating Marriott Bonvoy locations from now until the end of this year.
- Eligible American Express Platinum Card carriers can earn $150 back when they spend $800 or more on a prepaid Fine Hotels and Resorts reservation with AmexTravel.com until December 7, 2020.
To check if you qualify and can sign up for these deals, visit the Amex Offers & Benefits page on your American Express online account.
Citi Prestige Card
If you frequently stay at hotels — whether for work or leisure — you may want to consider the Citi Prestige Card. This card comes with some of the best hotel savings available — when you reserve a three-night hotel stay, you can get your fourth night free. You can enjoy this perk two times per year at participating hotels you can book through Citi’s Thank You Rewards portal.
In addition, you can also receive $250 each year to apply for any travel expense, plus airport lounge access and credit for Global Entry/TSA PreCheck. If you need to book a room for your holiday travels, this credit card can help you save a considerable amount on your trip. However, as one of Citi’s best travel cards, it does have a $495 annual fee. But if you’re a frequent traveler, your rewards can easily offset this cost.
Airline Credit Cards
When it comes to holiday trips, traveling light is easier said than done. You’ll probably want to bring gifts for your loved ones, and of course, you’ll need room in your bags for the trip home. The last thing you want is to worry about making sure everything fits, but considering how expensive checked bags can be, it might be your only option.
However, airline credit cards are one way to avoid these steep charges. Many airlines have at least one card that waives checked bag fees for cardholders and at least one companion, such as:
- Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Card
- Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard
- Delta SkyMiles Gold American Express Card
- United Explorer Card
Travel rewards credit cards are a great way to save more during your holiday trip. Many cards like those on this list have special sign-up bonuses and discounts on tickets or hotels. Plus, you can apply any travel points to reserve your trip for even more savings.
- Daly, Lyle. “4 Credit Card Offers to Save Money on Your Holiday Travels.” The Motley Fool, 12 Nov. 2020, www.fool.com/the-ascent/credit-cards/articles/4-credit-card-offers-to-save-money-on-your-holiday-travels/.