September’s Cheaper Flights: 6 Travel Credit Cards with Good Bonuses

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Now that peak travel prices are coming to an end, it’s a great time to start looking for flights and credit cards that have lucrative bonus offers to help boost your travel perks. If you’re ready to check out credit card bonus offers to make travel more manageable this fall and winter (and beyond), we’ve rounded up 6 travel credit cards with good sign-up bonuses worth considering.

credit cards with super bonuses

Don’t get too fixated on the bonus

When you look for a credit card, especially credit cards with super bonuses, consider picking one that fits your travel lifestyle over the bonus itself. Choose a card that has spending categories that make sense for you.

For instance, if you have plans to fly internationally, look for a card that offers robust options for transferring points to partner airlines for international travel. Chase Sapphire Reserve has a number of partners that can easily get you to Europe and Asia, including a 1:1 ratio points transfer for:

  • Singapore Airlines
  • Aer Lingus
  • British Airways
  • United Airlines
  • KLM & Air France
  • Iberia
  • Southwest Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic

Perhaps travel means you often take long road trips with your friends or family. If that’s the case, a credit card that gives you miles or points on filling up at gas stations would be a great fit. Or, you may want to look at credit cards with car rental insurance.

Before you apply for a travel credit card

When you take advantage of the with super bonuses, there are a few things you should understand, especially if you’re new to the world of credit cards. For one, pay off your credit card bill in full after you meet the spending threshold.

In other words, if you need to spend $3,000 in the first three months of opening your account in order to receive the bonus, don’t let the balance linger. Doing so means you’re paying interest on that debt, which makes the bonus offer less lucrative, if not negligible.

The second thing to know is that you will likely need good to excellent credit for these bonus deals. If you’re working with a credit score lower than 700-ish, you’ll need to improve your score first.

A credit score of 750 or higher is ideal for applying for credit cards with awesome bonus offers.

OK, so now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, here are 6 travel credit cards with super bonuses.

1. Chase Ink Business Preferred

  • 80,000 bonus points offer is worth about $1,000 (when you book through Chase Ultimate Rewards)
  • 3X points on travel and business-related categories
  • Annual fee: $95

If you have a small business, the Chase Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card tops our list with a whopping 80,000 rewards points! However, the spending threshold is higher at $5,000 that you must meet within the first three months of account opening.

The card should be used for business, which is why the categories are geared to spending on things like office supplies, shipping purchases, cable, phone, Internet, and online subscriptions such as WordPress.

2. Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card

  • 60,000 Southwest points after spending $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening
  • 2X points on Southwest purchases
  • 6,000 Anniversary bonus points
  • No blackout dates
  • Get 2 free checked bags on every flight
  • No change or cancel fees
  • Annual fee: $99

The Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card is a terrific option because of their companion pass. You can designate a travel companion who flies free with you on all Southwest flights.

Of course, you need to earn points to get there. But the good news is that the 60,000 points will count towards the 110,000 Southwest Companion Pass qualifying points. You need to earn 110,000 points in one calendar year to get the pass. Not all points count toward qualification.

Tip: If you’re unsure about whether you can apply for a business credit card because you don’t technically have a business, read our article about business credit cards first.

3. Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard

  • 70,000 limited-time bonus offer (worth $700 in travel) if you spend at least $5,000 in the first 90 days
  • 2 miles per $1 on every purchase
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 5% miles back each time you redeem
  • Miles never expire (as long as your account is open, active, and in good standing)
  • Annual fee: $89 (waived the first year)
  • See 

The Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® allows you to earn 2X the points on every purchase, which is a pretty sweet deal.

The card is great for people who don’t want to deal with the hassle of looking up airlines and restrictions. They simply let you redeem your miles by giving you a statement credit (which means you get reimbursed).

4. Citi ThankYou Premier Card

  • 60,000 Citi ThankYou points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Redeemable for $750 in airfare at thankyou.com
  • 3X points on travel, including gas stations
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Annual fee: $95 (waived the first year)

The Citi ThankYou Premier Card is a great option if you plan on taking a lot of road trips since you earn 3X the points on gas purchases.

There are also no blackout dates for flights when you book through the ThankYou Travel Center. You can book anytime.

Like Chase, Citi partners with airline loyalty programs, including:

  • TrueBlue
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer

5. Chase Sapphire Reserve Card

  • 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of opening your account
  • 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • 3X points on restaurants worldwide
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Fee waived, worth $100
  • Complimentary airport lounge access (over 1,200 lounges, worldwide)
  • Annual fee: $450

I’m impartial to the Chase Sapphire Reserve® because I use it often. While the bonus points aren’t as high as some of the other cards listed in this article, the travel perks simply can’t be beaten.

I’ve fully taken advantage of applying for Global Entry, which means I breezed through SFO after many an international flight. It’s also nice to be able to chill inside an airport lounge when the airport is crowded. When I travel, I book flights through Chase Ultimate Rewards to earn 3X the points.

Over the last year, I’ve noticed that Chase constantly makes website design updates so it’s easier to use and book flights through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

6. Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

  • 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 on purchases after first 3 months of account opening
  • Can be redeemable for up to $625 in travel booked through Chase or a $500 statement credit
  • 2X points on travel and dining
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Annual fee: $95 (waived the first year)

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® is a solid travel credit card that caters to travelers. You can easily transfer your points to their travel partner programs, including:

  • Aer Lingus Club
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM
  • Iberia Plus
  • JetBlue TrueBlue
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards
  • United MileagePlus
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Bonus tip: If you don’t care to pay annual fees, check out a friend of these credit cards with super bonuses, the PenFed Pathfinder Rewards American Express Card.

Bonus: PenFed Pathfinder Rewards American Express Card

  • 25,000 bonus points (worth about $212) for spending $2,500 in the first three months of account opening.
  • 3 points per $1 spent on everything else
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • No annual fee
  • May need to pay a one-time $17 membership, must meet PenFed’s eligibility requirements

Conclusion of Travel Credit Cards with Super Bonuses

Whether you book travel for that much-needed fall getaway or book early for the holidays, credit cards with super bonuses can help offset the costs. It’s the easiest way to earn free flights and quickly rack up points. Just make sure to pay off the balance in full each month. Choose one that fits your lifestyle so you can use it often since most come with annual fees.

Claire Tak

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September’s Cheaper Flights: 6 Travel Credit Cards with Good Bonuses
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About the Author

Claire Tak
Claire Tak is an Oakland-based writer, traveler, and snowboarder. She writes regularly about credit cards, saving money, and traveling. Her work has appeared on FOX Business, Bloomberg and Forbes. Catch her shenanigans on clairesholiday.com.

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