15 best travel credit cards (2022)

Gabriela Peratello
21.04.22
9 minute read

If you’re planning a long awaited getaway and want to make the most of your money on your trip, you might be wondering: what are the best credit cards for travel rewards?

Travel credit cards can help you save money, earn rewards and unlock other benefits — to start your search for the best credit cards for travel, read on.

And because credit cards aren’t right for everyone, we’ll also introduce the Wise travel debit card as a low cost way to save money when you travel or transact internationally.

📑 Table of Contents

move-and-manage-your-money

What are the best credit cards for travel?

Let’s get right into a review of the best credit cards for international travel. We’ll look at a range of cards to help you pick — whether you’re looking for the best credit cards for travel rewards, the best credit cards for air travel benefits, or a simple travel card for beginners.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Chase offers a range of different credit cards, including several of the best travel cards out there. For now, let’s look at the Chase Sapphire Preferred — one of the most popular cards from Chase.


Pros:

  • Great opening offer
  • Rewards can be used as statement credit or to book travel through Chase

Cons:

  • Annual fee applies
  • APR may not be the best available, depending on your circumstance

Travel credit cardChase Sapphire Preferred¹
Features
    Premium dining and travel rewards
Rewards
  • 5x total points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 3x points on dining at restaurants including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out
  • 2x on other travel purchases
Fees and charges
    95 USD annual fee; 16.24%–23.24% variable APR
Exchange rate

Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card

If you’re looking for a simple, entry level travel rewards card with no annual fee and rewards you can trade in for statement credit against travel spending, Bank of America’s Travel Rewards Credit Card might be for you.


Pros:

  • No annual fee and no foreign transaction fee
  • Introductory 0% APR offer

Cons:

  • Not the highest reward rate available
  • APR can be high after the opening offer

Travel credit cardBank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card²
Features
    No annual fee card — redeem points against travel spend or for cash or vouchers at a lower return rate
Rewards
    1.5 points for every 1 USD spent
Fees and charges
    No annual fee; 0% APR for 15 billing cycles, then 14.24% to 24.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Visa rate with no foreign transaction fee

Discover It Card

Discover’s travel card has good reward rates and flexible ways to redeem — but Discover doesn’t have such great acceptance rates outside the US as it does domestically, so you’ll want to double check it’s used in your destination.


Pros:

  • No annual fee
  • Great opening offer, doubling rewards accrued in the first year of use

Cons:

  • Discover isn’t accepted widely in all countries
  • As with all cards, penalty fees apply for late payments

Travel credit cardDiscover It Card³
Features
    No annual fee, unlimited earning, flexible reward options
Rewards
  • 1.5x miles on each dollar
  • opening offer doubles rewards accrued in the first 12 months of use
Fees and charges
    No annual fee: 0% APR for 15 billing cycles, then 12.24% to 23.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Discover exchange rate with no foreign transaction fee

American Express Gold Card

You won’t be surprised to hear, Amex has an impressive range of over a dozen travel credit cards. To start with, let’s look at the Amex Gold card — we’ll touch on an American Express business travel card a little later, too.


Pros:

  • Earn more rewards on categories like dining and groceries
  • Opening offers available

Cons:

  • Annual fee of 250 USD applies⁵
  • APR might not be the best available

Travel credit cardAmerican Express Gold Card⁴
Features
    Fee paid card with great earning opportunity on dining and groceries
Rewards
  • 4x on dining and groceries
  • 3x on flights
  • 1x on all other purchases
Fees and charges
    250 USD annual fee; 16.24% to 23.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Amex rate with no foreign transaction fee

Capital One Venture Rewards Card

Check out the Capital One Venture Rewards Card as a good balance between a relatively low annual fee for a fairly good earning opportunity.


Pros:

  • Good 2x reward earning possibility
  • Perks like free visits to airport lounges

Cons:

  • Annual fee of 95 USD applies
  • Variable APR can be on the high side

Travel credit cardCapital One Venture Rewards Card⁶
Features
    2x rewards on all spend — unlimited amount of earning potential
Rewards
    2x rewards for all spend — opening offers apply which can increase earning opportunity
Fees and charges
    95 USD annual fee; 16.24% — 24.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    No foreign transaction fee applies

Citi Government Travel Card

If you work for the military or one of a broad range of federal agencies you may be entitled to a Citi Government Travel Card. Here’s the lowdown.


Pros:

  • Can be made available even to people with lower credit scores, subject to approval
  • Extended payment terms on some account types

Cons:

  • Only available to people in select organizations

Travel credit cardCiti Government Travel Card⁷
Features
    Individually or centrally billed accounts for people in the military or federal agencies
Rewards
    Not issued as a rewards card
Fees and charges
    Late fees and interest might apply; speak to your Agency Program Coordinator to learn more
Exchange rate
    Check with your Agency Program Coordinator to learn more

Amex Delta Skymiles Card

If you fly regularly, a card which offers specific flight related benefits could be right for you. Check out the Amex Delta Skymiles Card as one popular option


Pros:

  • Delta reward perks like free additional baggage
  • 2x rewards on Delta products

Cons:

  • Fees apply annually after the first year

Travel credit cardAmex Delta Skymiles Card⁸
Features
    Delta reward card with good rewards on dining, groceries and Delta purchases
Rewards
  • 2x rewards on dining, groceries and Delta purchases
  • 1x on everything else
Fees and charges
    No annual fee for the first year, 99 USD annual fee after that⁹; 15.99% — 24.99% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Amex exchange rate with no foreign transaction fee

Chase Disney Visa

No annual fee and great opening offers if you’re a Disney fan.


Pros:

  • No annual fee + opening statement credit offer
  • Choice of card designs
  • Disney vacation financing available

Cons:

  • 3% foreign transaction fee applies
  • APR may not be the best available, depending on your circumstance

Travel credit cardChase Disney Visa¹⁰
Features
    Disney offers including vacation financing, spend rewards on Disney products at Disney locations
Rewards
  • 1% in Disney Rewards Dollars on all card purchases
  • Redeem toward most anything Disney at most Disney locations
Fees and charges
    No annual fee¹¹; 14.24% — 23.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Visa exchange rate with 3% foreign transaction fees

American Express Business Gold Card

If you travel regularly for work, a business travel card might suit you best. Here’s one popular offer from Amex.


Pros:

  • Earn more rewards on high spend categories
  • Opening offers available

Cons:

  • Annual fee of 295 USD applies
  • APR might not be the best available

Travel credit cardAmerican Express Business Gold Card¹²
Features
    Fee paid card with great earning opportunity on categories where your business spends more regularly
Rewards
  • 4x on the top 2 categories where your business spends the most
  • 1x on all other purchases
Fees and charges
    295 USD annual fee; 14.49% to 22.49% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Amex exchange rate with no foreign transaction fee

Chase Freedom Flex

If the travel you do tends to be road trips, then looking for a great reward card with bonus opportunities on gas spending could be a smart move. Check out the Chase Freedom Flex as one option.


Pros:

  • No annual fee
  • Opening 0% APR offer
  • Flexible rewards

Cons:

  • APR might not be the best available once the opening offer expires
  • Foreign transaction fee applies

Travel credit cardChase Freedom Flex¹³
Features
    Flexible card which allows you to earn up to 5% cashback on the categories you choose
Rewards
    Up to 5% cashback, including an introductory 5% gas spending offer
Fees and charges
    No annual fee¹⁴; 0% APR for 15 billing cycles, then 15.24% to 23.99% variable APR
Exchange rate
    3% foreign transaction fee applies

US Bank Altitude Connect Visa

Looking to get top rewards on hotels and car rentals, gas and more — this might be the card for you.


Pros:

  • No annual fee for the first year
  • Great reward opportunities on travel categories

Cons:

  • Annual fees kick in after 12 months

Travel credit cardUS Bank Altitude Connect Visa¹⁵
Features
    Reward card with top rewards on gas and travel
Rewards
  • 5x on travel booked through US Bank
  • 4x on gas, travel and EV charging
  • 2x on groceries and dining
Fees and charges
    No annual fee for the first year, 95 USD after that; 16.24% to 24.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    Visa exchange rate with no foreign transaction fees

Venture One Rewards Card from Capital One

If you don’t want to pay the annual fee on the Capital One Venture Rewards Card it’s good to know there’s also a fee free option, with a slightly less generous reward rate.


Pros:

  • No annual fee and a 0% APR opening offer
  • Redeem credits against travel spending

Cons:

  • Lower reward rate compared to some other, fee paid cards
  • Variable APR can be on the high side once it applies

Travel credit cardVenture One Rewards Card¹⁶
Features
    1.25x rewards on all spend — unlimited amount of earning potential
Rewards
    1.25x rewards for all spend — opening offers apply which can increase earning opportunity
Fees and charges
    No annual fee; 0% APR for 15 billing cycles, then 15.24% to 25.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    No foreign transaction fee applies

Chase Ink Business Preferred

Looking for a business travel card? Check out this option from Chase.


Pros:

  • Relatively low 95 USD annual fee
  • Get extra cards for your employees

Cons:

  • APR might not be the best available

Travel credit cardChase Ink Business Preferred¹⁷
Features
    Business card with top reward opportunities in travel and other business essentials
Rewards
    Up to 3x rewards on spending
Fees and charges
    95 USD annual fee; 16.24% — 21.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    No foreign transaction fees

World of Hyatt Credit Card

If you’re looking for a car which pays better rewards for hotel stays, you might want to pick one with a provider you often use — like Hyatt. Here’s the lowdown on the Hyatt credit card.


Pros:

  • Excellent rewards on Hyatt spending
  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons:

  • Annual fee applies
  • Relatively high APRs

Travel credit cardWorld of Hyatt Credit Card¹⁸
Features
    Hyatt card which has great rewards for Hyatt stays
Rewards
  • 9x rewards for Hyatt stays
  • 2x on many other categories
Fees and charges
    95 USD annual fee¹⁹; 16.24% to 23.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    No foreign transaction fee

American Express Platinum Card

If you don’t mind paying a higher fee to unlock more benefits a premium card like the Amex Platinum could be for you.


Pros:

  • Good reward opportunities — especially for travel and related spend

Cons:

  • High annual fee
  • APR can be on the high side

Travel credit cardAmerican Express Platinum Card²⁰
Features
    High reward opportunities for travel, plus lots of other cardholder perks
Rewards
  • 5x on flights and hotels
  • 1x on everything else
Fees and charges
    695 annual fee; 16.24% to 23.24% variable APR
Exchange rate
    No foreign transaction fee

Looking for something different? Try the Wise debit travel card

Pros:

  • Track your expenses wherever you are
  • Mid-market rate for every transaction

Cons:

  • If you’re looking strictly for a credit card, it might not be the best option for you
Travel cardWise travel debit card
Features
    No maintenance fees; app access to keep track of expenses and manage card features, hold over 50 currencies at the tip of your fingers
Rewards
    Discount on travel and accommodation
Fees and charges
  • No monthly or annual fees
  • No APR
Exchange rate

🌐 Order your Wise card now

Our selection of top 3 travel credit cards by category

Let’s look at some of the best options for travel credit cards for different requirements.

What are the best credit cards for travel rewards?

Looking for a good allrounder? Picking a card with a good reward rate on all spending might be your best bet. Take a look at these:

🏅 Capital One Venture Rewards Card
🏅 Chase Freedom Flex
🏅 US Bank Altitude Connect

What are the best credit cards for international travel?

For international travel, look for cards linked to providers you use regularly, like hotels, or ones with a great flat reward rate. Be sure to watch out for foreign transaction fees, though. Our favorite include:

🏅 Chase Sapphire Preferred
🏅 World of Hyatt
🏅 Bank of America Travel Rewards Card

What are the best credit cards for air travel benefits?

For specific air travel benefits you’ll likely want to either pick a card which is associated with your favorite airline, or one which offers better rewards on travel as a category, or more specifically on air travel, like:

🏅 Amex Delta Skymiles Card
🏅 Chase Freedom Flex
🏅 Amex Platinum Card

What are the best travel credit cards for beginners?

If you’re not totally sold on getting a travel credit card, check out options with no annual fee, like:

🏅 Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card
🏅 Discover It Card
🏅 Chase Freedom Flex


Spend internationally the hassle-free way with Wise

If you’re looking for the best travel cards for your needs, it’s good to know the answer might not be a travel credit card at all. Check out the Wise Multi-currency Account and card as a great way to spend internationally with no foreign transaction fees, and benefit from rewards on travel spend and ecommerce shopping, too.

Wise Multi-currency Accounts offer 50+ currencies, with currency exchange at the mid-market exchange rate, and a linked international debit card for convenient spending and withdrawals. Because it’s not a credit card you’ll be able to manage your travel budget easily, with no penalty fees or interest to pay — you can also get rewards as you spend.

🚀 Get started with Wise


How to compare travel credit cards

A quick final note on picking travel cards. While the best travel card for you will depend on your personal preferences and requirements, there are a few principles to stick to when you search:

  • Find a card with rewards you want to use — whether that’s cashback, statement credits against travel purchases, airmiles or more
  • Look for a good opening offer — there are lots available
  • Find the best earning rate on categories you spend in often
  • If you won’t use your card that often make sure points won’t expire

If a travel credit card is right for you, this guide should give you all you need to find the best travel credit card for your needs. However, don’t forget to shop around, and extend your search to alternatives like the Wise Multi-currency Account and card, to make sure you get the best possible deal.


Sources:

  1. Chase Sapphire preferred
  2. Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card
  3. Discover It Card
  4. American Express Gold Card
  5. Amex Gold Card fees
  6. Capital One Venture Rewards Card
  7. Citi Government Travel Card
  8. Amex Delta Skymiles Card
  9. Amex Delta Skymiles Fees
  10. Chase Disney Visa
  11. Chase Disney Visa pricing
  12. American Express Business Gold Card
  13. Chase Freedom Flex
  14. Chase Freedom Flex fees
  15. US Bank Altitude Connect Visa
  16. Venture One Rewards Card
  17. Chase Ink Business Preferred
  18. World of Hyatt Credit Card
  19. World of Hyatt card fees
  20. American Express Platinum Card

Sources checked on 04.21.2022

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