Earning Rewards

The Travel Rewards for Students card has a very simple earning structure. All spending earns 1.5 points per dollar spent. While this is a simple earning structure, it’s not always the best. Other travel rewards credit cards may give anywhere from 2 to 5 points in certain categories, so take a look at your spending habits and decide what is the best card for you.

There is one place where you can earn extra points—you’ll get 3 points per dollar spent made through the Bank of America Travel Center. The travel center is powered by Expedia, so prices should be in line with what you will find online.  However, consider that you won’t earn hotel rewards or be able to utilize any status benefits.

Another big perk of the Bank of America Travel Rewards for Students card is the 25,000 bonus points if you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening – which can be redeemed for a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases

This card also has no foreign transaction fees, so you won’t have a problem earning points no matter where you travel around the world and points never expire.

Redeeming Rewards

Points earned by the Travel Rewards for Students card can be redeemed in a few different ways.

  • Cash: With a minimum of 2,500 points, you can redeem rewards for cash at a rate of 0.6 cents per point, so 2,500 points = $15. Cash Rewards are offered as a check or deposit into a Bank of America checking or savings account.
  • Gift Cards: Gift cards can be redeemed for with a minimum of 3,125 points, and redemption rates vary.
  • Travel Reward: The Travel Rewards for Students card is designed as a travel rewards card, so you get the best redemption rates by redeeming for a travel statement credit. Redeeming for a Travel Reward requires a minimum of 2,500 points, and points redeemed for travel rewards redeem at a rate of 1 cent per point, so 2,500 points = $25.

Unlike some other travel points, points earned with the Bank of America Travel Rewards for Students card are redeemed after the purchase. You have 12 months to redeem points for travel purchases made on the card. Bank of America is very generous with what they count as travel for the purposes of redeeming towards a travel reward:

  • airlines, hotels, motels, timeshares, trailer parks, motor home, and recreational vehicle rentals, campgrounds, car rental agencies, truck and trailer rental, cruise lines, travel agencies, tour operators and real estate agents, operators of passenger trains, buses, taxis, limousines, ferries, boat rentals, parking lots and garages, tolls and bridge fees, tourist attractions and exhibits like art galleries, amusement parks, carnivals, circuses, aquariums, zoos and the like.

This list is much more expansive than most cards, which count items such as theme park tickets as “entertainment”, not travel.

Rewards Potential

In order to determine the rewards potential of the Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card for Students, Forbes used a number of reputable sources to determine what the typical college student spends in a year. 

The Bank of America Travel Rewards for Students card offers a 1.5% rewards rate on all purchases. At a return rate of 1.5% on typical annual expenses of $13,640, the average college student could expect to earn rewards worth $204.60 back per year with the Bank of America Travel Rewards for Students Credit Card. This is in addition to the first-year welcome bonus.