Additional perks: The card comes with 15 Elite Night credits each calendar year, which automatically qualify you for Silver Elite status. It also comes with a range of travel and purchase protections, including baggage delay insurance and trip delay reimbursement.
Foreign transaction fees: None
Current welcome bonus: Earn 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy points after you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first three months from account opening.
How to spend it: Spend an off-peak night at a Category 7 hotel, including The Cloudveil in Jackson Hole, The Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay, or The New York Edition.
Why we love it: The Citi Double Cash Card is easy to use, earning a flat two ThankYou points per dollar on every dollar spent, no matter what the category. Those can be cashed out in the form of a statement credit or check—or transferred to Citi’s travel partners for free trips.
How it earns points: The Citi Double Cash card earns two points per dollar on all purchases—one when you buy, and one when you pay your bill.
Additional perks: None
Foreign transaction fees: 3 percent
Current welcome bonus: None
How to spend your points: Once you’ve racked up 15,000 bonus points, transfer them to Turkish Airlines’ Miles&Smiles program for round-trip economy class tickets between anywhere on the U.S. mainland and Hawaii on Turkish Airlines’ partner United.
Why we love it: The EveryDay isn’t going to win any awards for its points-earning capabilities, but because AmEx’s transferable Membership Rewards points are so valuable, the card is worth picking up while you test the waters and decide whether to invest in a pricier AmEx product.
How it earns points: Earn two points per dollar at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 in purchases each year and one point per dollar after that. Additionally, if you use your card 20 or more times on purchases in a billing period, you’ll get 20 percent more points on those purchases.
Additional perks: The card features car rental loss and damage insurance, a Global Assist hotline for travel, and exclusive access to ticket presales (terms apply, enrollment required).
Foreign transaction fees: 2.7 percent
Current welcome bonus: Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first three months from account opening.
How to spend it: Transfer 9,000 points to British Airways to book short-haul domestic flights in economy of up to 1,151 miles—Seattle to Los Angeles, for example—on Alaska Airlines.
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