6 Best Travel Credit Card for Beginners

Travel enthusiasts always look for the best travel credit cards to book free flights, hotel stays, and other travel accommodations with every purchase. The Best Travel Credit Card for Beginners helps you save money during travel spend. You can save more than $1,000 easily with these credit cards. These credit cards can be very helpful for travel bookings and planning your trip.

Consider your travel habits and spending habits while choosing the best travel credit card. If you prefer a particular airline or a hotel brand for travel then you should consider a co-branded credit card with that particular company. If you spend on various categories then go for a general-purpose travel credit card.

With so many options available to you, how do you know which credit card to choose? It could be sometimes tricky to choose the perfect travel credit card for you. Wandering which things should be kept in mind while choosing a perfect travel credit card?

We’ve curated this list of the top starter travel credit cards for beginners that match your needs. Take a look at these credit cards from no-fee, mid-fee, and high-fee credit cards.

Best Travel Credit Card for Beginners of December 2023

Credit CardAnnual FeeAnnual APRRewards Highlights
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card$9521.49%-28.49% (variable) 5x points on travel, 3X on dining and 2X on all other purchases
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card$9519.99% – 29.99% (variable) 5x miles on hotels and rental cars, 2x miles on everyday expenses
American Express® Gold Card$25021.24% to 29.24% (variable)4X points at restaurants worldwide, 4X points on groceries at US supermarkets, 3x points on flights
Citi Premier® Card$9521.24% – 29.24% (variable)3X points per $1 on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel, 3X points per $1 on all other purchases
Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card$018.24% to 28.24% (variable)unlimited 1.5 points per $1 on all purchases with no limit
Bilt World Elite Mastercard$021.24% – 29.24% (variable)1X points on rent payments, 2X points on travel expenses, 3X points on dining

Explore the Best Starter Travel Credit Cards

1. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the best travel credit cards for beginners due to its wide range of travel benefits and various redemption opportunities. This credit card is perfect for travel, rewards, and cash back. This credit card is a dream for frequent travelers who wish to spend on travel and dining categories.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card comes with a modest fee of $95 annual fee and offers you 5X rewards on travel purchases on Chase Rewards Ultimate Portal, 2X rewards on other travel purchases, and 3X rewards on dining.

This credit card offers a great welcome bonus of 60,000 bonus points on spending $4,000 in the first 3 months of card activation. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card has great reward redemption options which makes it the best travel credit card for beginners.

Annual Fee: $95.

Welcome Bonus: Get 60,000 bonus points if you spend, $4,000 on purchases in the first three months from the card activation. The bonus points become $750 when redeemed through the Chase Ultimate rewards portal.

Credit score: Excellent, Good

Why choose this credit card: Chase Sapphire Preferred is our top pick due to its various benefits in travel, rewards, and cashback categories. The cardholder gets 5x rewards on travel purchases through the Chase Reward online portal, 2X rewards on other travel purchases, and 3X rewards on dining including dining services. Also, the reward redemption opportunity makes this credit card stand out from others.

Key Benefits

  • Modest annual fee of $95.
  • Get 60,000 bonus points if you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from the account opening date. The bonus points become $750 when you redeem rewards through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Portal.
  • Enjoy 5x points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate towards the online portal.
  • Enjoy 2X points on all other travel purchases.
  • Enjoy 3X points on dining including delivery services take out and dining out.
  • Get 3X points on online grocery purchases (excluding Target, Walmart, and Wholesale Clubs).
  • Get 3X points on streaming services.
  • Earn 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.
  • Earn $50 statement credits for hotel stays for each account anniversary year.
  • Get 25% more value when redeemed for travel spends like airfare, hotels, car rentals, and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • No foreign transaction fee.
  • Get 5X points on Lyft rides.
  • Get access to DashPass which offers a $0 delivery fee and a lower service fee on all eligible orders for a minimum of one year.
  • Cardholders get Travel and Purchase coverage.
  • Earn high reward points on travel, dining, and other categories.
  • Get 60,000 bonus points.
  • No foreign transaction fee.
  • You can transfer points to travel partners at a 1:1 ratio rate.
  • Travel and Purchase Protection.
  • No intro APR.
  • Slightly high annual fee.

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2. Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is a great pick for beginner travelers due to its simple reward program. You get a straightforward earning structure in bonus and travel categories with this credit card.

Cardholders can earn 75000 bonus miles if you spend 4000 on purchases within the first 3 months from the credit card activation date. You can earn unlimited 5X miles on hotel and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. Also, get 2X miles per dollar on every purchase. You can redeem those miles for travel expenses like booking flights, hotels, and rental cars.

If you are a casual traveler who don’t want to carry a balance will find great value in this credit card.

Annual Fee: $95

Welcome Bonus: Earn 75,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of the credit card activation. You can earn 5x miles on hotels and car rentals booked through the Capital One Venture Travel Credit card and 2X miles on other categories.

Credit score: Excellent, Good

Why choose this credit card: If you want a simple travel reward credit card, then this can be a great pick for you. You can earn 5x miles on hotels and car rentals booked through the Capital One Venture Travel Credit card and 2X miles on other categories. It’s rewards and redemption options make this credit card work.

Key Benefits

  • Get 75,000 bonus miles if you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. These bonus miles equal to %750 in travel.
  • Enjoy unlimited 5x miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.
  • Enjoy unlimited 2x miles on the everyday purchase category.
  • You can redeem your miles for any travel purchases like booking a trip to Capital One Travel. These miles won’t expire for the life of the account and there is no limit to how many miles you can earn.
  • Get up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®.
  • Enjoy the lifestyle benefits of hotel stays, like a $50 experience credit, room upgrades, and more.
  • No Foreign transaction fee.
  • 24-Hour Travel Assistance Services.
  • High Reward Rate.
  • No foreign transaction fee.
  • 75,000 bonus miles.
  • Travel accident insurance.
  • Miles are easy to redeem.
  • $95 annual fee (high for beginners).
  • No intro APR.

3. American Express® Gold Card

American Express® Gold Card

American Express® Gold Card is a great choice, if anyone looking to leverage their everyday spending for excellent rewards. Idaho points on dining, restaurants, groceries, and flights. You can earn up to 90,000 Membership Reward Points as a welcome bonus.

You can own up to 4X points at restaurants worldwide, 4X points at groceries (up to $25,000 purchases per year) at U.S supermarkets, 3X points on flights booked directly from airlines or on amextravel.com.

The American Express® Gold Card is paired with $120 in annual dining spending, $120 in Uber cash (U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders). This credit card is a dream for foodies. This credit card has no foreign transaction which makes it a perfect travel credit card for beginners.

Annual Fee: $250.

Welcome Bonus: Earn up to 90,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $6,000 on purchases within the first 6 months of account opening.

Credit score: Excellent, Good

Why Choose this Credit Card: The Amex Gold Credit is a great choice, if you are looking for a reward travel credit card that offers good rewards on various categories. Cardholders can earn 4X points at restaurants and delivery services, 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com. Also, this credit card has no foreign transaction fee.

Key Benefits

  • Earn up to 90,000 Membership reward points, if you spend $6,000 on purchases within the first 6 months of account opening.
  • Enjoy 4X points at restaurants worldwide and delivery services in the U.S.
  • Enjoy 4X points on groceries at US supermarkets up to $25,000 purchases in a year.
  • Get 3x points on flights booked weekly with the airline or on amextravel.com.
  • Get 1X points on all other purchases.
  • Earn up to $120 dining credit of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Credit card at Grubhub.
  • Get $120 Uber Cash to your Uber account.
  • Get a $100 experience credit when you book a two-night minimum stay in the Hote Collection.

High travel rewards rates on everyday spending
Annual bonus credits
Baggage insurance
Airline and hotel credits

  • High reward on travel expenses and everyday spending.
  • Bonus 90,000 Membership rewards.
  • Cardholders get Airline and hotel benefits.
  • 3X points on flights booked directly or on amextravel.com
  • High annual fee.
  • Limited reward redemption options.

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4. Citi Premier® Card

Citi Premier® Card

Citi Premier® Card is a great choice for attractive welcome bonuses and easy-to-get reward points. Cardholders can earn thankyou points on a wide variety of purchases. Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 within the first 3 months of account opening.

Talking about reward points, you can earn 3X points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel, and hotels and 1X points on all other purchases. These points are redeemable for $600 in to form of gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com. Earn reward points on hotels and car rentals. Redeem your travel reward points on Citi Premier® Card’s ThankYou® Points for flights, hotels, cruises, and more.

Annual Fee: $95

Welcome bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 within the first 3 months of account opening. These bonus points are redeemable for $600 in gift cards or travel rewards.

Credit score: Excellent, Good

Why Choose this Credit Card: The Citi Premier® Card is a great credit card for every day and travel-related expenses. You’ll get 3X points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel, and hotel purchases. Also, get 1X points on all other purchases. There is no foreign transaction fee.

Key Benefits

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 within the first 3 months of card activation.
  • Enjoy 3X points per $1 on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel, and hotel purchases.
  • Enjoy 3X points per $1 on all other purchases.
  • Enjoy $100 annual hotel saving benefits.
  • You can use points for shopping on Amazon.com or Bestbuy.com.
  • There is no expiration or limit on the points that you earn.
  • Redeem reward points for $600 in gift cards or travel rewards at thankyou.com.

No foreign transaction fees
High reward potential
Issuer advertises requiring an “average” minimum credit rating

  • There is no foreign transaction fee.
  • High rewards on different categories.
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit
  • 60,000 thankyou points.
  • High annual fee as compared to benefits.
  • No intro APR
  • 29.24% variable annual APR.

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5. Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card (Best Travel Credit Card no Annual Fee)

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card is another great credit card for those looking for a travel reward credit card with no annual fee. This credit card has a simple reward program.

Talking about its rewards, you earn 1.5 points for every dollar spent everywhere, and every time with no limit on how much you earn. Enjoy 25,000 online bonus points as a welcome bonus.

The redemption process is hassle-free and fast. You can use reward points for travel expenses like flights, hotels, vacation packages, or rental cars. You can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase if you are a Preferred Rewards member of the Bank of America. This means you could earn 1.87 to 2.62 points for every $1 you spend everywhere.

Annual Fee: $0.

Welcome Bonus: Earn 25,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of credit card activation.

Credit score: Excellent, Good

Why choose this credit card: For beginners, this credit card is a great choice because it offers unlimited 1.5 points per $1 on all purchases every time without any limit. Get 25%-75% more points if you are a preferred member of the Bank of America. The best thing about this credit card, it is a lifetime-free credit card with no foreign transaction fee.

Key Benefits

  • Earn 25,000 bonus points, if you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of credit card activation.
  • Enjoy unlimited 1.5 points per $1 on all purchases with no limit on how much earn points.
  • You can redeem points for travel or dining purchases, such as flights, hotel stays, car and vacation rentals, and baggage fees.
  • Cardholders get 0% APR for 15 billing cycles. After that, an 18.24% – 28.24% Variable APR will apply
  • Earn 25%-75% more points if you are a Preferred member of the Bank of America. That means you can earn 1.87 to 2.62 points per $1 you spend, everywhere, every time.
  • This is a contactless credit card and simply tap to pay wherever you see the contactless symbol.

Earn uncapped rewards
Bank of America Preferred Rewards clients earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase
No foreign transaction fees

  • You earn uncapped rewards.
  • No annual fee, and foreign transaction fee.
  • Earn 1.5 points for every $1 spent everywhere.
  • Earn 25%-75% more if you are a preferred member of Bank of America.
  • No bonus categories.

6. Bilt World Elite Mastercard

Bilt World Elite Mastercard

The Bilt World Elite Mastercard is a unique credit card as compared to other travel credit cards due to the ability to earn points when paying rent and also offers good rewards on travel and dining. This credit card is a game changer because it does not have any annual fee and is ideal for frequent travelers who want to pay rent.

Earn 1X points on rent payments without the transaction fee up to 1,00,000 in each calendar year, 2X points on travel, and 3X points on dining. Also, earn 1X points on other categories. Redeem these report cards for a variety of categories through the Bilt portal or transfer them to hotels and airline partners, Pay for Amazon Purchases or use them to pay rent.

The $0 annual fee Bilt Credit Card is a great choice for renters to points on monthly expenses.

Annual Fee: $0.

Welcome bonus: None.

Credit score: Good, Excellent

Why choose this credit card: Many beginners struggle to pay their monthly rent because it involves fees but that’s not true with Bilt World Elite Mastercard. You earn 1X points on every type of rent payment without the transaction fees. You earn 2X points on travel and 3X points on dining expenses. Even you can earn just double points on rent day with 6X on dining, 4X on travel categories, and 2X on all other purchases except rent.

Key Benefits

  • No annual fee
  • Enjoy 1X points on rent payments with no transaction fee (up to 100,000 points each calendar year).
  • Enjoy 2X points on travel expenses like lights, hotels, rental cars, and cruises when booked directly with airlines, hotels, and car rental agencies.
  • Get 3X points on dining.
  • Get 1X points on other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fee.
  • World Elite Mastercard Concierge
  • Benefits of Lyf credits.
  • Cell phone insurance.
  • No annual and foreign transaction fees.
  • 1X point on rent payment without a transaction fee.
  • 2X points on travel and 3X points on dining.
  • Cell phone insurance and purchase protection.
  • No welcome bonus.
  • You have to do five card transactions per statement to earn points.
  • High regular APR.

How to choose the best travel credit card for beginners?

There are so many travel credit cards for beginners available in the market and choosing one credit card can be messy. However, it can be easy for you to select a credit card if you prioritize your benefits, spending habits, and requirements.

If you are looking for a beginner travel credit card then you should consider cards that offer flexible reward points with various redemption options such as hotel cards and airline cards.

First, identify your habits and decide which category you spend the most money in each month and go for a credit card that rewards you in those areas. Analyze your travel goals to narrow down the choices. Instant if you don’t travel frequently then you may go with a low annual fee credit card.

Also, analyze which credit card will offer you the best reward and benefits or a combination of both.

Bottom Line

If you travel frequently and love it, then getting a good travel credit card can make sense. These credit cards offer good reward points on travel and everyday expenses with various redemption options.

In this article, we have discussed the best travel reward credit cards ranging from low annual fees to high annual fees. Choose a credit card that fits your need, offer good rewards on travel expenses, and allow you to save money on everyday expenses.

If you are a beginner, take your time to research and analyze each card’s benefits and charges before going to apply.

FAQs

Which is the best travel credit card for beginners?

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the best travel credit cards for beginners due to its wide range of travel benefits and various redemption opportunities. This credit card is perfect for travel, rewards, and cash back.

Which is the best travel credit card no annual fee?

The Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card is one the best travel credit cards with no annual fee. you earn 1.5 points for every dollar spent everywhere, and every time with no limit on how much you earn

Which are the best starter travel credit cards?

These are the Best Travel Credit Cards for Beginners:
1. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (Best Overall)
2. Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
3. American Express® Gold Card
4. Citi Premier® Card
5. Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
6. Bilt World Elite Mastercard

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