We’ve simplified things with our “Best Of” rankings here. If you don’t have time to research cards, take advantage of our expertise! Need a primer on Rewards Cards? Check out Rewards Cards 101.
Don’t Let Offers Disappear – We’ve seen a LOT of offers come and go. Some offers have clear expiration dates, and others just vanish without warning. My advice: If you are ready for another card, and you know the card you want… Don’t delay!
Please note: You can support Travel Freely by using our partner links when you sign up for a card, which may earn us a commission. See full advertising disclosure below. If there’s a better link I can offer that will not earn commission, I will post the better offer. I hope that earns your respect and trust over time.
Highlights for April
1. Chase Sapphire Preferred sign-up bonus is up to 60,000!
The number one personal card got a little bit better. This offer just went into effect a few weeks ago. Keep in mind that the annual fee of $95 is NOT waived anymore. For some this change is not a huge increase in value. If you value Chase points as high as we do, then the simple math is that 10,000 extra points can be valued from $100-$250 in cash or free travel based on how you use the points. So trading $95 upfront for $100-250 is actually a pretty good deal.
2. Chase Ink Business cards with sign-up bonuses of 80,000 and 50,000 points.
There’s been a lot of hype (for good reason) around the increased offer for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card in the last few weeks. However, most people don’t realize there are two extra Chase cards they need to consider if they love the Chase Sapphire Preferred. It requires having a small business, which can be just a small side business. (Read “Am I Eligible for a Business Credit Card?”). The Chase Ink Preferred is still offering an 80,000 point bonus. I can’t believe this offer has lasted as long as it has. As a great alternative, if you can’t hit that $5,000 in spending, you could get the Chase Ink Cash card for a 50,000 point bonus and NO annual fee. (Note: While you must be under 5/24 to be approved, these cards do not count towards 5/24 rule.)
Here’s a HUGE TIP: If you own multiple businesses, you can get multiples of the same Chase Ink cards. That is a super simple way to earn a lot of Chase Ultimate Rewards points. Read more about this in the free PDF: Travel Freely’s Guide for Small Businesses. Email me with any questions ([email protected]).
Bonus Tip: Hit a sign-up bonus by paying your taxes with a credit card!
Did you know that the IRS allows you to pay your taxes with a credit card? Here is the IRS website that gives you three options, all with a third-party processor with fees under 2%. This is a no-brainer if a 2% fee will help you hit a sign-up bonus.
Best Credit Card Offers
At Travel Freely, we are all about maximizing great sign-up bonuses. It’s part of our approach to get the most amount of points in the least amount of time. Sign-up bonuses are the #1 way to rack up points WITHOUT traveling or spending a lot of money. Some people get more rewards in one bonus than they would in an entire year’s worth of spending on the same old card they’ve had for 5 years. Check out the BEST deals here.
- Overall Best Starter Travel Card: (NEW OFFER!) Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (60,000 points)
- Overall Best Business Travel Card: Chase Ink Business Preferred (80,000 points)
- Best Airline Business Card: Chase Southwest Premier Business (60,000 Miles)
- Best Hotel Personal Card: Chase World of Hyatt (50,000 points) or Chase Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant (100,000 points)
- Best Hotel Business Card: Amex Marriott Bonvoy Business Card (100,000 points)
- Best Travel Business Card With No Annual Fee: Chase Ink Business Cash (50,000 points / $500 bonus)
- Best Card for Easiest Redemptions: Capital One Venture Rewards (50,000 points)
- Best Cash Back Personal Card: Capital One Savor Cash Rewards ($500 bonus) or Chase Freedom Unlimited (3%!)
- Best Cash Back Business Card: Capital One Spark Cash for Business ($500 bonus for $5k spend)
- Best Ultra-Premium Card: Amex Platinum or Chase Sapphire Reserve
- Best Card for College Students/Grads: Chase Freedom or Discover It Student
- Bonus Business Offer: Alaska Airlines Business Card (40,000 miles)
Amazing Offers on Chase Business Cards
Ink Preferred – 80,000 Points (Learn More)
This is the best overall business card right now with a great sign-up bonus and 3X categories. It’s hard to beat the Chase Ink Business Preferred if you’re looking for an all-around business card that has flexible redemption options and can be combined with your personal Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
- Earns 3X rewards on travel, shipping, internet, cable, phone, and advertising with social media sites (up to $150K spend per year)
- Points worth 25% more when redeemed for travel
- Cell phone protection against theft or damage
- No foreign transaction fees
Incredible signup bonus for a no-fee card. An excellent companion to the Ink Preferred, personal Sapphire Reserve or Sapphire Preferred. Like the personal Sapphire cards, this card earns valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards.
- Earn 5X rewards (on first $25k spent) for phone, TV, internet, and office supply stores.
- Earn 2X rewards on gas and restaurants
- It has 0% APR for 12 months
- No Annual Fee
An all-round great cash back business card with no annual fee. It’s very simple. You earn unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases. Also has 0% APR for 12 months. This can be a great standalone card, but it is a excellent companion card to the Ink Business Preferred, Sapphire Reserve or Sapphire Preferred!
- Earn 1.5X rewards on Everything
- It has 0% APR for 12 months
- No Annual Fee
|Card||Sign-up Bonus||Spending Required||Annual Fee|
|Ink Preferred||80,000||$5,000 in first 3 months||$95|
|Ink Cash||$500||$3,000 in first 3 months||$0|
|Ink Unlimited||$500||$3,000 in first 3 months||$0|
Special Guide for Business Owners
What’s Our Criteria for the Best Cards?
- Value of points – Not all points and miles have the same value when it comes time to redeeming them. We take this seriously.
- Bonuses – Travel Freely seeks to maximize sign-up bonuses, so if great sign-up bonus offers come out, those cards will move up in the rankings.
- Type of Card – We value airline cards higher than hotel cards because airfare never goes on sale (whereas hotel sites can get you almost 50% retail rates). So airfare is the highest value in free travel. So, if we see airlines and hotel cards as similarly great deals, the airline card will get the edge in the rankings.
- Bonus spending requirement – We rank cards lower that require major spending as part of sign-up bonus. For example: Some cards offer 50,000 points if you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months, but then they’ll offer an add’l 25,000 points if you spend $10-15k in additional spending over the course of the year. This is considered major spending to us and we do not factor that in for the normal free traveler.
- Ease-of-use – Factors such as customer service and redemption fees play a factor in our rankings. We don’t want you to spend hours on the phone with poorly trained, off-shore customer service when you have a question about your card. Avoiding ridiculous fees for redeeming free travel are also important to us. For example: Frontier – You might get a “free flight” on Frontier Airlines with 20,000 points. But, you have to spend a reward redemption fee, bag fee for carry-on or checked luggage, and a seat booking fee. You might spend $96 in fees for a “free” $110 flight!
Here’s Help with Rewards Programs:
The three major bank rewards programs are Chase, Amex, and Citi. Here are some comprehensive guides to help you understand them better.
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