The following is the May 2018 edition of what we consider the Top 10 credit card products available at the moment. The list is based on a combination of factors, including current welcome bonus offers, daily earning potential, transfer partners and bonus categories, along with the ability to redeem.
1 – Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
Pros: If you’re in the market for Ultimate Rewards points, the Chase Ink Business Preferred is the best card out there. Cardholders get 80,000 points after $5,000 spent in the first 3 months. If you like earning points at an accelerated rate in categories like travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services and advertising, this card will get you 3X points. This is a great, solid card to have if you want a large sign-up bonus, generous category bonuses, and a reasonable $95 annual fee.
Cons: The spending requirement might scare some people away, along with the fact that this is a business card.
2 – Chase Iberia Plus Credit Card
Pros: Recently, the Iberia Plus Card’s sign-up bonus increased to 100,000 points. That’s 25,000 points higher than the initial offer, which was already generous. You’ll earn 50,000 Bonus Avios after $3,000 spent within first 3 months, plus 25,000 Bonus Avios after $10,000 spend within your first year. Plus a further 25,000 Bonus Avios after you spend $20,000 total on purchases within your first year from account opening. More importantly, this card has some seriously impressive benefits. Best of all? 5/24 reportedly does not apply to this card!
Cons: Once again, the spending requirement is pretty high for the average consumer. Of course, there are ways to meet it without going into debt. If you still can’t manage to spend $20,000 in a year, at least the first 50,000 Avios is attainable.
3 – The Business Platinum Card from American Express
Pros: The Business Platinum Card continues its winning streak with a 75,000 point sign-up bonus after a combined $20,000 spent in 3 months. This card has a lot of great long-term benefits that worth paying the $450 annual fee on. Cardholder earn 5x points on flights and hotels booked through AmexTravel, plus 50% more points on purchases of $5,000 or more. The $100 TSA Pre-Check/Global Entry fee every four years isn’t too shabby either, along with the $200 airline fee credit. Best of all, this card gets you access to the exclusive Centurion Lounges. Amex really walks the walk with this card.
Cons: The spending requirement is high! Personally? I can off-set it via Amex Offers, so it’s not a huge concern.
4 – Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card
Pros: Cardholders earn 60,000 points after spending $3,000 in 3 months. This is a great sign-up bonus to take advantage of if you’re aiming for the Southwest Companion Pass. It gets you more than halfway there.
Cons: Not everyone has great use for Southwest Rapid Rewards points.
5 – Chase Sapphire Reserve
Pros: The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers tons of great benefits on top of the 50,000 point sign-up bonus. You gotta love 3x points on dining and travel, along with the $300 annual travel credit.
Cons: The $4,000 spending requirement in the first 3 months might be tough for some people to pull off. Not to mention, the $450 annual fee is pricey – even with the various benefits factored in.
6 – Chase Sapphire Preferred
Pros: If you want all the points of the Chase Sapphire Reserve without the calories, the Sapphire Preferred is a tried-and-true fallback option. Yes, the spending requirement is still $4,000 in 3 months but the annual fee is more manageable at $95. You’ll also be earning 2x points on dinging and travel, which is always nice. Plus you’ll get 50% more value out of your Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal redemptions,
Cons: No long-term benefits of any kind to justify paying the $95 annual fee every year.
7 – Hilton Honors Aspire Card
Pros: Why aren’t more people excited about the Amex Hilton Honors Aspire Card? The 100,000 point sign-up bonus after $4,000 spent in 3 months may not seem like much, since a top-tier award night is 95,000 points. But the card makes up for it with benefits galore: Free Honors Diamond status, annual $250 Hilton resort credit, $250 airline fee credit, $100 on-property credit on 2-night stays, and lots more.
Cons: The annual fee on this card will set you back $450. But o quote Chuck Rhoades, “Worth it.”
8 – Barclay AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite MasterCard
Pros: What’s so great about the Barclay AAdvantage Aviator Red Card is that the sign-up bonus is so easy to earn: 50,000 miles after first spend. This is very beneficial for people who can’t afford to meet large spending requirements but still want to earn lots of points. Barclays also runs lots of targeted promotions, enabling cardholders to earn additional miles and points in select categories. Cardholders also earn 10% of their redeemed miles (up to 10,000), which is a very nice bonus considering the card’s annual fee is just $95.
Cons: The card doesn’t have a whole lot of long-term perks, but that’s to be expected for a non-premium card.
9 – Barclays Arrival Premier World Elite Mastercard
Pros: The Barclay Arrival Premier World Elite MasterCard is great for big spenders. In addition to 2 miles per $1 spent on everything, cardholders earn 15,000 bonus miles on the first $15,000 spent. There’s an additional 10,000 bonus for the next $10,000. Essentially, this card earns 3% travel cash on the first $25,000. That’s pretty awesome! Cardholders also get a $100 Global Entry fee credit every 5 years.
Cons: The annual fee is $150.
10 – The Platinum Card from American Express
Pros: The sign-up bonus on this card remains 60,000 points after $5,000 spent in 3 months. The ongoing benefits are pretty swanky: Access to Centurion lounges, Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts, Starwood and Hilton Gold elite status, $100 Global Entry/TSA PreCheck fee credit every four years, $200 airline fee and $200 Uber credit every year. Plus, you’ll earn 5x points per $1 spent on flights and hotels through AmexTravel and flights booked directly with airlines.
Cons: The annual fee is $550, which is a bitter pill to swallow when you consider the Business version of the card costs $450 per year. Yes, you get $200 worth of Uber credits on this version, but not everyone makes use of it.
The obvious negative is the $550 annual fee, which is not waived. It was a real bummer when Amex increased the fee from $450 to $550 to justify the Uber credit. Not cool, Amex! But also, thank you for the Uber credit, which never go to waste. The spending requirement is also high – as you’d expect from such a highfalutin card: $5,000 in 3 months.
Which credit cards are you applying for this month?
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