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There’s no quicker and easier way to earn a large amount of miles quickly than with a new credit card. And before the holidays is the perfect time to get one, because it’s even easier than the rest of the year to meet the minimum spending required to earn signup bonuses.
Every month I post what I find are the best signup bonus offers out there. Over the past several months we’ve seen several that are new and bigger. As a result there are a bunch of great cards to sign up for.
Here are the cards I consider to have the very best signup bonus offers right now:
- Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card has an 80,000 point signup bonus after $5000 spend within 3 months. That can even be enough for a roundtrip business class award ticket between the US and Europe. (Chase points are super valuable because they transfer directly to a variety of airlines and hotels.)
It earns 3 points per dollar on travel — that’s airlines, hotels, rental cars, tolls, even Uber — and 3 points per dollar on shipping and advertising on social media and search engines, so great for anyone who advertises on Facebook or Twitter, or who spends money advertising with Google. It also comes with $600 protection against theft or damage when you use it to buy your cell phone. ‘5/24’ applies.
- Chase Sapphire Preferred Card lets you earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
With a $0 annual fee the first year, then $95, I suggest that as the number on card to get started with in miles and points. Get Sapphire Reserve later, perhaps, the card’s annual fee makes this the one to get first.
Points transfer to United, Hyatt, Southwest, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Singapore Airlines, Korean Air, Air France KLM, Marriott Rewards, IHG Rewards Club, and Ritz-Carlton. Probably the best all-around credit card, certainly for getting started in the hobby, and with a great signup bonus.
The card earns two points on travel and dining at restaurants and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases worldwide. The card has an introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95.
Transfer Points and Redeem for Singapore Airlines
Since in general Chase doesn’t approve this card for folks who have signed up for 5 or more new card accounts in the past 24 months, it’s the first card you should apply for.
- Chase Sapphire Reserve Card 50,000 point signup bonus after $4000 spend within 3 months; triple points on travel and dining; Priority Pass Select membership with free guests; $300 travel credit make this new Visa Infinite card from Chase with a $450 annual fee the most exciting new entrant of the year. 5/24 applies.
- British Airways Visa Signature® Card is offering a signup bonus of up to 75,000 Avios:
- Earn 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. Earn an additional 25,000 bonus Avios after you spend $10,000 total on purchases within your first year of account opening for a total of 75,000 bonus Avios.
If you spend $30,000 in a calendar year to earn a Travel Together Ticket good for two years which can double the value of your Avios on a single redemption for 2 people.
Chase’s 5/24 reportedly does not apply.
British Airways First Class
- Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard® has an offer for a limited time to earn 60,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. (Offer expired)
There’s a $0 annual fee the first year, then $95. Cardmembers receive one free checked bag and preferred boarding on American Airlines flights.
You also get 10% of your miles back (up to 10,000 rebated per calendar year) when you redeem miles.
There’s also a small business version of the card with a similar offer, the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard® will give you 60,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. It too has a $0 annual fee the first year, then $95.
Citibank doesn’t have a hard limit on the number of their cards you can have though of course how much credit they’ll make available for each person will vary. After you apply for one card they’ll consider another application from you 8 days later, but you can’t apply for more than 2 cards in 65 days.
- Barclaycard AAdvantage® Aviator™ Red World Elite Mastercard® 60,000 American Airlines miles after first purchase, $95 annual fee.
Cardmembers receive one free checked bag (on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to four companions traveling with you on the same reservation) and preferred boarding on American Airlines domestic itineraries.
Spending $25,000 on the card in a year will earn $3,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars. And like the personal Citi card you get 10% of your miles back (up to 10,000 rebated per calendar year) when you redeem miles.
Redeem AAdvantage Miles for Cathay Pacific
- The Platinum Card® from American Express offers 60,000 American Express Membership Rewards points after $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months with the card.
It’s also the card with the best benefits. The value proposition here is airline lounges and elite status. It comes with Hilton Gold, Starwood Gold (matches to Marriot Gold), and National Car Rental Executive status. It gets you into Centurion lounges, Delta lounges (when flying Delta), and gives you a Priority Pass card for lounge access. There’s a $200 airline fee credit, and an Uber credit up to $200. The card earns 5 points per dollar on purchases made directly with airlines. And this $550 annual fee card is now metal.
- Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card The signup bonus for this card lets you earn 80,000 Bonus Points after spending $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. You can also earn 7,500 bonus points for adding an authorized user to the account and making a purchase within the same 3 month period. Now that Marriott points transfer to Starwood, it’s the biggest offer for Starwood points as well. The card gives you a Category 1-5 hotel free night stay every year after your account anniversary date, and 15 elite night credits just for having the product. (Offer expired)
Starwood’s Al Maha Desert Resort – Base Room is a Standalone Villa With Private Pool
- Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN offers 50,000 Membership Rewards points after $5,000 spend on purchases with the card within your first 3 months of cardmembership.
American Express Points Transfer Directly to Etihad
- United MileagePlus® Club Card offers 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. (Offer no longer available)
Spending will earn 2 miles per $1 spent on tickets purchased from United and 1.5 miles per $1 spent on all other purchases.
This $450 annual fee card comes with United Club membership and travel benefits like first and second checked bag free when you use the card to purchase your ticket. It comes with priority check-in, security screening (where available), boarding and baggage handling.
- Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard® is offering 50,000 miles after $5000 spend within the first 3 months of cardmembership. This card comes with American Airlines Club membership — and it offers authorized user cards at no additional annual fee. Authorized users get access to American Airlines clubs as well. $40,000 spend on purchases that post to your account during a calendar year earns 10,000 elite qualifying miles. The card’s annual fee is $450.
- Targeted 100,000 point signup offer for Platinum Card by American Express. You can enter your information into the Creditcards.com CardMatch tool to see if you’re eligible.
Offer retrieved November 21, 2017
You won’t see it right away. You’ll first see ‘pre-qualified offers’ and you need to click the tab on the left side of your screen for ‘CardMatch Special Offers’ for this to come up
While you provide your social security number, the site is explicit in assuring “A soft credit check will be performed but it will not affect your credit score.” This one falls much lower on the list because not everyone can get it, but it’s worth checking to see if you can.
Think there’s a card that belongs on this list but isn’t here, leave a comment!