credit card reward points

How Much Are Credit Card Reward Points and Miles Worth? A Guide To Loyalty Program Value

Credit card rewards programs offer consumers an enticing opportunity to maximize their everyday spending by earning points, miles, or cashback that can be redeemed for various rewards. Whether purchasing groceries, dining out, or paying utility bills, these programs turn routine transactions into potential savings and travel opportunities.

The allure of earning free travel, upgrades, and exclusive access to sales or events encourages cardholders to strategically use their cards for purchases they would be making anyway. With a well-chosen rewards card, consumers can reduce travel costs and enjoy premium benefits that enhance their spending power and lifestyle.

But how much are these points and miles worth? Credit card reward points, miles, and hotel loyalty points can have different values for different programs, and understanding value can be challenging unless you know a lot about the program.

We will outline the 13 most popular rewards programs, offer a potential value estimate for members who spend a reasonable effort trying to maximize their rewards, and then show you what we think is the best credit card available to earn rewards for that program.

Credit Card Rewards Program Point Value

Credit Card Rewards ProgramCash or Statement Credit Value*Potential Value*
American Express Membership Rewards0.602.00
Capital One0.501.75
Chase Ultimate Rewards1.002.15
Citi Thank You Rewards1.001.75
*Value in cents

American Express Membership Rewards

american express membership rewards

The American Express Membership Rewards Program is a versatile and expansive loyalty platform for holders of select American Express cards. Depending on the card, members earn points for every dollar spent, with opportunities to accrue points at accelerated rates in categories like travel, dining, and business expenses.

The points earned are extraordinarily flexible; they can be redeemed for various options, including travel bookings directly through the American Express Travel website, gift cards, shopping, and statement credits. One of the most valuable features of the program is the ability to transfer points to a plethora of airline and hotel partners, typically on a 1:1 basis, maximizing potential travel benefits.

The program occasionally offers transfer bonuses, which enhance the value of points when moved to partner programs. American Express also provides exclusive access to ticket presales and premium events, adding a layer of luxury to its benefits. This wealth of options and the potential for high-value redemptions make the Membership Rewards Program particularly appealing to those who seek to maximize the returns on their credit card spending.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Amex Platinum Card

Our Rating: 4.5

★★★★

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Welcome Offer

Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points

Est. Value

Up to $1,600

Annual Fee

$695

APR

See Pay Over Time APR Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent, Good

Rewards: When booking travel directly with American Express, cardholders will earn 5x membership reward points for every dollar spent.

The Platinum Card® from American Express signals status like few other credit cards. Cardmembers earn exclusive perks, high everyday rewards, and a massive upfront welcome offer.

1x points
On all other eligible purchases
1x on other purchases
5x points
Airfare
5x points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel, on up to $500,000 on these purchases each calendar year
5x points
Hotels
5x points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Excellent annual credits
  • Lounge access
  • Up to 5x points

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit

Capital One

capital one rewards

The Capital One Rewards Program is a flexible and straightforward rewards system designed for Capital One credit card holders. This program allows users to earn unlimited rewards on every purchase, with no expiration on the points as long as the account remains open.

The rewards can be redeemed in several ways, including for travel bookings via Capital One Travel, where users may find significant value, gift cards, merchandise, or statement credits against previous purchases. Cardholders can also transfer points to several airline and hotel loyalty programs, often enhancing the value of these points for frequent travelers.

Some Capital One cards also offer tiered rewards categories, allowing cardholders to earn extra points on dining, entertainment, and grocery purchases. The program’s simplicity and lack of restrictive conditions make it an attractive option for consumers looking for flexible and easy-to-use rewards without the hassle of navigating complex rules.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Capital One Venture

Our Rating: 4.5

★★★★

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Welcome Offer (Terms Apply)

Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 Miles

Est. Value

Up to $1,312.50

Annual Fee

$95

APR

19.99% – 29.99% Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent, Good

Rewards: Earn 5x miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 2x miles on other purchases.

The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers elevated rewards on every purchase. There’s also an excellent welcome offer, a reasonable annual fee, and there are no foreign transaction fees. It’s a great card for everyday use and travel.

2x miles
All eligible purchases
2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
5x miles
Hotels
5 Miles per dollar on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Up to 5x miles

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit
App StatusDateCredit ScoreBureauCredit Limit
Approved07/11/2023
691
Experian
$5,000

Chase Ultimate Rewards

chase ultimate rewards

The Chase Ultimate Rewards Program is a highly acclaimed rewards platform for holders of select Chase credit cards. This program allows cardholders to earn points on every purchase, with enhanced rates in categories such as travel, dining, and grocery shopping, depending on the card.

Points can be redeemed for various options, including travel bookings through Chase’s dedicated portal, where they can be worth more, gift cards, cash back, and even purchases made through partners like Amazon and Apple. Like others, one of the benefits of the Ultimate Rewards program is its flexibility in points transfer; members can transfer their points at a 1:1 ratio to numerous leading airline and hotel loyalty programs.

Additionally, the program often runs promotions that provide extra incentives and bonuses, boosting point accumulation and offering even greater value to consumers. This makes the Chase Ultimate Rewards Program particularly attractive to those looking for versatile and lucrative rewards options in their financial toolkit.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Our Rating: 4.9

★★★★

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 75,000 bonus points

Est. Value

Up to $1,612.50

Annual Fee

$95

APR

21.49%-28.49% Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent, Good

Rewards: Earn 5x points on travel purchased through Chase. 3x points on dining, select streaming services, and online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs). 2x points on other travel. 1x points on other purchases.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card might be the best bang for your buck among travel credit cards. Your Chase Ultimate Rewards points get a 25% boost in value when redeemed for travel; the welcome bonus is worth slightly less than the Chase Sapphire Reserve®‘s, and the annual fee is about 20% of the Reserve. You even get a $50 hotel stay credit when you book through Chase, making the net cost even lower.

1x points
On all other eligible purchases
1x points on all other purchases
2x points
Travel
2x points on all other travel purchases
3x points
U.S. supermarkets
Earn 3x points on online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs)
3x points
Streaming services
Earn 3x points on select streaming services
3x points
Dining
3x points on dining
5x points
Travel
5x points on travel purchased through Chase Travel(SM)

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points
  • Up to 5x points

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • High APR
  • Requires good credit
App StatusDateCredit ScoreBureauCredit Limit
Approved08/03/2023
872
Not Provided
$19,500
Approved04/19/2023
737
Equifax
$16,000
Approved04/19/2023
747
Experian
$16,000
Approved04/19/2023
747
TransUnion
$16,000
Approved11/11/2023
800
Not Provided
$16,800
Approved04/18/2023
790
Experian
$17,300
Approved05/21/2023
703
Experian
$17,300
Approved04/04/2023
735
Equifax
$17,300
Approved04/04/2023
825
Experian
$17,300
Approved07/06/2023
735
Experian
$5,000
Approved07/06/2023
745
Equifax
$5,000
Approved07/06/2023
755
TransUnion
$5,000
Approved10/19/2023
720
Not Provided
$19,500
Approved06/14/2023
759
Experian
$6,000
Approved04/06/2023
897
Not Provided
$23,800
Approved04/14/2023
765
Experian
$7,200
Approved04/14/2023
777
Equifax
$7,200
Approved04/14/2023
777
TransUnion
$7,200
Approved10/23/2023
745
TransUnion
$5,000
Approved10/03/2023
761
Equifax
$18,000
Approved10/03/2023
767
Experian
$18,000
Approved10/03/2023
774
TransUnion
$18,000

Citi ThankYou Rewards

citi thankyou rewards

The Citi ThankYou Rewards Program is a versatile and comprehensive loyalty scheme that Citibank offers its credit card users. Participants earn ThankYou Points through credit card purchases, which can be redeemed for various rewards, including travel, gift cards, merchandise, and cash equivalents like statement credits.

The program is particularly noted for its flexibility in point usage; points can be transferred to airline loyalty programs. Additionally, cardholders can use points directly to book flights, hotels, and more through Citi’s travel portal, sometimes with added benefits like discounted travel rates. Certain Citi cards offer enhanced earning rates in categories such as dining, travel, and supermarkets, making accumulation faster and more tailored to individual spending patterns.

The program also periodically offers promotional bonuses that allow additional points earnings or savings on redemptions, providing savvy consumers with opportunities to maximize their rewards efficiently.

Citi Strata Premier® Card

Citi Strata Premier

Our Rating: 4.7

★★★★

Citi Strata Premier® Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 75,000 bonus points

Est. Value

Up to $1,050

Annual Fee

$95

APR

21.24%- 29.24% Variable

Credit Req’d

Good 670 – 739, Excellent 740 – 850

Rewards: Earn 10x points on hotel, car rentals and attractions booked through Citi through June 30, 2024. 3x points at gas stations, restaurants, hotels, air travel, and U.S. supermarkets. 1x points on all other purchases.

The Citi Strata Premier® Card is a good choice if you want a travel rewards card without a staggering annual fee. You even get a $100 hotel credit (to use on a $500 stay) once per calendar year. You can transfer your travel points to travel partners such as Jet Blue and Virgin Atlantic, and you get points on gas, restaurants, and groceries.

1x points
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 1X points on all other purchases
3x points
U.S. supermarkets
Earn 3X points per dollar spent at U.S. supermarkets
3x points
Airfare
Earn 3X points per dollar spent on air travel
3x points
Hotels
Earn 3X points per dollar spent on other hotel purchases
3x points
Dining
Earn 3X points per dollar spent at restaurants
3x points
Gas
Earn 3X points per dollar spent at gas stations and at EV charging stations
10x points
Select Categories
Earn a total of 10 ThankYou® Points per $1 spent on hotel, car rentals and attractions booked through CitiTravel.com

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit
App StatusDateCredit ScoreBureauCredit Limit
Approved12/29/2023
814
Equifax
$12,000
Approved12/29/2023
829
Experian
$12,000
Approved12/29/2023
830
TransUnion
$12,000
Approved04/07/2023
804
TransUnion
$3,000
Approved04/07/2023
808
Experian
$3,000
Approved04/07/2023
816
Equifax
$3,000
Approved12/07/2023
791
TransUnion
$11,000
Approved12/07/2023
808
Equifax
$11,000
Approved12/07/2023
808
Experian
$11,000
Approved01/10/2023
803
Experian
$11,000
Approved11/04/2023
722
TransUnion
$7,000

Airline Rewards Program Mile Value

Airline Rewards ProgramPotential Value*Member Benefits & Tier Levels
Jet Blue TrueBlue1.50True Blue Details
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards1.40Rapid Rewards Details
United Airlines MileagePlus1.40MileagePlus Details
Delta Skymiles1.25SkyMiles Details
American Airlines AAdvantage1.50AAdvantage Details
*Value in cents

Jet Blue TrueBlue

The JetBlue TrueBlue Rewards Program is designed to offer frequent flyers a user-friendly and rewarding experience. Members earn points based on the dollar amount spent on flights and the fare type, with no blackout dates on any JetBlue-operated flight. Points are also accumulated through purchases with program partners, including hotels, car rentals, and everyday shopping.

One of TrueBlue’s best features is pooling points with family and friends. Members can redeem their points for flights, upgrades to ‘Even More Space’ seating, or vacation packages without worrying about expiration dates, as TrueBlue points do not expire.

The program includes Mosaic status, which is reached through either point accumulation or flying a set number of segments. Mosaic status offers additional benefits such as expedited security, early boarding, and waived cancellation fees, making it particularly attractive for frequent travelers who value simplicity and efficiency in their loyalty rewards.

JetBlue Business Card

Jet Blue Business

Our Rating: 4.0

★★★★☆

JetBlue Business Card

Welcome Offer

Earn up to 60,000 bonus points

Est. Value

Up to $900

Annual Fee

$99

APR

21.24% – 29.99% variable Variable

Credit Req’d

Good to Excellent 670 – 850

Rewards: 6x points on eligible JetBlue, 2x points at office supply stores and at restaurants, and 1x points on all other purchases.

The JetBlue Business Card is perfect for frequent flyers of the airline. It offers a nice up-front welcome bonus and a modest annual fee.

1x points
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 1x on all other purchases
2x points
Office Supplies
Earn 2x points at office supply stores
2x points
Dining
Earn 2x points at restaurants
6x points
Jetblue Purchases
Earn 6x points on eligible JetBlue purchases

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Up to 6x points

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • High APR
  • Requires good credit
  • JetBlue has a smaller footprint than some other airlines
App StatusDateCredit ScoreBureauCredit Limit
Approved09/06/2022
750
Not Provided
$2,000
Approved10/26/2021
744
Equifax
$1,000
Approved01/05/2022
777
TransUnion
$1,000
Approved11/15/2023
755
Not Provided
$1,500

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards

The Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Program is a straightforward and flexible loyalty program catering to casual and frequent flyers. Members earn points based on the price of their flights rather than the distance flown, with additional points accrued for purchasing higher fare classes such as Business Select.

These points never expire and can be redeemed for free flights on any Southwest flight without blackout dates or seat restrictions, offering exceptional flexibility. The program also includes tier levels—A-List and A-List Preferred—providing additional benefits such as priority boarding, check-in, and accelerated points earning. A-List Preferred members also enjoy free in-flight WiFi.

One of Rapid Rewards’ coolest features is the Companion Pass, which allows a member to choose one person to fly with them for free (excluding taxes and fees) for the duration of the pass after meeting specific criteria. This feature, combined with the program’s ease of use and generous redemption options, makes Rapid Rewards highly appealing to those who value simplicity and practical benefits in their travel loyalty programs.

Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card

Our Rating: 4.4

★★★★

Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 60,000 points

Est. Value

Up to $840

Annual Fee

$99

APR

21.49% – 28.49% Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent, Good

Rewards: Earn 3x points on Southwest purchases, 2x points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare services, and on Rapid Rewards® hotel and car rental partners.

The Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card offers excellent value for a reasonable annual fee for business owners who frequently fly with Southwest. You can earn a great welcome offer and elevated rewards on some travel and transit categories.

1x points
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 1 point per $1 spent on everyday purchases.
2x points
Hotels
Earn 2x points on Rapid Rewards® hotel partners.
2x points
Rental Cars
Earn 2x points on Rapid Rewards® car rental partners.
2x points
Transit
Earn 2x points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare services.
3x points
Southwest Purchases
Earn 3x points on Southwest Airlines® purchases.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit

United Airline MileagePlus

The United Airlines MileagePlus Rewards Program is tailored to frequent flyers. It offers many opportunities to earn miles through flights on United, United Express, and its airline partners and through everyday activities linked to its broad network of retail, hotel, and car rental partners.

Members can redeem their accumulated miles for airline tickets, cabin upgrades, hotel stays, and car rentals, providing various options for using points. The program is structured with multiple membership levels: Premier Silver, Premier Gold, Premier Platinum, and Premier 1K, each providing enhanced benefits that improve with status. These benefits include priority boarding, free checked baggage, reduced fees, and increased earning potential for more miles per dollar spent. For those reaching the highest tier, perks extend to guaranteed seating on oversold flights and exclusive airport lounges.

MileagePlus is renowned for its generous award availability and the ability to use miles for experiences such as exclusive dining and unique travel adventures, making it a favored choice for travelers looking to maximize their loyalty rewards.

United℠ Business Card

United Business Card

Our Rating: 4.5

★★★★

United℠ Business Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 75,000 bonus miles

Est. Value

Up to $1,050

Annual Fee

$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $99

APR

21.99% – 28.99% Variable

Credit Req’d

Good, Excellent

Rewards: Earn 2x miles per dollar spent on dining, gas, at supply stores, and on all United purchases.

1x miles
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases.
2x miles
Office Supplies
Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at office supply stores.
2x miles
United Purchases
Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on purchases from United® including tickets, Economy Plus®, Inflight food, beverages, Wi-Fi and other United charges.
2x miles
Dining
Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on dining, including eligible delivery services.
2x miles
Gas
Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at gas stations.
2x miles
Transit
Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on local transit and commuting.

The United℠ Business Card is perfect for any business who loves to fly United and is interested in a big upfront welcome offer and strong everyday rewards program.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • High APR
  • Requires good credit

Delta SkyMiles

The Delta SkyMiles Rewards Program is Delta Air Lines’ frequent flyer program. It allows travelers to earn miles through flights and everyday activities such as dining, shopping, and partnered services like car rentals and hotels. Members accumulate miles that do not expire, providing flexibility in planning and redeeming for future travels. These miles can be redeemed for flight tickets, seat upgrades, and more across Delta’s extensive global network and airline partners.

The program includes membership tiers—Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond Medallion—each offering increasing benefits like priority boarding, free baggage check, and exclusive airport lounges. The higher tiers enhance the travel experience with complimentary upgrades and increased earning rates for miles. SkyMiles can also be used for experiences such as VIP concerts and exclusive culinary events, making it a versatile option for both leisure and business travelers.

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card

Delta Skymiles Reserve

Our Rating: 4.5

★★★★

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 60,000 Bonus Miles

Est. Value

Up to $750

Annual Fee

$650

APR

20.99% – 29.99% Variable

Credit Req’d

Good, Excellent

Rewards: Three miles per dollar spent are earned on Delta purchases and one mile per dollar spent is earned on everything else.

The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is designed for the avid Delta flyer, offering a bevy of upgrades and perks that any traveler would be envious of.

1x miles
All eligible purchases
Earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases.
3x miles
Delta Purchases
Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Up to 3x miles

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit

American Airlines AAdvantage

The American Airlines AAdvantage Rewards Program is a comprehensive loyalty program designed to benefit travelers. It allows them to earn miles through American Airlines flights, partner airline services, and daily transactions with program affiliates, such as hotel bookings and car rentals.

Members earn miles that can be redeemed for flights to nearly 1,000 destinations worldwide, upgrades, vacation packages, and car rentals, among other rewards. The program features several tiers of membership—Gold, Platinum, Platinum Pro, and Executive Platinum—that provide progressively better benefits. These include priority boarding, free checked bags, and access to preferred seating. Higher tiers offer additional perks such as complimentary upgrades, increased bonus miles on flights, and access to exclusive lounges.

The AAdvantage program is strongest for its extensive network of airline and business partners, making it easy for members to accumulate miles quickly and maximize the benefits of their travel and spending activities.

Citi® / AAdvantage Business™ World Elite Mastercard®

Citi AAdvantage Business World Elite Mastercard

Our Rating: 4.5

★★★★

Citi® / AAdvantage Business™ World Elite Mastercard®

Welcome Offer

Earn 75,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles

Est. Value

Up to $1,125

Annual Fee

$99, waived for first 12 months

APR

21.24% – 29.99% Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent 740 – 850

Rewards: Earn 2x AAdvantage miles on eligible American Airlines purchases, at gas stations, car rental merchants, telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers and 1x miles on other purchases.

The Citi® / AAdvantage Business™ World Elite Mastercard® has an excellent welcome offer and is great for frequent fliers of American Airlines. You also earn elevated rewards on several business categories. There’s also no annual fee for the first year and no foreign transaction fees.

1x miles
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 1 AAdvantage mile for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
2x miles
Select Categories
Earn 2 AAdvantage miles for every $1 spent at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers.
2x miles
American Airline Purchases
Earn 2 AAdvantage miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases.
2x miles
Rental Cars
Earn 2 AAdvantage miles for every $1 spent at car rental merchants.
2x miles
Gas
Earn 2 AAdvantage miles for every $1 spent at gas stations.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit

Hotel Rewards Program Point Value

Hotel Rewards ProgramPotential Value*Member Benefits & Tier Levels
Hilton Honors0.60Honors Details
IHG Hotels One0.55Hotels One Details
Marriott Bonvoy0.80Bonvoy Details
World of Hyatt1.60Hyatt Details
*Value in cents

Hilton Honors

The Hilton Honors Hotel Rewards Program is a comprehensive loyalty venture that benefits frequent travelers who prefer Hilton’s vast properties. Members earn points for each stay at any of Hilton’s hotels, which include brands ranging from luxury options like Waldorf Astoria to more budget-friendly choices like Hampton by Hilton. These points can be redeemed for free nights, room upgrades, and other exclusive experiences such as unique travel adventures and dining experiences.

The program features several tiers—Member, Silver, Gold, and Diamond—each offering incremental benefits that enhance the guest’s experience. Higher tiers provide complimentary breakfast, late checkouts, and bonus earning potential on stays. Hilton Honors members can also take advantage of various travel partners, converting points to airline miles and vice versa.

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card

Hilton Honors American Express Business Card

Our Rating: 4.3

★★★★

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 175,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points (Terms Apply)

Est. Value

Up to $1,050

Annual Fee

$195

APR

20.99% – 29.99% Variable

Credit Req’d

Good, Excellent

Rewards: Earn 12x points at Hilton hotels and resorts, 6x points at U.S. restaurants, gas stations, wireless service providers, shipping, flights booked directly with airlines or with Amex travel, and on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies. Earn 3x points on other eligible purchases.

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card is for business travelers who prefer to stay at Hilton hotels and resorts. You get elevated rewards on several categories and complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status.

3x points
On all other eligible purchases
3X on all other eligible purchases.
6x points
Cell phone service
6X on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers.
6x points
Select Categories
Earn 6X on U.S. purchases for shipping.
6x points
Airfare
6X on flights booked directly with airlines or with Amex Travel.
6x points
Rental Cars
6X on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies.
6x points
Dining
6X at U.S. restaurants.
6x points
Gas
6X at U.S. gas stations.
12x points
Hotels
12X directly with hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Earn 12x at Hilton hotels

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • High APR

IHG Hotels One

The IHG Hotels One Rewards Program is a dynamic loyalty system catering to guests of IHG’s extensive network of hotels, including popular brands like InterContinental, Holiday Inn, and Crowne Plaza. This program allows members to earn points for hotel stays, dining, and other eligible expenses at IHG properties worldwide. Points can be redeemed for hotel stays, upgrades, and various other rewards, including flights and car rentals through partner programs.

The One Rewards Program features multiple membership levels: Club, Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, and Diamond Elite. Each tier offers progressively richer benefits, such as complimentary room upgrades, late checkouts, and bonus points on every stay. Higher tiers provide access to exclusive services like dedicated customer support and guaranteed room availability.

Whenever traveling to visit my parents, the kids and I stay in an IHG hotel because I own two IHG credit cards. I can’t escape the Holiday Inn Express free breakfast (the cinnamon buns are delicious).

IHG One Rewards Premier Business Credit Card

Our Rating: 4.6

★★★★

IHG One Rewards Premier Business Credit Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 140,000 Bonus Points

Est. Value

Up to $770

Annual Fee

$99

APR

21.49% – 28.49% Variable

Credit Req’d

Good, Excellent

Rewards: Earn up to 26x points at IHG Hotels and Resorts, 5x points at gas stations, restaurants, travel and select advertising, and 3x points on other purchases.

The IHG One Rewards Premier Business Credit Card offers high rewards for IHG hotel stays and elevated rewards on many everyday purchases. You can earn a great welcome offer and there are no foreign transaction fees. For a small annual fee, it’s a good travel rewards credit card.

3x points
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 3 points per $1 spent on all other purchases.
5x points
Select Categories
Earn 5 points per $1 spent on select advertising.
5x points
Travel
Earn 5 points per $1 spent on purchases on travel.
5x points
Dining
Earn 5 points per $1 spent on purchases on restaurants.
5x points
Gas
Earn 5 points per $1 spent on purchases on gas stations.
26x points
Hotels
Earn up to 26 total points per $1 spent when you stay at IHG Hotels and Resorts.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit

Marriott Bonvoy

The Marriott Bonvoy Rewards Program is Marriott International’s loyalty program. It is designed to reward frequent travelers at its extensive portfolio of hotels and resorts, including brands like Ritz-Carlton, Sheraton, and Courtyard. Members of the Bonvoy program earn points for room bookings and spending on food, beverages, and other qualifying services at participating properties.

These points can be redeemed for free nights, room upgrades, and experiences such as culinary tours and spa sessions, among other options. The program includes several membership levels—Member, Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Titanium Elite, and Ambassador Elite—offering incremental benefits such as late checkouts, bonus points earning capabilities, and complimentary room upgrades.

Elite status provides additional perks, including lounge access and special welcome gifts. Moreover, Marriott Bonvoy points can be converted into airline miles with numerous global carriers, enhancing its appeal to business and leisure travelers.

Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card

Our Rating: 4.4

★★★★

Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card

Welcome Offer

Earn 5 Free Night Awards, (Terms Apply)

Est. Value

Worth Up To 150K Total Marriott Bonvoy Points

Annual Fee

$125

APR

20.99% – 29.99% Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent, Good

Rewards: Earn 6x points at participating hotels, 4x points at U.S. gas stations, restaurants worldwide, U.S. wireless telephone services, and U.S. shipping, and 2x points on other eligible purchases.

Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card is great for business travelers who prefer to stay at Marriott hotels. You also get elevated rewards for gas and dining and a flat rate 2x points on other purchases. Cardholders also get automatic Silver Elite status which includes priority late checkout and a 10% bonus on hotel stays.

2x points
On all other eligible purchases
Earn 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
4x points
Cell phone service
Earn 4x points on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers.
4x points
Select Categories
Earn 4x points on U.S. purchases for shipping.
4x points
Dining
Earn 4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide.
4x points
Gas
Earn 4x points for purchases made at U.S. gas stations.
6x points
Hotels
Earn 6x Marriott Bonvoy points on each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Up to 6x points

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • Requires good credit

World of Hyatt

The World of Hyatt Rewards Program offers various benefits and rewards across its global network of hotels, including Hyatt Regency, Park Hyatt, and Andaz. Members earn points for stays, dining, and spa services at participating locations, which can then be redeemed for free nights, room upgrades, and other unique experiences like culinary classes and guided local tours.

The program features membership tiers: Member, Discoverist, Explorist, and Globalist, each providing progressively enhanced benefits. For example, higher tiers offer complimentary room upgrades, access to exclusive lounges, guaranteed room availability, and waived resort fees. Additionally, World of Hyatt points can be converted to airline miles with several airline partners.

World of Hyatt Business Credit Card

Our Rating: 4.6

★★★★

World of Hyatt Business Credit Card

Welcome Offer

60,000 Bonus Points

Est. Value

Up to $960

Annual Fee

$199

APR

21.49% – 28.49% Variable

Credit Req’d

Excellent, Good

Rewards: Earn 9x points at Hyatt hotels, 2x points on your top three spend categories each quarter through 12/31/24, then your top two categories each quarter, and 2x points on fitness club and gym memberships.

The World of Hyatt Business Credit Card offers excellent rewards when you use it at Hyatt hotels. Plus, the flexibility of earning elevated rewards on your top spending categories each quarter. Eligible categories include dining, shipping, gas stations, and more.

1x points
On all other eligible purchases
1 Bonus Point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
2x points
Select Categories
2 Bonus Points per $1 spent in your top three spend categories each quarter through 12/31/24, then your top two categories each quarter.
2x points
Select Categories
2 Bonus Points per $1 spent on fitness club and gym memberships.
9x points
Hotels
9 points total per $1 spent at Hyatt - 4 Bonus Points per $1 when you use your card at Hyatt hotels & 5 Base Points per $1 from Hyatt as a World of Hyatt member.

Pros

  • Welcome offer
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Up to 9x points

Cons

  • Annual fee
  • High APR
  • Requires good credit

Final Thought on the Value of Credit Card Reward Points and Loyalty Programs

Credit card, airline, and hotel rewards programs present a smart way to leverage spending into tangible benefits. These programs are designed to reward consumer loyalty and enhance the overall value of the money spent by offering perks that can significantly improve everyday and travel experiences.

By carefully selecting and utilizing these programs, savvy consumers can transform routine expenditures into rewards, including free travel, luxury upgrades, and exclusive services. As such, engaging actively with these reward schemes is a strategic choice that can yield continuous returns, making every dollar spent work harder for you.