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Best Travel Credit Card without annual Fee

Discussion in 'questions. answers. conversations.' started by Penguin1996, Aug 21, 2019.

  1. Penguin1996

    Penguin1996 New Member

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    I know paying a fee is necessary towards gaining the best potential. But I'm wary of paying one with a fee.
    Wirecutter has recommended PenFed Pathfinder. I'm willing to go through the Bureaucracy. However, Nerdwallet also recommends Wells Fargo Propel. None of the big websites I trust have covered Pathfinder.
    I'm very confused.
    What does this forum think?

    Lap
     
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  2. MidSouth Skier

    MidSouth Skier Well-Known Member

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    What are your travel goals? For many people a no-fee cash back card is the best way to go. But there are a few no-fee cards that offer travel rewards too. It all depends on how you plan to travel.
     
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  3. OCTinPHL

    OCTinPHL Active Member

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    Both cards you mention are issued by Amex through the respective banks. PenFed requires you be a member, whereas Wells Fargo does not. Both seem to have decent benefits and good sign-up bonuses, but both reward you with points you have to use on their respective awards sites. I don't know if you can transfer the points to an airline or not. So as @MidSouthSkier said, you may want to look at a cash-back card. Or if you have a particular airline you fly, get a no annual fee card for that airline (if one is offered).
     
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    Last edited: Aug 21, 2019
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  4. Tiffany

    Tiffany One Mile At A Time

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    Yep, keep in mind that most other sites don't look at how you could use rewards in an aspirational way. So they'll always rate a "cash back" card that has a good return higher than a card that would allow for more lucrative redemptions.

    The Pathfinder card is fine if you just want cash-back, but there are more flexible cards (the most rewarding cards do have a fee, but there are still a few): https://onemileatatime.com/best-travel-credit-cards/no-annual-fee/
     
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  5. Penguin1996

    Penguin1996 New Member

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    I take 2-4 international trips a year. NYC to London, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore. I want to start gaining Points for myself on top of what the company pays for me. I'm totally new to cards. I'm a high spender (5-10k per month). Should I apply for the CSR or is the CSP okay for me?
     
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  6. Penguin1996

    Penguin1996 New Member

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    Which travel credit card do you recommend on the list? For transferable miles.
     
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  7. MidSouth Skier

    MidSouth Skier Well-Known Member

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    What airlines do you typically fly? That will help us figure out which cards have points you can use. Are you trying to get status or upgrades to business class or what? For your business trips, are you allowed to pay for the airfare on your own cards or (like my company) must the charge be to a company card/cost center?
     
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  8. Ben Holz

    Ben Holz Member

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    In my opinion, with that amount of spending I think it could make sense to get a card with fees.

    You could consider getting at least the Chase Sapphire Preferred ($95 annual fee, 60k welcome bonus after spending $4k in 3 months) and getting either the Chase Freedom (no annual fees, 5x points in rotating categories) and/or Chase Freedom Unlimited (1.5 URs/$ in all purchases) in conjunction to the CSP.

    Take a look at the CSR benefits and decide if you are willing to pay $450 for the additional benefits (e.g. TSA Pre-Check, Priority Pass, etc). I would recommend you to take a look at the Chase Ultimate Rewards cards guide (https://onemileatatime.com/chase-ultimate-rewards-guide/#chase_sapphire_preferred_card) and see based on your spending pattern what would be the most beneficial to you.
     
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  9. Gia

    Gia Well-Known Member

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    If your spend is $5 to $10 thousand a month, on your own cards, you have a lot of options not just limited to no fee cards, but even the cards with hefty fees will be justified because the rewards you get back on high spending will be substantial and offset the card cost.
     
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