We’re diving into some of the best travel credit cards with rewards for travel so you can use points and save your dollars and ultimately (like we always say) travel more often!
In this episode we break down the best credit cards for travel looking at the travel perks each card offers including points for free flights, airport lounge access, travel and car insurance, money towards travel and so much more. We compare the best credit cards for travel rewards across several different of the main travel cards and airline-specific cards to help you fuck them hard and travel for less.
Best Travel Credit Cards – Episode Transcript
Welcome to this week’s episode of the Travel Squad podcast. Today, we’re going to talk to you guys all about our favorite travel credit cards. We’re bringing you this episode by popular demand, due to listener questions. We’ve had so many people ask us what’s our favorite travel credit card. So this episode is all about that.
2 (1m 13s):
I know people sometimes give credit cards, a bad rep for many different reasons, but I do believe that credit cards are good. One. They help you build credit. And two, they help you fulfill a goal, which in this case is travel. And we’re going to be talking all about how it can be utilized, how it can help you. And if you’re paying down the balance each month, then it’s almost like just using a debit card.
3 (1m 36s):
In this episode, we are showing you the money.
4 (1m 41s):
3 (1m 42s):
And I’m getting shown the money as well. In this episode, we’re really bringing home our fuck them hard motto,
4 (1m 49s):
Bucking them hard,
1 (1m 51s):
3 (1m 51s):
Because all of these travel cards have bonuses and Perks. And we have examples of how we’ve used them to get travel for free or discounted all on their dime and not ours, which is how I like to travel back.
1 (2m 5s):
And there’s just so many travel credit cards out there and researching them can be really overwhelming. And so in this episode, we’ve researched four of the most popular travel credit cards, and we broke it down for all of you guys. So it’s really easy to understand, so you can pick the card that is best for you.
2 (2m 22s):
So without further ado, let’s get into the credit cards. Woo,
4 (2m 26s):
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3 (2m 27s):
4 (2m 31s):
Get those points.
3 (2m 32s):
By the way, if anybody needs points, feel free to buy me things.
4 (2m 38s):
I’m starting her own a wishlist over here.
2 (2m 40s):
Well, I mean, Jamal and Brittany, before we started to record, they were talking about how they needed to make a few purchases in order to hit a bonus. And as they’re talking about that, I’m just like, I can give you a few things to purchase. If you’d like,
4 (2m 52s):
You guys can create your wishlist and add it to your only fans or something, you guys thing.
1 (2m 58s):
So the first credit that we’re going to talk about is the Delta sky miles reserve American express card.
4 (3m 4s):
That’s a mouthful.
1 (3m 5s):
Yes, it is. So the person that would benefit most from the card are people that fly Delta quite often because it is a Delta card. Unfortunately though, the annual fee is pretty steep. It’s $550 per year.
4 (3m 19s):
That’s a steep one. But if you use the points and utilize it, right, like we’re going to talk about the fee pays for itself.
1 (3m 28s):
Yes, it can. So there is a welcome offer. After spending $3,000 in three months, you can earn 40,000 miles. And after that you earned three miles per dollar spent on Delta and earn one mile per dollar, anywhere else that you shop.
4 (3m 45s):
I just want to say this. And I only bring this up because this is before my traveling days when I was a little kid and I would always see travel credit card commercials. And they’re like, oh, you get 4,000 miles. Well, miles is just really their point system that they use. You don’t really have 40,000 bonus miles for 40,000 miles of flight time. You know, I always used to think, oh, I mean, they really track like, oh, Sacramento to San Diego is 500 miles. I know, but that’s just their point system.
2 (4m 12s):
That’s so funny. Cause when you said that I was thinking 40,000 miles and I was trying to calculate in my head. Hmm. How far does 40,000 miles from San Diego take you?
4 (4m 19s):
No. I mean, it’s just like with any frequent flyer airline program that they do have their miles, like as an example, Southwest, you know, they don’t call them miles. They call them points, you know, but points or miles and vice versa. So they’re really just their own actuarial dollar value
2 (4m 36s):
Potato Patato. Yes.
1 (4m 37s):
So in the Delta sky, west reserve American express card and the welcome offer, they also give you 10,000 medallion qualification points. And prior to doing the research, I had no idea what medallion qualification status is. And I learned that it’s a four tiered system going from silver, then gold to platinum. And the highest status is diamond. And this status is based on how many flights that you take, how much you spend with Delta and their partner airlines. And it gives you a lot of perks, like unlimited, complimentary upgrades. You can earn more miles, but you get priority boarding and your baggage fees are waived.
1 (5m 18s):
There’s also the possibility to have a status boost. And so every time you spend a $30,000, which is a lot, you can get 15 of the medallion qualification miles, four times per year,
3 (5m 31s):
Deltas diamond medallion tier is where I strive to be.
2 (5m 36s):
I already see you there.
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What comes with the medallion and diamond? Can
3 (5m 39s):
You get a clear membership? You get all those boarding perks, you get those upgrade perks like me in first-class laying back drinking champagne is the lifestyle I strive to live. And it’s cool about this card because you can earn it and not actually have to buy your way in, which is also one of the other options with diamond, I think is like a few hundred dollars.
2 (5m 60s):
Have you ever done clear before?
3 (6m 1s):
2 (6m 2s):
Okay. It’s really interesting because they, they got me at the airport for a free trials. Cause I didn’t have TSA pre so basically they entered a whole bunch of information about me and they scanned my eyes. So in order to go through clear, you just stand in front of something and it scans your eyes so crazy.
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You’re in the system now
2 (6m 20s):
I am, I am. Even when I canceled it, I was like, oh, I’m in the
4 (6m 23s):
System. Got your fingerprint. Now they’ve got your Iris. I
2 (6m 26s):
Don’t, you know what? I’ve got a cataract in the left eye. So my eye might change over time. Did
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They, by any chance, take a prick of blood.
2 (6m 34s):
They did not. That’s the one thing that I drew the line. I said, no blood, you can take my eyes. You can take my social. You can take my prints, but no blood.
4 (6m 42s):
Yeah. So you can use the points that you earn from your purchases to actually redeem for free Delta flights. So again, if you’re utilizing and fly Delta a lot, which we’ve talked about this before, other than Southwest, in terms of the major American airlines, Delta United American, I think all of us here in the squatter and consensus that Delta is the best of them. So it doesn’t surprise me to see that people love Delta and fly them, but you can utilize those points for redemption towards free flights. And then obviously with those purchases also earn yourself, you know, medallion, qualification miles to get those extra bonuses on top of that. But doesn’t this one come with lounge access Brittany.
1 (7m 24s):
Yes, it does. It gives you Delta sky club access and that’s complimentary. And then if you’re traveling with another person, you get to one time guest passes per year, it also gives you access to the American express Centurion lounge as well. And that’s complimentary. And like I had mentioned earlier, your first checked bag is free, which can save you a lot of money as you travel over the year.
2 (7m 50s):
So if you only get two one-time guest passes annually, I would say, just show up each time you fly and just, oh, I’m so sorry. I didn’t know. Maybe they’ll leave it.
1 (7m 59s):
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Maybe you’ll get lucky
1 (8m 1s):
And there’s even more perks and wait, there’s more
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Back it up.
1 (8m 8s):
So you do get a companion certificate every year upon renewal. Meaning that someone that you fly with gets a free flight one time per year, Ooh, there’s no foreign transaction fees on this credit card, you save 20% off of in-flight purchases. You get upgraded priority. And the priority boarding is for you. And up to eight companions that you’re traveling with
3 (8m 34s):
OU can bring the whole crew,
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The whole crew. And,
2 (8m 38s):
1 (8m 39s):
I know you get a global entry free credit every four years to get global entry
4 (8m 46s):
And global entry. We’ve talked about it before. If you don’t know, global injury gets you TSA pre so again, you have a special line. When you go through TSA, you don’t have to take off your shoes. Don’t have to take out your liquids. And on top of that, if you travel internationally a lot, when you come back through customs, you also have a dedicated line and you have to apply for that. They do a background check on you. No doubt it costs a hundred dollars. But if you have this card, if you purchase your global entry with the department of Homeland security on this card, they will reimburse you that as a credit, when it comes time for renewal,
2 (9m 20s):
This is like a double fisting of the airport. Because on one hand you got the clear and the other one, you got your global entry,
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Fucking them hard,
2 (9m 27s):
Fucking him hard. Which one do you use?
3 (9m 29s):
I always love global entry. I love it for customs because the line for global entry, our kiosks that you pretty much always can just walk through the line for customs is like an hour or two hour winding line of wait
4 (9m 42s):
Time, depending on the airport that you come into. But
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You know what COVID has kind of screwed us with this one because global entry and TSA pre used to be one of the best benefits of going through the airport. But now so many airports don’t even have their TSA pre-lines open or true, or they just hand you the laminated card,
1 (10m 0s):
Like the plaque.
3 (10m 1s):
You still have to take your laptop out. And every single time they tell me, don’t worry about your shoes. Don’t worry about your coat, but then the alarm goes off and I ended up having to go back, take this off, go back, take that off.
4 (10m 12s):
I agree with you on that sentiment. I felt like that was the case at the beginning of COVID, as we’ve been traveling more throughout COVID life, if you will. I feel like airports as the demand for travel, even though it’s still low, has steadily increased, they are reopening up those lines. I just really think it depends on the airport that you’re going to and how big or small it is. If you have those.
3 (10m 33s):
I mean, throughout 2020, I flew through Austin, Boston, Minneapolis, Las Vegas, and all of them were disappointing me.
1 (10m 43s):
And also in 2020 there wasn’t really a lot of international travel. And so global entry didn’t really have that big draw or benefit because who was really traveling internationally.
2 (10m 53s):
You know, as we were talking about all of this, I was thinking to myself, cause you guys were on me to get my global entry. And I’m like, well, I’m glad I didn’t end up getting it because then I would have wasted an entire year.
4 (11m 2s):
Well, you have four more years to use. And that’s the good thing. Global entry is good for five years before you need to renew it. So with this card, you can get the credit for your first time enrolling in the program. You get the credit when you renew every five years. So you’re not going to get the benefit this year necessarily, but you’re going to get it in the following year. That’s for sure.
1 (11m 21s):
So the Delta SkyMiles reserve American express card also offer some travel protection. It gives you baggage insurance, secondary car rental loss and damage insurance trip, cancellation and interruption, insurance and trip, delay insurance.
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Who’s had stories about lost baggage. Has anyone ever actually lost their baggage and needed to file a claim and get money back?
4 (11m 43s):
Never lost one and had to file a claim.
1 (11m 45s):
So when I was on a Southwest flight, they did lose my baggage and
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Lose it. It just didn’t come in. They were able tell that it didn’t make that plan and it was coming on the next one, it
2 (11m 56s):
1 (11m 57s):
It was late. And because it was late, they did compensate me $200
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In flight credit, not cash
1 (12m 4s):
Right in flight credit. Yes,
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Because it was a a hundred dollars cash, right? Or 200 flight credit. Wasn’t it? Something like
1 (12m 11s):
That. I would take the 200, I fly all the time
4 (12m 14s):
And that could change. You know, that Southwest policy we’re on Delta right now, but none of us here have ever had to utilize these travel protections that these credit cards do offer, but they are useful. And when we get to the next credit card that we’re going to talk about that I actually have myself. It also does have the car rental insurance protection. So I always waive it when I rent a car and they ask for it. Do you want it? I tell them no, because I have it. So I fortunately haven’t had to utilize the claim. Hope I never have to, but this has it.
2 (12m 44s):
Okay. So I have a question about the travel protection. Does it protect against pandemics
3 (12m 49s):
Cancellations for pandemics?
1 (12m 51s):
Probably not. Most credit cards have an inclusion where they don’t cover pandemics.
2 (12m 57s):
Isn’t that so crazy because how often are you going to use any one of the other travel protections and then versus when a pandemic comes across because I am mid thirties and I’ve only seen one pandemic in my lifetime and you think you’d want to cover a pandemic since it’s so rare over anything else?
4 (13m 15s):
Well, I tried to utilize it on again, the credit card we’re going to talk about next. We’ll get to it shortly. But just to answer your question here, I utilized my points on that one to book a hotel in Hong Kong that I was supposed to go to March of 2020, right at the onset of COVID. And I try to use the trip cancellation protection. And they told me that pandemics were excluded. And I said, well, well then what’s included. And they said, oh, stuff like, you know, flight, crew strikes and things like that. I’m just like strikes happen more often than pandemics. And you have like pandemics excluded. Like I feel like airlines. They, the major ones they strike like every five years.
2 (13m 52s):
Well, I mean, I guess they knew how much they would lose in a pandemic because look at it.
1 (13m 57s):
So some pros to this card are sky miles never expire. And you can book almost any flight with a combination of SkyMiles and cash, which not all airlines let you do both at the same time.
4 (14m 9s):
That’s actually really clutch. You know, it’s very hard to find airlines that do that. You are right, and I don’t have this card, but I am a Delta sky miles member. So the points that you earned with this card, those are your Delta sky miles points. And just in general about Delta and their sky miles program. That’s one of the things I love that it likes Southwest in that sense, your points or miles in this case never expire, which is a rarity in the airline industry. Other big airlines, they do expire. It’s use it or lose it. And I hate that.
1 (14m 39s):
And some cons for the card are, if you’re traveling with other people, they might not get free lounge access. Like I said, there’s only two complimentary lounge accesses per year that you get, it also might not be the best card for you if you don’t fly Delta often, because it is a steep annual fee of $550. And last con is American express isn’t as commonly accepted as visa and MasterCard,
2 (15m 1s):
Which is crazy because American express is a lot more elite to get.
1 (15m 5s):
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Costco does not accept American express.
4 (15m 8s):
Costco used to be American express and then they switched to visa.
1 (15m 12s):
You know, they used to only accept American express and not visa and MasterCard for a long time. So
3 (15m 16s):
Weird. They’re just playing the field like that.
4 (15m 18s):
Well, I mean, it’s Costco just like any other business. They find who they could get the best deal with. They decided American express wasn’t it anymore and went with visa, but that’s neither here nor there we are talking about travel credit cards. So getting into the second travel credit card, my personal favorite on this list because I actually have it and I do utilize it is going to be the chase Sapphire reserve credit card.
2 (15m 44s):
And I got to say, we are not an affiliate of chase Sapphire, although we would absolutely love to, but Jamal reps, this card, so fucking hard, any chance he gets Zayna Kim, you guys got to get the chase Sapphire, why haven’t you gotten the chase Sapphire?
4 (15m 59s):
I just feel so elite with this card, you know, for the millionaires and billionaires, they have like the American express black card that you have to get invited to be a member of the club to have that. And this card here, one it’s not American express, it’s a visa. However, I feel like this is an elite status that the general public can actually get to. So it makes me feel special. But beyond that and my ego, it really does have a lot of solid, solid products that, you know, I really think makes us the best travel credit card, at least how me and Brittany travel. Because when I decided that I wanted to get a really good travel credit card, I did do the research few years back before I picked this one up.
4 (16m 40s):
And, you know, I came to the conclusion that this one was it,
2 (16m 43s):
Take us through the spread.
1 (16m 44s):
But first before Jamal gets into it, the card actually feels heavier than most credit cards,
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3 (16m 52s):
Do you have an approximate weight on that?
4 (16m 53s):
I don’t have an approximate weight on it, but it is definitely heavier than a regular credit card because it is metal. And as a matter of fact, when I had a fraud warning and they sent me a new credit card with the new credit card, they sent me an Envoy elope to return my old one, because they said that this can not be treaded regularly because it is a certain type of metal.
2 (17m 14s):
Let’s bring out my scale on the bathroom and let’s away right here right now.
4 (17m 18s):
Maybe we’ll put that in the show notes here and how
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Our scale for that one. I
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Know the battery’s dead.
4 (17m 25s):
So getting right into it with the chase Sapphire reserve, the people who would benefit most from this are going to be frequent travelers. And what I really like about it is it does not restrict you to a particular airline. And so the points that you earn are good for different airlines. It’s good for hotels. It’s good for rental cars, so you can use them anywhere. And it doesn’t really keep you captive in that sense. So for the everyday traveler and frequent one, I find it to be really, really good. This also does have a very, very steep fee, same as the previous American express card with Delta that we talked about $550.
4 (18m 6s):
It used to be four 50. I got in at the four 50 rate. It is now five 50 and
3 (18m 11s):
4 (18m 11s):
In. I was grandfathered in the first year that they changed it to five 50, but now I am at five 50.
2 (18m 18s):
I just want to say that’s a perk then your grandfather.
4 (18m 20s):
Oh no, no, no. I, I wish I was, but they had raised the rate for everybody new coming in, but at the next cycle of when they charged me the annual fee, they didn’t charge me the increased fee, but on the next one here, I didn’t get it. So, I mean, they gave me that little perk and that sense, but even though this fee is steep, it very well pays for itself. And we’re going to go over that here very shortly on how it pays for itself. But currently as it stands, now, they do have a welcome offer with this card. It’s going to be 50,000 points after spending 4,000 in the first three months. And that 50,000 points is equivalent to $750 in travel credit.
4 (19m 3s):
So that’s $750 on an airline ticket. If you want on a hotel on a rental car, whatever it is that you want to do
1 (19m 11s):
That in itself just pays for the annual membership. Yeah.
8 (19m 14s):
First year, just the first
4 (19m 16s):
Phase for the first year, all in itself. If you do meet that bonus, but I’m going to tell you here again, a little bit later, how the $550 fee pays for itself with this card, but you accumulate points with this card by obviously spending and putting your charges on it. So each dollar that you spend is equivalent to one point. However, you get three times the points on travel and dining. So if I buy a hundred dollar airplane ticket, I have 300 points in travel. If I spend a hundred dollars on a meal out with Brittany, I have 300 points in travel. So dining and travel gets you three times the points, all other points are equivalent to $1.
4 (19m 58s):
1 (19m 59s):
You forgot to say that this card would benefit foodies as well.
4 (20m 3s):
It definitely would. If you like to dine out a lot, it definitely benefits the foodie.
2 (20m 8s):
So it’s like only in the restaurant. It’s not like Uber eats or something like
4 (20m 11s):
That. I go to McDonald’s that counts.
3 (20m 13s):
What about the Costco food court?
4 (20m 16s):
No, that’s at one point it counts as Costco, but question, but you know, Costco food court. So inexpensive, you know, I spend a dollar 50 on a hot dog. What am I going to get? 4.5 points? You know, it’s not, I guess, I guess not that big of a deal, but you can accumulate points up that way using this card to make your travel purchases and obviously dining out. And some of the Perks of this card include a $300 annual travel credit, free
1 (20m 46s):
4 (20m 47s):
Free money. So fucking them hard. So that’s what I love about this. The fee is 550 each year, you get a $300 annual travel credit. Now the travel credit applies to any purchase that you make in the travel related field. So you buy a train ticket, a plane ticket, a hotel, a rental car. Your first $300 in the cycle year will go towards that $300 credit. I remember one time, Brittany, we were parking downtown here in San Diego. When I first got this card and our meters here take credit cards now. So I was like, oh fuck it. I’m going to get some points. And then I use it to pay for the parking meter and I see a dollar credit. And then I realized, oh, my parking meter counts as a travel credit.
4 (21m 30s):
So I got free parking, like I’m on the monopoly board or something. So that truly brings down the feet to $250. And I do want to say now in the time of COVID they realized that not a lot of people are traveling. So they’ve applied that $300 credit to be to groceries now, even just as well. So yeah, so they’re adding different categories to apply this credit cause they know people aren’t traveling, which I really, really like about it. So again brings the five 50 feet down to two 50. They’re
1 (22m 2s):
Flexible. And they listen to the people.
4 (22m 4s):
Yes. On top of that, it does give you a a hundred dollars statement credit again every four years. And it’s applied when you use your card to purchase your TSA pre-check or global entry. So same perk as the previous credit card we discussed my favorite perk. I must say about this credit card and we’ve all utilized. This perkier is the lounge access that is provided to you with this credit card
1 (22m 30s):
4 (22m 31s):
Lounge never experienced lounge life in an airport. You are missing out. We travel coach. I’m not going to lie. You know, we’re not first-class people, but this makes me feel like fucking first-class when I have this lounge access. That is for damn sure. Yeah. Yet. Well, I like to save the money I would spend on business and go extravagant on the vacation.
1 (22m 50s):
It’s to describe a lounge to someone who’s never been in an airport. Lounge, Shree
3 (22m 54s):
1 (22m 55s):
Free drink. Okay.
4 (22m 56s):
I was going to say, I’m surprised you said food first booze, number one, free booze. I mean, who doesn’t go to the airport bar in the airport. I think we all do. How would you like to go to an airport bar? That’s free. No
1 (23m 7s):
Mosa. Margarita is a glass of wine, a beer cocktails, all free water bottles, water bottles, stock up soda cans. I mean, they have it all. Then they have food. Some lounges have like soups or salads or little mini snacks to grab their finger foods. Some with COVID. They now have like, pre-packaged bulls that they’ll set out for you and then they’ll deliver it to you.
3 (23m 34s):
Some places have menus. You can order
1 (23m 36s):
Off of some places have menus. Absolutely. And it really depends on how big the lounges and where the lounges.
4 (23m 43s):
It was something that Zaina said. And I think we kind of all glossed over because we were excited about the drinks. At least I was did no one catch the NSA showers, showers. I mean, who doesn’t want to get off of an eight to 12 hour flight? You have a layover. Maybe you’re not even the final location. You have another flight who doesn’t want to shower. Not all the lounges have showers, but some of the new, especially in the larger, big international airport,
2 (24m 5s):
Nothing like freshening up and changing into the second pair of underwear that you put in your travel bag.
3 (24m 10s):
Absolutely. Rotten enough to shoot yourself three to five times a day.
4 (24m 14s):
All of us bringing enough to shit ourselves three to five times a day, except for Zana. Cause apparently Zana doesn’t wear any underwear
2 (24m 22s):
Or deny that
1 (24m 23s):
Dana did not put it on the show notes.
4 (24m 25s):
So the lounge access that you get is provided through a third party called priority pass. So it’s an independent company. If you didn’t have this credit card, you can actually pay to be a member of this, but it is included free with this credit card. That again, the chase Sapphire reserve, it’s one of my favorite things. One thing I do want to mention is we’ve been to some airports that don’t have lounges. And again, the reality is some airports don’t. But it, for example, when we were in San Francisco, Brittany and I, we were traveling on through, they didn’t have an actual lounge with priority paths that you could go into. However, some of the restaurants there, they gave you like a $28 food and drink credit to have.
4 (25m 10s):
And so we had food
3 (25m 12s):
And we’ll get you one airport beer,
4 (25m 15s):
It’ll get you one airport beer, it’ll get you a meal. And the good news is with the priority pass. You do have it complimentary for a guest. And Brittany also had a $28 credit. So when I go, she gets into the lounge with me. If they don’t have the lounges and we get the food credit instead of getting 28, cause she’s traveling with me now we have 56 bucks. So real, real solid. I’ll tell you what, my extra $250 in my annual fee I’ve gotten in free food and drinks would just with the lounge. And it’s so nice to not have to sit with the general public and the lounge. I don’t mean that in a mean way, but I don’t mean it in that sense, Kim, I wouldn’t go far as to call them peasants because I’ve been there before.
4 (25m 57s):
However, you know, it’s just nice that seclusion, you don’t really have to think like, oh, the airport’s crowded. I don’t want to sit around people. I’m not even talking in times of COVID like who just really wants to sit and an airport terminal. Now you have your own little private space.
3 (26m 11s):
The seats are usually nice or they’re too big, comfy chairs and couches.
1 (26m 16s):
3 (26m 16s):
Fancy little waiters walking around
1 (26m 19s):
And look tables and then charging stations at each
3 (26m 22s):
1 (26m 24s):
Yes, there’s a lot of perks in the
3 (26m 26s):
Lounges. Cool jazz playing
2 (26m 29s):
Piano player, free
4 (26m 30s):
1 (26m 32s):
But Jamal was talking about some of the food credits that you get. We recently went to a restaurant that had the best spring rolls I’ve had ever in an airport setting. And then we also got noodles.
4 (26m 44s):
Oh yeah. We were passing through the Seattle airport and they didn’t have a lounge that we were able to utilize. Cause we were passing through so fast, but right by our gate was one of the restaurants that had the credit associated with the priority pass lounges and oh yeah. Were those spring rolls that we had or egg rolls. So, so good. Some of the best ones I’ve ever had before an airport
1 (27m 6s):
And like you get $28 free. So you can get a appetizer and entree and maybe even a drink. And as long as it’s under $28, it’s free. And if it’s not under $28, you’re just paying the difference.
4 (27m 19s):
So moving on from the lounges and I know it’s hard to move off of it. Cause honestly, this is really one of my favorite perks about it. Let’s talk a little bit about the point redemption for it. We talked about how you accumulate the points. Now let’s talk about how to redeem them. If any of you guys have any chase credit card, you might be familiar with their ultimate rewards program. So regular points that you earn, you can redeem through ultimate rewards and their traveled tool through ultimate rewards is pretty much like Expedia. So you book it through chase ultimate rewards, but it’s pretty much the Expedia platform. So again, whatever flights you want to book through their hotels, rental cars, that’s where you would go and utilize your points.
1 (28m 1s):
And this is really where we have fucked them hard since receiving this card. Jamal and I have not paid for a hotel room for our solo trips at all. It’s paid for two nights in Atlantis and Dubai hotels and a big island, Hawaii Yosemite Sedona, a whole bunch of other places as well. We have yet to pay for a hotel room since getting this card on a solo trip with just Jamal and I
4 (28m 28s):
Absolutely. And so you can redeem your points for anything other than travel. I mean, you could even get them for gift cards. And if you utilize the gift cards, you know, the points are on like a one-to-one cycle, like a hundred points is equivalent to a dollar. So that’s what I mean, like one to one. However, if you book it for travel, you get one and a half times the purchasing power of it. So that’s one thing to take into consideration. If we were talking to that 50,000 points, if you were to utilize it again, just to redeem a gift card, for example, it would give you $500, but you get the 50% credit bonus. So that’s how that 50,000 comes to seven 50. So if you book it for travel related stuff, you get more purchasing power with your
1 (29m 10s):
Points, but wait, there’s more,
4 (29m 13s):
There’s more, if you don’t want to utilize it for points, you get a one-to-one point transfer to your preferred airline. So again, let’s just say with that bonus, we’re talking about about 50,000 points. If I don’t want to book it for travel through their platform that they have. And let’s just say I have a British airways travel program that I have with the airline or Delta sky miles or Southwest. I can take those points and easily convert it to my airlines point system.
3 (29m 42s):
How do you go about doing that?
4 (29m 43s):
So you would just log in to your account that you have with chase, and then it’ll tell you how many points you want to transfer, and then you just transfer it to your participating airline of your choice and it just links it for you. So if you went to your Delta sky miles account and said, I want to transfer 50,000 points from here and then, you know, you would get your 50,000 points in Delta sky miles points.
3 (30m 7s):
Hmm. And is it instant or is there a delay? I
4 (30m 10s):
Haven’t used it yet, so I’m not too sure. I like to use it through the redemption system and just utilize points with the airlines. Like when I book with the airlines and get them that way and redeem the credits. So I haven’t done the transfer to know how fast it goes through.
3 (30m 25s):
4 (30m 26s):
So there’s lots of ways to use it again. This credit card also does not have any foreign transaction fees. So if you have international travel, it’s definitely going to be clutch in that respect. Otherwise, anytime you charge internationally, you know, they have a three to 4% fee, which is no good right now they’re having specials with Lyft. So you actually get 10 times the points when you use your credit card with Lyft. And on top of that, you know, they’re giving out all these awesome Perks. It’s giving you Lyft pink, which is Lyft’s new paid membership program. And if you have Lyft pink, it automatically gives you 15% off all your rides. It gives you priority pickup at the airports.
4 (31m 6s):
If there is like high demand. So it puts you to the front of the line of the request list and it has more relaxed cancellation policies. So again, this is a separate Lyft membership that comes complimentary with your credit card, just as well to give you even more bonuses. So I always use Lyft over Uber and I’m always getting 15% off my rides because my Lyft account is tied to my chase credit card.
1 (31m 32s):
And one of the most recent perks that they’ve added is door dash. They give you a $60 per year door, dash credit, and then they also give you unlimited $0 delivery fees on door dash purchases,
3 (31m 47s):
Every door, dash delivery, or just select restaurants.
4 (31m 51s):
No. So you always have $0 delivery with door dash. So they know I have no delivery fees, but each year they’re giving you $60 in door dash credits in terms of like what you purchase food wise. So again, you can really see how with all these perks and those credits that you are going to not really be paying the 550 fee. It pays for itself five fold pretty much. And you know, I, I want to move on to other credit cards. So I’m just going to brush over the rest of the remaining perks. I love it so much. I have it. So I could talk all day about it, but you know, this does have travel protection just as well, lost luggage, reimbursement trip, delay, reimbursement, rental car collision waiver. You know, if you were to get an accident and your written old car, if you were to buy big ticket items like TVs, laptops, it has extended warranties on those electronic items.
4 (32m 39s):
And again, there’s so, so many more, that’s really, really hard to go over all of them. Otherwise we spend all day on here. So
2 (32m 46s):
I mean, this could be an entire episode just dedicated to the chase. Sapphire.
4 (32m 49s):
I think this is easier too, because again, I have it. So that’s why I’m trying to move along here. So yeah, again, some of the pros about this card, why I really love it is the flexibility on how you redeem points with no blackout dates. You’re not confined to a specific airline specific rental car company, and you could choose to redeem your points and all sorts of different ways. The con I would say again is the upfront fee that you have the $550 annual fee. But again, with the statement credit and all the extra perks, I feel like it makes up. So it’s really hard if you’re utilizing this car the right way to find a con with it,
3 (33m 22s):
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1 (33m 52s):
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3 (34m 27s):
All right, moving on to our third credit card. This is one that I am a user of, and it is the Southwest rapid rewards priority card. There’s actually three levels to this card priority is the third level. There are two other levels that you could apply for, but as you move up in the three tiers, there are additional perks that come with the tiers.
4 (34m 49s):
So priority. When you say third is the top one,
3 (34m 51s):
The top tier, the most Perks,
1 (34m 53s):
And then also the most expensive then as
3 (34m 55s):
Well in terms of the annual fit. Yes, I’m going to get to that. So who would benefit most from this card? Just like our Delta card we talked about in the first one, frequent Southwest fliers are also big beneficiaries of this travel card because it gives their Southwest flyers, the most Perks.
4 (35m 11s):
That’s us. You know, we love Southwest. I mean, who doesn’t like, honestly, if you don’t like Southwest, I don’t want to say don’t listen to us anymore, but like on you reconsider yourself here
3 (35m 22s):
And Southwest of your listing sponsor us. So annual fee on this particular one is $149. If you are applying for it and you are just getting it, they have a welcome offer of 40,000 points. And that is given to you after you spent a thousand dollars within those first 90 days.
1 (35m 39s):
And that’s not a lot of money in comparison to what you had to spend for the welcome offers for the other two cards we talked about.
3 (35m 45s):
Yeah, exactly. And the 40,000 points comes out to about $700 in travel. And for Southwest that can get you several trips.
1 (35m 54s):
2 (35m 55s):
I mean, I pay $39 to fly home
4 (35m 57s):
And that’s what I was going to say. If you’re booking, they’re very rare 30 nines, but a lot of times you’ll find 49 to $79 very regularly. I mean, if you’re booking a couple round trips of that, I mean, you’re talking easily like four flights, brown trip.
3 (36m 10s):
Yeah. Or a cross country trip or two, depending on when you book. So yeah. It’s a really great welcome offer. As far as points, how they accumulate after that, they of course value their Southwest purchases more than general purchases. So every, every time you buy anything in terms of a Southwest flight, Southwest Wi-Fi Southwest drinks on the flight, you get two times the points for every dollar spent and then one point for everything else, there are no lounges Southwest. Well, Southwest is a very down to earth airline. They don’t have first class. They don’t have lounges. They don’t have a lot of that. Bougie Sapphire.
4 (36m 49s):
Yeah. I don’t want to call Southwest of budget airline because they have such great customer service that it’s not budget. They are. I mean, they’re just amazing. So I would wager to say they are a practical airline, no frills, but they don’t skimp out.
3 (37m 3s):
Exactly. Yeah. Your bags fly
2 (37m 5s):
Free transparency. Yes.
1 (37m 7s):
2 (37m 8s):
I think that’s their wording.
3 (37m 10s):
Some of the other perks that they give you every year, you get 7,500 rapid rewards points. It’s their point system. Just like every card has her own unique name for theirs. You also get a $75 Southwest travel voucher every year. So that’s half of your annual fee right
2 (37m 27s):
There. It’s another trip home.
3 (37m 29s):
There you go. You get 20% cash back on your statement. When you purchase Southwest drinks in the flight, or if you purchase wifi on the plane, you also get upgraded boarding. So while they don’t have first class, they do board with their priority, their a list preferred. They even have this alias preferred line, like the TSA pre line. They have a special line for these people to board in that you can also achieve. And there’s no foreign transaction fees on this card, which is amazing.
4 (37m 60s):
That’s really solid because Southwest doesn’t even really fly a lot of international except to Mexico. And so I would figure that would be something that they would want to really offer as a perk because they’d probably don’t think, oh, a lot of people find Southwest international. So that’s a real solid perk to have.
3 (38m 16s):
Yeah. And then the points that you do accumulate, which accumulate very quickly speaking from experience, you can book through Southwest for not just Southwest flights, but also hotels, rental cars. You can even redeem them for gift cards. And that is one of the perks that I love most about this one.
4 (38m 33s):
I feel like I’ve heard you say so many times, oh, I didn’t pay for this flight. Cause I use my points.
3 (38m 38s):
I have gotten so many free flights from points,
2 (38m 42s):
Tobacco it up real quickly. You were talking about 20% cash back on Southwest in-flight drinks. Now this has nothing to do with the card, but like a little shout out to Southwest, remember pre COVID. They used to send us free drink.
3 (38m 55s):
I was going to say that actually as part of your unofficial welcome offer, you can expect to get drink coupons in the mail.
2 (39m 1s):
And the best thing about those though is like you get on the plane, you order a drink and they never take the coupons. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten free drinks on Southwest. And so I’m just like, they are so legit. Of course COVID has changed things. But yeah, Southwest
3 (39m 16s):
Side note, if you want to learn our hack for getting free drinks on a plane and not just free drinks, but free snacks, first-class treatment, even upgrades to higher classes on planes. We have a hack for you. It works every time in some fashion or another. All you have to do is leave us a written five star review on apple podcasts, send us a screenshot, either DMS on Instagram, Email, us Travel Squad Podcast at gmail.com. And we will send you our hat
2 (39m 43s):
I’ve even gotten. Thank you notes from the pilot, from this hack,
3 (39m 47s):
We’ve even gotten locals recommendations on the destination. We’re going to written out for us. Yes
2 (39m 52s):
3 (39m 53s):
They really take care of you. But anyway, back to the Southwest travel card that we’re talking about here, some of the other perks that they have that most travel credit cards do have as well, is that rental car coverage purchase protection for up to four months, extended warranty protections on a variety of things that you purchase, like electronics that lost luggage, reimbursement and travel accident insurance. This is that health insurance for a minimum of $250,000.
4 (40m 22s):
3 (40m 23s):
Yes it is. So it saves yourself anywhere from 20 to 30 or $40 per trip that you don’t have to spend on your health insurance, going into some of the pros, some more of the pros anyway, a list status. This is similar to what we were talking about earlier with Delta’s medallion miles, medallion status. It’s an elite group that gets you that priority boarding those priority check-ins and security lane access. It helps you earn rapid rewards points faster on each flight that you purchase. You can actually even get same day standby. So they treat you better. You have a dedicated, a list member phone line, go straight to the boss at Southwest,
4 (41m 3s):
Never called and gone straight to the boss. Kim,
3 (41m 5s):
This is Kim with the Southwest rapid Rhodes priority card. Can I speak to the boss, please
4 (41m 11s):
Bring in the CEO for you,
3 (41m 12s):
Zip me right in like, hello. Misty’s So those are some of the amazing perks. There’s also one other perk that I think is really great about Southwest and that is their companion pass. Now anybody can earn the companion pass status and it has to do with how many miles you’ve flown, how many number of flights you’ve taken in a year. It’s
1 (41m 33s):
25 flights per year
3 (41m 35s):
To earn that status. But when you have this credit card, it helps you earn those points even faster. So you get that companion pass quicker, and then you can bring somebody on a flight with you for
1 (41m 48s):
Free, just pay the taxes
3 (41m 50s):
4 (41m 51s):
Yes. On a side note, yes. This card helps you get there faster. One perk that they’ve recently added that Brittany got, and Brittany just picked up this card herself. They offered the free companion pass to her without having to meet those qualifications, but it’s only for a year. And then, so it would, they had a special welcome offer. It wasn’t for everybody. I think they see that we fly a lot. So they sent it to her cause we are rapid rewards members. So if you fly Southwest a lot and you see them offering that to you, if you’re good with your credit, let it be an incentive to you to think like, Hey, maybe I should do this and take advantage of that perk.
1 (42m 26s):
And yes, that was true. I was offered the companion pass, but it wasn’t on the rapid rewards priority card. It was on their lowest level. Would the annual fee of $69?
3 (42m 36s):
Yeah. So they have different kinds of welcome offers that they’ll rotate in throughout the year. So pay attention. But the one I mentioned earlier is when they have published right now on their website, as far as cons go, I would say as was all of these credit cards, the annual fee, it’s only $149. So not a huge con, but it is there. But with the perks that we just went over, the benefits that you get from the card in terms of the credits and the point accumulation that gets you free flights. I fully believe it’s paid for itself.
1 (43m 5s):
Now that Jamal and I have two different travel credit cards, we have the chase Sapphire reserve and the Southwest rapid rewards card. It’s like, what do we want to put on what card we used to just put everything on one carbon. And now it’s like, what do we put on this card? And so it’s now we’re putting all of our Southwest flights on the Southwest card, of course. So we can earn the most points.
3 (43m 28s):
Yeah. That was actually something I wanted to mention. The beginning is how to maximize the points for these cards. I have a Delta card as well. And if I’m purchasing a Delta flight, I use that Delta card. If I’m purchasing a Southwest flight, I’m going to use that Southwest card. And then you kind of have to think about which airline are you traveling more? And I do travel Southwest more. So I tend to lean more towards that one. But think about it. If you have a trip coming up to say, Miami Southwest doesn’t have good rates to Miami, but Delta does. So maybe I want to boost up my Delta card and get points there so I can get that flight free. Yeah. So really, you know, manipulate your way in there and fuck them hard guys. Fuck.
4 (44m 7s):
And you know, with these fees that we’ve talked about for the first three cards, you know, you get what you pay for and sometimes they are expensive, but if you utilize them correct, they can pay for themselves. If you don’t think you’re going to utilize them the way that you should for them to pay for themselves, you shouldn’t get ones with fees, let alone hefty ones. And that leads us perfectly into the last card here that we are going to talk about.
2 (44m 29s):
Yes. So I’m super excited be talking about the capital one venture one card do be careful. There’s a capital one venture and there’s a capital one venture one, and this is the capital one venture one. And I’m excited to rival Jamal’s Sapphire card.
4 (44m 45s):
Well, let’s see if this holds up.
2 (44m 47s):
All right. So first off, $0 annual fee, huge benefit of that card. And who is this card going to benefit most? Well, one, it doesn’t confine you to an airline to use your points. So if you are not partial to anyone airline, this is going to be a good card for you. And if you are a foodie, you do get five times miles on Uber eats, which is insane. I love that. Right crazy. So let’s get into it first off on the welcome offer. You earn 20,000 bonus smiles. When you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first three months of opening your account.
4 (45m 29s):
And again, a thousand dollars within the first three months is not a lot compared to other credit cards to earn bonuses. So that’s really solid.
2 (45m 36s):
I was just about to say, I can easily spend a thousand dollars in a month
4 (45m 39s):
Just in groceries in three months, spend $333. You know, you’re going to get up to a thousand, right,
2 (45m 46s):
Right. Or don’t even do the grocery and just do Uber eats.
4 (45m 49s):
2 (45m 51s):
So how are points accumulated? You earn unlimited 1.2, five miles per dollar on every purchase
4 (45m 59s):
Except for five times on who reads apparently.
2 (46m 1s):
Exactly. Thank you for throwing that out there. That is a hundred percent correct. So it’s five times miles with Uber eats. Now the important thing to know is that promotions change all the time. This is one of the promotions right now. So when you are listening to this, make sure that you are looking to make sure it’s still valid at the time in which you’re listening to this podcast gold episode. So the Perks of it is it is a 0% APR for the first 12 months. And it has no foreign transaction fees. That’s really great. 3% APR. Yeah. I mean, just rack it up for the first 12 months
4 (46m 36s):
You could spend your thousand within the first three months and then with the no interest, pay it off slowly. I don’t recommend that unless, you know, you’ll be able to do it, but that’s one of the ways you can really fuck them hard and use their perks to your advantage.
2 (46m 49s):
Exactly. Exactly. So other pros to getting this card is that you can use your venture miles on flights, hotels, and more. And then like I mentioned, this doesn’t confine you to an airline so you can transfer miles to any one of their 10 plus travel loyalty programs. Who are they acre live limitless
4 (47m 9s):
Core. I think like a core hotels.
2 (47m 13s):
Oh, is that okay? I do not know a core hotels, but I do know Aeromexico air France, KLM, Alitalia Asia miles, Avianca life miles Emirates. Skywards at the ed airway ever air fin, air jet blue Quantas and Singapore airlines.
3 (47m 35s):
It sounds like this card could be good for big international travelers with all those connections and then the 24 7 customer service.
2 (47m 41s):
Exactly. Yeah. It doesn’t matter where you are in the world. They’re going to be there to help you.
4 (47m 45s):
Well, it’s good that you can transfer the points to those major airlines also good in the sense that you can utilize the points to travel with any carrier outside those airlines.
2 (47m 55s):
Yeah, exactly. And you do have 24 hour travel assistance services. If your card is lost or stolen, or if you need an emergency replacement card, which is super clutch or a cash advance. And then finally they do give you a free trial. And when I was looking at this card, I was like, Hmm, what is that? But it’s a really cool app that it reaches out when it spots a bill higher than normal notifies you of suspicious charges and helps you resolve them, looks out for free trials and notifies you before they end, which is super, super clutch who’s ever paid for a trial that they didn’t want to pay for because they forgot that they needed to cancel it. And it checks in with you.
2 (48m 35s):
If it detects a tip higher than usual, that one made me laugh.
4 (48m 40s):
I’m like, oh, this person is Tiffany. Now normally, well, you know what? The servers go back and add tips after the fact when you leave. I know I used to be a server. Not that I ever did anything, I shouldn’t have added a tip that wasn’t really put on it, but mistakes happen. And so, you know, if you have sloppy handwriting, someone misreads it or someone is being nefarious and actually adds it. I guess that is a really cool feature to have. It’s like an app that protects you in a sense.
2 (49m 7s):
Yeah. You know what smell you highlighted it. Good. Because I was just kind of laughing, like how funny it’s like calling you out for being cheap.
4 (49m 13s):
Oh no, it’s an app that protects you.
2 (49m 14s):
There you go. So for the cons, there really isn’t that much. I mean, this is what you get for free. So yeah. There’s no lounge access. Yeah. There’s no paid for pre TSA global entry, but that’s okay. Look at all the other perks that you do get.
4 (49m 31s):
Yeah. And I think you really hit the nail on the head with this one, Zana, you know, it, there’s not a lot of frills with this one. And again, the reason for it, $0 fee associated with the card. So I think this is a good one. If you’re still deciding what you want to get, don’t really want to invest that much money and you travel often, but not incredibly often. This is a good one to get your toes wet with, try it out. It doesn’t confine you to a particular airline, get to understand the credit card systems and how to utilize them towards your benefit and then potentially upgrade. So I think for a free card and the flexibility that it gives you, this is a real good one in that sense, not
2 (50m 9s):
Only the flexibility, but the protection
4 (50m 11s):
3 (50m 12s):
Between the four cards that we talked about today, we have a good mix in here of cards that like this last one is good for beginners who were getting into travel credit cards. Maybe don’t have a high credit score or a high income, but can still qualify for this one and earn those perks all the way up to some of the most prestigious travel credit cards, which you need more income or credit history. And then you get all of those perks for those frequent travelers.
4 (50m 38s):
Any final thoughts for you ladies, after going over all these credit cards,
2 (50m 42s):
I feel like online shopping
3 (50m 44s):
4 (50m 46s):
Yeah. Credit cards can be a trap for some people as Zayna kind of highlighted on earlier, don’t utilize these in a way in which that you’re going to have mountains of debt to get free points, utilize them wisely. If you can utilize them wisely. They’re great tools. And when we were talking about the lounges earlier, I did forget to mention, don’t forget to tip the people inside, even though the stuff is free and their drinks food do tip the servers. It’s very good etiquette. And you should do that and put out good karma.
3 (51m 16s):
Since this whole episode was based on traveler questions. We don’t have a questions of the week segment this week, but I want to thank you guys all so much for tuning into this week’s episode. I hope you learned something. I hope you can fuck them hard with the tips we gave. You. Keep the adventures going with us. Follow us on Instagram. Subscribe to us on YouTube at Travel Squad Podcast. Send us in your questions for next week and have a great week.
2 (51m 40s):
He found the information in this episode to be useful. Or if you thought we were just playing funny, please make sure to share it with a friend that would enjoy it too
4 (51m 45s):
And as always guys, please subscribe, rate, and review our podcasts and tune in every Travel Tuesday for new episodes.
1 (51m 52s):
Stay tuned for next week’s episode, we have some more amazing adventures and tips in store for you guys.