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With strategic and responsible spending, sign-up bonuses are worth hundreds of dollars in cash
Listen… we all love using credit card points for free travel but the coronavirus pandemic is making future travel more and more difficult. It’s also putting millions of people out of a job.
However, this doesn’t mean that signing up for travel credit cards during the pandemic isn’t a good idea. There are some issuers that have the best credit card welcome offers that are worth hundreds of dollars in value. You can then use these points towards tons of award redemptions!
I previously highlighted how you can use your current stash of credit card points and airline frequent flyer miles on everyday expenses. From Amazon to Doordash to Panera Bread gift cards, those points could help during these tough financial times.
But even if you don’t have years worth of credit card points, banks are still offering sizable credit card offers. In fact, we’ve listed three credit card options below, which in our opinion, have the best credit card welcome offers as of this writing.
Basically, these points are an easy way to get really great deals without shelling out money.
Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Chase Sapphire Preferred has one of the best welcome offers in the market. The card has a $95 annual fee which is pretty reasonable because new cardholders can get 60,000 Chase points after spending $4,000 on the card within three months. It also comes with a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit.
The card also lets you earn 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards(R), 3X points on dining, and 2X points on all other travel purchases, plus more.
Chase advertises that the 60,000 points are worth $750 in travel. This is absolutely true but who is planning vacations for the foreseeable future? Fortunately for us, Chase points can be redeemed for one cent each for cash, meaning those 60,000 points can be converted to $750 in cash with the click of a button all for using a specific credit card for four months.
Let’s say you spend $4,000 on a new Chase Sapphire Preferred card and receive the additional 60,000-point welcome bonus. That means that you would have at least 64,000 points, and those points have a value of at most $790 in cash. After taking into account the $95 annual fee, that leaves you with $695.
Yes… that’s a lot of money to spend on a credit card. That level of spending won’t be possible for everybody and it’s especially hard for those who have lost their primary source of income. But let’s say you can avoid paying interest and pay your bill on time each month. If so, the Chase Sapphire Preferred welcome bonus is a fantastic way to rack up points that are worth hundreds of dollars courtesy of Chase bank.
Read More: Chase Sapphire Preferred Review + Perks
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
In terms of earning credit card points for award travel, I usually steer clear of Capital One. However, when it comes to getting a decent welcome offer that’s worth hundreds of dollars, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card presents itself as a potential option.
The card currently has a welcome of 60,000 bonus (worth $600 in travel) if you spend $3,000 within three months and a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck(R). This card has an annual fee of $95 and zero foreign transactions fees. For the rewards, you’ll earn 5x miles on hotels and car rentals that are booked directly through Capital One Travel and 2x miles on all spending.
The Venture card could also be more suitable for someone who has already signed up for multiple credit cards within the past two years. Chase has a restriction called the “5/24 rule” which prohibits people from signing up for Chase cards if they have opened five credit cards within the past 24 calendar months.
There are a few exceptions and nuances, but if you would fall into this category, perhaps the Capital One Venture card would be a better option.
Citi Premier Card
The last card I’ll highlight is the Citi Premier credit card. The welcome bonus for this card various but you should get a welcome bonus of ThankYou points. The card also usually comes with a $95 annual fee.
Fantastic, right? Sure, it’s a big spending requirement, but try to think that you can exchange those hard-earned ThankYou points for as cash.
The Citi Premier card has a small value advantage over the Capital One card. But while Chase has the 5/24 rule, Capital One is notorious for being more difficult in approving the Capital One Venture card to individuals with less than stellar credit.
There’s no hard and fast rule to the number, but Capital One’s fickleness is noteworthy. Citi, meanwhile, is probably the easiest bank in terms of issuing credit cards. So if you’ve recently signed up for a lot of credit cards or have a below-average credit score, the Citi Premier card might be the best fit.
While the economy is taking a downturn, credit card issuers are maintaining their lucrative sign-up bonuses. With strategic and responsible spending, those sign-up bonuses are worth hundreds of dollars in cash.
All three cards offer fantastic opportunities for you to rack up a huge amount of points. But remember, once you pay interest, those points are pretty much useless so make sure to use your credit card responsibly. If you’re having doubts on your credit card knowledge, you can sign up for our travel concierge to get unlimited credit card and award booking assistance.