Best Credit Cards for Miles and Points Beginners

Waikiki, Hawaii

Waikiki, Hawaii

People often come across my Blog in search for some­thing travel related and are aston­ished by the miles and points world and all the pos­si­bil­i­ties. They want to know how to get in the game for free travel and the best way to enter. Friends and fam­ily and their friends will often hear about all the free trips they’re tak­ing and then have the same ques­tion. The best way to start rack­ing up miles and points is by sign­ing up for a few credit card bonuses, but begin­ners need to know what the right credit cards are. So I put together a list of credit cards for begin­ner travelers.

Before starting, I’d like to issue a bit of a warn­ing. You should only sign up for credit cards if you already have good credit and can pay off the bal­ance in full every month. The APR on high yield rewards cards is high and car­ry­ing a bal­ance and pay­ing inter­est will quickly negate the value of any rewards you may earn. If you have the dis­ci­pline to not rack up debt and keep your finances orga­nized, the miles and points game can be extremely reward­ing (and it is for me with lux­ury hotels and first class tick­ets). Although I lose 3–5 points on my credit score when I apply for a new credit card, it comes back after a few months. My score also ben­e­fits from hav­ing a low credit usage ratio, which means I have a lot of credit and use very lit­tle of it, mak­ing me look very respon­si­ble in the credit card bureau scor­ing model. After years of col­lect­ing miles and points, I’ve been able to main­tain an excel­lent credit score of 750 and take great trips at the same time! Continue reading