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Best Hotel Credit Cards of 2015

Best Hotel Credit Cards of 2015

Hey eCheck.org fans. I have a brand new and updated version of this article right here if you follow the link to our Best Hotel Credit Cards article.

Using a hotel credit card provides you with many perks and benefits on hotels stays, as many of the rewards have their highest value when they are redeemed with a hotel. There are numerous cards to choose from and it can seem a daunting task to pick the right one for you.

You will find that some of the cards are designed for users loyal to a specific hotel. Such as the Hilton card which rewards you for staying at the Hilton. Furthermore, you will discover that some of the cards designed for 5 star hotel stays, while some are geared towards popular family hotels such as the Holliday Inn as seen with the IHG Rewards Card. Most hotel cards are co- branded with a particular hotel or chain of hotels operated by the same company.This makes it  important to realize that a hotel credit card is designed for consumers who strictly stay at the same hotels on a frequent bases. If that is not you, you may be better suited with a cash back or miles card instead.

Tips for Picking the Right Hotel Credit Cards

Now that we know what the best hotel credit cards are, but how about choosing the best one that suits you? Here are some tips on choosing the right card.

Hotel Chains: The most important thing is to pick a card that offers stays at hotels that you like or hotels that will be in the areas you will be travelling. If you get the Marriott card and there are no Marriott hotels in some of your destinations then that card would do no good for you. Choose a card that offers a variety of hotel chains so you do not have to worry about the location that doesn’t have a particular chain of hotel.These cards may be harder to find  and you may be better suited with a miles or general rewards card as a substitute.

Keep your budget in mind: It is essential to keep in mind the cost of some of the hotels associated with this card. For example if you get the card that offers rooms at the 5 star expensive Carlson Rezidor it may be way out of your price range. This means you will have to spend more money  to accumulate points then you would with a less pricier hotel. Do not get a card just because it is co-branded with an expensive hotel when it is out of your price range. There are other options available such as the IHG Rewards Club MasterCard.

Points Redemption : Every hotel credit card has a different system in place when it comes to redeeming reward points. The most important thing you have to look for with this is whether the points expire if they are not used by a specified time period, which is usually a once year. If you don’t use them in time the points will be removed and you will have lost all access to them. So always be aware and read the terms and conditions or simply call the customer service and ask.

Furthermore, when it comes to booking rooms with your reward points it is better to do it a long time in advance. Hotels only hold a certain number of rooms for reward redemption so this is why you must act quick. This is especially true if you are planning to book during a busy travel season such as the holidays. It is advised to book your rooms one year in advance.

It can be tough choosing the best card and if you are still a little bit confused. Below is a breakdown of a specific card for your need. For non frequent and average travellers it can seem difficult to choose a card as many seem geared towards frequent fliers and business travel etc. Many of them are co branded and you definitely don’t always stay at the same hotel chain. We got you covered with the best card for the average and frequent traveler.

Hey eCheck.org fans. I have a brand new and updated version of this article right here if you follow the link to our Best Hotel Credit Cards article.

Best Hotel Card for the Average Traveler

The IHG Rewards Club MasterCard

  • can be used at a variety of hotels, such as the family friendly Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, and intercontinental hotels and resorts
  • can earn a lot of points on gas and grocery, which means you don’t have to be a frequent traveller to earn points for travel
  • has great introductory offer of 60 000 points after only spending $1000

For all the frequent business travellers there can also be a lot of tough choices on choosing the best hotel card. Many of them are co branded, so deciding which is the best one could be tough. Keep things in mind such as the location of the hotel chain and you’re experience if you have previously stayed at any of the hotel chains.

Best Co-branded Hotel Xard for the Frequent/Business Traveler

The Marriott Reward Premier Credit Card

  • ideal for frequent travellers because a bulk of the reward points come form hotel stays, airline purchases, as well as rental car purchases
  • There are Marriott hotels located all over the world
  • good for those who dine out frequently as a high rate of points are awarded

Best Hotel Credit Cards of 2015

Here’s our top picks for the best hotel cards as of 2015.

 IHG Rewards Club Mastercard

Benefits:

  • earn 60 000 bonus points after spending the first 1000 dollars
  • earn 5X points for ever $1 spent on hotel, earn 2 X points on purchases on gas and groceries, and 1X points on all other purchases

Pros

  • no foreign transaction fees
  • includes 1 annual free night
  • Large introductory offer is well worth it

Cons

  • doesn’t include upscale, 5 star hotels
  • better options for frequent travellers

Major standout feature

  • the wide variety of purchases that can be made to accumulate points

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal if you are a budget traveller
  • ideal if you stay at average hotel rooms
  • not ideal if you want classy hotel room
  • ideal for frequent travellers who travel with family

Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card

Benefits:

  • earn 50 000 bonus points after you spend the first $2000 on purchases
  • for every $1 spent, earn 5 points at 4,000 Marriott locations, 2 points on airline ticket purchases and 1 point everywhere else
  • receive 1 free night every year

Pros

  • rewards can accumulate quick if you are a frequent user of Marriott
  • no foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • has annual fee
  • need to have excellent credit to qualify
  • have to stay at Marriott

Major standout feature

  • earn 5 points for every dollar spent at Marriott locations

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal if you are loyal to Marriott
  • ideal if you travel very frequently
  • not ideal if you don’t stay at Marriott often
  • not ideal if you like to stay at a variety of hotels

Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card From American Express

Benefits:

  • earn 30 000 bonus points after you make $3000 in purchases after first 3 months
  • earn 5 starpoints for each dollar spent at participating SPG hotels(Sheraton, the Westin)
  • receive free in room premium wifi for being a cardmember

Pros

  • has a high reward rate
  • no foreign transaction fee
  • potential to earn several free nights

Cons

  • has annual fee
  • most stays limited to Starwood properties
  • need excellent credit to qualify

Major standout feature

  • free wifi in hotel rooms as well as no foreign transaction fee

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal for the frequent traveller
  • ideal if you like or use SPG hotels(Sheraton, The Westin)
  • not ideal if you don’t use SPG hotels

Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signature Card

Benefits:

  • earn 75 000 Hilton Honors points after spending $2000 in purchases within first three months
  • earn 6 HHonours bonus points for every $1 spent at any participating Hilton Hotel
  • earn 3 HHhonors bonus points for every $1 spent at supermarkets, drugstores, and gas stations
  • earn 2 HHonors bonus points for every $1 spent on all other purchases

Pros

  • no annual fee
  • can earn points quickly when used at a Hilton hotel
  • become HH Silver Status for being a card member

Cons

  • limited to staying at the Hilton or hotels within Hilton portfolio

Major standout feature

  • the intro offer of 75 000 bonus points is fantastic. The 75 000 bonus points would be equivalent to spending $12 500 at a Hilton Hotel.

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal if you are loyal to staying at the Hilton
  • don’t have to be a frequent traveller as you earn points on gas and groceries etc.
  • not ideal if you like staying at wide variety of hotels

Club Carlson Rewards Visa Signature Card

Benefits:

  • earn 50 000 gold points after your first purchase, plus an additional 10 000 points after you spend $1500 on card within first 3 months
  • earn 6 Club Carlson points for every 1$ spent at Club Carlson hotels
  • earn 3 Club Carlson points for every other purchase

Pros

  • receive another 25 000 points for renewing the card every year
  • awarded 1 free hotel night when points are redeemed for two or more consecutive award notes

Cons

  • has annual fee which is not waived in the first year
  • have to stay at Carlson Rezidor hotels
  • has annual fee of $75

Major standout feature

  • 25 000 bonus points awarded for renewing your card every year

Is this card right for me?

  • Ideal for high rollers/big spenders who are loyal to Carlson Rezidor hotels
  • ideal for the frequent travellers, especially business travel
  • not ideal for the average person who takes one vacation a year

American Express Hilton HHonors

Benefits

  • earn 40 000 points after only spending $750 dollars within first 3 months
  • 7 Hilton points for each $1 spent at Hilton hotels
  • 5 Hilton points for every $1 spent at restaurants supermarkets, and gas
  • 3 points for every $1 on everything else

Pros

  • free hilton silver elite status
  • no annual fee
  • only have to spend $750 to get the 40 000 bonus points

Cons

  • has a 2.7% foreign translation fee
  • have to spend $20 000 in 1 year to get gold elite status

Major standout feature

  • great intro offers as you only have to spend $750 to get the 40 000 bonus points

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal if you are stay at the Hilton frequently
  • you don’t have to be a frequent flier to benefit as you can earn points on dining and gas as well as groceries

Expedia+ card from Citi

Features

  • earn 10 000 Expedia Reward points after $1000 in purchases in first 3 months
  • earn 3 Expedia bonus points or every $1 spent on Expedia purchases , such as flights, and hotels
  • earn Expedia bonus point for evert $1 spent on other purchases

Pros

  • no annual fee
  • earn Expedia + silver status as long as you own the card
  • reward can be used for a wide variety of travel related items

Cons

  • need to have excellent credit
  • need to book through Expedia

Major standout feature

  • the inclusion of a free Expedia silver + status for being a card owner

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal if you usually book trips through Expedia
  • not ideal if you don’t use Expedia to book trips
  • good for the average traveller

Capital One Venture One Rewards Card

Benefits

  • earn 20 000 bonus miles when you spend $1000 on purchases in first 3 months
  • fly at any airline, or stay at any hotel, no restrictions
  • 0% intro A.P.R. for 1 year
  • earn unlimited 1.25 miles per dollar on every purchase

Pros

  • unlimited rewards rate
  • no foreign transaction fee
  • miles don’t expire
  • no annual fee
  • can use several airlines/hotels

Cons

  • charges high rate on cash advance fee/late penalty

Major standout feature

  • you can earn unlimited 1.25 miles, meaning the more you spend the more you will earn in miles/rewards

Is this card right for me?

  • ideal for the infrequent traveller as you can use your points towards any hotel
  • not ideal for frequent travellers
  • ideal if you travel very few times per year

Fairmont Visa Signature Card

Benefits:

  • earn 2 complimentary nights after you spend $3000 in purchases within first 3 months
  • earn 5 points for every $1 spent at the Fairmont

About The Author

Ben Todd

Ben was a seriously broke graduate student with bad credit who after finding himself rejected for any sort of credit card or loan for most of his adult life, finally decided to get his financial life in order. ‘

He spent several years reading as many financial advice books and blogs as he could.

And suprisingly, Ben found he actually LIKED the topic of personal finance; after fixing his own finances, starting his own successful work at home website business, and using his earnings to get out of debt, created echeck.org to help others do likewise!

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