View random article

A Guide to Airline Credit Cards

Airline credit cards are great for people who frequently travel and/or are frequent flyers. Most airline credit cards offer travel reward based upon travel related expenses charged to the credit account and for purchases of air travel and/or hotel accommodations. Airline credit cards offer significant reward and incentives for those who purchase air travel or hotel accommodations, cruises, car rentals, and other benefits. Most airline credit cards allow account holders to accumulate points redeemable for free flights with up to 250 major airlines, earn frequent flyer miles for a frequent flyer account, or earn points toward free air travel and other travel benefits, like hotel stays, cruises, and car rentals.

Airline Points Credit Cards

Many airlines offer credit cards which reward card holders for purchasing air travel and for paying for travel related expenses with an airline credit card. These cards, known as airline points credit cards, are generally issued by airlines and offer rewards to customers who exclusively use one airline or hotel chain. Airline points credit cards allow users benefits which may significantly enhance card holders' travel experiences. Airline points credit cards offer money saving promotions, complimentary companion tickets, and upgrades. Additionally, most airline points credit cards allow certain card holders VIP advantages, from free checked bags to access to an airline's VIP lounge within an airport, to improve and add value to the traveling experience.

Airline Miles Credit Cards

Airline miles credit cards work similarly to airline points credit cards. Airline miles credit cards are more flexible but do not offer the same reward value as airline points credit cards. Airline miles credit cards award point values, generally in the form of air miles, which can be accumulated and exchanged for flights with any airline. Most airline miles credit cards allow card holders the option to redeem air miles or point accumulations during any season without seat restrictions and may even extend to car rentals, hotel accommodations, and foreign exchange transaction fees for traveling abroad. Some airline miles credit cards also offer account holders free travel insurance for delayed or canceled flights.

Choosing The Best Airline Credit Card

Deciding upon the best airline credit card requires comparison shopping and considerations regarding the frequency use and travel. Finding the best airline credit card often begins with using an airline company with a local hub or an airline company which provides service to a frequently used hub. Also, choosing an airline credit card which has no expiry period and no limit for the accumulation of rewards points or frequent flyer miles allows card holders to make the best use of any rewards earned. To ensure any travel rewards received from airline credit cards are well suited to your financial situation, always compare annual fees, interest rates, and any additional charges incurred as a result of travel rewards. Avoid purchasing travel related items with airline credit cards to earn or collect more rewards or miles as it is often best to pay the balance of a fare with your airline credit card. Many airline credit cards offer sign on bonuses with free airline tickets to those who simply apply for one of their credit accounts which can translate to advantages for card holders. Businesses may also benefit from airline credit cards as many corporate travel expenses may be charged and allow businesses to save money while accumulating rewards. If you receive a new airline credit card, always keep your former credit card open especially if it has no annual fee, as canceling credit cards may adversely affect your credit score and credit history.


Airline credit cards are a valuable tool for people who travel regularly for business or leisure. Airline credit cards offer account holders many travel advantages and benefits that other credit cards do not. Comparison shopping is key to maximizing your chances of finding a suitable airline credit card to only add to and improve your overall travel experience.

Featured in Finance