BankAmericard Travel Rewards
Annual fee: None
APR: 0% for first 12 months, 15.24-23.24% after that (variable with market rate)
Best perk(s): Twenty thousand bonus points if you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days -- that's a $200 statement credit toward travel purchases
Red flags: By sacrificing the annual fee, you're also sacrificing the higher earning potential of cards that do charge one
Who's this card good for: Definitely Bank of America customers, but also low spenders and new credit card holders looking to get some sort of return on their credit usage
There are a few ways in which the BankAmericard Travel Rewards card has a leg up on its competition. For starters, there's no annual fee. Plus you only need to spend $1,000 in the first 90 days rather than $3,000-$4,000 to get the introductory bonus points, which is great for low spenders; if you're somebody who's likely to hit that $3,000-$4,000 mark, however, you'll score much higher returns with other cards. Cardholders earn 1.5 points on every $1 spent and it is all redeemed through statement credits -- so there's no restrictions, no blackout dates, no organizing your trips around what you're able to redeem; you just redeem points for a statement credit on flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars, baggage fees, etc.
There are also no foreign transaction fees and the card includes auto rental collision damage waiver protection, travel accident insurance, and lost luggage reimbursement (a big deal when you're traveling abroad and your bags decide not to travel with you).
This biggest bang for the buck here is reserved for Bank of America banking customers, who are eligible for 25-75% points dividends through their Preferred Rewards Program. Even if customers are not eligible for Preferred status, they will still receive a 10% dividend on points earned. Overall, this is a great introductory travel card, but if you're a Bank of America customer -- it's a no-brainer.