5 Things to Know About the Expedia Credit Card

If you're not loyal to one airline or hotel chain, an Expedia credit card may fit you. But point values vary, and casual Expedia users have better options.

Erin HurdOctober 21, 2020
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5 Things to Know About the Expedia Credit Card

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In a crowded world of discount travel sites, Expedia is a longtime fan favorite. Whether you’re looking to fuel your wanderlust or find a basic hotel for a work trip, you can likely score a good deal.

And if you’re a loyal and frequent user of the site, an Expedia credit card can help you juice up your rewards earnings. There are two possibilities:

The Voyager version of the card can be a particularly good bargain despite its annual fee, thanks to its decent bonus, solid ongoing rewards and annual travel credit.

But point values can vary dramatically, and for casual Expedia fans, there are better and more rewarding travel credit cards to choose from.

Here are five things to know about Expedia credit cards.

1. You can choose no annual fee or richer incentives

There’s a basic $0-annual-fee version of the card, but if you’re willing to pay an annual fee you’ll ramp up your rewards and perks.

Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi

Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi

Annual fee

$0

$95

New cardmember bonus

Earn 15,000 Expedia Rewards bonus points after $1,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening - redeemable for up to $210 towards your stay at a VIP Access™ Hotel.

Earn 25,000 Expedia Rewards bonus points after $2,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening - redeemable for up to $350 towards your stay at a VIP Access™ Hotel.

Rewards

  • 3 points for every $1 you spend on eligible Expedia purchases, including flights, hotels, activities and travel packages.

  • 1 point for every $1 spent on other purchases.

  • 4 points for every $1 you spend on eligible Expedia purchases, including flights, hotels, activities and travel packages.

  • 2 points for every $1 spent on dining at restaurants and entertainment.

  • 1 point for every $1 spent on other purchases.

Anniversary bonus

None

5,000 Expedia Rewards bonus points after you spend $10,000 in the prior cardmembership year

Other credits

None

$100 Annual Air Travel Fee Credit - Statement credit can be used toward airline incidentals, such as checked bags, in-flight entertainment or refreshments, and in-flight Wi-Fi carriers, or for either the Global Entry or the TSA Precheck application fee

The Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi may appeal to frugal, infrequent travelers who are opposed to annual fees. But all things considered, the Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi is the better deal.

If you make full use of the $100 annual air travel fee credit, you can more than make up for the annual fee, and that's before taking into account the sign-up bonus, ongoing rewards and potential anniversary points.

Nerd tip: To get either Expedia credit card, you must first become a member of the Expedia Rewards loyalty program. Through that program, even without an Expedia credit card, you earn 2 points for every $1 spent on things like hotels, cars and cruises, and 1 point for every $5 on flights. Any points you earn with an Expedia credit card would be on top of those baseline rates.

2. Point values vary significantly ...

Expedia points can have really good value, but also not-so-great value. That’s because not all Expedia bookings with points are created equal.

As the new member bonus for the Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi states, 15,000 Expedia Rewards points are redeemable for up to $210. That’s a solid value of 1.4 cents per point — which is nearly as much value as you’d get from Chase Ultimate Rewards® points when you hold a premium Chase Sapphire Reserve® and redeem them for travel.

But that 1.4 cents-per-point value is the best-case scenario. You’ll only be able to redeem your Expedia points for that value when you use them to book a stay with an Expedia VIP Access hotel. While these VIP hotels are vetted for high customer service and quality standards (and you can filter your Expedia search to show only these options), there are only about 8,000 of them. The hotel you want to book may not fall into the VIP Access category.

If you’re not using your points to book a VIP Access hotel room, they’ll be worth only half as much at 0.7 cent apiece, which is well below the industry standard of at least a penny per point.

It’s also important to know that not all Expedia bookings will qualify for bonus rewards on your Expedia credit card. The following bookings don’t count as eligible Expedia bookings:

  • Expedia Rate hotels booked through Expedia but not prepaid.

  • Properties booked through the "vacation rental" tab.

  • Car reservations not booked as part of a travel package.

  • Cruise bookings.

3. ... And they can expire, too

Unlike some loyalty programs that boast points that never expire, Expedia points are on a timetable. You need to have account activity — either a new booking or a redemption — every 18 months in order to keep your Expedia points alive. If you’re only booking on Expedia once every couple of years, this credit card may not be the best option.

4. You’ll get automatic status

Who doesn’t like the red-carpet treatment when they stay at hotels? The Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi and the Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi come with varying levels of elite status:

  • Silver membership: You’ll get this status automatically with the Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi. As a Silver member, you can enjoy perks like free breakfast and spa credits at VIP Access hotels, and you can earn 10% more Expedia points when you book. Usually you have to stay seven nights or spend $5,000 a year on Expedia bookings to earn Silver membership.

  • Gold membership: If you have the Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi, you’ll get automatic Expedia Gold membership. It entitles you to free room upgrades at VIP Access hotels when available (in addition to free breakfast and spa credits), plus you’ll earn 30% more Expedia points on bookings. To earn this status without the credit card, you’d have to stay 15 hotel nights or spend $10,000 in a year on Expedia bookings.

5. You won't want to carry a balance

Travel credit cards aren’t known for having low APRs, and the Expedia credit cards are no exception. The ongoing interest rate on both the Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi and the Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi can be quite high.

The ongoing APR is 14.99% - 22.99% Variable APR for the Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi.

The ongoing APR is 13.99% - 21.99% Variable APR for the Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi.

Information related to the Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi and the Expedia® Rewards Voyager Card from Citi has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of these cards.

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