Is the Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card Worth It?

For people with a high status in Bank of America Preferred Rewards, this card could be an easy way to earn travel.

Dustin WallerAugust 31, 2020
Is the Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Worth It?

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card offers you a simple way to earn valuable rewards on a travel credit card with a $0 annual fee. This is a good card to consider if you don’t like the restrictions of airline and hotel loyalty programs but want straightforward earning and easy redemption options.

Here are the features to consider when deciding whether the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card will be worthwhile for you.

Valuable welcome offer

The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card currently has a nice welcome offer: 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.

Reward earnings

This card offers a very straightforward way to earn rewards. You don’t have to worry about rotating categories or extra rewards in certain purchase categories. You simply earn 1.5 points per dollar on all purchases. If you book travel with the Bank of America Travel Center, you earn 3 points per dollar.

If you are a member of the Bank of America® Preferred Rewards program, your points-earning rate on the card goes up.

To qualify for the Bank of America® Preferred Rewards program, you need to hold a certain minimum balance in a Bank of America® checking or savings account or through investments with Merrill Lynch or Merrill Edge.

Gold members in the Preferred Rewards program earn a 25% bonus when they use this card while Platinum status Preferred Rewards members get a 50% bonus and top tier Platinum Honor members get a 75% bonus.

Redeeming your points

Redeeming your rewards for travel expenses is extremely easy. There are no complicated award charts or blackout dates to worry about.

You have the flexibility to book your travel however you want, then use your points to redeem as a statement credit against your travel charge at a rate of 1 cent per point. It's that simple.

The points from your Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card can be used for flights, hotels, cruises, car rentals, baggage fees, zoos, amusement parks, tolls and many other travel expenses. In most cases, you have up to 12 months after you make a travel purchase to redeem your points for a statement credit.

If you redeem your points for cash back instead of travel credits, your points are worth about 0.6 cent per point. For example, if you redeemed 2,500 points for cash, you would receive $15 in rewards.  So your points have more value when redeemed for travel charges than for cash back.

Foreign transaction fees

If you look at other popular no-annual fee credit cards, they charge up to a 3% foreign transaction fee.

The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card has no foreign transaction fees, which makes it a great choice when traveling outside the country.

Other benefits

The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card has a few other benefits useful for travelers:

  • Bank of America® offers a great benefit for museum lovers. Your Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card gives you access to Museums on Us. Through this program, you will get access to more than 225 museums across the country, for free, on the first full weekend of every month.

  • The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card features chip technology for extra security and easy use at over 130 countries.

  • Fraud protection is also a stable of the card and you'll be protected with a $0 Liability Guarantee and also get alerted of suspicious activity on your account.

Is the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card worth getting?

Even though this credit card offers no annual fee and has a valuable welcome offer, unless you hold Platinum or Platinum Honor status with the Bank of America® Preferred Rewards program, this credit card has a reward rate that's less than a 2% cash back credit card.

But, if you have higher levels of status with Bank of America®, this could be a great option for earning great rewards with no annual fee.

How to Maximize Your Rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2020, including those best for:

We want to hear from you and encourage a lively discussion among our users. Please help us keep our site clean and safe by following our posting guidelines, and avoid disclosing personal or sensitive information such as bank account or phone numbers. Any comments posted under NerdWallet’s official account are not reviewed or endorsed by representatives of financial institutions affiliated with the reviewed products, unless explicitly stated otherwise.