The Best Travel Credit Card Welcome Bonus Offers Right Now

Check out the latest and greatest offers for adding a new travel credit card to your wallet.
Aug 4, 2022

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There are a number of travel rewards credit cards with boosted welcome bonus offers to have on your radar.

Here’s a look at some of the best travel credit card offers out there right now, based on the value of the welcome bonus offers, which were calculated using NerdWallet's valuations of credit card and loyalty program points.

This is the shortlist of the best travel card deals of 2022:

New travel card offers

Card name

Welcome offer

Value of welcome offer

Hotels.com® Rewards Visa® Credit Card

Get 3 reward nights worth $375 total (max $125 per night)* with qualifying purchases. Get 2 reward nights worth $250 total (max $125 per night), when you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, get another reward night worth $125 when you spend $4,000 in total purchases within the first 6 months. *Excludes taxes and fees. If a night costs less than $125, you won't get the difference.

N/A.

$375.

Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card

Earn 125,000 Marriott Bonvoy Bonus Points after spending $5,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 8/31/22. Terms Apply.

0.7 cent.

$875.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

1.5 cents when redeemed for travel in the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal, but possibly more if transferred to partners.

$900 - 1,140.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back!

1 cent with the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, but as much as 1.9 cents if you also hold the Chase Sapphire Reserve®.

$300 - $570.

IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card

Earn 140,000 Bonus Points + 1 Free Night after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

0.8 cent.

$1,440.

United℠ Explorer Card

Earn 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.

1 cent.

$700.

United Quest℠ Card

Earn 70,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.

1 cent.

$800.

Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card

Buy one ticket, get one for just the taxes and fees ($0 fare plus taxes and fees from $22) and receive 40,000 bonus miles with this offer. To qualify, make $3,000 or more in purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account.

1.1 cents.

$440.

Alaska Airlines Visa® Business card

Get 70,000 bonus miles plus Alaska's Famous Companion Fare™ from $121 ($99 fare plus taxes and fees from $22) with this offer. To qualify, make $4,000 or more in purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account.

1.1 cents.

$770.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel.

1 cent in the Capital One Travel portal, but as much as 1.8 cents with transfer partners.

$750 - $1,350.

Citi Premier® Card

Earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

Capital One miles can be redeemed for 1 cent each when booking travel directly, but NerdWallet values Citi ThankYou points at 1.5 cent each if you take advantage of transfer partners.

$800 - $1,200.

A closer look

Learn more about these new cardholder incentives, each vying to offer the best travel card welcome bonus offer.

Hotels.com® Rewards Visa® Credit Card
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Hotels.com® Rewards Visa® Credit Card

  • Annual fee: $0.

  • Value of welcome bonus: $375.

  • Why you should get it: This bonus has one extra reward night, making it perfect for a long weekend stay.

  • Who should get it: People who prefer booking through Hotels.com and know their loyalty program well. Since the annual fee is $0, it won't cost you anything to take advantage of the welcome bonus and hold it in your wallet.

  • Who should skip it: This is the lowest value bonus on the list, so you might be better off with a more flexible travel card and an easier-to-use loyalty program.

Earn 125,000 Marriott Bonvoy Bonus Points after spending $5,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 8/31/22. Terms Apply.

  • Annual fee: $125.

  • Value of welcome bonus: $875.

  • Why you should get it: This bonus is 50,000 points more than the previous offer, pushing up the value close to the $900 mark. This business card has a good balance of business-related bonus categories and everyday-spending categories, plus automatic Gold elite status. Terms apply.

  • Who should get it: Business owners who frequent Marriotts and want to earn more Marriott points on more bonus categories than they would with the personal version of this card.

  • Who should skip it: People can earn Marriott points just as easily on a general travel credit card with transferrable points. Marriott is a transfer partner of both Chase Ultimate Rewards® and AmEx Membership Rewards, so getting a card that earns one of those is a better choice for most people. If free nights are what you're after, there are also other cards with easier-to-use free night certificates.

Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card
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Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

  • Annual fee: $550.

  • Value of welcome bonus: $900 - $1,140. You can redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards® earned on this card for about 1.5 cents each when you book travel through the Chase travel portal, but points could be worth even more if you take advantage of travel transfer partners.

  • Why you should get it: This card might not be the most exciting premium travel card out there, but there are a few key ways it still stands out. The 1.5 cent value in the travel portal (and on applicable Pay Yourself Back purchases) still beats its AmEx and Capital One competitors, which usually only offer a value of 1 cent if you book in the issuer's travel portal. Also, there are fewer restrictions on how to use the $300 annual travel statement credit, which can be applied to any travel even if you didn't book through the portal or you didn't pay for "airline fees" like checked bags.

  • Who should get it: People who collect Chase Ultimate Rewards® points and want premium travel card benefits, like lounge access. Some travelers can get the most value transferring the points to favorable transfer partners, but if redeeming the points in the Chase travel portal also isn't a bad option.

  • Who should skip it: If you've already got a premium travel card, there's probably no need to get overlapping benefits. People with the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card currently are also ineligible to hold the Chase Sapphire Reserve®.

Chase Freedom Unlimited Credit Card
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Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back!

  • Annual fee: $0.

  • Value of welcome bonus: $300. But it could be as much as $570 based on the other Chase Sapphire cards you might have and whether you take advantage of your the Sapphire card's transfer partners. More on how that works below.

  • Why you should get it: With this welcome offer, you'll get an excellent rewards rate on your everyday spending: 6.5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 4.5% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service, and 3% on all other purchases (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year). Compare that to the usual 1% people get back on most purchases.

  • Who should get it: If you have a Sapphire card, the Chase Freedom Unlimited® is a must-have, especially while this offer is available. The secret is the Chase Freedom Unlimited® actually rewards Chase Ultimate Rewards® points that you can redeem for cash back at a rate of 1 cent per point. But if you have a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Chase Sapphire Reserve®, you can transfer your points from your Chase Freedom Unlimited® to your Sapphire card to be able to redeem them at a rate of 1.25 cents or 1.5 cents each in the travel portal. Or better yet, you could transfer those points to airline and hotel partners where you might find even more value.

  • Who should skip it: If you're looking to add a huge chunk of points to your reserves for an upcoming trip, this card probably won't do the trick since it's based on spending for an entire year (or the first $20,000 you spend, whatever comes first). Look into some of the other best travel cards to top off your account instead.

IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card
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Earn 140,000 Bonus Points + 1 Free Night after spending $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

  • Annual fee: $99.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $1,440. NerdWallet values IHG points at 0.8 cent each.

  • Why you should get it: This sign-up bonus added a free night worth up to 40,000 points. Plus, this card just got an entire revamp earlier this year. You'll now earn higher rewards rate on all purchases, including up to 26x on IHG spending, 5x on travel, gas stations and restaurants, and 3x on everything else. Plus, it comes with an anniversary night worth up to 40,000 points each year.

  • Who should get it: If you're usually underwhelmed by hotel credit card benefits, this card might change your mind. It comes with an anniversary night that's much easier to use than other reward nights that come with a low points-per-night cap. That's because you can always add IHG points from your account to supplement the 40,000-point value of the anniversary night. Plus the automatic elite status that comes with it is already the second-highest tier, so you'll already eligible for space-upgrades and other sweet perks.

  • Who should skip it: People who don't stay often at IHG properties. IHG is a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards® so if you only need IHG points occasionally, you'd probably be better served by one of the Chase Sapphire cards.

Chase United Airlines Mileage Plus Credit Card
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Earn 50,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.

  • Annual fee: $0 intro for the first year, then $95.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $700. NerdWallet values United miles at 1 cent each.

  • Why you should get it: This two-part sign-up bonus has manageable spending requirements, and in total, it's 20,000 miles more than the previous offer. That means you can get about $200 more in award travel from the sign-up bonus alone.

  • Who should get it: United frequent flyers will love the perks like one free checked bag and two complimentary day passes per year to the United Club. Plus, international travelers can take advantage of United's Star Alliance partners and the Excursionist Perk.

  • Who should skip it: If United doesn't fly often out of your home airport, you probably won't get much use out of the miles you earn on this card.

Chase United Quest Credit Card
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Earn 70,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.

  • Annual fee: $250.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $800. NerdWallet values United miles at 1 cent each.

  • Why you should get it: The United Quest℠ Card is a rare mid-tier travel card. The annual fee that's not as scary as it looks because you'll get a $125 United statement credit every year, which essentially cuts the annual fee in half. You'll get more perks than the United℠ Explorer Card for just $30 more per year (assuming you use the annual $125 statement credit on a United purchase), including two free checked bags — instead of one — and bonus miles on more spending categories.

  • Who should get it: Power users of the United MileagePlus program. Each year, you'll have to spend at least $125 with United and take two award flights to get the 5,000-mile rebates to get the most out of this card.

  • Who should skip it: Most semi-frequent United flyers are probably better off with the United℠ Explorer Card so they have extra room in their budget to fly other airlines and collect other types of airline miles or credit card points. People who want a mid-tier airline credit card might also consider the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card, which comes with a companion fare benefit that can be worth a lot more than the United Quest℠ Card's $125 statement credit.

Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa Signature®  Credit Card
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Buy one ticket, get one for just the taxes and fees ($0 fare plus taxes and fees from $22) and receive 40,000 bonus miles with this offer. To qualify, make $3,000 or more in purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account.

  • Annual fee: $75.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $440. NerdWallet values Alaska miles at 1.1 cents each.

  • Why you should get it: The special offer of a buy one, get one free ticket can more than make up for the annual fee. Not to mention, this card comes with an annual companion pass benefit that can be especially lucrative if you're using it to fly cross-country or to Hawaii.

  • Who should get it: West Coast-based travelers who can take advantage of the route network and the sweet spots in the Alaska award chart.

  • Who should skip it: People who don't live near an Alaska hub, which would make it hard to use the miles. Several other airline cards offers a similar companion pass as a benefit, so you can definitely find alternatives with other airlines if Alaska isn't convenient for you.

Alaska Airlines Visa® Business card

Alaska Airlines Visa® Business card
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Get 70,000 bonus miles plus Alaska's Famous Companion Fare™ from $121 ($99 fare plus taxes and fees from $22) with this offer. To qualify, make $4,000 or more in purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account.

  • Annual fee: $50 for the company and $25 per card.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $770. NerdWallet values Alaska miles at 1.1 cents each.

  • Why you should get it: This offer is 30,000 points more than the previous offer, and an airline credit card with a bonus of more than $700 is generally a good pick compared to the standard offers.

  • Who should get it: Again, West Coast-based business owners will probably make the most out of this one. It's particularly good for people who fly regularly from places like Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle or Anchorage.

  • Who should skip it: If you won't get much use out of the Companion Pass or you want points that can be spent on more airlines, you should look at other small business cards that might fit your needs.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
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Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel.

  • Annual fee: $95.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $750 - $1,350. Capital One miles can be redeemed for 1 cent each in the Capital One Travel portal, but NerdWallet values Capital One miles at 1.8 cents each if you take advantage of transfer partners.

  • Why you should get it: The welcome offer is 15,000 miles higher than before and now matches the offer on the more expensive Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card. If you're just trying to collect Capital One miles, this is a much cheaper entry point.

  • Who should get it: Beginner travel credit card users, or really anyone who doesn't want to keep track of a lot of bonus categories and statement credits. This card gets an excellent 2x on all spending, and 5x on hotels and rental cars booked through the Capital One Travel portal. More advanced travel credit cardholders will love the access to transfer partners like Turkish Airlines and Finnair, which aren't available through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or American Express Membership Rewards.

  • Who should skip it: If you want a lot of lounge access, it's worth spending the extra $300 on the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card, which can be offset by the $300 back in statement credits annually toward bookings made through Capital One Travel. While this card comes with two complimentary visits to Capital One lounges or more than 100 Plaza Premium lounges per year, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card's lounge access extends further to unlimited visits to those same lounges plus Priority Pass lounges and select Virgin Atlantic Clubhouses. Also, Capital One has limited options if you're trying to transfer your points to hotel programs, so people earning points for award stays might have more options with a different travel or hotel card.

Citibank ThankYou Premier Credit Card
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  • Annual fee: $95.

  • Value of welcome bonus offer: $800 - $1,200. Capital One miles can be redeemed for 1 cent each when booking travel directly, but NerdWallet values Citi ThankYou points at 1.5 cents each if you take advantage of transfer partners.

  • Why you should get it: This welcome offer is 20,000 points more than the previous offer — and with the same minimum spending requirement to earn the offer. Since the Citi Prestige® Card is no longer taking new applications, the Citi Premier® Card is one of the few options if you'd like to start collecting Citi ThankYou points.

  • Who should get it: Travel rewards enthusiasts who want access to some of the best transfer partners around. Citi is one of the only transferrable currencies to partner with Turkish Airlines' Miles&Smiles program, which has some great sweet spots in the U.S. and beyond.

  • Who should skip it: If you're more of a travel rewards beginner that'll mostly book travel in the travel portal, you'll get more value out of the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, which earns points that worth more when booking through the travel portal (about 1.25 cents each). The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card earns bonus points on more purchases, too, because it has a wider definition of travel.

To view rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, see this page. To view rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, see this page.

The information related to Citi Prestige® Card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product or service.


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 2022, including those best for:

partner programs

IHG® One Rewards
Get exclusive benefits and earn points faster
World of Hyatt
Enjoy free nights, member rates and more
Alaska Mileage Plan
Join Mileage Plan and Save $25 on your next flight
IHG® Rewards Program

IHG® One Rewards

Wherever you go, however you stay, IHG One Rewards offers rewards for every one.

on IHG One Rewards’ website

Highlights:
  1. Cheers to new tiers: New tiers allow members to earn points faster.
  2. Piling on the perks: New members benefits that enhance every stay
  3. Milestone Rewards: Allows members to choose their rewards.
  1. Cheers to new tiers: New tiers allow members to earn points faster.
  2. Piling on the perks: New members benefits that enhance every stay
  3. Milestone Rewards: Allows members to choose their rewards.

on IHG One Rewards’ website

World of Hyatt

World of Hyatt

With the World of Hyatt loyalty program, enjoy a world of rewards designed to revolve around you.

on Hyatt's website

Highlights:
  1. Earn points for things you already enjoy with Hyatt
  2. Use your points for free nights at more than 1,100 hotels around the world
  3. Three elite tiers to unlock exceptional benefits - room upgrades and more.
  1. Earn points for things you already enjoy with Hyatt
  2. Use your points for free nights at more than 1,100 hotels around the world
  3. Three elite tiers to unlock exceptional benefits - room upgrades and more.

on Hyatt's website

logo image

Alaska Mileage Plan

Mileage Plan is Alaska's loyalty program for anyone who loves to travel and is free to join!

on Alaska's website

Highlights:
  1. Join Mileage Plan and Save $25 on your next flight
  2. Our members earn 30% more miles on average than other airlines
  3. You earn based on how far you fly, not how much you spend
  1. Join Mileage Plan and Save $25 on your next flight
  2. Our members earn 30% more miles on average than other airlines
  3. You earn based on how far you fly, not how much you spend

on Alaska's website

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