Best Premium Credit Card

How we picked the cards to evaluate:

NerdWallet reviewed more than 90 rewards credit cards. We defined premium credit cards as those with annual fees of $250 or more. The cards we reviewed include products from NerdWallet partners and nonpartners.

How we chose the winner:

When choosing our best premium card, we looked at the value delivered in exchange for the high annual fee. We took into account rewards earning rates, how much spending was eligible for elevated rewards (in excess of 1%), automatic credits against spending, sign-up bonuses, loyalty bonuses, redemption options (including point-transfer partners), and cardholder perks, such as airport lounge access or elite status in travel loyalty programs.
Cards' NerdWallet star ratings alone do not determine awards. Here's how our credit cards team distinguishes between star ratings and award selections:
  • Star ratings are quantitative: We assess the features of a card, score those features according to how they compare with other options on the market, and assign the card a rating of 1 to 5 stars based on those features. In general, a card that rates 4.5 stars will be a better value for more people than a card that rates 4.0 stars. However, the 4.0 card might be better than the 4.5 card for an individual consumer depending on that person’s circumstances.
  • Selection for awards is both quantitative and qualitative: Selection for the awards is based on discussion among editorial team members and relies on the same criteria used for the star ratings. However, star ratings alone do not dictate awards. Rather, the awards identify the best cards for specific uses or specific types of consumers, such as high-end travelers.

How we verified our data:

NerdWallet gets credit card information from partner issuers through automated data feeds. Information about cards from nonpartner issuers is verified on the issuers’ websites.