BEST CREDIT CARDSBEST CREDIT CARDSWYNDHAM REWARDS EARNER PLUS REVIEW: SOLID REWARDS AND PERKS FOR LOYALISTS

Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Review: Solid Rewards and Perks for Loyalists

It offers 6x points with Wyndham and at gas stations, 4x back on dining and grocery stores and 1x back on everything else — plus elite status. There's no outright 'free night award,' but you do earn anniversary points that can help with that.
Kimberly Palmer Author AvatarErin Hurd Author Avatar
Oct 16, 2023 9:42 p.m. PDT
Edited by
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The Bottom Line

4.4

NerdWallet rating

This $75-annual-fee card offers a lot of value, including anniversary points that could snag you a free night each year — but only at the lowest tier.

Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card Image
Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card
Annual Fee
$75
Rewards Rate
1x-6x
Points
Intro Offer
45,000
Points
Recommended credit score
Intro APR
0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers
Regular APR
20.99%, 25.24% or 29.99%, Variable APR
Recommended credit score
Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card Image
Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card
Annual Fee
$75
Rewards Rate
1x-6x
Points
Intro Offer
45,000
Points
Recommended credit score
Intro APR
0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers
Regular APR
20.99%, 25.24% or 29.99%, Variable APR
Recommended credit score
  • Annual fee

    $75

  • Rewards rate

    1x-6x

  • Bonus offer

    Earn 45,000 bonus points, enough for up to 6 free nights after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.

  • Intro APR

    0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers

  • Ongoing APR

    APR: 20.99%, 25.24% or 29.99%, Variable

    Cash Advance APR: 29.99%, Variable

  • Balance transfer fee

    Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

  • Foreign transaction fee

    0% of each transaction in U.S. dollars.

  • Earn 45,000 bonus points, enough for up to 6 free nights after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.
  • Earn 6X points on eligible purchases made at Hotels by Wyndham as well as on qualifying gas purchases.
  • Earn 4X points on eligible dining and grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®).
  • Earn 1X points on all other purchases (excluding Wyndham Vacation Club down payments).
  • Automatically receive a Wyndham Rewards PLATINUM member level and enjoy perks like early check-in, car rental upgrades, and more.
  • Receive 7,500 bonus points each anniversary year after payment of the renewal fee-that's enough for up to one free night at participating hotels every year.
  • Redeem 10% fewer Wyndham Rewards points for go free® awards, and earn your free nights faster.
  • Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card members can save even more on our Best Available Rate for stays at participating Hotels by Wyndham.
  • There is no limit to the number of points you can earn.
  • Redeem points you've earned for online shopping, discounts on gas, local tours and activities, gift cards, and so much more.

Pros and Cons

Pros

High rewards rate

New cardholder bonus offer

Anniversary perk

Transfer partners

Cons

No free anniversary night

Has annual fee

Limited redemptions

Detailed Review

If you're wedded to Wyndham, the Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card is a solid hotel credit card, earning 6 points per $1 spent at Wyndham properties. So if you frequently stay at the brand’s hotels, vacation rentals or timeshares, you can rack up points and then redeem them for free or discounted nights, transfer them to travel partners including airlines, or even purchase gift cards or merchandise, among other options.

The $75-annual-fee card, issued by Barclays, features a sign-up bonus that's significant and relatively easy to earn. Plus, it offers elite status with Wyndham, as well as anniversary points each year that can help offset that annual fee.

However, unlike a lot of other hotel credit cards with annual fees, you won't get a free overnight stay each year — at least not outright — and that's a bit of a disappointment. On the other hand, the anniversary points you get can be worth at least as much as a free night, and points are more flexible with a longer expiration.

🤓Nerdy Tip

There's a $0-annual-fee version of this card called the Wyndham Rewards Earner® Card, though its rewards and benefits are less robust.

Key features of the Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card

Card type: Hotel.

Annual fee: $75.

Sign-up bonus: Earn 45,000 bonus points, enough for up to 6 free nights after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.

Ongoing rewards:

  • 6X points per dollar spent at Wyndham hotels.

  • 6X points per dollar spent at gas stations.

  • 4X points per dollar spent on dining and grocery store purchases (except at Target and Walmart).

  • 1X point per dollar spent on all other purchases (except for Wyndham Vacation Club down payments, the hotel brand's timeshare program).

NerdWallet values Wyndham points at 1.2 cents each. This is a baseline value, drawn from real-world data, not a maximized value. In other words, you should aim for award redemptions that offer 1.2 cents or more in value from your Wyndham points.

Wyndham hotel brands include its namesake Wyndham properties, but also La Quinta, Ramada, AmericInn, Baymont, Microtel, Days Inn, Howard Johnson's, Super 8 and Travelodge.

Redemption options

You'll typically get the most value from your points by redeeming them within the Wyndham program for award nights. You have two options for this:

  • Go free: Free nights with Wyndham cost 7,500, 15,000 or 30,000 points per bedroom.

  • Go fast: A mixture of cash and points. You can get a discounted night for 1,500, 3,000 or 6,000 points per bedroom plus cash at participating properties.

Other ways to use your points:

  • Transfers to multiple partner programs, including American, United and Frontier airlines.

  • Merchandise, gift cards, charitable contributions.

  • Wyndham timeshare owners only: Redeem points for partial payment of maintenance fee, RCI Exchange Fees and more.

It's nice to have multiple redemption options, especially if you have Wyndham points to burn. But your points will typically be worth the most if you redeem them for hotel stays.

APR: 0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers made within 45 days of account opening, then the ongoing APR of 20.99%, 25.24% or 29.99%, Variable APR.

Foreign transaction fees: None.

Other benefits:

  • 7,500 anniversary points every year.

  • Automatic Wyndham Rewards Platinum membership, which comes with perks like early check-in and rental car upgrades.

🤓Nerdy Tip

The Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card is a revamped version of the older Wyndham Rewards® Visa® Card. That older version is no longer open to new applicants, as of September 2020.

Compare to Other Cards

ANNUAL FEE
$0
INTRO APR
0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
REGULAR APR
18.24%-28.24% Variable APR
RECOMMENDED CREDIT SCORE
ANNUAL FEE
$95
INTRO APR
N/A
REGULAR APR
21.49%-28.49% Variable APR
RECOMMENDED CREDIT SCORE
ANNUAL FEE
$250
INTRO APR
N/A
REGULAR APR
See Pay Over Time APR
RECOMMENDED CREDIT SCORE
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Benefits and Perks

High rewards rate

When you spend at Wyndham properties, you earn 6X points per dollar. Those rewards rates are in addition to the 10 base points per $1 you get simply as a Wyndham Rewards loyalty program member. A $350 hotel stay, for instance, would earn you a total of 5,600 points: 3,500 as a member of Wyndham rewards, on top of 2,100 from your card. What's more, you'll also earn 6X points per $1 when you fill up on gas and 4X points per $1 for spending on dining and grocery store purchases. So if you're a frequent Wyndham guest who also drives a lot and shops at grocery stores, you have plenty of opportunities to earn a lot of points.

Large sign-up bonus, plus valuable anniversary points

New cardholders get handsomely rewarded: Earn 45,000 bonus points, enough for up to 6 free nights after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.

But the rewards keep coming each year when you renew your card. You’ll earn 7,500 points automatically every anniversary, which can be good for one free night at a low-tier property. Or you can choose to put those 7,500 points toward a higher-end, 30,000-per-night resort.

Elite status

If you stay at Wyndham properties frequently, then you’ll appreciate the Platinum-level membership perks, which include early check-in, late checkout and rental car upgrades. Without the card, it takes 15 nights to reach the Platinum membership level.

Drawbacks and Considerations

Annual fee

Although this card's annual fee is lower than others in its class (which are typically closer to $100), you can find no-annual-fee travel cards with solid rewards — and one of them is this card's sibling, the Wyndham Rewards Earner® Card. It offers the same bonus categories, but at lower rates.

Here's how those two Wyndham cards stack up, along with details on the business version of the card, the Wyndham Rewards Earner Business Card:

Empty Table Header

Wyndham Rewards Earner Card

Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card

Wyndham Rewards Earner Business Card

Annual fee

$0

$75

$95

Sign-up bonus

Earn 30,000 bonus points, enough for up to 4 free nights after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.

Earn 45,000 bonus points, enough for up to 6 free nights after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.

Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 90 days and earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $15,000 on purchases within the first 12 months. Free nights can require up to 30,000 points per bedroom at participating properties and are subject to availability. Resort fees may apply and cannot be paid with points.

Rewards

  • 5X points per $1 spent on Wyndham hotel stays and on gas.

  • 2X points per $1 spent on restaurants and grocery store purchases.

  • 1X point per $1 spent on all other purchases (excluding Wyndham Vacation Club down payments).

  • 6X points per $1 spent on Wyndham hotel stays and on gas.

  • 4X points per $1 spent on restaurants and grocery store purchases.

  • 1X point per $1 spent on all other purchases (excluding Wyndham Vacation Club down payments).

  • 8X points per $1 spent on Wyndham hotel stays and on gas.

  • 5X points per $1 spent on marketing, advertising and utilities.

  • 1X point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

Anniversary bonus points

7,500 points after spending $15,000 on purchases

7,500 points (automatic, no spending required)

15,000 points (automatic, no spending required)

Automatic Wyndham status

Gold

Platinum

Diamond

Cell phone protection

None

None

Yes (must pay wireless bill with card each month)

No free night certificate

While cardholders earn 7,500 points for each anniversary with the card (enough for a free night at the lowest-tier hotels), it’s not enough for a stay at a mid-tier or higher-end property.

Other hotel cards with annual fees — such as the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card and the World of Hyatt Credit Card — offer an automatic "free night award" every year that you can apply to a wide range of properties.

Still, points do have one advantage: Unlike many free night certificates, which expire after one year, Wyndham points expire four years after you earn them (or in 18 months with no account activity).

Wyndham-specific hotel rewards

Yes, you can transfer points to travel partners, but it's a poor value. If you aren't loyal to Wyndham and would like greater flexibility, you might be better off with a general travel card that earns points you can use at any hotel or airline.

With the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, you'll earn bonus rewards on popular spending categories like travel and dining. If you choose to redeem directly via the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal, points are worth 1.25 cents each. Or, you can transfer your points to one of Chase's travel partners and potentially get even more value out of your points. The annual fee is $95.

How To Decide If It's Right For You

If you frequently stay at Wyndham properties, you could benefit from the high rewards rates this card offers on Wyndham-related spending, not to mention the perks of Wyndham Platinum membership.

But if you prefer to stay at a range of hotel brands and want to earn (and redeem) rewards beyond the Wyndham umbrella, you'll be better off with a more general travel credit card. Or, you may find that the ultimate flexibility of a cash-back credit card may suit you better. Check out NerdWallet’s list of the best credit cards to explore your options.

Alternate Pick: Flexible, versatile rewards
Better points ratio for transfer partners

The card earns bonus rewards in popular categories like travel and dining. Those points are worth 1.25 cents each if you redeem for travel directly via the Chase Ultimate Rewards® travel portal. But you can also choose to transfer points to multiple hotel and airline transfer partners, all at a 1:1 ratio. The annual fee is $95.


Methodology

NerdWallet reviews credit cards with an eye toward both the quantitative and qualitative features of a card. Quantitative features are those that boil down to dollars and cents, such as fees, interest rates, rewards (including earning rates and redemption values) and the cash value of benefits and perks. Qualitative factors are those that affect how easy or difficult it is for a typical cardholder to get good value from the card. They include such things as the ease of application, simplicity of the rewards structure, the likelihood of using certain features, and whether a card is well-suited to everyday use or is best reserved for specific purchases. Our star ratings serve as a general gauge of how each card compares with others in its class, but star ratings are intended to be just one consideration when a consumer is choosing a credit card. Learn how NerdWallet rates credit cards.

About the authors

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