I’m always on the lookout for new travel hacking opportunities. Even though I don’t need to earn as many miles and points as I used to, it’s still fun.
This year I’ll be flying in The Apartment at 30,000 feet.
I’ll be going back to my favorite country, Australia.
I’ll be heading out on a 30-city book tour. (You can come, too.)
… and I’m sure there will be many other adventures along the way.
For all of these experiences and more, I’ll be using the same credit card.
Way back in the day, I had more than 20 active cards. Yes, really—and my credit score is 750+. It’s largely a myth that more accounts damages your credit score, as long as you pay off the balances and continue to live responsibly.
These days, life is simpler. I still have a bunch of different cards, especially for various business expenses, but almost all of my personal travel goes straight to my Chase Sapphire Preferred, and I’m something of an evangelist for it.
Despite many other changes happening in the travel hacking world, there’s no better single offer. If you can only get one card, this is the first one to look at.
So, Why Is This Card So Great? Here Are a Few Reasons
- You’ll earn
40,000currently 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months
- You can also earn an extra 5,000 points when you add an authorized user within the first 3 months and they make a purchase of any amount (there’s no charge to add an authorized user, and no minimum spend to earn the additional bonus)
- Ultimate Rewards points transfer (usually on a 1:1 basis) to nearly a dozen travel partners, including United, Hyatt, Marriott, British Airways, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, and Southwest Airlines
- You’ll earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants & one point per dollar spent on all other purchases (very helpful the next time you visit 12 restaurants in one day)
- There are no foreign transaction fees (that’s why this is my primary card for travel)
- The annual fee of $95 is waived for the first year (and if you want, you can cancel before it shows up in year two—though for many of us the card is well worth keeping)
Again, there are other good cards. But people often ask me for a single recommendation, and unless you have a compelling reason why something else would be better, this is a great first start.
- What can you do with 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points?
- The Single Best Credit Card for Travelers
- Riding the Rails for 18 Hours on Amtrak