The most important thing to evaluate when shopping around for a travel rewards credit card is the quality of the rewards program, particularly when compared to other similar cards. The best travel rewards cards offer much more than the typical one cent per point conversion rate. It’s also important to look at the pricing in the form of interest rate. Paying interest should be avoided, but if you need to roll over a balance, it’s good to know you can do so with a reasonable APR. Last but not least, paying an annual fee is rarely justified, unless the rewards you receive are valued well above the fee and you make use of them every year. The Pentagon Federal Credit Union had these things in mind when they created the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card.
New cardholders can earn 20,000 bonus points after making $2,500 in purchases during the first three months of opening the card. That amount translates to $200 toward your next round trip airline ticket, so already, the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card is worth the application. You can earn rewards in the following amounts with this card.
- Five points per dollar spent on airfare purchases.
- One point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
The earning rate of five points per dollar is the best you’ll find today. Cardholders also receive one point for every other dollar spent, that is standard for other travel rewards credit cards on the market today.
The card offers a 9.99% introductory variable APR on purchases, and this purchase rate is caped through June 30, 2014. After that, your APR will vary with the market based on the Prime Rate. With the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express Card if you default on your payments the fixed penalty APR is 17.99%, the lowest of any credit card we’ve ever reviewed.
The PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card includes a variety of perks including complimentary 24-hour concierge service, and two complimentary Lounge Club visits at airports around the world upon spending $15,000 on the Card in a calendar year. This card carries no annual fee. Own it, pay your balance off in full, never pay a penny.
To own this card, you must be a member of the Pentagon Federal Credit Union, which is accomplished by being associated with the military, directly or indirectly, or by making a $15 or $20 one-time donation.
Anyone who travels frequently could benefit from owning the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express Card. The 20,000 bonus points and excellent rewards program is perfect for those who live away from home and might even be right for the occasional vacationer.
Updated May 11, 2013 and originally published February 17, 2011. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @flexo on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.