The best Amex travel card depends on your preferred type of travel, but the top contenders are the American Express Platinum card, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, the Hilton Honors Aspire Credit Card and the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card. Each one shines in a particular rewards category. For example, the Hilton Honors Aspire card offers free hotel nights, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express will save you money on gas, and the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is the way to go for airline miles. And for a good overall travel card, your best bet is the American Express Platinum card. You get a 100,000 point bonus for spending $6,000 in your first 6 months, access to 1,000+ airport lounges, and 5 points per $1 spent on flights and hotels.
But before you make your decision, you’ll want to read up on each card in more detail.
Overall: The Platinum Card® from American Express
100,000 points for making $6,000 in purchases during your first 6 months. $200 Uber credit and $200 airline fee credit annually. 5 points per $1 for flights and hotels booked through the Amex travel website or directly with airlines. Access to 1,000 global lounges with a Priority Pass membership worth $429 per year. Good credit needed. $695 annual fee. 0% foreign transaction fee.
Gas Rewards: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
$300 statement credit for spending $3,000 in the first 6 months. 6% back on $6,000 spent at supermarkets per year. 3% cash back at gas stations and transit. 1% back everywhere else. Good credit needed. Annual fee of $0 intro 1st yr, $95 after. 2.7% foreign transaction fee.
Hotel Points: Hilton Honors Aspire Credit Card
150,000 points for spending $4,000 within the first 3 months. 14 points / $1 at Hilton hotels. 7 points / $1 on flights, and 3 points / $1 on all other purchases. Good credit needed. $450 annual fee. 0% foreign transaction fee.
Airline Miles: Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
80,000 miles and 20,000 Medallion Qualification Miles for spending $5,000 in the first 3 months (limited-time offer, ending 11/10/2021). Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQMs) earn you status in Delta’s tiered loyalty program. 3 miles / $1 on Delta purchases, 1 mile / $1 everywhere else. Domestic round-trip companion certificate every year on your anniversary. Good credit needed. $550 annual fee. 0% foreign transaction fee.
There are several good options for an Amex travel credit card. But it’s worth noting that Amex cards don’t have the high global acceptance rates of Visa and Mastercard credit cards, so you could run into trouble if it’s your only travel option. And if you’re interested in non-Amex alternatives, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers a 60,000 mile initial bonus, and 2 miles / $1 on every purchase for an annual fee of only $95.