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The best hotel credit cards of 2020:
- Best travel card overall: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Best premium travel card: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- Best card for luxury hotel perks and elite status: The Platinum Card® from American Express
- Best for Hilton elite status: Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
- Best for occasional Hilton stays: Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card
- Best for IHG stays: IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card
- Best for Hyatt stays: The World Of Hyatt Credit Card
- Best for premium Marriott benefits: Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card
- Best for Wyndham stays: Wyndham Rewards Visa
- Best for Radisson stays: Radisson Rewards Premier Visa Signature card
When considering a hotel credit card, it's important to factor in your travel goals: Are you looking to stay at a five-star resort in the Maldives? Or do you want to be able to book a cheap staycation once or twice a year without paying an exorbitant annual fee?
It's also important to consider the card's welcome bonus, recurring benefits, ease of earning free nights via credit card spending, category bonuses, and elite status perks (if any). With that in mind, here are the best hotel credit cards.
If you're interested in rewards credit cards that offer travel benefits that extend beyond hotel perks, check out Business Insider's list of the best travel credit cards.
We're focused here on the rewards and perks that come with each card. These cards won't be worth it if you're paying interest or late fees. When using a credit card, it's important to pay your balance in full each month, make payments on time, and only spend what you can afford to pay.
Non-hotel brand cards to maximize rewards on hotel stays
If you're loyal to a specific hotel brand, having a co-branded card makes a lot of sense, as it can get you complimentary elite status, bonus points, and other perks when you stay with that chain.
But if you care less about brand loyalty and more about earning as many points as possible, a general travel rewards credit card like one of these could make more sense:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Chase Sapphire Reserve®
- The Platinum Card® from American Express
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve® earn bonus points on travel and dining (2x on the Preferred, 3x on the Reserve), and you can transfer your Chase points to Hyatt, IHG, and Marriott, among other partners. The Sapphire Preferred has a $95 annual fee, and the Reserve has a $550 annual fee (but comes with a $300 annual travel credit that applies to everything from Uber rides to hotel stays).
There's also the The Platinum Card® from American Express, which offers complimentary Gold status with both Hilton and Marriott. Plus, if you have the Amex Platinum you can earn 5 points per dollar on Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts stays. These are stays at luxury properties, and your reservation includes benefits like complimentary upgrades, free breakfast, and property credits. The Amex Platinum has a $550 annual fee, but it easily can be worth it thanks to benefits like this.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Good to Excellent
60,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
- High sign-up bonus starts you off with lots of points
- Strong travel coverage
- Doesn't offer a Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit or any other statement credit benefits
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