One of the quickest paths to a free ticket is through airline-affiliated credit cards. For the sole cost of an annual fee of roughly $30 to $100, you can earn miles for every purchase you make on your charge card, usually at a rate of one mile per dollar spent. Most cards also offer a hefty signup bonus and additional perks. And with SmarterTravel.com’s Mile Finder (see below), you can easily find the latest information on credit card partners for 12 airlines.
The Mile Finder outlines the many ways credit card partners can increase your mileage account and provide you with additional travel perks. The entries list the credit card signup bonuses, which usually run between 2,500 and 15,000 miles, depending on the type of card, as well as the anniversary bonuses, free companion tickets, and reduced award prices that some affiliated credit cards offer as extra incentives.
You can also find out which cards offer double miles for purchases of airline tickets or everyday expenses, such as groceries and gas for your car. With all of this information in one place, it’s easy to compare offers to choose the card that is right for you. If you need more help deciding, read the advice of expert Tim Winship in the [% 3674 | advice | Joy of Miles %] series.
And don’t worry about the annual fee. If you spend $500 a month on credit card bills for a card with a $50 annual fee, you’re getting those miles for less than one cent per mile, an excellent price. Factor in your signup bonus of 5,000 miles, and you’re paying less than half a penny per mile for the first year. You cannot purchase or transfer miles at a comparable price, so credit card offers are truly giving you good mileage value for your money.
To start your search for the airline-affiliated credit card that’s right for you, select your preferred airline or “all” and “credit card” from the Mile Finder below.