I love to travel. It’s so much fun to see new destinations and experience different cultures with someone you care about. We were married for over 12 years before we had a kid and that gave us a lot of time to travel. Well, we only had 3 weeks of vacation per year, but we made the best of it. I have been to over 20 countries and enjoyed all the memorable moments in each location. We haven’t traveled much since we had a baby, but now he is old enough to fly so I’m itching to travel once again.
However, I don’t have a well compensated full time job anymore and it can be difficult to splurge on an international trip. Luckily, I learned about travel reward cards over the last few years and we should now be able to travel without busting our budget. If you like to travel, then it pays to take advantage of the generous signup bonuses from various credit card companies. (If you have a lot of consumer debt, then you should take care of that first before even thinking about spending money on travel.)
One of the best travel cards out there is the Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard. It’s named “Best Travel Reward” card by Money Magazine and you’ll see why.
Generous Signup Bonus
The Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard has one of the most generous signup bonuses right now. Once you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months, you’ll receive 40,000 miles credited to your account. This can be redeemed for $400 worth of travel related expenses charged on the card. This is a huge bonus and it will reduce your travel costs by quite a bit.
Extra 10% Bonus On All Redemption
Actually, that 40,000 bonus miles is worth $440. When you redeem the miles, you will get 10% back as a bonus in 1-2 weeks. That means you’ll have 4,000 miles once you redeem the original 40,000 bonus miles. That’s another $40 toward your travel for a total of $440 bonus. Score!
Easy Redemption Process
In my experience, bonus miles can be difficult to redeem. You have to deal with blackout dates and limited number of airline partners. The Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard made the redemption process very easy and you don’t have to worry about any of that. You just charge your travel related expenses on the card and redeem your miles online. When you go to the redemption page, you’ll see all your eligible travel charges. Then you can redeem your charges for miles in increments of 2,500 ($25). Here is a list of the eligible charges.
- Travel Agencies and Tour Operators
- Airlines Tickets
- Car Rentals
- Rail Travel
You do have to redeem your travel purchases in 90 days so don’t put it off for too long
2.2% Reward With No Mileage Cap
You’ll get 2 miles for each dollar you charge on the card. That’s a 2.2% reward once you count the 10% redemption bonus. There is no mileage cap so if you use the card a lot, you can accumulate as many miles as you’d like. It’s a great value for anyone who travels.
No Foreign Transaction Fee
I always hated paying foreign transaction fees. It’s not a huge amount at around 3%, but it can definitely add up. If you spend $3,000 on a trip, you’ll pay almost $100 in foreign transaction fees.
First Year Annual Fee Waived
The card does have a $89 annual fee. This is waived for the first year so if you don’t like it, you can cancel it. They also have a no annual fee version, but you only get 1 mile back per $1 spent. I think the $89 is worth it if you travel and can take advantage of the bonus and reward.
If you really hate the $89 annual fee, then you can switch to the no annual fee version after the year is up. You get only 1 miles per $1 spent so the reward is much less.
As you can see, the Barclaycard Arrival™ Plus World Elite MasterCard is a great card for travelers. I normally avoid credit cards with annual fees, but this one is worth it.
- Earn 40,000 bonus miles when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 90 days – that’s enough to redeem for a $400 travel statement credit
- 0% intro APR for 12 months for each Balance Transfer made within 45 days of account opening. After that, a variable APR currently 14.99% or 18.99%, depending on your creditworthiness.
- Earn 2X miles on all purchases – Miles don’t expire as long as your account is open, active and in good standing
- Chip card for increased confidence and convenience to pay abroad as easily as you do at home
- Redeem your miles for travel statement credits – redemptions start at 2,500 miles for $25 toward travel purchases made in the last 120 days
- Get 10% miles back to use toward your next redemption every time you redeem for travel statement credits
- No foreign transaction fees on anything you buy while in another country
- Complimentary online FICO® Credit Score access for Barclaycard Arrival cardmembers