At IHG brand hotels and resorts booked directly; otherwise earn 2X.
The IHG Rewards Traveler Credit Card is IHG’s no-annual-fee credit card. As such, it doesn’t offer the excellent perks that come with the IHG Premier Credit Card — like a free night each account anniversary, automatic Platinum Elite status, and other travel perks.
However, the IHG Traveler Card still offers surprisingly good benefits for a no-annual-fee card. You’ll get IHG Rewards’ intro level Silver Elite status, fourth night free on rewards stays, and a 20% discount on purchases of IHG Rewards points.
Silver Elite status doesn’t offer too many perks — 20% bonus points at IHG hotels and resorts, a shot at late checkout, and not having to worry about point expiration. Cardholders can spend $20,000 in a calendar year to upgrade to Gold Elite status. Gold Elite status includes 40% bonus points at IHG hotels and resorts.
In addition to the sign-up bonus, IHG Rewards Traveler Credit Card cardholders will earn bonus points on IHG hotel stays, dining, gas stations, select streaming services, and utility monthly bills. Cardholders earn 2 points per dollar spent on all other eligible purchases. Considering the IHG Rewards point value is only around 0.4 cents per point, that’s not the best possible return on your other purchases.
So, you might just want to limit using your IHG Traveler Card to IHG hotels and resorts. By charging IHG hotel stays to their IHG Traveler Card, cardholders will earn a total of at least 17 points per dollar spent:
For those unfamiliar, the IHG Rewards loyalty program includes a wide range of hotel brands. On the luxury side, you can earn and redeem IHG points at InterContinental Hotels, Kimpton, Hotel Indigo, Six Senses, and Regent Hotels. On the flip side, you can earn and redeem IHG points for stays at Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Club Vacations, Candlewood Suites, and Staybridge Suites. That range of earning and redemption options is truly impressive.
At Hyatt family hotels booked directly with Hyatt only; Otherwise earn 1X
For World of Hyatt fans, the World of Hyatt Credit Card is easily worth its $99 annual fee. Just the annual free night earned on each cardmember anniversary can provide that much value. Plus, cardholders will get automatic Discoverist World of Hyatt elite status with the ability to earn even higher elite status levels by spending on the card.
Not surprisingly, the Hyatt Credit Card offers bonus points on Hyatt stays. Cardholders earn 4X bonus points on Hyatt stays. Add in the 5X base points you earn as a World of Hyatt member and 10% elite status bonus points from Hyatt Discoverist status, and cardholders earn at least 9.5x World of Hyatt points per dollar spent at Hyatt properties.
Bonus points aren’t just limited to your Hyatt purchases. World of Hyatt Credit Card holders earn 2 Hyatt bonus points per dollar spent in the following categories: local transit and commuting; dining out at restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops; flights purchased directly from the airline; and fitness club and gym memberships. All other eligible purchases earn 1x Hyatt points.
Although Discoverist elite status is the bottom tier in the World of Hyatt program, it still offers valuable benefits like waived resort fees on free night awards, premium internet, preferred room upgrade, 2 pm late checkout, and bonus points when flying American Airlines.
But you don’t have to be content with Discoverist tier status. You can use the World of Hyatt Credit Card to earn even higher elite status in the World of Hyatt program. Each calendar year, World of Hyatt Credit Card cardholders will start with five qualifying night credits. Then you’ll earn two qualifying night credits for every $5,000 in purchases every calendar year.
Another reason to spend on the World of Hyatt Credit Card is to earn free night awards. Like many co-branded hotel cards, cardholders get one free night certificate every cardmember anniversary. However, World of Hyatt Credit Card account holders can also earn an extra free night certificate by spending $15,000 in a calendar year.
That means cardholders will get a total of two free nights and 11 qualifying night credits each year they spend $15,000 on the World of Hyatt Credit Card. That puts you more than one-third of the way to World of Hyatt Explorist status.
These free nights can are limited to Category 1-4 Hyatt properties. While that’s somewhat limiting, you still have plenty of options for redeeming your Hyatt free nights. For example, you can redeem your free night certificates at the Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay — a waterside Category 3 hotel that averages $266 per night.
World of Hyatt Credit Card holders are protected when traveling with extensive travel protections like trip delay reimbursement, lost luggage reimbursement, baggage delay insurance, and travel accident insurance. Plus, the World of Hyatt Credit Card doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees.
Plus, you’ll get benefits from several partners. Get up to $10 in statement credits each month toward GoPuff purchases through December 2023. Plus, get lower service fees when you use DoorDash by enrolling to get one complimentary year of DashPass through December 2024.