Applies only to Southwest Airlines booked directly with Southwest; Otherwise earn 1X
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The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card should be the go-to card for Southwest frequent travelers that own a small business. Don’t let the $199 annual fee scare you off. This card comes packed with perks that can easily justify that fee.
Southwest-specific perks include four Upgraded Boardings each year, virtually unlimited inflight WiFi passes, and the ability to spend toward A-List status. Plus cardholders get premium travel perks like a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee statement credit.
Cardholders earn 4x Rapid Rewards points on Southwest Airlines purchases. That’s a higher rewards earning rate on Southwest purchases than you’ll find on any other Southwest credit card. Plus you’ll earn 3x points on Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partners.
However, this card doesn’t just reward travel purchases. Cardholders earn 2x Southwest Rapid Rewards points on a wide range of purchases, including social media and search engine advertising; internet, cable, and phone services; transit and commuting, including ride-hailing services. Earn points on all other purchases at a rate of 1 Rapid Rewards point per dollar spent.
Cardholders will earn 1,500 tier qualifying points toward A-List status for every $10,000 spent on purchases annually. While you probably don’t want to put that much spending on the card, you can conceivably spend all the way to A-List Preferred status by spending $470,000 on the card in a calendar year.
The only real downside to this card is the limited redemption options. The best way to redeem Rapid Rewards points is for Southwest flights. And since the Rapid Rewards structure is a fixed-value program, you won’t get more value from some flights than others. The good news is that means there are no blackout dates when you want to redeem points.
You can add employee cards for no additional cost, meaning you can be rewarded for employee spending. The card also offers up to a $500 statement credit for points transfers. That means you can transfer points to employees without additional cost.
Lastly, this card is great for getting more than halfway to a Southwest Companion Pass with the bonus offer. Read our guide on earning a Southwest Companion Pass for up to two years via new account bonuses.
Applies to bookings at Hilton Honors properties booked directly with Hilton. Otherwise, earn 3X
At U.S. Gas Stations
At U.S. Restaurants. Take out and delivery included.
At U.S. Supermarkets. * American Express defines a supermarket as offering a wide variety of food and household products such as meat, fresh produce, dairy, canned and packaged goods, household cleaners, pharmacy products and pet supplies. (Superstores, convenience stores and warehouse clubs are NOT considered supermarkets.)
The Hilton Honors American Express Card is the entry level Hilton card in a family of three Hilton credit cards for individuals including this one, the Hilton Honors Surpass® Credit Card ($150 annual fee), and the Hilton Aspire® credit card ($550 annual fee).
(All information about the Hilton Honors Aspire® Credit Card ahas been collected independently by Your Best Credit Cards.)
If you stay with Hilton frequently and simply aren’t willing to pay an annual fee, this isn’t a bad card. With 7X earned at Hilton portfolio properties (we value that at 3.5% worth of points back since we value Hilton points at 0.5 cents each), you’ll certainly do well when you pay with this card at Hilton family hotels and resorts.
5X Hilton Honors points at US restaurants, US gas stations, and US supermarkets on a no-annual fee card isn’t bad either, with a 2.5% effective return on spend assuming a value of 0.5 cents per Hilton point).
However, if you do step up to the annual fee cards, you do get more. The Surpass comes with automatic Hilton Gold status instead of Hilton Honors Silver status, which adds a breakfast or meal voucher credit to your benefits along with room upgrades and gives you the opportunity to earn a Free Night Reward valid on any Standard Night Reward after $15,000 in spend.
And the Aspire, despite its heft annual fee, provides come crazy benefits like Diamond elite status.
However, you are probably reading about this card because you want a no annual fee Hilton credit card and this one is pretty strong for a new annual fee hotel card. Not to mention the shopping protections like Extended Warranty and Purchase Protection as well as no foreign transaction fees.
Rates and Fees for the Hilton Honors Credit Card from American Express