[Update: Some offers mentioned below have expired. You can view the current offers from our partners here — American Express Platinum, Barclaycard Arrival Plus, Chase Sapphire Preferred, Citi Prestige and Capital One Quicksilver. Disclosure: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]
How worn is your passport? If it’s starting to look a little dog-eared, then you are probably a seasoned world traveler. Next to your passport, some of the most important things you carry abroad are your credit cards. The right card can help make your travels smoother and more enjoyable by offering you perks with airlines and hotels, along with travel assistance and insurance when things go wrong. In addition, the best cards to take outside of the United States should have no foreign transaction fees. And while some of these cards for world travelers can have pricey annual fees, not all of them do.
So here are six cards that have all the features and benefits to appeal to true international jet setters:
1. Bank of America Travel Rewards. Just because you travel around the world, it doesn’t mean that you are willing to spend money on annual fees. Here is one of the rare travel rewards cards that has no annual fees and is equipped with an EMV smart chip to ensure compatibility with the next generation of credit card terminals already in use around the world. In addition, cardholders earn 1.5 points per dollar spent on purchases, and points are worth about a penny each when redeemed to pay for flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars or baggage fees. In addition, customers who have a Bank of America checking or savings account earn a 10% points bonus.
2. American Express Platinum. This premium rewards card is specifically targeted at international travelers. Cardholders receive a membership to the Delta Airlines SkyClub lounges, as well as the Priority Pass Select airport lounge network. Customers also receive a $200 annual airline fee credit, and a one-time credit of $100 toward the application fee for the Global Entry program, operated by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol. Cardholders also earn Membership Rewards points which can be transferred to the frequent flier programs of airlines around the world. Finally, this card comes loaded with a travel insurance policy and a concierge service that can help you out in almost any situation. There is a $450 annual fee for his card.
3. Barclaycard Arrival Plus. This card offers double miles on all purchases and each mile is worth 1 cent as statement credit toward travel expenses such as airfare, car rentals, hotels and cruises. In addition, cardholders receive a 10% rebate on miles redeemed. This card has no foreign transaction fees, and it features an EMV smart chip with true chip-and-PIN compatibility, while most other chip-equipped cards issued in the United States only support chip-and-signature transactions. There is an $89 annual fee for this card that is waived the first year.
4. Chase Sapphire Preferred. This card offers double points on all travel and dining expenses, which can really add up for the typical world traveler. Points are earned in Chase’s Ultimate Rewards program, which offers transfers of points to airline and hotel programs. Chase also offers robust travel insurance and travel assistance policies. There is a $95 annual fee for this card that is waived the first year.
5. Citi Prestige. Cardholders now earn triple points on airfare and hotels, and double points on dining and entertainment charges. Points are earned in Citi’s ThankYou Rewards program which can be redeemed for 1.6 cents each toward flights with American or US Airways, and 1.33 cents toward flights with any other carrier. In addition, points can be transferred to miles with several different airline programs. Finally, cardholders receive a $250 annual air travel credit and a $100 credit toward the application fee for the Global Entry program. There is a $450 annual fee for his card, and no foreign transaction fees.
6. Capital One Quicksilver. Capital One has long been a favorite of world travelers. Its Quicksilver card offers 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no annual fee. And recently Capital One announced a 20% statement credit every time cardholders use Uber and charge it to the card, which is fast becoming the transportation option of choice at cities around the world. New Uber accountholders also have the opportunity to have their first two rides free (up to $30 per ride).
When you’re looking for a credit card, consider what your needs are and whether the card you choose to apply for will be a good match. Also, it’s a good idea to check your credit score before you apply to make sure you meet the credit issuer’s credit score requirement so that you apply for a card you’re more likely to get approved for. You can see two of your credit scores for free on Credit.com, and they’re updated every month.
Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.
At publishing time, the American Express Platinum, Barclaycard Arrival Plus, Chase Sapphire Preferred, Citi Prestige and Capital One Quicksilver cards are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com will be compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for any of these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.
More on Credit Cards:
- How to Lower Your Credit Card Interest Rates
- 6 Smart Credit Card Strategies
- Tips for Paying Off Credit Card Debt