[Update: Some offers mentioned below have expired. You can view the current offers from our partners if available here — American Express Platinum and Starwood Preferred Guest. Disclosure: Cards from our partners are mentioned below.]
Do you enjoy going to special events? Unfortunately, it’s become increasingly difficult to obtain tickets to the most popular sports and entertainment extravaganzas, and there’s many other experiences that never offer passes to the general public. Some credit cards, however, can offer you access to these events, including VIP experiences that can provide a glimpse “behind the velvet rope.”
Of course, you’ll need to read the terms and conditions carefully of any plastic you are considering to find the credit card that’s right for you. And you’ll also want to check your credit before applying. A good credit score helps you qualify for the better products on the market and you’ll want to be sure your credit score can handle a hard inquiry. (You can see where you currently stand by viewing your two free credit scores, updated each month, on Credit.com.)
Having said that, here are some credit cards and a few credit card rewards programs available with many cards that you can use to gain greater access to your favorite events.
1. The NFL Extra Points Card From Barclaycard
The NFL Extra Points Card from Barclaycard offers points that can be redeemed for tickets to NFL games or exclusive football experiences. Tickets are available to regular season games, the playoffs and even the Super Bowl. You can also redeem your points to attend experiences that are not sold to the public, such as a sideline pass for pre-game warm-ups, a chance to see your team emerge from the locker room or a post-game press conference. Cardholders choose a team before applying and the exclusive experiences can vary based on what that team offers. There is no annual fee for this card; it has a variable annual percentage rate of 15.24%, 20.24% or 25.24%, depending on your creditworthiness.
2. The Platinum Card From American Express
One of the numerous benefits of American Express’ Platinum Card (see full review here) is its By Invitation Only program that gives cardholders access to extraordinary experiences including sports, fashion shows, fine dining and performing arts events. These experiences are customized for Platinum Card Members and are typically not available to the general public. This card also offers preferred seating to popular concerts, sports and entertainment events. There is a $550 annual fee for this card.
3. The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card From American Express
The Starwood Preferred Guest credit card (see full review here) allows you to earn points in the Starwood Preferred Guest program which features SPG Moments, a chance to redeem points for exclusive access to music, sports and entertainment events. For example, packages that have been available include your own private luxury suite at Wrigley Field in Chicago, a luxury suite at Madison Square Garden to see comedian Amy Schumer and an event where you can meet Jennifer Lopez and enjoy VIP seats to her show in Las Vegas. There is a $95 annual fee for this card, waived the first year. Its APR is between 15.49% to 19.49% variable, depending on your creditworthiness.
4. Citi Private Pass
This benefit is offered to Citi credit card and debit card holders, and features special access to live music, sports, dining, and family entertainment events. For example, events have included pre-sale concert tickets to see country music star Toby Keith, VIP and preferred pricing to a youth football camp with Super Bowl 50 MVP Von Miller of the Denver Broncos and an event featuring Cameron Diaz and Rachael Ray. (Full Disclosure: Citibank, American Express and Barclaycard advertise on Credit.com, but that results in no preferential editorial treatment.)
5. MasterCard Priceless Cities
Credit cardholders that are part of the MasterCard network can sign up for its Priceless Cities program, which features exclusive access to special events in some major cities. Offers have included a private Monument Park Tour at Yankee Stadium in New York and a behind-the-scenes tour of the Warner Bros. studios in Los Angeles.
6. Visa Signature
Credit card users who hold a Visa Signature card have access to exclusive events. For instance, events have included a free round of golf at Pebble Beach Golf Links with a two-night minimum stay at The Lodge, The Inn or Casa Palmero. In addition, preferred seats have been available to Cirque du Soleil shows.
At publishing time, the NFL Extra Points, American Express Platinum, Starwood Preferred Guest and Citibank credit cards are offered through Credit.com product pages, and Credit.com is compensated if our users apply and ultimately sign up for these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.
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.
Image: Digital Vision