Are you a frequent traveler?

How is your experience with different hotels stay?

I am sure you will say that it varies from hotel to hotel.

But what if I tell you how great it would be if you stay in the same hotel on your every trip.

Excited, right?

Everyone wants to feel comfortable when they are away from home.

For frequent travelers, hotels become the second home.

In such cases, won’t that be great if you get to stay in the same hotel with great comfort?

How about getting a loyalty card from the hotel?

Some hotels do provide hotel credit cards to their loyal customers.

It is just like a credit card with reward points etc.

In this article, I will tell you what hotel credit card is and eight pros and cons of hotel credit cards.

What are Hotel Credit Cards?

Just like a regular bank credit card, hotel credit cards are also used to make payments when you stay at a hotel. Just the difference is that most of the hotel credit cards are co-branded cards. For instance, a card issued by a bank i.e. Chase or American Express is partnered with a hotel brand. In this way, when you use this specific credit card to make your payment at the hotel, you will get a discount or rewards. The benefits can vary from free nights to room upgrades etc.

But just like other bank credit cards, you should only get a hotel credit card if you are a frequent traveler and prefer to stay in the same hotel every time. This is because like all credit cards, hotel credit cards also have their pros and cons.

Top 3 Best Hotel Credit Cards

  1. Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card
  • Annual fee – $95
  • Regular APR – 15.74% – 24.74%
  • Introductory bonus – 125, 000 points
  • 3x – 12x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for different purchases at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations.
  1. Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card
  • Annual fee – $95
  • Regular APR – 15.99% – 22.99%
  • Introductory bonus – 100, 000 points
  • 2x – 6x Bonvoy Points for different purchases.
  • Free night stays annually and automatic Silver Elite status every year just for having the card.
  1. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
  • Annual fee – $95
  • Regular APR – 15.99% – 22.99%
  • Introductory bonus – 60, 000 points
  • 2x points on travel and dining at restaurants and 1x on every dollar spent on all other purchases.

Pros of Hotel Credit Cards

1.   Reward points

Whenever you use your hotel credit card to make purchases during your stay i.e. paying for drinks or leisure activities, you are rewarded points. These points are added to the points you gained when you paid for booking your hotel room in advance.

2.   Free nights

Some hotel credit cards also offer free nights once you reach a certain number of reward points. You can redeem the earned points for a free hotel stay later on. In some hotels reward programs, when you sign up or renew your card, you also get free nights.

3.   Elite Status Benefit

Hotel credit cards can even take you to ‘elite qualifying nights’ status. This will let you go up the ladder of status for their loyalty programs. You will move to elite status and the benefits also improve. In some cases, even if you don’t use the hotel credit card regularly you might still be eligible for elite status and will be notified for it.

4.   Hotel Perks

Some top-notch hotel brands offer perks attached to their hotel credit cards that are beyond the hotel stay. The perks may include airline credits, airport lounge access, annual resort credits, etc. So if you are a holder of such a top-notch hotel brand then you may even enjoy other benefits too.

Cons of Hotel Credit Card

With so many benefits of having a hotel credit card, comes with some drawbacks too.

1.   Lack of points redemption flexibility

One of the common drawbacks of hotel credit cards is the inflexibility of point’s redemption. You can only redeem points for specific things and mostly for the services under the same hotel brand. On the other hand, some general travel credit card offers more options for the redemption of points. In some cases, the redemption rate is also very poor. There should be more options like different types of travel, gift cards, statement credits, merchandise, airline credits, etc.

2.   Annual fees

Even if you feel that you have been rewarded well for your loyalty to the brand, a hotel credit card comes with heavy baggage i.e. annual fees. Annual fees are high for hotel credit cards. They are mostly not even waived for the first year of use which is normal for most of the bank credit cards.

3.   Limited award availability

Another common problem with hotel credit cards is that at times the points cannot be redeemed when there is the peak season of the hotel. This happens because the award availability is limited during such season. As understood that hotel wants to earn more so they won’t appreciate giving discounted rooms etc. Also, when you travel alone mostly, you are given a room that accommodates one or two persons. But if you are traveling with family and want to stay in the same hotel then these points redemption for upgraded room gets difficult too.

4.   Inflexible rules

To get the most out of these hotel credit cards you need to use them within a certain period else you lose your earned points or benefits. For instance, you may be asked to use your annual resort credits during a card member year else you will lose it because it cannot be rolled over. Also, with free nights that hotel offers, there are certain rules like when they can be used or on which type of hotel you can redeem them for.

 

So, if you are a frequent traveler and 100% sure to use the hotel credit card then only sign up for it. In that way, you will be more likely to enjoy the rewards too. To look out the best offers of hotel loyalty programs as well as hotel credit card programs you can check Suites and Lobbies. They review different hotels, hotel credit cards, airline credits, etc. So, do give them a try and get your hands on the best hotel credit card.