2016's Best Air Miles & Travel Credit Cards

Below are our picks for 2016's top travel reward cards. These cards award users air miles or other points for their purchases, which are redeemable for free flights, hotel stays and more:

Average APR
Average Annual Fee
Rate Trend
since last month

More About: Air Miles Credit Cards

5 Ways to Maximize Credit Card Airline Miles

Mike Randall
Finance Expert
5 Ways to Maximize Credit Card Airline Miles
CardRates.com Guide: Air Miles

If the idea of flying all over the world and not having to pay for it appeals to you, then you’re in luck. The opportunity to fly for little-to-no-money has never been easier or more available than it is right now.

That’s because more and more businesses are offering airline miles as rewards for using their services. With a little planning and research, you can take full advantage of the money you spend just by spending it the right way.

Look for partnership deals

Some credit card companies offer deals for purchasing subscriptions and services through businesses they partner with. These could include newspaper and magazine subscriptions, insurance company quotes and policies, hotels and car rentals agencies – you name it. If this is something you need anyway, why not earn miles for it?

Take advantage of one-time bonus miles

Many credit card companies offer substantial bonuses for spending a certain amount during the initial period of having the card. If you plan accordingly, you can take advantage of thousands of extra miles, and then pay off the charges and do it over again with a new card. It’s the fastest way to accumulate extra miles. Many of these cards even offer 0% introductory rates.

Use the right card

If you’re planning to make a major purchase such as a car, boat or even furniture or appliances, use a credit card that will take full advantage of your purchase. Some cards offer even up to three times the bonus points for major purchases made with the card.

Watch for special offers

Some credit card companies will make special offers on extra airline miles. Look these over carefully and decide if it fits in with your spending and budget plans. Some offers don’t require you to spend any extra money but simply give you extra miles for signing up an authorized user.

Look for points that don’t expire

Most of the credit card airline mile rewards points are good indefinitely. That may not be true, however, with the airline frequent flyer programs themselves. If you do plan to transfer points from a credit card reward plan to an airline frequent flyer program, be aware of mile expiration dates.

Credit card airline miles are a great way to fly for practically free. Take full advantage of all the extra bonuses and ways to earn more miles. If you regularly use your airline miles credit card for the majority of your purchases, your miles will add up faster than you think. Soon you’ll be flying high and enjoying the rewards.

Photo source: credit.com

Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Mike Randall

* Advertiser Disclosure: The credit card offers that appear on this site are from credit card companies from which CardRates.com receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). CardRates.com does not include all credit card companies or all available credit card offers. See the credit card issuer's website for specific terms and conditions of each card.