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Details about the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card were last updated on 10.29.2019.

Whether you’re often on the road for business or planning your next vacation, you should be well-versed in the up-front advantages of owning a travel credit card. With travel cards, your everyday spending is rewarded with points toward booking your next flight, cruise, hotel stay as well as other travel-related perks.

There are a lot of great options out there, with issuers offering various competing rewards structures. But in order to maximize the value of your travel card, it helps to dig below the surface and tap into the deeper benefits. Let’s have a look at some of them.

Travel rewards vs. travel perks

Depending on your credit score, you may have to sacrifice the rate at which you earn your travel rewards for some of the added perks. If you have a good or even excellent credit score, you may qualify for a card that offers both top tier rewards and perks. Typically, these cards will require paying an annual fee. But there are options out there that’ll add convenience to your travel without the extra payment.

With most travel cards, you earn points on a variety of purchases and early-spending bonuses, but the added protection and luxury to your travel experience comes from the perks. Things like free checked bags, no foreign transaction fees and access to airport lounges are just the beginning.

Travel card perks

Here are ten of the most valuable travel rewards card perks:

1. Travel accident insurance

While an injury is one of the last things you want on vacation, it’s nice to know you’re protected if something were to go wrong. Fortunately, most travel cards offer travel accident insurance as a free add-on, so you’ll be covered.

2. Baggage assurance

If you travel often, you know there’s almost nothing more frustrating than losing your checked luggage. Many travel cards will pay you back for lost or damaged bags, but the amount you’re eligible to be reimbursed will depend on the card.

The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card offers a maximum reimbursement of $1,000 per trip for lost or damaged bags. However, some cards go further and offer up to $3,000 in reimbursement, per traveler, per trip.

The information about the Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.

3. Priority lounge access

Heading into a VIP airport lounge may feel like more of a luxury than a necessity, but the added bonus can relieve some of the stress while traveling. Lounges often cost hundreds per year to join, so the complimentary food, drink, Wi-Fi and more are certainly valuable perks.

Cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve (and many others) will give you access to airport lounges all over the world.

4. Car rental insurance

Rental car companies will offer insurance when you’re picking up, but for an additional cost. Luckily, complimentary rental car insurance is a common perk with travel cards, so you won’t have to worry about purchasing at the counter.

5. Concierge service

You can of course do all of your travel destination research on your own, but it’s nice to have some personal service to provide a recommendation or two while your away.. A concierge can often give you some insider info that the research sites can’t, so the added perk may make your travel experiences more memorable.

6. Roadside assistance

Much like car rental insurance or luggage reimbursement, you won’t necessarily want to have to use this perk, but you’ll be glad you have it. Car trouble could occur at any time, so it’s important to have assistance provided by cards like the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard.

7. Price protection

Featured across most travel cards, price protection allows you to be reimbursed if you make a purchase soon before the price of your item drops.

You’ll want to be sure that you purchase your travel items with your travel card to take advantage of this benefit. Credit card issuers won’t honor claims for your purchases made with another card.

8. Trip cancellation insurance

If you’ve ever had to cancel a trip, you’d know that it’s both a logistical hassle and brutal on your bank account. More often than not, flights and hotels are nonrefundable – which makes having cancellation insurance a valuable addition to your travel portfolio.

9. TSA PreCheck/Global Entry

In the U.S., TSA PreCheck and Global Entry allow travelers to get through the airport with ease, but at an added cost.

Some travel cards offer up to $100 in credit towards your application to either service, so skipping security lines will be more affordable. Next time you’re running late and worried about missing your flight, breezing through the airport to your gate will feel like more than just an added perk.

10. In-flight discounts

Your travel card may make you eligible for cheaper snacks, drinks and entertainment on flights. In-flight discounts are even more valuable when traveling with family. Just be sure that your party is charging their expenses to the same card.

Top travel cards and their top benefits

If you’re interested in a travel card and all the associated perks and rewards, take a look at three of our favorites below:

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Featured rewards:
Earn 10x miles on thousands of hotels and 2x miles on any other purchases. The best part — the miles are unlimited, don’t expire and are transferable.

Added perks:

  • Travel accident insurance
  • Car rental insurance
  • Concierge service
  • Baggage assurance
  • Price protection
  • Roadside assistance
  • TSA PreCheck/Global entry

This card is a great option for any frequent traveler. Thanks to how easy it is to stack miles with your hotel spending, this may be the card for you.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Featured rewards:
No matter where you are in the world, cardholders will earn 2x points on travel and dining and 1 point per dollar spent otherwise. The points you earn are transferable to leading hotel and airline loyalty programs, giving you an added level of flexibility.

Chase is offering 60,000 points (equivalent to $750 towards travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards) if you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from opening your account.

Added perks:

  • Travel accident insurance
  • Car rental insurance
  • Concierge service
  • Baggage assurance
  • Price protection
  • Roadside assistance
  • Trip cancellation insurance

Thanks to an easy-to-understand rewards structure, dining bonuses and great benefits, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great option for any traveler, but especially those who love to dine out.

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Featured rewards:
With this no annual fee card, you’ll earn 1.5 points per dollar spent on any purchase. Points are unlimited and don’t expire, so you can take your time accumulating points without having to worry about them disappearing.

Added perks:

  • Travel accident insurance
  • Car rental insurance
  • Baggage assurance
  • Price protection
  • Trip cancellation insurance

No annual fee and a 0% intro APR offer on purchases for the first 12 billing cycles (16.74% – 24.74% variable thereafter) make the Bank of America Travel Rewards card an affordable, great fit for any new travel card owner.

Bottom line

When weighing your options for a travel card, consider the added benefits that are most important to you. Whether you want the freedom to cancel trips, insurance coverage or VIP lounge access, there’s plenty of value to be had.