Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Robin Saks Frankel  in  0% APR Advertising Disclosure
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Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent (670 - 850)

A FICO score/credit score is used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit score alone does not guarantee or imply approval for any financial product.

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Best travel card with no annual fee

Annual Fee:
$0
Purchase Intro APR:
0% Introductory APR on purchases for 12 billing cycles
Balance Transfer Intro APR:
N/A
Regular APR:
17.24% - 25.24% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
Terms and Restrictions Apply
Bankrate Score: 85 out of 100

Commonly used for: 0% APR, Excellent Credit, No Annual Fee, No Foreign Transaction Fees, Rewards, Travel.

The Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card includes some intriguing perks available to cardholders who have a banking relationship with Bank of America, but those extra goodies aren’t enough to make this a first-tier travel rewards credit card.

On the other hand, this is a good pick for any travel fan who wants to earn points, but doesn’t want to pay for the privilege.

Review

The Travel Rewards card (formerly the BankAmericard Travel Rewards Credit Card) comes with no annual fee, which makes its only decent rewards program look a bit better. You’ll earn 1.5 points for every dollar you spend. Top-of-the-line travel cards pay 2X spending or more — but you’ll pay for it in the annual fee.

The signup bonus is also fairly standard for a fee-free travel card. You’ll earn 25,000 online bonus points if you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening – that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.

Again, pretty good, but nothing too exciting here.

Who should get this card

If you’re an existing Bank of America customer, the pumped-up rewards program makes this a card to consider. You can earn a 10% to 75% bonus on card spending depending on how much money you have banked with BofA.

Keep in mind, you’ll have to have some serious cash invested in this bank to earn this bonus, which probably still isn’t enough to compel you to switch bank accounts just for the credit card rewards.

What can those BofA bonuses earn you?

For example, if you have the highest status of Platinum Honors with Bank of America — which comes with a hefty $100,000 minimum account balance requirement, you can earn a 75% bonus on your cash-back rewards.

If you have no banking relationship and spend $1,000 in three months, you earn $15 in redeemable travel credits back. If you have a Bank of America bank account, with the 10% customer bonus, that gives you another $1.50 back for a total of $18.50 back.

But if you have the highest Platinum Honors Preferred status, that additional 75% back means you get a total of $26.25 on the $1,000 spent.

Advantages
  • Get 25,000 bonus points when you spend at least $1,000 within the first 90 days of opening an account.
  • Points earned can be redeemed for a statement credit for any qualified travel spending.
  • 0% APR on purchases for the first 12 billing cycles, then 17.24% - 25.24% variable APR.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
Disadvantages
  • You have to make your travel purchase first and then redeem your rewards as a credit on your statement. Some other rewards programs allow you to use your rewards directly to make the purchase.
  • No additional perks like lounge access or travel protections that come with many other travel rewards cards.
  • There are other rewards cards that earn a higher flat rate back.

Fees and APR

  • This card has no annual fee.
  • You’ll pay no foreign transaction fee if you use this card overseas.
  • There’s a balance transfer fee of $10 or 3% of the amount being transferred, whichever is greater. All transfers carry a variable APR of 17.24% – 25.24%.
  • This card comes with a 0% introductory APR for 12 billing cycles for purchases, then a variable APR of 17.24% – 25.24% thereafter.

Extras, perks and using points

Use your points to redeem for a statement credit to pay for any travel-related expenses including flights, hotels, vacation packages, rental cars, cruises and baggage fees.

As a Bank of America customer, you can get a 10% points bonus on every purchase when you have an active Bank of America checking or savings account. If you’re a Bank of America Preferred Rewards client, you could increase that bonus from 25% to 75%.

You have to maintain a combined balance of at least $20,000 with either Bank of America, Merrill Lynch or Merrill Edge to get these increased rewards but if you do, the cash-back rewards go from good to outstanding.

You don’t have to have to have the full amount of credit available to redeem, partial redemptions are allowed.

The points never expire and there is no fee to redeem them.