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Bank of America Premium Rewards vs. Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card

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Although not as popular as cards from other issuers, Bank of America boasts its own share of cash back credit cards, general rewards cards and travel credit cards. Stand-out offerings include the Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card and the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card, both of which dole out flexible rewards points with a base rate of 1.5X points on regular purchases.

If you can’t decide between these two cards, it’s smart to compare them based on their full rewards rates, welcome offers and benefits. Read on to learn how they stack up in the most important categories.

Main details

Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card
Welcome bonus Earn 50,000 online bonus points after you spend $3,000 on purchases within 90 days of account opening Earn 25,000 online bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases within 90 days of account opening
Rewards rate 2X points on travel and dining purchases and 1.5X points on all other purchases 1.5X points on all purchases
Intro APR N/A 0 percent APR on purchases for 15 billing cycles, followed by a variable APR of 14.24% to 24.24%
Annual fee $95 $0

Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card vs. Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card highlights

As you decide which of these Bank of America credit cards is better for you, consider which one wins in the following important categories.

Welcome bonus winner: Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card

The Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card is the clear winner since you can earn 50,000 bonus points instead of 25,000 bonus points.

Considering that points earned with either card are worth one cent each, this means that the Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card bonus is worth $500 and the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card bonus is worth $250.

Rewards rate winner: Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card

While we like that the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card offers a flat rate of 1.5X points on all purchases, the Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card wins in this category, too.

Not only does the Bank of America Premium Rewards card let you earn a flat rate of 1.5X points on general purchases, but you also earn 2X points per dollar on all dining and travel purchases.

Tip: Both of these cards have a higher rewards potential if you’re a member of the Bank of America Preferred Rewards program. Depending on the tier of membership you qualify for, you could earn 25 percent to 75 percent more points for each dollar you spend.

Annual fee winner: Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card

While the rewards rate on the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card is slightly lower, this card comes with no annual fee. In contrast, the Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card charges a $95 annual fee that is not waived the first year.

Intro offer winner: Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card

The Bank of America Premium Rewards card doesn’t include any intro APR offers, so the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card also wins in this category since it has an introductory APR offer for purchases. Specifically, new customers are eligible for a 0 percent APR on purchases for 15 billing cycles, after which they’ll pay a variable APR of 14.24 percent to 24.24 percent.

While this introductory rate may not matter if you’re someone who always pays your credit card bill in full and on time, it can help you save a lot on interest if you need to pay down a large purchase over several months.

Foreign transaction fee winner: Tie

Neither of these rewards cards charge foreign transaction fees on purchases made abroad, so they tie in this category. Either card would be a solid choice for people who travel outside the country often.

Which card earns the most?

While both of these rewards cards offer a flat 1.5X points per dollar spent on regular purchases, the Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card also offers 2X points per dollar on travel and dining. As a result, anyone who spends any money on dining and travel will earn more points with this card overall.

That said, you may be wondering how much more in rewards you would earn with the Bank of America Premium Rewards card, as well as if the extra rewards are worth paying the $95 annual fee. The spending example below can help you decide.

Bank of America Premium Rewards vs. Bank of America Travel Rewards spending example

Let’s say you have a family of four with two adults under the age of 50 and two kids (a boy and a girl) ages 12 and 13. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), your average food spending might be $1,224.70 per month (or $14,696.40 per year) on a moderate plan.

In addition to food spending, let’s say your family also spends $300 per month ($3,600 per year) on dining out and $5,000 per year on airfare and hotels across two separate family vacations. Let’s also imagine you spend $1,000 per month ($12,000 per year) in miscellaneous purchases.

With the Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card, you would earn 57,244 points (worth $572 in rewards) the first year:

  • 22,044 points on groceries
  • 7,200 points on dining out
  • 10,000 points on travel
  • 18,000 points on miscellaneous purchases

If you add in the 50,000 bonus points (worth $500) you can earn during the first year, the first-year rewards haul works out to $1,072.

With the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card, on the other hand, you would earn 52,944 points (worth $529 in rewards) the first year:

  • 22,044 points on groceries
  • 5,400 points on dining out
  • 7,500 points on travel
  • 18,000 points on miscellaneous purchases

If you add in the 25,000 bonus points (worth $250) you can earn during the first year, the first-year rewards haul works out to $779.

Why should you get the Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card?

The Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card can be a better choice if you don’t mind paying an annual fee. You’ll earn a more generous welcome bonus within the first few months and more points on all dining and travel purchases.

Plus, this premium card also comes with more cardholder perks overall.

Additional benefits

The Bank of America Premium Rewards card benefits include trip delay insurance, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, baggage delay coverage, lost luggage reimbursements, emergency evacuation and transportation coverage, roadside assistance, concierge service, extended warranties and purchase protection against damage or theft. Cardholders are also eligible for an up to $100 credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, plus up to $100 in annual credits for airline incidentals.

Redemption options

When it comes time to redeem rewards, redemption options include deposits to an eligible Bank of America checking or savings account, credit to an eligible Merrill account, statement credits, gift cards or travel purchased through the Bank of America Travel Center.

Recommended credit score

The Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card requires good to excellent credit, which typically means having a FICO score of 670 or higher.

Why should you get the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card?

If you’re averse to paying the annual fee for a credit card, the Bank of America Travel Rewards card is easy to love. However, there are other reasons to consider this travel card, including its introductory APR offer for purchases and flexible travel redemption options.

Additional benefits

Besides the welcome offer and the chance to qualify for the Bank of America Preferred Rewards program (terms apply), the main cardholder perk to look forward to is the 0 percent intro APR offer for purchases for 15 billing cycles.

Redemption options

This card allows you to redeem points for cash, gift cards or statement credits for travel and dining purchases. Just pay for these purchases with your card and then use your points to erase all or part of the purchase from your bill. You can request credits for travel and dining purchases up to 12 months after the purchase date.

Recommended credit score

The Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card requires good to excellent credit, which typically means having a FICO score of 670 or higher.

The bottom line

While the Bank of America Premium Rewards card is a better fit for people who want a more generous welcome offer and a higher earning rate, the Bank of America Travel Rewards card lets users rack up flexible rewards with no annual fee. By taking the time to compare these two cards side by side, you can decide which Bank of America travel card is a better fit for your needs.

Written by
Holly D. Johnson
Author, Award-Winning Writer
Holly Johnson writes expert content on personal finance, credit cards, loyalty and insurance topics. In addition to writing for Bankrate and CreditCards.com, Johnson does ongoing work for clients that include CNN, Forbes Advisor, LendingTree, Time Magazine and more.
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