Wyndham Rewards® Earner℠ Plus Card review: For the loyal guest wanting more
The elite status, discounts and chance to quickly rack up a lot of rewards make this card a winner for Wyndham loyalists.
Why you can trust Bankrate
At Bankrate, we have a mission to demystify the credit cards industry — regardless or where you are in your journey — and make it one you can navigate with confidence. Our team is full of a diverse range of experts from credit card pros to data analysts and, most importantly, people who shop for credit cards just like you. With this combination of expertise and perspectives, we keep close tabs on the credit card industry year-round to:
- Meet you wherever you are in your credit card journey to guide your information search and help you understand your options.
- Consistently provide up-to-date, reliable market information so you\'re well-equipped to make confident decisions.
- Reduce industry jargon so you get the clearest form of information possible, so you can make the right decision for you.
At Bankrate, we focus on the points consumers care about most: rewards, welcome offers and bonuses, APR, and overall customer experience. Any issuers discussed on our site are vetted based on the value they provide to consumers at each of these levels. At each step of the way, we fact-check ourselves to prioritize accuracy so we can continue to be here for your every next.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that we’re putting your interests first. Our award-winning editors and reporters create honest and accurate content to help you make the right financial decisions.
We value your trust. Our mission is to provide readers with accurate and unbiased information, and we have editorial standards in place to ensure that happens. Our editors and reporters thoroughly fact-check editorial content to ensure the information you’re reading is accurate. We maintain a firewall between our advertisers and our editorial team. Our editorial team does not receive direct compensation from our advertisers.
Bankrate’s editorial team writes on behalf of YOU – the reader. Our goal is to give you the best advice to help you make smart personal finance decisions. We follow strict guidelines to ensure that our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers. Our editorial team receives no direct compensation from advertisers, and our content is thoroughly fact-checked to ensure accuracy. So, whether you’re reading an article or a review, you can trust that you’re getting credible and dependable information.
How We Make Money
You have money questions. Bankrate has answers. Our experts have been helping you master your money for over four decades. We continually strive to provide consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout life’s financial journey.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that our content is honest and accurate. Our award-winning editors and reporters create honest and accurate content to help you make the right financial decisions. The content created by our editorial staff is objective, factual, and not influenced by our advertisers.
We’re transparent about how we are able to bring quality content, competitive rates, and useful tools to you by explaining how we make money.
Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. We are compensated in exchange for placement of sponsored products and, services, or by you clicking on certain links posted on our site. Therefore, this compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear within listing categories. Other factors, such as our own proprietary website rules and whether a product is offered in your area or at your self-selected credit score range can also impact how and where products appear on this site. While we strive to provide a wide range offers, Bankrate does not include information about every financial or credit product or service.
Coverage.com, LLC is a licensed insurance producer (NPN: 19966249). Coverage.com services are only available in states where it is licensed. Coverage.com may not offer insurance coverage in all states or scenarios. All insurance products are governed by the terms in the applicable insurance policy, and all related decisions (such as approval for coverage, premiums, commissions and fees) and policy obligations are the sole responsibility of the underwriting insurer. The information on this site does not modify any insurance policy terms in any way.
Wyndham Rewards® Earner℠ Plus Card Overview
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card is Wyndham’s top-tier rewards card for consumers. It features generous rewards for Wyndham hotel spending and on everyday expenses like gas, groceries and eligible dining. It also comes with some nice perks, including anniversary bonus points and automatic Platinum status, which is Wyndham’s second-highest elite level, just behind Diamond status.
Frequent travelers who prefer Wyndham hotels can get plenty of value out of the Earner Plus card. But it won’t be a good fit for everyone. Other hotel credit cards come with higher sign-up bonuses and bonus rewards. Some even have perks that could be more appealing for seasoned travelers, like complimentary airport lounge access.
To see if the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card is the right fit for you, read more about it in our review below.
What are the pros and cons?
- The best value for rewards redemption is limited to Wyndham hotel bookings
- High upper APR limit could mean high interest charges based on your creditworthiness
A deeper look into the current card offer
- Rewards rate: 6X points per dollar on Hotels By Wyndham and gas purchases; 4X points per dollar on eligible dining and grocery purchases (excluding Target and Walmart); 1X point per dollar on all other purchases
- Welcome offer: 45,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days, enough for up to six free night stays
- Annual fee: $75
- Purchase intro APR: 0 percent promotional APR for 6 billing cycles on all Wyndham Timeshare Purchases
- Balance transfer intro APR: 0 percent introductory APR for 15 months on balance transfers made within the first 45 days
- Regular APR: 19.49 percent, 23.74 percent or 28.74 percent variable APR depending on the borrower’s creditworthiness
Current welcome bonus
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card is currently offering 45,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days. This is enough points to cover up to six free nights at a participating Wyndham hotel with award nights depending on location.
Bankrate estimates Wyndham Rewards points are currently worth an average of 0.9 cents each, so this sign-up bonus can be worth around $405. This is a decent offer, but it falls short of other hotel rewards cards with annual fees of less than $100.
For example, the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card currently offers 130,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after spending $2,000 in purchases in the first three months of opening an account. We estimate Hilton Honors points are worth 0.6 cents each, so this offer is valued at an impressive $780. Even with a slightly higher $95 annual fee and a larger spending requirement, the Hilton Honors Surpass card’s sign-up offer can provide greater short-term value if you’re able to justify spending the extra $1,000.
The card has a rewards structure that benefits Wyndham loyalists and frequent travelers. It has a healthy balance of boosted rewards rates for Wyndham hotel stays, gas, eligible dining and grocery purchases.
Cardholders earn 6X points for every $1 spent on Hotels By Wyndham and gas. You’ll rack up rewards quickly if you’re often on the road and prefer to stay at the brand’s hotels. The card also features 4X points per $1 spent on eligible dining and grocery purchases (excluding Target and Walmart), as well as 1X points per $1 spent on all other purchases.
As a loyalty member, a cardholder will automatically earn an additional 10 points per $1 or 1,000 points, whichever is greater, when booking qualified stays with Wyndham. This means that they can earn up to a generous 16 points per $1 for hotel stays when combined with the card’s bonus points for Wyndham purchases.
There are several options when it comes to redeeming points using the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card, including using points for free hotel stays, discounted rates, shopping and activities.
The card has two options to redeem points when booking stays at Wyndham properties. Wyndham’s go free® redemption option allows cardholders to book award nights at participating hotels. Depending on the participating location, award nights can go for 7,500 points, 15,000 points or 30,000 points.
Cardholders can also redeem points for a discounted stay at a participating hotel, club resort or vacation rental. With Wyndham’s go fast® awards stay, you can redeem 1,500 to 6,000 points and get a discounted rate at participating hotels or 3,000 to 6,000 points for a discounted rate at a participating club resort or vacation rental.
Aside from redeeming points when booking stays with Wyndham, cardholders have several other redemption options. They can use points to book tours and activities, purchase gift cards and merchandise and make charitable contributions. Cardholders can also transfer points to partner programs including Amtrak, American Airlines, United Airlines and more.
How much are points worth?
According to Bankrate’s latest points and miles valuations, Wyndham Rewards are worth roughly 0.9 cents per point, which is a good value Compared to other major hotel brands, second only to Hyatt:
|Rewards program||Bankrate value*||Estimated value of 50,000 points/miles|
|World of Hyatt||2.1 cents||$1,050|
|Wyndham Rewards||0.9 cents||$450|
|IHG One Rewards||0.7 cents||$350|
|Marriott Bonvoy||0.7 cents||$350|
|Best Western Rewards||0.6 cents||$300|
|Hilton Honors||0.6 cents||$300|
*Based on median point values across budget, mid-tier and luxury hotel bookings.
Even though Wyndham points aren’t as valuable as Hyatt points, they’re still a great deal when booking stays with Wyndham as long as you’re able to get a baseline value of 0.9 cents when redeeming your award.
To figure out the value of your rewards at the time of redemption, divide the cash cost of your redemption option by the number of points needed. For example, if you book a room that costs $124 per night or 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points, your points are worth 0.8 cents ($124 / 15,000 = $0.008 or 0.8 cents) This is close to our 0.9-cent valuation, so you’re getting a decent deal.
But if you redeem your rewards for a $100 gift card that costs 27,000 points, the value of your rewards drops to 0.4 cents ($100 / 27,000 = $0.0037 or 0.4 cents. This is well below the baseline 0.9-cent value you should look for when redeeming Wyndham Rewards, so you’re better off buying a gift card with cash and saving your points for a better deal.
Other cardholder perks
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card is a valuable card for travelers who book frequent stays with Wyndham. It also comes with a host of other benefits, including unlimited earning and perks like free Wi-Fi during qualified stays, late checkouts (subject to availability) and rental car upgrades at participating locations in the U.S. and Canada.
Hotel discounts and perks
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card really shines when it comes to booking stays with Wyndham. It features both high rewards on qualified bookings, as well as the opportunity to redeem points for free nights and discounted stays.
For example, when redeeming points for go free® awards, you can redeem 10 percent fewer Wyndham rewards points when you book award nights. So instead of needing 7,500 points to earn an award night at Wyndham’s tier-1 level, you only need 6,750 points; at the 15,000-point level, you only need 13,500; and at the 30,000-point level, you only need 27,000 points for an award night.
Aside from the lucrative rewards, cardholders also gain access to Platinum member benefits when booking travel with Wyndham, including 15 percent more bonus points on eligible Wyndham spending, free Wi-Fi during qualified stays, preferred room choice during qualified stays, late check-out (subject to availability) and early check-in during qualified stays. Without the card, it takes nine nights to qualify for these perks.
Cardholders receive 7,500 bonus points each anniversary year, which is enough for up to one free night at some participating Wyndham properties. While some other hotel credit cards offer members a free night flat out, Wyndham’s annual bonus is a similar alternative and can also be used with other redemption options.
Unlimited earnings potential
Unlike some other rewards cards, there’s no cap on your earnings for the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card. This means that for every dollar you spend, you’ll earn points that can be redeemed on future purchases, with no upper limit.
Rental car upgrades
Cardholders who rent a car through Avis or Budget can receive a free upgrade on their car rental at participating locations in the U.S. and Canada. This is a nice extra benefit for frequent travelers that isn’t widely available on other card options.
Purchase intro APR
If you’re looking to book a stay at Wyndham Timeshare in the near future, the card’s low promotional APR is an attractive perk. When you open the card, you’re eligible for 0 percent intro APR for 6 billing cycles on all Wyndham Timeshare Purchases (19.49 percent, 23.74 percent or 28.74 percent variable APR after).
Balance transfer APR
The balance transfer APR for the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card is also a pretty good offer for borrowers looking to transfer a balance from another card. Cardholders are eligible for a 0 percent introductory APR for 15 months on balance transfers made within the first 45 days (19.49 percent, 23.74 percent or 28.74 percent variable APR after).
No foreign transactions fees
In keeping with its robust selection of benefits for frequent travelers, the card charges no foreign transaction fees. This is an appealing perk for cardholders who travel internationally with any regularity.
Fraud liability protection
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card comes with $0 fraud liability protection. Cardholders aren’t responsible for any charge they didn’t authorize, which can give borrowers peace of mind when it comes to stolen cards and potential fraudulent charges.
Rates and fees
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card does come with a few fees. These include:
- Annual fee: The card comes with an annual fee of $75, although in practice this is almost entirely canceled out by the 7,500-point annual bonus.
- APR: The variable APR for this card is 19.49 percent, 23.74 percent or 28.74 percent depending on the creditworthiness of the borrower. While the lower end of this spectrum is in line with industry averages, the steep upper limit may deter borrowers with less-than-perfect credit.
- Balance transfer fee: The card charges a balance transfer fee of $5 or 5 percent of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
- Cash advance fee: The card charges a cash advance fee of $10 or 5 percent of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
- Late payment fee: If you make a late payment, you may be charged a late payment fee of up to $40.
- Returned payment fee: The card comes with a returned payment fee of up to $40.
How the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card compares to other hotel rewards cards
There are lots of other hotel credit cards besides Wyndham, and part of your decision will ultimately come down to personal preference and brand loyalty. That said, some cards do offer standout benefits when it comes to welcome offers, rates and extra perks.
Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card vs. Wyndham Rewards® Earner℠ Card
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Card is the entry-level Wyndham card and holds up well against its bigger sibling, making it an appealing option for budget travelers. While the Earner Plus card offers more bonus points for Wyndham stays, eligible dining and grocery purchases, the Earner card comes with no annual fee to offset with your earnings.
The Earner Plus comes with Platinum elite status and automatic anniversary bonus points without having to meet a spending requirement. These added benefits bring value to the Earner Plus you won’t find on the entry-level Earner card, which only provides Gold elite status and discounts for Wyndham stays.
Wyndham Rewards Earner® Plus Card vs. Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card
The Rewards Earner Plus card and the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card have annual fees that come in under $100 and some nice perks that can help offset their respective costs. The Hilton Honors Surpass card comes with a higher sign-up bonus and a Priority Pass membership that includes 10 complimentary airport lounge visits each year. And even though you have to spend $15,000 in a calendar year to qualify for a Free Night Award, some travelers will find these perks more appealing than the automatic anniversary points and other benefits offered by the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus card.
Both cards come with generous rewards programs that offer bonus rewards for more than just hotel stays, giving you a chance to rack up points on everyday purchases as well. While Wyndham Rewards carry a higher value, the Hilton Honors card offers higher bonus points in multiple areas, including an impressive flat rate of 3X points for general purchases that fall outside of bonus categories. And thanks to the automatic Gold elite status that comes with this Hilton card, your spending for Hilton visits will earn an 80-percent bonus on top of the Hilton Honors base points. Depending on your spending habits, these higher rates can help the Hilton Honors Surpass match or even eclipse the value of the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus card.
Best cards to pair with this card
The Wyndham rewards credit card excels at a very specific function: generous hotel rewards and travel perks for customers loyal to the Wyndham brand. While this card might not have the versatility of a more general rewards credit card, it pays dividends for committed customers who frequently stay with Wyndham.
That said, there are a few other cards that pair especially well with the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card. For frequent travelers interested in this card, an additional travel rewards credit card for flights and other traveling expenses is a good idea. A robust travel rewards card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a nice complement, and earns 2 points per dollar on travel and dining at restaurants, along with discounted travel bookings through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
Bankrate’s take — Is the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card worth it?
If you travel frequently and prefer to book your stays with Wyndham properties, this card is a clear winner. With up to 6X points per $1 for qualifying hotel stays as a loyalty member, a wide array of travel-related perks and benefits and redemption options for free and discounted stays, the card is well worth the annual fee for Wyndham loyalists.
On the other hand, if you travel infrequently or don’t want to limit your options to Wyndham properties, there are other more lucrative rewards credit cards that could better suit your needs. With a $75 annual fee, the card also isn’t the best option for borrowers looking for a truly fee-free card.
The information about the Wyndham Rewards® Earner Plus Card and Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.