Best frequent flyer and rewards credit cards March 2018

Sally McMullen 13 March 2018 NEWS

Book your next holiday sooner with up to 100,000 bonus points and travel in style with lounge passes and complimentary travel insurance.

If you're looking for a credit card to reward every dollar you spend, look no further than our round up of the most competitive frequent flyer and rewards credit cards this month. We've based our March lineup on the cards with the biggest bonus points offers and the most value for your money available through finder. There is even an exclusive deal that you won’t be able to find anywhere else.

Whether you’re a Qantas Frequent Flyer, fan of Virgin Australia’s Velocity or prefer the flexibility of credit card rewards, you can start comparing some of the products with the greatest points potential below.

Best credit cards for Qantas Points

  • American Express Qantas Ultimate credit card

  • Bonus points. 100,000 bonus Qantas Points.
  • Earn rate. Up to 2.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent.
  • Annual fee. $450 p.a.
  • Offer end date. 9 April 2018.

The Amex Qantas Ultimate credit card has once again topped our list of picks for Qantas Points chasers.

If you’re a new Amex cardholder, apply by 9 April 2018 and spend $3,000 on eligible purchases in the first three months, and you’ll score 100,000 bonus Qantas Points! That’s enough points to fly one way from Sydney to Vancouver (96,000 points) or San Francisco in Business Class. It’s also enough for return flights in Business Class from Sydney to Denpasar Bali (50,000 points each way) or Auckland (36,000 points each way).

You’ll earn 1.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent on eligible purchases, which is one of the highest standard earn rates you can expect among Qantas Frequent Flyer credit cards. You can also earn 0.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent with government bodies. Loyal Qantas customers will be rewarded with 1 additional Qantas Point per $1 when the card is used to pay for select purchases with the airline.

There are plenty of travel perks as well. Each year you’ll receive a $450 Qantas travel credit, which you can redeem for eligible international or domestic flights. You can travel in style with two entries to the American Express Lounge at Sydney International Airport (and in Melbourne from 27 March). You’ll also get two complimentary Qantas Club lounge invitations after your first card spend on select Qantas products each anniversary year.

This card has a hefty annual fee of $450 p.a., which you can offset with the travel credit and lounge passes. However, it does have a high purchase rate of 20.74% p.a., so it isn’t suited to cardholders who usually carry a balance from month to month.

The NAB Qantas Rewards Signature card currently comes with 100,000 bonus points as well. Although it has a lower annual fee of $395, it has a higher spend requirement of $4,000 in the first two months to get the bonus points, fewer extra features and a lower standard earn rate.

  • Honourable mention: St.George Amplify Signature card (finder exclusive offer)

The St.George Amplify Signature card offers 90,000 Qantas Points when you apply by 22 March 2018 and meet a spend requirement of $5,000 in the first 90 days. Plus, if you apply through finder, you’ll save with a reduced annual fee of $139 p.a. for the first year ($279 p.a. thereafter).

You can earn 0.75 Qantas Points per $1 spent overseas and receive two complimentary Qantas Club Lounge invitations each year. You can also save on travel costs with complimentary international travel insurance.

Best credit card for Velocity Points

  • Velocity Australia Velocity High Flyer

  • Bonus points. 80,000 Velocity Points.
  • Earn rate. Up to 1 Velocity Point per $1 spent.
  • Annual fee. $289 p.a.
  • Offer end date. 30 April 2018.

The Virgin Australia Velocity High Flyer card has maintained its number one position in the Velocity ranks in March. When you apply by 30 April 2018, you could score 80,000 Velocity Points! That’s roughly enough points to pay for a Premium Economy flight from Sydney to Los Angeles or from Melbourne to Hong Kong in Business Class.

Securing the bonus points is a little more difficult than the spend requirements on most frequent flyer cards. Once you’ve activated your card, you can earn 16,000 bonus points every month you spend at least $3,000 on eligible purchases for the first five months. This means you can earn up to a total of 80,000 bonus Velocity Points in the first five months, although the total spend requirement is $15,000. So you’ll need to make sure this aligns with your spending budget before you’re enticed by the promise of points.

You can collect 1 Velocity Point per $1 spent on eligible purchases up to $8,000 per month and then 0.5 Velocity Points per $1 spent thereafter (uncapped). You’ll receive a complimentary $129 Virgin Australia gift voucher each year. You just need to make an eligible purchase with your card within two months of requesting your voucher. You can also wait for your next flight in luxury with two passes to Virgin Australian lounges every year.

This card has a relatively weighty annual fee of $289 p.a. It also has a purchase interest rate of 20.74% p.a. Similar to most frequent flyer cards, you’ll need to earn enough points to justify the annual fee and it’s best suited to cardholders who can afford to pay their balance in full each month to avoid interest.

  • Honourable mention: American Express Velocity Platinum card

You may only earn 50,000 bonus Velocity Points with the American Express Velocity Platinum card, but it has a lower spend requirement of $3,000 in the first three months to get them.

You’ll enjoy a more competitive earn rate of 1.5 Velocity Points per $1 spent on eligible purchases plus an additional Velocity Point per dollar spend on select Virgin Australia purchases. You can also save on travel costs with a complimentary domestic return flight each year, two single-entry passes to domestic Virgin Australia lounges annually and complimentary travel insurance.

Although it boasts competitive extras, this card has a much higher annual fee of $375 and has a purchase rate of 20.74% p.a.

Best card for credit card rewards

  • American Express Explorer credit card

  • Bonus points. 100,000 Membership Rewards points.
  • Earn rate. 2 points per $1 spent.
  • Annual fee. $395 p.a.
  • Offer end date. 9 April 2018.

The American Express Explorer credit card is our top pick for rewards credit cards once again. This is because when you apply by 9 April 2018 and spend $3,000 in the first three months, you’ll score 100,000 Membership Rewards points.

That’s more than enough to redeem a $500 David Jones voucher (67,500 points) or $1,000 to spend on travel via Webjet (10,000 Membership Rewards = $100 worth of travel). If you prefer frequent flyer points, you can transfer them to your account with partnered programs including Velocity Frequent Flyer, Emirates Skywards, Etihad Guest and Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer. To give you an idea of the potential, 100,000 bonus points would convert to 75,000 Velocity Points!

You’ll continue to earn 2 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on eligible purchases and 0.5 points per $1 spent on government bodies in Australia (such as on your ATO bill). Each year, you’ll receive a $400 travel credit to use at American Express Travel, plus two entries to the American Express Lounge at Sydney International airport plus complimentary travel insurance.

You can use the travel credit to offset the Amex Explorer’s $395 p.a. annual fee with the travel credit, but you should watch out for the 20.74% p.a. interest rate.

  • Honourable mention: Citi Platinum credit card

The Citi Platinum credit card bags the silver medal in the rewards credit card category once again. Until 30 June 2018, new cardholders can earn 100,000 bonus reward points when they meet the spend requirement of $3,000 in the first 90 days.

You can spend your points on products and gift cards from the Citi Rewards Store, redeem them for a statement credit or swap them for frequent flyer points with Velocity, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer and Emirates Skywards. As an example, 100,000 Citi Rewards points are worth 40,000 Velocity Points.

This card comes with complimentary travel insurance and access to the Citi Dining Program, meaning you can enjoy a free bottle of wine when you dine at participating restaurants. This card doesn’t come with airport lounge passes or a travel credit, but it does have a much lower annual fee of $49 p.a. for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter).

Compare these points credit cards side by side

Rates last updated September 25th, 2018
Name Product Bonus Points Rewards Program Rewards Points per $ spent Purchase rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
Qantas American Express Ultimate Card
55,000 bonus points
Qantas Frequent Flyer
20.74% p.a.
$450 p.a.
Receive 55,000 bonus Qantas Points, a $450 Qantas Travel Credit each year and 2 yearly complimentary Qantas Club lounge invitations.
St.George Amplify Signature - Online Offer
90,000 bonus points
Amplify Rewards
19.49% p.a.
$179 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($279 p.a. thereafter)
Enjoy a discounted $179 first year annual fee, 90,000 bonus Amplify Points and 2 complimentary lounge passes. Offers end on 2 October 2018.
Virgin Australia Velocity High Flyer Card - 80k Bonus Points offer
80,000 bonus points
Velocity Frequent Flyer
20.74% p.a.
$289 p.a.
Get the chance to earn 1 million Velocity Points and earn up to 80,000 bonus points. Plus, a 15 month balance transfer offer. Ends 31 Oct 2018.
American Express Velocity Platinum Card - Exclusive Offer
70,000 bonus points
Velocity Frequent Flyer
20.74% p.a.
$375 p.a.
finder Exclusive: Ends 26 September 2018 Receive 70,000 bonus Velocity Points when you spend $3,000 within the first 3 months. Plus, Status Credits & lounge passes.
American Express Explorer Credit Card
75,000 bonus points
Membership Rewards Gateway
20.74% p.a.
$395 p.a.
Get 75,000 bonus Membership Rewards points, a yearly $400 Travel Credit and 2 entries per year to the American Express Lounge. Ends 26 Sept 2018.
Citi Platinum Credit Card
200,000 bonus points
Citi Rewards Program
20.99% p.a.
$49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 10,000 monthly bonus reward Points for 20 months (200,000 total), enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer, plus, a $49 first year annual fee.

Compare up to 4 providers

Although these are our frequent flyer and rewards credit card picks for March, there is no one best card for every points hunter. To compare more options that’ll reward your spending, check out our rewards credit cards and frequent flyer credit cards guides.

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