Best frequent flyer and rewards credit cards May 2019
Compare credit cards with up to 200,000 bonus points and discover where they could take you.
This month's round-up of frequent flyer and rewards credit cards features some of the highest bonus points offers we've seen this year. Whether you're partial to Qantas Points, building your Velocity balance or the flexibility of bank rewards programs, you can start comparing some of the most competitive offers available in May.
How did we pick this month's line-up?
We've narrowed down this month's line-up based on the cards that reward the most competitive bonus points, extra perks and annual fees available through Finder. To help you earn more points, we've filtered our top picks by cards that offer at least 50,000 bonus points in the first 12 months. When looking at the standard earn rates, we've only included cards that collect 0.5 points per $1 or more.
There is no one best rewards credit card for every points chaser, so you should compare your options before you commit to a new card.
Best credit cards for Qantas Points
- Bonus points. Up to 100,000 Qantas Points.
- Earn rate. Up to 2 Qantas Points per $1.
- Annual fee. $149 first-year annual fee ($299 p.a. thereafter).
The Qantas Premier Platinum credit card couples one of the biggest bonus points offers on the market with a reduced annual fee in the first year.
When you apply by 30 May 2019 and spend $3,500 on eligible purchases in the first 90 days, you'll get 70,000 bonus Qantas Points. You'll receive an extra 30,000 bonus Qantas Points within 12 weeks after paying the second year's annual fee too.
If you get the card by the end of May, you'll also save with a $149 annual fee in the first year, which reverts to $299 p.a. after that. There are some other cards that award new cardholders with 100,000 bonus points in the first 12 months, but they charge higher annual fees than this one.
You could use 100,000 Qantas Points to fly return from Perth to Singapore in business class (50,000 points each way), one way from Sydney to London in premium economy (96,000 points) or Melbourne to LA in premium economy (96,000 points). Your points balance will continue to grow as you earn 1 Qantas Point per $1 spent in Australia up to $10,000 per statement period and 0.5 points per $1 after that. You'll also collect 1.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent overseas and 2 points per $1 spent on Qantas flights, Qantas Club membership and purchases through the Qantas Store.
You can travel in style with two single-entry invitations to use at eligible Qantas Club or Qantas-operated international business lounges each year. You'll save up to 20% on flight costs when you use the Qantas Premier Concierge to book a selected domestic companion flight once each year. Like most frequent flyer cards, this card comes with complimentary travel insurance.
You can pay off existing debt with 0% on balance transfers for 18 months with the Qantas Premier Platinum, but it won't earn you any points. Any remaining debt from the balance transfer will attract the cash advance rate after the introductory period. This card charges a 19.99% p.a. purchase interest rate, so you should aim to pay your balance in full each month to ensure the interest costs don't outweigh the value of the rewards.
Honourable mention: St.George Amplify Signature – Qantas card
You'll pocket 80,000 bonus Qantas Points when you apply for the St.George Amplify Signature – Qantas card by 22 May 2019 and spend $4,000 on eligible purchases in the first 90 days. You'll collect an unlimited 0.75 Qantas Points per $1 spent and receive 2 complimentary Qantas Club Lounge invitations each year.
You can cut back on travel and shopping costs with complimentary international travel and purchase insurance covers. You'll also save $100 with a first-year annual fee of $179, which reverts to $279 p.a. after that. Your purchases will attract the 19.74% p.a. interest rate and you can take advantage of 0% on balance transfers for 6 months, although you won't earn points this way. The balance transfer rate reverts to 21.49% p.a. at the end of the promotional period.
Best credit cards for Velocity Points
- Bonus points. Up to 75,000 Velocity Points.
- Earn rate. Up to 0.66 Velocity Points per $1 spent.
- Annual fee. $64 annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter).
The Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer credit card has one of the highest bonus points offers for fans of Velocity Frequent Flyers. New cardholders will receive up to 75,000 bonus Velocity Points when they apply by 30 June 2019. You'll get 25,000 bonus Velocity Points each month you spend at least $1,500 on eligible transactions for the first three months.
With 75,000 Velocity Points, you could fly return from Sydney to Bali in Premium Economy (36,700 points each way) or from Brisbane to Singapore in business class (59,500 points). You'll earn 0.66 Velocity Points per $1 spent on eligible purchases up to $1,500 per statement period and 0.5 Velocity Points per $1 spent after that.
Each year, you'll get a $129 Virgin Australia Gift Voucher that you can use to book a holiday while offsetting the card's annual fee. You can also travel with peace of mind with complimentary international travel insurance. If you're paying off another debt, this card offers 0% p.a. interest on balance transfers for the first 18 months. The cash advance rate will apply at the end of the promotional period and you won't earn any points on your balance transfer.
The Virgin Australia Velocity Flyer charges a high purchase interest rate of 20.74% p.a., so you should aim to clear your balance each month to avoid this cost.
Honourable mention: American Express Velocity Platinum credit card
When you use your new American Express Velocity Platinum card to spend $3,000 in the first 3 months, you'll receive a 50,000 bonus Velocity Points.
You'll collect 1.25 Velocity Points per $1 spent on eligible transactions, 0.5 points per $1 spent on government transactions and an additional Velocity Point per $1 spent on selected Virgin Australia purchases.
After you make your first spend each year, you'll receive a complimentary domestic return Virgin Australia flight. You'll also get two single entry passes to Virgin Australia lounges at selected domestic airports plus two complimentary entries to American Express lounges at Sydney or Melbourne international airport every year. This card also comes with complimentary travel insurance.
If you're looking to climb the Velocity tiers, this card is the only one that currently offers Velocity status credits. You'll get 100 Velocity Frequent Flyer Status Credits when you spend at least $50,000 on eligible purchases within the membership year. These perks come at the cost of a $375 p.a. annual fee and a 20.74% p.a. purchase interest rate.
Best credit cards for other rewards points
Citi Rewards Platinum credit card
- Bonus points. 100,000 bonus Citi reward Points.
- Earn rate. Up to 1 Citi reward Point per $1 spent.
- Annual fee. $49 in the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter).
Finder users can boost their points balances with an exclusive bonus deal when they apply for the Citi Rewards Platinum card by 30 June 2019. If you're approved and spend $3,000 in the first 90 days, you'll get 100,000 bonus Citi reward Points.
You can redeem your Citi reward Points for credit to your account, retail gift vouchers, partnered frequent flyer points and more. As an example, you could exchange 100,000 bonus Citi reward Points for 40,000 Velocity Points or make up most of the cost of a $500 Flight Centre voucher (worth 104,200 points).
You'll earn 1 Citi reward Point per $1 spent in Australia and overseas, but your points are capped at 10,000 per statement period on domestic transactions. You can take advantage of complimentary international travel insurance and the 24/7 concierge service. When you use your card to cover the bill at a partnered restaurant, you'll receive a free bottle of wine thanks to the Citibank Dining Program.
New Citi customers can manage existing debt and avoid interest with 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 15 months. A 1% balance transfer fee applies, you won't earn points on balance transfers and any remaining debt will attract the cash advance interest rate at the end of the promotional period.
When you apply by 30 June 2019, you'll save with a reduced first-year annual fee of $49, which reverts to $149 p.a. after that. This card charges 20.99% p.a. interest rate on purchases.
Honourable mention: St.George Amplify Signature
New St.George Amplify Signature cardholders can score a whopping 200,000 bonus Amplify Points over the first 2 years. When you apply by 22 May 2019, you'll receive 100,000 bonus points in the first year and again in the second year when you spend at least $12,000 on eligible purchases each year.
You'll get more bonus points with this offer, but the spend requirement and annual fees are higher than the Citi Rewards Platinum card highlighted above. This card also offers 1.5 Amplify Points per $1 spent on eligible transactions. As well as rewards, you can save with a discounted annual fee of $179 for the first year, which reverts to $279 p.a. in subsequent years.
You can help offset the annual fee with two Priority Pass airport lounge passes per year, complimentary travel insurance and purchase cover. This card offers 0% p.a. on balance transfers for the first 6 months, although this won't earn you points. The balance transfer rate reverts to the 21.49% p.a. cash advance rate after this, so you should aim to pay your balance in full before this applies.
Compare these credit cards side by side
You can learn more about a card or apply for one by clicking through to the full review in the table above. As these are only some of the products available for points collectors right now, you can compare more frequent flyer and rewards credit cards on Finder.