Hotel Credit Cards

Compare the best hotel rewards credit cards for the greatest savings and top rewards.

By   |   Updated 11 Apr 2024

As seen on

Media - The Sydney Morning Herald
Media - Yahoo Finance
Media - News.com.au
Media - Daily Mail Australia
Media - Australian Fintech
Media - Dynamic Business

Comparing hotel credit cards

American Express Platinum Card

On website

Apply by 25 June 2024

American Express Platinum Card

Highlights

  • Acquire 150,000 Bonus Membership Rewards Points by applying before 25 June 2024, getting approved, and spending $5,000 on your new Card within the initial 3 months. T&Cs apply. Exclusive to New Amex Card Members.
  • Utilize a $450 Platinum Travel Credit annually for flight, hotel, or car rental bookings.
  • Indulge in up to $400 per calendar year when dining at a curated selection of over 1,400 hand-picked restaurants, both domestically and internationally. Terms and Conditions apply.

Pros

  • Receive 150,000 Bonus Membership Rewards Points when you meet the criteria.
  • Receive a $450 Platinum Travel Credit each year.
  • Enjoy up to $400 Global Dining Credit per calendar year.
  • Access to more than 1,400 lounges globally, including The Centurion® Lounge.
  • Get the Amex Experiences App to access information on Platinum benefits, travel offers, events and recommended merchants.

Cons

  • The annual fee of $1,450.
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card

On website

Highlights

  • No annual fee in the initial year, saving you $195.
  • Accrue 3 Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent at major supermarkets and petrol stations.
  • Access $200 allocated for annual travel expenses, applicable towards eligible flights, hotels, or car rentals when booked through American Express Travel.

Pros

  • $0 annual fee in the first year, saving you $195.
  • Receive $200 to spend on eligible domestic and international flights, hotels, or car hire with American Express Travel.
  • Smartphone Screen Cover for smartphone screen repairs up to $500.

Cons

  • The ongoing purchase rate of 23.99%.
American Express Platinum Business Card

On website

Highlights

  • Obtain 350,000 bonus Membership Rewards points by applying before 25 June 2024, getting approved, and spending $12,000 on your card within the initial 3 months. Exclusive to New American Express Card Members.
  • Earn up to 2.25 pts per $1 spent.
  • Enjoy exclusive Platinum travel, experience, and dining privileges.

Pros

  • The offer of 350,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you meet the criteria.
  • Earn up to 2.25 pts per $1 spent and 1 point per $1 spent at the ATO.
  • Access to more than 1,400 lounges globally, including The Centurion® Lounge.
  • Gold status match at Marriott Bonvoy, Hilton Honors, and Premium status at Radisson Hotel Group.
  • Get the Amex Experiences App to access information on Platinum benefits, travel offers, events and recommended merchants.

Cons

  • The annual fee of $1,750 p.a.
  • Since this is a charge card, the balance must be cleared every statement.
  • No balance transfer facility.
American Express Gold Business Card

On website

Highlights

  • Acquire 75,000 bonus Membership Reward points upon application approval and spending $1,000 on your card within the initial 2 months. Exclusive to New American Express Card Members.
  • Earn up to 1.5 Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent.
  • Experience enhanced flexibility with no pre-set spending limit.
  • Benefit from Travel Insurance covering up to $2.5 million in medical emergency expenses.

Pros

  • Receive 75,000 bonus Membership Reward points when you meet the criteria.
  • Earn up to 1.5 Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent.
  • No cap on how many points you can earn.
  • No pre-set spending limit means more flexibility.
  • Spend with Dell Technologies to receive up to $75 credit twice a year until 31 December 2024.
  • Membership Rewards points can be transferred to a number of airlines, giving you options when booking travel.

Cons

  • The $119 fee for every additional card added.
  • Doesn't offer airport lounge access.
  • No access to concierge services.
American Express Explorer Credit Card

On website

Highlights

  • Obtain 50,000 Bonus Membership Rewards Points upon application approval and spending $4,000 on your new Card within the initial 3 months. T&Cs apply. Exclusive to New Amex Card Members.
  • Enjoy a $400 Travel Credit annually for flights, hotels, and car rentals when booked online using this card.
  • Benefit from complimentary domestic and international travel insurance coverage.

Pros

  • The 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points when approved and reach spend requirement within the first 3 months.
  • Receive a $400 travel credit every year.
  • Earn 2 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on purchases except for government bodies in Australia where you will earn 1 point per $1 spent (uncapped).
  • Get two complimentary entries per year to The Centurion® Lounge.

Cons

  • The $395 p.a. annual fee.
Qantas Premier Everyday Credit Card

On website

Highlights

  • Receive a potential boost of 8,000 bonus Qantas Points upon successful application by April 10, 2024. Gain 2 bonus Qantas Points for every $1 spent on qualifying purchases within 4 months post-card approval. Applicable Terms and Conditions.
  • Enjoy a modest annual fee of $49.
  • Benefit from a 0% p.a. rate for 12 months on balance transfers, which then transitions to the Cash Advance Rate.

Pros

  • Earn up to 8,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the criteria.
  • The low annual fee of $49 p.a.
  • Earn 0.75 Qantas Points per $1 spent on domestic purchases up to $3,000 per statement period.
  • Comes with complimentary overseas travel insurance.

Cons

  • There is a 3% foreign transaction fee.
St.George Amplify Signature Credit Card (Amplify)

On website

Apply by 31 July 2024

St.George Amplify Signature Credit Card (Amplify)

Highlights

  • Up to 150,000 Bonus Amplify Rewards Points earned upon spending $12,000 on eligible purchases within the first 12 months from card approval.
  • Initial card fee of $199 for the first year ($295 p.a. thereafter).
  • 0% p.a. interest for 24 months on balance transfers with a 1% balance transfer fee applied to transferred amounts.
  • Comes with complimentary overseas travel insurance coverage for up to 6 months.

Pros

  • The 150,000 bonus Amplify Rewards Points.
  • Save $96 with the $199 card fee for the first year.
  • Enjoy 2 complimentary Priority Pass lounge visits each year when you enroll in Priority Pass.
  • Comes with concierge services.

Cons

  • After the initial year, the annual fee is $295 p.a.
  • There is a 1% balance transfer fee.
Qantas Premier Platinum Credit Card

On website

Highlights

  • Get up to 80,000 bonus Qantas Points. Get 60,000 bonus Qantas Points upon spending $3,000 or more on eligible purchases within 3 months from card approval. Plus, an extra 20,000 bonus points if you haven't earned Qantas Points with a credit card in the past 12 months. Terms and Conditions apply.
  • Benefit from 0% on Balance Transfer for 12 months with no Balance Transfer fee. Returns to Cash Advance rate thereafter. No interest-free days are applicable on retail purchases with an outstanding balance transfer.
  • Benefit from the reduced annual fee of $349 p.a. for the initial year. An ongoing annual fee of $399 p.a. is applicable in the 2nd year.

Pros

  • Earn up to 80,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the criteria.
  • 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers.
  • Additional savings with the $349 first-year annual fee.
  • Comes with complimentary travel insurance.

Cons

  • The annual fee increases to $399 p.a. after the initial year.
NAB Rewards Signature Credit Card

On website

Highlights

  • Earn up to 140,000 bonus Points. Obtain 100,000 bonus points upon spending $3,000 within the initial 60 days from account approval date and an additional 40,000 bonus points upon maintaining your card open for over 12 months. Terms and conditions apply.
  • Benefit from a reduced annual card fee of $195 p.a. for your first year (reverts to $295 p.a. thereafter).
  • Accrue 2.5 points on purchases made in major department and hardware stores.
  • Gain 1.25 points for every $1 spent on everyday purchases.

Pros

  • Earn up to 140,000 bonus NAB Rewards Points when you meet the criteria.
  • The discounted $195 annual fee on the first year.
  • 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months.
  • Includes international travel insurance.

Cons

  • There is a 3% balance transfer fee.

Hotel credit cards are specialised credit cards that offer rewards, perks, and benefits specifically tailored forfrequent flyers who prefer to stay in hotels. These cards typically earn points or miles that can be redeemed for free nights, room upgrades, complimentary amenities, and more at participating hotels within a specific hotel chain or brand like Marriott or Hilton.

Benefits of hotel credit cards

A hotel credit card can be a valuable addition to your wallet if you frequently stay at hotels affiliated with the card issuer. Here are some compelling reasons to consider getting a hotel credit card:

  • Earn hotel points: With a hotel credit card, you can earn points or miles on your everyday purchases, which can then be redeemed for hotel stays, room upgrades, or other travel-related perks. You may be able to transfer points into your preferred hotel chain's rewards program, although not necessarily at a 1 : 1 ratio.
  • Exclusive benefits: Credit card with elite hotel status mean you can benefit from complimentary late check-out, free Wi-Fi, and more.
  • Bonus offers: Lucrative sign up bonuses are quite widely available, giving you a way to boost your points balance after meeting minimum spending requirements.
  • Travel protection: Some come with free travel insurance, rental car coverage, and other travel protections that can provide peace of mind during your trips.

David Boyd, the co-founder of CreditCardCompare.com.au, shares: "My personal travel experiences were completely transformed after getting a hotel credit card. Almost instantly, those mundane business trips turned into delightful mini-vacations and, of course, family trips!"

Example use case

Imagine you're a frequent business traveller using a Hilton Honors American Express hotel credit card. Your everyday business expenses — flights, meals, even taxi rides — all land you more points. By the time your annual conference at Hilton rolls around, you've amassed enough points for a free five-night stay in an executive suite!

How hotel credit cards work

Hotel credit cards operate similarly to other rewards credit cards but focus on earning and redeeming points for hotel-related expenses. Here's how hotel credit cards typically work:

  1. Earning points: You earn points or miles on eligible purchases, with accelerated earnings on hotel stays and sometimes on specific bonus categories.
  2. Redeeming points: Points can be redeemed for free nights, room upgrades, dining credits, spa services, and other hotel-related expenses within the hotel chain's loyalty program.
  3. Elite status: Some hotel credit cards offer automatic elite status or shortcuts to achieving higher loyalty tiers, granting access to additional benefits and perks.

How to choose the right hotel credit card

Selecting the best hotel credit card for your needs requires careful consideration of various factors. Here are some key points to keep in mind while choosing a hotel credit card:

  • Hotel preferences: Consider your preferred hotel chains and locations to ensure the card's rewards align with your travel habits.
  • Annual fees: Evaluate the annual fee against the card's benefits and rewards to determine if the cost is justified by the value received.
  • Perks and benefits: Look for cards with valuable perks such as complimentary nights, elite status, travel credits, free Wi-Fi, and other travel-related benefits.
  • Earn rates: Compare the earned rates for points/miles on different types of purchases to maximise your rewards potential.
  • Sign up bonuses: Assess the sign up bonus offered by each card, as it can significantly boost your points balance in the short term.

Help choosing a hotel credit card

Craft your personalized adventure with the perfect hotel credit card, guided by expert insights.

  • FAQs

  • Pros & cons

Are hotel credit cards worth it?

Hotel credit cards can be worth it for frequent travellers who often stay at affiliated hotels. The key is to assess the card's benefits, perks, annual fees, and rewards structure to determine if the value aligns with your travel habits.

Can I use hotel points for other travel expenses?

While hotel points are primarily intended for hotel-related expenses, some hotel loyalty programs offer options to redeem points for other travel expenses such as flights, car rentals, and experiences through travel partners.

How can I maximize the benefits of a hotel credit card?

To maximise the benefits of a hotel credit card, make sure to take advantage of sign-up bonuses, elite status perks, complimentary nights, and other card-specific benefits. Also, focus on using the card for hotel stays to earn and redeem points efficiently.

What happens to my points if I cancel my hotel credit card?

If you cancel your hotel credit card, you may lose the points associated with that specific card unless you transfer them to a loyalty program or another credit card. Be sure to understand the loyalty program's policies regarding point expiration and transferability.

Do hotel credit cards affect my credit score?

Like any credit card, hotel credit cards can impact your credit score based on factors such as payment history, credit utilisation, and new credit inquiries. Responsible card usage, timely payments, and managing your credit wisely are essential to maintaining a healthy credit score.

Pros

Accumulate points towards a stay

Earn points through everyday spending and redeem them for hotel stays.

Generous sign-up bonus offers

Thousands of points are often up for grabs, significantly reducing the cost of future hotel stays and providing immediate value to new cardholders.

Additional benefits

If a card comes with elite status, you can get access to guaranteed room upgrades on arrival, dedicated concierge services, dining discounts, and more.

Flexible redemption

With options to transfer points to hotel loyalty programs or book stays directly through rewards portals, these cards offer versatility in how points can be used.

Cons

They can be pricey

The cost of holding one of these cards can be high, with premium options certainly coming with an annual fee higher than the average. Evaluate if the benefits on offer justify the cost. Will you actually use them?

Higher interest rates

Carrying a balance quickly reduces the value of the points earned since these cards typically have higher interest on purchases.

Complex rewards program terms

If you're new to rewards programs, it can be a bit of a steep learning curve. There are rules on point expiration, earning caps, and redemption restrictions to take into consideration.

Redemption restrictions

It's easier to find bookable rooms using points with some hotel chains than others. Blackout dates and limited availability can complicate your redemption plans.