Travel isn't always cheap – sometimes it's free! At least that can be the case for those who leverage the vast network of miles and points programs out there. Credit cards, frequent flyer programs and hotel loyalty clubs allow travelers to earn free or discounted travel, sometimes just with your everyday spending on gas, groceries and other purchases.
10Best teamed up with a panel of miles-and-points experts to nominate the best programs for American travelers – the credit cards, frequent flyer programs and hotel loyalty programs with the best earning potential, flexibility, extra perks and ease of redemption.
Click on each category below to vote:
Best Airline Co-Branded Credit Card
These cards offer perks like free checked bags, priority boarding and the chance to earn free flights — Photo courtesy of iStock / 279photo
Free flights, no baggage fees, upgrades and priority boarding – these are among the rewards for spending on a good airline co-branded credit card. These 20 nominees represent the best on the market for American travelers, based on perks, redemption rates and other benefits.
Best Frequent Flyer Program
Loyalty can yield big savings on airfare — Photo courtesy of iStock / izusek
Savvy frequent travelers know that loyalty to a specific airline can translate to big savings on flights and upgrades. But not all loyalty programs are created equal. These programs offer plenty of ways to earn and redeem miles, great coverage and plenty of flight options when it comes time to book that free trip.
Best Hotel Loyalty Program
Earn free nights and other benefits with these hotel loyalty programs — Photo courtesy of iStock / Asia-Pacific Images Studio
Just about every hotel brand offers a loyalty program for guests, where frequent stays are rewarded with discounted or free nights and a host of other perks (upgrades, free Wi-Fi, late checkout). With so many programs to choose from, how do you pick the right one to save big bucks on travel?
Best Rewards Credit Card
Earn and redeem points on just about anything with a solid rewards credit card — Photo courtesy of iStock / South_agency
A solid rewards credit card offers users greater flexibility on how they earn and redeem points – no need to fly the same airline, stay in the same hotel chain or rent from the same car company on every trip.
Best Travel & Hotel Co-Branded Credit Card
These hotel and travel co-branded credit cards reward you for everyday purchases — Photo courtesy of iStock / Hispanolistic
Free nights, priority check-in, room upgrades – these are among the rewards for spending on a good hotel or travel co-branded credit card.
Remember, you can vote once per day in each category. The 10 nominees with the most votes in each category will be announced on 10Best.com on Friday, October 18.