Travel credit cards provide cardholders with plenty of opportunities to learn how to travel for free. The Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard® is one of them, giving you extra flexibility in how you redeem your rewards.
But every credit card has its own terms and conditions for using rewards points and miles. So, it’s important to know how to maximize your rewards and what your options are for redemption as soon as possible.
How to maximize rewards with the Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard®
The Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard® (also called the Barclaycard Arrival Plus®) offers great rewards on every purchase you make, plus a large sign-up bonus when you just start out.
You’ll earn 60,000 miles after you spend $5,000 with the card during the first 90 days after you get approved. You’ll also receive 2 miles per dollar spent on every purchase you make.
It’s important, therefore, to use the card whenever you can. Use it instead of your debit card for in-store and online purchases. Also, look at your recurring expenses to see if you can switch your payment account from your checking account to your credit card.
Just keep in mind that some might charge a convenience fee to pay by credit card. In most cases, it’s generally not worth it because the fee is higher than what you’d earn in rewards.
The more you use your card, the more miles you earn. And thankfully, the card makes it easy to rack up miles fast.
How to travel for free with your Arrival miles
Travel credit cards can vary wildly in how they allow you to use your rewards. Some require you to use them with a specific airline or hotel brand, and others give you the option to book a trip directly with your miles.
With the Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard®, you get a lot more flexibility. Here’s how it works:
- Use the card to book just about any type of travel
- Request to use miles to get a statement credit against the travel purchase
The redemption rate is 1 cent per mile, so the 60,000-mile sign-up bonus is worth $600 in free travel. Barclays considers all of the following to be travel-related for redemption purposes:
- Car rental agencies
- Cruise lines
- Travel agencies
- Discount travel sites
- Your annual fee
If you need to book your trip now but don’t have enough miles to get a full statement credit, don’t worry. You’ll have 120 days from the date of the transaction to get a statement credit. That’s a full four months, giving you plenty of time to rack up rewards.
What’s more, when you actually do redeem your rewards, Barclays will give you 5% of your miles back to use for your next trip. So, if you use 60,000 miles to cover a $600 flight ticket, you’ll receive 3,000 miles back.
Take advantage of the flexibility
Because the Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard® doesn’t require that you use any one website or company to book your travel, shop around to make sure you’re always getting the lowest price.
In other words, staying loyal to one airline or hotel will net you more rewards with that one brand. But you may miss out on savings by not comparing prices with other brands. This card makes it possible to do that without sacrificing your redemption options.
While the Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard® can help you book free travel, it’s important to recognize that no trip will ever be completely free.
Whether it’s groceries, eating out, or other everyday purchases you might make on your trip, you can’t redeem your Arrival miles for everything.
There are, of course, ways to get seemingly non-travel purchases to become eligible for redemption.
If you buy tickets to a theme park or other attractions through a discount travel website, for instance, they may be categories as travel instead of entertainment.
But you can’t do that with everything.
Also, the card has a minimum redemption amount of 10,000 miles. So, you’re on the hook for any travel-related purchases you make with the card that are worth less than $100.
That said, your biggest travel purchases, such as airfare, hotel stays, or a cruise, are fair game. As you use your Barclays Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard® and earn rewards, have a plan in mind for how you’re going to use your miles.
Then, use your credit card every day to make sure you earn enough to maximize your rewards.
Editorial Note: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.
This article was last updated September 25, 2018 but some terms and conditions may have changed or are no longer available. For the most accurate and up to date information please consult the terms and conditions found on the issuer website.