Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card by AmEx

Best Hotel Rewards

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Pros
  • Earn rewards for your love of a comfortable hotel stay
  • Rack up points quick: 5x at participating Starwood hotels, and 2x at Marriott Hotels
  • Flexible redemption options for flights and hotel stays, with no foreign transaction fees
Cons

If you want to nitpick (and we certainly do), the signup bonus is simply not as generous as many of the others on this list of the best rewards credit cards. Because it's a Starwood card, you're limited to redeeming hotel rewards within this chain.

Highlights
  • Earn 25,000 Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 Starpoints® for each dollar of eligible purchases spent at participating SPG® & Marriott Rewards® hotels. Earn 1 Starpoint for all other purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on International purchases.
  • Redeem Starpoints® at over 1,300 participating hotels and resorts in over 100 countries and for flights on more than 150 airlines with SPG flights, all with no blackout dates.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Planning a road trip? Rent your car, fill up your tank, book your hotel, and pay for it with your American Express® Card.
  • Terms Apply.
Details

Application Process: Online, with a decision in as little as 30 seconds. That's 30 whole seconds faster than most of the other online credit card applications on this list!

Fees: There's a $95 annual fee, which is graciously waived the first year. The Points Guy recommends holding on to the card, even after you have to start paying for it.

There's no foreign transaction fee - sweet! You also don't have to pay an overlimit fee if you go over your credit line (but please try not to!). 

Late payments and returned checks/ACH withdrawals each have a fee of up to $38.     

APR: No introductory offers. Expect a variable APR between 16.24% to 20.24% depending on your credit history.

RewardsPoints earned through the credit card and SPG loyalty program can also be exchanged for loyalty rewards at most airlines in addition to free hotel room stays. There are no blackout dates for qualifying standard hotel rooms, but you may get hit with blackouts if you try to book high-end rooms or airline seats during peak periods.

Starwood stays are ideal if you want to rack up points; you get 5 Starpoints for every dollar you spend on an approved Starwood stay. A reservation at a participating Marriott Rewards hotel scores you 2 Starpoints per dollar spent. All other qualifying purchases have a reward rate of 1 Starpoint for every dollar spent.

Starpoints typically have a cash value that falls between $0.03 and $0.05 when you redeem them for qualifying rewards.

Bonus Offers: Receive 30,000 bonus points when you use your credit card to spend $3,000 within the first 3 months of account opening. If you don't see your bonus points right away, don't panic - it takes up to 12 weeks for them to appear on your statement.

Card attributes
  • Variable APR
    16.49% - 20.49%
  • Cash Advance APR
    26.49%
  • Bonus Offers
    Earn 25,000 Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Terms Apply.
  • Rewards Rate
    1.0%
  • Annual Fee
    $0 for the first year, then $95
  • Intro APR
    n/a
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