Which Credit Card Is Best for Miscellaneous Travel Expenses?

Sep 14, 2014

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TPG reader Gisele emailed me to ask:

“I’m organizing a trip to Italy in the spring and would like to know if there’s a good credit card for less obvious travel expenses, such as Eurorail passes, museum tickets, tour buses, etc. I also would like to use Airbnb instead of a hotel. Do you have any suggestions for me?”

Often when points and miles enthusiasts plan trips, we focus on the most prominent costs: getting award tickets, getting business class, using hotel points, etc. However, there are a lot of extra expenses associated with travel that can add up quickly even if you get your flight and hotel for free, especially in Europe, where the currency exchange rate isn’t in our favor right now. Expenses like train or bus tickets, tours, museum tickets, etc., all have to be factored into your budget.

The flight to Italy isn't your only expense...tour buses, train tickets, museum entrances and more all add up. Shutterstock.
Flights and hotels aren’t your only expenses when traveling. (Image courtesy of Shutterstock)

TPG reader Gisele is planning a trip to Italy having clearly considered all these expenses, and would like to know what credit card could cover all these extras, including Airbnb rentals.

I think there are two obvious choices out there for anyone looking to cover general travel expenses: the first is the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard, which has a 40,000 mile sign-up bonus after you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days. It offers double miles on all purchases and a 10% rebate on miles when you redeem for travel expenses. It also has chip and pin capability and no foreign transaction fees, making it a great option for European travel.

Another option is the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, which also offers a sign-up bonus of 40,000 miles (again, after spending $3,000 in the first three months) and has no foreign transaction fees.

Those are probably my top two recommendations, but there are several others.

If you have any other questions, please tweet me @thepointsguy, message me on Facebook, or send me an email at info@thepointsguy.com.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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