Skip to content

5 things you should know about Spirit's revamped credit card lineup

Jan. 22, 2021
6 min read
Spirit Airlines Airbus A321
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Often dismissed as the airline-of-last-resort, Spirit has been making a recent comeback of sorts.

From improved on-time performance to introducing more comfortable seats and now, a completely relaunched loyalty program, the carrier known for its loud yellow liveries and ultra-low-cost fares is generating some buzz these days.

And the recent unveiling of a revamped Free Spirit loyalty program includes not one, but two credit cards issued by Bank of America. Besides introducing a new no-annual-fee product, there are changes aplenty to the existing card including fresh perks and higher sign-up bonuses (and slick-looking card art to boot).

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our free daily newsletter.

If you're a Spirit Airlines enthusiast, here are five things to know about the airline's two cobranded credit cards.

Not one, but two card options

Before the relaunch of the Free Spirit program, Spirit offered one credit card: A $59-annual-fee Bank of America product with one of the best perks being exclusive access to award flights from 2,500 miles (miles are now called points under the new loyalty program).

Now, that 2,500-point award availability is open to every member of Free Spirit, not just cobranded cardholders. But there are still decent benefits to be had with either of these card options. Spirit is offering two cards to cater to a wider audience with varying levels of perks.

The revamped Free Spirit® Travel More World Elite Mastercard® now has a $79 annual fee (up from $59) while the Free Spirit® Travel Mastercard® has no annual fee.

The information for the Free Spirit Travel More and Free Spirit Travel card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Related: Spirit relaunched its loyalty program with cheap award flights and new cobranded cards

Solid sign-up bonus and first-year waived fee

With the no-annual-fee Free Spirit Travel Mastercard, you can earn 10,000 bonus points after spending at least $500 on purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.

The World Elite Mastercard variant, with a $79 annual fee, has its first-year fee waived. You'll also earn 40,000 bonus points along with a $100 Companion Flight Voucher​ after spending at least $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.

What isn't fully known yet is the value of each Spirit point. With Spirit's move to a revenue-based award program, there is no longer an award chart. However, initial tests reveal that award flights do indeed start at 2,500 points across a wide number of dates and routes.

As would be expected in a revenue-based model, the cheapest flights to book with cash in that $20-$30 range each direction of travel are the ones most likely to cost just 2,500 points plus applicable taxes and fees.

Related: Is the Spirit Airlines Big Front Seat Worth It?

Middling bonus categories

(Photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy)

Neither Spirit credit card has particularly exciting bonus categories. As with most airline credit cards, the biggest bonus multiplier comes from spending directly with the airline.

The no-annual-fee Free Spirit Travel Mastercard earns 2x on Spirit purchases and just 1x on everything else. The $79-per-year World Elite version comes with a 3x bonus on all things Spirit, 2x on dining and restaurants and 1x on everything else.

While we don't yet have set valuations for a Free Spirit point, on a numerical basis, these bonuses are about on par or slightly below compared to many other cobranded airline cards.

Related: Everything to know about flying Spirit Airlines

Above-average cardholder perks

(Photo by The Points Guy)

There are some notable perks for occasional Spirit flyers on both of these cards, but the World Elite benefits are where things really start to shine. Both cards have the following extras:

  • Spirit points will not expire for cardholders, even without activity
  • Cardholders with either card can create points pooling for themselves and up to eight others
  • Zone 2 boarding on all flights
  • A dedicated customer service phone line for elites and cardholders called Yellow Glove Concierge
  • 25% rebate on inflight food and beverage purchases when charged to the cards
  • No foreign transaction fees

Under the new Free Spirit program, points will expire in 12 months if there's no account activity (much improved over the previous three months). However, cardholders have no expiration date at all as long as they keep their card account open.

Creating a points pool is another neat benefit that is only for Spirit cardholders and elite members. (Others without status or a cobranded card can still join a points pool.) Finally, the special phone line is another nice touch, and unique to Spirit.

Related: World Elite vs. World Mastercard: Benefits and value

Perks specific to the Free Spirit Travel More World Elite Mastercard include:

  • Redemption fee waiver (typically $50 within 28 days of departure)
  • Earn 1 Status Qualifying Point (SQP) toward status for every $10 spent
  • Earn a $100 companion voucher flight each year with $5,000 in spending

Related: Frequent flyer perks that travelers like the most

You can earn elite status without flying

As noted with the benefits above, flyers with the $79-per-year Free Spirit Travel More World Elite Mastercard can earn additional SQPs at a rate of 1 SQP per $10 charged to the card.

Spirit requires 2,000 SQPs for Silver and 5,000 SQPs for Gold which means $20,000 in annual charges gets you Silver and $50,000 in charges gets you Gold, assuming no other Spirit spending.

(Photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy)

Silver status includes perks such as free seat selection at check-in, shortcut boarding, and same-day standby. Meanwhile, Gold includes very un-Spirit-like benefits such as free seat selection at booking, a free drink and snack on board, free first checked bag, and a free carry-on.

That's a lot of money to spend on a Spirit credit card and the opportunity cost is high, but know that it is possible to reach elite status simply by spending on a Spirit card.

Related: The best credit cards to jump-start elite status in 2021

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

Top offers from our partners

How we chose these cards

Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
See all best card offers

TPG featured card

Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023