Credit cards with bonuses for meeting annual spending requirements

Jan 5, 2021

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Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with new information.

Credit card issuers are in the business of acquiring long-term customers. In an age when large sign-up bonuses are driving acquisition costs up and customers keep shifting products, banks are trying to incentivize cardholders to not only keep their products for years but also to utilize them on a recurring basis.

One of the many tools to drive utilization is an annual spend bonus. Let’s look at cards that give a variety of rewards after you meet set annual spend thresholds.

Related: 10 easiest credit card sign-up bonuses to earn

Annual spend bonuses in this article do not include welcome bonuses, welcome offers, annual caps on bonus spend categories or annual renewal bonuses. Unless otherwise noted, each year refers to a calendar year.

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In This Post

Free hotel nights

Several Hilton Amex cards offer free weekend night awards for meeting annual spending thresholds. (Photo of the Hilton Hawaiian Village by Melanie Lieberman/ The Points Guy)

Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card ($95 annual fee; see rates & fees) —  Spend $15,000 in a calendar year and earn a free weekend night certificate. Terms apply.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire® Card ($450 annual fee; see rates and fees) — Spend $60,000 in a calendar year and receive a free weekend night certificate, in addition to the one complimentary weekend night award you get each year after your account renewal. Terms apply.

Hilton Honors American Express Business Card ($95 annual fee; see rates and fees) — Spend $15,000 in a calendar year and earn a free weekend night certificate. Spend $60,000 total in a calendar year and earn a second free night certificate. Terms apply.

Radisson Rewards cobranded cards (up to a $70 annual fee) — The Premier Visa, Visa Signature, Visa and Business Visa Radisson Rewards cards all offer a free night at any Radisson property in the U.S. for every $10,000 spent on a card, up to three free nights per year. Free nights are awarded when you renew your card. The information for the Premier Visa, Visa Signature, Visa and Business Visa Radisson Rewards cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card ($125 annual fee; see rates and fees) — Spend $60,000 in a calendar year and earn a free night reward at any participating Marriott property that costs up to 35,000 points.

World of Hyatt Credit Card ($95 annual fee) — Earn a free night at any Category 1-4 property after spending $15,000 during your cardmember year.

The information for the Hilton Aspire Amex 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.

Complimentary elite status

Use your Mosaic status to snag an upgrade to a JetBlue Mint seat. (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

Hilton Honors American Express Card (no annual fee) — Spend $20,000 in a calendar year and receive an upgrade to Hilton Honors Gold status. Terms apply. Enrollment required for select benefits.

Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card ($95 annual fee) — Spend $40,000 and receive an upgrade to Hilton Honors Diamond status. Terms apply.

Hilton Honors American Express Business Card ($95 annual fee) — Spend $40,000 in a calendar year and receive an upgrade to Hilton Honors Diamond status. Terms apply.

JetBlue Plus Card and the JetBlue Business Card ($99 annual fee) — Spend $50,000 and earn Mosaic status good through the end of the following calendar year. The information for the JetBlue Plus and the JetBlue Business cards has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card ($95 annual fee) — Spend $35,000 in your cardmember year and earn Gold elite status through the end of the following calendar year.

Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card ($395 annual fee; no longer available to new applicants) — Spend $75,000 in a cardmember year and earn Marriott Bonvoy Platinum status.

World of Hyatt Credit Card — Earn two qualifying nights towards status for every $5,000 spent on the card with no limit to the number of nights available to earn.

Elite-qualifying dollars, points and miles

Amtrak Guest Rewards World Mastercard ($79 annual fee) — Earn 1,000 tier qualifying points for every $5,000 in spend, up to 4,000 TQPs per year. The information for the Amtrak Guest Rewards World Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Silver Mastercard ($199 annual fee) — Earn 5,000 elite qualifying miles for every $20,000 you spend on the card, up to 10,000 EQMs per year. Earn 3,000 elite qualifying dollars after spending $50,000 in a calendar year. The information for the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Silver Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Business Mastercard ($95 annual fee) — Earn 3,000 EQDs after spending $25,000. Spend $30,000 and earn a companion certificate good for one guest at $99 plus taxes and fees. The information for the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Business Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® ($450 annual fee) — Spend $40,000 within the calendar year and earn 10,000 Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs).

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card ($550 annual fee; see rates and fees) and the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card ($550 annual fee; see rates and fees) — Spend $30,000 in a calendar year and receive 15,000 Medallion® Qualifying Miles. Spend an additional $30,000 and receive another 15,000 MQMs. Earn an additional 15,000 bonus MQMs after spending both $90,000 and $120,000 in a calendar year. Also, spend $25,000 and qualify for Platinum, Gold and Silver Medallion status if you’ve earned the required MQMs or Medallion qualification segments but not the required Medallion qualification dollars. Or, spend $250,000 and qualify for Diamond Medallion status if you’ve earned the required MQMs or MQSs but not the MQDs.

Expedia® Rewards Card from Citi (no annual fee) — Earn one elite qualifying night toward Expedia Rewards Gold status for every $2,500 spent. The information for the Expedia Rewards 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.

Frontier Airlines World Mastercard ($79 annual fee) — Earn one EQM per dollar spent on the card, with no cap to EQMs allowed to be earned. Spend your way to Elite 20k, Elite 50k and Elite 100k status. The information for the Frontier Airlines World Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card ($250 annual fee; see rates and fees) — Spend $25,000 and receive 10,000 MQMs. Spend an additional $25,000 and receive another 10,000 MQMs. Also, spend $25,000 and qualify for Platinum, Gold and Silver Medallion status if you’ve earned the required MQMs or MQSs but not the required MQDs. Or, spend $250,000 and qualify for Diamond Medallion status if you’ve earned the required MQMs or MQSs but not the MQDs.

Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 MAX
Work toward Southwest elite status by spending on several of its cobranded cards. (Photo by Max Prosperi)

Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card ($149 annual fee), Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card ($99 annual fee) and the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card ($99 annual fee) — Earn 1,500 tier qualifying points for each $10,000 in purchases up to $100,000 in purchases annually, which equals 15,000 TQPs.

Bonus points, miles and more

AT&T Access More ($95 annual fee) — Not available for new sign-ups, but if you hold the card you can earn 10,000 bonus ThankYou points after spending $10,000.

Barclaycard Arrival Premier — The card is no longer available for sign-ups, but if you hold it you’ll earn 15,000 bonus miles when you use your card to spend $15,000 in a cardmember year and an additional 10,000 bonus miles each year that you spend another $10,000, for a total of 25,000 bonus miles after $25,000 of spending.

Best Western Rewards Premium Mastercard ($89 annual fee) — Spend $5,000 in a cardmember year and earn 40,000 bonus points. The information for the Best Western Rewards Premium Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Choice Privileges Visa Signature Card (no annual fee) — Spend $10,000 and earn 8,000 bonus points on your card anniversary. The information for the Choice Privileges Visa Signature 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.

Diamond Resorts International Mastercard (no annual fee) — Earn 500 bonus Diamond Plus points for every $2,000 spent, up to a maximum of 5,000 bonus points, for as long as you remain a cardmember. Timeshare down payments do not count toward eligible spend. The information for the Diamond Resorts 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.

Expedia Rewards Voyager Card from Citi ($95 annual fee) — Spend $10,000 and earn 5,000 Expedia Rewards bonus points at renewal. The information for the Expedia Rewards Voyager 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.

Hawaiian Airlines
Earn bonus Hawaiian Airlines miles with the cobranded business credit card. (Photo courtesy of Eric Salard via Flickr)

Hawaiian Airlines Business Mastercard ($99 annual fee) — Earn 20,000 bonus miles after spending $50,000-$99,999 or earn 40,000 after spending $100,000 or more on purchases during your card membership year. The information for the Hawaiian Airlines Business 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.

IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card ($89 annual fee; waived for the first year) — Earn 10,000 bonus points after you spend $20,000 on purchases and make one additional purchase each account anniversary year.

SKYPASS Select Visa Signature Credit Card ($450 annual fee) — Spend $35,000 and earn 10,000 bonus miles at renewal. The information for the SKYPASS Select Visa 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.

Spirit Airlines World Mastercard ($59 annual fee, waived the first year) — Spend $10,000 and earn 5,000 bonus miles. The information for the Spirit Airlines World 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.

Virgin Atlantic World Elite Mastercard ($90 annual fee) — Spend $15,000 dollars in your cardmember year and earn 7,500 anniversary miles. Spend $25,000 in a cardmember year and earn an additional 7,500 anniversary miles. The information for the Virgin Atlantic World Elite 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.

Airline companion tickets

Earn a companion ticket by spending $30,000 on the British Airways Visa Signature Card. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

Aer Lingus Visa Signature Card ($95 annual fee) — Spend $30,000 and earn an economy companion ticket.

Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card ($75 annual fee) — Earn a sign-up bonus of 50,000 bonus miles plus Alaska’s Famous Companion Fare from $121 ($99 fare plus taxes and fees from just $22) after spending $2,000 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening. The certificate can be used to bring a companion on a paid Alaska fare from $121 ($99 fare plus taxes and fees from $22).

Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Silver Mastercard ($199 annual fee) — Earn a companion certificate good for up to two guests at $99 each, issued annually after your account anniversary when you spend $20,000 or more in purchases (taxes and fees apply). The information for the AAdvantage Aviator Silver 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.

British Airways Visa Signature Card ($95 annual fee) — Current offer: 100,000 bonus Avios after you spend $5,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.

CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® ($99 annual fee, waived the first year) — Spend $30,000 during the card membership year and renew your account to earn a $99 domestic economy companion certificate. (Account must remain open for at least 45 days after anniversary date.) The information for the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select 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.

Virgin Atlantic World Elite Mastercard ($90 annual fee) — Spend $25,000 and earn a companion reward when you redeem Flying Club miles for an award ticket, good for two years.

Travel credits, discounts and other benefits

Avianca Vuela Visa Card ($149 annual fee) — Spend $12,000 and earn a 50% discount on an award ticket redeemed for travel to Central America or Colombia from the United States. Spend another $12,000 and earn a second 50% discount. The information for the Avianca Vuela 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.

Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® ($99 annual fee, waived the first year)— Spend $20,000 or more during the card membership year and renew your card to earn a $125 American Airlines flight discount. The information for the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite 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.   

Delta Sky Club ATL Terminal B
Some cards offer other benefits such as statement credits toward lounge membership. (Photo of Delta’s flagship Terminal B Sky Club in Atlanta courtesy of Darren Murph/The Points Guy)

Crystal Visa Infinite Card ($400 annual fee) — Spend $50,000 and be reimbursed for up to $550 in airline lounge access passes or an annual airline lounge membership. The information for the Crystal Visa Infinite 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.

Iberia Plus Visa Signature Card ($95 annual fee) — Spend $30,000 and earn a $1,000 discount voucher toward two tickets on the same flight.

Merrill+ Visa Signature Card (no annual fee) — Spend $50,000 and earn a $200 travel credit or a one-year Delta Sky Club executive membership. The information for the Merrill+ Visa Signature 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.

Southwest cobranded cards — $125,000 in annual spend (1x points on all purchases for 125,000 points) on any combination of these cards, as long as they are all tied to the same Rapid Rewards account, will result in a Companion Pass.

U.S. Bank Flexperks® Business Travel Rewards Card ($55 annual fee; not available to new applicants) — Spend $24,000 and receive a credit for the $55 annual fee. The information for the U.S. Bank Flexperks Business Travel Rewards 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.

Wells Fargo Visa Signature® card (no annual fee) — Spend $50,000 and Go Far Rewards become worth 1.75 cents per point when redeemed towards airfare purchases. The information for the Wells Fargo Visa Signature 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.

Bottom Line

Given the concerted effort of banks to retain customers and their spending, the above bonuses are pretty dynamic and I expect routine changes. Be sure to go back to your card’s benefits guide or a card issuer representative to confirm any of the above information before deciding to place thousands of dollars in spend on your card.

I also recommend making an Outlook or Google Calendar with notifications to buzz yourself a few times throughout the year as a reminder for any of the annual bonuses you may be able to obtain.

Additional reporting by Carissa Rawson.

For rates and fees of the Hilton Surpass Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Hilton Aspire Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Hilton Business Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Hilton Amex Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles Reserve Business Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Business Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Amex Bonvoy Business Card, click here

 

Featured photo by anyaberkut/Getty Images.

Updated on 9/08/21

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card

Earn 2X points on Southwest purchases and 1X point on all other purchases. This card also comes with an annual $75 Southwest travel credit.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 40,000 points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, earn 3X points on dining, including takeout and eligible delivery services, for the first year.
  • 7,500 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary each year.
  • $75 Southwest® travel credit each year.
  • 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
  • 20% back on in-flight drinks and WiFi.
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases.
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
Regular APR
15.99% - 22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$149
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

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.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.