6 cards that get you over $1,000 in value every year

Nov 8, 2021

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While welcome bonuses can provide tons of value from the start, you’ll want to make sure that you can justify paying the annual fee for years to come. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the six credit cards that provide tangible benefits of more than $1,000 in value every year — without factoring in the value of the current welcome offer.

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Methodology

To find cards that present $1,000-plus in value, here are the four major factors I took into consideration:

  • Annual statement credits: I considered recurring travel, dining or other lifestyle-type credits that come on the card.
  • Automatic elite status: I used TPG’s valuations of elite status if a card offers it as a cardholder benefit.
  • Quantifiable perks and benefits: I’ll only include easily quantifiable benefits that can be assigned a value.
  • Annual fee: Only cards with $1,000-plus in value after the cost of the annual fee made the cut.

Of course, this isn’t a perfect science, as many benefits can’t be assigned a clear-cut dollar value. Take, for instance, the Global Lounge Collection on The Platinum Card® from American Express. The value of this benefit will vary depending on the type of traveler you are, so I’ve excluded perks like this from my calculations. That said, if you are a frequent flyer who loves visiting Centurion Lounges, then you’ll even find more value for you than what’s listed below.

The other thing to keep in mind is that you’ll have to leverage each of these benefits to their fullest to squeeze as much value from possible, and that can involve keeping track of monthly, biannual and annual credits, so there’s a bit of legwork. That said, it can be more than worthwhile when you consider the savings.

Let’s get started.

In This Post

Cards that provide $1,000-plus in ongoing value

Card Annual fee Ongoing value (after the annual fee)
The Platinum Card® from American Express $695 (see rates and fees) $3,299
Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card $450 (see rates and fees) $3,175
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express $595 ($695 if application is received on or after Jan. 13, 2022) (see rates and fees) $2,934 (after the $595 annual fee), or $2,834 (after the $695 annual fee, starting on Jan. 13, 2022).
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card $450 (see rates and fees) $1,215
Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card $95 (see rates and fees) $1,160
IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card $89 $1,016

The information for the Hilton Honors Aspire has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

American Express Platinum

(Photo by The Points Guy)

Quantifiable benefits:

*Enrollment required for select benefits.

Ongoing value: $3,299 (after the $695 annual fee)

The Amex Platinum offers the most exhaustive list of statement credits of almost any card out there. While you likely will not use every credit, it’s still easy to get more than $1,000 in value from the card every year. Throw in other benefits like the Global Lounge Collection, the Amex Platinum Concierge and Uber VIP status and you’ve got a winning premium rewards card.

Official application link: Amex Platinum

Hilton Honors Aspire

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire card
(Photo by Clint Henderson/The Points Guy)

Quantifiable benefits:

*Enrollment required for select benefits.

Ongoing value: $3,175 (after the $450 annual fee).

The Hilton Honors Aspire is a must-have for Hilton loyalists. It comes with automatic Diamond status, getting you benefits such as space-available room upgrades, a 100% bonus on base points and breakfast. Even though all travelers may not reach the full value from Diamond status, plenty of other statement credits justify the $450 annual fee. In our calculations, we didn’t even factor in the Priority Pass lounge membership (enrollment required) and the free weekend night certificate that comes with the card (with the potential of earning another award night after spending $60,000 on the card in a calendar year).

Read our official review: Hilton Honors Aspire.

American Express Business Platinum

(Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)

Quantifiable benefits:

  • Up to $200 in annual airline incidental statement credits.*
  • Up to $400 in annual Dell statement credits for U.S. purchases.*
  • Up to $360 in annual Indeed statement credits.*
  • Up to $150 in annual Adobe statement credits.*
  • Up to $120 in annual U.S. wireless telephone services statement credits.*
  • Up to $179 in annual Clear membership statement credits.*
  • Up to $100 for Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee every four years — so we’ll calculate this as $25 per year.
  • Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold elite status ($840 value, according to TPG valuations).*
  • Complimentary Hilton Honors Gold elite status ($1,255 value, according to TPG valuations).*

*Enrollment required for select benefits.

Ongoing value: $2,934 (after the $595 annual fee), or $2,834 (after the $695 annual fee, starting on Jan. 13, 2022).

If you’re a business owner, the Amex Business Platinum offers an assortment of statement credits intended to help offset your business operating expenses. With a few travel-related benefits — not to mention Centurion Lounge access — you shouldn’t have trouble finding several thousand dollars of value, even after the annual fee increases to $695 in early 2022.

Official application link: Amex Business Platinum

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Amex

(Photo by Eden Batki/The Points Guy)

Quantifiable benefits:

  • Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold elite status ($840 value, according to TPG valuations).
  • Up to $300 annual statement credit on eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program.*
  • Up to $100 Marriott on-property credit.*
  • Annual free night award — up to 50,000 points ($400 value) for use at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program.
  • Up-to-$100 Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit every four years — so we’ll calculate this as $25 per year.

*Enrollment required for select benefits.

Ongoing value: $1,215.

With thousands of Marriott Bonvoy properties to choose from, most travelers should be able to maximize the value of the various credits and the free night award found on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card. With automatic Gold elite status and a pathway to Platinum elite status, this is the card you’ll want if you’re looking for hotel benefits.

Official application link: Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Amex

Hilton Honors Surpass

Quantifiable benefits:

  • Complimentary Hilton Gold elite status ($1,255 value, according to TPG valuations).

Ongoing value: $1,160

While the only quantifiable benefit of the Hilton Honors Surpass is the complimentary Gold elite status, it’s still an impressive offering considering the low $95 annual fee. It’s also worth noting that the card comes with 10 annual Priority Pass lounge visits and the opportunity to earn a free weekend night certificate by spending $15,000 on the card in a calendar year.

Official application link: Hilton Honors Surpass

IHG Rewards Club Premier

(Photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy)

Quantifiable benefits:

  • Complimentary IHG Platinum elite status ($880 value, according to TPG valuations).
  • Anniversary reward night — up to 40,000 points ($200 value).
  • Up-to-$100 Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit every four years — so we’ll calculate this as $25 per year.

Ongoing value: $1,016 (after the $89 annual fee)

While IHG tends to fly under the radar compared to other popular hotel chains, there’s still tons of value to be found with this brand, and this card. With an $89 annual fee, automatic Platinum elite status, an anniversary reward night and more, it’s easy to extract more than $1,000 in value from the IHG Rewards Club Premier card.

Official application link: IHG Rewards Club Premier

Bottom line

If your biggest concern is finding value beyond the first year, refer back to this list when applying for your next credit card. The options above come with substantial benefits that most cardholders can maximize to lock in a tremendous amount of value every year.

As a follow-up, be sure to read our story on the 10 credit cards that offer more than $1,000 in first-year value if you’re looking to consider the welcome bonus in these estimates.

Official application link: Amex Platinum.
Official application link: Hilton Honors Aspire.
Official application link: Amex Business Platinum.
Official application link: Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant.
Official application link: Hilton Honors Surpass.
Official application link: IHG Rewards Club Premier

For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum, click here.
For rates and fees of the Hilton Aspire, click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex Business Platinum, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant, click here.
For rates and fees of the Hilton Honors Surpass, click here

Featured photo by The Points Guy.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants in the first three months of card membership.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
  • Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

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.