Travel can be expensive, but those availing themselves of the best loyalty and rewards programs are offered plenty of opportunities to earn free or discounted travel and hotel rooms through everyday spending on gas, groceries, and other purchases.
To find the best ones, we invited a panel of travel and miles-and-points experts to share their favorite programs for American travelers — the credit cards, frequent flyer programs, and hotel loyalty programs with the best earning potential, flexibility, extra perks, and ease of redemption. Then, our readers voted for their favorites to help crown the winners.
Click on each category below to see the full winners list:
Best Airline Credit Card: Allegiant World Mastercard
Allegiant World Mastercard wins Best Airline Credit Card for five years running — Photo courtesy of Allegiant
The Allegiant World Mastercard earns three points per dollar on Allegiant purchases (including air, hotel, and car rental), two points per dollar on qualified dining, and a point per dollar on everything else. Other perks include a 15,000-point sign-up bonus (after qualifying purchases), BOGO airfare on qualifying vacation packages, priority boarding, and a free beverage on every flight.
Full list of winners: Best Airline Credit Card »
Best Frequent Flyer Program: Avianca Airlines LifeMiles
When it comes to rewarding frequent flyers, the flexibility of Avianca Airlines LifeMiles can’t be beat — Photo courtesy of Avianca Airlines / LifeMiles
Avianca’s LifeMiles program offers some of the best redemption rates for Star Alliance award miles, and you can transfer points from American Express, Citi ThankYou Rewards, Capital One, and Marriott Bonvoy. The airline often sells LifeMiles at a discount, an attractive option if you’re just short of an award ticket.
Full list of winners: Best Frequent Flyer Program »
Best Hotel Loyalty Program: Wyndham Rewards
Wyndham Rewards enjoys sixth consecutive win for Best Hotel Loyalty Program — Photo courtesy of Wyndham Hotels & Resorts
The Wyndham Rewards program honors stays at more than 50,000 participating hotels, vacation clubs, and resorts worldwide. These include popular brands like Wyndham, La Quinta, Days Inn, Super 8, and Ramada. Points can also be redeemed for gift cards, tours, sporting events, and more.
Full list of winners: Best Hotel Loyalty Program »
Best Rewards Credit Card: Quicksilver from Capital One
Keep your rewards simple and straightforward with Quicksilver from Capital One — Photo courtesy of Capital One
Quicksilver offers unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases, a $200 sign-up bonus, no annual fees, and no foreign transaction fees. It’s a great low-fee, low-maintenance option for travelers who value simplicity.
Full list of winners: Best Rewards Credit Card »
Best Travel & Hotel Credit Card: Wyndham Rewards Earner Card
Wyndham Rewards Earner Card wins Best Travel & Hotel Credit Card for second year in a row — Photo courtesy of Wyndham Rewards
For fans of the Wyndham brand, carrying a Wyndham Rewards Earner Card offers great rewards and value. There is the sign-up bonus of 45,000 points, plus points on everyday purchases to redeem on free hotel nights, gift cards, and more. Cardholders also enjoy automatic Gold status, providing perks like preferred room selection and late check-out. This card also has no annual fee.
Full list of winners: Best Travel & Hotel Credit Card »
Congratulations to all these winners! Remember to visit 10best.com daily to vote in our other Readers’ Choice contests.