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Bank of America Travel Rewards Visa Credit Card Review

Bank of America Travel Rewards Visa Credit Card Review

*Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

This article was last updated Jul 17, 2020. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

If you’re in the market for a travel rewards credit card, but don’t want to deal with complicated rewards structures or spending limits, you should look at the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card. It offers a flat rewards rate of 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don't expire.

In addition to using your rewards to book trips, you can redeem points for statement credits to pay for flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars or baggage fees.

We break down the pros and cons of the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card, and show how it compares to the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer – which also offers a flat rewards rate on every purchase.

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card pros

Sign-up bonus. Cardholders earn 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.

Rewards rates. Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card purchases earn 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don't expire

If you are a Bank of America® Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25% to 75% more points on every purchase – meaning, you can earn up to 2.62 points per dollar on all purchases. But keep in mind, to earn the highest rewards rate, you need to have Preferred Rewards Platinum Honors status, which requires a three-month average combined balance of $100,000 or more in qualifying Bank of America banking accounts and/or Merrill Investment accounts.

Intro APR on purchases. If you want to finance a large purchase, such as a vacation, and pay it off over time, you can do so interest-free for a year with the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card. The card offers a 0% Introductory APR on purchases for 12 billing cycles. After that, a 16.49% - 24.49% Variable APR on purchases applies to any remaining balance.

Additional Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card benefits:

  • $0 annual fee.
  • Foreign transaction fees: None.
  • $0 liability guarantee for fraudulent transactions.
  • Overdraft protection when you link your eligible Bank of America checking account to your credit card.
  • Free access to your FICO Score when you opt-in.

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card cons

Mediocre benefits. While the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card offers some helpful benefits, such as overdraft protection, it lacks some popular travel benefits, like trip cancellation insurance, baggage insurance, car rental collision damage waiver and trip delay reimbursement.

No bonus earning categories. The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card offers a decent flat rewards rate on general purchase; however, there are other travel rewards cards available that offer up to 5 points per dollar on flights and up to 12 points per dollar on hotel stays.

Just know, these cards typically charge annual fees of $95 or more.

Read: Best Travel Credit Cards

Compare it to the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card and the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer may seem like different cards (after all, one earns points and the other cash back), but they are nonetheless comparable.

The Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer lets you earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases. This is a better rate than the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card, unless you’re a Preferred Rewards customer in the Platinum or Platinum Honors tiers.

Both cards’ rewards can be redeemed for a statement credit, cash back or gift cards. But a key difference is you have more flexibility with the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer since the statement credit can be applied to all purchases. By contrast, the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card restricts your statement credit to eligible travel purchases.

See how the two cards stack up side by side below.

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card vs. Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

 Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit cardCiti® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer
Annual fee$0$0
Sign-up bonus25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchasesNo bonus
Rewards rate1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don't expireEarn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases.
Purchase intro rate0% Introductory APR on purchases for 12 billing cyclesN/A
Ongoing purchase APR16.49% - 24.49% Variable APR on purchases 13.99% – 23.99% (variable)
Balance transfer intro rateN/A0% for 18 months on balance transfers
Ongoing balance transfer APR16.49% - 24.49% Variable APR on balance transfers13.99% – 23.99% (variable)
Foreign Transaction feesNone3%

Unlike the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer not offer an introductory APR on purchases.

However, if you have a large amount of high interest debt that you want to transfer, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer is more ideal, since it offers an intro APR of  0% for 18 months on balance transfers, then an APR of 13.99% – 23.99% (variable). Just know, the card charges a balance transfer fee of 3% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.

Read our Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer review.

Which credit card is right for me?

Both the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card and Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer are solid choices if you want a simple approach to earning rewards. But if you plan to carry a balance or travel abroad, the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card may be a better choice, since it offers an intro APR on purchases and does not charge additional fees to use the card outside of the U.S.

But if you prefer earning cashback rewards over points and want more flexibility in how you can use your rewards, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer may be a better fit. Plus, the card offers one of the longest intro APRs on balance transfers currently available.

Read: Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards


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