A good credit card can be more than just a way to pay the bills. When used responsibly, the right card can make your travels even better, giving you extra perks and additional security. When finding the best travel credit card for you, look for these features to get the most from your trips.

Earn rewards on what you buy most

Many cards let users earn points, merchandise or cash for every purchase, but those aimed at travelers often offer rewards based on types of purchases—usually more for travel-related transactions. For example, buying cruise tickets might earn three points for each dollar spent, while other transactions would earn one point per dollar. Many cards, like the AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard®, also offer additional rewards on common expenses at home like gas or groceries.

Collect big bonuses up front

Some travel credit cards offer incentives—in the form of points, airline miles or cash beyond standard rewards—to new customers who meet certain spending requirements during the first few months. These cards usually require excellent credit, but the payoffs can add up quickly. For example, new card members can earn up to 100 AAA Dollars redeemable for $100 cash back*.

Discover more ways to save on your next vacation.

See Story

Get extra perks and protection

Look for protections such as rental-car insurance and lost-luggage coverage. If you travel abroad, you’ll want a card that waives foreign transaction fees on purchases you make with your credit card—typically about 3 percent of your purchase price. Some cards offer additional perks, like concierge services, free checked bags and priority boarding.

Use the latest tech to stay secure

Chip-enabled cards are relatively new in the United States, but they’re standard overseas, where traditional “swipe” cards often are declined. To avoid inconvenience, and to frustrate would-be thieves, be sure your travel credit card has the latest safety technology.

Don’t be blinded by the benefits

Travel rewards cards often have higher interest rates than regular cards, so if you carry a monthly balance, you might pay more in interest than you earn in rewards. Also, be sure the travel credit card’s annual fee doesn’t offset its benefits. And if you’re considering one—or even if you already have one—compare multiple offers to find those that best fit your travel needs.

Put Your Wallet to Work

The AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard® is the fastest way to earn AAA Dollars on qualifying net purchases.

*Cash back can be redeemed in the form of a statement credit or ACH deposit.

The creditor and issuer of these cards is U.S. Bank NA dba ACG Card Services, pursuant to a license from Mastercard International Incorporated. Mastercard is a registered trademark, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. © 2018 ACG Card Services. All Rights Reserved. Equal Credit Opportunity Lender.