The Best Rewards Cards for a Valentine's Day Splurge
February 2, 2018
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According to a survey from the National Retail Federation, consumers planned to spend an average of $136.57 on Valentine’s Day in 2017. Among lovebirds, parents, friends, and workplace acquaintances, the most popular planned gifts included jewelry, evenings out, flowers, clothing, and gift certificates.
The sum people spent is not a ton of cash, but it’s not pocket change, either. Whether your lover, spouse, or friend is worth it is something only you can decide.
5 Credit Cards to Splurge with This Valentine’s Day
If you are hoping to score a slightly more exciting or luxurious Valentine’s Day this year, however, certain rewards and travel credit cards can help. Not only do some dole out rewards you can use for an epic gift, but some rewards are a gift on their own.
Here are some of our favorite cards for an epic Valentine’s Day, plus how to use them to your advantage:
Chase Sapphire Preferred®
There’s a reason this card is consistently named one of the top rewards credit cards for people who want free travel or cash-back. The Chase Sapphire Preferred® makes it easy to earn 50,000 points worth $625 in travel after you use it for $4,000 in purchases within three months.
But, you don’t have to spend your points on travel. You can also cash them in for high-dollar gift cards that are perfect for a luxurious Valentine’s dinner out. While options change all the time, you can frequently cash in your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for gift cards to hot spots like P.F. Chang’s, Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Morton’s Steakhouse, The Cheesecake Factory, Red Lobster, and more.
Since Chase points are worth one cent each when redeemed for high dollar gift cards, your 50,000 points will net you $500 in gift cards. This card charges a $95 annual fee but it’s waived for the first 12 months.
Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite MasterCard®
Here’s a good one if your sweetie prefers a getaway instead of jewelry or lingerie. With the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite MasterCard®, you’ll earn 2x points for each dollar you spend along with 40,000 points after you use your card for $3,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.
Your 40,000 points plus 2x points for meeting the spending requirement will net you 46,000 points worth $460 in travel. This is enough to cover a few nights in a hotel for a Valentine’s getaway, or perhaps one night in a hotel coupled with a fancy dinner.
The best part is, you can use these rewards in arrears to erase your travel purchase from your bill. So, if you needed to pay for your travel to reach the $3,000 spending limit within 90 days, you could erase all or most of the travel expenses off your bill after-the-fact depending on how many points you racked up. Keep in mind, however, that you have to redeem points in increments of 10,000 points – worth $100 – or more.
This card charges a $89 annual fee, but it’s waived for the first 12 months.
The Chase Freedom® is an easy card a no-brainer if you’re looking for a way to score Valentine’s Day for free. This card offers $150 in cash-back after you use it for $500 in purchases within three months of account opening. Beyond the signup bonus, the card also offers 5x points on your first $1,500 spent in categories that rotate every quarter and 1x points on all other purchases.
Not only can you use your points for cash-back at a rate of one cent per point (15,000 points = $150), but you can redeem them for gift cards or purchases made through Amazon.com as well. The best part is, this card never charges an annual fee. This makes it a smart credit card option to keep for the long-term.
The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card is yet another card that could be exactly what you need to cover some of the costs of a romantic getaway. Once you sign up for this card, you’ll receive 2x points for every dollar you spend plus 50,000 points after you use your card for $3,000 in purchases within three months of account opening.
Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card
You can use these points to cover any type of travel purchase, such as a hotel or resort, a plane ticket, a train ticket, or most rental condos as long as they code as travel. This card does charge $95 annual fee, but it’s waived the first year.
Fortunately, like the Barclaycard, you can use this card to cover your travel purchases then use your points in arrears to remove the purchase from your account.
Last but not least, let’s say you want to splurge for Valentine’s Day by buying something expensive – so expensive you need to make monthly payments. Instead of putting the purchase on a regular credit card, it makes sense to sign up for a card that offers 0 percent APR on purchases first.
Keep in mind that not all 0 percent APR offer zero interest on purchases. Some cards offer 0 percent APR on balance transfers, but charge regular interest rates on everything you buy.
With a card like the Chase Slate®, you’ll get 0 percent APR on purchases and balance transfers for a full 15 months. If you want to buy a Valentine’s treat so expensive you can’t pay cash, this card will allow you to make the purchase now and pay it off over 15 months without paying interest.
If you have other high interest debts, the Chase Slate® will also let you transfer your balances over to get 0 percent APR for 15 months with no balance transfer fee as long as you transfer your balances within 60 days of account opening. The best part is, this card doesn’t charge an annual fee.