The Travel Credit Card that Yields the Most Satisfaction Feedback (and the Card with the Most Horror Stories)

I get emails.

In some of the emails I receive, people lavish me with thanks because they’re so glad they’ve been able to start to travel for less than they ever imagined.

The card I’m thanked most often for suggesting is the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

While I hate to say there is a ‘best credit card‘, this card definitely most frequently appeals to newbies.


Why People are Satisfied with the Chase Sapphire Preferred

  1. The points have a ‘get some value’ guarantee.  Lots of folks get frustrated when they spend however many months or years earning points only to find that there is no availability.  In their opinion, the points are ‘totally useless’ even if they are valued at thousands of dollars.  If you can’t use the points to help you make a trip, then it seems like a waste of time and energy.  However, with the Ultimate Rewards points, you can almost always find a way to get some value out of your points.  Worst case scenario – you can use the points to get a gift card.
  2. The points have a lot of flexibility.  You can transfer them to a select number of airlines (Southwest, United, and British Airways to name a few).  If you can’t find availability on any of those airlines or their partners, you can use the Ultimate Rewards booking portal and get a 25% bonus on the points value.
  3. The earning rate is very competitive.  In the categories of dining out and travel you can earn 2 points per dollar.
  4. The bonus of 40,000 Ultimate Rewards is one of the best available bonuses.  Yes, you can get 50,000 American or 50,000 United, but most folks would rather have 40,000 and know they can use them instead of the 50,000 that has restrictions.  Personally, I’d rather just get all of them.  :)

If you’re a newbie wondering which card you might start off with, then history says the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a solid bet in terms of its ability to make you thankful you got the card.

The Card with the Most Negative Feedback

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.  That’s essentially what I need to say to people who complain about the British Airways credit card (more specifically, the award program).

I think people think along these lines.

British Airways.  That’s based out of Europe.  I’d like to go to Europe.  I’m going to get the British Airways card.

Then, lo and behold, I get an upset person because it cost them $1,000+ in taxes, surcharges, and fees to use Avios to fly to Europe on British Airways.

Look, I love the British Airways program because it has some redemption jewels.  However, there are some really bad redemption rates, too.

I would never say the British Airways card is the worst card, but you definitely need to know what you’re doing to get real value out of the program.

Most negative feedback should be understood from the ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ perspective.  You’re the problem if you expect a program to do what they never said they would do.

Still, the British Airways credit card is the one that leaves folks least satisfied.


  1. A-L says

    Add me as one of the people who has not been happy with the British Airways card. Having read up on it before getting it, I knew that BA was not the card to use to go to Europe because of all the fees & taxes. But I got it to use the points on American Airlines. We were able to use it for one trip to New York. But there have been 3 different times that we’ve tried to use it and never found any availability (and that included a 2 week window and trying around 30 cities, at least for two of those times). Its useless to have a ton of points if you can’t use them, especially since the BA site is so cumbersome to use for AA flights.

    We also have the Sapphire card, and the one time we wanted to use it, we were able to get what we wanted (transferred points to United and booked a flight there).

    • says

      Sorry to hear about your problems with British Airways. I’ve had pretty good luck finding availability. However, right now I’m having issues tryign to find a flight from Chicago to Denver. If you ever need help trying to find availability, please let me know. Glad to hear that things worked out better with the Sapphire Preferred card.

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