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Air Miles Credit Cards / Reward Points Towards Air Miles

By: Kristin McGrath

Frequent flyer credit cards are a great way to earn miles toward air travel. There are several types of cards in this category, each offering different types of benefits.

With co-branded frequent flyer cards, you earn miles on your favorite airline and its partners. These cards are known for their generous introductory offers — often enough for a free round-trip domestic ticket. If you already have a frequent flyer account and fly a particular airline often, these airline cards are a good choice. In addition to earning points on regular spending, you can often earn extra points for flights on your airline.

If you don t want to be limited to one particular carrier, general travel rewards credit cards let you earn points that can be used to obtain free tickets on many major airlines. The points you earn can also often be redeemed for cash back or other travel expenses, such as free hotel stays, car rentals and cruises.

Typically, you can expect to earn 1 point for each dollar spent, but some airline miles cards give double miles or extra points for certain types of purchases (such as supermarket or gas purchases). It is well worth your time to compare credit cards to find the card that is right for you. Carefully consider how many points or miles are needed to get a free flight, whether there is a limit to earnings you can accumulate per year and whether the points or miles expire.

And as with any type of rewards card, your earnings are quickly undermined by finance charges if you carry a balance forward from month to month. If you carry a balance, you may find our low-interest credit cards better suited to your needs. You may also wish to choose from credit cards that offer cash back instead of air miles.

Want some insider tips on travel rewards cards? Our editor at large, Erica Sandberg, talked with Brian Kelly, founder of The Points Guy. in a live Google Hangout that aired Dec. 18, 2013. Check out the video to learn more about these topics:

  • How your card can help you earn free flights
  • How to snag upgrades
  • Perks your card has that can make travel more pleasant
  • The best travel rewards cards for beginners

Whether you re flying free or just grabbed a great upgrade with your travel card, don t forget to check out the Federal Aviation Administration website for important policies and information about traveling safely.

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