Is an Airline Credit Card Right for You?

By: Timothy Parker

There's an old adage among people who invest in the stock market. Depending on who you talk to it will sound a little different but it goes something like this: "Never trust airlines and ______" the last word depends on the investor. Many say autos. Others say the movies but nearly all of them mention airlines.

What does this have to do with airline credit cards? You'll find out but first, let's take a look at what an airline credit card is. With the large and diverse offerings of credit cards, one can find a card with just about any perk imaginable but the airline credit card was one of the first rewards-style cards on the market.

These cards give you rewards points for your purchases in the form of discounts on airline tickets. Some card issuers will give you frequent flyer miles for the airline of your choice while others will give you a gift certificate (or card) or even offer to book your flight for you.

Sometimes your new airline credit card gives you access to the airline lounge that you see inside of the airport. Often these lounges have comfortable, quiet seating, internet access, and other amenities that make your travel experience more enjoyable. Additionally, you will qualify for discounted rates at participating hotels, rental car companies, and restaurants.

Just like most credit cards, the better your credit, the better your interest rate will be so remember that every time you pay your electric bill on time, it may earn you a lower interest rate on your next credit card and if you do your homework, you are sure to find a card that will give you bonus points just for opening the card. With very little research, one can find 5,000 or more bonus points being offered.

Do you want rewards for miles or dollars? Some cards will offer you rewards for each mile you travel. Similar to skymiles or other airline rewards, if you travel long distances, this might be the best option for you. The other option is to be rewarded for each dollar you spend. This is similar to how most rewards cards work.

When you pick a rewards card, it's important to do your research and think about which card is right for you. If you don't do a lot of traveling, a more general rewards card from one of the major credit card companies may be more beneficial to you.

Never invest in the airlines, right? Here's why it may be important to you. Some experts advise never taking out a rewards card that is tied solely to frequent flyer miles because most of the airlines always seem to be a few days away from going bankrupt. Additionally, changes or total elimination of the frequent flyer programs could leave you without any rewards.

Instead, look at the rewards cards that come from the well known credit card companies who have a large selection of travel rewards. By doing this, you're almost sure to have those rewards points available to you.

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