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There are many benefits to traveling as a couple. The most priceless perk is that you have a travel companion to build memories with. The best credit cards for couples make it easier to maximize travel perks that can help you both travel more often and enhance your travel experiences.
Chase Sapphire Preferred
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is one of the best travel credit cards, period. You earn some of the most valuable credit card points and have flexible travel redemption options. Every travel and dining purchase earns 2 Ultimate Rewards points per $1. Through March 2022, Lyft rides earn 5x points per $1. All non-bonus purchases earn 1 point per $1.
Your points are worth 25% more (1.25 cents each) when redeemed for award travel on the Chase travel portal. You can also transfer your points at a 1:1 ratio to airline and hotel partners including Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, Emirates, and World of Hyatt.
This card’s newest perk is 12 months of DoorDash DashPass membership that waives your delivery fees on food orders. The trip cancellation and travel protection benefits can also save you and your travel companion thousands of dollars in non-refundable travel purchases.
It has a reasonable $95 annual fee for the primary user. Each additional card is free. Because of the Chase 5/24 rule, your better half can be an authorized user if they have added at least 5 new cards to their wallet in the past 24 months.
You will also have an easier time earning the 60,000-point signup bonus (worth $750 in award travel) which requires $4,000 in total card purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.
Chase Sapphire Reserve
If like the Chase Sapphire Preferred but want a bit more in regards to travel perks, consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. It comes with a $300 annual travel credit, a fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, and Priority Pass airport lounge access. Like the Sapphire Preferred, you’ll be able to use the 1:1 hotel and airline transfer partners. However, your points are worth 50% more when you redeem them for travel in the Chase rewards portal.
There’s also a new Chase Sapphire Reserve benefits update that includes Lyft Pink membership and DoorDash DashPass.
Platinum Card From American Express
For premium travel benefits consider the Platinum Card® from American Express.
Travel perks include:
- $200 annual airline fee credit
- Complimentary airport lounge access
- Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit
- Fine Hotels & Resorts benefits with an average $550 value
- Up to $200 in annual Uber credits (basic cardmember only)
- Instant Hilton Honors Gold and Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status
- 1:1 airline point transfers
When you travel as a couple, your travel companion can accompany you into some of the airport lounge partners at no charge. Flights booked directly from the airline or on AmexTravel.com earn 5x Membership Rewards per $1 (up to $500,000 per year, beginning January 01, 2021). Prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com earn unlimited 5x points.
The Amex Platinum is one of the best credit cards for couples when your companion gets their own Platinum Card. While the annual fee is $550 (See Rates & Fees), the authorized user annual fee is $175 for the first 3 additional Platinum Cards. Despite the fee, additional Platinum Cards let your companion access airport lounges (including Priority Pass, Delta, and Centurion) and get a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck fee credit.
Plus, authorized users can get an American Express® Gold Card for free. However, they will not get some of the benefits that come with the American Express Gold Card.
Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card
The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is one of the few airline credit cards offering a companion certificate. You get one domestic round-trip first-class, Comfort+, or main cabin certificate each card anniversary. Your only fee is up to $75 in taxes and fees for their ticket when they fly with you. This is one of the best Delta credit cards.
Other benefits include:
- Delta Sky Club access and Centurion lounge access when flying Delta
- First checked bag is free for you and up to 8 travel companions
- Main Cabin 1 priority boarding
- 20% in-flight purchase savings
The primary and authorized users have complimentary Delta Sky Club and Centurion Lounge access when flying Delta on a same-day itinerary. There is also a fee credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry.
The annual fee for the primary cardmember is $550 but there are no foreign transaction fees (See Rates & Fees). Each additional Delta Reserve card costs $175 but additional Delta Platinum cards are $0.
New cardholders can earn 40,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after spending $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, earn 15,000 MQMs after you spend $30,000 in purchases in a calendar year, up to four times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status.
Related: Airline Credit Cards
Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card
Of the Southwest credit cards, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card can be the most lavish option.
Perhaps the #1 reason to consider applying as a couple is for getting the Southwest Companion Pass which is one of the best deals for traveling couples. Your companion’s ticket is only the cost of fees and taxes (normally $5.60 each way) when you buy your ticket with cash or points. You need 100 qualifying one-way flights or earn 125,000 Rapid Rewards points in a calendar year to earn the pass.
Southwest credit card purchases and the signup bonus count toward the annual point requirement. All Southwest purchases earn 2x Rapid Rewards. However, for a limited time, cardholders can earn 5x points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases, up to $2,000 spent per month. This offer is available through March 31, 2021.
Everything else earns 1 point per $1 spent.
These additional Southwest travel benefits can enhance your travel experience:
- Annual $75 Southwest travel credit
- 4 Upgraded Bookings per year (when available)
- 7,500 anniversary points each card renewal
New cardholders can also earn up to 80,000 bonus points! New cardholders will earn 50,000 points after spending $2,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. Then, they can earn an additional 30,000 points after spending $10,000 in the first 9 months of account opening.
Although you can apply separately to earn two bonuses, combining your spending power can be more productive.
Related: Best Southwest Credit Cards
World of Hyatt Credit Card
The World of Hyatt Credit Card lets you capitalize on one of the best hotel loyalty programs. For starters, you receive one free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort after your cardmember anniversary. You can also earn an extra free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel if you spend $15,000 during your cardmember anniversary year.
Additionally, you’ll get automatic World of Hyatt Elite status and 5 qualifying night credits every year as long as your account is open. Plus, you can earn two qualifying night credits towards tier status every time you spend $5,000 on your card. This is one of the best hotel credit cards available.
A fun getaway can be a weekend getaway at the MGM Grand or New York-New York in Las Vegas, for instance.
You also get automatic Discoiverist loyalty status with benefits including waived resort fees on award nights, premium on-property internet, free water bottles, and space-available room upgrades.
Your purchases earn up to 9 points total for Hyatt stays – 4 Bonus Points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels & 5 Base Points per $1 you can earn as a World of Hyatt member. You can start redeeming your points for award nights at 5,000 points per night.
The signup bonus is worth up to 10 free nights at a category 1 hotel. Earn your first 25,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months. Spending $6,000 in the first 6 months gives you the remaining 25,000 points.
Learn more: Hotel Rewards Credit Cards
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
The best credit card for couples craving simplicity is the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card. All purchases earn 2 miles per $1, however, Uber Eats purchases earn 5x miles per $1 through January 31, 2021. You can redeem your miles for travel statement credits, book upcoming travel, or transfer to leading travel loyalty programs. The primary cardmember can get a fee credit of up to $100 for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.
The annual fee is $95.
New cardholders can earn a 100k mile bonus by spending $20,000 on purchases in the first 12 months from account opening, or earn 50,000 miles if you spend $3000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
Learn more: Rewards Credit Cards
Summary of the Best Credit Cards for Couples
The best credit cards for couples run the gambit by making it easy to earn bonus points, complimentary travel benefits when your companion travels with you, and annual companion certificates to book a free flight.
What is the best credit card for couples?
The best credit card for couples will usually be a travel rewards card. You see, credit card points are usually most valuable when redeeming for travel instead of cash or gift card rewards.
As there are plenty of top-notch travel credit cards, the best option can depend on your travel habits. Below are some of the first ones to consider:
- Platinum Card® from American Express: $200 airline fee credit and free airport lounge access
- Chase Sapphire Reserve®: $300 annual travel credit, complimentary Lyft Pink and DoorDash DashPass
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card: Annual domestic round-trip first-class, Comfort+, or main cabin ticket and complimentary Delta Sky Club or Centurion airport lounge access with same-day Delta itinerary
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card: Can be a fast-track way to earn the Southwest Companion Pass with purchase rewards, 4 Upgraded Bookings per year (when available), and $75 annual Southwest credit
- Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card: All purchases earn unlimited 2 miles per $1 that can be redeemed for travel statement credits, book upcoming travel, and transfer to travel programs
Can a couple get a credit card together?
The best credit cards no longer offer joint accounts like a bank savings account. Most banks base their decision on the person applying to be the primary cardmember. Additional users don’t undergo a credit check to become an authorized user.
Two banks that may still offer joint credit cards are US Bank and PNC Bank. However, you may need to be an active bank customer to qualify for one of their cards.
The standard procedure for couples to be on the same credit card account is that one person is a primary cardmember and the other person is an authorized user.
One person will need to be the primary cardmember. The other person will need to be added as an authorized user. Being an authorized user means they may not have access to all the additional card benefits like Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credits or airport lounge access. Your partner may also have to accompany you to use certain card benefits.
The good news is that the authorized user can cancel their card and apply for their own primary account. If approved, they will likely qualify for the signup bonus which can be well worth the hard credit inquiry.
Is an authorized user the same as a joint account?
No, authorized users for a credit card are not the same thing as a joint account. A joint credit card account means both people are “primary” users and the payment activity –good and bad– affects their credit score. It also means both people will need to have a hard credit pull.
As an authorized user, only the primary cardmember has a hard credit pull. Being named an authorized user means you avoid the hard credit check but the account will likely show on your credit report. Most banks will report positive credit activity which can improve the additional user’s credit report. If negative activity occurs, that will only impact the primary cardmember but the bank won’t report the info for the authorized user.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here.
For rates and fees of The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, please click here.
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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide, eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Earn 2x total points on up to $1,000 in grocery store purchases per month from November 1, 2020 to April 30, 2021. Includes eligible pick-up and delivery services.
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Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.