Best Big Spend Bonuses

Many of the card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which Frequent Miler receives compensation. Please see my full advertiser disclosure here. Note: American Express is a Frequent Miler advertiser. Regarding card offers and benefits described here, terms & conditions apply.

One way in which banks try to encourage spending on their credit cards is by offering bonus points or perks for high spend.  Below is an interactive table showing cards that offer spend bonuses.

Search this table using keywords such as:

  • Elite Status
  • Bonus Points
  • Companion (for companion tickets)
  • Free Night

Also, limit results to your program of interest by searching for “Marriott”, “United”, “SPG”, etc.

CardBig Spend BonusBank Name
Delta Reserve Business Credit Card from American Express Delta Reserve Business Credit Card from American ExpressEarn 15K bonus miles and MQMs (towards elite status) after $30K spend and another 15K bonus miles and MQMs after $60K spend per calendar year.Amex
Delta Reserve Credit Card from American Express Delta Reserve Credit Card from American ExpressEarn 15K bonus miles and MQMs (towards elite status) after $30K spend and another 15K bonus miles and MQMs after $60K spend per calendar year.Amex
Hilton HHonors from American Express Hilton HHonors from American ExpressGold elite status with $20K calendar year spendAmex
Hilton HHonors Surpass from American Express Hilton HHonors Surpass from American ExpressDiamond elite status with $40K calendar year spendAmex
Platinum Card® from American Express for Ameriprise Financial Platinum Card® from American Express for Ameriprise Financial 5K bonus points for every $20K spend, up to 30K bonus points annuallyAmex
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American ExpressEarn 10K bonus miles and MQMs (towards elite status) after $25K spend and another 10K bonus miles and MQMs after $50K spend per calendar year.Amex
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American ExpressEarn 10K bonus miles and MQMs (towards elite status) after $25K spend and another 10K bonus miles and MQMs after $50K spend per calendar year.Amex
Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American ExpressSPG Gold elite status with $30K annual spendAmex
Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American ExpressSPG Gold elite status with $30K annual spendAmex
The Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Mercedes-Benz The Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Mercedes-BenzReceive a $1000 certificate each year you charge $5,000 in purchases, good toward the future purchase or lease of a new Mercedes-BenzAmex
Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card issued by Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card issued by BarclaycardEarn 8,000 annual bonus points after $10,000 in annual spendBarclays
Frontier Airlines World MasterCard® Frontier Airlines World MasterCard®$100 discount voucher after $2,500 in annual spend.

Barclays
JetBlue Business Card JetBlue Business CardEarn Mosaic elite status with $50,000 calendar year spend. Mosaic status good for rest of calendar year and all of next year.Barclays
JetBlue Plus Card JetBlue Plus CardEarn Mosaic elite status with $50,000 calendar year spend. Mosaic status good for rest of calendar year and all of next year.Barclays
The Hawaiian Airlines® Business MasterCard® issued by Barclaycard The Hawaiian Airlines® Business MasterCard® issued by BarclaycardEarn up to 40,000 annual bonus miles — 20k miles with $50-$99k annual spend or 40k miles with $100k or more annual spend; Barclays
The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite MasterCard® issued by Barclaycard The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite MasterCard® issued by BarclaycardEarn 5,000 annual bonus miles after $10,000 in annual spendBarclays
BOA Amtrak Guest Rewards World Mastercard BOA Amtrak Guest Rewards World Mastercard
--> Click here to find current offer details
Earn 1,000 Tier Qualifying Points towards elite status for each $5K spent in a calendar year. Limit 4,000 TQPs per year. Ability to transfer up to 25,000 points to hotel partners after $20K calendar year spend.BOA
BOA Virgin Atlantic card BOA Virgin Atlantic card7,500 bonus points with $15K cardmember year spend + an additional 7,500 points with $25K cardmember year spend; Also: 1 tier point towards elite status per $2,500 spend (max 2 per month).BOA
Chase British Airways Visa Signature® Card Chase British Airways Visa Signature® Card
--> Click here to find current offer details
Every calendar year you make $30,000 in purchases on your British Airways Visa card, you’ll earn a Travel Together companion Ticket good for two years. Chase
Chase Fairmont Visa Signature Card Chase Fairmont Visa Signature CardAnnual free night after $12K in spend. One stay credit after $7500 in spend. Max 2 stay credits per calendar year.Chase
Chase Hyatt Visa Signature Chase Hyatt Visa Signature
-Spend $20K in calendar year, get 2 stay credits & 5 night credits towards elite status
-Spend $40K in calendar year, get additional 3 stay credits & 5 night credits towards Diamond elite status
Chase
Chase Marriott Rewards® Premier Chase Marriott Rewards® Premier
--> Click here to find current offer details
1 credit towards elite status for every $3,000 in purchasesChase
Chase Marriott Rewards® Premier Business Chase Marriott Rewards® Premier Business1 credit towards elite status for every $3,000 in purchasesChase
Chase Ritz Carlton Rewards Visa Chase Ritz Carlton Rewards Visa$10K spend per account year to keep Gold elite status; $75K spend per account year for Platinum elite statusChase
Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Plus Card Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Plus CardIf you earn 110,000 points in one calendar year, you'll get a companion pass good for the rest of that calendar year and all of the next year
Chase
Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Card Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Business CardIf you earn 110,000 points in one calendar year, you'll get a companion pass good for the rest of that calendar year and all of the next year
Chase
Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card Chase Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit CardIf you earn 110,000 points in one calendar year, you'll get a companion pass good for the rest of that calendar year and all of the next year
Chase
Chase United MileagePlus® Explorer Business Chase United MileagePlus® Explorer Business 10K bonus miles after $25K calendar year spendChase
Chase United MileagePlus® Explorer Card Chase United MileagePlus® Explorer Card
--> Click here to find current offer details
10K bonus miles after $25K calendar year spendChase
AT&T Access More Card from Citi AT&T Access More Card from Citi10,000 anniversary bonus points after $10,000 in annual spendingCiti
Citi AAdvantage® Executive World Elite MasterCard® Citi AAdvantage® Executive World Elite MasterCard®
--> Click here to find current offer details
10K Elite Qualifying Miles towards elite status when you spend $40K in calendar yearCiti
CitiBusiness® AAdvantage® World MasterCard CitiBusiness® AAdvantage® World MasterCardEarn $99 plus taxes domestic companion certificate after $30K spendCiti
Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve CardDiamond elite status with $40K calendar year spend; free weekend night with $10K spend per cardmember yearCiti
BB&T Spectrum Rewards BB&T Spectrum RewardsEarn a 30% bonus on cash earned when spending $50K or more annuallyOther
BBVA Compass Select BBVA Compass Select$100 Orbitz Travel Card after $20,000 spend; Earn 1,000 bonus points each month in which you spend $5,000 or more.Other
Best Western Rewards Premium MasterCard issued by First Bankcard Best Western Rewards Premium MasterCard issued by First Bankcard20K bonus points after $10K annual spendOther
Virgin America Premium Visa Signature Virgin America Premium Visa SignatureReceive 5,000 Status Points towards elite status for each $10,000 of spend, up to a max of 15,000 Status Points per calendar year
Other
Club Carlson Business Rewards Visa issued by US Bank Club Carlson Business Rewards Visa issued by US BankFree night at any US property after $10K annual spendUSB
Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature issued by US Bank Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature issued by US BankFree night at any US property after $10K annual spendUSB
U.S. Bank FlexPerks® Travel Rewards Visa Signature® card U.S. Bank FlexPerks® Travel Rewards Visa Signature® card3,500 bonus points with $24K spend per cardmember yearUSB
Wells Fargo Visa Signature Card Wells Fargo Visa Signature CardWith $50K spend, points become worth 1.75 cents each towards airfareWells

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About Greg The Frequent Miler

Greg is the owner, founder, and primary author of the Frequent Miler. Greg is known for developing creative new ways of earning points and miles; and is an expert in "manufacturing spend" (finding ways to increase rewards credit card spend while getting the money back).

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  1. […] Originally Posted by sent The loan rep then says 99% of professionals taking this kind of equipment loan don't do it this way. Then he starts telling me it's a bad idea to put it on a CC. I ask why, and he says bc people forget to pay their CC and now they are paying a higher interest on the CC rather than just the interest on the loan. I said that's dumb because I pay my CC off on time. Then he starts lecturing me about how if I have extra money sitting around, I should fully fund my retirement and just let the loan company send the vendor the check. I asked how long does it take for the check to arrive and he tells me it is overnighted the minute they get the invoice. I am still . He then says most people don't have the $60K sitting around. OK, I buy that. I have the $60K to front the money and wait a week or two for the loan check and am pretty sure my not-yet fully funded retirement accounts won't take a huge hit in 2 weeks. But why would he care if the loan was repaid to me versus being paid to the Vendor when the vendor said I could do it via the CC method? He's afraid you gamble that money away and declear bankrupcy? Maybe 99% ARE dumb so that such advice is sound 99% of the times. I'm also puzzled to why so many people are using debit card to buy stuff — sometimes hundreds of dollars. If you want to apply for new cards, this may be interesting: http://boardingarea.com/freque…spend-bonuses/ […]

Comments

  1. You need to factor in the annual fees to get a better picture. For example, with the Delta Reserve the 3.4% rebate comes in at a value of $1,020 with $30k spending and $2,040 with $60k. Subtracting the annual fee gets you a rebate of $570 or 1.9% and $1,590 or 2.65%.

    • David: Good point. I’ll add the annual fees. Many cards offer great perks along with their annual fees, though. For example, the Delta Reserve offers free lounge access & free companion pass. Those alone can offset the annual fee. So, I’ll probably list two rebate %s: one with the annual fee and one without.

  2. You forgot the current Brit Air offer, or I suppose excluded it since its the terms of min spend vs an annual hurdle available.

    But the incremental $9K to the first 25K tier is a 5.2% yield @ your 1.29cpp rate, and the subsequent 10K (to 20K) is a 4.84% yield.

    I don’t have a value for the travel together ticket for the next 10K (to 30k). Although I suppose this portion is available each year.

    I just picked this card up and since you have a year to cross the subsequent spend its kind of a perk to know that spend between app cycles can be earmarked to a high yield (as long as you know you can reach the hurdle).

    • Dave: Thanks! I did indeed forget about the BA card. I won’t count the signup offer as part of the rebate since that is a one time thing for each person, but I will try to estimate the value of the companion pass. Plus, the BA card gives 1.25 points per dollar so that helps too.

  3. I was also going to suggest the BA card
    30k spend gets you 37500 avios + companion pass
    putting a value on the companion pass is tough, could be $1,000, could be $10,000.
    let’s say for arguments sake that it’s $1,000
    that’s 37,500 +$1,000 for $30k spend.
    You value avios at 1.29 cpp, so that’s $483.75+1,000= 1483.75
    4.9%

    -$95 for annual fee = 4.6%

    those percentages go up the more you value the companion pass.

    • Steve: Thanks for the added thoughts about the BA card. I think I will estimate the value at $1000

      Carl: Thanks. I’ll add that info. I don’t consider Hyatt card to be one of the “best” big spend bonuses. Sapphire doesn’t have any (unless you count the 7% annual dividend). I do have the MileagePlus united card in there.

  4. I would like to see this comparison to include the annual fee and renewal benefit

    How about adding:
    Hyatt
    Sapphire (are there any spend bonuses?)
    United cards

  5. Good post. I did not know about the wavied processing fees for US Air. The big question is that could you be earning greater value elsewhere with your high spend? For example, spending $20k and getting ~5X points using a variety of tricks equates to 100K UR points, or a roundtrip ticket to Europe. I personally would rather have more miles than status.

    • romsdeals: That’s very true. The point of this post is to list the best offers available for big spend, but not to imply that any of these are the best way to spend your money

      pas: Yes, those costs do add up, but they vary from none to a lot so I don’t think it would make sense to add those fees to this post.

      Karl Mitchell: Thanks! I’ll look into the VA card more deeply!

  6. Another cost to consider will be the cost of making the spend. So if $4.95 is paid to generate spend of $500..then that adds up.

  7. You missed that the Virgin Atlantic BoA card gives 7,500 miles at $15k spend and an additional 7,500 miles at $25k spend. Not bad for a card that earns 1.5 miles/$ AND get you status for spend.

  8. JP Morgan Select – 25k at $100k spend
    JP Morgan Palladium – 35k at $100k spend
    Chase Old Bold – 10k at $25k; another 12.5k at $50k; another 25k at $100k. It’s not a currently offered card but a lot of people have it.
    Chase Fairmont – 1 free night at $12k
    Amex Business Gold (the Gold before this current version) – 25k MR at $50k spend

  9. The free internet on the SPG gold status is very valuable, specially overseas. I have been in some hotels in Europe that charge in excess of 25 euros per day for internet. If you add the price of using skype with the internet for phone calls, then it adds up big time. To me is much more that $100 per year.
    Plus that gold status also gives you either 250 points on checking in or a welcome drink. If you check in/check out several times a year, those points can add up.

    • Ricardo: I understand that the relative value of something like SPG Gold status varies tremendously from person to person. Hilton set the price of Gold status at $95 with the Citi Hilton Reserve card and Hilton offers better benefits for Gold members than SPG does. So, I think $100 is fair as an average value. Remember that some people might not use the benefit at all.

  10. FM – you’ve left out the very best earning card – big or small – curious omission. But fine with me – don’t want it abused any more than it needs to be.

  11. I didn’t say Hyatt has a big spend bonus- instead, just that’s it hard to keep track of where it’s worth putting spend. A summary of best bonuses and best places to put general spend, would be valuable.

    I used to have 3-4 cards and life was simple. Now it’s hard to keep track of everything.

  12. How do you compute the American Express Delta Reserve value as 3.4%?
    suppose you spend $60K, the return should be:
    (1.5*90K+0.5*30K)/60K=2.5
    Did I miss anything?

  13. Ild sell my delta points for 1.29cents a piece. But what’s fair trading price when it’s illegal to sell them. To me, the points are worth much less since its almost impossible to redeem them if you don’t have great flexibility.

  14. You have to love the PRG card. It is pretty easy to spend $30K at grocery stores, which is all 2X points, leading to 3.23% back using your numbers. At least that’s what I’m working toward.

  15. So I have a dilemma. I need to spend 200k this year and credit cards are accepted. So not knowing what most of this acronyms mean can you advise what would be the best way? And the way that would have the rewards last the longest? I don’t understand MQM’s or EQM’s ect.

  16. Great job as always, but could use a little update. Just off the top of my head, missing Citi AT&T Access More & Barclays AAdvantage Aviator cards.

  17. Note: I’ve completely changed this Best Big Spend Bonuses page. Now, all info is driven from a behind-the-scenes dataset. On the page, you’ll find an interactive table that lets you filter instantly to the types of bonuses you’re interested in. Keep in mind that this shows only recurring spend bonuses, not signup bonuses, and not automatic card features.

    There’s a good chance that this new table is missing some things or that there are some things wrong. Please let me know!

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