You never know what’s going to happen when you travel. There could be an emergency or you could be hit with an unexpected delay. Obviously, your hope is that your trip goes off without a hitch, but it’s also good to be prepared if one of those unexpected situations occurs.
Consumers have all kinds of protections available to help protect them from issues while they travel. EMV credit card chip technology has become standard even in the United States, which makes it much more difficult and expensive for criminals to create a copy of your card. Lost baggage insurance protects you if your airline loses your belongings. Trip insurance reimburses you if you aren’t able to go on your trip.
While you may use a travel rewards credit card to get the most points during your trip, these cards usually also offer excellent travel protection. Here are two of the top cards on the market when it comes to protecting you during your trips:
Citi Prestige Card: Better the More You Spend
The Citi Prestige Card is an excellent option when it comes to earning travel rewards. When you use the card to purchase airline tickets or hotel stays, you earn 3 points for every dollar you spend. On purchases in dining or entertainment, you earn 2 points per dollar spent, and all other purchases earn 1 point per dollar spent. If you spend $4,000 using the card within the first three months, you’ll earn bonus of 40,000 points.
You can redeem points for cashback, gift cards, merchandise and more, but the smart move is to redeem your points for travel rewards. You’ll get the most value out of each point when you point it towards flights or hotel stays.
What about the card’s travel protections? They are quite extensive, starting with travel and emergency assistance. Citi can help you solve travel issues and make arrangements for you in case of an emergency. You’ll have worldwide travel accident insurance and lost baggage protection with a coverage per person of up to $3,000 each trip if your baggage ends up lost, stolen or damaged.
If you have any expenses because of an unplanned delay, your trip delay protection will cover you on that. This card does have a steep annual fee of $450, but there’s an annual airline credit of $250. You won’t pay any foreign transaction fees using this card, and it allows you to access some elite travel benefits.
Wells Fargo Propel 365 American Express Card: Excellent Protection for Wells Fargo Customers
This card doesn’t quite have the points bonuses of the Citi Prestige, although in all fairness, it’s also much less expensive. With the Wells Fargo Propel, you earn 3 points per dollar spent at gas stations in the United States. Purchases in restaurants in the United States earn 2 points per dollar spent, and all other purchases earn 1 point per dollar spent.
The signup bonus is 20,000 points for spending $3,000 within the first three months. Redemption options are the same, except you’ll be going through American Express’s Member Rewards program, which has quite a few transfer partners available to you.
The card has auto rental collision and liability insurance, so if you rent a vehicle in the United States or Canada, you’re covered in the event of damage or a total loss. If your luggage is lost, your card issuer will reimburse you for any essential items you need to purchase. You’ll have travel accident insurance and a 24/7 hotline you can call for assistance with any travel emergencies.
You can also call a concierge line 24/7 for travel assistance, including booking trips, interpreting and finding attractions. This card has a $45 annual fee that the card issuer waives the first year, and it offers no foreign transaction fees. For any of your points that didn’t earn a bonus, meaning you earned 1 point per dollar spent and not 2 or 3, Wells Fargo offers a points bonus which can be 10, 25 or 50 percent.
If you’re looking for your next travel card, both of these cards are excellent options in a crowded credit card marketplace.