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Best Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses in 2021

by Violet WillettJuly 30, 2021
Best Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses in 2021

There is a common misconception about credit cards being money pits, causing some people to avoid credit cards. However, the advantages of credit cards are pretty immense if used correctly. Most cards offer hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars worth of freebies upon application. You just need to spot the most lucrative accounts.

However, with dozens of card-issuing banks on the market, sorting through the different promos seems like a tall challenge. Fortunately, we can help! To give readers a good starting point, we’ve listed down the credit card brands that offer the most lucrative and robust sign-up offers. See which ones match your lifestyle!

Top Credit Card Sign-Up Offers

Don’t waste your time perusing every card-issuing bank’s unique sign-up offer. If you need help filtering the bad offers from the good ones, keep reading. Here is the best credit card sign-up offers available:

Best for Beginners: Chase Freedom Unlimited

  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Sign-Up Bonus: $200
  • Min. Credit Score: 700 - 749

With a zero annual fee and easy sign-up bonus incentive, Chase Freedom Unlimited ranks among the best cards for beginners. Spending just $500 in three months already qualifies you for the $200 cashback.

Best Hotel Benefits: Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express

  • Annual Fee: $450
  • Sign-Up Bonus: 150,000 points
  • Min. Credit Score: 700 - 749

Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express gives you 150,000 convertible points for spending $4,000 within the first three months. Apart from the generous sign-up bonus, you also earn the Hilton Diamond status instantly.

Best Travel Card: Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

  • Annual Fee: $95
  • Sign-Up Bonus: 100,000 points
  • Min. Credit Score: 650 - 750

If you love traveling, try the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. Apart from the sizable 100,000 sign-up bonus, you earn double points for using your card on travel and dining expenses.

Best Premium Sign-Up Bonuses: The Platinum Card from American Express

  • Annual Fee: $695
  • Sign-Up Bonus: 100,000
  • Min. Credit Score: 700 - 749

Luxury travelers should definitely consider The Platinum Card from American Express. It has a steep annual fee of $695, but you can use the card on worldwide travel and dining expenses to earn 10x points.  

Best for Extra Miles: Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card

  • Annual Fee: $250
  • Sign-Up Bonus: 90,000 bonus miles
  • Min. Credit Score: 700 - 749

Unlike other cards, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card doesn’t force cardholders to jump through hoops just to earn miles. In fact, you’ll already get 90,000 bonus miles for spending $3,000 three months from account opening.

Best for Cashbacks: Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card

  • Annual Fee: $95
  • Sign-Up Bonus: $300 cashback
  • Min. Credit Score: 700 - 749

The $300 cashback sign-up bonus is great. However, what sets Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card apart is the fact that cardholders will earn unlimited 4% and 3% cashbacks on entertainment expenses and groceries, respectively.

Best Sign-Up Bonuses for Students: Hilton Honors American Express Card

  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Sign-Up Bonus: 100,000 points
  • Min. Credit Score: 650 - 699

The Hilton Honors American Express Card offers low barriers to entry, so even students can utilize their benefits. They have a low minimum credit score, no annual fees, and a generous sign-up bonus of 100,000 points for spending $1,000 three months from account opening.

Best Business Credit Card: Ink Business Preferred Credit Card

  • Annual Fee: $95
  • Sign-Up Bonus: 100,000 points
  • Min. Credit Score: 700 - 749

Business owners who find themselves frequently flying should take a look at the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card. Apart from the low annual fee, the card gives you a sizable 100,000 bonus points just for spending $15,000 during your first three months.

Does your poor credit score prevent you from opening a new credit card? Any Credit can help! Check out our quick guide introducing the issuing banks that offer unsecured credit cards to debtors with bad credit.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get a sign-up bonus on a credit card?

Different credit cards have varying terms and conditions, but in most cases, you will only qualify for sign-up bonuses after spending a minimum account. However, we strongly discourage purchasing unnecessary items just to collect the rewards. If you want to boost your card spend, pay for daily essentials like groceries and utility bills.

Are sign-up bonuses worth it?

We encourage debtors to get sign-up bonuses that match their lifestyles. Opening new accounts indiscriminately will do more harm than good. For instance, while free airline miles might seem like an exciting bonus, these wouldn’t suit people who do not travel too often.

Also, do not forget to calculate the miscellaneous fees. Beware of dishonest card brands that trick clients into unfairly high fees under the pretense of robust, extensive sign-up bonuses.

Can you apply for the same credit card twice?

You cannot open two exact credit card accounts simultaneously, although you can sign up for the other card products your card-issuing bank offers. 

However, when it comes to reopening closed card accounts, your bank has to reassess your credit score again. Debtors with no missed payments or unpaid debt would have higher chances of qualifying, of course.

How much can your credit score increase in a month?

Some credit experts say that debtors can increase their credit scores by a hundred points in just 30 days. However, we don’t think this holds any truth. Credit scores increase and decrease based on several long-term metrics, so the idea of jumping any higher than 50 points in one month seems far-fetched.

Do you have to pay taxes on bank bonuses?

Bank bonuses classify as taxed income. As such, you should report all the bank bonuses you receive throughout the tax year in your Form 1099-INT.

As you might already know, one-size-fits-all credit card plans do not exist. Instead of blindly signing up for the most popular deals, carefully peruse the different offers available, then weigh the pros and cons. You need a card that matches your credit needs and overall lifestyle. Using a generic, cookie-cutter account yields negligible benefits.

Also, don’t feel obligated to sign up for every card that offers exciting bonuses and freebies. Only get the credit cards you can afford. Remember that new credit accounts hurt your credit history, so you will need some time to recover and boost your score again. Opening multiple cards might have lasting effects on your credit rating.

Having trouble qualifying for your first credit card? Any Credit can help! Check out our free resources about signing up for a credit card.

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