The Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard comes with a sign-up bonus that’s easy to qualify for. It also has ongoing miles benefits.
Cardholders earn 5,000 bonus miles after their first purchase with the card and another 5,000 by spending $750 within 90 days of opening the account, for a total of 10,000 miles worth $100.
You’ll also earn 2 miles per $1 spent (or 2% back) on purchases of travel and dining (including fast-food restaurants) and 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases.
The total reward is unlimited as long as your account remains in good standing.
This card has no annual fee.
A second version of the card charges an annual fee in exchange for higher rewards. The fee is $89, but it’s waived the first year.
The annual-fee card rewards users with 2 miles per $1 spent on all purchases (not just travel and dining) and double the sign-up bonus: 10,000 miles after the first purchase and another 10,000 miles after spending $750 within 90 days of opening the account.
To earn enough miles to break even with the annual fee in subsequent years, you’d need to spend $4,450 per year (each mile is worth 2 cents). If you plan to charge significantly more per year to this card, the fee may pay off.
With either card, you can redeem your miles for travel with airlines, travel agencies, tour operators, hotels, motels, resorts, cruise lines, railways and car rental agencies. Just request a statement credit for a travel purchase you made within the last 90 days (www.barclaycardus.com).
This feature makes it convenient to use your rewards anytime, anywhere, without worrying about mileage redemption rates or blackout dates like you might with airline- or hotel-specific travel rewards credit cards.
This card’s miles are valuable even if you don’t travel much, however. You can redeem them as a statement credit for any amount. You can also cash in your miles for gift cards or merchandise.
You’ll need at least 2,500 miles for each of these options.
The card also offers a mileage rebate of 10% on travel redemptions, meaning that when you redeem 10,000 miles for a $100 car rental purchase, for example, you’ll get 1,000 miles back within one to two weeks.
Miles don’t expire as long as your account is open and in good standing.
Besides the annual fee and miles accrual rate differences, another important distinction between these two cards is that the no-annual-fee card has a 0% introductory APR for the first 12 billing cycles.
After that, the interest rate increases to 14.99% or 18.99%, depending on your credit score.
The annual-fee card charges these interest rates from the get-go.
You won’t want to use either card for a balance transfer. The interest rate is 14.99% or 18.99%, and the transfer fee is a higher-than-usual 4%.
Either card would be good to take on a trip abroad, however, as there is no foreign transaction fee.
If you aren’t approved for the World MasterCard credit card, you may be approved for a Platinum card with fewer benefits, so read your approval letter carefully.
Only first-time card members with new accounts are eligible for the sign-up bonus.