Last updated on November 8th, 2021
There are great credit cards for every budget, hobby, business, want, need, or anything else you can imagine. Great cards are everywhere, but we know you’re here to see the absolute best luxury credit cards for 2020. Luxury cards are the most sought-after breed in the credit card world. They offer the kind of VIP experiences you dream about but that comes with a hefty price tag. Cardholders have access to exclusive airport lounges, complimentary upgrades, in-flight bonuses, shortcuts through security, and so much more. But are luxury cards worth it? And which cards are the crème de la crème? At BestCards.com, we have an unrivaled selection of credit cards from issuers of every size. If you are looking for a secured card from a regional credit union, we’ve got you covered. If you’re a start-up looking for a great no annual fee business card, you’ve come to the right place. And if you want an uber-luxurious card that pampers you like royalty, look no further. Here are the picks for Best Luxury Credit Cards of 2020.
The Best Luxury Credit Card of 2020: The Platinum Card from American Express
No list of the best luxury credit cards of 2020 would be complete without the Platinum Card. The Amex Platinum is the name in luxury – and that reputation appears safe for the long-term. The card earns impressive points with American Express Travel bookings, but the vast array of travel perks and rewards program tier upgrades are what makes this card a constant in the wallet of the savvy traveler. What are those perks? To begin with, the Platinum Card provides complimentary access to Priority Pass lounges, Delta Sky Club Lounges, and American Express’ own Centurion Lounge and International American Express® lounges. This collection, known as the Global Lounge Collection, offers an unparalleled choice to the luxury-conscious traveler. Additional credits for airline fees, TSA Pre-Check and Global Entry, and $200 in Uber credits make traveling to – and from – the airport a breeze. Once out of the terminal, the Amex Platinum Card continues to shine, offering elite status in both the Marriott Bonvoy (Marriott Gold) and Hilton Honors (Hilton Gold) loyalty programs. These perks give cardholders access to complimentary upgrades, free breakfast, superfast Wi-Fi, and late check-out. All told, the American Express® Platinum Card offers over $500 in statement credits each year. This value on its own makes up for the $550 annual fee. The lounge access, and hotel perks, however, are what makes this card the ultimate luxury card – and one any serious globe-trotter needs to consider.
First, a confession: I have a deep admiration for the UBS Visa® Infinite Card. Not because the card earns an unheard-of amount of points or even great points, for that matter. I adore this card because of the luxury it showers upon cardholders. The UBS Visa® Infinite may only earn 3X points on commercial airfare and travel purchases and an additional 2X points on gas and groceries, but it makes up for this shortcoming with travel perks that would make even a Sapphire Reserve® die-hard envious. The luxury begins with the UBS Concierge service, which not only provides the usual 24/7 availability and ticket booking you’d expect from Amex or Chase, but also a cohort of local travel experts that can guide cardholders through every step of their travel – and provide unrivaled advice. Great advice and 24/7 support are one thing, but a real luxury card needs airport lounge access. UBS provides that (and then some), as cardholders receive unlimited access to Priority Pass lounges. Of course, some programs don’t operate within the Priority Pass network, which is frustrating. Fortunately, UBS has an answer, with their $500 Any Airport Club statement credit. Other travel perks include TSA Pre-Check statement credits, a $250 air travel statement credit, free Gogo in-flight Wi-fi, and savings on private jet bookings through NetJet (including a complimentary 12.5-hour Jet Card for new cardholders). Cardholders also have the usual access to Visa® Infinite hotels and bookings, with an extra $700 service credit for stays at Villas of Distinction, should they need a massage, some champagne, or even a private chef after their long journey. Not bad for a $495 annual fee.
Luxury cards are primarily travel cards. The best luxury cards offer the best luxury travel benefits. After all, if you wanted a card that provided you with luxury at home, you’d likely apply for a Home Depot, Lowes, or Bed Bath & Beyond card. There aren’t many high-end cards as associated with travel as the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. The Sapphire Reserve® made headlines recently due to the rise in its annual fee – now $550. American Express makes up for this with statement credits, effectively wiping out the annual fee. Chase also attempts this trick, offering over $300 in credits towards travel purchases each year. Cardholders also receive TSA Pre-Check/Global Entry credits every four years. The Reserve also provides unlimited lounge access through Priority Pass and Visa® Infinite’S Luxury Hotel Collection. The real benefit of the Sapphire Reserve®, however, is in the value of its points. Beyond the 50,000 bonus points after signup, the 3X points travel and dining pack an extra punch thanks to the Reserve Card earning an additional 50% redemption value through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Program. That program, considered the best in the rewards game, offers cardholders access to one-to-one point-to-airline mile transfers, unique experiences, and more.
The U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve® Visa® Infinite is the discount luxury card on this list (if you count a $400 annual fee as a discount, that is). The Altitude Reserve comes with all the typical travel perks you’ve come to expect from a luxury card. Cardholders receive Priority Pass lounge access, a $350 travel statement credit each year. They also get credits for TSA Pre-Check/Global Entry application fees every four years, and 12 free Gogo Wi-Fi vouchers. The reason I like the U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve®, however, isn’t the perks (though those are great). I love this card because it offers something that other luxury cards don’t provide: The ability to earn serious points through mobile wallet payments. The card gets the same 3X points like many other comparable cards do on travel purchases, but it also earns triple points on purchases made through mobile wallets. The chance to earns 3X points when using the card for everyday purchases brings a taste of luxury into the everyday world. Sure, the card offers many of the goodies that come with cards like the Sapphire Reserve® or the UBS Visa® Infinite, but it does so with the bonus of earning an impressive amount of points at the convenience store, the movies, or anywhere else contactless payments are available.
Best Luxury Credit Cards 2020: Honorable Mentions
Looking for a few more of the best luxury cards of 2020 to explore? Here are some of the cards that narrowly missed the cut:
- Hilton Honors American Express® Aspire
- Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express®
- American Express® Gold Card
- Delta Reserve® Card
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