- 7X points on airline tickets booked through Cheapoair.com
- 9X points on hotel room booked through Cheapoair.com
- 9X points on car rentals booked through Cheapoair.com
- 4X points on dining
- 2X points for all other purchases
- Earn points towards loyalty programs
- Redeem points for flight, hotel, and car rental bookings starting at 200
- 6 month special financing on Cheapoair.com purchases of $399+
- Regular Purchase APR: 15.99% to 25.99% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance APR: 29.99%
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
- Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $38
At a Glance
The CheapOair Visa® is a flexible, no annual fee travel rewards credit card. Cardholders can choose between earning points from airline, hotel, car, and cruise bookings or 6-months of interest-free financing on CheapOair purchases.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Book travel arrangements using CheapOair at least once every two years
- Are already a member of the CheapOair Rewards Program
- Have several expensive trips coming up and want to pay for them over time without interest
- Primarily travel within the United States
CheapOair Visa® Credit Card Review
The CheapOair Visa® was designed for budget-conscious travelers looking to save on their next vacation package. It offers healthy rewards of up to 12 points per dollar for booking flights, hotel rooms, car rentals—and even cruises—with no annual fee and no spending minimum. When used in conjunction with the CheapOair loyalty program, cardholding members can earn even more points per dollar.
The standout feature of this card is its ongoing ability to finance big upcoming travel purchases. Turn your dream vacation into a reality with its 6-months of interest-free financing. This makes up for the card lacking an introductory APR offer and gives the CheapOair Visa® the potential to provide greater long-term value and usefulness compared to other travel cards.
But no travel card is perfect and the CheapOair Visa® is no exception. Despite its ability to get you to where you want to go, the CheapOair Visa® might not be the best equipped to accompany you on your journey—particularly international ones. Less-than-stellar customer service, below-average point values, vague redemption methods, and a foreign transaction fee undermine the card’s virtues and make it somewhat challenging to utilize.
CheapOair Introductory Offer
Spend $500 within the first 90 days of opening an account and receive a $50 statement credit within 1-2 billing cycles. There is no intro APR or other type of interest grace period, however, so new cardholders shouldn’t go out of their way to earn that bonus and risk incurring interest with the card’s high APR.
Special Financing for CheapOair Purchases
Points and miles tend to get the spotlight when it comes to travel rewards, but CheapOair brings a lot more to the table than that. Cardholders can enjoy 6 months of interest-free payment plans on CheapOair purchases of $399 or more (after all discounts). This is an ongoing benefit that is available for the duration of holding the card.
Cardholders will have to choose between earning points or partaking in the special financing – but for someone who wasn’t going to be able to pay off the total cost during that same billing period, the special interest is far more lucrative (and practical) for the frequent traveler. Take for instance, a $1,000 round trip plane ticket. This would earn $40 in CheapOair rewards points. However, repayment over a 6-month period would cost $80 in interest charges. If a costly trip is part of your impending travel plans (a bachelor/bachelorette party, destination wedding, honeymoon, family reunion or family vacation, etc.), opting for CheapOair’s special financing option will almost always be the best option.
It is important to note that this is a deferred-interest offer, meaning that the balance must be paid in full by the 6-month mark, or else accrued interest will be tacked on to the repayment amount (the amount charged for interest is based on your purchase APR). Minimum monthly payments are required – failing to do so will result in interest being charged, as well.
Earing Points with the CheapOair Visa® Card & Loyalty Program
CheapOair points can only be earned by booking travel; they cannot be purchased or transferred from another member/account. CheapOair Visa® cardholders will earn points in the following categories:
- 6x points per dollar at CheapOair.com
- 4x points per dollar on dining
- 2x points per dollar on all other purchases
On the surface, the CheapOair credit card appears to have a typical reward structure that one would expect from a travel card—nothing particularly remarkable. After taking into consideration the additional points awarded through the CheapOair loyalty program (“Member Reward Points”), the bonuses for the CheapOair (and thus, travel) category become significantly more lucrative. The final number of points awarded for CheapOair.com purchase will depend on two important factors: 1) the type of reservation was made and 2) which device was used to make your booking (yes, it matters). Using the CheapOair mobile app will double the number of Member Reward Points earned, but bookings made through the website or over the phone will earn the standard rates listed below:
- Airline Tickets – 1 extra point per dollar spent
- Hotel & Car Rentals – 3 extra points per dollar spent
- Cruises – None, cruises will earn a flat rate of 2X points and can only be booked on CheapCruises.com
Assuming that every cardholder is already a member of CheapOair or plans on becoming one (and why not? It’s completely free), cardholders will essentially be earning 8X points on all airline tickets and travel incidentals (i.e. luggage, seat selection) purchases and 12X points for all hotel and car reservations – not too shabby. Points will not expire as long as a travel purchase is made at least once every two years.
What Are CheapOAir Points Worth?
Sadly, CheapOair points are only worth half a cent (0.5¢) which puts a damper on what would otherwise be top-notch bonuses for travel. But even though the low point value essentially cuts the earning rates in half, it isn’t a dealbreaker. Why? When travel is booked through the mobile app, the CheapOair Visa® offers a return on-par with premium travel cards like the Amex Platinum Card or the Sapphire Reserve. Cardholders will still receive 4¢ per dollar spent on airfare and a whopping 6¢ per dollar spent on hotel and car rentals.
Managing Your CheapOAir Rewards Points
Cardholders may find it difficult to keep track of how many points are coming to them since points earned from the credit card and points earned from the loyalty program are processed and credited to accounts in two different cycles. To check how many CheapOair rewards points are available in your account, log in and visit the “My Rewards” section (under ‘Account’).
Reward points earned as a member of the loyalty program are listed as pending within 24-48 hours of booking. These points become available and ready for redemption 24-48 hours after the corresponding trip has been completed.
Points earned through eligible purchases with the CheapOair Visa® credit card are calculated at the end of each billing cycle and should post within 60 days. The long wait time for points to be available for redemption isn’t an attractive feature but is far less of a drawback to someone who only travels a few times a year than the person who travels in bursts with trips in close succession.
Redeeming CheapOair Points
CheapOair points can only be redeemed for CheapOair purchases. They can either be applied towards airlines or hotel bookings for a discount off the total price or for the purchase of a CheapOair e-gift card. Using points for hotel redemption starts at 200 points ($1 discount) and for airline tickets start at 1,000 ($5).
Points can be redeemed at the checkout page and users must be logged in to do so. Available points will be displayed in the ‘Price Details’ section prior to entering payment information – this section includes the subtotal and the price break down as well as a box to enter a promo code.
Should You Apply for the CheapOair Visa® Credit Card?
The CheapOair Visa® credit card is a surprisingly competitive travel card—especially when considering that it has no annual fee. Its exceptional earning rates are only moderately affected by the low point value, although the only worthwhile purchases to be made are travel bookings (specifically hotels and car rentals), which make this card ill-suited for everyday use. Dining only yields a 2¢ return, which plenty of other credit cards can beat, like the Capital One SavorOne (which also doesn’t have an annual fee), and the return on purchases outside of the bonus categories is a dismal $5 for every $500 spent. But points come secondary in terms of the card’s benefits as the most valuable CheapOair Visa® perk is hands down the ability to provide interest-free financing for costly travel plans. The potential of this feature is vast and stands to save cardholders a lot of money on interest payments – something that no other travel card can boast (for the long term).
However, the less-than-desirable prices, practices, and customer service of CheapOair.com itself as a travel agency irreparably impact the efficacy of the CheapOair credit card. CheapOair charges an agency fee so prices are routinely more expensive than making reservations directly with the airline, hotel, or car rental company. The CheapOair Visa® credit card could still be useful to the casual traveler, but being a third-party in the booking transaction, it carries fewer protections and is not recommended for heavy international travelers (whose travel arrangements can become very tricky and need exceptions or arrangements made). Besides from being an undesirable means for booking international flights, the CheapOair Visa® carries a foreign transaction fee, making it equally ill-advised for using on all abroad-based spending.
For someone looking to the CheapOair Visa® to earn rewards for future travel, the card’s point redemption values are inferior to other general travel cards. Even with its impressive return rates, they’re not enough to warrant paying higher ticket prices just for the opportunity to earn CheapOair reward points. However, this card is definitely worth considering for someone who loves traveling but needs a bit more breathing room when it comes to making it affordable. Other alternatives for travelers who don’t want to stick with any one particular airline or hotel group are: