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Last updated on December 14th, 2021
Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard®
- Regular Purchase APR 16.74%, 20.74% or 25.74%, based on your creditworthiness
- Balance Transfer APR 16.74%, 20.74% or 25.74%, based on your creditworthiness
- Cash Advance APR 25.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Annual Fee $99
Credit NeededBestCards.com uses a variation of FICO Score 8, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card.Excellent , Good
- Processing Network Mastercard
- Earn up to 3 Skywards Miles per dollar spent
- Earn unlimited Skywards Miles that don't expire
- Complimentary lounge access to Emirates Business Class lounges in Dubai
- No foreign transaction fees
- Earn 25% bonus Skywards Miles on Emirates flights
- Regular Purchase APR: 16.74%, 20.74% or 25.74%, based on your creditworthiness
- Balance Transfer APR: 16.74%, 20.74% or 25.74%, based on your creditworthiness
- Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater
- Cash Advance APR: 25.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
- Annual Fee: $99
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
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At a Glance
The Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard is an impressive airline rewards credit card issued by Barclays. The card offers an enticing introductory miles offer, decent earning potential, and complimentary elite status – all for a $99 annual fee.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Fly with Emirates but can’t justify the $499 annual fee of Emirates’ premium credit card product
- Travel through the Middle East frequently and can take advantage of free lounge access in Dubai
- Want a card with no foreign transaction fees
- Prefer the versatility of the Emirates codeshares to an airline alliance
Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard Review
A Big Introductory Bonus Offer
The impressive features of the Emirates Skywards Rewards Card begin with the signup bonus. New accounts earn a huge 50,000 bonus Skywards Miles after making $3,000 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening. Sure, that bonus is less than what comes with the Emirates Skywards Premium World Elite Mastercard, but the latter also has an annual fee of $499 – which is $400 more than what the Rewards World Elite Card charges per year.
The 50,000 Miles introductory offer has a value of approximately $500, given the valuation of Emirates Skywards Miles at 1.2 cents per point ($0.012/pt.). That bonus is an excellent value for the money.
How to Earn Skywards Miles
Since the Rewards World Elite Mastercard features the Emirates name, it earns miles through the Emirates Skywards frequent flyer program.
Cardholders earn three miles for every dollar spent either at Emirates.com or through the Emirates Sales Office. They also earn double miles on eligible airfare, hotel stays, or car rentals. All other purchases earn one Skywards Miles per dollar.
Emirates is not part of the three big airline alliances. Despite that, the carrier has codeshare agreements with a big selection of leading airlines. These carriers include:
- Korean Air
- Malaysian Airlines
- Japan Airlines (JAL)
- Alaska Airlines
- Thai Airways
How to Redeem Skywards Miles
Like other frequent flyer programs, Emirates Skywards offers a wide selection of award options for members. Cardholders can use their miles for:
- Award flights with Emirates or other global airline partners
- Free nights with Emirates’ hotel partners, including Hilton, Hyatt, Ibis, InterContinental, Marriott, and more
- Car rentals with select partners
Complimentary Skywards Silver Elite Tier Membership
New accounts also receive a complimentary first year of Silver-tier membership in the Emirates Skywards program. Silver is the second tier in the program and the first elite tier.
Emirates Skywards Silver tier entitles holders to the following perks:
- Special member-only rates and travel packages
- Ability to earn and redeem miles with Emirates global partners
- Complimentary seat selection
- Excess baggage allowances of 12 kg
- Waitlist priority
- 25% bonus miles when flying with Emirates
- Priority check-in and boarding
- Complimentary lounge access (Dubai only)
- Check-in at Business class counters with flydubai
Keep in mind, however, that this elite tier is for the first year only. To retain Silver status, a cardholder must spend $20,000 in purchases with their Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard each year. They can also keep their status by making 25 flights with Emirates in a calendar year.
Other Card Features
Other features of note with the Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard include a special 25% savings when buying or gifting miles and no foreign transaction fees.
While the card lacks any 0% intro APR benefits, the typical interest rates for both purchases and balance transfers are competitive – if not spectacular.
Since the card is a World Elite Mastercard, holders can also anticipate exceptional Mastercard perks and protections, including:
- Lyft savings.
- Zero Fraud Liability
- Global Emergency Services
- Free ShopRunner Membership
- Mastercard Luxury Hotel Collection
- World Elite Concierge
- Cell Phone Protection
- ID Theft Protection
Should You Apply for the Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard?
The Emirates Skywards Rewards World Elite Mastercard from Barclays is a unique airline card for the global traveler who wants to maximize their value while minimizing their annual fee.
Emirates Skywards is an excellent frequent flyer program with an extensive network of non-alliance partners. For those who frequently globetrot, the card provides the versatility needed to book flights with JAL, Qantas, Copa Airlines, and more. And when travel takes you closer to home, the ability to book flights with Alaska or JetBlue is a nice feature.
For those who don’t plan on flying with Emirates, however, JetBlue offers a no-annual-fee credit card that likely provides greater value. If you fall into that category, check out the JetBlue Card (also from Barclays) and then use your TrueBlue Points to transfer to Emirates, Alaska, or any one of the myriad other partners the low-cost carrier teams with.