The Best Credit Cards for Summer Vacation 2014

credit cards for summer vacationThe sun is shining; the birds are singing; the shirtless men and bikini-clad girls are flocking to the beach in droves. It is an excellent time to relax and enjoy yourself without the stresses of everyday life, but what if you do not have the funds to do so? What if you are on the hunt for a credit card that will allow you to experience summer as its meant to be experienced?

Here are just ten credit cards that can add a little oomph to your summer vacation. While it is by no means an exhaustive list, it should be enough to get you started with umbrella drinks and jet ski rentals.

1: Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard

If you are a frequent flyer, it does not get any better than the Barclaycard Arrival card. You earn two miles for every $1 purchase, a flat rate without any restrictions on brand or store, and you can bank even bigger savings when you take them as statement credits. It does not even charge you a foreign transaction fee when you are withdrawing money overseas. If you’ve always dreamed of getting away from it all with a tropical beach vacation, the time is ripe to put in your notice and sign up for the Barclaycard Arrival.

2: Discover It

This nifty little card charges zero APR for the first 18 months, giving you plenty of time to enjoy yourself as the days lengthen and the sun blazes. You’ll also enjoy five percent cash back in rotating categories based on the season. In spring and summer, you’ll be rewarded for fueling up at gas stations and buying supplies from home improvement stores; when the world settles back down into winter, you’ll get cash back for shopping with certain retailers for your Christmas gifts. For a card with creative perks and a great bottom line, Discover has cornered the market on convenience.

3: American Express Blue Cash

Try Blue Cash this summer for a credit card as blue as the sky. You’ll certainly feel like flying once you get a glimpse of its generous rewards program; you can earn a staggering six percent cash back on groceries alone. The rate is slightly lower at gas stations and convenient stores, offering just three percent, and the rate for purchases everywhere is one percent. However, think about the six percent bonus every time you go to Kroger! That could pay for some barbecues and pool parties this summer.

4: Sallie Mae MasterCard

College students, this one, is for you. Not only can the Sallie Mae card help you pay off your student loans, but it also offers premium cash back rates in bookstores and gas stations. It has you covered from classroom to commute. It does not even charge you an annual fee for use, keeping things nice and straightforward for your first foray into the world of credit cards. If you are looking for no-fuss, no-frills plastic that will see you through the summer semester and well into the upcoming academic year, join hands with Sallie Mae.

5: Citi Hilton HHonors Visa Signature Card

Chill in the cold air conditioning of the Hilton when you sign up for the HHonors card. It operates on a points system, which we know isn’t anyone’s favorite way of earning rewards, but it also comes with a substantial number of perks that make the hassle worth it. For example, you’ll earn six HHonor points for every $1 spent at affiliated stores, resorts, and restaurants, and those points can later be applied to everything from late check-outs to free wireless when you are staying at a Hilton hotel. It is an above-average rewards card and a great travel card, so if you plan on seeing the world anytime soon, put HHonors on your shortlist.

6: Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

If you are planning a road trip or a big summer blowout, the Sapphire is the card for you. For one, you’ll receive a whopping 40,000 bonus points when you spend at least $3,000 in the first three months of signing up; you can spend the whole summer traveling with your new plastic and then enjoy a nice nest egg when you return in the fall. It also rewards you for brand loyalty: You’ll get 25 percent off travel costs when you book through Chase. If your travel lust flares whenever the temperatures warm, the Sapphire is the card you need.

7: Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

What if you do not feel like slogging your way through complicated loyalty programs and lots of fine print? The Quicksilver Cash Rewards card offers exactly what it says on the tin: cash and nothing else. You’ll receive 1.5 percent cash back on all purchases, and that is it. No points system. No conciliatory prizes. You just earn 1.5 percent on every transaction until you cash out and fill your hands with bright green bills. Now that is a card you’ll want for a good time this summer!

8: Barclaycard Rewards MasterCard – Average Credit

Another great card from Barclaycard, this one was specially designed for those of middling credit scores. There’s no sign-up fee and no strange policies to get yourself tangled in, and you’ll earn two percent cash back for groceries, gas and utilities as well as one percent everywhere else. We’ve talked a lot about party and travel cards in this list, but if you are just looking for a quiet way to reestablish your credit, this could be the card for you. You do not have to wait until the new year to make positive changes in your life. A new season is good enough.

9: US Bank Cash+

You pick your rewards when you sign up for the US Bank Cash+ card. You’ll earn five percent cash back in a category of your choosing, like gas, groceries or even drugstore purchases. Once you’ve decided how to reap your rewards, you can enjoy that category for a full quarter or for $2,000, whichever comes first. You are obligated to change it by then, but that is still money in your pocket that wasn’t there before. Oh, and did we mention you’ll also enjoy one percent cash back on all other purchases?
10: British Airways Visa Signature Card

Rounding out our list of top credit cards is the British Airways Signature Card. While it does not offer much in regards to daily rewards, it offers huge incentives for frequent flyers. You’ll earn 50,000 points after spending $2,000 in your first three months, and that translates to an almost entirely free round trip with British Airways. Spend $30,000 in a year and they’ll hand you a free ticket. By this time next summer, you could be flying to Japan or the Alps or Machu Picchu without spending a dime.

These are just 10 of the top credit cards for your current summer vacation. If you’d like more help in making a decision, or if you want perks that aren’t offered by the cards listed here, contact us at Credit Help Cards for additional options. Whether you are looking for airline miles or hotel extravagances, our selection of credit cards will ensure that you have a good time during sunny days.