Getting a great deal is swell and all, but what if you still overpaid by missing out on a free night or free breakfast? Sure, there are cards which come with incredible hotel benefits at certain chains, but just about every major card out there, including ones most likely already in your wallet offer some under appreciated perks and offers… if you know where to look.

a pool with chairs and umbrellas on a beach

Each Credit Card Company Competes For You To Use Their Card By Developing Relationships + Perks…

Credit card companies LOVE travel. Like, love it. They each try to create relationships with certain hotel groups, destinations and brands to offer their cardmembers better benefits than they would get if they used a different type of card, think Visa, Amex or Mastercard. It’s not uncommon for each credit card brand to offer third night free, complimentary breakfast, instant room upgrade or a dining credit, just for pulling that one out of your wallet.

In almost every case it doesn’t matter which bank issued your card, just whether it’s a Visa, Visa Signature, Mastercard World, Mastercard World Elite or an Amex Gold, Platinum. To take advantage simply book through the card’s hotel program to receive benefits.

a bedroom with a staircase and a bed

Here’s How You Take Advantage With Mastercard…

Mastercard offers anyone whose card says Mastercard World or World Elite on the back of it an extensive range of benefits through their Mastercard Luxury Hotels program, which you can view here. You’ll see the benefits at each property for booking through Mastercard. If you want to check out offers which rotate regularly, they also have a featured hotels section here.

a pool with lounge chairs and a tree

Here’s How To Take Advantage With Visa…

Visa has a nifty hotel program for anyone whose card says Visa Platinum, Visa Signature or Visa Infinite on the back. Through the Visa Luxury Hotels program you can grab free wifi, a food and beverage credit, room upgrades and free night offers from time to time. To take advantage just head to their landing page where you can see exactly what your card will do for you as well as any free night offers. They also have an app so you can stay on top of things on the go!

a bedroom with a large bed and a television

Here’s How To Take Advantage With Amex…

Amex has two awesome programs for people, their American Express Gold or Platinum cards. If you have the Gold card you automatically are enrolled in “The Hotel Collection”, which offers a $75 food and beverage credit and an upgrade on stays of two or more nights. For Platinum card holders you are enrolled in the Fine Hotels and Resorts program, which comes with more extensive benefits like upgrades, free nights, complimentary breakfast and a food and beverage credit of at least $100 per stay. Not too shabby.

a city skyline with tall buildings

Final Thoughts…

Be sure to compare the rates quoted from any of the programs with the best available rate directly offered from the hotel or online. In some instances they will be the same, in others they may be slightly higher, at which point you’ll really need to examine the benefits to compare relative costs. Finally, since these stays aren’t booked directly with the hotel they may not earn status credit, though it’s worth confirming over the phone first.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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