New cards are always exciting. Wanderlust gets even harder to fight off when you’ve got a healthy stash of points and you’re just itching to use them to go somewhere.

Many members of the 10xTravel staff haven’t opened a new card in awhile, but we’re feeling the need to ramp up our card openings and start watching our points wallets surge.

Take a look below at what cards we’re looking at opening in the near future.

best travel credit cards 2021

Anna Zaks

Anna ZaksIt’s hard to believe, but I’ve never had one of THE most popular cards in our hobby. Yes, that’s right, I’ve never had the Chase Sapphire Preferred card! I became a lot more serious and intentional about accumulating points and miles a few years ago, just when the Chase Sapphire Reserve card first came out and had the fabulous 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points welcome offer. So, of course, I had to jump on it.

Then I opened a couple of other cards, including a couple of business cards, and by the time I was ready for another big injection of my favorite currency, the Ultimate Rewards points, Chase changed the bonus and application rules for its Sapphire products. So I’ve been patiently waiting for the 48 months since my Sapphire Reserve bonus to pass …

So here I am, 48 months later, waiting a couple more months to get under Chase’s 5/24 rule. And then, what do you know, American Express comes out with a widely targeted 100,000 Membership Rewards welcome bonus offer on the Platinum Card from American Express! Because I’ve never had this card and couldn’t resist the 100,000 bonus, I jumped on it.

So now I need to wait a few more months to get under 5/24 again and then finally apply for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. So why the Preferred and not the Reserve again? Because the Preferred has a higher welcome bonus and lower annual fee. I have lounge access and other travel benefits through my Amex Platinum card, so I’d rather pay the lower annual fee for now. And if I change my mind I can upgrade to the Sapphire Reserve card after one year.

John Tunningley

John_TunninglyFor me everything changed when I received the dreaded Chase shutdown and unfortunately I was one of the few we were unable to get overturned (I guess getting 10 chase cards in a year was pretty dumb in hindsight). Since then, I’ve maxed out my American Express credit card slots and picked up a few other American Express cards as well. All of that said I have two cards that are currently in my sights.

The first card I’m looking at is the Hilton Honors Business Card. I am considering cancelling my existing Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express card to open up a card slot with American Express. This way I can apply for the Hilton Honors Business Card. Now you might be wondering why I’m specifically going for the business card when Chase shut me down and I’m above 5/24 and I’ll get into that below.

The second card I’m targeting is the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card from Chase. Now I’m sure you’re wondering why I would be targeting this card after getting shut down by Chase, however, I’ve seen a few minor data points floating around that a few years after a shutdown people have successfully opened new Chase credit card accounts. I have over the past couple of years applied for a couple of Chase cards realizing that the hard pull isn’t a significant impact to my credit score.

The first few denial letters referenced the previous unsatisfactory relationship with Chase however the most recent one instead referenced the fact I had received the sign up bonus too recently (even we can make mistakes calculating time between applications sometimes). With this knowledge in mind, I am waiting until I am below 5/24 again and am hoping to try for the Companion Pass starting early 2022.

There’s no guarantee that I will be approved for either card but part of this hobby is calculating my risks and I think both cards offer great benefits and have strong value propositions. Hopefully towards the end of this year I will be able to write a follow up article to my Chase shutdown bringing it to a close with a new Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card from Chase in hand.

best credit cards

Matt Brown

Matt BrownI’ve spent the last 12-18 months in a bit of a self-imposed cool-down period. After hitting things pretty hard from 2015-2019 and getting pretty much any of the mainstream cards that you’d want, I’ve been instead focusing on optimizing my everyday spend through category bonuses available on my existing cards.

I haven’t opened a new card since….gasp….February 2020. Since I still have a very healthy stash of points in a number of currencies, continuing to open new cards wasn’t the right strategy for me during 2020, especially since I wasn’t redeeming them.

I’ll be under 5/24 again towards the end of this summer, which was one of the goals to accomplish during this cool-down period. This means that I’ll once again be eligible for new bonuses on cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card as well as the Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card, further boosting my Ultimate Rewards balance.

But in the meantime, I’m looking at opening the same card that John mentioned – the Hilton Honors Business Card. The current bonus is a great welcome offer.

I have to wait a few more weeks to open the card until I can close my Delta SkyMiles Gold Business American Express Card. I want at least 1 year to pass since I earned the bonus so as not to get Amex mad at me and potentially claw back my bonus. But once that happens, I’ll have another slot available to fill with the Hilton business card.

Historically, I’ve rarely given Hilton a chance for my business and instead focused entirely on Hyatt and Marriott both for my elite status but as well as award redemptions. Yes they devalued tremendously a few years ago, but as Marriott continues to devalue its program, Hilton seems to be shining like a brighter beacon on the horizon just begging for a second look.

Hilton’s likely biggest fan is our very own Editor-in-Chief Travis Cormier, who has slowly broken it down for me time and time again on how Hilton actually has some great value if you know how to look for it. So I’m happy to say that the Hilton Business Card is the next card for not only me, but also my wife.

Between the two welcome bonuses, we’ll have over 250,000 Hilton points, and since Hilton allows you to pool up to 500,000 points per calendar year with other members, we can easily join forces to build up our stash for a great redemption in the near future.

best hotel credit cards

Travis Cormier

Travis CormierLike Matt, I’ve also been in a bit of a self imposed cool-down period. I’ve had more points than I know what to do with, and I believe in the philosophy of earn em and burn em. I don’t want points just sitting around waiting to be devalued.

I’m personally feeling conflicted about what cards I should get. Since I haven’t opened a card since November 2019, I’m well below 5/24. Naturally that would mean I should look to Chase, right?

Well, here comes Amex and Citi just creeping at my door. Over the years I’ve been trying my best to get a Thank You points earning card. Citi has always said no. I’m hoping that my low velocity in opening cards recently will mean I’m likely to get approved. I’m eyeing the Citi Premier Card. I like the fact that the bonus categories aren’t restricted to just travel, meaning it is a great everyday card to help build up my Thank You points balance fast.

Additionally, Hilton has been on my radar more and more recently. It is seamless to earn Hilton Diamond, and I firmly believe that the American Express Membership Rewards to Hilton transfer opportunity is wildly overlooked. That being said, the Hilton Honors Business Card is really compelling right now.

Despite all of this, I’ve recently earned Hyatt’s top-tier Globalist status. I want to be sure to take advantage of this by staying at Hyatt properties. Naturally, I’m keeping my eye on the World of Hyatt Credit Card but I’m also eligible for another bonus on one of the Sapphire Cards. I’m leaning towards the Chase Sapphire Preferred, as most of my Chase redemptions come from transferring points to partners rather than booking through the Chase travel portal.

Needless to say, I’ve got a lot of cards in mind for opening up. I’m excited to be earning and burning again, and look forward to some of the great trips I’ve got planned this year.

Anya Kartoshova

I have my eyes set on a couple of cards at the moment.

Anya Kartashova

The first one is the Alaska Airlines Visa Business Card from Bank of America. I received a targeted offer on the mail with a bonus of 40,000 Alaska Mileage Plan miles plus a $200 statement credit for spending $2,000 on the card in the first 90 days of account opening.

At the moment, I’m in the process of accumulating Alaska miles for a (hopefully) premium redemption to the Maldives. Now that Alaska Airlines has joined Oneworld alliance, its membership has opened up more opportunities to fly to the islands in business class. The new options now include Qatar Airways, even though we still don’t know the redemption rates. I hope that Cathay Pacific brings back its route to Male (MLE) soon as well.

Back to the card. Because I’m under 5/24, the Alaska Airlines Visa Business Card from Bank of America won’t add to my card count. Not to mention, I’m quite happy with the offer of 40,000 Alaska miles and a generous statement credit. I have an LLC, so I hope that the approval process isn’t too cumbersome.

The second card I’m considering is one of the Chase Ink business cards: the Chase Ink Business Unlimited credit card or the Chase Ink Business Preferred credit card. Both of these come with compelling sign-up offers: $750 cash back (or 75,000 Ultimate Rewards points) with the Ink Business Unlimited and 100,000 Ultimate Rewards points with the Ink Business Preferred.

The major difference between the two cards is the minimum-spending requirements to earn the bonus. The Ink Business Unlimited card’s spending requirement is $7,500 in the first three months of account opening, and the Ink Business Preferred card’s requirement is $15,000 in the same three months.

For me, $15,000 is a bit steep, but $7,500 seems a lot more manageable, which means it’s likely I’ll end up going for the Chase Ink Business Unlimited card, which has no annual fee to boot.

 I do hold the Ink Business Preferred card at the moment, but I plan on downgrading it to the Chase Ink Business Cash card and apply for another Chase business card.