Summer travel: 5 great travel rewards programs

Summer travel can be cheap with the help of credit card rewards. Here are five great credit card rewards programs to fit your vacationing style.

5. International explorers

Peter Lehner/dapd/AP/File
Visitors enjoy the weather in a beer garden of a restaurant on Germany's highest mountain, the Zugspitze, in this May file photo. International travelers should consider using credit cards abroad that don't charge a foreign transaction fee.

International travelers need credit cards without foreign fees, simple as that. Roughly 90 percent of all credit cards assess surcharges for purchases processed outside of the United States. Paying them is simply a waste of money when you can get cards like the aforementioned British Airways Credit Card or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, both of which offer attractive initial bonuses and charge neither international fees nor annual fees during the first year.

Now, you might be wondering what the most rewarding credit card would be for someone with damaged or limited credit history. Initial bonuses aren’t targeted to these demographics, so your best bet is to focus on getting as many loans and lines of credit as possible to report positive information to the major credit bureaus on a monthly basis. This will dilute the negatives currently in your credit reports and put you well on your way to excellent credit, which certainly has its benefits for anyone hitting the road this summer.

– Odysseas Papadimitriou is the CEO of the credit-card comparison website Card Hub.

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

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