Updated on January 29, 2015
Barclays upgraded their Arrival card not too long ago. A few people have asked me what I thought about the new card so I'm writing this post.
Links to Apply:
- Direct Link
My affiliate link [expired](this requires a few seconds extra to click through to the Airline and Frequent Flyer Offers, thank you in advance if you use this!!)
Bonus: After spending $3,000 you receive 40,000 miles to use for any hotel, any airline, anytime
Annual Fee: $0 first year, then $89
This card has been on my top 5 list before but some recent great offers pushed it off. Its still a great card because:
- Its easy to get the bonus due to the relatively small spend requirement (some other cards are $5k or $10k)
- With no blackout periods, especially during holidays, you can easily use these miles for a $400 credit anytime without trying to figure out which airline to search and problems finding availability. No, its not the biggest or best bonus, but for many people this may be the only one that makes sense.
- You will get 2x miles on all purchases and there are no foreign transaction fees which will save you money when you travel internationally.
- To top if off, you get 10% miles back – so redeem 40,000 miles and you get 4,000 back (worth another $40), so you get a total value of $440. It really doesn't get easier than this. If you are short on time or don't feel like trying to figure all this out, this is the card for you.
Well, nothing major changed in my mind. Here are a couple small new features:
- The EMV CHIP+PIN feature in the card will help you pay more securely using a PIN while traveling internationally. The Washington Post explained what this is all about last year — click here to read the article.
- Some additional redemption options such as ground/water transportation (taxis/ferries) time shares, and others. I suspect most people will just use it for hotels and airfare but its a small new perk.
To sum it up, you will earn 40,000 miles after completing the spend requirement in the first 90 days. There is a 2nd Arrival card with No Annual Fee but that one only gives 20,000 miles, so I would avoid that one. You'll get $400 credit towards any flight or any hotel anytime with no restrictions. If you are willing to put a little time into it (believe me, its worth it), you'll get a better deal with the other cards offers – see the latest offers posted here. That alternative takes some time and sometimes people get frustrated with it (searching for the right flights that are available when you need to go) and give up, letting their miles go unused or expired. Contact me if you need help.
[In full disclosure, the Reward Boss gets paid a referral if you use the Barclay card links above for but for the others this is not the case. I research and post the best deals I can find, regardless of whether there is a commission available. You don't have to use my links but I really appreciate if you do. As always, if you have any questions please feel free to post a question.]
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