Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card Review

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"The fastest way to earn Choice Hotel points!"

For those who frequent Choice Hotels, this card offers the opportunity to accumulate points quickly. Points can be redeemed for free stays, gift cards, and more.

Card Summary Table

  • Card Bonus & Info
    • 32,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days after account opening – enough points for up to 4 FREE NIGHTS!
    • 8,000 anniversary bonus points every year you spend $10,000 or more on purchases with your card by your account anniversary date – enough points for up to 1 FREE NIGHT!
    • 2 points per $1 spent on everyday purchases
    • 15 points per $1 spent at eligible Choice Privileges locations with your Choice Privileges® Visa® Signature Card and Choice Privileges membership
    • 5 points per $1 spent on eligible purchases of Choice Privileges points or Choice Hotels gift cards
  • Card Provider
    Visa Barclaycard
  • Card Type(s):
  • Card Focus:
    • All Purchases
    • Hotels
  • Annual Fee
    • $0
  • Rewards Center
  • Goes Well With
  • Foreign Transaction Fees
    3%
  • Typical Users
    Hobby Travelers, Parents / Families, The Average Spender
  • Customer Service Number

    302-255-8990

  • Login Link
  • Partners
    • Choice Hotels include Ascend Hotel Collection, Cambria Hotels & Suites, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Sleep Inn, Quality Inn, Clarion, MainStay Suites, Suburban, Econolodge, and Rodeway Inn.
    • Airline partners include Air Canada Aeroplan, American Airlines AAdvantage, Aeromexico Club Premier, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Alaska Mileage Plan, Spirit Airlines Free Spirit, and United MileagePlus.
  • Interest Rates ?
    • 15.74%, 20.49%, or 25.49% based on your creditworthiness for purchases
  • Late fees ?
    • Up to $37
  • Balance Transfers
    • 0% APR for first 15 billing cycles on balance transfers (made within first 45 days)
    • 15.74%, 20.49% or 25.49% variable APR based on creditworthiness after that
    • $5 or 3% fee of the amount of each transfer (whichever is greater)
  • Cash Forwarding
    • 25.74% APR
    • $10 or 5% of the amount (whichever is greater)

The Ideal Cardholder

You love to travel, and your favorite place to stay when you’re away is always a hotel from the Choice Portfolio.

With more than 6,300 hotels to choose from in over 35 countries, it’s easy to find a room you’ll love no matter where you go.

Sign up for the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card, and you’ll earn loads of points on your stays. Plus, you’ll earn points on all of your everyday purchases too!

Redeem those points for rewards like additional night stays and more. All for doing something you do anyway!

Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card hotel traveler
Enjoy some drinks by the pool or relaxing time in your room at a Choice hotel while earning lots of points with the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card.

Sign-Up Bonus, Earning Categories, and Points

The Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card comes with a moderate sign-up bonus (see the card summary table above). Just spend the required amount in the allotted time and those points are all yours.

That’s enough points for up to 4 free nights! 

Earn 15x points at participating Choice Privileges locations (10x points as a member of the Choice Privileges loyalty program plus 5x points for using the Choice credit card to pay).

Buy additional points or Choice Hotels gift cards and get 5x points per dollar. All other purchases are worth 2x points.

The Choice Privileges program works like most loyalty programs. You can redeem points for complimentary nights, upgrades, and a variety of other rewards.

Points don’t expire as long as you use them every 18 months. There’s no limit to how many points you can earn and no blackout dates either.

The card also comes with an introductory APR offer for balance transfers. If you have other cards with higher interest rates, transferring balances can save you big!

Bottom Line: Get a decent sign-up bonus, earn 2x-15x points for purchases, and enjoy an intro rate on balance transfers with the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card.

Elite Status and Anniversary Bonus Points

As a card holder, you are automatically awarded Gold elite status. Otherwise, you would need to stay 10 nights in a calendar year to qualify.

With Gold status, you can book free award nights 50 days in advance and earn 10% bonus points on eligible stays!

Also, every year that you spend at least $10,000 on your card by your account anniversary date, you get 8,000 bonus points!

Bottom Line: Get automatic Gold status and benefits with the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card. Plus, earn 8,000 points for spending $10K before your anniversary date.

Choice Privileges Program

The new Choice Privileges program is designed to help you earn free nights, instant rewards, and dream getaways quickly and easily.

Members get exclusive rates, including at least 2% off the hotel’s best available rate. Book stays at the following Choice Hotel brands directly at choicehotels.com or through the Choice Hotels mobile app:

Choice Hotels
Comfort InnSuburban Hotels
Comfort SuitesSleep Inn
EconoLodgeQuality Inn
Quality InnCambria Suites
Rodeway InnMainstay Suites
Clarion HotelAscend Hotel Collection

Check out Choice Privileges rules and regulations here.

Bottom Line: Choice Privileges program members receive exclusive rates, and when you use your Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card for stays you will get additional points for your stay!

Card Drawbacks and Alternatives

The Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card offers plenty of benefits, including those exclusive to Visa Signature cardholders. However, there are a couple of drawbacks to the card.

The biggest drawback is that you’re limited to Choice Brand hotels and resorts. You also don’t have a lot of flexibility when it comes to redeeming your points.

If these issues concern you, consider the the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard®.

With it, you earn 2x points for all purchases. You can make travel plans with any hotel, airline, or car rental agency and redeem your points as statement credit afterward. Plus, you earn a 5% rebate on top of that.

It also typically has a pretty high sign-up bonus.

Bottom Line: For those who don’t stay at Choice Hotels, the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card is an alternative option.

Final Thoughts on the Card

The 15 points per dollar earned for staying at Choice Hotels and using the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card is a terrific benefit.  

If you stay at Choice Hotels on a regular basis, the card is worth it for those purchases alone, especially since there is no annual fee.

Cardholders also get the introductory APR on balance transfers. Add in the automatic Gold status, 10% bonus points on stays, and 8,000 points for spending $10,000, and you can get quite a lot of value from this card!

Great Card If

  • You are a frequent traveler
  • You enjoy staying at Choice Hotels
  • You want the opportunity to earn a ton of points

Don't Get If

  • You prefer staying at hotels outside the Choice portfolio
  • You want to earn frequent flyer miles

U.P. Pro Tips

When you use the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card to book a block of rooms, you can really rack up the points.

Earn up to 10 points per dollar for up to 4 rooms per night. In addition to the accommodations, eligible charges include taxes, phone calls, restaurant and bar charges, and laundry services.

To qualify, you must stay in one of the rooms and all of the charges must be paid with your card. Also, you are only allowed to earn bonus points for 1 room.

earn points for rooms barclaycard choice privileges
Book a block of hotel rooms with your Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card to earn lots of points for your stays!

How To Use the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card: The Upgraded Way™

Best Way To Maximize Points

The trick to getting the most value out of the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card is to use it in as many ways as possible. For example, you can earn 10 points per dollar (plus card points) when you book a vacation rental.

Choose from villas, condos, homes, cabins!

The following are other strategies you can use to earn more points:

Tip #1: Get airline rewards for each qualifying hotel stay. You must provide your membership number for the airline frequent flyer program at check-in.

The table below shows Choice Privileges airline partners participating in the program. 

North American Airline PartnersInternational Airline Partners
Aeroplan: 500 miles/stayAirBerlin TopBonus: Up to 500 miles/stay
American Airlines AAdvantage: 250 miles/stayCzech Airlines OK Plus: 250 miles/stay
Club Premier: 250 miles (400 km)/stayAir New Zealand Airpoints – varies
Southwest Rapid Rewards: 1,200 points/stayQantas – varies
Free Spirit Spirit Airlines: 250 miles/stayVelocity Frequent Flyer – varies
Alaska Mileage Plan: 250 miles/stay
United MileagePlus: 250 miles/stay

See terms and conditions for more information.

Tip #2: Earn Amtrak Guest Rewards points when you stay at a Choice Hotel. Pick one of 2 options:

(1) Earn a straight 250 Amtrak Guest Rewards points (and no Choice Privileges points).

-or-

(2) Use “Your Extras” to earn both Choice Privileges points AND 100 Amtrak Guest Rewards points on qualifying stays.

“Your Extras” provides instant bonus perks when traveling midweek. These bonuses are in addition to any points or promotions. Use them for your current stay or save them for later.

In addition to Amtrak Guest Rewards, you can choose from the following options:

Reward Options
500 Choice Privileges points100 airline miles
fuel rewards ($0.20 per gallon)$2.50 Amazon credit
$5 coffee card$2.50 Uber trip discount

See here for Canadian and International options.

Choose your “Extra” preference in your online account under the “Your Extras” tab. (You MUST make the choice before check-in and cannot change your preference for that stay.)

Then, book a midweek stay (Sunday-Thursday nights).

Tip #3: Take a cruise to earn points. For a limited time, get 5 Choice Privilege points per dollar on over 155 ships and more than 20 different cruise lines. See here for additional details.

Tip #4: Transfer or Exchange Points from Choice Privileges partner programs.

Transfer…And Receive…
1,000 Membership Rewards1,000 Choice Privileges points
5,000 Amtrak Guest Rewards15,000 Choice Privileges points
1,250 Diners Club/Club Rewards2.400 Choice Privileges points

Tip #5: Shop the Online Mall and earn at least 1 point per dollar for all purchases. There are more than 900 participating retailers. Log in here.

Tip #6: Become a member of other partner programs such as LifeLock, e-Rewards, or Vinesse Wine Club and earn points. Close on a new home loan or finance an existing mortgage by June 2017 and receive 50,000 bonus points!

Tip #7:  Need more points? You can buy them! Purchase up to 50,000 points per year and then redeem them for Choice Privileges Rewards.

earn choice points with cruises and Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card
Earn extra Choice Privileges points by booking cruises through their partner program, and earn even more when you use your Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card!

Best Way To Redeem Points

The redemption system for the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card can be a little confusing. Let’s take a closer look at your opportunities for redemption.

Option #1: Redeem points for digital gift cards through ChoiceHotels.com or the mobile app. Gift cards will be sent to your email address within 48 hours.

Redeem 16,000 points for a $50 gift card to over 80 restaurants and retailers. You can even give the card to someone else.

“Experiential Rewards” are also available for race car driving, dinner cruises, spa days, and more.

Option #2: With a minimum of 5,000 points, you can shop with any of the following online vendors:

Online Vendors
AmazonFacebook
Heels.comClub Penguin
E-CampusiTunes
RunescapeVudu
World Golf Tour

Option #3: Gift points to friends and family. Each cardholder can give up to 50,000 points annually.

Option #4: Redeem points for magazine subscriptions at the Mags for Points website.

Option #5: Redeem points to make a cash donation to a charitable organization. Find a complete list of participating organizations here.

Option #6: Transfer points to airline miles for domestic and international travel.

Soon cardholders will be able to initiate transfers online, but for now you’ll need to call 888-770-6800. Allow 2-6 weeks for transferred miles to post.

AirlineTransfer Ratio
Aeroplan, American Airlines AAdvantage, Club Premier, Alaska Mileage Plan, Spirit Airlines Free Spirit, United MileagePlus, AirBerlin TopBonus, Czech Airlines OK Plus5,000 pts = 1,000 miles
Southwest Rapid Rewards5,000 pts = 1,800 Rapid Rewards points
Air New Zealand Airpoints20,000 pts = 50 Airpoints
Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer20,000 pts = 3,000 Frequent Flyer points
Qantas Frequent Flyer20,000 points = 3,000 Frequent Flyer points

Option #7: Redeem points for cruise credit on over 155 ships and 22 different cruise lines.

Choice Privileges PointsCruise Credit
85,000 $250
160,000$500

Credit will be used toward the purchase of your cruise. Call 800-596-0451 for details and to book your cruise. 

Option #8: Enjoy Free Reward Nights for 6,000 to 35,000 points (75,000 in Australia). There are more than 1,500 hotels that require 8,000 or fewer points. No blackout dates apply.

Flex Rewards. Get free nights for fewer points during the week or on weekends when you take advantage of Flex Rewards. Redeem points for discounted reward nights at more than 1,500 properties.

When you log into the Choice Privileges site, you’ll be able to see the number of points needed for a free night by date on each hotel property page. Choose “Special Rate” from the drop-down menu to select “Choice Privileges Reward Night.”

Option #9: Don’t have enough points for a Reward Night? Just use Points Plus Cash and combine 6,000 points with cash instead. Points Plus Cash is available at any property that offers Reward Night point levels of at least 8,000 per night.

You can’t earn Choice Privileges points, airline miles, or Amtrak Guest Rewards points for Points Plus Cash stays. The maximum number of points you can purchase through Points Plus Cash per calendar year is 250,000.

Option #10: Save points by booking Flexible Free Nights at participating Choice Hotels. The number of points needed to redeem for this offer varies depending on the day of the week.

Book through ChoiceHotels.com, use the mobile app, or call 800-4CHOICE.

Partners

Choice Hotels has a wide variety of partners including the following;

Choice Hotel Portfolio: Ascend Hotel Collection, Suburban Hotels, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Clarion Hotel, Suburban Hotels, Mainstay Suites, Sleep Inn, EconoLodge, Rodeway Inn, Cambria Suites, Quality Inn

North American Airline Partners: Aeroplan, United Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Spirit Airlines, Southwest, Club Premier, American Airlines

International Airline Partners: AirBerlin, Qantas, Air New Zealand, Virgin Australia Velocity, Czech Airlines

Card Math

Hopefully, the information we’ve provided so far in this review has been helpful. Now we will examine the monetary value of the card with some calculations.

A Quick Recap of the Card

Here is a snapshot of the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card’s cost and earning potential.

Annual FeePoints Earned for Hotel StaysPoints Earned for Gift CardsPoints Earned All Other Purchases
$015 pts/$1 Choice Hotel Stays5 pts/$1 Gift Cards and Points2 pts/$1 Everything Else

Comparing the Spending of Our Model Families

Using the typical spending scenarios of our 3 model families, let’s find out how many points it is possible to earn in 1 year.

For this section, we will assume our families book all of their stays at Choice Hotels. We won’t include the 5x category for purchasing Choice Hotels gift cards or Choice Privileges points.

FamilyChoice Hotels 15xOther Purchases 2xTotal Points Earned
Kennedys$1,800 / 27,000 pts.$20,800  /41,600 pts.68,600 pts.
Jetsons$6,000 / 90,000 pts.$30,400 / 60,800 pts.150,800 pts.
Hartnells$10,500 / 157,500 pts.$34,600 / 69,200 pts.226,700 pts.

The families earned a lot of points so far! Now we need to add in the 10% elite status bonus for the points earned from Choice Hotel stays. Then we’ll arrive at a grand total for each family.

FamilyTotal Points Earned10% Elite Status BonusGrand Total
Kennedys68,600 pts.2,700 pts.71,300 pts.
Jetsons150,800 pts.9,000 pts.159,800 pts.
Hartnells226,700 pts.15,750 pts.242,450 pts.

Our model families can earn between 71,300-242,450 points in 1 year using the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card. Those are pretty impressive totals!

With redemptions starting at 6,000 points for a 1-night stay, our families will certainly be able to get more than a few stays from their points! And the card doesn’t cost a thing to use because there is no annual fee.

If the families redeemed for $100 gift cards (32,000 points), they would get $300-$800 to spend at online retailers. Plus, cardholders get 5 points per dollar when purchasing gift cards!

Think about how much value you could get from the card if you put even more expenses on it!

Comparing the Value of the Card to Other Hotel Cards

So how does the card hold up in a comparison to other hotel credit cards we’ve reviewed?

In the table below, the Chase Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card and Citi Hilton Honors Visa Signature Card are very similar to the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card regarding the number of points earned by our model families.

FamiliesBarclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® CardChase Marriott Rewards Premier Credit CardCiti Hilton Honors Visa Signature Card
Annual FeeNone$0 first year, then $85/yearNone
Earning Rates2-15 pts./$11-5 pts./$12-6 pts./$1
Max. Points for Spending Families242,450 pts.235,600 pts.289,000 pts.
Minimum points for 1 night6,000 pts.6,000 pts.5,000 pts.

All 3 cards have redemptions starting at 5,000 or 6,000 points.The only card with an annual fee is the Chase Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card, which is $85 after the first year.

The biggest difference between these 3 cards is the hotel brand represented. For most people making a choice between the cards, the best option would be the one offered by the hotel brand they frequent the most.

value of the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card
Is the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card the best card for you? Weigh the value of the rewards of the cards you are interested in with other similar cards to find out which are best for you.

Final Thoughts on the Barclaycard Choice Privileges Visa Signature Card

For those who prefer Choice Hotels, the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card has the potential to provide significant value.

As always, we recommend that you perform the calculations based on your personal budget so you can decide whether the card is right for your situation.

The Gritty Details: Everything Else You Need To Know

The rules of the card are similar to those of most hotel cards.

The sign-up bonus is only available to new cardholders.

You cannot earn points during a billing cycle in which you haven’t paid the minimum due on time.

Bonus points are awarded at the close of the billing statement in which the qualifying transactions are posted and typically take 4-6 weeks to be deposited into your Choice Privileges Rewards account.

Anniversary bonus points are applied during the billing cycle following your account anniversary date, and they also take 4-6 weeks to be deposited into your Choice Privileges Rewards account.

In order to earn airline miles, your name must be on the frequent flyer membership. Allow 2-4 weeks for the miles to post after your stay.

Points Plus Cash rewards nights don’t count toward elite status. The cash portion of cancelled Points Plus Cash reservations is non-refundable. 

If you cancel before the deadline, the points you purchased will be refunded along with the original points.

Read the full terms and conditions of the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card for more info.

Other Unique Features

The card comes with the following Visa Signature benefits:

$0 fraud liability – If your card is lost, stolen, or fraudulently used, you won’t be held responsible for unauthorized transactions.

Visa Signature concierge service – Get help with buying gifts, booking tickets to a show, travel research, and more 24/7.

Travel and emergency assistance – Get cash within 1 business day (and maybe even 24 hours) when you have an emergency on a trip. When you call, Visa will help navigate you to the nearest bank where you can pick up the cash.

Travel accident insurance– Coverage for you and your family members in case of an accident.

Lost luggage reimbursement – Eligibility for reimbursement if your luggage is lost by the carrier.

Auto rental collision damage waiver – Collision and theft coverage for your rental car when you use your card.

Roadside dispatch – Toll-free referral dispatch for emergency roadside assistance 24 hours a day for help with fuel delivery, tire changes, towing, and more. (Not a standard benefit. Check your agreement for more information.)

Emergency card replacement/cash disbursement – Get an emergency card or a card replacement in 1 business day if your card is damaged, lost, or stolen.

Photo Credits/Credit/Copyright Attribution:
Couple in Pool: nd3000/Shutterstock
Hotel Hallway View: Karan Bunjean/Shutterstock
Cruise Ship: LaMiaFotografia/Shutterstock
Woman Showering in Money: pathdoc/Shutterstock

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Platinum Card® from American Express

FAQ

What is the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card? Is it worth it?
The card allows you to earn points for purchases and redeem them for rewards in the Choice Privileges program.

Earn 15 points per dollar for stays at Choice Hotels as a Choice Privileges member and Choice credit card holder.

Also, earn 5 points per dollar for purchasing Choice Hotels’ gift cards and 2 points per dollar for all other purchases.

Because it is a Visa Signature card, you receive a variety of shopping, entertainment, and travel perks, including $0 fraud liability and access to concierge service 24/7.

If you stay at Choice Hotels on a regular basis, you can find considerable value from the card.

Is there an annual fee for the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card?
No, the card does not have an annual fee.

Does the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card have a sign-up bonus?
Yes, typically it does. See the card summary table above for the current sign-up bonus info.

Is there a 0% introductory APR offer with the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card?
Yes, typically. See the card summary table for the current offer.

How do I enroll in the Choice Privileges reward program?
Visit this page to enroll.

How do you redeem points for rewards with the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card?
To redeem points for rewards, log into your Choice Privileges account. You can find out which redemption options you qualify for and make the redemptions from your account.

Where can I view my Choice Privileges statements?
Access your online account to see your Choice Privileges statements. Click on “Stay Activity” to select the statement period you would like to view, and then click “Go.”

Do points earned with the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card expire?
Points don’t expire as long as you are an active Choice Privileges member. You must have at least 1 qualifying activity every 18 months to maintain active status and retain accumulated points.

Are there travel partners associated with the Choice Privileges Rewards Program?
The Choice Hotels include the following: Quality Inn, Sleep Inn, Ascend Hotel Collection, Suburban Hotels, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Mainstay Suites, Clarion Hotel, Suburban Hotels, EconoLodge, Cambria Suites, and Rodeway Inn.

North American Airline Partners include: United, Alaska Airlines, Southwest, Club Premier, Spirit Airlines, American Airlines, and Aeroplan.

International Airline Partners include: AirBerlin, Czech Airlines, Qantas, Velocity, and Air New Zealand.

Is there a foreign transaction fee for using the card internationally?
Yes, there is a 3% foreign transaction fee when you make international purchases.

Which is better, the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card or the Barclaycard Rewards MasterCard®?
The Barclaycard Rewards MasterCard® earns 2 points per dollar for gas, utilities, and grocery store purchases, plus 1 point per dollar for all other purchases. It does not have a sign-up bonus.

The Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card earns 15 points per dollar for Choice Hotel stays, 5 points per dollar for purchases of Choice Hotel points and gift cards, and 2 points per dollar for all other purchases.

The decision about which card is better needs to be made based on how often you stay at Choice Hotels and whether you want a card that helps you rebuild credit, like the Barclaycard Rewards MasterCard®.

What is the login for the Barclaycard Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card?
Log in to your account at the Barclaycard website.