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Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) for Military [Waived Annual Fees, 6% Interest Rates]

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Carissa Rawson

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Carissa served in the U.S. Air Force where she developed her love for travel and new cultures. She started her own blog and eventually joined The Points Guy. Since then, she’s contributed to Business ...
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A long-time points and miles student, Jessica is the former Personal Finance Managing Editor at U.S. News and World Report and is passionate about helping consumers fund their travels for as little ca...
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Are you an active-duty military member or about to become one? When joining the armed forces, you are entitled to certain financial benefits. These benefits protect servicemembers from financial distress while protecting the nation — and some of the perks are pretty stellar.

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) is one such regulation. It applies to the debt you acquired before you joined the military. Let’s examine the SCRA, how it works, and how to request your SCRA benefits.

What Is the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)?

Initially published in 1940, the SCRA was created to help relieve servicemembers’ financial distress. It offers various protections to active-duty military personnel, including capped interest rates and a moratorium on foreclosures.

While these benefits are useful, the SCRA only applies to debt acquired before becoming active duty. If you’ve already activated, any new debt you accrue will be subject to the Military Lending Act (MLA), a similar but less comprehensive regulation.

Who Qualifies for the SCRA?

Not everyone qualifies for the SCRA benefits, including those in ROTC or academy cadets. Reserve and National Guard members must also meet specific requirements to claim relief via the SCRA.

Here’s who makes the cut:

  • Activeduty members of the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Space Force, and Coast Guard
  • Members of the Reserve component when serving on active duty
  • Members of the National Guard component mobilized under federal orders for more than 30 consecutive days
  • Active-duty commissioned officers of the Public Health Service or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Bottom Line:

Not everyone qualifies for the SCRA. For those who are eligible, debts acquired before entering active duty become protected.

Benefits of the SCRA

So, what kinds of benefits do you receive from the SCRA? The act offers quite a few perks:

  • Caps Interest Rates on Debt at 6%: This is true for all types of loans acquired before entering active service, including credit cards, auto loans, student loans, and home loans.
  • Protects Against Default Judgments in Civil Cases: This protection applies when you’re being civilly sued and forbids any default judgment against you. In other words, you can’t be automatically judged at fault for not showing up to the case.
  • Protects Against Foreclosure on Your Home: This protection forces lenders to obtain a court order before foreclosing on your property.
  • Protections Against Repossession of Your Property: As it sounds, lenders cannot repossess your property, including a car, without a court order.
  • Termination of Residential Housing and Automobile Leases Without Penalty: This benefit can be especially helpful to those needing to break a lease when called to active duty, as it allows you to do so without penalty.
Hot Tip:

Those who signed a lease while on active duty and have received a permanent change of station (PCS) order or an order for a deployment of more than 90 days can also terminate their leases without penalty.

Although waived annual fees aren’t explicitly stated as an SCRA benefit, they pair with the 6% interest rate. Annual fee premiums are calculated as part of the 6% rate, and lenders must waive annual fees to meet regulations.

Applying for SCRA Benefits

How do you complete your application if you have an account eligible for SCRA benefits? The process varies depending on the bank but can usually be done online, by fax, mail, or phone.

Since SCRA benefits only apply to cards you’ve already opened before joining the military, applying for benefits is a manual process. This is in contrast to using MLA benefits, which can be applied automatically.

To request SCRA benefits with American Express, for example, you’ll first need to log in to your account. From there, navigate to Account Services at the top of the page, then click Credit Management.

Select SCRA Benefits to be presented with Amex’s SCRA benefits request page.

Amex SCRA Request
Image Credit: American Express

Once you’ve applied, Amex will review your account to determine if you’re eligible. If you are, you’ll immediately start receiving the benefits, such as that 6% interest rate and waived annual fees.

The process is essentially the same for other banks and lenders, though you’ll need to contact each one individually to see how they review applications.

Best Cards for SCRA

So, which cards are best for servicemembers eligible for SCRA benefits? As you can expect with the Military Lending Act (MLA), ideal SCRA cards are the best credit cards available. These cards have the biggest benefits, such as annual credits, top-tier elite status, lounge access, and more.

Best SCRA Cards for General Travel

Do you want to expand your travel opportunities with a credit card? This site is all about maximizing your points and miles, and credit cards can be a large part of that. While there are hotel and airline-specific cards, some of the best options tend to be general-use travel cards.

General-use travel credit cards earn flexible point currencies, so the points they earn can be converted into multiple types of points or miles.

The most popular flexible point currencies are American Express Membership Rewards, Bilt Rewards, Capital One Miles, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy.

We’ll detail 2 of the best cards for general travel. Acquire these cards before you join the military or become active duty to be eligible for SCRA benefits.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

BEST LOUNGE ACCESS
The Platinum Card® from American Express
The Platinum Card® from American Express
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

The Amex Platinum reigns supreme for luxury travel, offering the best airport lounge access plus generous statement credits, and complimentary elite status.

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

The Platinum Card® from American Express
The Amex Platinum reigns supreme for luxury travel, offering the best airport lounge access plus generous statement credits, and complimentary elite status.
Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on eligible purchases on the Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
80,000 points
$1,760
$695
See Pay Over Time APR
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

When it comes to cards that offer top-notch benefits, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better card than The Platinum Card® from American Express.

Make no mistake — the Amex Platinum card is a premium card with a premium price tag. With amazing benefits including best-in-class airport lounge access, hotel elite status, and tremendous value in annual statement credits, it can easily prove to be one of the most lucrative cards in your wallet year after year.

Pros
  • The best airport lounge access out of any card (by far) — enjoy access to over 1,400 worldwide lounges, including the luxurious Amex Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass lounges, Plaza Premium Lounges, and many more!
  • 5x points per dollar spent on flights purchased directly with the airline or with AmexTravel.com (up to $500,000 per year)
  • 5x points per dollar spent on prepaid hotels booked with AmexTravel.com
Cons
  • $695 annual fee (rates and fees)
  • Airline credit does not cover airfare (only incidentals like checked bags)
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on eligible purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Hotel Credit: Get up to $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two-night stay.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back in statement credits each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Disney+, a Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, and The Wall Street Journal. Enrollment required.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With complimentary access to more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more airport lounge options than any other credit card issuer on the market. As of 03/2023.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Save on eligible delivery fees, shipping, and more with a Walmart+ membership. Use your Platinum Card® to pay for a monthly Walmart+ membership and get up to $12.95 plus applicable taxes back on one membership (excluding Plus Ups) each month.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Platinum Card®.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only. Terms Apply.
  • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit: CLEAR® Plus helps to get you to your gate faster at 50+ airports nationwide and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your Membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Card. CLEARLanes are available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues.
  • Receive either a $100 statement credit every 4 years for a Global Entry application fee or a statement credit up to $85 every 4.5 year period for TSA PreCheck® application fee for a 5-year plan only (through a TSA PreCheck® official enrollment provider), when charged to your Platinum Card®. Card Members approved for Global Entry will also receive access to TSA PreCheck at no additional cost.
  • Shop Saks with Platinum: Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases in Saks Fifth Avenue stores or at saks.com on your Platinum Card®. That's up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
  • Unlock access to exclusive reservations and special dining experiences with Global Dining Access by Resy when you add your Platinum Card® to your Resy profile.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: See Pay Over Time APR
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

American Express Membership Rewards

The Amex Platinum card is a hefty beast. It charges a $695 annual fee (rates & fees) and offers hundreds of dollars per year in statement credits. In addition, it provides high-end perks such as hotel elite status, airport lounge access, and travel insurance.

Although the card doesn’t fare as well as others when it comes to travel earnings, it does have a standout feature: the ability to earn 5x Membership Rewards on flights booked directly with the airline or via AmexTravel.com (up to $500,000 per year, then 1x). This is the most generous return (11% return on your flight bookings) you’ll find anywhere, especially since we value Amex points at 2.2 cents each.

Amex Centurion ATL Living Room
Amex’s Centurion Lounges are some of the best places to spend your time in the airport. Centurion Lounge Atlanta. Image Credit: Chris Dong

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.

A top player in the high-end premium travel credit card space that earns 3x points on travel and dining while offering top luxury perks.
Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's worth $1,125 when redeemed through Chase Travel℠.
75,000 points
$1,500
$550
22.49%-29.49% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Excellent (740-850)

If you’re looking for an all-around excellent travel rewards card, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one of the best options out there.

The card combines elite travel benefits and perks like airport lounge access, with excellent point earning and redemption options.  Plus it offers top-notch travel insurance protections to keep you covered whether you’re at home or on the road.

Don’t forget the $300 annual travel credit which really helps to reduce the annual fee!

Pros
  • 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase TravelSM immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually
  • 10x points on Lyft purchases March 31, 2025
  • 10x points on Peloton equipment and accessory purchases over $250 through March 31, 2025
Cons
  • $550 annual fee
  • Does not offer any sort of hotel elite status
  • Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $1,125 toward travel when you redeem through Chase TravelSM.
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase TravelSM immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase TravelSM. For example, 75,000 points are worth $1125 toward travel.
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority PassTM Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Member FDIC
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 22.49%-29.49% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: $0
Rewards Center

Chase Ultimate Rewards

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card made waves when it debuted in 2016 thanks to its $300 annual travel credit and powerful Ultimate Rewards point system. With various Chase transfer partners, including Hyatt, Southwest, British Airways, and Virgin Atlantic, it’s easy to redeem any points you earn.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve card features one of the best airport lounge memberships, with a Priority Pass Select membership that grants access to airport lounges and experiences.

Aside from this, it also earns 3x Ultimate Rewards on all travel purchases, which makes this card an excellent all-around travel card.

Best SCRA Cards for Hotels

Whether you stay at hotels once a year or multiple times a month, having a hotel credit card can make your life easier. The best cards offer statement credits and top-tier elite status, though they’d generally charge a high annual fee.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

LIMITED TIME OFFER
Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

Automatic Hilton Diamond status, an annual free night, and a travel and resort credit make this the perfect card for those who stay in Hilton hotels.

All information about Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card has been collected independently by Upgraded Points.

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
Automatic Hilton Diamond status, an annual free night, and a travel and resort credit make this the perfect card for those who stay in Hilton hotels.
Earn 175,000 Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 7/31/2024.
175,000 points
$875
$550
20.99% - 29.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.


Paying hundreds of dollars for an annual fee on a co-branded hotel card might seem ridiculous, but you should know that the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is much more than your run-of-the-mill hotel credit card.

The Hilton Aspire card is not only a phenomenal card for Hilton Honors loyalists, but even those who visit Hilton hotels just a few times a year can still get excellent value out of all the benefits that are packed into this card.

So let’s have a look at what makes the card so valuable to travelers.

Pros
  • 14x points per $1 on Hilton purchases
  • 7x points per $1 on select travel and at U.S. restaurants
  • 3x points per $1 on all other purchases
Cons
    • High annual fee of $550
  • Earn 175,000 Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 7/31/2024.
  • Earn 14x Hilton Honors Bonus Points when you make eligible purchases on your card at participating hotels or resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Earn 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for eligible purchases: on flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com, on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies, and at U.S. restaurants.
  • Earn 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for other purchases on your card.
  • Enjoy up to $400 in Hilton Resort Credits (up to $200 in statement credits semi-annually) on your card each anniversary year when you stay at participating resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
  • Enjoy complimentary Diamond status.
  • $550 annual fee.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 20.99% - 29.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

One of our favorite hotel credit cards, the Hilton Aspire card, normally charges a $550 annual fee. In return, cardholders can get more than $750 in statement credits each year, Hilton Honors Diamond elite status, and an annual free night certificate. Put together, these far outweigh the cost, even if you don’t use SCRA benefits.

The statement credits include:

Hilton Honors Diamond elite status is also incredibly lucrative, with benefits such as suite upgrades, late checkout, and complimentary breakfast available to members.

Conrad Bora Bora overwater villa
The Hilton Aspire card’s up to $400 per year in resort credits can go pretty far toward costs like food and drink. Conrad Bora Bora. Image Credit: Carissa Rawson

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card
A premium card for Marriott fans who want perks like an annual statement credit and Free Night Award, plus a fast track to Marriott elite status.
Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
95,000 bonus points
$665
$650
20.99%-29.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card is a premium card designed with road warriors and Marriott Bonvoy loyalists in mind.

So is the card a worthwhile addition to your wallet?

Pros
  • 6x points per $1 at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 3x points per $1 on flights booked directly with airlines and restaurants worldwide
  • 2x points per $1 on all other purchases
Cons
  • Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • $300 Brilliant Dining Credit: Each calendar year, get up to $300 (up to $25 per month) in statement credits for eligible purchases made on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card at restaurants worldwide.
  • With Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status, you can receive room upgrades, including enhanced views or suites, when available at select properties and booked with a Qualifying Rate.
  • Earn 6X Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. 3X points at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines. 2X points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Free Night Award: Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 85,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Each calendar year after spending $60,000 on eligible purchases on your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, you will be eligible to select a Brilliant Earned Choice Award benefit. You can only earn one Earned Choice Award per calendar year. See https://www.choice-benefit.marriott.com/brilliant for Award options.
  • $100 Marriott Bonvoy Property Credit: Enjoy your stay. Receive up to a $100 property credit for qualifying charges at The Ritz-Carlton® or St. Regis® when you book direct using a special rate for a two-night minimum stay using your Card.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®: Receive either a statement credit every 4 years after you apply for Global Entry ($100) or a statement credit every 4.5 years after you apply for a five-year membership for TSA PreCheck® (up to $85 through a TSA PreCheck official enrollment provider) and pay the application fee with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Each calendar year with your Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card you can receive 25 Elite Night Credits toward the next level of Marriott Bonvoy® Elite status. Limitations apply per Marriott Bonvoy member account. Benefit is not exclusive to Cards offered by American Express. Terms apply.
  • Enroll in Priority Pass™ Select, which offers unlimited airport lounge visits to over 1,200 lounges in over 130 countries, regardless of which carrier or class you are flying. This allows you to relax before or between flights. You can enjoy snacks, drinks, and internet access in a quiet, comfortable location.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on international purchases.
  • With Cell Phone Protection, you can be reimbursed, the lesser of, your repair or replacement costs following damage, such as a cracked screen, or theft for a maximum of $800 per claim when your cell phone line is listed on a wireless bill and the prior month's wireless bill was paid by an Eligible Card Account. A $50 deductible will apply to each approved claim with a limit of 2 approved claims per 12-month period. Additional terms and conditions apply. Coverage is provided by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.
  • $650 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 20.99%-29.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

Marriott Bonvoy

Another American Express card, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card, charges a $650 annual fee (rates & fees). Like the Hilton Aspire card, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant card provides statement credits, a free night certificate, and elite status. It also offers airport lounge access with a Priority Pass Select membership.

However, the card’s statement credit is more limited, offering just up to $300 per year for dining purchases (up to $25 per month), and its status is Platinum Elite, which isn’t Marriott Bonvoy’s highest. That said, Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite members still enjoy complimentary breakfast and various other hotel perks with their status.

Best SCRA Cards for Airlines

Active-duty servicemembers already have quite a lot of lounge access while traveling, including entry to United and American lounges. However, to do so, you must be traveling in uniform, which can be uncomfortable. Our recommended cards provide lounge memberships and a variety of other benefits that can make air travel the best experience possible.

United Club℠ Infinite Card

United Club℠ Infinite Card
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

Perfect for frequent United flyers who want premium perks like United Club access and free baggage benefits.

Perfect for frequent United flyers who want premium perks like United Club access and free baggage benefits.
Earn 80,000 bonus miles after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Earn 80,000 bonus miles
$960
$525
21.99% - 28.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Excellent (740-850)

The United Club℠ Infinite Card is a premium card designed for the most dedicated of United frequent flyers who are looking for a card that provides the opportunity to earn extra United MileagePlus miles and receive lounge access via a yearly United Club membership.

United frequent flyers will find that the United Club Infinite card provides an enhanced experience on their United flights thanks to the money saved on each flight and the conveniences it provides.

Pros
  • 4x miles per $1 on United purchases
  • 2x miles per $1 on travel and dining purchases
  • Complimentary United Club membership
Cons
  • $525 annual fee
  • Does not earn transferable rewards
  • Earn 80,000 bonus miles after qualifying purchases
  • Earn 4 miles per $1 spent on United® purchases
  • Earn 2 miles per $1 spent on all other travel and dining
  • Earn 1 mile per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Free first and second checked bags - a savings of up to $320 per roundtrip (terms apply) - and Premier Access® travel services
  • 10% United Economy Saver Award discount within the continental U.S. and Canada
  • Earn up to 10,000 Premier qualifying points (25 PQP for every $500 you spend on purchases)
  • Member FDIC
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 21.99% - 28.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None

The most costly United credit card, the United Club Infinite card charges a $525 annual fee. Along with a United Club membership, cardholders gain numerous perks on United flights:

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

Delta loyalists will love the fast track to Delta elite status, lounge access, baggage benefits, and upgrade priority with the Delta Reserve card.

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
Delta loyalists will love the fast track to Delta elite status, lounge access, baggage benefits, and upgrade priority with the Delta Reserve card.
Earn 60,000 Bonus Miles after you spend $5,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
60,000 Bonus Miles
$720
$650
20.99%-29.99% Variable
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is a stellar option for frequent travelers who always fly with Delta thanks to its lounge access, status boost, annual companion certificate, and many other great benefits.

Here is a full look at everything the Delta Reserve card can offer to you to help you decide whether the card deserves a place in your wallet.

Pros
  • 3x SkyMiles per $1 on Delta purchases
  • 1x SkyMile per $1 on all other eligible purchases
  • Card Members get 15% off when using miles to book Award Travel on Delta flights.
Cons
  • $650 annual fee (rates & fees)
  • No bonus categories other than Delta purchases
  • Earn 60,000 Bonus Miles after you spend $5,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Reserve your piece of history with the new limited edition Boeing 747 Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card design.
  • Enjoy complimentary access to the Delta Sky Club® and bring up to two guests or immediate family members at a rate of $50 per person per visit when flying Delta. Effective 2/1/25, Reserve Card Members will receive 15 Visits per year to the Delta Sky Club; to earn an unlimited number of Visits each year starting on 2/1/25, the total eligible purchases on the Card must equal $75,000 or more between 1/1/24 and 12/31/24, and each calendar year thereafter.
  • Receive four Delta Sky Club® One-Time Guest Passes each year when you fly together on Delta. After that, you may bring up to two guests at a per-visit rate of $50 per person, per location.
  • Enjoy complimentary access to The Centurion® Lounge when you book a Delta flight with your Reserve Card.
  • Receive $2,500 Medallion® Qualification Dollars each Medallion Qualification Year and get closer to Status with MQD Headstart.
  • Earn $1 Medallion® Qualification Dollar for each $10 of purchases made on your Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card in a calendar year and get a boost toward achieving elevated Medallion Status for next Medallion Year.
  • Receive a Companion Certificate on First Class, Delta Comfort+®, or Main Cabin domestic, Caribbean, or Central American roundtrip flights each year after renewal of your Card. The Companion Ticket requires payment of government-imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights and no more than $250 for roundtrip international flights (both for itineraries with up to four flight segments). Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • $240 Resy Credit: With the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card Resy Credit, earn up to $20 per month in statement credits on eligible Resy purchases using your enrolled Card.
  • $120 Rideshare Credit: You can earn up to $10 back in statement credits each month on U.S. rideshare purchases with select providers after you pay with your Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card. Enrollment Required.
  • Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card Members get 15% off when using miles to book Award Travel on Delta flights through delta.com and the Fly Delta app. Discount not applicable to partner-operated flights or to taxes and fees.
  • With your Card receive upgrade priority over other Medallion Members within the same Medallion level and fare class.
  • Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card Members with an eligible ticket will be added to the Complimentary Upgrade list, after Delta SkyMiles Medallion Members.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $650 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 20.99%-29.99% Variable
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: None
Rewards Center

Delta SkyMiles Airline Loyalty Program

Delta doesn’t offer complimentary access to its Sky Clubs for military members, so if you frequent these lounges, you’ll want to consider the Delta Reserve card.

With a $650 annual fee (rates & fees), the card comes with a Delta Sky Club membership, allowing you entry when you fly with Delta. This is in addition to other benefits such as a free companion ticket on flights each year, plus:

Enrollment may be required for some of the statement credits mentioned above.

Delta Airbus A220 First Class Seats 3A 3B
The Delta Reserve card’s annual companion certificate includes first class flights. Image Credit: Greg Stone
Bottom Line:

Travel credit cards are some of the best options for those with SCRA benefits, thanks to the statement credits and perks that they provide, which can be worth thousands of dollars annually.

Best SCRA Card for Cash-Back

Most credit cards that earn cash-back don’t charge an annual fee, which means having SCRA benefits won’t do much aside from capping interest at 6%. However, there is 1 particular card that can be of benefit:

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

HIGHEST CASH BACK
Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
U.P. Rating 
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.

This card is great for those who want to earn cash-back with U.S. supermarkets, U.S. streaming subscriptions, transit, and U.S. gas stations.

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
This card is great for those who want to earn cash-back with U.S. supermarkets, U.S. streaming subscriptions, transit, and U.S. gas stations.
Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.
$250
$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.
19.24%-29.99% Variable,0% on purchases for 12 months
Upgraded Points credit ranges are a variation of FICO®Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit cardapplication.
Good to Excellent (670-850)

The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is a stellar cash-back credit card for those looking to maximize every purchase they make.

With bonus categories like U.S. supermarkets, select streaming services, U.S. gas stations, and transit purchases, this card rewards you for the items you spend the most on in a big way! For those looking to earn up to 6% cash-back on their purchases, this could be the card for you!

Pros
  • 6% cash-back at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 per year) and on select streaming services
  • 6% cash-back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions
  • 3% cash-back on U.S. gas stations and transit (including rideshares, parking, etc.)
Cons
    • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95 annual fee (rates and fees)
  • Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.
  • $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Buy Now, Pay Later: Enjoy $0 intro plan fees when you use Plan It® to split up large purchases into monthly installments. Pay $0 intro plan fees on plans created during the first 12 months from the date of account opening. Plans created after that will have a monthly plan fee up to 1.33% of each eligible purchase amount moved into a plan based on the plan duration, the APR that would otherwise apply to the purchase, and other factors.
  • Low Intro APR: 0% on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months from the date of account opening. After that, your APR will be a variable APR of 19.24% - 29.99%. Variable APRs will not exceed 29.99%.
  • 6% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 6% Cash Back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions.
  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations.
  • 3% Cash Back on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more).
  • 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit or at Amazon.com checkout.
  • Get up to $120 in statement credits annually when you pay for an auto-renewing subscription to Equinox+ at equinoxplus.com with your Blue Cash Preferred® Card. That’s $10 in statement credits each month. Enrollment required.
  • Thinking about getting the Disney Bundle which can include Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+? Your decision made easy with $7/month back in the form of a statement credit after you spend $9.99 or more each month on an eligible subscription (subject to auto renewal) with your Blue Cash Preferred® Card. Enrollment required.
  • Terms Apply.
Financial Snapshot
  • APR: 19.24%-29.99% Variable,0% on purchases for 12 months
  • Foreign Transaction Fees: 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.
Rewards Center

Redeem cash-back through your American Express account

The Amex Blue Cash Preferred card charges a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95 (rates & fees). It’s easy to see the value with the cash-back it earns and the statement credits it provides:

  • Up to $84 each year on The Disney Bundle
  • Up to $120 each year on Equinox+
  • 6% cash-back on groceries (up to $6,000 each year) and select streaming services
  • 3% back on transit and gas

Make sure you enroll your card first to enjoy your card’s statement credit benefits.

Final Thoughts

If you have accounts eligible for SCRA benefits, contact your bank to have those benefits applied. Remember that any new credit cards or debts you incur while in the service will fall under the Military Lending Act (MLA), which provides similar but less comprehensive benefits.

The information regarding the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® card, click here.
For rates and fees of Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the interest rate for the military SCRA?

The interest rate for debts protected by the SCRA is capped at 6%.

What is the SCRA during military service?

If you joined the military with existing debts, the SCRA offers protections. These include waiving annual fees on credit cards and capping interest rates at 6%.

How do I claim my SCRA benefits?

The way you’ll go about claiming your SCRA benefits depends on what bank you’re contacting. Generally speaking, this can be done online, by mail, or by phone.

What does SCRA stand for?

SCRA stands for the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which was created to help relieve servicemembers’ financial distress. It offers various protections to active-duty military personnel, including capped interest rates and a moratorium on foreclosures.

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About Carissa Rawson

Carissa served in the U.S. Air Force where she developed her love for travel and new cultures. She started her own blog and eventually joined The Points Guy. Since then, she’s contributed to Business Insider, Forbes, and more.

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