Best Western Rewards Credit Card Review: Basic Benefits and Yearly Bonus for No Annual Fee

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Best Western Rewards® Mastercard®

Best Western Rewards® Mastercard®

Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.
Rewards rate:

13 Points per $1 spent on Best Western purchases. 2 Points per $1 spent on other purchases.

  • Intro bonus: 40,000 Points
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Regular APR: 20.99% or 24.99% Variable APR
  • Recommended credit score: (No Credit History)

You can earn up to 16x points on Best Western stays with the Best Western Rewards Mastercard, but like other no annual fee co-branded hotel cards, you’ll get few rewards on purchases outside of Best Western spending. Cardholders also get perks like automatic Gold status, early check-in, late checkout and no foreign transaction fees. 

While Best Western Rewards may not be as popular as some other hotel loyalty programs, the brand has more than 4,700 hotels in more than 100 countries and territories around the world. Award nights with Best Western Rewards average about 16,000 points per night.

Pro Tip

While redeeming points for hotel stays is often the most valuable option, Best Western Rewards can also be converted to airline miles with programs like Air France / Flying Blue and Southwest Rapid Rewards.

At a Glance

  • Earn 40,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 within three billing cycles after account opening
  • Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $5,000 every 12 billing cycles
  • Earn up to 16x points on Best Western stays (10 points as a Best Western Rewards member and 6 points for using your card)
  • Earn 2x points on all other purchases
  • No annual fee
  • 20.99% or 24.99% variable APR, based on creditworthiness

Pros

  • Generous bonus offer plus yearly points bonus with annual spending requirement

  • No annual fee and no foreign transaction fees

  • Redeem rewards starting at 5,000 points per night

Cons

  • Higher tier properties can cost a lot of points (up to 70,000 points per night)

  • High APR

Additional Card Details

Within the Best Western Rewards program, you’ll get automatic Gold Status, which gives you benefits like a 10% points bonus per stay, room upgrades when available, early check-in and late checkout, and more. And in addition to the 40,000-point welcome bonus, you can earn additional 20,000-point bonuses every year you spend at least $5,000 using your card (equal to about $416 monthly).

And in addition to no annual fee, you’ll pay no foreign transaction fees when using this card, so you can spend outside the United States without any added charges. 

Should you get the Best Western Rewards Mastercard?

The Best Western Rewards Mastercard is best for leisure or business travelers who spend a lot of time in Best Western properties but don’t want to pay an annual fee for a credit card. Not only can you get automatic Gold status, but you can quickly rack up Best Western Rewards points on your paid hotel stays.

Award stays at Best Western properties can widely vary (from 5,000 to 70,000 points per night), but the brand says an average stay is 16,000 points per night. That means the welcome bonus could easily secure two free nights or more on average. 

This card also doles out 16x points per $1 spent (10x points for being a loyalty program member and 6x points for paying with the credit card) on Best Western stays, so just $1,000 in Best Western spending per year would net you another 16,000 Best Western points annually. Combined with the annual 20,000 bonus points you get for spending $5,000 on your card within 12 billing cycles, that’s 36,000 points, enough for at least two average award nights.

Still, consider whether the Best Western Rewards Mastercard is the best fit for your spending before you apply. If you don’t always stay with Best Western, a general no annual fee travel card like the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card might offer more flexibility in how you earn and redeem rewards. 

On the other hand, if you are loyal to Best Western brands and you travel frequently, the extra benefits of the Best Western Rewards® Premium Mastercard® — like Platinum Elite status and 40,000 points when you spend $5,000 within 12 billing cycles — might be worth the $89 annual fee. 

How to Use the Best Western Rewards Mastercard

Once you sign up for the Best Western Rewards Mastercard, you can score the 40,000-point bonus by spending $1,000 on purchases within three billing cycles of account opening. 

It may be helpful to charge all your spending to this card during the time it takes to secure the bonus, but you may want to reserve it for only hotel spending long-term because this card earns just 2x points on non-Best Western purchases. For your regular spending, there are plenty of cash back credit card or other rewards card options that offer much more value and flexibility.

Since you get 16x points per $1 on Best Western stays, you will want to use your Best Western Rewards Mastercard each time you stay with the brand. Plus, as a cardholder you’ll get 10% off room rates at Best Western properties, so you can save each time you book.

When you’re ready to redeem your rewards, you’ll get the most value from using points to book free nights at Best Western properties, but you can also use your points for charitable donations, shop online with certain retailers, or convert to airline points with partner airline programs.

As you use your Best Western Rewards Mastercard, make sure you only charge what you can afford and avoid carrying a balance. Whether you’re assigned the 20.99% or 24.99% APR, accruing interest at that rate can quickly wipe out any rewards you earn.

Best Western Rewards Mastercard Compared to Other Cards

  • Intro bonus:
    80,000 Points
  • Annual fee:
    $89
  • Regular APR:
    17.99% or 24.99% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit:
    (No Credit History)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.
Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Editor’s Score: (3.0/5)
  • Intro bonus:
    25,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $0
  • Regular APR:
    13.99% – 23.99% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Editor’s Score: (4.5/5)
  • Intro bonus:
    100,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $95
  • Regular APR:
    15.99% – 22.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site.

Bottom Line

EDITORIAL INDEPENDENCE

As with all of our credit card reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships.

The Best Western Rewards Mastercard is a basic hotel rewards card with no annual fee. You won’t get many high-value travel benefits, and there’s no annual free night award, but you can secure 20,000 bonus points by spending at least $5,000 annually and earn a great rate on Best Western spending.

Before you apply, make sure you evaluate how much value you’ll get from this co-branded card compared to a more flexible travel credit card option or a card within another hotel brand’s rewards program.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many points do you need for a free night with Best Western?

Free nights with Best Western Rewards start at just 5,000 points, yet higher tier properties can set you back up to 70,000 points per night.

What kind of hotels can you book with Best Western hotel points?

Hotel brands you can book with your rewards include basic Best Western properties to more premium WorldHotels Luxury, WorldHotels Elite, WorldHotels Distinctive and WorldHotels Crafted Collections.

Does Best Western Rewards let you turn points to airline miles?

You can transfer Best Western Rewards to an array of airline partners including Aeroplan, Alaska MileagePlan, Asia Miles, Asiana Airlines, Air France / Flying Blue, LifeMiles, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Aeromexico, Aer Lingus, Alitalia, British Airways, Iberia Plus and Vueling Club.