Disclosure: We get a commission for links on the blog. You don’t have to use our links, but we’re very grateful when you do. American Express, Barclaycard, Chase, and US Bank are Million Mile Secrets advertising partners. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by our partners. Here’s our Advertiser Disclosure.
Million Mile Secrets reader, Ali, tweeted:
Which is the best credit card to use to pay for airport parking?
When you travel frequently, airport parking gets expensive! So it’s a good idea to make sure you’re getting rewarded for your spending by paying with the right card!
Find out why I recommend using the Chase Sapphire Preferred card to pay for parking and what other cards give you bonus points for parking expenses!
What’s the Best Card to Use for Airport Parking?
Link: Chase Sapphire Preferred
The best card to use for your spending is typically the card you’re working to finish the minimum spending requirements on. That’s because credit card sign-up bonuses are almost always worth the most. Ali, as you get more advanced in our hobby, you’ll often find yourself working on a new sign-up bonus.
That said, if you are NOT working towards your next sign-up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great option for your parking expenses.
With the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, Ali will earn 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1 he spends on parking.
Plus, he’ll also earn 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on his flight, hotel stay, meals, and more while he’s traveling!
Here’s a look at benefits you get with this card:
- 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points when you spend $4,000 on purchases within the 1st 3 months of opening your account
- 5,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points when you add an authorized user who makes a purchase within the 1st 3 months of opening your account
- 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel (including parking) & dining
- 1X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on all other purchases
There’s a $95 annual fee, but it’s waived for the 1st year. This gives you the chance to try out the card for ~10 months to see if it’s worth the annual fee. I’ve gladly paid the annual fee on this card for many years!
And if you decide to cancel, you don’t have to worry about a lot of hassle. It’s as easy as a quick call or you can send a secure message through your online account.
- Cash back at 1 cent per point
- Travel booked through the Chase Travel Portal at 1.25 cents per point
- Or transfer to airline and hotel partners for Big Travel with Small Money!
The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is the only personal card that gives you the ability to transfer to Chase Ultimate Rewards travel partners like United Airlines and Hyatt.
Other Cards That Earn Points on Parking
You can also earn miles, points, and cash back on parking with cards such as:
- Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard – 2 Barclaycard Arrival miles per $1 spent on all purchases (2.1% cash back when redeemed for travel purchases of $100+). This is good for folks who plan to spend at least $100 at a time on airport parking and prefer a statement credit.
- Citi ThankYou Premier – 3X Citi ThankYou points on travel (including parking, airfare, hotels, gas, and more!)
This is more than the 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points you’ll earn with the Chase Sapphire Preferred. But not all points are worth the same amount! For most folks, Citi’s travel partners aren’t as useful as Chase Ultimate Rewards partners.
But if you intend to redeem the points to buy flights at 1.25 cents per point through the Citi portal, this beats the Chase Sapphire Preferred’s 1.25 cents per point through the Chase portal because you’ll earn 3 Citi ThankYou points per $1 spent instead of 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
If you have to pay to park your car at the airport when you’re traveling, using the Chase Sapphire Preferred card can earn you 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points.
The great thing about Chase Ultimate Rewards points is there are so many ways to redeem your points. And with the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, you can transfer to airline and hotel partners for Big Travel!
Thanks your question, Ali!