Book with Airbnb? Here are the best credit cards for July 2022

With summer in full swing, it’s time to book Airbnb accommodation for your next trip. Through the Airbnb app or website, you can browse private travel accommodations that suit your schedule and budget, with a wide variety of locations available. But between the stay itself, cleaning, and other fees, the cost can add up quickly. However, some credit cards can help stretch your Airbnb budget.

Although there are no Airbnb-specific credit cards like there are hotel credit cardswe’ve rounded up the best loyalty cards to optimize your Airbnb bookings.

Best Overall Credit Card for Airbnb Stays

Introductory offerN / A

APR13.50% – 20.50% variable

Intro Purchase APRN / A

Recommended credit Excellent/Good Credit

Reward rate
  • Earn 2x points on every dollar spent
  • Earn 3x the points on every dollar spent that year when you spend $15,000 or more in a year
  • 4X points for 30 days for each friend you invite who receives the card

Annual feesNone

APR balance transfer13.50% – 20.50% variable

Balance Transfer Fee 2% of the amount of each transfer.

APR Penalty None

  • Earn 2x points on every dollar spent
  • Earn 3x the points on every dollar spent that year when you spend $15,000 or more in a year
  • 4X points for 30 days for each friend you invite who receives the card

Our opinion

The X1* Card has the highest potential rewards rate on Airbnb purchases, and it has no annual fee. The base rewards rate with this card is 2x points per dollar, but there are ways to earn more. You can earn 3x points on all your purchases for the year if you spend at least $15,000 in the year, and you can earn 4x points for 30 days for each successful candidate you refer.

Once you’ve earned your points, if you redeem them for cash back, they’re only worth 0.7 cents per point. However, with Airbnb and a handful of other major brands, including United Airlines and Hotels.com, you can redeem them for 1 cent per point. This means you can earn up to 4% rewards on your spend to apply to future Airbnb stays. If you don’t often stay with Airbnbs and can’t take advantage of these branded deals, a different card on this list may make more sense.

See the full list of exchange partners and other benefits in our X1 review.

Use this welcome bonus for Airbnb

Introductory offerEarn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. It’s $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

APR16.74% – 23.74% variable

Intro Purchase APRN / A

Recommended credit Excellent/Good

Reward rate
  • 5x on trips purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 3x on meals.
  • 2x on all other travel purchases, and more.

Annual fees$95

APR balance transfer16.74% – 23.74% variable

Balance Transfer Fee Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

Foreign transaction fees $0

APR Penalty Up to 29.99%

  • 5x on trips purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 3x on meals.
  • 2x on all other travel purchases, and more.

Our opinion

Airbnb stays can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars. So if you use this card to book your next Airbnb, the total cost can help you meet the spending threshold ($4,000) to earn this card’s particularly attractive welcome bonus within the first three months of opening. Account. You can then use the welcome bonus, 60,000 bonus points, as a $600 statement credit towards your next Airbnb vacation – or as $750 to book additional travel accommodations through Chase Ultimate Rewards, the travel booking portal from Chase, for your daily excursions and car rentals.

Plus, you’ll earn 2x rewards on all your travel purchases with this card, and that includes Airbnb bookings.

For more information on this travel credit card, check out our full Chase Sapphire Preferred review.

Introductory offerEarn a $200 cash rewards bonus after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months

APR16.49%, 21.49% or 26.49% Variable APR

Intro Purchase APR0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening

Recommended credit Excellent, good

Reward rate
  • Earn unlimited 2% cash rewards on purchases

Annual fees$0

Intro Balance Transfer APR0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening on eligible balance transfers

APR balance transfer16.49%, 21.49% or 26.49% Variable APR

Balance Transfer Fee up to 5%; minimum: $5

Foreign transaction fees 3%

APR Penalty None

  • Earn unlimited 2% cash rewards on purchases

Our opinion

The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is the only card on this list that offers an introductory APR, giving you more time to pay for your trip over time without incurring interest charges. Just make sure you can cover the minimum payment on time each month and pay the balance in full by the end of the promotional period.

Active Cash is also best if you don’t want to think about reward categories and strategizing around your Airbnb reservation. You get a competitive 2% fixed reward rate on Airbnb and other purchases, plus a decent welcome bonus: a $200 cash welcome bonus after spending $1,000 in purchases in the last three first months following the opening of the account. That’s pretty good for a credit card with no annual fee.

For more details, see our full Wells Fargo Active Cash review.

Use your rewards for flights

Introductory offerEarn 45,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $2,000 on purchases with your new card in your first 6 months

APR17.49% – 24.49% variable

Intro Purchase APRN / A

Recommended credit Excellent/Good

Reward rate
  • 3X Membership Rewards® Points on restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery.
  • 3X points on public transport including trains, buses, ferries, metro etc.
  • 3X points on travel including airfare, hotels, cruises, tours, car rentals, etc.
  • 1X points on other purchases

Annual fees$150

Late payment fees Up to $40

Foreign transaction fees None

APR Penalty See rates and fees

  • 3X Membership Rewards® Points on restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery.
  • 3X points on public transport including trains, buses, ferries, metro etc.
  • 3X points on travel including airfare, hotels, cruises, tours, car rentals, etc.
  • 1X points on other purchases

Our opinion

Instead of earning rewards to cover the cost of your Airbnb rental, you can also use a credit card to pay for your Airbnb stay which will earn you the best rewards on airfare and other travel expenses to your Airbnb destination. The American Express® Green Card lets you earn 3x the points on your travel purchases – including Airbnbs – and can be redeemed for 1 cent per point when you book flights through amextravel.com or directly with a company Aerial.

This is a 3% return on Airbnb purchases towards qualifying flights, a rewards rate equivalent to general travel purchases with the premium Chase Sapphire Reserve® card, but without spending as much on the annual fee. If you prefer direct cash back, the green card’s 0.6 cents per point credit redemption rate isn’t worth it. Try the Wells Fargo Active Cash card instead.

Read more: How much are Amex Membership Rewards points worth?

FAQs

Can you cancel an Airbnb reservation and get a refund?

Each Airbnb listing has its own designated cancellation policy ranging from “flexible” to “super strict”. More flexible policies allow for risk-free cancellation closer to the reservation date. Moderate policies may only give you a partial refund as your booking date gets closer, while more stringent policies require full payment up front with no refund. Airbnb Cancellation Policies are also listed on its website.

When is your credit card charged for Airbnb reservations?

You have 24 hours to cancel your reservation before your credit card is charged, regardless of the cancellation policy chosen by the host. The amount you’ll be charged upfront depends on the listing’s cancellation policy and whether or not you opt into a payment plan. For moderate listings, you may be charged part of the reservation cost after 24 hours, and the remaining balance will be charged as you get closer to your stay.

Does Airbnb offer interest-free financing?

For some trips, Airbnb offers a payment plan. There are a few eligibility requirements, but the main ones are that your trip is at least 14 days in the future, no longer than 28 days (longer bookings will require an upfront fee), and are not for work. You can choose the payment plan option at checkout and choose between two and 12 equal monthly installments to pay off the cost of your reservation beyond your travel date. Alternatively, the best 0% APR introductory credit cards may offer longer promotional financing terms.

Our approach to credit card evaluation

CNET examines credit cards comprehensively comparing them across defined criteria developed for each major card category, including cash back, welcome bonus, travel rewards and balance transfer. We examine the typical spending behaviors of a range of consumer profiles knowing that everyone’s financial situation is different, as are the designated functions of different credit cards.

*All information on the X1 card has been independently collected by CNET and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

Editorial content on this page is based solely on objective, independent assessments by our editors and is not influenced by advertising or partnerships. It was not supplied or commissioned by a third party. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products or services offered by our partners.

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