When it comes to finding a no annual fee airline card, you have a small amount to choose from. These cards will typically earn you lower rewards and offer the least amount of perks compared to their annual fee counterparts, but can still be worth it if it fits your spending profile.
No Annual Fee Airline Cards
There's only a few airline cards that have no annual fee. Those cards are listed in the table below.
Listed below are a few great options worth considering if you're looking for a no-annual fee airline card.
Barclays JetBlue Card
The no-annual fee Barclays JetBlue Card earns 3 JetBlue Points per $1 spent on JetBlue, 2 points per $1 spent at restaurants and grocery stores, and 1 point per $1 on everything else. It offers 50% off in-flight (in the form of a statement credit) for purchases of cocktails and food purchases.
Citi AAdvantage MileUp Card
The Citi AAdvantage MileUp Card is a great no-annual fee card that earns 2 AAdvantage Miles per $1 spent on American Airlines and grocery purchases. If offers 25% off in-flight puchases (in the form of a statement credit).
Delta SkyMiles Blue AMEX Card
Delta offers it's own no-annual fee card called the Delta SkyMiles Blue AMEX Card. It earns 2 Delta SkyMiles per $1 spent on Delta Airlines and restaurant purchases and 1 SkyMile per $1 on everything else. The card offers 20% off in-flight purchases, access to Delta's Pay with Miles, and ShopRunner membership.
United Gateway Card
United offers the United Gateway Card if you're looking to earn United Miles without paying an annual fee. The card earns 2 United Miles per $1 spent on United, gas station, and transit purchases. All other purchases earn 1 mile per $1 spent. Card benefits include 25% off in-flight purchases, access to the Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection, and some pretty great travel and purchase protection (especially for a card with no annual fee).
Free Spirit Travel Mastercard
The Free Spirit Travel Mastercard is a no-annual fee card that earns 2 Spirit Points per $1 spent with Spirit and 1 point per $1 spent on everything else. It comes with a good amount of benefits including bonus points after spending $10,000 during the year, access to point pooling, 25% in-flight savings on food and beverage purchases, and Zone 2 boarding.
If you have no interest in the cards above or you would prefer to earn rewards that aren't tied to a specific airline, there's a great amount of no-annual-fee options you can choose from. Some of my top picks for spending tied specifically to airfare include:
- Bank of America Cash Rewards Card
- Earn 3% cash back on a category of your choosing with airfare being one of the possible categories.
- Earn up to a 75% bonus based on how much money you have invested with Bank of America for up to 5.25% back on airfare spend.
- Wells Fargo Propel AMEX Card
- Earns 3 Go Far Rewards Points per $1 spent on travel (includes gas), dining, and streaming services.
- Points are worth 1 cent each meaning this is equal to a 3% return when spending across bonus categories.
- Pair this with the no-annual fee Wells Fargo Visa Signature Card to bump up the point value to 1.5 cents each for a 4.5% return across bonus categories and 1.5% on all non-category spend.
- Citi Double Cash
- Earn 2% cash back on all purchases; 1% back on the purchase and 1% back when you pay off that purchase.
- Straighforward and simple 2% cash back card which makes for easy redemptions.
- Earned cash back can be converted to ThankYou Rewards Points which gives the card significantly more value.
- Citi Costco Anywhere Card
- Earns 4% back on gas, 3% back on travel and restaurant, 2% back with Costco, and 1% back on everything else.
- If you already shop at Costco, this is a great way to easily maximize your Costco Rewards on travel spend.
If you want to calculate which credit cards earn you the best return across airline spend, you can check out the Best Credit Cards For Airline Purchases calculator. If you want to find the best cards across any category of spend, you can check out our most popular tool Search For Credit Cards By Spend.
Best Cards By Spend Calculator
The Best Credit Cards By Spend Calculator will find the best credit cards based on the spend and selected filter options. Results will be sorted by net return which is the average value of the total rewards earned, plus annual credits, and minus annual fees. For any of the results listed, you can click on 'More Info' to calculate more accurate results. You'll be able to enter spend for as many categories as you want, toggle annual fees, add authorized users, specific elite status and memberships, incorporate sign up and welcome bonus, view rewards as if you transferred them to partners, and much more.