Barclays Introduces Travel Rewards Card with 25,000 Bonus Miles Every Year
Barclays is launching a new travel rewards card that has something rather unique in the credit card industry: an opportunity for bonus rewards every year. Qualified applicants can earn 25,000 loyalty points every year after spending at least $25,000 on their Barclays Arrival® Premier World Elite Mastercard®.
A recent study revealed travel cards now offer an average introductory bonus of 40,556 points, but that is only available for the first year. After year one, cardholders must decide if the annual fee and other costs associated with the card are worth the rewards they can earn.
The Barclays Arrival card comes with a $150 annual fee, but it offers these additional incentives:
- 2X miles for all purchases, in addition to the 25,000 point annual bonus
- No foreign transaction fee
- Miles transfers to participating loyalty programs
- $0 fraud liability protection
- $100 statement credit every five years, applicable to one Global Entry fee
- Free FICO credit scores
- Travel accident insurance, trip cancellation coverage, baggage delay coverage, and other travel protections
Barclays’ yearly bonus offer may be an effort to combat credit card churning. This occurs when a person signs up for a travel rewards card just to earn the introductory bonus. After cashing in the bonus, a churner will cancel the card before having to pay the annual fee for year two, and move on to another travel offer. Issuers of travel cards rely on repeat annual fees to absorb the cost of their introductory offers, so credit card churners threaten their bottom line.
Chase made a notable effort to discourage credit card churning with the launch of their Sapphire Reserve Card. The card, which boasted a 100,000 point bonus at the time, would not be available to anyone who had opened five or more bank cards in the previous 24 months. This is commonly known as the 5/24 rule. Chase has since dropped the bonus offer to 50,000 points with the same $450 annual fee, but the rules against rewards chasers still apply.