Few credit card rewards and perks are more valuable than sign-up bonuses – also known as welcome offers, early spend bonuses, or new cardmember bonuses, depending on the issuer.
Every month, we sift through dozens of new and existing credit card sign-up bonus offers – some worth $1,000 or more – and present the very best here.
If you’re looking for a credit card that rewards you from the moment you sign up, or at least within a few months, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with these great new cardmember bonuses for this month.
Best Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses (December 2022)
These are the best credit card sign-up bonuses, welcome offers, and early spend bonuses available right now. Each stands out for at least one reason, whether that’s something to do with the bonus itself or the underlying card.
Best Overall: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
In large part, that’s down to its generous sign-up bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points, worth up to $750 on travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards, when you spend at least $4,000 within 3 months.
But there’s a lot more to Sapphire Preferred — enough to make it our top overall pick for best sign-up bonus credit card. The rewards program definitely deserves mention:
- 5 points total per $1 spent on eligible travel purchases made through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal after exhausting the $50 annual Ultimate Rewards hotel credit
- 3 points per $1 spent on eligible restaurant purchases, including dine-in and takeout, as well as select streaming service purchases and online grocery purchases
- 2 points per $1 spent on all other eligible travel purchases
- 1 point per $1 spent on most other eligible purchases
As do these other clutch features:
- Get $0.0125 per point when you redeem for travel at the Ultimate Rewards portal, turning (for example) 60,000 points into $750 in airfare, hotel stays, car rentals, and other travel items
- Transfer points to Southwest Airlines and other major travel loyalty programs at a favorable 1-to-1 ratio
- Get a $50 annual hotel credit on eligible purchases
- Qualify for VIP packages, early access, exclusive deals, and concierge treatment at entertainment and sporting events, including the PGA Championship
- Enjoy complimentary Visa-backed perks like trip cancellation/interruption coverage, rental car coverage, baggage delay insurance, extended warranty protection, and more
Best for First-Year Spending: Chase Freedom® Unlimited Credit Card
The Chase Freedom Unlimited Card pairs an attractive sign-up bonus with a solid cash-back program. And it’s one of the few cards on this list with a sign-up bonus extending longer than three months from account opening.
How does it work? During the first year your account is open, you’ll earn an additional 1.5% cash back on all eligible purchases (up to the first $20,000) spent. That means:
- 6.5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, travel, gift cards and more
- 4.5% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service
- 3% on all other purchases
After the first year or first $20,000 spent, the regular cash-back rate kicks in. You don’t have to worry about rotating categories here or caps on cash-back earnings either.
- Redeem your points for a statement credit, bank account deposit, gift cards from select retailers, and merchandise purchases made through the Ultimate Rewards portal
- Enjoy a 15-month, 0% APR promotion for purchases and balance transfers, after which regular variable APR applies, currently 17.99% to 26.74% APR
- After the first year or first $20,000 in eligible purchases, most regular qualifying purchases earn unlimited 1.5% cash back
- Travel purchases made through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal earn 5% cash back every day
- Drugstore and dining purchases (including takeout and delivery) earn 3% cash back
- No annual fee
Best Annual Travel Credit: Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card
This offer is no longer available.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card is an ultra-exclusive travel rewards card for frequent travelers who like to jet, stay, and play in style.
The sign-up bonus is certainly worth writing home about. Spend at least $4,000 in qualifying purchases within 3 months to earn 80,000 bonus Ultimate Rewards points. That’s worth up to $1,200 when redeemed for airfare, hotels, and other travel purchases through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.
But the standout feature might well be the $300 annual travel credit, which more than halfway offsets the card’s $550 annual fee. Chase automatically applies it to any eligible travel purchase: hotel stays, airfare, rental cars, and more.
- Earn unlimited 3 Ultimate Rewards points per $1 spent on most travel and all eligible dining purchases
- Earn 1 point per $1 spent on everything else
- Eligible air travel and hotel and car rental purchases made through Chase Travel earn 5 and 10 total points per $1 spent, respectively
- Points are worth $0.015 when redeemed for travel — 50% better than most general-purpose travel rewards cards
- Transfer your points at a 1-to-1 ratio to about a dozen travel loyalty programs, including Southwest Rapid Rewards and United MileagePlus
- Enjoy free entry privileges at more than 1,300 airport lounges worldwide with a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership
- Take advantage of exclusive rental car discounts and perks with National and other major brands
- Enjoy special welcome gifts and credits at participating hotels
Best for Free Hotel Stays: Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card from Chase
The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card’s sign-up bonus is very generous: Earn 3 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after qualifying purchases.
Combined with another free night each year after your account anniversary — good for any Marriott property requiring 35,000 or fewer points for a free night — this is the best credit card for complimentary hotel stays.
- Earn up to 17x points for every $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels worldwide
- Earn unlimited 2x points per $1 spent on all other purchases, with no spending caps in either category
- Regular season award night redemptions begin at 7,500 points for low-cost Category 1 properties
- Automatically qualify for Silver Elite Status as a cardholder in good standing
- The annual fee is $95
- There’s no foreign transaction fee
- Spend at least $35,000 in eligible purchases in a calendar year to qualify for Gold Elite Status, with benefits including flexible check-out and a 25% boost to base point earnings on paid stays
Best for Frequent Flyers: Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card, the business equivalent of Delta SkyMiles Platinum Credit Card, has a very attractive welcome offer.
Here’s how it works: Earn 60,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion(R) Qualification Miles (MQMs) after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership.
Moving forward, you can take advantage of a generous rewards program that gives preference to purchases made with Delta and most hotels — and large purchases in general — along with Status Boost, which may qualify you for bonus MQM earnings throughout the year. Terms and conditions apply – see rates and fees.
- Earn 3 SkyMiles per $1 spent on eligible Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels
- Earn 1 SkyMile per $1 spent on other eligible purchases, except 1.5 SkyMiles per $1 spent (up to 50,000 additional miles) on purchases over $5,000
- With Status Boost, spend at least $25,000 in qualifying purchases in a calendar year to earn 10,000 bonus Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs)
- Spend another $25,000 in qualifying purchases ($50,000 total qualifying spend) to earn another 10,000 bonus MQMs, for a total potential annual spending bonus of 20,000 MQMs
- The annual fee is $250
- Enjoy Delta perks like Main Cabin 1 priority boarding, 20% off in-flight purchases, a free checked bag, and more
- Terms and Conditions Apply: See rates and fees
Best for Hotel Elite Status: IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card
The IHG® Rewards Premier Card has an easily attainable sign-up bonus worth more than 10 award nights at participating IHG hotels. Earn 140,000 bonus points when you spend at least $3,000 on eligible purchases during your first 3 months of cardmembership. This is worth more than 10 free nights at lower-tier IHG properties.
Not satisfied with your initial score? Moving forward, this card earns up to 26 IHG Rewards points total per $1 spent at Intercontinental Hotel Group hotels, including Holiday Inn and Staybridge Suites. Eligible purchases of travel and at gas stations and restaurants earn 5 points per $1 spent.
All other eligible purchases earn 3 points per $1 spent, with no spending caps or restrictions. Redeem points for award nights at participating IHG properties, starting at 10,000 points.
- $99 annual fee
- No fees for foreign transactions
- Get 1 reward night per year at select IHG hotels after your account anniversary
- Earn 10,000 bonus points when you spend at least $20,000 and make an additional purchase in a calendar year
- As long as your account remains open and in good standing, you’ll qualify for Platinum Elite status, with benefits including a 50% bonus to base point earnings, priority check-in where available, and complimentary room upgrades where available
Best for Big Spenders: Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card
The Marriott Bonvoy Business Card has a fantastic welcome offer: Welcome Offer: Earn 75,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
Moving forward, earn 4 points per $1 spent on eligible purchases made at restaurants worldwide and U.S. gas stations, on wireless telecom purchases made directly with U.S. providers, and on shipping. Earn 2 points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases. Terms and conditions apply — see rates & fees.
- Earn 6 points for every $1 of eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels
- Eligible purchases made at restaurants worldwide, U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly with U.S. providers, and U.S. shipping purchases earn 4 points per $1 spent
- All other eligible purchases earn 2 points per $1 spent
- $125 annual fee
- No foreign transaction fees (see rates and fees)
- Enjoy complimentary Gold Elite Status in the Marriott Bonvoy program
- Get 1 free award night at participating properties per year after your cardmember anniversary (redemption level at or below 35,000 points)
- Get a second free award night after you spend at least $60,000 in eligible purchases in a calendar year (also with a redemption level at or below 35,000 points)
- Terms and Conditions Apply: See rates & fees
Best for Mixing Business and Leisure Travel: Hilton Honors American Express Business Card
The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card has one of the best welcome offers of any business credit card.
Limited time offer: Earn 130,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $5,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors Business Card in the first 3 Months of Card Membership. Plus, you can earn a Free Night Reward after you spend $10,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors Business Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 12/21/22. Terms apply.
Moving forward, this card has a great ongoing rewards program that earns:
- 12 Hilton Honors points per $1 spent on eligible purchases made directly with hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio
- 6 points per $1 spent on select eligible business purchases, including purchases at U.S. gas stations, wireless communications purchases made directly with U.S. providers, and U.S. purchases of shipping
- 6 points per $1 spent on select partner travel purchases, including flights booked directly with airlines or Amex Travel and car rental purchases made directly with car rental companies
- 6 points per $1 spent on U.S. restaurant purchases.
- 3 points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases.
- All eligible Hilton Honors American Express Business cardholders enjoy complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status, with benefits like an 80% bonus on all base point earnings and complimentary room upgrades where available (terms apply)
- Spend $40,000 on eligible purchases with your card in a calendar year to earn Hilton Honors Diamond status through the end of the following calendar year
- $95 annual fee (see rates and fees)
- No foreign transaction fee
- Earn one free night reward after you spend $15,000 on your card in a calendar year
- Earn another free night reward after you spend an additional $45,000 on your card in the same calendar year (terms apply)
Best for Hyatt Fans: World of Hyatt Credit Card
The World of Hyatt Credit Card’s $95 annual fee is more than offset by an impressive two-part sign-up bonus worth up to 10 award nights with qualifying spending in the first six months.Earn 30,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 on eligible purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, earn 2 bonus points per $1 spent on purchases that earn 1 bonus point up to $15,000 in the first 6 months of account opening.
- Earn unlimited 4 bonus Hyatt points per $1 spent at Hyatt properties
- Redeem points beginning at 5,000 points per award night at basic Category 1 properties
- Get complimentary World of Hyatt Discoverist status as long as you remain a cardholder in good standing
- $95 annual fee
- No foreign transaction fees
Best Airline Travel Credit: Platinum Card® from American Express
If you’re fortunate enough to join the ranks of proud Platinum Card from American Express members, you’ll get an impressive welcome offer: Earn 80,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you spend at least $6,000 within six months of opening your account. That's worth up to $800 when redeemed for merchandise and certain other items at American Express's Membership Rewards® portal. Terms apply. Terms apply.
Depending on how they’re redeemed, Membership Rewards points are worth up to $0.01 apiece. You can redeem points for statement credits, Uber rides, and online purchases (including gift cards and airfare) through AmEx’s e-commerce portal or Amazon.
One additional benefit of this card really stands out: the annual airline fee credit. Each year your card account remains in good standing, you receive a $200 credit (payable as a statement credit to your Platinum Card) for incidental expenses, such as meals and drinks, with an airline of your choice. Enrollment is required to earn this benefit.
- Earn 5 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on airfare purchased directly with the airline, as well as prepaid hotel and airfare purchases made through the American Express Travel portal
- Other purchases earn 1 point per $1 spent
- Enjoy up to $200 in annual Uber credits
- Enjoy complimentary access to airport lounges worldwide
- Enjoy complimentary Gold/Gold Elite Status with Hilton Honors and Marriott Bonvoy as long as your account remains open and in good standing
- Terms apply for all these benefits
- $695 annual fee (see rates and fees)
- No foreign transaction fee
Best Cash-Back Credit Card: Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
The American Express Blue Cash Preferred Card has a generous welcome offer: Earn $350 back after you spend at least $3,000 on purchases within the first 6 months. Cash back accrues as Reward Dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits.
Going forward, Blue Cash Preferred has a great cash-back rewards program — in fact, it’s the best cash-back card on this list. You’ll earn:
- 6% cash back on select digital media and streaming services
- 6% cash back on supermarket purchases up to $6,000 in total purchases per year
- 3% cash back on purchases at U.S. gas stations
- 1% cash backon everything else
- Cash back accrues as Reward Dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits
- $95 annual fee (see rates and fees)
- Enjoy 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 billing cycles from account opening — after that, variable regular APR applies, currently 17.74% to 28.74%
Best for Car Buyers: My GM Rewards Card™
The My GM Rewards Card™ is a great rewards credit card for General Motors owners — and anyone planning to purchase a GM vehicle in the near future.
Customize your cardmember experience by choosing from one of five card designs: GM, Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, or Cadillac. Then gear up to earn unlimited 7x total points with GM purchases and 4x points on all other eligible purchases.*
Here’s what else you need to know about this card.
- Welcome Offer: Get 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in your first 3 months.*
- Earn Rate. Earn 7x total points with GM, 4x points on purchases everywhere else.* If you spend $12,000 a year, you will earn at least 48,000 points ($480) toward future redemption with GM.
- Introductory APR: Enjoy 0% intro APR on purchases for the first 12 months, then a variable APR of 17.99% to 27.99%.* Rates as of 10/1/2022.
- Key Fees: No annual fee, no foreign transaction fees, or cash advance fees. Late fees may apply.*
- Other Perks: See if you’re approved with no impact to your Credit Score. Accepting a card after your application is approved will result in a hard inquiry, which may impact your credit score.
Terms & Limitations Apply. Click here to see *Rates and Terms and Benefit Terms. Select ‘Apply Now’ to learn more about the product features, terms, conditions, and Program Rules. Subject to credit approval.
Best for Food and Entertainment Purchases: Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card
The Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards credit card has an easily attainable early spend bonus in line with the top bonuses for no-annual-fee cash back credit cards: Earn $200 after you spend $500 in eligible purchases in the first three months.
Moving forward, enjoy one of the best cash-back programs for people who love food and entertainment:
- Unlimited 3% cash back on streaming, dining, and grocery store purchases (except purchases at Target, Walmart, and other superstores)
- Eligible hotel and car rental bookings earn unlimited 5% cash back when made through Capital One Travel
- Most other eligible purchases earn unlimited 1% cash back
- No annual fee
- No foreign transaction fee
- Enjoy 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months from your account opening date — thereafter, variable regular APR applies
- Enjoy potential savings on prior purchases through Capital One Shopping, plus extended warranties on select purchased items (feature availability may vary by product)
Methodology: How We Choose the Best Credit Card Sign-up Bonuses
We use several important factors to assess credit card sign-up bonuses and choose the best for our users. All relate in some way to the overall value of the offers themselves or the cards offering them.
The actual value of the welcome offer is a critical determinant of a bonus’s worth. Generally speaking, more valuable bonuses are more attractive to users — though the factors below can make them more or less so.
Required Bonus Spend
If the required spend to earn a sign-up bonus is too much for your budget to bear, the bonus isn’t right for you. There’s no point in negating the value of a bonus (and then some) by overspending to earn it, then racking up interest charges that you can’t pay off for months or years.
Bonus Time Frame
The more time you have to earn a bonus, the better. The standard time frame is three months from account opening, but some stretch for four or even six months. A few choice sign-up bonuses linger for over a year.
Other Benefits for New Cardholders
The sign-up bonus shouldn’t be the only — or even the primary — reason to sign up for a new credit card. Other benefits for new cardholders, especially 0% APR promotions on purchases and balance transfers, can really add value.
Most credit cards with generous sign-up bonuses also earn ongoing rewards. Cash-back credit cards earn cash back, travel rewards cards earn travel loyalty points, and so on. The more generous the rewards program, the better.
Ongoing costs — especially annual fees and interest if you plan to carry a balance — can eat into the value of a sign-up bonus. Make sure you can avoid or at least minimize these costs if you plan to apply for a welcome offer.
Credit Card Welcome Offer FAQs
Still have questions about credit card welcome offers? You’re not alone. This is a tricky, complicated subject.
But we have answers. Here’s what you need to know about some of the most common issues that come up with early spend bonuses.
Can You Get More Than One Sign-up Bonus for the Same Card?
New cardmember bonuses are effectively single-use. Once you sign up for a credit card and take whatever action is required to obtain the bonus, that’s it for a while, possibly forever.
It’s possible that if you close your card account, wait a long time, and then reapply, you’ll be eligible for a new cardholder offer again. But you’ll have to wait at least a year, probably longer, and many issuers have a strict “one and done” rule.
How Many Credit Card Sign-up Bonuses Can You Get?
In one sense, there’s no strict limit. Some issuers have informal rules that effectively limit the number of bonuses you can earn in a particular period of time. For example, Chase’s 5/24 rule could limit you to five new Chase credit cards in any two-year span.
That said, it’s not a good idea to apply for too many credit cards all at once, new cardmember bonuses or not. Applying for multiple credit cards over a short period can harm your credit profile, lower your credit score, and make it harder to obtain affordable financing.
Are Credit Card Sign-up Bonuses Always Available?
Just like it’s always 5 o’clock somewhere, you’re certain to find some credit card offering a bonus for new cardmembers.
But no individual bonus is permanent. At least, you shouldn’t expect it to be.
Many credit card issuers offer sign-up bonuses only in the first few months or quarters of a new card’s existence, then discontinue the program and hope that their cards’ other benefits and rewards will be enough to keep new customers coming.
So if you see a bonus you like, act sooner rather than later.
Should You Apply for a Credit Card Just to Get the Bonus?
Treat sign-up bonuses as tiebreakers — if you’re choosing between two cards and one has a clearly superior new cardmember bonus, go with that one.
Because a good sign-up bonus is usually a sign of a good card overall. Some of the best credit cards around have attractive bonuses that complement generous cash-back rewards programs, low APRs, VIP treatment, and other perks.
What Happens If You Don’t Meet the Spending Requirements for a Sign-up Bonus?
Then you don’t get the bonus. It sounds harsh, but credit card issuers are often less willing to bend on this point than elsewhere, like waiving the annual fee if you ask nicely.
How to Select a Credit Card With the Best New Cardholder Offer
Not sure which credit card welcome offer makes the most sense for you? Take a step back (or two) and consider the following:
- The bonus’s actual or estimated value, which may depend on the reward being offered or loyalty currency being used
- Whether you can realistically clear the spending threshold in the allotted time frame
- What other new cardmember benefits the card has, if any — like a 0% APR introductory promotion
- The card’s other perks and rewards, which might make it worth keeping around after the welcome period ends
- The card’s annual fee and other potential carrying costs
Ultimately, a credit card sign-up bonus should be the cherry on top. Think of it as a final inducement to get a credit card you’d probably want anyway, rather than an excuse to buy stuff you don’t really need.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, please visit this rates and fees page.
For rates and fees of the Platinum Card® from American Express, please visit this rates and fees page.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card, please visit the rates and fees page.
For information about rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business Credit Card from American Express, visit this rates and fees page.
For rates and fees of the Hilton Honors American Express Business Card, please visit this rates and fees page.