The Best Hotel Credit Cards with Free Nights

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer.

If you're a frequent traveler, a hotel credit card that offers a free night is a great way to save money on lodging while getting rewarded for your expenses. The top cards in this category offer other perks like hotel elite status, resort credits and bonus points. Below, we broke out the best credit cards that offer a free night's stay. You can find the full list of cards with this benefit at the bottom of the page.

The average value of a free night was calculated by looking at the redemption values for corresponding hotel chains

The information related to the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card and the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card has been collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply.

Recommended Hotel Cards with a Free Night Benefit

The best credit cards with a free hotel night benefit also offer attractive spending rewards and travel perks like Global Entry fee credits and airport lounge access. Most of the major international hotel chains offer a card with a free night benefit, so you can likely find a card that matches your preferences.

A Hotel Card with Premium Perks

Our Thoughts

The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is a solid premium card that offers a variety of travel benefits. For a $450 annual fee (See Rates & Fees), the card offers Diamond status at Hilton, an annual free weekend night and an annual $250 Hilton Resorts statement credit. If you frequently stay at Hilton properties, the benefits of this card will likely be worth the high price tag. Otherwise, there are more affordable free night cards like the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card and the Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Credit Card.

Room in the Jakarta Doubletree by Hilton
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Jakarta, courtesy of Agoda.

Each year that you renew the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card, you'll be eligible for one free weekend night stay at a Hilton property, depending on room availability. The terms of the offer specify that Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights are all eligible for the reward night. All-inclusive properties and distinctive properties, including some hotels in destinations like China, Hawaii and New York City, are excluded from the program. You can find the full list of exclusions on Hilton's website.

How the benefit works: You'll receive a redeemable digital code for the free night, usually between 8 and 14 weeks after the account opening or your anniversary date. The code expires a year after issuance and can be used to book one free weekend night reward in a standard accommodation, double occupancy room.

The information related to the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.

Solid Rewards for a Low Annual Fee

IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card

  • On Chase's Secure Website

$89

15.99% - 22.99% Variable

Good

  • Earn 140,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • Enjoy a Reward Night after each account anniversary year at eligible IHG hotels worldwide. Plus, enjoy a reward night when you redeem points for any stay of 4 or more nights
  • Earn 25 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Platinum Elite status as long as you remain a Premier card member
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre✓® Fee Credit of up to $100 every 4 years as reimbursement for the application fee charged to your card
  • IHG Rewards Club Bonus points are redeemable at hotels such as InterContinental®, Crowne Plaza®, Kimpton®, EVEN® Hotels, Indigo® Hotels & Holiday Inn®
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Our Thoughts

If you're a frequent guest at IHG hotels, the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card is a good option for a hotel credit card with a low annual fee. With the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card, you'll earn a free night after each account anniversary year. The reward can be used at a variety of IHG properties, which include InterContinental Hotels, Kimpton Hotels, Crowne Plaza Hotels and Hotel Indigo, among others.

Aside from the free night benefit, the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card provides solid value as an inexpensive rewards card. The card offers users multiple avenues through which they can earn more than 1 point per $1. For example, users earn 2 points per $1 on airlines tickets purchased directly from the airlines, local transit and commuting and fitness club and gym memberships.

How the benefit works: The free night reward can be used at hotels with a redemption level of 40,000 points or fewer. On your account anniversary date each year, the benefit will become immediately available on your online account.

Entry-Level Rewards for Marriott Loyalists

Our Thoughts

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card is another low annual fee hotel card that provides decent spending rewards and free night benefits. For a $95 annual fee, you'll receive Silver Elite status at Marriott hotels, 6 points per dollar on purchases at Marriott and Starwood Preferred Guest hotels and 2 points per dollar on all other purchases. The card even gives users a path to Gold Status, which can be achieved by spending $35,000 or more each account year.

Oceanfront room in the Miami Beach EDITION hotel
EDITION Miami Beach by Marriott, courtesy of EDITION Hotels.

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card is a good choice if you're loyal to Marriott and don't want to shell out the $450 annual fee for the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card.

How the benefit works: You'll receive an electronic free night award certificate within 8 weeks of your account anniversary date. The certificate can be used to book at a property worth fewer than 35,000 points per night, with certain exclusions.

The information related to the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card has been collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Excellent Benefits for High Spenders

Our Thoughts

For travelers with big budgets, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card packs significant value for a $450 annual fee (See Rates & Fees). In addition to the free night award, the card offers Marriott Gold Elite status, $300 in Marriott statement credits and 3 points per dollar on restaurant spending. The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card also offers travel benefits to ease the airport experience, like a Priority Pass membership and a Global Entry fee credit.

The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card is a great choice if you're a high spender and don't already have a premium card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve® or The Platinum Card® from American Express. For those who already have premium cards, it's likely not worth it to pay another high annual fee exclusively for the free night benefit.

How the benefit works: The free night award can be redeemed at any property worth up to 50,000 points. You can expect to receive an electronic certificate within 8 to 12 weeks of your card account anniversary date.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, please click here.

The information related to the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.

Decent Travel and Dining Rewards

The World Of Hyatt Credit Card

  • On Chase's Secure Website

$95

15.99% - 22.99% Variable

Excellent

  • Earn 25,000 Bonus Points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Plus, 25,000 Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 total within 6 months of account opening.
  • Free nights start at 5,000 points
  • Receive 1 free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel or resort after your Cardmember anniversary
  • Earn an extra free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel if you spend $15,000 during your cardmember anniversary year
  • Get automatic World of Hyatt Elite status and 5 qualifying night credits every year as long as your account is open
  • Earn 2 qualifying night credits towards tier status everytime you spend $5,000 on your card
  • Earn 9 points total for Hyatt stays - 4 Bonus Points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels & 5 Base Points per $1 you can earn as a World of Hyatt member
  • Earn 2 Bonus Points per $1 spent at restaurants, on airlines tickets purchased directly from the airlines, on local transit and commuting and on fitness club and gym memberships
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Our Thoughts

The World Of Hyatt Credit Card is a solid free hotel night card with benefits similar to the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card and Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Credit Card. The card offers Earn 9 points total per $1 spent at Hyatt - 4 Bonus Points per $1 when you use your card at Hyatt hotels & 5 Base Points per $1 you can earn as a World of Hyatt member. Cardholders also get automatic Hyatt Discoverist elite status.

The decision to get The World Of Hyatt Credit Card versus another one of the low annual fee cards on this list should be determined by your personal preferences. All three cards with annual fees below $100 provide fairly similar benefits, so you should choose based on your affinity to the hotel chain.

How the benefit works: The annual free night award will be issued up to 10 weeks after your account anniversary date. It can be redeemed at Category 1 to 4 hotels and is valid for one year.

Full List

The cards listed above are the best all-around credit cards that offer a free night benefit. However, there are other options that may be more aligned to your hotel preferences and spending patterns. Keep in mind that the free night benefit differs on each card, so it's important to read the terms and conditions of the credit card application before applying. Here's the full list of free night hotel cards that we came across in our search.

*If application received before 03/28/19, $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95

Yowana is a former product analyst at ValuePenguin, specializing in credit cards, rewards programs and travel. He previously covered mortgages, banking and insurance for the website. Yowana graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in Political Science.

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).