Who Is This Credit Card Best For?
Diligently searches for the best products and delights in a good bargain See more cards
Hits the road often, whether for work or play See more cards
Loves to explore places and experience new things See more cards
Frequently shops with a particular merchant and wants to be rewarded for their loyalty See more cards
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card is a valuable card for Wyndham loyalists, offering rewards rates on everyday spending categories that rival some of the best credit cards on the market. The rewards program’s hotel redemption options should also appeal to travelers who prefer simplicity.
That said, the card’s welcome offer falls short compared with some other top hotel credit cards, so keep that in mind if a big intro bonus is important to you. Also, note that you’ll need good credit or better to get approved.
Low spending requirement for welcome bonus
Annual points bonus worth one night’s stay
Platinum status benefits
Excellent rewards on gas, groceries, and dining
0% APR on balance transfers
Anniversary points limit you to low-tier properties
- Low spending requirement for welcome bonus: When you open an account, you’ll earn 45,000 bonus points after you spend just $1,000 in the first 90 days. Welcome bonuses from other cards offer more value, but this one’s among the easiest to earn.
- Annual points bonus worth one night’s stay: You’ll get 7,500 bonus points when you renew your account, which is enough for one rewards night at certain Wyndham properties.
- Platinum status benefits: You’ll have Platinum status with Wyndham’s loyalty program as long as your account is open—you typically need to stay nine or more nights in a year to reach that level. Platinum status comes with perks like early check-in, late checkout, car rental upgrades, and points bonuses.
- Excellent rewards on gas, groceries, and dining: You wouldn’t normally expect this from a hotel credit card, but the Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card offers rewards rates on eligible gas, grocery, and dining purchases that rival some of the best rewards credit cards in each of those categories.
- 0% APR on balance transfers: You won’t pay any interest for 15 months on balance transfers you make in the first 45 days. Very few hotel rewards cards offer this perk.
- Anniversary points limit you to low-tier properties: The 7,500 points you earn on your cardmember anniversary are enough to book Wyndham's lowest-tier properties. Anniversary bonuses from competing cards give you a wider range of properties to choose from. For example, the World of Hyatt card's yearly award night is good for Category 1-4 properties, which include upscale properties like Grand Hyatt and Andaz.
Bonus for New Cardholders
As a new cardholder, you’ll receive 45,000 bonus points if you spend $1,000 in the first 90 days. Based on data collected by The Balance, Wyndham Rewards points are worth 1.05 cents on average when you use them to book free hotel stays. If you can get that average rate, your welcome offer is worth $472.50.
Other hotel credit cards offer more valuable bonuses than the Earner Plus, but the bonus is still worth up to six free nights at Wyndham properties. And, if you aren’t sure you can manage to spend $1,000 a month that other hotel cards require for a welcome bonus, this card’s low spending requirement could make it a good fit.
Earning Points & Rewards
As a cardholder, you’ll earn 6 points per dollar on eligible Wyndham and gas purchases, 4 points per dollar on eligible grocery and dining purchases, and 1 point per dollar on everything else.
Target and Walmart are not included in the grocery-rewards category.
It’s normal for a hotel card to reserve its highest rewards rate for purchases at its properties; giving gas purchases the highest rewards rate is uncommon. Also, earning 4 points per dollar on dining and groceries is a standout rate among hotel cards.
The biggest drawback here is that you’ll earn only 1 point per dollar on all non-bonus spending. This type of setup is typical of most rewards cards, but there are competing hotel cards that offer 2 points per dollar as a base rate.
You can use your Wyndham Rewards points in several ways, but you’re best off using them strictly to book free hotel stays at Wyndham properties. Again, the points are worth 1.05 cents apiece on average, but you could get more or less than that based on how you redeem.
To figure out how much your points are worth on a particular stay, divide the cash price of the stay by the number of points required to book it.
A lot of hotel chains have convoluted award charts with a long list of property categories and different rates depending on if you’re traveling during off-peak or peak season. Wyndham, on the other hand, has just three category tiers for more than 9,000 properties worldwide. You’ll pay 7,500, 15,000, or 30,000 points per night for award stays.
If you don’t have enough rewards or you want to save them up for a long vacation, you can also combine your points with cash to book a stay—that option starts at 1,500, 3,000, or 6,000 points per night, and you’d pay the remainder in cash.
Caesars hotel bookings require a resort fee that you can’t pay for with points.
Here are some of the other redemption options you can choose:
- Tours and activities: Redemption rates may vary by booking but, in many cases, the rates don’t approach the 1-cent-per-point value you should look for.
- Gift cards: You can redeem your rewards for gift cards at an average rate of 0.37 cents per point. Retailers include Avis, Dave & Busters, Bass Pro Shops, Barnes & Noble, and PetSmart.
- Marathon Gas: Cardholders You can use your points to purchase gas at Marathon Gas stations that accept rewards redemptions. However, Marathon Gas doesn’t have many locations that accept rewards and Wyndham doesn’t specify point redemption values.
- Merchandise: You can redeem points for products from well-known retailers like Bose and Cuisinart, but the redemption rates tend to be far below the desired rate of at least 1 cent per point.
- Charitable donations: Like some other travel rewards programs, you can donate your points to charitable organizations. The minimum redemption is 500 points.
- Maintenance and exchange fees:If you own a Wyndham timeshare, you can use points to cover maintenance and exchange fees at a rate of 0.5 cents per point.
With some rewards programs, one of the best ways to maximize the value of your rewards is by transferring them to other loyalty programs. To make it worthwhile, though, the ratio has to be good, and that’s not the case with most of Wyndham’s transfer partners. Whereas the Chase Ultimate Rewards program lets you transfer points 1-to-1 to airlines like United, Wyndham’s transfer rates are 5-to-1 for most of its airline partners, including United and Frontier.
If you’re thinking about transferring your Wyndham Rewards points, your best bet is the Caesar Rewards program because its transfer rate is 1-to-1.
How to Get the Most Out of This Card
As soon as you open your account, create a plan to meet the minimum spending requirement to get the welcome offer (roughly $333 per month) and use the card anytime you’re buying gas or groceries, or when you go out to eat. Use a different card for non-bonus spending, as your Wyndham card will earn just 1 point per dollar on those purchases.
When you’re ready to redeem your points, book hotel rooms because they provide the most value per point.
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card offers one perk that The Balance’s editorial team has deemed “excellent”:
- Platinum level benefits: You’ll maintain Platinum status as long as your account is open. You’ll get accelerated earning on cash stays (15% more), late checkout and early check-in, preferred room choice, status match with the Caesar Rewards program, rental car upgrades with Avis and Budget, and several other perks related to booking discounts.
- go free program offers a 10% discount on points bookings at certain properties
J.D. Power ranked Barclays ninth out of 11 national credit card issuers in its 2020 credit card satisfaction study. The card issuer’s 796-point rating (out of 1,000) was below the average of 810. Barclays offers complimentary FICO-score access as a benefit to its cardholders. You can manage your account online or from the Barclays mobile app, and if you have questions, you can contact customer service anytime.
Barclays uses standard security measures to protect its cardholders, including two-factor authentication for account logins, zero-liability protection if someone uses your card without your permission, and contactless technology, which provides the same level of security as EMV chips but with a quicker process.
The Wyndham Rewards Earner Plus Card doesn’t charge any fees that are out of the ordinary for similar credit cards.