Professor Sahar Bahmani Featured in Wallethub on Hotel Credit Cards

Published: January 9, 2018

The following is a WalletHub interview with Associate Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Economic Education (CEE) Dr. Sahar Bahmani. Link to Wallethub article: 

Which do you think are most popular, and why: the best hotel rewards credit cards or the best airline rewards credit cards?

In my opinion, best airline rewards credit cards are the most popular simply because of the fact that when people travel, they want to be rewarded for traveling with a particular airline regularly, and they may very well have a place to stay (with family, friends, relatives, etc.) so a hotel stay is not always needed.

How many nights per year would you say a person needs to spend in a hotel to warrant getting a hotel credit card?

Hotel credit cards come with an annual fee of around $100, and you do need to have spent anywhere from $2,000-$10,000 per year before you can cash in on the benefits and rewards, so I'd say ten nights per year on average is needed to be first spent in order to warrant getting a hotel credit card.

It's not always obvious which hotel credit cards are best, given that each hotel chain's points are worth a different amount. To what extent do you think this confuses / annoys / costs consumers?

I think it's actually very well laid out -- for example, the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card gives you one free weekend night after spending $10,000 within the first year, and comes with an annual fee of $95. The Hyatt credit card gives you one free night after pending $2,000 in the first three months of having your new card, and comes with an annual fee of $75. I think that one good thing about these cards is that it is all clear and precise, so that you know what you are signing up for an what your rewards look like.

Would you expect the most luxurious hotel chains to offer the most rewarding credit cards?

Yes, I would, because they want repeat business.

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