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Credit Cards

Credit Cards With the Best Signing Bonuses

Score valuable benefits by signing up for these credit cards prior to the holidays.

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Holiday shopping season is a great time to give yourself a gift: a heap of extra points or miles from your credit card. Spending $1,000 to $4,000 to get them should be a snap.

See Also: Find the Best Rewards Credit Card for You

The cards that offer the most generous bonuses have annual fees, although some waive their fee the first year. For example, the Citi Thank­You Premier card (www.citi.com; $95 annual fee, waived the first year) hands over 50,000 points if you spend $3,000 in the first three months. Standard rewards include three points per dollar spent on travel (including gas), two points on dining and entertainment (such as movie tickets), and one point on everything else. Among airline cards, British Airways Visa Signature (www.chase.com; $95) recently offered 50,000 miles if you spend $2,000 in the first three months. The card pays three miles per dollar on purchases you make with British Airways and one mile per dollar on all other spending.

If you’d rather earn miles you can use for any airline, check out Capital One Venture (www.capitalone.com; $59, waived the first year) and Barclaycard Arrival Plus (www.barclaycardus.com; $89, waived the first year); both offer 40,000 miles for spending $3,000 in the first three months. You earn two miles per dollar on all purchases with either card. Chase Sapphire Preferred dishes out 40,000 points for spending $4,000 in the first three months.

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Among no-fee cards, consider Capital One VentureOne (1.25 miles per dollar spent), Barclaycard Arrival (two miles on travel and dining, and one mile per dollar on all other purchases) and BankAmericard Travel Rewards (www.bankofamerica.com; 1.5 points per dollar). All offer 20,000 miles for spending $1,000 in the first three months.

See Also: 9 Overlooked Credit Card Perks