Spirit Airlines Refreshes Co-Branded Credit Card Line-Up
As travelers and travel brands look toward a hopeful future, recent weeks have brought news of both new and refreshed co-branded options. This includes an upcoming U.S.-centric Air Canada card from Chase and a pair of cards from Emirates and Barclays among others. Now, Spirit and Bank of America have announced new credit card options for discount air travelers.
This refresh comes as the budget airline also introduces a new loyalty program: The Free Spirit Club. In turn, the former Spirit Airlines World Mastercard will now become the Free Spirit Travel More World Elite Mastercard. Additionally, BofA and Spirit are also debuting the no-annual-fee Free Spirit Travel World Mastercard.
Starting with the Free Spirit Travel More World Elite Mastercard, it will offer 3x points on Spirit purchases, 2x points on dining and grocery store purchases, and 1 point per dollar spent on everything else. Cardholders can also earn a $100 companion voucher on their anniversary each year as long as they spend $5,000 or more on the card in the prior year. Other perks include the ability to earn Status Qualifying Points toward Silver and Gold status (1 Status Qualifying Point for each $10 in net purchases), waived redemption fees, Zone 2 Shortcut boarding, a 25% rebate on in-flight purchases, and more. The Free Spirit Travel More does carry an annual fee of $79, but this is waived for the first year. Plus, currently, new card applicants can score 40,000 bonus points and a $100 companion flight voucher when they spend at least $1,000 on their card in the first 90 days of opening their account.
Given the Free Spirit Travel More card’s annual fee, there may be flyers looking for another option. Thus, the airline has unveiled the Free Spirit Travel Mastercard. This card earns 2x points on all Spirit purchases along with 1 point per dollar on everything else. However, while the points structure may be lacking, the Free Spirit Travel card does include several (but not all) of the perks that its annual-fee counterpart does. For example, cardholders will enjoy waived redemption fees, Zone 2 Shortcut boarding, 25% rebates on in-flight purchases, and more. Cardholders can also unlock a 5,000 points bonus on each of their anniversaries as long as they spend at least $10,000 in purchases during the prior year. Finally, in terms of a welcome offer, new Free Spirit Travel card members can earn 10,000 bonus points when they spend at least $500 on the card in their first 90 days.
Also notable is that, while Free Spirit points typically expire unless members make at least one qualifying transaction or redemption every 12 months, points earned by Free Spirit Travel and Free Spirit Travel More cardholders will not expire so long as their card account remains open. There is also no limit to how many points cardholders can earn. Meanwhile, neither card charges foreign transaction fees.
Commenting on the new credit card offerings, Spirit Airlines VP of Omnichannel Commerce and Loyalty Rana Ghosh stated, “People want options. They want to be able to choose how and when they earn points. That’s where the credit cards come in. Our cardholders can earn rewards fast even when they’re on the ground. That means they can relax knowing another trip is around the corner, rather than spending all their time chasing points.” Ghosh went on to say, “Plus, we’re adding in the kind of perks that make every trip even more enjoyable.”
Obviously the Free Spirit Travel and Free Spirit Travel More Mastercards won’t be a perfect fit for every flyer. However, for those who frequently take advantage of the airlines ultra-low fares, either option may prove fruitful. To that point, while $79 is an increase in annual fee from the previous product, it’s also relatively low by co-branded airline card standards. Ultimately, it’s just one more card to consider as travelers (hopefully) return to the skies in 2021.