The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card is a co-branded hotel credit card designed especially for frequent travelers who prefer comfortable stays and person-tailored services at Ritz-Carlton properties. The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card comes as a premium credit card with quite high of an annual fee, but its perks and benefits and large amount of additional services are worthwhile to obtain this card.
Great signup bonus: 2 complimentary nights at Tier 1-4 hotels (equivalent of 120,000 reward points);
Automatic Gold Elite status after first year, opportunity to move towards Platinum Elite status;
Discounts on hotel services, round-trip domestic airfare, and travel-related services;
0% foreign transaction fee.
- High annual fee – $450.
Signup bonus and reward points
Receive E-certificate for two complimentary nights after you spend $4,000 on this card in the first 3 months. Free nights certificate is valid for 12 months after you receive it and applies for Tier 1-4 hotels. This is quite a valuable sign-up bonus: certain Tier 4 Ritz-Carlton hotels (for example, Ritz-Carlton Montreal) require up to 60,000 points to redeem for a free night stay. Thus, in fact, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card provides a sign-up bonus equal to 120,000 reward points.
You get additional 10,000 bonus points after you authorize a first user to your account and make a purchase on this card. To get this bonus, authorize the user within the first 3 months.
With The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card you earn reward points on purchases as follows:
- 5 points per each $1 spent at participating Ritz-Carlton and Marriott properties, and all SPG properties;
- 2 points per each $1 spent on restaurants, at car rental agencies, as well as on airfare bought directly at airline company;
- 1 per each $1 spent on all other purchases.
Users authorized to your card earn the same amount of points on purchases. Remember that some types of purchases (such as betting purchases – casino chips, lottery tickets, etc.) as well as transactions (balance transfers and cash advances, etc.) won’t earn you points. Each calendar year you will get a 10% bonus on the amount of reward points you earned during this year. Reward points transferred to your account from other cards won’t earn a 10% bonus. To save your reward points from expiration, be sure that you or an authorized user performs at least one point earning or redemption activity within past 24 months. And, of course, all your reward points will terminate if you close your account.
Although Marriott and Ritz-Carlton have a different loyalty programs, membership in one means automatic membership in another. This is a valuable detail since it allows you to use benefits of one program while using another. For example, you can enjoy the perks and benefits of Elite status in the Ritz-Carlton program while staying at a Marriott property. In addition, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card is a partner of the Chase Ultimate Rewards program since the cards are issued by the same bank. Thus, don’t hesitate to transfer your Ultimate Rewards points from Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card to The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card.
With The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card you can request a reimbursement for incidental travel-related purchases, such as an airline lounge-day pass, upgrade of airline seats, in-flight meals, etc. Reimbursement will be provided in the form of a credit statement, and each calendar year you can get reimbursement of up to $300 in combined purchases.
Book a round-trip domestic flight to be operated by certain airlines, pay for your ticket in full with The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card. If you do so, you will be eligible to get a $100 discount of the whole itinerary which includes up to 5 tickets. Such tickets will become non-refundable except the cases when you cancel your trip due to medical event.
As a holder of The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card you also will get a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership, which allows you to access more than 900 airport VIP lounge zones worldwide.
The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card also will grant you a list of complimentary services which will make your trips carefree. During your trips, your damaged or lost luggage will be covered up on up to $3,000 per passenger. Also, in case if your luggage (which contains essential item like clothes) is delayed for more than 6 hours, you get a reimbursement of up to $100 a day for 5 days. You also can get a reimbursement of up to $10,000 of pre-paid non-refundable travel expenses (fares, fees, etc.) if your trip is cancelled by certain situations, like sickness, severe weather, etc. Flight delays are covered for up to $500 per family member for unreimbursed expenses (accommodation, meals, etc.) if delay is over 12 hours or requires an overnight hotel stay.
Hotel Credit. You also can get a $100 discount for qualifying hotel stays in case if your stay is at least 2 days long. This discount is applicable towards additional services provided at participating properties, such as spa, dining, golf, etc.
Club Level Upgrade. Ritz-Carlton Club Level allows you to use luxury communal space designed to increase the comfort of your stay in an unforgettable way. Club Level provides you an additional set of person-tailored complimentary catering services. With Ritz-Carlton credit card you can upgrade your room to Ritz-Carlton Club level. This option is available 3 times per year on the stays up to 7 nights long (at participating properties).
Elite Status. As a Ritz-Carlton cardmember you receive Gold Elite status automatically at the anniversary of your account. To maintain Gold Elite status further, each year you have to spend $10,000 on your card. To receive Platinum Elite status and maintain it, each account anniversary year you have to spend $75,000 or more on your card.
Gold and Platinum Elite status get you the following benefits (see table below). Remember, that your Gold Elite Status applies also for Marriott stays as Ritz-Carlton and Marriott basically share loyalty program.
Gold Elite Benefits
Platinum Elite Benefits
Guaranteed Late Checkout
Enhanced In-Room Internet
New Experiences Marketplace
25% Bonus on Reward Points
Complimentary Room Upgrade
50% Bonus on Reward Points
Platinum Arrival Gift (1,000 points or 500 miles)
48 Hours Guaranteed Room Availability
Premier Concierge Service. With The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card you get an opportunity to contact 24/7 support service. Support will assist you in any need you have.
Car Rental Privileges. When you book a car paying with The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card, you get an access to a wide range of special car rental-related services, such as discounts, special rates for renting luxury cars, etc. Privileges are available when you rent a car at Silvercar, Avis and National car rental agencies.
Car Damage Collision Waiver. Pay car rental charge in full using The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card and decline waiver offered by rental agency. Car you rent will be covered up against theft or damage. Covered amount is up to the all cost of the car.
Purchase Protection. Your purchases are protected against theft or damage for 120 days from the purchase date. You can protect combined purchases of up to $50,000 and up to $10,000 per claim.
Price Difference Reimbursement. If a purchase you made on this card appears on a sale with within 90 days after purchase date, you can get a reimbursement of up to $500 in price difference. You can reimburse price difference on up to $2,500 per year.
How much it costs
Annual fee is $450. Variable APR 16.99% - 23.99% on purchases and balance transfers applies based on your creditworthiness. APR on cash advances is 25.99%. Penalty APR is not applicable for this card. However, for each late or returned payment a fee of up to $37 applies based on your balance. Balance transfer fee is $5 or 5% of transfer amount (whichever is greater). Cash advance fee is $10 or 5% of transaction (whichever is greater). Foreign transaction fee 0%.
The bottom line
Annual fee for The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card might seem frustrating. However, it’s totally worth it if you are a frequent traveller with Ritz-Carlton or Marriott properties as a priority. This card will be especially valuable if you are a big spender. It’s also lucrative when you strive for benefits of Platinum Elite status. Discounts and perks of this card will totally cover your expenses on annual fee. Thus, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® Credit Card is an ultimate painkiller for convenient and carefree travel.