With a generous award rate that awards bonus points in popular categories, the Wells Fargo Propel American Express card is one of the best no annual fee travel cards out there. If you're dying to earn rewards points for your next vacation but aren't willing to spend $95 or more a year, the Propel is a great option.
A major benefit of the Wells Fargo Propel card is its generositysign-up bonus- 20,000 points when you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first three months (worth $200 if redeemed for cashback). While this isn't the biggest introductory offer you'll find among travel cards, it's top notch for a card with no annual fee.
However, cardholders looking for an initial flow of points for travel may be better off applying for a card that comes with an annual fee and higher bonus. TheCapital One Venture Rewards Credit Cardfor example, earns 75,000 miles if you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months and charges an annual fee of $95.
Earn points with the Wells Fargo Propel
The Wells Fargo Propel card has a lucrative rewards rate, including 3 points per dollar on food, travel and transit, gas station purchases, and select streaming services. Cardholders earn 1 point per dollar on other purchases. With bonus categories such as purchases like food and fuel - which make up a significant portion of many users' budgets - it's easy to rack up a significant number of points.
Best of all, there is no spending cap on the 3-points-per-dollar bonus tiers. That means higher-spending players don't have to worry about hitting a cap and earning sub-par rewards.
We value this on a1.78 percent earnings ratiofor a cardholder who spends an average amount in the bonus categories. This is an exceptionally high earning rate for a no annual fee card on par with the Wells Fargo Propel cardsome premium travel cards.
Top:With its high earning rate, the Wells Fargo Propel card often beats revenue on premium travel reward cards with higher earning rates when you subtract those cards' annual fees. Make sure you do the math to see if the Propel card or a premium card is better value for you.
What are Wells Fargo Propel card points worth?
For the most part, Wells Fargo Propel points have a value of 1 cent per point, whether you're redeeming them for a travel purchase or cashback. However, there is one exception. Wells Fargo allows Propel cardholders to easily transfer their points between other credit card accounts at the bank. This means users can transfer Propel points to theWells Fargo Visa Signature®-Karte*– which costs 1.5 cents per point when redeemed for airfare.
Redeem Wells Fargo Propel points
Wells FargoGo-Far AwardsPoints are very flexible. Unlike many rewards programs, you do not lose point value if you choose another redemption option. In almost all cases, you get 1 cent per point. Here are some ways you can use points from your Propel card:
Wells Fargo Propel redemption options
|Minimum score required||point value(Cent)|
|Cashback (check, ATM withdrawal, or direct deposit into Wells Fargo account)||2.500||1|
|statement of account||2.500||1|
|Digital Downloads||Depending on the item price||Varies (usually less than 1 cent)|
|Fan Shop||Depending on the item price||0,7|
When you use your Propel card points to book travel through Go Far Rewards, you can often get great value out of it. The Wells Fargo Travel Portal includes vacation packages and special offers on other travel purchases that allow cardholders to add even more rewards.
Simply compare Go Far Rewards prices to other travel sites to make sure you're getting the best deal. You can always redeem it for a statement credit or cashback if you find a cheaper flight or hotel on another site.
Top:Because Propel card points offer the same value whether you're redeeming them for cashback, statements, or travel through the Go Far rewards site, you should compare all of your options before redeeming them through the Go Far rewards site.
See related:Book a trip through Wells Fargo Go Far Rewards
Transferring Wells Fargo Propel points
Wells Fargo also makes it easy to transfer points from your Wells Fargo Propel card - including transfers to family and friends or other Wells Fargo credit cards.
As long as you have at least 2,500 points, you can transfer Wells Fargo Propel points to any Go Far Rewards account - even if it's not a family member or authorized user. You can even transfer points to a Wells Fargo checking or savings account for 1 cent per point. Additionally, Propel cardholders can set up a pool for friends to add points to combine rewards for a larger redemption.
If you have more than one Wells Fargo Go Far Rewards credit card, you can also combine all of your points. This is proving to be particularly lucrative for Wells Fargo Visa Signature cardholders who can increase point value.
Top:One key feature that Wells Fargo points lack is the ability to transfer points to airline and hotel rewards programs. Several programs includingKapital One,Pursue ultimate rewardsAndRewards for American Express membersallow you to transfer points to external programs and is a great way to get additional value from your points. If you are interested in becoming a points hacker, you should check out these programs.
Pairing Wells Fargo Propel and Wells Fargo Visa Signature
For travel enthusiasts, you can get more value out of the Wells Fargo Propel if youPair it with the Wells Fargo Visa Signature card. The Visa Signature itself doesn't have a very high reward rate, but it does come with a 50 percent bonus on redeeming Flight Points. If you spend at least $50,000 a year on purchases, that bonus increases to 75 percent.
Since the Wells Fargo Propel has a generous reward rate and the Visa Signature has a generous point value, combining the two cards is an incredibly lucrative option. For example, if you spend $15,900 a year on purchases from your Wells Fargo Propel, here's what you can earn by transferring your points to the Visa Signature card and redeeming it for airline tickets (based on our estimated earning rate of 1.78 points per dollar ). )
Increase annual reward value when redeemed for airline tickets with the Visa Signature card
|point value||Bonuses for $15,900 annual spend|
|1 cent (no transfer)||283,02 $|
|1.5 cents (transfer to Visa Signature with less than $50,000 annual spend)||424,53 $|
|1.75 cents (transfer to Visa Signature with more than $50,000 annual spend)||495,29 $|
When you take advantage of this pairing, the Wells Fargo Propel card can become more valuable than many annual fee cards, even in the first year. Although annual fee cards have higher sign-up bonuses and award rates, transferring points from Propel to Wells Fargo Visa Signature can make up the difference.
See related:Wells Fargo Propel vs. Capital One Venture
Is the Propel card an American Express card?
The Wells Fargo Propel card is an American Express card - not a Visa or Mastercard. However, it's important to note that the issuer is Wells Fargo, not American Express. This is important as the card earns Go Far Rewards points rather than Membership Rewards. You can only redeem points earned with the Propel card through the Wells Fargo portal. Unlike an American Express-issued card, you cannot redeem Propel points through Amex travel or any other Membership Rewards redemption option.
An exception to this separation isAmerican Express Connect, giving third-party Amex cardholders some benefitsAmex Deals. Offers include cashback on travel, dining and retail purchases only when you add an eligible offer to your card and make an eligible purchase with it.
American Express cards aren't accepted by quite as many merchants as Visa or Mastercard, but their acceptance is fairly widespread in the US. Owning an American Express card becomes more difficult when traveling abroad as fewer merchants can accept Amex abroad.
Unlike many American Express cards offered by Amex, the Wells Fargo Propel card is an actual credit card — not onecharge card. This means you have an APR and are able to keep a balance month-to-month.
See related:Understand third-party American Express cards
Wells Fargo Propel Card Benefits
Wells Fargo Propel card benefits are fairly standard, but they do include some perks that set them apart from other no-annual-fee travel cards. Most notably, it offers phone protection that offers a refund (up to $600) in the event of damage or theft when you pay your bill with your Propel card. Here are some other notable benefits of the card:
- Access to presale and VIP event tickets- As an American Express card, the Wells Fargo Propel qualifies for Amex presale tickets where available.
- No foreign transaction fee– Although it may not be as widely used abroad as a Visa or Mastercard, Propel will not charge you a foreign transaction fee.
- Rental car loss and damage insurance- As long as you charge your Propel card for the full cost of your rental, you will receive an excess (a charge not covered by other rates) up to $50,000 per rental.
- Lost luggage insurance- If your luggage is lost or damaged by the carrier, you can get a refund of up to $1,000 per trip.
- Travel Accident Insurance– This benefit provides coverage for up to $150,000 in the event of accidental death or personal injury while traveling by air, train, boat or bus.
- retail protection- If a qualifying purchase made with your Propel card is damaged or stolen within 90 days, you are eligible for a refund of up to $1,000 per loss.
- Extended Warranty- Your Propel card extends the store or retailer warranty (for warranties of one year or less) to twice the advertised amount.
- return protection- If you attempt to return a qualifying purchase within 90 days and the store won't take it back, the Propel card can refund you up to $300 per item (maximum $1,000 per year).
- Introductory APR for new purchases and qualifying balance transfers- New cardholders can transfer qualifying balances to the Propel card or fund a new purchase at a 0 percent rate for 12 months from account opening (14.49-24.99 percent variable APR thereafter).
While most of the shopping protections on the Propel card are pretty standard, the card includes some nice extras for frequent travelers. Perks like lost luggage and travel accident insurance can add up to significant savings when needed.
However, if you're hoping to use a credit card to fund your travels, it's worth noting that the Propel card doesn't offer travel perks compared to some premium cards. For example, it doesn't include trip cancellation or car rental insurance - two potentially valuable benefits should your trip go awry.
Wells Fargo's customer service is decent, but it's far from the best among the major issuers. In the 2020 Customer Satisfaction Survey by J.D. Power scored Wells Fargo 800 points, ranking eighth out of 11 major banks. On the plus side, the bank offers 24/7 customer support and an online chat feature for cardholders who need quick answers.
The Wells Fargo app also performs well with users - rating 4.7 out of 5 on the Google Play Store and 4.8 out of 5 on the Apple App Store.
How does the Propel card compare to other travel cards?
While the Propel card is a premium travel card with no annual fee, it's not the only good option out there. Depending on your spending patterns and what you expect from a sign-up bonus, several other no-fee travel cards have competitive offers.
Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card
Bank of America® Travel Rewards Credit Card
Discover it® miles
1.25 miles per dollar with every purchase, every day
1.5 points per dollar with every purchase
1.5 miles per dollar on general purchases
40,000 miles when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months
25,000 online points when you spend $1,000 in the first 90 days
Corresponds to the miles you have earned at the end of the first year
|other things to know||other things to know||other things to know|
Capital One VentureOne-Karte
The Capital One VentureOne card is one of our most popular no annual fee travel cards. Its overall premium rate can't compete with Propel, but Capital One has recently added over 15+ airlinesTransferpartner– offers the opportunity to stretch miles a bit further.
Bank of America Travel Rewards-Karte
While we estimate Propel's average rewards rate to be about 1.78 points per dollar, the Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card only earns 1.5 miles per dollar on all purchases. However, Bank of America customers with a significant balance in a checking or savings account (or a qualifying Merrill account) can increase their earnings with the Preferred Rewards program. Depending on your tier, you can earn up to 2.62 points per dollar — which is outstanding for a card with no annual fee.
Preferred Reward Tiers
|Gold (20.000 bis 49.999 US-Dollar)||25% (1.87 points per dollar)|
|Platinum ($50,000-$99,999)||50% (2.25 points per dollar)|
|Platinum Honors ($100,000+)||75% (2.62 points per dollar)|
Discover it miles
A unique bonus offer sets the Discover it Miles card apart from other travel cards. Instead of a flat bonus, the card is equal to the miles you earn in the first year. That means heavy consumers can get unprecedented value from what's on offer. For example, if you spend $2,650 a month on the card, the introductory offer will make you nearly $500. This is competitive even with tickets that include an annual fee.
After the first year, however, the bonus rate on the Discover it Miles is not convincing. At just 1.5 miles per dollar on all purchases, it doesn't match the Propel's fare.
Why Buy the Wells Fargo Propel Card?
- You want a competitive award rate for a travel card with no annual fee.
- They prefer flexible redemption options that don't sacrifice point value.
- You own or intend to enroll in the Wells Fargo Visa Signature card.
- You benefit from travel and shopping protection to save money.
How to use the Wells Fargo Propel card:
- If you don't currently have a Wells Fargo Visa Signature card, you should apply for one. You can transfer points earned on Propel to Visa Signature for higher point value when redeeming airfares.
- Use the card on all restaurants, travel, gas stations and select streaming services to earn bonus points.
- Use the card for travel and cell phone purchases to qualify for protection.
- Compare travel costs on Go Far Rewards to other travel sites to make sure you're getting the best deal. You can redeem points for a statement credit to cover travel purchases made on other websites.
- Keep an eye on eligible Amex offers to earn cashback on your daily spend.
- Visit Wells Fargo's Earn More Mall to earn extra points or refund your purchases.
Is the Wells Fargo Propel Card worth it?
If you're looking for a premium travel card with no annual fee, the Wells Fargo Propel card is one of the best options available. You get a competitive award rate and receive many of the same travel protections as other travel cards. The card is even more valuable to Wells Fargo Visa Signature cardholders, who can increase their points earned with the Propel fare and transfer them to Visa Signature for better point value (when redeeming airline tickets).
*Wells Fargo Visa Signature card information was collected independently from CreditCards.com. The issuer has not provided the information and is not responsible for its accuracy.
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