Best Western Mastercard® credit card Review

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Reward yourself with a free night's stay. You could get a FREE night with the Best Western Rewards® Mastercard® credit card‡.

Looking for a no annual fee travel credit card with a free hotel night welcome bonus? OK. How about no minimum spend to achieve your bonus? Makes sense. Free room upgrades? You bet.

The Best Western Mastercard® credit card comes with a strong 20,000 point welcome bonus and no minimum spend requirement. There are no black-out dates and points never expire.  Not only that, when you get the card, you automatically get bumped to Gold Member status. As a Gold member you earn an extra 10% in rewards. But you also get free room upgrades when available!

With no annual fee and a free nights stay welcome bonus, why wouldn’t you get the card? It truly is a free nights stay. All you have to do is activate the card with a purchase and the hotel night is yours.

Best Western Mastercard® credit card Benefits

One Best Western Rewards point equals about .90%, when you redeem for hotel stays. Redeem for cash or other merchandise and the value could be half.

You earn 5 points per dollar spent on Best Western stays, giving you approximately 4.5% per dollar spent on the credit card alone, when redeeming for hotel nights, which is our recommendation to maximize value. For non-Best Western spend you earn 1 point per dollar spent, which comes out to .90% – not exactly great value, but not terrible either.

The real value in the Best Western Mastercard® credit card is in the welcome bonus, which gives you 20,000 points.

The 20,000 point welcome bonus is yours after making your first purchase – it could even be a pack of gum. With no annual fee, that makes the bonus hotel night truly free.

Best Western Hotels are ranked from Tier 1 to Tier 4, with Tier 1 hotels only requiring 8,000 points per night and tier 4 hotels requiring up to 36,000 points. There are plenty of great options available at the 20,000 point range. As an example, we found the Best Western Toronto North York Hotel & Suites available mid-week for 16,000 points.

The Best Western Mastercard® credit card also gives you automatic upgrade to Gold status. Gold status will get you an additional 10% in Best Western Rewards when you stay at a Best Western Hotel, and it will get you free room upgrades – which we love. Now not all hotel will have an upgrade available, but it’s free to ask, and if available, why not?

Here’s a summary of the perks that help the Best Western Mastercard® credit card stand-out from the pack:

  1. Annual Fee: There is no annual fee for this travel card – not ever.
  2. 5 points per dollar spent at Best Western Hotels
  3. 1 point per dollar spent everywhere else
  4. 20,000 bonus points: Earned after making your first purchase.
  5. Status upgrade: Get automatically enrolled in Gold status, and you can even get Diamond status if you spend $10,000 in eligible purchases on your credit card within one year.

– Purchase interest rate: 19.99%
– Balance transfer interest rate: 22.99%
– Cash advance interest rate: 22.99%


There is no specified minimum income requirement, since the card is not a World Elite MasterCard. That said, we’d recommend you have at least $15,000 in income.

Worth It?

This card offers tremendous value in three respects. First, with no annual fee you get a free nights welcome bonus. Why not get the card for that reason alone? Second, if you ever stay at a Best Western Hotel, you’ll get 5 points per dollar spent, which is a rewards rate of 4.5% – unbeatable.

Sponsored advertising. MBNA is a division of The Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD) and TD is not responsible for the contents of this site including any editorials or reviews that may appear on this site. For complete information on this MBNA credit card, please click on the “Apply” button.

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Article comments

Gary says:

I have this card and currently have approx. 150,000 points. Could you clarify the following for me please. If you are staying at a BW and enjoy a meal on their premises you receive 5X the points. Would the 5X points still apply if were not a hotel guest but stopped by for supper? Also would you receive 5X the points if you ordered food via a delivery service. Thanking you in advance for your reply.

Daniel from GreedyRates says:

Hi Gary,
You have quite the stash of points! On your two questions, I speculate that meals purchased on premises are eligible for the 5X point multiplier (even if you are paying for someone else’s meal) and that food ordered via delivery (assuming you mean take out or a service like ubereats) would not be eligible for the extra points. That said, don’t take my word for it- get the definitive word from customer support at 1-888-876-6262, between Monday to Sunday, 7 a.m. to 12 a.m. EST. Alternately, you can also reach out to Chat Online (at the bottom of the page). Hope you get the answer you’re looking for.

Kandy C says:

This is a load of balcony!!! I activated my best western rewards MasterCard because supposedly you’ll receive 20,000 points after 6-8 weeks. It’s been months and I keep calling and they keep transferring me around to different people who all say the other person can help you better and they keep saying you only have 110 points. Every time I call they say they say I fixed it and you’ll see your points in 2 weeks and nothing ever changes. I went to Niagara Falls to stay the night at best western and was extremely disappointed ☹️ because I could not use my points and had to turn back. I would not normally stay at best western because they are lower in quality than hotels like The Hilton but because of their supposed promotion, I went to try it out. I guess they have to lie to people to get them to use their credit card.

Daniel from GreedyRates says:

Hi Kandy,
Thanks for sharing your incredibly frustrating experience. What’s worse than bad customer service is the lack of a follow through, especially since you were told the points would show up a few times. Assuming you’re going to be cancelling this card, have you found a potential replacement? Here’s hoping you have a better time with the next card.

starchoice says:

If I use the MBNA Best Western card in the U.S., am I getting the best value in points earn, factoring in the foreign exchange add-on or would I be better off using a no ForEx card with cashback?

Nate Siegel says:

Hey Starchoice,

Good question! We can do a little math for you to help you determine which card gives the most value in the US, but we’ll have to make some assumptions in order to do an accurate comparison. For example, we’ll compare the cards for their base earning rates and not on accelerated rates, to get a baseline. The MBNA Best Western card earns 1 BW Rewards point per $1 spent, and according to our Loyalty Program Bible each point is worth around $0.006, so you’re getting 0.6% on each $1 spent before the foreign transaction fee (2.50%) reduces your total to -1.90%.

Even a credit card with no cash back or other bonuses will benefit you more in the United States than this. For example, Home Trust has their Preferred card, which offers 1% cash back and no foreign transaction fees. This means you’re avoiding a 2.50% charge and gaining another 1.00% when purchasing in USD. Even when Home Trust changes the card in 2020 to make the cash back apply only on Canadian purchases, the card will still be leagues ahead of the Best Western alternative. Hope that helps!


Digant says:

Is there any expiry period to use the points?

Nate Siegel says:

Hey Digant,

Thanks for coming to GreedyRates. Part of the value behind Best Western Rewards Points is that they don’t expire, ever! You can save them up for as long as you need and still get as much value from them as if you had redeemed them immediately. This’ll suit you well if you don’t make frequent eligible purchases or don’t otherwise use the card often, or if you’re saving up for something with a large minimum redemption amount.


Stephen Denhartog says:

How long after I fulfill my commitment that the points are available to me?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Stephen,

Great question. We assume you’re referring to the MBNA Best Western Rewards card’s generous 20,000-point introductory bonus, which you earn after making an initial purchase. It’s common for there to be a delay between when you qualify for the bonus and when you actually receive it and digging into the fine print to figure this out is pretty annoying. Thankfully, that’s what we’re here for. After a short dive into the legalese, we found this line: “Please allow 8-10 weeks from the transaction date for bonus points to be posted to your points account.” This was in the section referencing the bonus, so try to remember exactly when you made your first purchase with the card, add two or two-and-a-half months, and that’s when you can expect the MBNA Rewards points to hit your account. Have fun!


Alex says:

Is there a time limit to take advantage of the free hotel night after receiving the card?

BrengleParsons says:

How do I apply for this card

GreedyRates says:

Hey Brengle, thanks for the question. If you’d like to apply for the Best Western Rewards Mastercard, you simply have to click the link in the article.

GreedyRates Staff

Pierre Milette says:

Can i have the 1.99% promotion ?

GreedyRates says:

Hi Pierre, thanks for posting your awesome comment with us. If you’d like the balance transfer promotion from the Best Western Rewards Mastercard, you just need to get approved first. Cardholders whose applications are approved can transfer balances from other credit cards and banks to the Rewards Mastercard within 90 days of receiving it. When you’re approved, you can simply go online or call and request a transfer, then move a sum of money up to your available credit limit. Let us know if you need any assistance with your application via the link above, and we’ll make sure you get help. Thanks again.

GreedyRates Staff