[Update] U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Review – 50,000 Point Sign Up Bonus ($750 Towards Airfare) + $325 Travel Credits

Update 9/25/22: There’s no longer the requirement of being an existing U.S. Bank customer in order to apply for  the Altitude Reserve card. Though approval odds might be better for someone with a checking account. (ht uscreditcardguide) Updated below.

(This card is not accepting new applications as of November 30, 2020. Open to applications again)

U.S. Bank has officially just launched their new Altitude Reserve credit card. As is tradition, it’s time for our in depth review of this new premium credit card.

u.s. bank altitude reserve

Quick Overview

  • Sign up bonus of 50,000 points after $4,500 in spend within the first 90 days
  • Annual fee of $400 for the primary cardholder. Authorized users can be added for $75 $0 each.
  • $325 in annual travel/dining credits. This is based on a card member year, rather than calendar year.
  • Card earns at the following rates:
  • Priority Pass Select Membership

Application Information

Who is eligible for this card?

  • To be automatically approved you need:
    • To be an existing U.S. Bank customer for at least 35 days 5 business days
    • Must be an existing U.S. Bank consumer customer
  • You can get the above requirement waived by applying in branch (you still need to be a U.S. Bank customer, but business is fine and the 35 day waiting period is waived).
  • This issue should be fixed in a future release
  • You’re considered an existing eligible customer if you have any of the following:
    • U.S. Bank Checking or Savings account
    • Certificate of Deposit
    • Mortgage
    • Home Equity Loan
    • Home Equity Line of Credit
    • Auto/Boat/RV Loan
    • Personal Loans and Lines
    • Private Banking account
    • Consumer Credit Card

You can view the best way to become eligible by clicking here. If you’re not recognized as an existing customer no hard pull will be done. There also seems to be some suggestion that the following helps:

  • Income of $60,000+
  • FICO score of 720+

What Credit Bureau Does U.S. Bank Pull For The Altitude Reserve?

This varies by the state you live in, you can view more information about this here.

What Credit Limit Will I Receive?

This varies from person to person. The minimum credit limit for this card is $5,000 (lower than the $10,000 limit required for other Visa Infinite cards).

Card Benefits

You’d expect significant card benefits for a card with a $400 annual fee. Let’s go into detail for each benefit this card offers.

$325 Annual Travel Credit

This card provides you with up to $325 in annual travel credits per card member year. Your account is credited whenever your card is used for purchases made directly (e.g not through a travel agent) from:

It doesn’t matter if you make the purchase with the primary or authorized user card it will still trigger the credit. Keep in mind the authorized user does not get their own $325 travel credit. The credits are applied automatically and you shouldn’t need to do anything for the credit to appear (as always it’s a good idea to keep an eye on this to ensure it does post automatically).

12 Complimentary Gogo Wi-Fi Passes

Things to know:

  • These passes are valid for 12 months from the date that you register your card.
  • Each flight segment (takeoff and landing) will use up one of these passes.
  • You must register for this benefit before flying
  • Same benefit as offered on the Visa FlexPerks card

Priority Pass Select Membership

  • Can enroll one card member in the program at a time.
  • First four visits and four individual accompanying guest visits are waived each Priority Pass Select membership reward (per membership year)
  • After the free visits have been used you will be charged $27 per person per visit

Global Entry or TSA Pre✔ Fee Credit

You can receive a statement credit of up to $100 when you use your card for the application fee on Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. You’re able to receive this statement credit once every 4 years.

GroundLink Black Car Service

  • 15% off the base rate for reservations booked and paid with using the Altitude Reserve
  • One time $30 promotional credit towards a booking

Silvercar

Rent an Audi A4 with no lines or paperwork from airport locations in select cities and receive a discount of up to 30% on rentals of two days or more.

Elite Hotel Benefits At Relais & Châteaux

If you book through the Visa Infite concierge and stay two nights at qualifying Relais & Châteaux properties you’ll receive Club 5C status. Normally you need to stay an average of 18 nights annually to receive this status. It gives you the following benefits:

  • Access to a special reservations line
  • Welcome gifts & amenities
  • Unique experiences/extras (e.g picnic lunch served by Little Nell at the top of Colorado’s Aspen Mountain)

An example of what you receive can be found on the website for the Wedgewood Hotel.

Metal Card

Card is made from metal.

Earning Rewards

50,000 Point Sign Up Bonus

This card has a sign up bonus of 50,000 points after $4,500 in spend within the first 90 days.

Ongoing Spend

  • Card earns at the following rates:
    • 3x on mobile payments (including LoopPay/MST transactions, see also this post)
    • 3x on travel purchases made directly with airlines, hotels, car rental companies, taxis, limousines, passenger trains and cruise line companies
    • 1x on all other purchases

Transferring FlexPerks Points

It’s possible to transfer FlexPerk points to Altitude points, but not vice versa. Keep in mind that FlexPerks have a maximum redemption value of 1.5¢.

Redeeming Rewards

Real-time Rewards 1.5¢ Per Point

Real-time rewards lets you redeem points for 1.5¢ per point, more details here.

Airfare, Hotels & Car Rental 1.5¢ Per Point

You can redeem points for airfare, hotels & car rental at a rate of 1.5¢ per point. Keep in mind that you need to use their booking system and that’s far from perfect. Usually it prices the same as elsewhere or by booking directly and you’ll still earn airline miles/credits.

Annual Fee 1.14¢ Per Point

Instead of paying the $400 annual fee in cash you can offset it by paying 35,000 in points for a value of 1.14¢ per point. Can also be used for authorized users.

Statement Credit 1¢ Per Point

You can redeem points for statement credit at a rate of 1¢ per point.

Our Verdict

This card is worth signing up for a lot of people:

  • 50,000 point sign up bonus (worth $500 or ~$750 towards flights)
  • $325 in travel credits
  • $400 annual fee

I don’t think travel credits are worth the same amount as straight cash, but even at 80% of face value that’s $260. Worst case scenario you use 35,000 points to offset the annual fee leaving you with $150 worth of points and $325 ($260 ‘cash value’) in travel credit.  By no means the best bonus ever, but well worth applying for. Obviously if you value the card benefits (and I think they are very weak) then the value proposition gets even better.

What’s really interesting for me and a lot of other people is the ability to get 3x points on mobile wallet purchases. This could be amazing for manufactured spending (and regular spending if you just use Visa gift cards purchased with this for your regular purchases) depending on what stores near you accept mobile payments. Even better for people with eligible Samsung Phones as the MST technology means it can be used on most swipe only payment terminals. We also took a look at the cheapest way to get Samsung Pay in this post.

I personally don’t think this card will be worth keeping after the first year for the majority of people, unless you can really make use of the 3x categories. Let me know if you agree/disagree in the comments below.

Follow-up note: US Bank has been aggressively shutting down accounts of those who buy Visa gift cards. Steer clear.

Tips/Things To Know

F.A.Q’s

I’ll answer the more commonly asked questions here.

What are my options for getting a Samsung

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458 Comments
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Hari
Hari (@guest_765855)
June 2, 2019 13:17

 William Charles DP : Priority Pass Membership can be opened in the name of anyone and not necessarily the card holder. The application page allows you to enter anyone’s name. My friend got the card delivered in his name but I used my address to be on the safer side.
App page screenshot: https://imgur.com/a/LxYgfrv

Hari
Hari (@guest_765857)
June 2, 2019 13:18

This helps for folks that already have PP through other cards and can get one for your friends/family. Makes this card worth keeping for me.

Kafka
Kafka (@guest_1452655)
September 26, 2022 04:57

Also for people with more than two family members (depending on kids’ ages and each lounge’s policies). Each of the four visits also comes with one guest.

Prologer
Prologer (@guest_778482)
July 4, 2019 07:41

It can be any name and any address.
Ordered the Priority Pass card for my wife and let them send it to our temporary international address without any problem.

Drew
Drew (@guest_796643)
August 11, 2019 14:40

Thanks! Was able to do the same for my wife

Floating Heads
Floating Heads (@guest_1202942)
June 8, 2021 19:00

 William Charles can this tip be pinned? One of the most helpful comments on here, but it’s super buried.

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller (@guest_1303180)
December 21, 2021 09:32

After getting this card, I travelled internationally recently and used a lounge access for first time .. I dont think I will ever loose this card .. The lounge access was so amazing

Beat2def
Beat2def (@guest_1342008)
March 3, 2022 08:19

Does it work for the Priority Pass Cap 1 Venture X card as well?
It doesn’t seem to work with Amex cards.

MoreSun
MoreSun (@guest_1520220)
December 27, 2022 18:32

Note once you do this it cannot be undone. I tried to get my PP back in my name and neither us bank nor pp could help. Maybe it can be undone by transferring the PP to an au and then transferring it back to the main account holder, but I haven’t tried that yet.

Penn Adam
Penn Adam (@guest_1567132)
March 2, 2023 10:51

Please share the steps if you were able to eventually transfer the PP membership to a your own name.

MoreSun
MoreSun (@guest_1567142)
March 2, 2023 10:57

I plan to try later this month. I’ll report back on how it goes!

MoreSun
MoreSun (@guest_1589216)
March 31, 2023 16:11

I called and US Bank said the PP can be issued in my name or my authorized user’s name but once it’s issued that’s it. They can’t change it or cancel it unless the card is closed.

John
John (@guest_1641730)
June 25, 2023 19:26

MoreSun It could be worth trying to get a new card number (report your card as lost), and then registering PP in your name on the new card number. I recently had to get a new card number, and it seems like I am able to register brand new PP. Too scared to try it myself under a different name though, since I’m already satisfied with my account under the old card number. But would be interested to know if it helps your situation.

MoreSun
MoreSun (@guest_1643394)
June 28, 2023 15:38

I can’t believe I forgot to update this! You are right! I stumbled on this last month when my card got lost and I had to order a replacement, it let me put my name in & I was able to submit for a PP. It’s been registered and everything, haven’t gotten a chance to test it yet though!

Alan
Alan (@guest_1662154)
July 29, 2023 11:16

Try to check it in the PP app, if it’s a valid account, the card will be there to use.

bicyclep
bicyclep (@guest_1824191)
April 1, 2024 19:45

Hari I do have a few of PP and I put them all under my name by pure inertia… will I be able to change any of them to another person? thx

Nick
Nick (@guest_1828748)
April 10, 2024 08:52

Applied 4/9 around 9pm, got 7-10 review message. Around midnight, I received approval email. 20k limit. If it was approved through manual review, I am impressed.

John
John (@guest_1828154)
April 9, 2024 08:30

How soon does the card arrives by mail ?? 2 days express ??

Terp
Terp (@guest_1828380)
April 9, 2024 15:52

I got mine in 2 days.

tony
tony (@guest_1829013)
April 10, 2024 16:44

how soon does points post , after statement close ? also when does AF post , last day of the month ?

Terp
Terp (@guest_1823727)
April 1, 2024 10:02

 William Charles, I think the terms have changed in a slightly positive way. Previously it said it wasn’t available to existing or previous cardmembers, at all, I believe. Now it says 5 years. See snippet from terms below (formatting is mine):

One-time 50,000 bonus Points will be awarded if you are approved for a new U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Card and eligible Net Purchases totaling $4,500 or more are made to your Account within 90 days after Account opening. Points are earned on eligible Net Purchases. Please allow 1-2 billing cycles for your bonus Points to be credited to your Account. Existing or previous U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite cardmembers are not eligible if you have received a new account bonus for this product in the last five years. Use of the Card is subject to terms and conditions of the U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Cardmember Agreement, which is provided at Account opening and may be amended from time to time. This offer may not be combined with any other bonus offer.

tony
tony (@guest_1829212)
April 10, 2024 22:30

how soon do points post , after statement close ? also when does AF post , last day of the month ?

Igor
Igor (@guest_1821135)
March 27, 2024 23:51

This is number one card in the list of best signup bonus, yet this page is severely outdated with wrong information. Is this website being abandoned?

Chris
Chris (@guest_1829258)
April 11, 2024 00:57

In all fairness, this is the original landing page for the cards debut… There’s seperate pages when the cards are updated.

Igor
Igor (@guest_1829261)
April 11, 2024 01:12

This is the page linked from the best credit card page…

Wayne
Wayne (@guest_1816903)
March 20, 2024 06:10

Approved in FL. Hopefully this will allow me to participate in future bank bonuses?

Abc
Abc (@guest_1813053)
March 13, 2024 12:45

This card does carry primary auto collision damage waiver, 6 hour trip delay insurance (can pay tax portion of ticket) $500 per ticket, and the Visa Infinite logo (rental car status matching and more). Solid contender for a travel card. Although lounge access is severely lacking compared to AMEX Platinum, Chase Sapphire Reserved, Cap1 VentureX.

Yellowtail
Yellowtail (@guest_1807237)
March 3, 2024 19:01

So many requests to update this post. Thank you!

007
007 (@guest_1806728)
March 2, 2024 15:34

Got 1k points (not 10k) as retention offer with no spend. We do use card a lot though

Abc
Abc (@guest_1813035)
March 13, 2024 12:16

1k sounds like a drop in the bucket. But at least you found value in using this card.

007
007 (@guest_1828976)
April 10, 2024 15:37

Thanks! It is worth it given our annual travel spend alone, Apple Cash 4.5x a plus.

For future reference, I think you’re supposed to HUCA to get a higher offer so I’ll try that next year.

Skibidi
Skibidi (@guest_1805851)
February 29, 2024 22:05

Are we allowed to apply for a second altitude reserve just cause? There is no upgrade or downgrade path so I am wondering if we can straight out apply for a second one

Ugh
Ugh (@guest_1799524)
February 18, 2024 12:53

I’ve had this card for 6.5 years, and honestly not sure why I keep it, except one day to begrudgingly pay for travel in their sketchy travel portal and redeem earned points. I really don’t understand why this is listed at the top of the best cards list. A few things are out of date in this article…

1) Priority Pass is 8 visits and then pay $35 (not 4 member + 4 guest, then $27)
2) Gogo Wifi benefit was removed at least two years ago, and was unable to even be used for the last year that it was “available”.

Ugh
Ugh (@guest_1799525)
February 18, 2024 12:56

Also, GroundLink and Silvercar benefits are gone, and have never been able to redeem RealTime Rewards for more than 1 cpp.

Dave
Dave (@guest_1820873)
March 27, 2024 19:24

I have successfully redeemed real-time rewards for 1.5x at hotels.