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

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
  • 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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Hari

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

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.

Prologer
Prologer

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

Thanks! Was able to do the same for my wife

Floating Heads
Floating Heads

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

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller

I applied for Reserve and Connect on same day yesterday
Got instant approval for Reserve
Got email for approval of Connect as well in the morning
Got 16k on reserve and 15k on connect as revolving credit

DP:
1/6
3/12
3/24

I’ve a basic checking account with them since 18 months with minimum balance of 2k maintained ever since

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller

As someone suggested, US BANK combined both my credit application into one inquiry as I applied on same day

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller

What is the recon number for US BANK??

DW
DW

Auto-denied 6/15/21.
– Called recon 1st time, rep said I was denied for too many new accounts in the past 12 months, wouldn’t even entertain the idea of trying to overturn the decision.
– Called recon 2nd time, rep spoke with supervisor to try and overturn the denial, couldn’t do it.
– Called recon 3rd time, rep simply said she would submit it for manual review and I would hear back in 5-7 biz days.
– After 10 days (6/26/21), received email saying I was approved with a $5k limit. Checked my online banking and the card was already added to my account!

DPs:
– Pulled TU in Utah. 4 HP before applying, 3 out of 4 over a year old from mortgage apps. 4th HP was from BoA Biz CC on 5/31/21, so less than a month old.
– TU score around 750 or higher.
– 1/6, 4/12 (although the reps said that I was 3/12 even though Credit Karma shows all my new accounts currently reporting. Not sure why.)
– Checking acct with US Bank since 10/29/20 from $300 bonus. Have only kept $2 in there since getting the bonus. Did the same bonus in 2019 and had closed the account as soon as $300 posted.

Angie
Angie

Might just be a fluke, but I accidentally applied for both the Connect and Altitude Reserve on the same day (2 days ago). The Connect page timed out on the approval step so I thought it didn’t go through. So far, I’ve only received one notification for a hard pull so it appears they got combined for being on the same day.
Both got approved for >20k limit. I do have an open checking account with them with the minimum 2k balance (left open from bonus last year).

Avi
Avi

Angie Congrats! How many other personal cards opened in the past 6/12/24 months?

Angie
Angie

6mo – 1
24mo -2
1 biz card in there

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller

I am planning to do this accident sometime in next month

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller

i got instant approval for altitude , waiting for response on connect

SleepyScroller
SleepyScroller

Got email for approval of Connect as well in the morning .. Got 16k on reserve and 15k on connect as revolving credit .. I have not created access to credit reports so have not received any notification of credit enquiries

DP:
1/6
3/24
3/12

I’ve a basic checking account with them since 18 months with minimum balance of 2k maintained ever since

CO
CO

Just got approved after manual review. $5k limit though, really US Bank?

No checking account with them, but I do have two other credit cards with them. $80k income, 16 inquiries in past 24 months, 778 score

FN
FN

CO Congratulations! Any 6/12 numbers? I want to wait until October when I’ll be 0/6 and 2/12 before applying. They’ve denied me for Cash+, Go and Altitude for too many inquiries/tradelines recently.

CO
CO

FN 1/6, 4/12
Good luck!

Sam Y.
Sam Y.

Better than the 2k limit on a 5k spending that I got with them for a previous CC. or a 500 limit at all.

DW
DW

I also just got approved for $5k limit after manual review. Had to call recon 3 times just to get the manual review put in, the first 2 calls told me that I was denied and they can’t overturn the decision. I don’t care about the limit, I’ll never max it out anyway, just wanted the card for the SUB, perks, and rewards rates.

KZ
KZ

My wife got the card and I am the authorized user. Am I still eligible for this offer if I apply for my own card now? The other question is, dinning is now considered a category for the credit, but it is not in the 3% reward category, so dinning will only earn 1%, right?

austin
austin

Do the $325 dining credits include delivery apps like DoorDash, GrubHub, UberEATS, etc?

Kumar
Kumar

Yes it does

Matthew
Matthew

Have a checking account with Usbank for 3 days, applied for this card and got pending, haven’t received any HP. Called in and was told relationship review is in process. ???

Nick
Nick

Is the Priority Pass Select Membership included after the first year? “As a U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® cardmember, you can access a worldwide network of airport VIP lounges with your complimentary 12 month Priority Pass™ Select Membership.”

MT
MT

Applied March 12, went pending, status line denied as of March 15. Called reconsideration and told 3 accounts under a year old was reason for decline and could not be approved.

beat2def
beat2def

Business or personal accounts? Probably personal, right?