As we have mentioned in the introduction of our review, there are tow versions of this card. There is an annual fee and a no annual fee version and they have different sign up bonus promotions.
Up to 45,000 Bonus Miles - If you get approved for the annual fee version, then you could potentially get up to 45,000 bonus miles. Here is how it works. After your first purchase on the card, you get 25,000 bonus miles. It has to be a real purchase and not things like using cash advance or writing balance transfer checks.
Next, you need to spend $750 within 90 days of your card membership to be eligible for another 10,000 bonus miles. Together, this comes up to 35,000 bonus miles.
For the final 10,000 bonus miles, you need to do a balance transfer to earn them. Here is how it works. You will get one mile for every dollar that you transfer a balance over from another card. You can earn up to 10,000 additional bonus miles. That means that to earn this, you need to transfer $10,000 over. The balance transfer fee for the first 15 months is $10 or 3% of the BT (which ever is greater). So if you transfer $10,000, the balance transfer fee is $300. That means that each mile cost you 3 cents. Most frequent flyer will not pay 3 cents for one frequent flyer mile. So I really would not suggest that you transfer a balance just to earn the additional miles.
The other thing that I do not like about the balance transfer deal is that most people who apply for frequent flyer affinity cards do not carry a balance and hence, this aspect is almost redundant.
Up to 15,000 Bonus Miles - For the no annual fee version, you could potentially earn up to 15,000 bonus miles. The first 5,000 miles is earned after the first purchase (simple enough). The next 10,000 bonus miles is once again earned through a balance transfer. The terms are exactly identical to the annual version (which we have just covered).
So for all intents and purposes, the real sign up bonus for both cards are really 35,000 and 5,000 bonus miles respectively (if we leave out the balance transfer miles promotion).
Question is that even with this, is this a good promotion and what can the points get you? Let's zoom in on the annual fee version because 35,000 miles can get you places. For frontier airlines, you only need 20,000 miles to redeem for a domestic flight. If you have the annual fee card, you also need 5,000 less miles if you are redeeming for a companion ticket. Therefore, 35,000 miles gets you two round trip domestic tickets (with a companion). That is actually pretty good value for a sign up bonus.
Unfortunately, you cannot choose between the different versions and approval will depend on your credit score and other factors deemed important by Barclays and Frontier.