Azamara Visa Credit Card

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Picture of Azamara Visa
By : Mr Credit Card

Introduction

The Azamara Club Visa allows you to earn points when you make cruise ticket purchases with them and more interestingly, allows you to redeem points for cruises not just with Azamara, but also with Celebrity Cruise and Royal Caribbean cruise as well.
 

Card Details

Earn Points - With this card, you will earn 2X on Azamara Club Cruises® and our sister brands Celebrity Cruises® and Royal Caribbean®. You will earn 1X on everything else.

Annual Fee - The annual fee is $69 (one of the rare cruise credit cards with an annual fee along with Celebrity Cruise)

Foreign Transaction Fee - This card has no foreign transaction fees (which mean you can use your card when you take tours at ports).

Sign Up Bonus - You will earn 10,000 bonus points after your first purchase on the card (within 65 days of approval).

Secondly, you get a %50 discount off an AirChoice Flight (which is the flight to your port of departure when you book your cruise with Celebrity).

Anniversary Bonus - Every year, you could earn 10,000 bonus points as long as you spend $10,000 points in a calendar year.
Secondly, you get a $50 discount off AirChoice once a year.
 

MyCruise Reward Program

Below is a screen shot of the latest 2016 redemption chart for the MyCruise program. Note that this program is separate from Azamara's Le Club Voyage program. With the Le Club Voyage program, you earn points with cruise you take for Elite Status and you get benefits like 2 free laundry bags, free internet for a certain amount of time etc. However, the points you earn towards your Le Club Voyage program does not get you any free cruise. To do that, you need to be part of the MyCruise program which you could only get with this card.

You will also notice that there are redemptions for Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises because they are all part of the same brand.


 

Competition

The Azamara Visa is one of the rare cruise credit cards which actually charges an annual fee. The other one being their sister brand Celebrity Cruise X. In fact, their features are almost identical except for the fact that the Azamara card does not provide benefits like "Buy One Get One 50% Off on Specialty Dining", 10% discount of private journeys and premium beverage package.

However, compared to other cruise credit cards (see table on this page), this card offers an anniversary bonus of 10,000 points and $50 discount off ChoiceAir.

Having said all that, if you look at the reward redemption rate at the chart above, the redemption rate is at best 1% (ie 10,000 points gets you $100 in value). The earning rate for this card (and other cruise cards as well) is not the best either. Let's use the following example:

Let us assume that you spend $5,000 a year on cruise (Azamara) and $50,000 on non-cruise expenses. With this card, you will earn ($5,000 X 2) + (50,000) = 60,000 Points, which is $600 in value. Compare this if you use the < a href="//www.askmrcreditcard.com/barclays/arrival">Barclaycard Arrival Plus instead, which allows you to earn 2X on everything. You will end up earning (55,000 X 2) = 110,000 points which is $1,100 in value. Though the Barclay card has a $89 annual fee, this is more than made up with the double points you earn. With the Arrival card, you can book any cruise trip you want, get the best deal and use your points for statement credits. With the Azamara Club, you can only use the points you have earned and cannot use it with other discounts that you get from being a Le CLub Voyange member.
 

Our Take

The Azamara Visa is targeted to those who cruise with Azamara and their other sister brands like Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise. I mentioned this earlier but I will mention it again. All cruises have their reward program which rewards you with elite tier status and these come with benefits like discounts on special dining, free internet minutes or free laundry bags. However, you cannot earn free cruises with the reward program (in Azamara's case - the Le Club Voyage). To get a free cruise, you actually have to get this credit card and earn MyCruise Points (which is separate from Le Club Voyage) or get a credit card with reward program that allows you to redeem points for cruises.

For those of you who like to cruise with Azamara, this is a good card to get. Not only can you redeem for free Azamara cruises but also with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise.

However, aside from earning 2X on Azamara cruises, this card is not really good for racking up points on other spending. If you want to get more value for your credit card spending, you might want to consider a card like the Barclaycard Arrival Plus because you can earn 2X for all spending and get more bang for the buck on your credit card and cruise spending. Having said that, if you are a cruise junkie and always sail with Azamara, you'll probably get this card anyway. And if you pair it up with their Le Voyage reward program, you can expect to save quite a bit on your cruise trips.