U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card review: Underrated premium rewards, with limits

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In a Nutshell

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card doesn’t have the reputation that many other premium rewards credit cards have, but it packs plenty of rewards and benefits potential. It features a big sign-up bonus and nice $325 travel credit, but you’ll have to weigh those perks against a big $400 annual fee. You’ll also have limited redemption options with your points compared with many other premium travel cards, and the card is only available to existing U.S. Bank customers.
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This offer is no longer available on our site: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Pros Cons
Big sign-up bonus Equally big spending requirement for the sign-up bonus
Nice travel credit High $400 annual fee
Great rewards value when redeemed for travel Some limits on your redemptions
Extra rewards points in several categories Only available to existing U.S. Bank customers
Convenient travel perks  

6 things you need to know about the U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card

1. Only existing U.S. Bank customers can apply

Although the U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card offers plenty of benefits and perks, they’re not available to just anyone. In fact, you have to be an existing U.S. Bank customer with an eligible account to apply.

U.S. Bank defines existing customers as anyone who has had an account or financial product for at least five business days prior to application. That list of eligible accounts includes many options — including a checking or savings account, mortgage or credit card — but it needs to be there for your application to be approved.

2. Big sign-up bonus, if you can afford it

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card features a valuable sign-up bonus, but it might be out of reach for many people.

You’ll earn 50,000 points, but only after spending $4,500 during the first 90 days after the account is opened. If you can spend that much without going over your budget, you’ll walk away with a sign-up bonus that’s worth as much as $750 when you redeem your points for travel.

3. Rich rewards for some everyday spending

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card offers you the chance to earn enhanced rewards for some of your everyday spending.

You’ll earn …

  • Five points for every $1 you spend on prepaid hotels and car rentals you book directly with the Altitude Rewards Center
  • Three points per $1 spent on eligible travel purchases
  • Three points per $1 spent on purchases made with a mobile wallet like Apple Pay
  • One point on most other purchases

If you make those kinds of purchases often, you might be able to stack up points quickly.

But keep in mind that you can’t stack these bonus rewards rates on top of each other. If you make a travel purchase through a mobile wallet, you’ll receive only three points, not six points.

4. Generous travel credits

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card comes with a $325 annual credit.

That credit is applied as a statement credit when you make eligible purchases directly from restaurants or bars or from airlines, hotels, car rental agencies, trains, cruises, taxis and limousines. But U.S. Bank doesn’t specify whether rideshares like Uber and Lyft and homestays like Airbnb qualify.

5. Annual fee is high, but not unreasonable

At first glance, the $400 annual fee might seem high.

But if you’re in the market for a premium credit card, it’s important to keep in mind the U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card’s annual fee is actually less expensive than what many of its competitors charge. For instance, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® carries a $550 annual fee with similar benefits.

6. Plenty of travel perks

Like any good premium credit card, the U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card features a handful of travel perks.

  • You’ll receive a statement credit of up to $100 to apply for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck once every four years.
  • You’ll receive complimentary Priority Pass Select membership for 12 months, which gives you access to more than 1,300 airport lounges around the world. After that, if you sign up for a membership, your first four visits each year are free.

Understanding your points and redemption options

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card offers competitive travel redemptions.

You’ll get the most value when you redeem your points for travel-related purchases made directly with airlines, hotels, car rental agencies, trains, cruises, taxis and limousines.

But keep in mind that you may not get a great redemption value if you plan your trip through a travel booking website like Expedia or Orbitz.

There are other limitations on your redemptions. We find it odd that you can’t redeem your points for hotel stays that cost less than $500, or for car rentals that cost less than $250. It’s also unclear whether homestays (like Airbnb) and rideshares (like Uber and Lyft) qualify for the top redemption value.

You can also redeem your points for cash back, gift cards and merchandise, but you might get a lower redemption value in these cases.

However you redeem your points, you will most likely need to use them through U.S. Bank’s rewards program. Unlike many other premium credit cards, U.S. Bank doesn’t list any travel partners where you can transfer your points.

Who this card is good for

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card is good for frequent travelers who prefer to book their trips directly with airlines, hotels and other providers. This card comes with enough perks to help cover your costs, and the $325 travel credit provides a straightforward way to help balance out the $400 annual fee.

But if you want the flexibility to transfer your points to a hotel or airline rewards program, the U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card might not be the best option. U.S. Bank doesn’t list any transfer partners for your points, and the minimums for hotel and car rental redemptions could limit your ability to redeem for some forms of travel.

Plus, remember that you need to be an eligible existing U.S. Bank customer to apply for the card. If you’re not interested in any other U.S. Bank products, it might not be worth considering this card at all.


Not sure this card is right for you? Consider these alternatives.

The U.S. Bank Altitude® Reserve Visa Infinite® Card packs a lot of value, but it’s not for everyone. If you’re not sold, you might want to take a look at another U.S. Bank credit card, as well as some of these other travel cards:


About the author: Tim Devaney is a personal finance writer and credit card expert at Credit Karma. He’s a longtime journalist who prides himself on being a good storyteller who can explain complex information in an easily digestible wa… Read more.