Tag Archives: credit cards

My 2 Favorite Hotels for Chase Hyatt Credit Card Anniversary Free Night Certificates

Last month, Ben at One Mile At A Time wrote a post about his choices for the best uses of your Chase Hyatt Credit Card anniversary free night certificates. But I think he left out two great choices in the states and one of them is a hotel I’ll be using mine at this year. As a reminder, each year Hyatt gives its cardholders an anniversary free night certificate. It can be used at any Hyatt category 1-4 hotel. There are some exclusions, but as Ben pointed out, there are still plenty of awesome choices all over the world. He did list the Hyatt Regency Vancouver, which is one of my favorite hotels in Vancouver, BC.

King room at the Hyatt Regency Vancouver.
Image source: https://vancouver.regency.hyatt.com/en/hotel/our-hotel.html

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What do I do When I’m Stumped Booking an Award Ticket?

Do you ever get frustrated when you’re booking an award ticket? Or trying to use points for hotel rooms? Or are those the stupidest questions ever? Of course you do. I do, we all do.  Even Grant gets his knickers in a twist every now and again when booking his travels!

A few months ago, Jennifer at Jetsetter’s Homestead wrote about what to do when your seat assignment sucks, as well as other travel mistakes she’s made. I like her writing style because she’s honest about when things go wrong and when she forgets to use her own best practices, but she’s also proactive about fixing situations as best she can. She talks about screwing up seat assignments, having to sometimes switch flights, and other costly mistakes she has made, and it got me thinking about the cost of travel, especially travel using miles and points, that goes beyond the fees we pay that are tacked onto award tickets or hotels booked with points. There’s a cost to the time we spend researching and actually booking our flights. The cost time ratio is one we all have to figure out.

I’m busy, both professionally and personally, as I’m sure you are too. And while I take enormous pleasure in the awesome privilege of traveling, it’s the travel and the planning of what to see and explore that actually brings me pleasure, not booking the trips. I know for some, it’s the game of accruing miles and points that’s the most fun. And for others, it’s the hunt for the perfect award space or crazy routing that’s possible on award trips. But I’m in neither of those camps. My camp is called Camp Get Me There In Business Class With A Lie Flat Seat. I have a feeling (due to the lack of business class award seats), that my camp is full of people just like me :)

Lufthansa A380 Lie Flat First Class Seat.
Image source: https://www.businesstraveller.com/news/2015/01/11/lufthansa-a380-what-you-need-to-know/

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$10 Off Frequent Traveler University (FTU) Expo & Signature Tickets (Chicago November 17-19)

Good morning everyone.  Today, tickets to the Frequent Traveler University (FTU) Travel Expo and FTU Signature go on sale.  Some of your/my favorite travel bloggers will be in Chicago in mid November to share their travel knowledge, photography, and stories from the road.  I was just at FTU Advanced in Minneapolis a few weekends ago and I had a great time.  I might even speak at this coming FTU conference about hacking Southwest Airlines, hacking US Bank FlexPoints, or my credit card retention/reconsideration strategies. Stay tuned…

FTU Travel Expo – Marriott O’Hare Hotel, Chicago – Saturday, November 18, 2017

FTU Travel Expo will comprise of 36,000 sq ft of exhibition space and 4 simultaneous educational stages. Upwards of 3,000 travelers are expected to attend. With sponsors such as Marriott and Norwegian Airlines, we will have travelers of all experience levels. Confirmed speakers include FTU regulars plus guest speakers Rudy Maxa, Nomadic Matt, Chris Guillebeau, Chris McGinnis & Johnny Jet, and more.

Tickets are $39, but if you purchase by July 31, you can save $10 with promo code FTUEARLY (link)

I spy a Travel with Grant blogger in attendance

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World of Hyatt Glitch: Anniversary Free Night Certificate Showing for Category 5-7 Properties (But Not Bookable)

YOU CANNOT BOOK CATEGORY 5-7 HYATT HOTELS WITH THE ANNIVERSARY FREE NIGHT CERTIFICATE – SORRY FOR THE CONFUSION AND CLICKBAIT-SOUNDING TITLE

(Hat Tip to the Travel Hacking 101 Facebook Group)

Good morning everyone.  Yesterday, I was in my World of Hyatt account and I wanted to see when my Chase Hyatt Credit Card Anniversary Free Night Certificate was set to expire.  To see when you certificate will expire, log into your Hyatt account, click the My Account header, and click on My Awards.  My certificate will expire on November 9, 2017, and I have to complete my stay by that date. While I was looking for hotels to use my certificate at, I discovered a glitch where the certificate will show up as a payment option when it is not supposed to.

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A Penny for your Thoughts: Tips for Getting the Best Currency Exchange

Last week. I wrote about My Simple Currency Exchange Rate Philosophy and helping my nervous friend find a more relaxed approach to spending money when he travels. Reader Danny wrote: “I think it might be an interesting topic for how people get better rates for getting currency exchanged similar to your Disneyland best practices (read The Ultimate Disneyland Playbook (Full of TWG Reader Tips!)). I always do the ATM, but I’d be curious to see if there are any other good ways.” Danny had a good idea, and indeed many of you replied with your ideas about getting the best exchange rate possible. I still think this topic is worth fleshing out a bit more, so let’s begin.

Image source: http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/A-brief-history-of-money-11059182.php

I’ll go first, as I’ve had many varied experiences over the years, and I think some of it has to do with the varied locations of my travels. For instance, when I was in Bali, cash was king. My lodgings did take credit cards, but otherwise, the local merchants wanted cash. The owner of the small family-run place I stayed at didn’t want me going to any money changer, bank, or ATM on my own. I was traveling alone and he was the personal friend of friends of mine, so he felt very protective of me. He took me for a twenty minute ride on the back of his scooter into Ubud where he escorted me to his money changer and handled the transaction for me. Later, when talking to other travelers, I learned that I got a really good exchange rate, but of course, a scenario like this is POSSIBLE, but not the norm. Continue reading