Good morning everyone. As we wrap up Q1, the targeted credit card offers for Q2 are just now arriving. Here are 3 offers that I have received in the last 2 days and I will share my logic with you on whether or not they are worth pursuing. Up first, I have the Chase Hyatt Credit Card with 4,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 between April 1 and June 30. 4,000 Hyatt Points is worth $60-$80 to me, but I am not excited to spend $4,000 to get up to $80 in return (2% bonus). I could get 4,000 Hyatt Points by generating 4,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Points on my Chase Ink Plus. That would only require $800 of 5x spending and I can do that in 1 day with gift card purchases from PayPal Digital Gifts on eBay. I am going to pass on this offer.
Good morning everyone, happy Friday! I am heading to Portland tonight for a quick weekend trip with my brother, but I wanted to get the word out that Dan from Points with a Crew (yeah, that guy that has 6 kids) and me (the guy that sometimes acts like a 6 year old kid) will be co-organizing a miles and points travel meetup in the Bay Area.
- When: Sunday, April 2, 2017 from 7-10pm
- Where: Staybridge Suites San Francisco Airport, 1350 Huntington Ave, San Bruno, CA 94066 (Google Map) <– Dan picked this location, I would have gone with the usual In-N-Out…
Good morning everyone, happy Thursday. My last App-O-Rama (where I applied for several new credit cards at the same time) was back in mid December 2016. I usually wait 3+ months between App-O-Ramas, so the time has come to start my next round of credit card applications. I am going to list the credit cards I have in mind in the order in which I will probably apply for them. If you have any feedback on my strategy or think I am missing or applying for the wrong credit cards, please leave a comment below. Without further ado, let’s begin…
1. American Express SPG Business Credit Card – 25,000 SPG points after spending $5,000 in 90 days and an additional 10,000 SPG points after spending $3,000 in 120 days. No annual fee the first year, then $95 in the second year.
With the impending merger with Marriott, this might be my last opportunity to apply for the SPG business credit card. I can’t pass up this opportunity. 35,000 SPG points are worth ~$700 in hotel nights and airfare (and possibly much more).
2. Bank of America MERRILL+ Credit Card – 50,000 points after spending $3,000 in 90 days. No annual fee.
Yesterday, the news broke that you could now redeem your Alaska Airlines companion fare code for flights on Alaska Airlines and Virgin America. That is great news, especially if you have 1 or more companion fare codes and if Virgin America serves the routes you want to fly. I’ve written about the Alaska Airlines Companion Fare Code a few times:
- Using the Alaska Airlines Credit Card Companion Fare
- Alaska Airlines Companion Pass Code Posted 16 Days after Annual Fee is Billed
The overlooked part of the news from yesterday is that Virgin America has their own less-than-amazing companion discount code. No one ever talks about that code, but I am going to compare the Alaska Airlines companion fare code to the Virgin America companion discount code and show you which code is better.
First things first, if you have the Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa Signature Credit Card (personal or business version), you will get the companion fare codes. To locate those codes, log into your Alaska Airlines account and click Valid under Discount and Companion Fare Codes. You will see all the companion fare codes listed, their expiration date (travel must be booked by that date) and the terms and conditions of the companion fare code.
Last week, I offered advice on how to use an award booking service. Now it’s time to tell you which award booking service I recommend and WHY! Over the past seven years or so, I’ve tried at least 6 different award booking services and have established a great relationship with JuicyMiles, run by Adam from PointMeToThePlane.com
I call it a relationship because I see it as a partnership, a braintrust of sorts. You see, I believe in hiring professionals to fill in the gap in the areas of travel, or any area of life really, where I don’t seem to have the best skill set. I like to get better at what I do well and let others help with my weaknesses. I’m really great at accumulating miles and points, really great at picking accommodations and planning travel adventures, and really really great at having a wonderfully memorable time when I get somewhere. But the actual booking of the award trips… that’s not one of my strengths.
Like you, I want to get the best possible value for my miles and points. I also, perhaps like you, have some particulars in terms of how I like to travel (business class, fully lie flat seats, etc). So let’s look at some of the tips I mentioned in working with these services and you’ll see why JuicyMiles excels!
- Sometimes I do a bit of research ahead of time and sometimes I don’t. I figure JuicyMiles award bookers know the alliances, airlines, and miles needed way better than I do. After all, they’re doing this all the time and have seen and heard it all. They never mind my follow-up questions once they present me with my options. Rather than being in a rush, they seem to care more about my satisfaction with my award trip routing.