Category Archives: Hotels + Points

Work from Home Diary 11: My Thoughts on TWG Turning 7 Years Old Today

Good morning everyone, I hope you had a great weekend.  I started sharing my thoughts regarding working from home in a series of Work from Home Diary posts.  Feel free to share your work from home feelings in the comments section below.  For today’s update, I wanted to let you know that Travel with Grant (the blog) turned 7 years old today!  Wow, I can’t believe it’s been 7 years since I started blogging in May 2013.  Back then, I talked about Award Wallet, ITA Matrix, Credit Karma / Credit Sesame, using BA Avios to fly to Hawaii, converting Hawaiian Airlines miles to Hilton points, $500 Visa Gift Cards at Office Depot, and much more.

I thought about sharing my 7 favorite blog posts or top 7 most read blog posts, but thought I would share my thoughts on blogging and my continued goals as a blogger.  Back when I started my blog, I was a ferocious reader of Frequent Miler (still am), Million Miles Secrets, The Points Guy, Frugal Travel Guy, Mile Value, and Travel Blogger Buzz (love you George).  These were blogs that I looked up to and admired for their content and entertainment.  I’m not a full time blogger (and never have been), but the dream of working on a secluded beach with a laptop on my lap and big floppy hat on my head always made me smile. Continue reading

PSA: Check Amazon Gift Card Balance for Missed Allowance Reloads

Good afternoon everyone, I hope your week is going well.  Since I have several credit cards and only use a few on a daily basis, I put small recurring charges on some of my cards so that the credit card statements are generated every month.  I do this for a 3 main reasons:

  1. If you do not use no annual fee credit cards for several months, the bank may decide that you do not need that credit card and may close it automatically for you.
  2. I have 2 Bank of America Better Balance Rewards Credit Cards (no longer available) where I get a quarterly bonus of $30 per card (I have a linked BofA checking account) for making a purchase and paying my bill on time.  I don’t want to manually make a purchase or risk forgetting to make a monthly purchase on those cards.  It’s an easy $30 bonus x 4 quarters x 2 cards = $240 cash.
  3. I have credit card referral links on my blog and if a reader signs up for the card using my referral link, I get a referral bonus (airline miles or hotel points).  The bonus points do not automatically transfer to the airline or hotel account if a credit card statement is not generated.

For those reasons, I use Amazon Allowance to automatically charge $5 to several cards every month.  The funds are automatically added to my Amazon gift card balance and I usually receive several of the below emails on the 15th of the month.  But unfortunately, for some reason, I only received 2 emails, instead of the usual 8.  I did some digging and it looks like only 2 of my Amazon Allowances processed correctly and the 8 other allowances were skipped.  If you have allowances set up, I recommend checking your Amazon account to see if they processed correctly.

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Bank of America Changes: Cryptocurrency is Cash Advance, Simplified Foreign Transactions & No Payment Return Envelope

Good morning everyone.  I was reviewing my April Bank of America credit card statements and noticed a few changes to the Credit Card Agreement.  I believe these changes go into effect immediately for all Bank of America credit cards, but check your April credit card statement to be sure.  There are 3 main changes that I will cover in this post.  The first is that cryptocurrency purchases will be treated as a cash advance (like money orders, travelers checks, casino gaming chips, bail bonds, etc.).  I believe many other credit card companies have a similar policy regarding cryptocurrency.  When you make a cash advance transaction, you do not earn any rewards, but instead start accruing interest right away.  The next 2 changes involve foreign transactions and payments.

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Google Analytics: What Blog Posts Are People Reading? (Year to Date vs. Last 2 Weeks)

Good morning everyone, I hope your week is going well.  I just read Frequent Miler’s post this morning (How Frequent Miler (the business) will survive COVID-19) and thought it would be interesting to see what Travel with Grant blog posts people read year to date (January 1 – March 31) vs. what blog posts people read during the last 2 weeks (March 18 – March 31).  I listed the top 10 posts for each period of time and their corresponding pageviews during that time.  Red text represents blog posts on both lists.  At the end of this post, I will also provide some analysis of the results below.

Posts for January 1 – March 31 (Year to Date)

Page Title Pageviews
How-To Guide: Activate a Gift Card and Create a PIN 8,377
Send Money to Friends (or Other Bank Accounts) Instantly with Zelle (Formerly Chase QuickPay / clearXchange) 5,374
If I Could Only Keep 5 Credit Cards with Annual Fees… 4,175
How to Cancel 1 Passenger on a Multi-Passenger Southwest Airlines Reservation 3,951
Chime Card Prepaid Reloadable Debit Card – Instant Cash Back Card 3,779
Print USPS and UPS Shipping Labels from your PayPal Account 3,479
Walmart.com Orders Instantly Cancelled? Try Walmart’s Online Chat 3,113
Trim Saved Me Another $15 on my Comcast Xfinity Cable Bill 3,033
Changes to $250 Resort Credit & Point Transfers for American Express Hilton Aspire Credit Card (Effective May 1, 2020) 2,589
How to Convert an Existing Discover Credit Card into a Different Discover Credit Card Online 2,503

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Redeem IHG, Hawaiian & Frontier Miles for Gift Cards with Points.com (Including Amazon, Walmart & More)

Good morning everyone, I hope your weekend is going well.  A few days ago, I read that Best Western suspends use of points toward gift cards or merchandise and that Southwest Rapid Rewards Can Not Be Redeemed For Gift Cards Due To Covid-19.  I did some digging and found out that it is possible to redeem IHG Rewards Club Points, Hawaiian Airlines Miles, and Frontier Airlines Miles for gift cards (both physical and electronic) with Points.com.  In this post, I will show you how to redeem points from those 3 programs into gift cards and calculate the value from these redemptions (spoiler: the redemptions are not very good).  Here is the complete list of gift card options available as of today (I combined the list into 1 big image).

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