Tag Archives: Frequent Flyer Miles

My Travel Philosophy for Redeeming Miles vs. Paying Cash for Flights (w/ Account Balances as of March 2020)

Good morning everyone, happy Friday!  I just finished listening to the Miles to Memories podcast (latest episode) and enjoyed listening to them talk about Disney when they redeem miles vs. pay cash for flights.  I don’t have a hard and fast rule that I live by, so I thought it would be fun to share my travel philosophy of when I redeem miles vs. pay cash for flights.  I specifically mention flights because I plan to write a similar article about hotels and didn’t want to make this article too long.  Lastly, when I use the word cash, that could mean paying for the flight with a credit card, or paying with an airline gift card, or using credit card rewards to pay for the flight – basically anything other than booking an award ticket with airline miles.

I also think it is important to share how many credit card reward points I have, since my thinking would be much different if I had 1,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Points vs. 1 million Chase Ultimate Reward Points.  With that said, here are my transferable points balances, as of March 2020, from smallest to largest:

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Alaska Airlines 3 Day Hawaii Sale (Fares Starting at $99 One Way)

Good morning everyone.  I just received an email from Alaska Airlines regarding their 3 day fare sale to Hawaii (fare sale runs now through 11:59pm PT on 3/5), with travel between April 21 and May 20.  Looks like this sale is only for California cities and here are a few sample fares:

  • Los Angeles – Maui: Starting at $99 one-way
  • San Diego – Kauai/Kona: Starting at $99 one-way
  • San Jose – Kona/Honolulu/Maui/Kauai: Starting at $99 one-way

I looked at sample flights from San Jose (SJC) and there are deals to these 4 Hawaiian cities:

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2 Buy Miles / Points Promos Ending Soon: American Airlines (55%) & Southwest Airlines (40%)

Good afternoon everyone.  I was working on my Buy Miles & Points Page and found a few offers ending soon.  Always check the math to make sure that buying miles & points makes sense for you.  Do not buy miles & points speculatively unless you have a use in mind.  With that said, here are 2 offers that end this week.  Up first, American Airlines is offering up to a 55% bonus + 10% discount, depending on the number of American Airlines AAdvantage Miles you purchase.  This offer expires on March 6.

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8 Buy Miles / Points Promos Ending Soon: Hilton (100%), American (55%), Avianca (125%), United (85%), IHG (75%), Radisson (25%), Hyatt (25%) & Etihad (20%)

Good afternoon everyone.  I was working on my Buy Miles & Points Page and found a few offers ending soon.  Always check the math to make sure that buying miles & points makes sense for you.  Do not buy miles & points speculatively unless you have a use in mind.  With that said, here are 8 offers that end this month.  Up first, Hilton is offering a 100% bonus, when you purchase at least 10,000 Hilton Honors Points.  This offer expires today – February 19.

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5 Things You Should Know Before Getting the Chase Sapphire Reserve

The media has been abuzz since the Chase Sapphire Reserve was first announced in 2016, and with the recent annual fee increase, many people are wondering if this card is still the premium card it once was. If you haven’t yet taken the plunge, there are a few things that you might want to know before applying. Here’s a complete rundown of one of my favorite credit cards: the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Yes, there’s an annual fee, but…

…it comes with a ton of perks, which I’ll talk about in detail later. In fact, the Chase Sapphire Reserve annual fee has been the talk of the town over the past few weeks because Chase just upped the annual fee from $450 to $550. Honestly, this change hasn’t been as catastrophic as some folks projected it to be; the extra hundred bucks is peanuts compared to the benefits and entitlements that Chase already had. Chase has added partner benefits to offset the bump, and they’ll be more useful for some people than others. Either way, if you take advantage of your card benefits, you’ll easily end up saving more than $550 per year.
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