Tag Archives: Hotel Loyalty Points

My Experience Booking Vacasa Vacation Rentals with Wyndham Rewards Points

Good afternoon everyone, I hope your week is going well.  A few weeks ago, Greg the Frequent Miler wrote 2 great articles about using Wyndham Rewards Points to book Vacasa vacation rentals (article 1 and article 2).  I wanted to provide my experience booking 2 Vacasa vacation rentals, so I followed the 4 steps that Greg laid out in the second article:

How to book Vacasa Vacation Rentals with Wyndham points

Here’s the step by step process that I recommend:

    1. Start your search here: www.vacasa.com/search?maxbeds=1&place=/usa/
      This link filters to a maximum of 1 bedroom. If you want more than 1 bedroom, change the filter, but keep in mind that 2 bedroom units cost twice as many points.
    2. Use the Vacasa website to find properties that are available for cash rates for your dates of interest. I recommend finding at least three options that would work for you, if possible.
    3. Email Wyndham to inquire about those properties and dates, here: triprewards.fulfillment@wyndham.com OR call: (506) 646-2943
    4. Put a reminder on your calendar 31 days or more before your stay to remind you to cancel if it doesn’t look like the stay will work out. Bookings are non-refundable within 30 days.

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Attend FTU Virtual Seminar on Saturday April 10 ($25) or Free with FTU Online Annual Membership

Good afternoon everyone, I hope your week is going well.  If you have no plans this coming Saturday (April 10), I highly recommend attending the FTU Virtual Seminar (tickets available for $25).  The seminar starts on Saturday at 11am ET / 8am PT.  I really enjoyed attending the first FTU Virtual Seminar back on December 12 and I’m sure this seminar will be just as entertaining and educational.  If you have the FTU Online Annual Membership, you can attend the seminar for free.

If you registered for the seminar on Saturday, but are unable to watch the live stream, you can access the recording of the seminar and watch later on.  This is also a great way to re-watch your favorite presentations and catch any details that you originally missed.

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Stay at this Cool College-Themed Hilton Hotel in San Luis Obispo

Good morning everyone, I hope you had a great Easter and Passover.  A few days ago, Laura and I did a roadtrip around California and stayed at The Kinney San Luis Obispo, Tapestry Collection by Hilton.  The Kinney is a few blocks from downtown San Luis Obispo (SLO) and a short drive / bike ride to the campus of Cal Poly SLO.  Since the hotel is close to the university, the hotel has a college theme.  Basic rooms are called Campus Rooms and the suites are called Grad Suite, Dean Suite, and Professor Suite (see all pics and room descriptions here).  I used points to book a Campus Room and was upgraded (thanks to my Hilton Diamond Elite Status) to a Grad Suite.  I enjoyed staying at this hotel and the location was great for exploring downtown SLO and the surrounding area.  I would definitely stay here again the next time I visit SLO.  Here are some pics of my room and of the hotel.

Image source: https://www.hilton.com/en/hotels/oakerup-the-kinney-san-luis-obispo/

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The Upside of Free Night Certificates over Hotel Points

Good evening everyone.  2 years ago, I wrote Track Hotel Free Night Certificates & Credit Card Annual Fees with my Spreadsheet.  In that post, I shared my strategy for keeping track of free night certificates.  If you have several co-branded hotel credit cards (like the Chase World of Hyatt Credit Card or Chase IHG Rewards Premier Credit Card), you need to keep track of free night certificate expiration dates so you do not forget to use them before they expire or you run out of time to use them at a good property (the hotel is not going to remind you to use your free night certificate – they want you to pay the annual fee and forget to use your free night certificates).  Here are the unused free night certificates I have, as of March 2021.  I sorted the list by the expiration date of my free night certificates, so I know which free night certificates I need to focus on first.

The inspiration for this post came from a recent Miles to Memories post called Don’t Fall Into The Free Night Certificate Fuzzy Math Trap!  In that post, Mark shared all the downsides of free night certificates, like short expiration dates, some certificates only work at certain hotel categories or on certain days, etc.  I totally agree with all of those downsides, but I had the pleasure of redeeming 2 free night certificates today and wanted to share an upside I found with free night certificates.

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On My Mind: Using Chase Sapphire Reserve for Restaurants & Grocery Purchases Instead of AMEX Gold

Good evening everyone, I hope your week is going well.  A few weeks ago, I started using my Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card as my go to restaurant and grocery store card.  Both categories earn 3x Chase Ultimate Rewards Points on the CSR.  That sounds pretty good until I explain that I could use my American Express Gold Card to earn 4x American Express Membership Rewards Points on those same categories.  Why would I want to earn 3x instead of 4x?  The answer is simple: Chase Ultimate Rewards Points are much easier for me to redeem.

As you can see by these screenshots that I took today, I only have 1,235 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points, compared to 364K Citi ThankYou Points and 479K American Express Membership Rewards Points.  Let me dig a little deeper into the reasons why the points balances are so different.

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