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This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page. Virgin Atlantic almost won my heart - but not quite (Image courtesy of Shutterstock)

The Virgin Atlantic World Elite MasterCard usually comes with sign-up bonuses of 20,000 miles after the first purchase and 25,000 miles after a spend of $2,500, with the ability to earn 5,000 miles with an authorized user and 15,000 miles every year you spend $25,000. They just launched one of… Read More

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page. Le Meridien Palm Springs pool area.

The SPG Hot Escapes is a promotion that offers weekly hotel discounts, allowing customers to stay at Starwood properties for a more economical price. Each week, I will select and feature some of the best deals and options.

How It Works
The SPG Hot Escapes go live every Wednesday at 6:00 am EST and… Read More

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page. The best surfing pic of me to date. NOT taken in Long Beach, but at surf camp in Costa Rica.

Lifestyle Editor Shayne Benowitz takes us on her journey as a surfer and to Long Beach, Long Island from Manhattan for a morning session. Want to know more about surf culture in New York? She’s rounded up some rad spots to check out.
I’ve been a wannabe surfer for approximately seven years. Read More

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page. This is the view from the rooftop where breakfast was served.

On a recent trip to Italy, TPG Contributor Jason Steele and his family spent three nights at the Comfort Inn Bolivar in Central Rome. Here’s what they found.
Our family loves to visit Italy, but it can be very difficult to find family friendly accommodations there. Italian law requires hotels to… Read More

British Airways Launches 72-Hour Hold Option

August 21, 2014

British Airways has launched a new hold option that allows potential customers to buy a little time when considering flights for purchase. For a $10 deposit fee, you can now lock in the fare on a flight and put it on hold for 72 hours. If you purchase your flight within those 72 hours, your hold deposit is refunded. This hold option is […]

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Thursday Giveaway: Deluxe Package from Genius Pack

August 21, 2014

Like most people, I do not like to check my luggage, and bringing a carry-on means that I will need to be both smart and efficient about what I pack in my bag. Between my clothes, toiletries and other travel needs, space is limited and I need to make sure that I am maximizing every […]

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New York Weekend: Escape to the North Fork

August 21, 2014

With summer turning to fall, the time is now to discover Long Island’s North Fork. Filled with wineries, farmland and fresh produce, it’s a gastronome’s dream. Contributor Adee Braun is your guide to the sweet and slowed down good life just a few hours from Manhattan. Jutting into the Atlantic Ocean, Long Island’s North Fork is the hard-working […]

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Hilton & Hyatt Elite Status Beyond Diamond: the Weekly Wish

August 21, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen continues his series The Weekly Wish, looking at flaws, shortcomings, and room for improvement in the world of travel and loyalty programs. Today’s wish: Hilton and Hyatt elite status beyond Diamond. I tend to analyze every purchase, hotel stay, and airline ticket to make sure that I maximize my return from a points & miles standpoint. […]

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National’s One Two Free Car Rental Promo Is Back

August 20, 2014

National Car Rental’s “One Two Free” promotion returns today, August 20, 2014. This year’s promo invites Emerald Club members to earn Free Rental Days after every two qualifying rentals or after earning 600 points, and will run through January 31, 2015. In order to to take advantage of this promotion, you’ll have to be enrolled in National’s Emerald […]

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Best Travel Credit Card Offers for August 2014

August 20, 2014

Sign-up bonuses for travel credit cards are always changing, and as part of your strategy for maximizing points and miles earning, it pays to stay informed so you don’t miss the best deals out there.  To help you weigh your options, I like to provide an updated monthly list of the top travel credit card offers. Below you’ll […]

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Paying College Tuition on a Credit Card: Fees vs. Rewards

August 20, 2014

I always advocate using rewards credit cards to help you fulfill your award travel aspirations. As one of the foremost expenses for many Americans, college tuition can be a great opportunity to earn points and miles, but the fees involved with using a credit card can make it a losing proposition.  Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen explains when paying college tuition with a credit card […]

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Comparing the Transferable Points Programs: Partners & More

August 20, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele looks at the strengths and weaknesses of the prominent transferable points programs to help readers strategize when deciding where to bank their points and miles. Last month, Citi’s ThankYou Rewards became the fourth major transferable points program, joining Chase Ultimate Rewards (UR), American Express Membership Rewards (MR), and the Starwood Preferred […]

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Earn Up To 50,000 Bonus Hyatt Gold Passport Points

August 19, 2014

Hyatt has launched a new targeted promotion, which will run from September 1 through November 30, 2014, where some Gold Passport members will have the opportunity to earn up to 50,000 bonus points for eligible nights spent at all Hyatt properties worldwide. Here’s a look at the bonus structure, based on eligible nights spent at Hyatt properties: Stay […]

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American Express Removes Secure Message Center

August 19, 2014

A great feature that used to be offered by both American Express and Chase was the Secure Messaging option, which enabled you to log into your account for either credit card issuer and and easily send either company a message without having to actually call them. This was especially useful if you signed up for a credit card offer and then […]

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Top 0% APR Credit Cards That Earn Points & Miles

August 19, 2014

Generally when I write about credit cards, it’s to tell readers about the sign-up bonuses and other benefits they offer that can help enable and enrich your travels. But there are other important factors to consider when getting a new card – most critically, the impact that opening an account has on your credit score, and how applying for and using a card fits […]

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Maximizing Stopovers and Open Jaws on Award Tickets

August 19, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen offers insights into two lucrative routing strategies that will help you get farther on your frequent flyer miles: the stopover, and the open jaw. Everyone loves a free flight (well, maybe not airlines). My guess is that if you’re reading this post, then like I do, you try to squeeze every bit […]

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8 Hottest Las Vegas Pool Parties to Hit Before Summer’s Over

August 18, 2014

Sin City is on fire through the end of summer and the best way to cool down is at one of its legendary pool parties. Assistant Editor Melanie Wynne scopes out the best parties and hottest headliners over Labor Day Weekend and beyond. It’s been a big year for Vegas for those who love points with several new […]

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What Are Points and Miles Worth? August Monthly Valuations

August 18, 2014

One of the questions I’m asked most often is “how much is a point or mile worth?” That question varies from person to person and depends on how well you can maximize a particular currency for your needs. Still, some points are worth more than others. To give readers – both old and new – some context, I’ve included […]

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Computer, Mobile, & Internet Security Basics for Travelers

August 18, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele explains why computer and mobile security are important considerations for all travelers, and how you can help prevent yourself from getting hacked. Before I became a writer, I spent many years working as a computer systems administrator and technical support analyst at Boeing, IBM, and at state and federal government offices. […]

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Will I Earn Points If I Pay My Credit Card Bill Early?

August 17, 2014

TPG reader Sean emailed me with a question this week: “My research suggests that I can make charges and pay them off multiple times during the billing cycle. If I do that, will I earn points based on the total I spent in the month, or are points awarded based on my balance when my statement closes?” Paying your credit card […]

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SPG Amex or Sapphire Preferred for Rental Cars?

August 17, 2014

We’ve seen some significant changes to the Chase Sapphire Preferred card’s benefits in the last few weeks, prompting me to answer a question from TPG Reader Victor: “@thepointsguy Which credit card is better for rental cars – Starwood Preferred American Express or Chase Sapphire Preferred?” Quite frankly, I admit that I also chose this question […]

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Should I Get the US Airways Card Before the Merger?

August 17, 2014

The US Airways and American Airlines merger is not one of the fastest airline mergers that we’ve seen; we still don’t exactly know when the frequent flyer programs are going to merge, but we’ve been told sometime in 2015. That has an impact on the co-branded credit cards, like the Barclaycard US Airways MasterCard. TPG […]

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Should I Downgrade My Amex Platinum to the Everyday Card?

August 17, 2014

If you use Delta lounges or Priority Pass Select, or if you live or fly out of one of the cities has has a Centurion Lounge (New York, Dallas, Las Vegas or later this year, Miami and San Francisco), it makes the Amex Platinum card much more attractive. The $200 a year airline credit automatically […]

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Hotel Review: Pristine Lotus Spa Resort in Inle Lake, Myanmar

August 16, 2014

On his recent round-the-world trip, TPG Special Contributor Eric Rosen visited Myanmar for a week. He wrote about his tips for visiting Myanmar, his experiences in the country’s largest city, Yangon, how to book flights within Myanmar, his experience booking and staying at the Hotel at Tharabar Gate in Bagan, and what he did in […]

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