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. You'll have to earn elite status the old fashioned way--by flying! Shutterstock.

TPG Reader Tim tweeted me to ask:
“‪@thepointsguy: Does American Airlines offer alternatives to obtain Executive Platinum status? If so, who do I call? I am currently an AAdvantage Platinum member.”

We’re more than halfway through 2014, and I know that many elite travelers (myself included) are… 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. With so many options, figuring out which credit card to use can be complicated. Shutterstock.

TPG Reader Steven tweeted me to ask:
@thepointsguy: “I value free/low-cost economy flights to London Heathrow. On which credit card should I concentrate my spending? I have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, and the Citi Executive AAdvantage World Elite MasterCard.” 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 flight to Italy isn't your only expense...tour buses, train tickets, museum entrances and more all add up. Shutterstock.

TPG reader Gisele emailed me to ask:
“I’m organizing a trip to Italy in the spring and would like to know if there’s a good credit card for less obvious travel expenses, such as Eurorail passes, museum tickets, tour buses, etc. I also would like to use Airbnb instead of a hotel. Do you have any… 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. It couldn't hurt to give the bank a call and check on your application. Shutterstock.

TPG reader Brian asked me on Facebook:
“If my online credit card application isn’t approved instantly, is there any benefit to calling the reconsideration line right away rather than waiting until I receive a yes or no decision? Would it be better to wait and then call if the decision is no?” Read More

Hotel Review: Hôtel Belles Rives, Juan-Les-Pins, Cap d’Antibes, France

September 13, 2014

TPG Creative Director Adam Daniel Weiss recently traveled to Antibes, France where he stayed at the Hôtel Belles Rives . Read on for his review on the property. After a few nights in the hustle and bustle of Cannes, I decided it was time to move to a more low key location. The traffic and crowds surrounding the Cannes Film Festival […]

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Bonus Club Carlson Points, BA Adds SFO A380 Service, & More

September 13, 2014

Here’s a round-up of the week’s points, miles and travel industry news you may have missed: Club Carlson Bonus Points For Bookings Via App: You can earn 3,000 bonus Gold Points for each stay booked through the Club Carlson mobile app. You must book AND stay via the app by November 14, 2014. The app […]

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GoGo WiFi Offering Free Texting for T-Mobile Customers

September 12, 2014

Gogo WiFi and T-Mobile have partnered up to offer T-Mobile customers free text messaging on Gogo WiFi equipped planes starting next Wednesday,  September 17th. This means T-Mobile customers will be able to send and receive text messaged aboard over 2,000 commercial aircraft including those from Delta, American, United, US Airways, Virgin America and Alaska Airlines. Here’s what […]

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Southwest Airlines Announces New Service to Costa Rica

September 12, 2014

Earlier this year I visited the Andaz Papagayo in Costa Rica and fell in love with the “pura vida” lifestyle. Traveling there, I flew into Liberia Airport, though newly minted international airline Southwest just announced that they have plans to serve the countries’ other main airport, San Jose. Southwest Airlines is planning to launch new service to San Jose, Costa Rica next […]

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Quarterly 5% Bonus Categories: Chase Freedom & Discover It

September 12, 2014

In my ongoing quest for award travel, I tend to be pretty mindful of which credit card I use for various purchases. A card that offers a good return on groceries might offer only a pittance for hotel spending, so to maximize points and miles earnings, I’m keenly aware of which cards have the best bonuses in each category. For most […]

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10 New Things to See in New York This Fall

September 12, 2014

There’s always a lot going on in New York City, but the fall is a time when the city kicks off some of its most anticipated new projects. Contributor Adee Braun gives us the run down of the latest and greatest happenings in New York City in the autumn months. After the sleepy days of summer (or […]

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Travel Organization: Tracking Award Accounts & Travel Plans

September 12, 2014

With dozens of loyalty programs, credit cards, and itineraries in play at any given time, I need a system to keep track of all my points, miles, and travel plans. Today, TPG Contributor Jason Steele offers strategies for staying organized to help you keep your travel house in order. I’m old enough to remember using a travel […]

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Is Upgrading to the American Express Platinum Worthwhile?

September 11, 2014

I recently helped my parents book an epic trip to Italy using 125,000 Delta SkyMiles each for Alitalia business class from New York (JFK)- Rome and returning from Milan back to JFK. My parents used their miles from the Barclaycard Arrival Plus to pay for some nice bed and breakfasts in Italy, and then used Hyatt and Starpoints to […]

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Thursday Giveaway: US Open Gift Pack & $200 Amex Gift Card

September 11, 2014

Every year, tens of thousands of tennis fans descend upon Flushing, Queens, New York to watch athletes compete for our nations biggest prize at the US Open. Officially touted as the World Largest Attended Annual Sporting event, the two-week long event brings together the world’s greatest players, from lauded champions like Roger Federer to up-and-comers like Belinda […]

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Amazon Payments Removing Free $1,000 Monthly Transfers

September 11, 2014

We recently wrote about Amazon Payments and the Ability to Send and Receive Money with a credit card. Currently with Amazon Payments, users can send and receive up to $1,000 each calendar month using a credit card without being charged any fees, creating the opportunity to earn credit card points for expenses that might otherwise be paid in cash or […]

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Exploring the Ancient Angkor Wat Temples in Cambodia

September 11, 2014

Situated just outside of Siem Reap, Cambodia, Angkor Archaeological Park houses several temple remains that were once the grand Khmer Empire, dating back to the 12th century. TPG Foreign Correspondent Lori Zaino guides us through exploring this UNESCO World Heritage site. Wandering around completely alone in the deserted, ancient Preah Khan Khmer temple in the […]

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No Foreign Transaction Fee on Premium Cards: The Weekly Wish

September 11, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen looks at how some of the best travel credit cards shoot themselves in the foot by charging foreign transaction fees, and explains why it’s in everyone’s best interest to do away with those international charges. I’m sure that like me, the vast majority of TPG readers travel at least occasionally outside of the country. […]

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Win Trips to Mexico, Belize, Mauritius & New York City

September 10, 2014

Here are some of this week’s fun travel contests and sweepstakes from around the Web – and here’s hoping you win a trip somewhere you’ve always wanted to go! Win a Trip to Baja California From Discover Baja  Follow these steps: Follow @Discoverbaja on Twitter Send a tweet to share how you Do Baja, including the hash tag #DoBaja (e.g., […]

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Delta Forces ExpertFlyer to Remove All Availability

September 10, 2014

When it comes to searching for flight availability and setting alerts for award seats, I usually turn to ExpertFlyer. Their flight availability tool shows you the availability of certain paid fare classes and gauges your chances at getting upgrades, same day confirmed changes, and standbys if you’re an elite frequent flyer. If delays or cancellations occur, you can also […]

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Hotel Deals This Week: SPG Hot Escapes, Marriott, Travelzoo

September 10, 2014

Looking for a last minute vacation? Each week, I’ll note some great deals, including some of the SPG Hot Escapes and other promotions that you can take advantage of to save money on your next getaway. SPG Hot Escapes Top Picks For September 10-13, 2014 SPG Hot Escapes is a promotion that offers weekly hotel discounts at […]

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Top Canada Credit Cards: Aeroplan, Marriott Rewards & More

September 10, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen reviews some of the top credit cards available to Canadian readers, including offers from Aeroplan, Alaska Airlines and Marriott Rewards, transferable programs like Amex Membership Rewards, and other flexible cash back programs. There’s no doubt that credit card sign-up bonuses are among the best ways to rack up loyalty points and […]

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Discount Redemptions: How to Find Award Chart Sweet Spots

September 10, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele looks at discounted airline awards among domestic and international carriers, and offers tips on how you can use your points and miles for award flights below the published redemption rate. Most frequent flier programs publish an award chart, while others have some sort of distance or revenue-based way of calculating how many points and […]

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Tips For Traveling to Countries Offering Visas Upon Arrival

September 9, 2014

Steve Gempeler and Peter Gulas of Allied Passport & Visa are back with their expert knowledge of all things visas and passports. Today, they will be tackling the topic of visas available on arrival and a few countries you may want to reconsider. For the sake of simplicity, travel visas can be categorized two ways, visas which need […]

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Apple Launches New iPhones, Apple Pay and Apple Watch

September 9, 2014

When it comes to travel gear, my phone is one of my first considerations. I’m on my phone a lot, even when traveling internationally, and with the amount of use I get out of it, I put a fair amount of thought into which models and features I choose. I’ve been an iPhone user for years […]

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How to Dispose of Your Expired Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

September 9, 2014

TPG Creative Director Adam Daniel Weiss‘s Chase Sapphire Preferred was expired and once the new card came it was time to dispose of the old one. Here is the process he went through: Given that the metallic Chase Sapphire Preferred card is not your standard run-of-the-mill plastic credit card, disposing of it is simply not […]

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