November 24th, 2011

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2011 has been a pretty wild year when it comes to points and travel. We’ve seen lots of positive and negative changes: from Continental leaving Membership Rewards to British Airways “revitalising” their frequent flyer program. Here are some of the miles and points related things that I’ve been thankful for this year:

1) The increase in credit card sign up bonuses. Most notably the British Airways 100,000 mile promo, which allowed me to get a roundtrip business class ticket from NYC to Bali with a stopover in Hong Kong.
2) Starwood’s decision to count award stays towards elite status
3) The Chase Ultimate Rewards program blossoming into a formidable competitor to Amex Membership Rewards
4) The demise of foreign transaction fees on many credit cards (including Ink Bold, which was just announced)
5) The rise of category bonuses on credit cards – specifically 2 points per dollar on all travel and dining spend with the Chase Sapphire Preferred card
6) Mistake fares, like the $150 roundtrip Delta fares that allowed me to go to Stockholm and Copenhagen three times in a one month span
7) US Airways 100% buy miles promos that will allow me to fly around the world in business class for relatively cheap prices
8 ) Amex bump bonuses, which were sweet while they lasted! Those were some of the easiest points I ever earned – huge paydays just for calling up and asking.
9) The places that I’ve been able to go because of my miles and points. Whether it’s the Costa Brava, Mauritius, or California with my Grandmother, I wouldn’t have been able to travel as much (and not in as much comfort) without my points and miles.
10) Global Entry– it’s saved me so much time and frustration already. I can’t imagine international travel without it.
11) Being able to quit my day job and become a full-time blogger!
12) Going on my first Mega Do and having the Oneworld Mega Do lined up for January
13) Amex transfer bonuses- the multiple Delta 50-67% promos and the British Airways 50% helped pad my accounts
14) Speaking at my first points/miles conference and being asked by my friend and follow blogger, Rick the Frugal Travel Guy, to help plan next year’s event
15) Savvy TPG readers! I love waking up every day to new emails – whether success stories, deal tips or even constructive criticism. I read every single email (and try to respond to as many as possible). Keep it up!

What are you thankful for this year when it comes to travel, miles and points?

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
16.49% - 23.49% Variable
Annual Fee
Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
Balance Transfer Fee
5.00%
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.