New York Times Travel Show Resource: Maximizing Credit Cards For Free Travel

by on January 20, 2013 · 10 comments

in Credit Cards, Points Guy Pointers

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Thanks to everyone who came out to the New York Times Travel Show yesterday for my first presentation: Beating the System: Travel Pointers for a First Class Lifestyle on a Budget.

I hope to see many of you out there for my second talk today on Maximizing Credit Cards for Free Travel. I’m going to cover a lot, fast, so in case you miss anything during the talk or want to delve further into any of these topics, and for those of who couldn’t make it, you should find this to be a useful synopsis of the information I covered and a source of material to brush up on your points and miles strategy as well.


Understanding How Your Credit Score Works – A breakdown of the factors FICO uses to calculate your score.

Disputing Negative Information on Credit Reports – You have to have your credit in order before you can get into the travel credit card game.

What is the Best Way To Apply For Multiple Credit Card Promotions?

My Credit Confessions and 8 Tips to Improve Your Credit Score

The Fastest, Cheapest Ways to Meet Minimum Spend Requirements

Which Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses Can You Get Multiple Times?

Avoiding Annual Fees and Keeping Points

Canceling Credit Cards After Redeeming Awards


I wrote a series of posts ranking the current credit card offers from each of the major issuers to help readers choose the best product for them.

First, check out my Top Deals page, where I post the latest top credit card sign-up bonuses and deals.

Then here are my posts ranking the top travel credit cards from the major issuers, as well as comparisons between competing cards.

My Ranking of the Top American Express Travel Credit Cards

My Ranking of the Top 12 Chase Travel Credit Card Offers

My Ranking of the Top Citi Travel Credit Card Offers

My Ranking of the Top US Bank Travel Credit Card Offers

Ranking the Top Business Credit Cards

Ranking the Top Fixed-Value Credit Cards

Transferable Points – I gave another presentation in October outlining the transferable points programs of American Express, Chase and Starwood and how to pull the most value out of your points and miles with a savvy transfer strategy


The Best Business Credit Cards for Miles, Points and Cashback

Do You Have to Have a Business to Get a Business Credit Card?

Meeting Business Credit Card Spend Requirements


Top 10 Airline Credit Card Perks and Mileage Benefits

Top 10 Best Credit Card Airline Companion Tickets Deals

Top 10 Hotel Credit Card Perks

Top 10 Business Credit Cards for Earning Points and Miles

Top 10 No Annual Fee Credit Cards for Travelers

Choosing the Best Site and Credit Card for Purchasing Airfare

The Best Ways to Earn Points and Miles On Dining With Credit Cards

Maximizing Travel Credit Cards Calendar Year Spending Threshold Bonuses

Bonus Category Overlap: When To Use Sapphire Preferred Vs. Freedom Vs. Premier Rewards Gold?

Maximizing Category Spend Bonuses on Credit Card Spend

Maximizing Spending on Gas and Gift Cards


I wrote an entire series on Maximizing American Express Membership Rewards. The posts include:

Post 1: Understanding the Card Offering

Post 2: Understanding Membership Rewards

Post 3: Understanding Transfer Bonuses

Post 4: Platinum Card Review

Post 5: SkyTeam Transfer Partners

Post 6: Oneworld Transfer Partners

Post 7: Star Alliance Transfer Partners

Post 8:Understanding Emergency Travel Assistance and Travel Accident Insurance

Post 9: Purchase and Return Protection and Extended Warranty

Post 10: Car Rental Benefits

Post 11: Gold and Premier Rewards Gold Card Comparison

Is the Platinum Card Worth The $450 Annual Fee


Why I Love Chase Ultimate Rewards

Maximizing Chase Ultimate Rewards: My Ink, Sapphire Preferred and Freedom Gameplan

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Annual 7% Points Dividend

Chase Sapphire Preferred Details on 2x Points Per Dollar on Travel

Detailed Look at the Ink Bold and Ink Plus Cards

Can I Get the Ink Bold and Ink Plus?

Maximizing Chase Ink Bold Spending Bonuses at Office Supply Stores

Huge Earning Potential with Chase Freedom, Sapphire Preferred and Checking Combination

How Many Chase Cards Can One Person Have?

My Experience Debunking Chase Credit Card Application Myths


Maximizing Starwood Cash & Points Awards

Maximizing Starwood Airline Transfers

Maximizing Starwood Points For Room and Suite Upgrades


Top 10 Ways to Maximize Miles and Points with Prepaid, Reloadable and Gift Cards

My Series on the American Express Bluebird Card – a powerful new points-earning tool, including posts such as:

New American Express Bluebird Card –Huge Potential Points Earning

Maximizing American Express Bluebird to Earn Miles and Points: FAQ

Maximizing Miles and Points with Green Dot & Paypal

Maximizing Prepaid and Reload Cards for Miles and Points

Maximizing Reload Cards for Points and Miles: Vanilla vs. Green Dot vs. PayPal vs. REloadit

Maximizing Prepaid and Reloadable Cards for Points and Miles: Reloadable Strengths and Weaknesses

Maximizing Prepaid / Reloadable and Reload Cards For Points And Miles – Choosing Which Credit Card To Use

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.

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  • Jay04150

    Did you mention how you told your readers that chase UR points were freely transferable, and then after they had their account shut down you were oddly silent, and did nothing to help their cause?

  • thepointsguy

    I did let them know a few people had their accounts shut down. Sorry that happened, but not sure what you’d want me to do to fix it since I don’t work for chase and I don’t know the details of your situation.

  • AKold
  • Brabbit

    A partnership doesn’t mean he works for Chase. I think it’s pretty obvious that his role was of a promotional/consulting nature. It would be erroneous to infer he had access to personal accounts.

  • AKold

    Did he not have videos on Chase’s Facebook site that had tips that eventually led to the shut down of some people’s accounts?

  • Sharon308

    For SPG.. Do u mean that if we transfer to Alaska air and then use that to book Cathay Pacific to Asia ( <– that's the best value?) (My final destination is Taiwan)

  • thepointsguy

    No.. Link? No one I know has bad their account shut down for transferring UR points. I’ve read one or two Internet reports but I can’t confirm whether there wasn’t other shady stuff going on. I’ve personally transferred my points (and those of many friends and family members) and had no issues whatsoever.

    However I did write to earn people about the limited reports of account shutdowns, so I’m not sure what exactly you’re trolling for here

  • Jon

    I am currently using a Charles Schwab debit card as my primary card for purchases. I spend roughly $500 a month on my card give or take, which is all on restaurants and grocery stores, and I am looking into getting a credit card. I can’t decide between a cash back (Fidelity, Freedom, Amex Blue Cash, etc) or points/miles card (sapphire preferred, ink, etc). What recommendations do you have regarding a good card or cards for my situation based on how much I spend a month and where I make my purchases and that I don’t have a card.

  • AKold

    I’m not “trolling,” I’m simply asking you questions. But I guess whenever someone disagrees with you, you just dub it “trolling” so you can be done with it?

    Did you or did you not advertise the ability to transfer UR points outside of the spousal rule, contrary to the T&C? (Yes)

    Did people get their accounts shut down for doing so? (Yes – as per your FT link and via )

    Have you taken at least a modicum of responsibility for pushing this transfer feature of UR when it was clearly against the T&C (something you should know about)? The rules were always there and as the blogger who seems to have the biggest ties with Chase, you should have known this. That’s where I’d like an answer.

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