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Earlier this year, Barclaycard launched an online travel community where their Arrival cardholders can earn miles for sharing their stories, photos and advice with other users, and at the time, they said that the community would be open to non-cardholders as well, who could earn points redeemable for travel and other expenses, but details at the time were sketchy. Now they’ve gotten a bit clearer.
The latest development in the travel community came Wednesday, with a new reward feature where non-cardmembers can earn miles that they can then redeem for Amazon.com e-certificates. Redemptions start at 2,500 miles for a $5 e-certificate. That’s just 0.2 cents a mile – definitely nothing to write home about, but hey, if you like sharing your travel stories online, then you might as well get something for it.
The latest announcement follows on the heels of last year’s launch of Barclaycard’s Arrival credit card in the US market last year, which allow cardholders to redeem their points at a fixed rate of 1 cent apiece for travel expenses such as airline tickets, hotel nights and car rentals and receive a 10% mileage refund on redemptions. Those members with the Arrival can easily link their Travel Community account to their credit card account, allowing the miles they earn on the community to transfer directly over to their account. And since the redemption rate on travel purchases – which include everything from airline tickets (including taxes and fees) to train tickets to car rentals and more – is literally 5X better than these Amazon redemptions.
If you have a Barclaycard Arrival credit card, then you redeem the points you earn through that, but if not, a $5 Amazon e-certificate will be sent to you as soon as you reach the 2,500 mile threshold. Just creating your initial travel profile earns you 500 miles, then you get more for posting a story with a photo or giving a fellow writer’s post the thumbs up.
Here is the full breakdown for the earning opportunities:
- Members will earn 200 miles for each travel story that is posted on the site
- Every time the story that is authored by a member is kudoed by another member, the member will receive 10 miles
- Completing a profile will earn each member 500 miles; a profile is considered complete when the following information is added: city and state, at least one travel interest is selected, at least one travel companion is selected, at least 1 travel style is selected, and at least 5 cities are added to the “My travels” map
- Barclaycard, at its sole discretion, may also provide members miles for other activities
- Barclaycard, at its sole discretion, can change or remove these miles values and activities at any time, without warning
- Barclaycard, at its sole discretion, reserves the right to pull down travel stories that do not adhere to the community guidelines or are not good faith efforts to provide quality content for Users of the Site.
While it will take time to rack up some serious miles and there is very little you can buy on Amazon.com for $5 nowadays, this is still a little incentive for community members to post more content and interact with their online colleagues, and it once again just goes to show what an emphasis credit card issuers have placed on social networking and media.
There has been a steady increase in the amount of bloggers and stories on the community since it launched over the summer, with some interesting guides such as Surfing Lessons In Waikiki, Natural HOT Mineral Springs In Costa Rica, and Swiss Hot Chocolate. Naturally, many of the members seem to be students or young professionals who no doubt shop on Amazon a lot, whether for electronics, gifts or books, and while it will take them some time to earn enough to buy that new iPad or laptop – they can quickly rack up enough points for a travel guide for their next adventure.
Click here to join the community and start earning miles. Just note, the site is closely monitored so that only acceptable content is posted, so be sure to follow the writing guidelines and terms and conditions.
For more information on Barclaycard and the Arrival, check out these previous posts: