Articles by Nick Ewen

Overview of Hotel Resort Fees and How to Avoid Them

October 21, 2014

As an award travel enthusiast, I’ll be the first to admit that airlines and hotels don’t always make it easy. Changing programs, inconsistent policies, and unexpected fees all add to the challenge of using your points and miles effectively. But for every problem that pops up, you can count on award travelers to find several solutions. […]

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Rental Car Credit Cards: The Weekly Wish

October 16, 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: that savvy card issuers would release co-branded credit cards for rental car companies. The bulk of coverage here at TPG is devoted to airline and hotel loyalty programs. We want […]

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Top UK Credit Cards: British Airways, Hilton, and More

October 15, 2014

If you’re a U.S.-based reader of The Points Guy, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that you’ve applied for at least one credit card offer with a large sign-up bonus. Unfortunately, most (if not all) of these offers are unavailable to readers outside the country. To help our readers elsewhere make the most of credit card […]

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Maximizing Points, Miles, and Dollars at the Spa

October 14, 2014

From the Away Spa at the W Vieques in Puerto Rico to the Chuan Spa at the Langham Hotel in Chicago, some of my most relaxing travel experiences have come at the hands of hotels and resorts that offer spa services. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen offers tips for how to make spa visits less expensive and […]

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Amex Membership Rewards Transfer Bonuses: The Weekly Wish

October 9, 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: consistent transfer bonuses from Amex Membership Rewards to airline and hotel travel partners. Last Thursday, my Weekly Wish focused on how the Starwood Preferred Guest program could improve by offering […]

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Which Virgin America Visa Signature Card is Best for You?

October 8, 2014

I’m a fan of over-the-top credit card sign-up bonuses that offer a bonanza of miles all at once, but there are plenty of cards with less substantial bonuses that are worth having for their other benefits. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen shows us the ins and outs of two such cards from Virgin America, and offers some guidelines for deciding […]

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Hotel Review: Andaz Wall Street, New York – Andaz Suite

October 7, 2014

TPG Contributor Nick Ewen recently stayed at the Andaz Wall Street with his wife for a weekend getaway. Here’s his review of the luxurious Hyatt brand’s Wall Street outpost. Stay tuned for more New York hotel reviews from the TPG team’s recent travels. I have a confession to make: as a native New Yorker, I’ve gone […]

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Choosing a Rewards Credit Card: 5 Questions Before You Apply

October 7, 2014

In the time I’ve spent mastering the art of award travel, I’ve learned that there are many ways to get from A to B, but they’re far from equal. One airline or hotel might suit you where another won’t, and the same goes for rewards credit cards. Having a card that meets your particular needs is an important step toward traveling the […]

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Ritz-Carlton Rewards Card: Should it be in Your Wallet?

October 2, 2014

Like its hotels, Ritz-Carlton’s co-branded credit card comes at a premium, but the travel and elite benefits offered by the Ritz-Carlton Rewards card can make it well worthwhile. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen explains how. Many of the most prominent hotel brands have their own “luxury” brands embedded within their portfolios, such as St. Regis or Park Hyatt. […]

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Instant Starwood Points Transfers: The Weekly Wish

October 2, 2014

In the world of award travel, there’s little more frustrating than hunting down the perfect itinerary and locking in on scarce award availability only to have your plans undone by a delay in transferring points from one program to another. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen calls out one notoriously slow transferable points program, and explains why […]

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Train or Plane? U.S. Routes Where Amtrak Beats Flying

September 30, 2014

Unlike European trains, which are known for comfort and punctuality, Amtrak doesn’t have the same allure as air travel. Still, there are some domestic routes where the train competes (or even comes out ahead) in terms of time and cost. TPG Contributor Nick Ewen took a deeper look at these routes to see when the train is the better option. […]

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Truly Pet-Friendly Hotels: The Weekly Wish

September 25, 2014

Many of you know that I’m the proud parent of a sweet, styling, jet-setting little Blue French Bulldog named Miles. He travels with me whenever it’s feasible, and I love having him along. TPG Contributor Nick Ewen is also a dog owner, and like me, he’s encountered some inhospitable policies from hotels that advertise themselves as […]

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Barclaycard Arrival Plus or No-Fee Version: Which Card Wins?

September 24, 2014

There are a number of factors that go into choosing a travel rewards card. Since credit cards have a wide range of unique benefits, comparisons are often apples to oranges. However, some cards are similar enough that deciding between them boils down to just a few key points. Today, TPG Contributor Nick Ewen compares the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite […]

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Credit Card Benefits to Maximize Before 2015

September 23, 2014

As I’ve often said, one of the great tragedies for travelers is letting loyalty points and frequent flyer miles expire, and I think the same goes for unused credit card benefits. Today, TPG Contributor Nick Ewen will guide us through some of the best offers and benefits whose days are numbered, to help you make […]

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Transferable Points from Bank of America: The Weekly Wish

September 18, 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: a transferable points program from Bank of America. 2014 has seen its fair share of improvements on the loyalty front. Sure, there have been devaluations (ahem, Delta and United, ahem), […]

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Is the Amtrak Guest Rewards MasterCard Worthwhile?

September 17, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen takes an in-depth look at the Amtrak Guest Rewards MasterCard, including its earning potential, redemption options, and unique features, to see whether it deserves a place in the pantheon of award travel credit cards. Most of the content at TPG involves tips for maximizing free travel with award flights and hotel rooms. However, there […]

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Using Merchant Category Codes to Maximize Bonuses

September 16, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen explains merchant category codes, and how understanding them can help you get the most out of category bonuses offered by your credit cards. TPG often preaches the importance of maximizing the points and miles you earn not only in your travels, but also from your day to day spending. If, for example, you spend […]

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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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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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Maximizing Sports Purchases: Tickets, Apparel, TV, and More

September 9, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen looks at ways to maximize purchases for sports fans. Fall is my favorite time of year, not just for the approaching cooler weather and the holidays it ushers in, but also because fall (in my humble opinion) is the absolute best time to be a sports fan. The college football season is less than two […]

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Flexible Airline Travel Vouchers – the Weekly Wish

September 4, 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: more flexible airline travel vouchers. I’m sure many of you have experience with airline travel vouchers. Sometimes they appear as gift cards, while others may be earned via status (like Delta’s […]

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Citi ThankYou Premier: Should This Be Your Next Card?

September 3, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen takes an in-depth look at the Citi ThankYou Premier, including its earning potential, redemption options, and how it stacks up against its main competitor, the Chase Sapphire Preferred. A few months ago, Citi announced changes to the ThankYou Rewards program, adding 8 airline transfer partners to go along with their existing hotel partner, […]

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Maximizing Computer Purchases: Points, Bonuses, & More

September 2, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen offers suggestions for how to get the most out return from a new computer purchase, including how to find the best price, maximize rewards, and protect your investment.  This week, students and teachers across their country are begrudgingly setting their alarms, sharpening pencils, and preparing for a new school year. With more and more […]

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List Calories on Airline & Airport Menus: the Weekly Wish

August 28, 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: include calorie counts in airline and airport menus. Eating healthy on the road isn’t easy. Sometimes your only option is the drive-thru of a local fast food joint in between meetings, […]

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