Articles by Nick Ewen

How and When to File a DOT Complaint

November 25, 2014

Getting a plane full of people and stuff from one place to another is no easy task, and mistakes are inevitable. The important consideration for travelers is how airlines respond, and what to do when that response is inadequate. Today, TPG Contributor Nick Ewen discusses one tool every frequent flyer should know how to use, the DOT complaint. Air travel […]

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Tips for Delta MQD and United PQD Requirements in 2014

November 20, 2014

With the deadline for elite status qualification looming, this week TPG Contributor Nick Ewen discusses strategies to help you earn or maintain your status into the new year. 2015 is rapidly approaching, which means we’re also in the home stretch for elite status qualification. Once the calendar flips, the balances for all of your elite qualifying miles and segments (as well as […]

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Tips to Qualify for Delta and United Elite Status in 2014

November 19, 2014

With the deadline for elite status qualification looming, this week TPG Contributor Nick Ewen discusses strategies to help you earn or maintain your status into the new year. 2015 is rapidly approaching, which means we’re also in the home stretch for elite status qualification. Once the calendar flips, the balances for all of your elite qualifying miles and segments (as well as […]

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Tips to Qualify for American and US Air Elite Status in 2014

November 18, 2014

I’m often asked how much I value elite status; while I no longer prize certain benefits (like lounge access) as much as I used to, in the long run elite status makes my travel smoother and more enjoyable, sometimes in unexpected ways. With the deadline for elite status qualification looming, this week TPG Contributor Nick Ewen discusses strategies to help […]

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Hotel Credit Cards with No Annual Fee: Hilton, Choice & More

November 14, 2014

A crucial step in maximizing your points and miles is figuring out how much value you’re getting out of any given transaction. Annual fees are a direct hit to the value you can get out of a credit card, making cards with no annual fees attractive even though they typically offer more modest benefits. Today, TPG Contributor Nick Ewen analyzes several […]

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Elite Status Qualification with PQD/MQD: The Weekly Wish

November 13, 2014

In theory, elite status exists to reward an airline’s most loyal and profitable customers. Today, TPG Contributor Nick Ewen explains how that isn’t always the case, and offers his suggestions for how airlines can improve elite status requirements while improving their bottom line. Last year, the frequent flyer community was hit with the news that Delta and United were […]

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Top 10 Airport Lounges in the U.S. & How to Gain Access

November 12, 2014

Airline travel isn’t exactly the most glamorous way to get from Point A to Point B, but there are aspects of it that can help you feel like a true high roller. One of my personal favorites is lounge access. Having an oasis from the chaos of the terminal or the infestation of gate lice can […]

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Free Hotel WiFi – How to Get Online While You’re on Property

November 11, 2014

Staying connected is crucial for me when I travel, and unless I’m really going off the grid, I prefer hotels that have high-speed internet access, especially when getting online won’t add a huge amount to my final bill. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen looks at which hotel brands offer free WiFi as a standard or elite […]

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Hotel Review: St. Regis Bal Harbour – Grand Luxe Oceanfront Suite

November 8, 2014

TPG contributor Nick Ewen recently stayed at the luxurious St. Regis Bal Harbour in Miami. Here’s his review of the property. The rain was coming down in buckets as my wife and I pulled up to the St. Regis Bal Harbour, the first stop on our “stay-cation babymoon” in South Florida. Little did I know that […]

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Hotel Choice Benefits for Top Tier Elites: The Weekly Wish

November 6, 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: offer choice benefits to top tier hotel elites. The first class I ever attended as a college freshman was Economics, and on the board, the professor wrote, “There’s no […]

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The Fidelity Amex Card: Is 2% Cash Back Good Enough?

November 5, 2014

Cash-back rewards are often passed over by award travel enthusiasts for more glamorous airline and hotel points, but they can play an important role in your overall earning strategy. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen looks at one of the stronger cash-back credit card options, and discusses whether it should have a place in your wallet. When it comes to […]

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What to Do When a Hotel Room Upgrade Is Really a Downgrade

November 4, 2014

Hotel upgrades are usually great when you get them, but what should you do if your hotel upgrade actually equates to a downgrade? Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen shares a recent experience he had at a Starwood property in Florida, and offers some tips in case you find yourself in similar circumstances. Upgrades can be like a drug […]

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JetBlue Mosaic Improvements: The Weekly Wish

October 30, 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: step up the benefits in JetBlue Mosaic to make it more useful to frequent flyers. I love elite status and all the perks that come with it. Whether I’m […]

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Which Citi ThankYou Rewards Card Offers the Most Value?

October 29, 2014

Citi has made impressive strides this year with the addition of nine new airline transfer partners, and while ThankYou Rewards finished last in our transferable points programs showdown earlier this week, there’s still a lot of value to be found there. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen explores credit card options for earning Citi ThankYou points, and explains the differences between […]

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Delta SkyMiles Program Changes: Winners and Losers

October 28, 2014

When loyalty programs change (as they invariably do), it’s easy to judge those changes based on how they impact your own travel. But looking at the bigger picture can help you assess whether a program is moving in the right or wrong direction overall. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen looks at recent changes to the Delta SkyMiles program, […]

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Should the JetBlue Amex Card Earn a Spot in Your Wallet?

October 23, 2014

I’ve made no secret of my disappointment over recent devaluations by legacy carriers. As I’ve considered which airline deserves the bulk of my business, I’ve been happy to try out new service, like my upcoming flight on JetBlue’s new Mint Business Class to Los Angeles. Along with the actual flying, I’ve been contemplating which co-branded airline cards I plan […]

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Late Checkout for Hilton HHonors Diamond: the Weekly Wish

October 23, 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: guaranteed late checkout for Hilton HHonors Diamond elites. I’m sure many of you have been in a position where your travel plans don’t mesh well with an 11 am […]

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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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