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Up to $1,050 in Statement Credit with Amex Plum Card

July 29, 2014

One of the key tenets of maximizing miles and points is that you should try to get something back for every dollar you spend- whether that be miles, points or cash.  Personally, I like racking up miles and points because I know how to maximize redemptions and get more than 2% back for every dollar I […]

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Which Hilton HHonors Credit Card Is Best For You?

July 29, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen compares the benefits of all four credit cards in the Hilton HHonors family, and analyzes which ones should be in your wallet. Last week I highlighted one of the key benefits of the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card: the free night certificates that come with the initial sign-up bonus and after spending […]

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Citi ThankYou Rewards: Earning, Redeeming, and More

July 23, 2014

Citi ThankYou Rewards doesn’t get as much attention here as its competitors (Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest). However, with the recent announcement that Citi will add eight new transfer partners to the program, I thought it was time to revisit and share with readers what I think are its strengths and shortcomings. Earning […]

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What Are Points and Miles Worth? July Monthly Valuations

July 22, 2014

One of the questions I’m asked most often is “how much is a point or mile worth?” That question varies from person to person and depends on how well you can maximize a particular currency for your needs. Still, some points are worth more than others. To give readers – both old and new – some context, I’ve included […]

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Best Transfer Partners For Flights To Hawaii

July 21, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele looks at the best points and miles transfer options from Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest for travel to Hawaii. When it comes to redeeming miles for vacation, for many people, Hawaii is the dream destination. Perhaps that’s why Hawaii is also one of the hardest award tickets to […]

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Do You Earn 2x Points for Buying Miles from United?

July 20, 2014

I often purchase airline miles, especially when they’re offered at a good rate during a promotion. I never purchase them from the airline kiosk, because those rates can be up to $0.05 per mile, which is highway robbery. Usually when airlines do run specials, they’re processed through a third party called Points.com. The purchase isn’t billed […]

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Can I Transfer Amex Membership Rewards to Someone Else?

July 20, 2014

I love transferable points. I’ve said it time and time again; the best way to protect yourself from program devaluations is to built up points in one of the three major transferable points programs: American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest. TPG reader Blayne recently tweeted at me: “‪@thepointsguy Can I transfer […]

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Best Travel Credit Card Offers for July 2014

July 18, 2014

Update:  As of July 20, 2014, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card no longer offers the 7% annual points dividend. The travel credit card marketplace is an ever-shifting landscape. Offers come, offers go. Bonuses rise, bonuses fall. It pays (literally) to stay on top of the latest news to make sure you get in on the […]

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Online Travel Agency Loyalty Programs – the Basics

July 17, 2014

Lately, there have been quite a few changes in the world of online travel agencies (OTAs), including the launch of Expedia + Rewards, a new credit card from Orbitz, and the end of Chase Ultimate Rewards’ online shopping portal bonuses at a number of sites like Travelocity and Priceline. With all that in mind, I thought […]

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Maximizing Points and Miles on Summer Road Trips

July 14, 2014

Summer is in full swing, and that means Americans are on the move. According to surveys by both Orbitz and Trip Advisor, nearly 90% of Americans plan to take a summer vacation this year, hardly surprising given the Arctic conditions that had a death grip on much of the country this winter. Over 40% traveled […]

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Strategies for Minimizing the TSA Fee Hike

July 14, 2014

Today, TPG contributor Jason Steele looks at ways to mitigate the increased TSA security fees set to begin next week. As TPG reported recently, the TSA will soon be raising its fees, making airfare more expensive. The current fee is $2.50 per leg, with a cap of $5 per one-way trip or $10 per round trip. Beginning […]

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What Are the Fees to Transfer Points to Airline Partners?

July 13, 2014

My favorite kind of points are those that you can transfer to numerous different programs. The three key transferable-points programs that I bank to are Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest. I love educating fellow travelers about these programs, so I was glad when TPG reader Therese messaged me on Facebook this week […]

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What’s the Best Way to Redeem Ultimate Rewards for Travel?

July 13, 2014

This past week, TPG reader Hareesh tweeted me to ask: “@thepointsguy Is it better to redeem Ultimate Rewards directly through the Chase portal, or should you transfer points to a partner and then redeem?” When you redeem Ultimate Rewards (earned from Chase credit cards like the Sapphire Preferred, Ink Bold Ink Plus, Chase Freedom, and Sapphire) through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, your points […]

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Which Credit Card is Best for Large Business Expenditures?

July 13, 2014

TPG reader Mark sent me a question on Facebook: “I’m a business owner and charge between $100,000-$200,000 per month. I’ve been using the Citi AAdvantage & Executive Mastercard, but they don’t have high enough limits. Any suggestions?” As a business owner, it’s awesome to be able to put all of your business expenses on a points earning credit […]

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Should I Use the Delta Amex to Get Silver Elite Status?

July 13, 2014

TPG reader Joe emailed me to ask: “My new husband and I have both the Platinum Delta Amex and the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (both in my name with him as an authorized user). We currently don’t have status with any airline, but primarily fly Delta from Kansas City, and have been working towards our $50,000 spend […]

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Maximizing Hilton HHonors For Family Travel

July 11, 2014

Today, TPG contributor Jason Steele continues his series on family travel options in the most prevalent hotel brands with a look at Hilton HHonors. Previously, we looked at the family friendly aspects of two popular hotel loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest and Hyatt Gold Passport. Today, I want to examine Hilton HHonors and see how it stacks up in accommodating family travelers. How HHonors […]

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Lifetime Hotel Elite Status: a Hilton HHonors Proposal.

July 10, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen begins a new column called The Weekly Wish, where he’ll look at flaws, shortcomings, and room for improvement in the world of travel and loyalty programs. Each hotel chain has its own unique ways of attracting and maintaining profitable customers. These methods can include enhancing on-property benefits, expanding ways to earn and redeem points, and introducing […]

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Best Mileage Transfer Partners For Awards To Japan

July 7, 2014

TPG contributor Jason Steele writes today about how to maximize your award redemptions to get to one of our favorite Asian countries- Japan.  Japan is a popular tourist destination, and award travel there can be a great use of frequent flier miles. Flights to Japan from North America travel much farther than most flights to Europe, […]

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Should I Aim for Delta Diamond Status Instead of Platinum?

July 6, 2014

This week TPG reader Lev tweeted: “@thepointsguy I’m at 80K Delta MQMs so far this year. Is reaching for Delta Diamond Elite Status vs. aiming for Delta Platinum Elite Status more worthwhile than before, given the planned 2015 changes? (I live by JFK airport.)” The general trend that I’ve seen with airline elite status is […]

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How to Get the Best Value for Starwood Hotel Redemptions

June 27, 2014

TPG contributor Jason Steele returns this Friday to talk maximizing Starwood Preferred Guest promotions, just in time before the limited time 30,000 point offer on the personal and business Amex cards ends on June 30, 2104.  According to TPG’s most recent monthly valuations, Starwood points continue to be the single most valuable point or mile […]

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Maximizing JetBlue Redemptions on New Mint Business Class

June 25, 2014

Last week I released the June installment of my monthly point valuations, which included a significant boost to the value of points in JetBlue’s frequent flyer program TrueBlue. Like Southwest Airlines, JetBlue uses a fare-based redemption system, so the number of points required for an award flight corresponds to the going cash price. This means that […]

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Top Credit Card Offers With No Annual Fee

June 23, 2014

Update: The offer mentioned below for the Chase Freedom Visa has expired. View the current offer here.  So far 2014 has been a great year for new credit cards and increased sign up bonuses. Most notably, American Express came out with the first Membership Rewards earning card with no annual fee, the Amex Everyday. While […]

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Amex Las Vegas Centurion Lounge Review

June 23, 2014

On a recent trip to Las Vegas, TPG Points and Miles editor Peter Rothbart visited the American Express Centurion Lounge at McCarran Airport (LAS). Here’s what he found. For several years American Express has operated Centurion Clubs and Platinum Lounges in various airports abroad, including Mexico City, Sao Paulo, Mumbai and elsewhere. Their recent (and welcome) […]

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Best Card For Starwood Stays: SPG Amex or Amex Platinum?

June 22, 2014

Update: The offers mentioned below for the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Cards from American Express have expired. View the current offers here –personal, business. This past week, TPG reader JG tweeted me to ask: “@thepointsguy I’m going on a two-week trip and staying at Starwood hotels. Is it more worthwhile to use my SPG Amex or the Amex Platinum, which  just offered me […]

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