Hotel Review: Mandarin Oriental Paris

My most recent visit to Paris was for the city’s busy Fashion Week, which filled up points-friendly hotel options like the Westin Paris – Vendôme, the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendôme and the Prince de Galles. So I took the opportunity to try out a property that’s famous for not being a points hotel — the Mandarin Oriental Paris. There’s…

One Year of Earning & Burning with the Marriott Rewards Visa

I often discuss how helpful credit card sign-up bonuses and spending can be for earning award travel, but some readers are intimidated by the idea of opening many new accounts. So today, TPG Senior Points & Miles Correspondent Nick Ewen demonstrates how much a single card can offer you in travel rewards. Award travel can be a daunting hobby to take up, especially when it…

Red Carpet Access with Chase Sapphire Preferred Experiences

If you’re a Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholder, you may already know that you have access to exclusive perks, special events and private experiences. These Chase Sapphire Preferred Experiences are generally pretty baller, but the latest one is especially amazing: a chance to walk the red carpet and attend the 67th Emmy Awards in Los Angeles on September…

Sapphire Preferred or Amex Premier Rewards Gold for Dining?

TPG reader Thomas tweeted me about using credit cards for dining: @thepointsguy – “Since both Amex Premier Rewards Gold and Chase Sapphire Preferred now offer 2x points on dining, which card are you using for that category?” In June, American Express amped up rewards on the American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card, adding 2x points on dining to…

Which Card to Use When Buying Expensive Items Abroad

Today, TPG Editor-in-Chief Zach Honig had to make a large purchase while traveling in Australia. Here’s how he decided which credit card to use. This month, a product I’ve had my eye on for quite some time finally started shipping. It’s a wide-angle lens from Olympus that’ll make review photos — particularly those shot in tight quarters on…

Chase Sapphire Preferred to Lose First Friday Bonus

The Chase Sapphire Preferred routinely makes the list of top travel rewards cards, in part because it earns 2 points per dollar on travel and dining expenses. Furthermore, for the past few years, Chase has offered a bonus point promotion (3 points per dollar total) for dining purchases made on the first Friday of each month. This…

Not Spending Enough Could Cost You

Every travel site will tell you how to do things the right way — but as every traveler knows, sometimes things go wrong. In his bi-monthly Mistake Monday series, TPG Contributor J. Keith van Straaten invites you to learn from his mistakes — his many, many mistakes.  Collecting big sign-up bonuses on credit card offers is by far…

Carlson and AAdvantage Bonuses, Summer Travel Cards and More

Here’s a roundup of the week’s points, miles and travel industry news you may have missed: Club Carlson Launches Online Booking Bonus Club Carlson is giving members the opportunity to earn 2,000 Gold Points per night for reservations made through the Club Carlson website, mobile app or any Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group website at the more than…

IHG Unveils New Spire Elite Membership Level

IHG has announced the name of its Rewards Club’s new top membership level— and it’s called Spire Elite. The perks associated with this new level include 100% bonus points on stays, rollover nights, room upgrades and an exclusive Choice Benefit of either receiving 25,00 points or upgrading a friend or family member to Platinum status….

Credit Cards That Offer Primary Car Rental Coverage

As I’ve discussed in the past, two valuable (but often overlooked) benefits of credit cards are travel insurance and secondary auto rental insurance, even though terms are sometimes poorly disclosed and policies can be inadequate. For instance, when you’re covered by secondary car rental insurance provided by your credit card and you damage a rental car in the US, you’ll still have to file a…