Points Guy Pointers

Cutting Connection Times in Australia With SmartGate

February 12, 2014

The last thing you want after a 15-hour flight across the Pacific is to have to sit around in another airport all day and wait for a connecting flight. Unfortunately, that can often be the case in a destination like Australia where there are only a certain number of flights to various destinations throughout the […]

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SkyMiles (Surprisingly) To The Rescue After Travel Plans Go Awry

February 11, 2014

I always say that frequent flyer miles are the best travel insurance policy you can have – and it proved true once again as TPG Managing Editor Eric Rosen experienced this weekend when his trip to Australia very nearly got derailed. Here’s what happened, and here’s how we handled it. Note: This is not a […]

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Turkey Will No Longer Issue Visas on Arrival After April 10, 2014

February 5, 2014

Our friends over at Allied Passport let us know about a change coming to Turkey’s visa up on arrival process. Right now you can simply fly to Turkey, deplane and queue up at the visa window on the way to customs and immigration and buy a visa upon arrival for $20 in cash for a […]

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Last-Minute Ideas For Getting To The 2014 Super Bowl

January 23, 2014

Superbowl Sunday is coming right up on February 2 and though it’s bound to be a busy weekend in New Jersey where the game is being held, there are still opportunities to get there using points and miles – especially if you’re a Broncos or Seahawks fan and want to see your hometown team play. […]

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Winter Storm Delays and Cancellations – What To Do If Weather Disrupts Your Travel Plans

January 21, 2014

The Midwest and Great Lakes are covered in snow, the East Coast is hunkering down before a huge storm, the federal government shut down in anticipation of bad weather and over 2,000 flights are already canceled with 3,000 more delayed – it’s going to be a tough day for travelers across much of the US. […]

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Top 10 Tips To Deal With Winter Flights Delays and Cancellations

January 7, 2014

With the nefarious-sounding “arctic vortex” swirling catastrophe upon the country and airline delays and cancellations mounting into the tens of thousands, I thought today would be a good time for a primer on tactics you can use to avoid waiting hours (or days) in an airport or on hold and spending hundreds of dollars in […]

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What To Do If Winter Storms Disrupt Travel For You

January 2, 2014

With a massive snowstorm moving across the Great Lakes and a newly forming Noreaster about to slam the East Coast – along with 100 million people and 22 states in its path – airlines and dozens of airports are going to be affected by huge blizzards just as folks prepare to travel home after the […]

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My Points and Miles Predictions For 2014

January 1, 2014

Happy 2014 everyone! Let me just start by saying that I hope this is a happy, healthy, points-filled year of wonderful travel, experiences and joy for us all. Now on to practical matters. As the elite status odometer resets with airlines and hotels, spending threshold counts go back to zero on credit cards, and major […]

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How a Mechanical Flight Cancellation Almost Delayed My Vacation and 10 Re-Booking Tips

December 30, 2013

Flight delays and cancellations are a reality of air travel. Whether it is due to weather, air traffic control or a mechanical issue, they can royally mess up your travel plans and put a damper on any vacation. However, when airlines cancel due to mechanical reasons, they are much more likely to help you re-book […]

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Using Miles for a Last Minute Family Emergency

December 9, 2013

Although I normally dedicate space on the site to talking about how to maximize miles by earning them and redeeming for high-value trips and premium travel, one of the ways miles are most valuable is for last-minute emergencies when airfares can skyrocket and be a huge blow to your wallet and your morale when you’re […]

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Have Any Tips For Avoiding Jet Lag?

December 8, 2013

TPG reader Jason tweeted me with a question about a problem that plagues many long-distance travelers – jet lag: “@thepointsguy With your constant int’l trips and multiple time zone changes, how do you reduce the effects of jet lag?” If you’ve never experienced it before, jet lag can be brutal because it’s not just about […]

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Allied Visa & Passport Now Offering A Free Visa Service To China, Kenya And Tanzania, Now Through January 10, 2014

December 4, 2013

Keeping with the season of giving, Allied Passport & Visa are waiving their fees on visas to China, Tanzania and Kenya now through January 10, 2014 – just in time to plan your big trips in the new year. Normally TPG readers receive a $5 discount from Allied on any order but pay Allied’s service […]

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What You Can Do If Weather Disrupts Your Thanksgiving Travel Plans

November 27, 2013

With a massive Noreaster bearing down on the East Coast, Atlanta being slammed with storms, dozens of other airports affected during the busiest travel weekend of the year and 43 million Americans expected to fly, I know that many folks’ travel plans are being affected over Thanksgiving so I wanted to put together a few […]

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Do You Need A Valid Passport At The Time Of An Award Booking Or Just By The Travel Day?

November 3, 2013

TPG reader Jake asked: “Do you need a valid passport at the time of an award booking or just at the travel day?” To put it simply, you don’t need a passport at the time of an award booking, however you do need it by the time you travel and I would strongly advise that […]

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What To Do If The Tragic LAX Shootings Disrupt Your Travel Plans

November 1, 2013

If you’re anywhere near a TV, radio or computer, you’ll have seen that the major news story of the day was that a gunman attached Terminal 3 at LAX and killed a TSA agent and wounded seven others before being shot himself (details are still coming in, so the numbers may change as the story […]

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Using to Combine Miles and Points: A Good Deal?

October 28, 2013

Update: The offer mentioned below for the Platinum Card from American Express has expired. View the current offer here. Update: The offers mentioned below for the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Cards from American Express has expired. View the current offers here – personal, business. is a points exchange and clearing house that allows members to trade one kind of […]

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T-Mobile Introduces Unlimited Global Roaming – Data and Text and Flat Rate International Calling

October 11, 2013

One of the biggest worries about international travel these days is how to stay in touch and get the data and calling features you need on your Smartphone without racking up hundreds or even thousands of dollars extra on your monthly phone bill. It is possible with some carriers to unlock your phone and get […]

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How To Get A Second Passport

September 24, 2013

If you’re like me and constantly traveling, one of the issues you might run into is that your passport gets filled up pretty quickly – especially if you travel to countries that require visas that take up an entire page. Although it will be valid for a few more years, my passport is pretty much […]

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Saving Money By Using Miles in an Emergency: A Rundown of Last Minute Airline Award Booking Fees

September 11, 2013

I flew to South Africa last week to visit some friends on a quick trip that I had decided to go on last-minute when they invited me and I was able to find a roundtrip economy ticket on KLM from New York to Cape Town via Amsterdam for $1,540. I was having a fantastic time […]

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I Survived and Thrived in Coach!

September 5, 2013

Well, after 18 hours of flight time and a 3-hour layover, I finally made it from New York to Cape Town on Wednesday, and I had an overall solid experience flying in KLM Economy Comfort. For those of you expecting a whiny, complaining post, you may want to skip this one When I originally posted […]

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How Am I Going To Survive 21 Hours In Coach?

September 3, 2013

Some people call me a diva because I rarely fly anything but first or business class – but that’s one of the most beautiful perks about what I do. I invest my time, money and expertise racking up the points, miles and elite status to travel where I want, the way I want. Keep in […]

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How Do I Follow The Site And How Do I Contact The Points Guy With Questions?

August 18, 2013

Multiple TPG readers have asked: “How do I get in touch with the Points Guy to ask questions about miles and points, and how do I follow the site via e-mail or a feed?” I have been asked countless times by readers how to follow the site via e-mail or a feed, or how to […]

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Avoiding ATM Withdrawal Fees When Traveling Abroad

July 30, 2013

Although using ATM’s when traveling abroad is generally a smart strategy for getting the best exchange rates for your dollars, many ATM transactions come with fees that cancel out any savings you might expect. Luckily, as TPG contributor Nick Ewen illustrates, there are some ways to avoid these fees, including knowing which foreign banks your […]

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Just Say No To Dynamic Currency Conversion

July 22, 2013

If you’ve traveled abroad lately and used a credit card (or even if you’ve just charged something from a company outside the US on PayPal) you’ve probably noticed the increasing prevalence of something called “dynamic currency conversion.” Basically, instead of just charging the amount in Euros or pounds or whatever currency the purchase is in, […]

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