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Sunday Reader Questions

Which Card for Cash Back: Citi Double Cash or Amex Fidelity?

December 14, 2014

TPG reader Zach messaged me on Facebook to ask: “I’ve been considering switching to the Citi Double Cash card; this would replace my Fidelity Investment Rewards card that earns two percent cash back. Since the Citi card is MasterCard and the Fidelity one is American Express, I thought maybe the Citi card would be accepted in more […]

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Should I Buy up to American Executive Platinum Elite Status?

December 14, 2014

TPG reader Al sent me a message on Facebook asking: “US Airways just quietly posted their revised buy-up to elite program, which is pretty close if not identical to American’s boost program. Do you think it’s worth it to buy up for higher elite status?” It’s December, which means it’s crunch time for elite status. […]

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Which Credit Card Is Best When Paying for Hyatt Stays?

December 14, 2014

TPG reader Talissa emailed me to ask: “Which card would be better to use for the “cash” portion of Hyatt’s “points + cash” option: the Chase Sapphire Preferred (2X points on travel) or Hyatt’s own credit card?” The Chase Sapphire Preferred card and the Chase Hyatt Visa each have their own sets of benefits for hotel spending. So […]

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What Will Happen to My US Airways Dividend Miles in 2015?

December 14, 2014

TPG reader @MrMainStreet tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “Are Dividend Miles going away with the US Airways/AA merger? Do we need to spend them before Quarter Two?” People get nervous about airline mergers, as there always seem to be winners and losers. American Airlines recently announced that the AAdvantage and Dividend Miles loyalty programs will merge in […]

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Will I Get SkyClub Lounge Access When I Fly Delta?

December 14, 2014

TPG reader Tiffany tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “I’m flying JFK-SEA on Delta over the holidays and wanted to see if I’ll have SkyClub access before my flight?” Well, without knowing anything about this trip or your situation, it’s hard to say. If you’re just flying in economy and you don’t have a credit card […]

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Can I Use the Amex Platinum Airline Credit for Gift Cards?

December 7, 2014

TPG reader Stan tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “What is the current 2014 success rate of getting an Amex Platinum reimbursement for purchasing airline gift cards?” One of my favorite perks of the American Express Platinum card is the annual $200 airline fee credit. Every year you get to select a different airline of your […]

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Should I Credit To American If I’m Already Executive Platinum?

December 7, 2014

TPG reader Brendan tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “I’ve already re-qualified for American Executive Platinum for 2015, but still have a few trips this year, should I credit elsewhere?” December is crunch time for those of us who value airline elite status. You’ve got until December 31, 2014 to embark on a flight that will […]

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What’s the Best Strategy For Redeeming Family Award Tickets?

December 7, 2014

TPG reader Hung asked me on Facebook: “I’m planning a trip to Vietnam next summer with my family of four, but can’t book United award tickets for four people at the same time. When I select two people, there are many award seats available. Can I redeem points for two seats first, and then immediately redeem another […]

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Why Are British Airways Fuel Surcharges Still So High?

December 7, 2014

TPG reader Donald emailed me to ask: “Has anyone asked British Airways why they continue to charge those outrageous fuel surcharges when fuel costs have dropped more than 20% in the last few months? How do they continue to justify this?” There are a lot of things that don’t make sense when it comes to […]

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What’s the Best Way to Get Free Hotel Club Lounge Access?

December 7, 2014

TPG reader Adam tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “What are some of the best ways to get club lounge access at hotels without paying for it?” We always talk about airline lounge access, but to be honest, hotel lounges can be even better, including much nicer spreads and open bars. Some of my personal favorite […]

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When Should I Get the SPG Amex Card to Maximize the Bonus?

November 30, 2014

TPG reader Dave tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy–”Is now a good time to get the SPG Amex? Does that card ever offer more than the 25,000 points sign-up bonus, or should I apply now?”  If you follow my Monthly Valuation Series, you’ll know that I think Starpoints are the most valuable loyalty currency out there. You can transfer them to […]

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Can I get both the US Airways MasterCard & AA MasterCard?

November 30, 2014

TPG reader Brian tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy–”I just got the US Airways MasterCard with a 40,000 mile bonus. Can I apply for the AAdvantage Platinum MasterCard and the 50,000 bonus miles next year?” There are a lot of different credit card options available right now if you fly US Airways  or American. Among them are the Barclaycard US […]

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Are AAdvantage Miles Worth More than British Airways Avios?

November 30, 2014

TPG reader Mark tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy–”I’ve always banked miles earned on British Airways to American Airlines, but am I better off earning Avios and using them for American flights?” With so many airline partners these days, you have a lot of choices when deciding which one to fly. If you fly American Airlines, for example, […]

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Can a Card Issuer Take Back My Sign-Up Bonus?

November 30, 2014

TPG reader Edgar tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy–”Will a card issuer take back points from a sign-up bonus if I meet the spending requirement and six months later get a credit that brings me back under the threshold?”  If you earn points or miles from a purchase and then six months down the line you get a […]

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What’s Proper Etiquette if I’m Upgraded and My Client Isn’t?

November 30, 2014

TPG reader Christopher tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy–”What is proper etiquette when I get a first class upgrade because I’m Delta Diamond, and  my client is back in row 27?” Unfortunately, this question has no clear “right” answer. This used to happen to me all the time. I remember once back when I worked at Morgan Stanley, […]

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When Must I Meet the Spend Threshold for a Sign-Up Bonus?

November 23, 2014

TPG reader Sophia tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “Must the minimum spending requirement be met when my third statement closes or exactly 90 days after opening the account in order to earn a sign-up bonus?” In order to get lucrative credit card sign-up bonuses, you often have to hit spend thresholds. For example, the BarclayCard Arrival Plus, […]

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Will Delta MQMs Roll Over If I Don’t Qualify on MQDs?

November 23, 2014

TPG reader Scott tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “Do Delta Medallion Qualifying Miles roll over if you haven’t qualified on Medallion Qualifying Dollars? I have 65k MQMs this year but am only a Silver Medallion.”  In 2014, both Delta and United instituted revenue requirements to qualify for elite status. For example, if you fly 100,000 miles […]

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Should I Get the Southwest Companion Pass Now or in 2015?

November 23, 2014

TPG reader Mike tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “Is now the best time to get the Southwest credit card if I want the Companion Pass, or should I wait until 2015?”  The Southwest Companion Pass is one of the most amazing airline perks out there. It lets you bring a designated companion along on any Southwest […]

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What are the Most Aspirational Hotel Award Redemptions?

November 23, 2014

TPG reader Krassi tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy– “What are the most aspirational hotel award redemptions out there?” Over the past year, we’ve seen a lot of hotel programs devalue, meaning you need to use more points than ever for award nights–especially at the higher end properties. Krassi is curious about my top picks for hotel awards, so I put […]

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Which Credit Card Is Best For Multiple Programs?

November 16, 2014

TPG reader John tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy — “My employees and I have at least 100 flights and hotel stays annually with various airlines and hotel chains. What credit card should I use?” Back when I was traveling a lot with Morgan Stanley, I luckily had my choice of airlines (most of the time). However, when it comes to […]

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Can I Use Amex Membership Rewards to Book Travel for Others?

November 16, 2014

TPG reader Darlene emailed me to ask: “My mother-in law has a ton of American Express Membership Rewards points, and she wants to use them to send me and my husband on a vacation. Can she book the travel through her account and put our names in?” Over the years, credit card programs like Chase Ultimate Rewards […]

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Can I Get Both Cash Back & Miles from Shopping Portals?

November 16, 2014

TPG reader Marc tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy — “Can you blend shopping portals? For example, can I use the Southwest portal to get miles and still use Ebates to get cash back, or must I choose one or the other?” Shopping portals are one of the easiest ways to rack up points and miles for […]

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Is Hyatt’s Cash + Points Booking Option a Good Value?

November 16, 2014

TPG reader Victoria tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy — “What do you think of Hyatt’s Cash + Points booking option versus just paying full price or saving up points to book rewards? I  always like having options when it comes time to redeem my points, so I was happy when Hyatt introduced the Cash + […]

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Should I Take 75,000 Point Offer for Amex Business Rewards?

November 9, 2014

TPG reader Matt tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy–”I just got an offer for a 75,000 point sign-up bonus for the American Express Business Gold Rewards Card. Should I take it?” Matt, you should absolutely take advantage of this offer! The current public offer for the American Express Business Gold Rewards is for just 25,000 Membership Rewards points after […]

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