Can I Combine Starpoints with Friends to Book a Room?

TPG reader AK sent me a tweet to ask about pooling Starpoints: “If my friends and I sign up for the Starwood Amex card, can we combine points to book a longer stay?” The award travel game is one where it often pays to join forces. By pooling hotel points with friends or family, you can increase your booking power, share…

Do EQMs Earned from Spending Count for a Status Challenge?

TPG reader Chris sent me a message on Facebook to ask about the American Airlines status challenge: “If I spend $20,000 on the AAdvantage Aviator Silver card, do the elite miles I get count toward an American Airlines status challenge?” Status challenges can be a great shortcut to earning elite benefits with both airlines and hotels, especially if you already have…

How Should I Use Leftover Miles from an Airline I Never Fly?

TPG reader Frank sent me a message on Facebook looking for advice on what to do with miles he doesn’t plan to use: “I have about 4,700 Delta miles and 3,800 American miles, but I only ever fly United or JetBlue. I was told my miles will expire in the next few months. What should I do with them?” My…

Can I Stack Elite Night Credits from Marriott Premier Cards?

Update: Chase wrote in to clarify its terms and conditions, letting us know that it is indeed possible to stack elite credits. Here’s what a Chase rep had to say: “A cardmember can combine the elite credit benefits from a Marriott Rewards Premier Business Card and Marriott Rewards Premier card to be eligible for the…

Should I Use Rocketmiles to Book Hotel Rooms?

TPG reader Ellie sent me a message on Facebook to ask about hotel booking sites: “What do you think of using Rocketmiles to make hotel reservations?” One important step in maximizing hotel stays is deciding how to book your room in the first place. There’s certainly no shortage of options, as dozens of online travel agents and aggregators…

Will I Earn PQDs by Paying for United Premier Elite Status?

TPG reader Bryson sent me a message on Facebook to ask about earning elite status with United: “If I buy United Premier status this year, does the cost count toward the PQD requirements for elite qualification next year?” Earlier this year, United Airlines ran a promotion allowing targeted MileagePlus members to purchase elite status outright for 2016, as well…

Does an Airline Credit Card Improve My Upgrade Priority?

TPG reader David sent me a tweet to ask about upgrading on Delta: “Do Delta Reserve cardholders get a higher upgrade priority over other Medallion members?” Upgrades are one of my favorite benefits of airline elite status. I don’t really fit in most economy seats, so having more space is pretty important to me, especially on longer flights. But no matter…

Can I Use Southwest Rapid Rewards for International Flights?

TPG reader Michael sent me a message on Facebook to ask about booking awards on Southwest Airlines: “I have a stash of Southwest points, but I’m not sure how best to use them. Can Rapid Rewards be transferred, or can I use them internationally?” There’s plenty to like about the Rapid Rewards program: You can get solid value by redeeming points for Wanna Get…

Which Credit Factor is More Important to My Overall Score?

TPG reader Kevin emailed me to ask about credit scores: I have two conflicting dings on my credit report: a low average age of accounts, and a low number of accounts. If I add more accounts, the average age will go down, so will it help me or hurt me overall? For people without a lengthy credit history, building…

Can I Transfer Points Both Ways Between Loyalty Programs?

TPG reader Claire sent me an email to ask about transferring points: “I know I can transfer 10,000 Ultimate Rewards points to Virgin Atlantic for 10,000 miles, and I can transfer those miles to Hilton for 15,000 HHonors points. Can I also go the other way and turn 15,000 HHonors points into 10,000 Ultimate Rewards points?” One great…