Watch an MD-80 Jet Almost Blow Away Beachgoers in St. Maarten

There are plenty of reasons to visit St. Maarten — crystal clear waters, beautiful beaches, relaxed Caribbean lifestyle and…plane spotting? Yes, plane spotting. The Caribbean island holds a special place in the hearts of aviation enthusiasts everywhere because its main airport, Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) is located adjacent to Maho Beach, a sun drenched…

What’s a Good Tropical Destination for 3-Cabin First Class?

TPG reader Esteban sent me a message on Facebook looking for honeymoon ideas: “We’re getting married soon and deciding where we should go on our honeymoon. What’s a good tropical destination that would allow us to experience a full three-cabin first class?” There are plenty of deserted beach locales you could choose from, but one stands…

How Do I Maximize Credit Card Rewards for Large Purchases?

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Citi / AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard, British Airways Visa Signature Card TPG Reader Jaren sent me a message on Facebook to ask about how to maximize a large upcoming purchase: “I’m planning for a $25,000 home remodel. What’s the best credit card strategy…

What Should I Do with Over One Million Points?

TPG Reader Micah tweeted to ask about how to make use of a large bank of rewards. @ThePointsGuy — “What should I do with over 1.1 million IHG points?” One of my cardinal rules of award travel is that you should earn points and miles with a plan to use them. Because of the risk of…

Do Rewards Vary Between Brands in Each Hotel Chain?

TPG Reader Charles sent me a message on Facebook to ask about earning hotel rewards: “Do some hotels within one chain give you more points than another? If so, which Marriott and Hilton hotels give you the most?” Hotel loyalty programs offer a pretty wide spread of earning rates. Even within individual programs, your points might vary by a factor of…

Do Authorized User Purchases Count toward Credit Card Bonuses?

TPG reader David tweeted to ask about credit card spending by authorized users: @ThePointsGuy — “Do purchases by an employee on my SPG Amex count toward the minimum spending requirement and Gold status?” Travel rewards credit cards are among the best tools for boosting your loyalty account balances, since you can take advantage of lucrative sign-up offers and spending bonuses to earn points and…

How Can I Keep Airline Miles from Expiring?

TPG Reader Tim sent me a question on Twitter about how to keep travel rewards active: @ThePointsGuy — “I have a bunch of United miles that are about to expire. What’s the best way to save them?” One of the most costly mistakes award travelers can make is to let points or miles expire. Once you’ve put all…

Is the Arrival Plus Card Better than 2% Cash Back Rewards?

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard TPG Reader Maxwell emailed to ask about why one cash-back card doesn’t get more attention: “Why the love for Barclaycard Arrival Plus, when Citi Double Cash offers 1% back initially plus another %1 with no annual fee?”…

How Do I Redeem Leftover Rewards from a Foreign Airline?

TPG Reader Kayla emailed with a question about how to book awards with LAN Airlines: “I have 35,000 LANPASS kilometers that I’ve been trying to use for ages, but I’m having trouble finding awards from the US online, and calling LAN is frustrating. Is there a way to book these flights without too much hassle?” LANPASS is the loyalty program of Chilean carrier…

What’s Your Favorite Hotel Program for Stays in the US?

TPG Reader Carrie sent me a tweet to ask about hotel programs: @ThePointsGuy — “What’s your favorite hotel program domestically? I’m mostly a US hotel user, but want to use abroad eventually.” It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of Starwood Preferred Guest. From New York to Miami to the St. Regis Princeville on Kauai, I’ve had great experiences at…