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BarclayCard Arrival Plus

Card Comparison: Fixed-Value Earning Points Cards

October 22, 2014

Today, TPG Special Contributor Eric Rosen takes a look at four of the top fixed-value points programs and the credit cards that can help you maximize each of them. There are three types of travel rewards: transferable points like Amex Membership Rewards or Chase Ultimate Rewards; program specific rewards like airline miles or hotel points; and fixed-value points, where […]

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Overview of Hotel Resort Fees and How to Avoid Them

October 21, 2014

As an award travel enthusiast, I’ll be the first to admit that airlines and hotels don’t always make it easy. Changing programs, inconsistent policies, and unexpected fees all add to the challenge of using your points and miles effectively. But for every problem that pops up, you can count on award travelers to find several solutions. […]

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Why Gas Credit Cards Can’t Compare to Travel Rewards

October 20, 2014

Most airlines and hotels have co-branded credit cards that offer a good (or sometimes great) return on spending within the brand. Many gas brands have similar card offerings, but today TPG Contributor Jason Steele explains why the value of these cards just doesn’t measure up. Gas isn’t cheap, and it’s a product that most Americans need regularly, so […]

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Maximizing Credit Card Bonus Categories to Earn More Points

October 17, 2014

Many of the best points-earning credit cards offer cardholders the opportunity to earn bonus points or miles in certain merchant categories, whether they be grocery stores, gas stations, restaurants, or others. With the diversity of credit cards out there and the sheer variety of purchases the average person makes over the course of a year (or even a […]

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How to Avoid Fuel Surcharges on Award Travel

October 15, 2014

Call me crazy, but I tend to think that if you have to pay for something, it isn’t free. Yet many airlines charge frequent flyers for the privilege of redeeming miles by adding fuel surcharges to award travel. Today, TPG Contributor Jason Steele explains which airlines are the worst offenders, and offers some tips for how to avoid these […]

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Top Cards That Offer Credits for Airline Incidentals

October 13, 2014

An important step toward getting the most out of your travel is to not only maximize your points and miles, but also to minimize your expenses. Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele explains how you can lower your cash outlay for both paid and award tickets by taking advantage of some very useful credit card benefits. Call it unbundling, […]

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Bank of America Launches New Preferred Rewards Program

October 8, 2014

The travel rewards credit card market is always evolving, with new opportunities popping up just as fast as others disappear. While this year will spell the end of some cards and benefits, we’ve also seen new ones arise, like primary rental insurance on the Chase Sapphire Preferred, and the launch of the new Citi Double Cash card. This week it’s Bank of America’s […]

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Which Virgin America Visa Signature Card is Best for You?

October 8, 2014

I’m a fan of over-the-top credit card sign-up bonuses that offer a bonanza of miles all at once, but there are plenty of cards with less substantial bonuses that are worth having for their other benefits. Today TPG Contributor Nick Ewen shows us the ins and outs of two such cards from Virgin America, and offers some guidelines for deciding […]

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Choosing a Rewards Credit Card: 5 Questions Before You Apply

October 7, 2014

In the time I’ve spent mastering the art of award travel, I’ve learned that there are many ways to get from A to B, but they’re far from equal. One airline or hotel might suit you where another won’t, and the same goes for rewards credit cards. Having a card that meets your particular needs is an important step toward traveling the […]

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Sapphire Preferred or Arrival Plus for General Spending?

October 5, 2014

TPG reader Kenny emailed me to ask: “I have both the Chase Sapphire Preferred and the Barclaycard Arrival Plus. I’ve already met the minimum spending requirements to get the bonuses. For all of my travel and dining, I use Sapphire Preferred on top of the Chase Freedom bonus categories. For all my other spending, where […]

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Saving on Family Ski Trips – Flights, Hotels, Lifts & More

October 3, 2014

Maximizing travel is often as much about saving money as it is about earning points. Since winter is coming, I asked TPG Contributor (and avid skier) Jason Steele to share his strategies for keeping family ski vacations affordable. Ski trips make for great family vacations, but the total price can be stunningly high. It’s not uncommon […]

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Hotel Tonight: Seven Day Advance Booking and 10% Credit Back

October 2, 2014

User-friendly hotel booking app Hotel Tonight recently updated its service to make finding discounted rooms a bit easier. In the past, the app offered same-day hotel bookings only (typically at a deeply discounted price) in over 500 destinations (over 10,000+ hotels) in the United States, Europe, Canada and Mexico. Those who aren’t quite so last-minute with their hotel bookings will be pleased to […]

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Amex Premier Rewards Gold Losing 15,000 Point Spend Bonus

October 1, 2014

Spend bonuses on a credit card can dramatically increase its value proposition and justify the annual fee. The American Express Premier Rewards Gold card has been one of my go-to cards for years. It offers 3 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent on airfare and 2 points per dollar spent on gas and groceries. In my […]

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Strategies For Minimizing Credit Card Annual Fees

October 1, 2014

Update: The 70,000 point Ink Plus offer is no longer available online but may still be available in a Chase branch. View the current online offer here. As a points and miles devotee, I’m always trying to get the best return I can on my rewards, and an important part of my strategy is knowing how to […]

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Credit Cards that Offer Elite Status for Car Rentals

September 29, 2014

At a time when elite benefits are shrinking and those that still exist are becoming more elusive, I’m appreciative of any elite status that I can get and maintain the easy way, even for rental cars. Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele discusses credit cards that let you circumnavigate the elite status requirements at rental car agencies, so you can reap the […]

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Truly Pet-Friendly Hotels: The Weekly Wish

September 25, 2014

Many of you know that I’m the proud parent of a sweet, styling, jet-setting little Blue French Bulldog named Miles. He travels with me whenever it’s feasible, and I love having him along. TPG Contributor Nick Ewen is also a dog owner, and like me, he’s encountered some inhospitable policies from hotels that advertise themselves as […]

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Ranking the Top Cash-Back Credit Cards

September 23, 2014

Because I’m so focused on travel, I tend to prefer credit cards that specifically offer travel benefits, such as co-branded cards that earn airline miles or hotel points, or those that earn transferable points like Chase Ultimate Rewards or Amex Membership Rewards (which I can use to top up my loyalty accounts when I need to). However, as I always say, […]

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An Unofficial Foodie Guide to Playa del Carmen

September 22, 2014

Travel blogger Ryan Gargiulo of Pause the Moment recently spent a year as an ex-pat in Playa del Carmen. We asked him to share his insider knowledge on the best spots to eat in this bohemian Mexican city on the Caribbean Sea. Stay tuned in the coming days for more stories in Mexico. With an average of 240 […]

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Adding Credit Card Authorized Users – Benefits and Bonuses

September 22, 2014

Many credit cards offer incentives for adding an authorized user. For example, the current sign-up bonus from the Chase Sapphire Preferred offers 40,000 points when you spend $3,000 in 3 months, plus an additional 5,000 points when you add an authorized user to your account and they make a purchase within the first 3 months. Thus, […]

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Weekend Escape to Saint-Tropez

September 19, 2014

Summer is swamped with tourists in the South of France, but the shoulder season months are the perfect time to visit jetset destinations like Saint-Tropez. Nice-based contributing writer Lane Nieset takes us on a weekend getaway to this seaside village that is so much more than swanky nightclubs and megayachts.  The quiet fishing town of […]

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Which Credit Card Is Best for Economy Awards to London?

September 14, 2014

TPG Reader Steven tweeted me to ask: @thepointsguy: “I value free/low-cost economy flights to London Heathrow. On which credit card should I concentrate my spending? I have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, and the Citi Executive AAdvantage World Elite MasterCard.” I usually use my miles and points to book business class flights or […]

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Which Credit Card Is Best for Miscellaneous Travel Expenses?

September 14, 2014

TPG reader Gisele emailed me to ask: “I’m organizing a trip to Italy in the spring and would like to know if there’s a good credit card for less obvious travel expenses, such as Eurorail passes, museum tickets, tour buses, etc. I also would like to use Airbnb instead of a hotel. Do you have […]

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Tips for Train Travel & Transportation in France

August 23, 2014

There’s a reason the French trains are favored by locals and tourists alike—they’re one of the quickest and easiest ways to get around the country. I asked Nice-based contributor Lane Nieset to fill us in on the ins and outs of trail travel in France with a guide on everything you need to know to […]

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Best Travel Credit Card Offers for August 2014

August 20, 2014

Sign-up bonuses for travel credit cards are always changing, and as part of your strategy for maximizing points and miles earning, it pays to stay informed so you don’t miss the best deals out there.  To help you weigh your options, I like to provide an updated monthly list of the top travel credit card offers. Below you’ll […]

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