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BarclayCard Arrival Plus

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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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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Top 0% APR Credit Cards That Earn Points & Miles

August 19, 2014

Generally when I write about credit cards, it’s to tell readers about the sign-up bonuses and other benefits they offer that can help enable and enrich your travels. But there are other important factors to consider when getting a new card – most critically, the impact that opening an account has on your credit score, and how applying for and using a card fits […]

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Large Family & Group Travel Tips, Tricks, and Strategies

August 15, 2014

With a family of four, I sometimes envy the ease of travel enjoyed by singles and couples. One or two award seats aren’t too hard to find, you can fit into virtually any car or hotel room, and you can travel very light. On the other hand, I know other families that routinely travel as a […]

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My Four New Credit Cards and 205,000 Miles & Points

August 5, 2014

I currently have 23 active credit cards, and my credit score is consistently in the high 700s. Earlier this year I canceled and applied for 4 new cards for 230,000 miles/points, and recently I did another round of applications to bring my year-to-date sign-up bonus total to 435,000 miles/points. Some people’s eyes pop out of […]

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Credit Cards That Offer Free Credit Scores

July 28, 2014

Earlier this year, I shared how credit scores are calculated and which credit cards offer cardmembers a free look at their credit scores. In late February, though, the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced that it’s urging major credit card issuers to provide free credit scores and related information to their customers. Several more cards and issuers have since hopped […]

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Should I Pay a Fee to Meet Credit Card Spend Requirement?

July 27, 2014

‪TPG reader Carla tweeted this week: “@thepointsguy do you think it makes sense to pay my expensive NYC rent on a credit card to meet min CC spend if there’s a $50 fee to do so?” In an ideal world we would be able to pay any bill with a credit card with no fee […]

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What’s the Best Way to Redeem Ultimate Rewards for Travel?

July 13, 2014

This past week, TPG reader Hareesh tweeted me to ask: “@thepointsguy Is it better to redeem Ultimate Rewards directly through the Chase portal, or should you transfer points to a partner and then redeem?” When you redeem Ultimate Rewards (earned from Chase credit cards like the Sapphire Preferred, Ink Bold Ink Plus, Chase Freedom, and Sapphire) through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, your points […]

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Last Chance For Tickets To The 2014 Chicago Seminars

June 30, 2014

For those of you who were unable to attend our recent TPG Reader Meet Up at the W Lakeshore in Chicago, there are still 20 seats left for the Chicago Seminars  on October 17 to 19th.  The event will be held again at the Holiday Inn Elk Grove Village near O’Hare. You can register here for $95 for the weekend, which […]

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US Airways Mastercard Bonus Miles and Refunded Fees

June 26, 2014

The US Airways Premier World Mastercard from Barclaycard is offering a 20% bonus on all earned miles from July 1 – August 31, 2014 and some lucky customers may be targeted with a 30% bonus in emails sent out this week. In addition, cardholders will receive a refund for all foreign transaction fees assessed during the […]

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Should Spouses Be Loyal to the Same or Different Airlines?

June 22, 2014

This week TPG reader Nate asked a question via Twitter: @thepointsguy–” My wife and I both travel for work. Should we be loyal to the same airline or different airlines?” Coordinating your travel and credit card strategies with your spouse or family can take a lot of effort, but can pay off if you do it […]

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Have Devaluations Made Credit Card Points More Valuable?

June 22, 2014

Update: The offers mentioned below for the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Cards from American Express have expired. View the current offers here –personal, business. Both 2013 and 2014 have seen a trend in loyalty program devaluations. Hilton kicked off the devaluation parade in early 2013, followed by Delta and United over the past several months. Even Southwest devalued their Rapid Rewards program […]

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What Are Points and Miles Worth? June Monthly Valuations

June 20, 2014

One of the questions I’m asked most often is “how much is a point or mile worth?” That question varies per person and how well they can maximize a particular currency for their needs, but still there are some points worth more than others. To give readers – both old and new – some context, […]

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10 of the Best Credit Cards for Travel- June 2014 Edition

June 9, 2014

Update: The offers mentioned below for the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Cards from American Express have expired. View the current offers here –personal, business. Update: The offer mentioned below for the Chase Freedom Visa has expired. View the current offer here.  Getting in on the most lucrative credit cards is key to maximizing your miles and points. With the continuously shifting nature of the […]

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What’s The Best Credit Card for a Trip to the World Cup?

June 8, 2014

Things are heating up in the Southern Hemisphere as the World Cup gets ready to kick off in Brazil; TPG reader Justin emailed me with a question about his upcoming trip to Rio: “I’m soon off to Brazil for the World Cup, and I’m thinking of getting a new card specifically for the trip. I currently only […]

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Barclaycard Arrival Plus vs. Southwest Premier Visa

June 8, 2014

It’s been a busy couple of months in the credit card world, with sign-up bonuses increasing across the board. Amidst all this excitement, TPG reader Ignacio tweeted me to ask: “@thepointsguy Between two credit cards – Arrival Plus World Elite (4o,ooo-point sign-up bonus, $89 annual fee waived in the first year) OR Southwest Premier Rapid Rewards […]

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Barclaycard Arrival vs. Fidelity Investment Rewards Amex

June 1, 2014

This past week, TPG reader Manu sent me a message via Facebook: “What is the advantage of the Barclaycard Arrival over the Fidelity Investment Rewards American Express Card, which also gets 2% cash back on all purchases, but (unlike the Barclaycard) has no annual fee?” When it comes to cash back, the Fidelity American Express (which earns 2% across the board and has […]

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