Last Chance: Roundup of Offers Ending May 31
Deals come and go, and a good way to maximize your travel rewards is by making sure you get in on the best ones. Today TPG Senior Points & Miles Correspondent Nick Ewen looks at some particularly juicy deals and promotions that are disappearing soon.
It's been a busy few months in the points and miles world, with American and US Airways integrating their respective frequent flyer programs, a variety of enhanced credit card offers and (unfortunately) devaluations from British Airways and Southwest. Some of the deals that have popped up during this time are set to expire in the next few days, so today I want to give you a quick roundup of offers that you should take advantage of before they're gone for good!
From now until May 31, Hyatt Gold Passport is offering a 40% discount on purchases of 10,000 points or more (up to a maximum of 55,000). While buying points or miles tends to be a pretty poor value proposition, this bonus actually drops your cost to 1.71 cents per point. This is lower than TPG's most recent valuation of 1.8 cents per point, making it a good option for boosting your account balance.
This is even more lucrative if you have the Hyatt Credit Card from Chase and plan to redeem points for a stay in the next couple of months, since Hyatt is currently offering a 20% refund on award stays for cardholders (though you had to have registered by March 31 to be eligible for this promotion). If you can take advantage of both offers, the purchase price drops to 1.36 cents per point, which is a phenomenal value! If you need some inspiration for where to spend those points, check out my posts on top overall Hyatt properties and top low-tier Hyatt properties.
Another great offer expiring on May 31 is the special discount on new FoundersCard memberships exclusively for TPG readers. If you apply for the card and use the code FCPOINTSVIP, you'll get a $400 yearly discount on the card's annual fee and have the $95 initiation fee waived. This card offers some terrific travel benefits, including hotel and airline elite status, hotel benefits and other business discounts. For more information, check out TPG Contributor Leigh Rowan's review from earlier in the year.
Club Carlson Bonus Award Night/Lower Category Redemption
Two of the biggest devaluation bombs to drop this spring came from Club Carlson. First, the program announced the end of the bonus night award benefit on the Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature Card and other co-branded cards. Then, just a month later, the program announced category changes that resulted in over 200 of its properties moving up at least one category. Fortunately, neither one of these changes kicks in until June, so you still have a few days to take advantage of each. Check out my list of top Club Carlson properties for award redemptions for additional information.
Avianca LifeMiles Buy Miles Bonus
Through May 29, you can purchase Avianca LifeMiles for as little as 1.5 cents apiece. The bonus for US residents is limited to 100% (1.65 cents apiece), while residents of countries outside of the US and certain Central American countries can enjoy the full bonus. This Colombia-based carrier can be a terrific option for booking Star Alliance awards without fuel surcharges despite last year's devaluation. Just be aware that these need to be booked on the phone, and Avianca's customer service leaves a bit to be desired.
IHG Rewards Club Card Bonus
Another limited-time offer that's rumored to be expiring in a few days is the increased sign-up bonus on the IHG Rewards Club Select Credit Card. This bonus was originally set to expire on March 31 before Chase extended it. You'll earn 70,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months, and enjoy benefits such as IHG Platinum Elite status and a free night certificate just for paying the $49 annual fee. I recently added this card to my wallet and met the spending requirements; now I'm just waiting for the bonus to post!
Unfortunately, many IHG properties are changing categories in July, with 300 going up by 5,000 to 10,000 points per night. However, you can still get some great value out of the program; see my list of top IHG properties for award redemptions to get an idea of where to redeem your points.
United MileagePlus Explorer Bonus
Ok, so this one technically doesn't expire until June 2, but it's another great bonus that ends soon, and is worth including. For the next few days, the United MileagePlus Explorer Card is offering an increased sign-up bonus of 50,000 miles when you spend $3,000 in the first three months after opening your account. In addition to the bonus, the card comes with a number of lucrative benefits, including free checked bags and priority boarding on United, plus no foreign transaction fees. Check out my earlier post for other reasons to get the Explorer Card, as well as my tips on how to use the sign-up bonus for travel to Europe this summer!
Are you planning to take advantage of any of these deals before they're gone?