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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Chase Sapphire Reserve
Each Saturday, we round up news stories that you may have missed from the week before, including several that already appeared on The Points Guy, and some more that we haven’t covered yet. If you’re an avid TPG reader, scroll down for the new stuff. Here’s the top miles, points and travel news you may have missed this week:
A new year means a chance to make sure you’re maximizing the points you earn and redeem. Put together an even stronger points strategy by taking advantage of the best rewards credit card offers available this month.
To start off the new year, Southwest discontinued the ability to transfer hotel points for Companion Pass qualification. After many dismayed people reached out to the airline, Southwest very generously decided to reinstate the hotel transfers for Companion Pass qualification until March 31, 2017.
The arrival of a new year means it’s a perfect time to take inventory of your life — including your credit cards. If you find yourself in one (or more) of these situations, it may be time to consider applying for a new credit card.
Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. Chase will only be offering the incredible 100,000 Ultimate Reward point sign-up bonus for the Sapphire Reserve until January 12. Note, however, that you will likely be able to apply in-branch and still receive the bonus for a little while longer (probably until March 12).
For the seventh year in a row, there were no deaths as a result of airplane crashes on US commercial airlines anywhere in the world. Commercial aviation remains by far one of the safest ways to travel.
In Other News…
American Airlines Offers First Buy Miles Promo of 2017
You can earn up to a 50% bonus when you purchase AAdvantage miles between now and January 30, 2017. But, as you can see in the chart above, it isn’t the best deal and there will likely better offers to come in 2017.
Southwest Airlines Adds Cincinnati to Its Route Map
Delta long held a firm grip on Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) — charging ridiculously high prices while at the same time reducing the former hub to a shell of what it once was. Time have changed, however — Southwest finally shared its plans to enter the market. Beginning June 4, 2017, the airline will operate flights to Chicago’s Midway Airport (MDW) and Baltimore-Washington International Airport (BWI).
You Can Now Text Your Friends for Free on Select Alaska Airlines Flights
This week Alaska Airlines shared that it had added a complimentary service to help passengers stay connected while in-flight. You’ll be able to use iMessage, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger for free on Gogo-equipped Alaska flights.
Premium Passengers To Get Luxe New Pajamas on Qatar
Passengers traveling in Qatar Airways first class on flights between Doha (DOH) and Bangkok (BKK), Guangzhou (CAN), London (LHR), Paris (CDG) and Sydney (SYD) can now enjoy premium sleepwear from The White Company, while business-class passengers will begin receiving the upgraded sleepwear later in the year. The sleep sets include styles for both men and women as well as slippers with a faux-fur sole for added comfort.
Register To Earn Points For Lounge Visits
The Plaza Premium lounge network has a loyalty program, called Arrture, that will award you points for each visit to one of its lounges — including those that you enter with your Priority Pass card. After every 20th visit, you’ll receive a pass for a free visit to a lounge which you can share with family or a friend. If you’re interested in joining the program, you have to sign up in-person at a Plaza Premium lounge.
With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 50,000 point sign up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards