US Bank Now Allows for Instant Reward Redemptions for Travel Booked Anywhere
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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Card
US Bank just introduced a new and incredibly easy way to redeem rewards for travel. US Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Card and US Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Card are now eligible for instant point redemptions against travel purchases via its “Real-Time Mobile Rewards” feature.
Once enrolled, you’ll be able to redeem points against purchases right after you’ve completed the transaction. US Bank will send you a text message asking if you want to use points, and if so, you just reply with “Redeem.” US Bank had real-time mobile rewards before, but it had excluded travel purchases.
What makes this a valuable feature is that you don’t have to book through a travel portal to redeem your points. If you’re not transferring to a travel partner, a popular way to book travel is to go through a bank’s travel portal where points have a fixed rate and are treated like cash — like with the Chase Sapphire Reserve at 1.5 cents per point or Citi Premier Card for 1.25 cents per point.
Essentially, this move doesn’t restrict you to a bank’s travel portal, so you have the option of booking anyway you please. Bank portals can be hard to navigate, sometimes show higher prices than other options and can sell restrictive bulk airfares that can cause difficulties when trying to apply upgrades. You can also book through online shopping portals that can offer extra miles and points on purchases, and you should actually receive points for making the purchase itself too.
You’ll have to activate the feature under the ‘card benefits’ section by logging into your US Bank account on a desktop browser.
H/T: Frequent Miler
This card from Bank of America gets really interesting if you have a BofA checking, savings or investment account. Depending on the value of your combined accounts you can potentially get as much as 3.5x points on travel/dining and 2.625x points on other purchases making it the richest consumer banking bonus out there.
- Receive 50,000 bonus points – a $500 value – after you make at least $3,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening
- Earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all other purchases
- If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25%-75% more points on every purchase
- No limit to the points you can earn and your points don't expire
- Redeem for cash back as a statement credit, deposit into eligible Bank of America® accounts, credit to eligible Merrill accounts, or gift cards or purchases at the Bank of America Travel Center
- Get up to $200 in combined airline incidental and airport expedited screening statement credits + valuable travel insurance protections
- No Foreign Transaction Fees
- Low $95 annual fee