Benji Stawski, TPG intern extraordinaire: My 10 favorite TPG stories of 2019

Dec 28, 2019

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2019 was an exciting year for credit card refreshes, flight deals, aircraft retrofits and more. As we get ready to usher in the new year, the TPG team is taking a look back on our favorite stories of the last 12 months.

Today, Benji Stawski shares his 10 favorite posts of the year. Benji is a full-time student and contributor for the site, covering all things points, miles, credit cards, travel and aviation.

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1. Nonstop awards to Australia and New Zealand from 10k miles round-trip

This was not only one of the best deals of the year, but one of the best deals to Australia most of us will ever see. Although I wasn’t able to take advantage of the deal myself, I’m glad that many TPG readers were.

(Photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy)
(Photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy)

2. Aboard Delta’s first retrofitted 767-400ER with brand-new Delta One seats

Thanks to some eagle-eyed AvGeeks in the TPG team, we discovered that Delta’s first retrofitted Boeing 767 would begin operating well ahead of schedule and I was able to snag a seat on its first revenue flight. The IFE wasn’t working, but this was still one of my favorite flights of the year.

(Photo by Benji Stawski / The Points Guy)
(Photo by Benji Stawski/The Points Guy)

3. How we booked an $8,000 ticket to Tokyo for less than the cost of a sandwich

Earlier this year, we launched a new video series called “Have Points, Will Travel,” in which we sent videographer Ian Agrimis around the world on some of the most redemption-friendly flights. Every episode is accompanied by a guide that teaches you how to do the same. In this episode, we booked Ian a first-class ticket to Tokyo for less than the cost of a Wagyu sandwich.

4. How college students can maximize travel rewards credit cards

As a senior in college myself, I’m a big fan of all of the student-related content on the site. This guide is an excellent starting point for students looking to get into the world of travel rewards credit cards.

Image courtesy of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
(Image courtesy of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

5. The 10 best Priority Pass lounges around the world

Airport lounges have become more accessible than ever thanks to programs like Priority Pass. This piece is a look at my 10 favorite Priority Pass lounges around the world.

(Image courtesy of SkyTeam)

6. New and improved: First look at Alaska’s renovated lounge at LAX

Being an Alaska loyalist and from Los Angeles, I frequently visit the Alaska Lounge at LAX, so I was excited that it got a much-needed facelift.

(Photo by Benji Stawski/The Points Guy)
(Photo by Benji Stawski/The Points Guy)

7. TPG beginner’s guide: Everything you need to know about points, miles, airlines and credit cards

TPG Social Media Editor Samantha Rosen did an amazing job completely revamping our beginner’s guide. It’s always the first article I share with anyone who wants to learn the ins and outs of points, miles, airlines and credit cards.

(Graphic by Abbie Winters)

8. I fly over 150,000 miles a year, but this flight from Europe made me feel like a complete novice

Nobody’s perfect — even at TPG we make rookie travel mistakes sometimes.

(Photo by Nick Ellis / The Points Guy)
(Photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy)

9. The 5 best limited-time credit card offers to sign up for in December

There are a ton of great credit card offers out there, so it can be difficult prioritizing your sign-ups. To help, I started rounding up the best limited-time offers available each month. We saw some great offers this year, with a number of cards offering welcome bonuses of 100,000 points or more.

10. Stay at these 6 private island resorts using just your points

Staying on a private island is on nearly everyone’s bucket list. In this post, I laid out how you can do so using just your points.

(Photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy)

Featured photo by Benji Stawski/The Points Guy.

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