TPG Reader Hall of Fame: Qsuite and Cairo

Nov 2, 2019

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

Today’s TPG Reader Hall of Fame story comes to you courtesy of Loren, who — together with her daughter Erin — managed a bucket-list trip to Egypt complete with a stint in Qatar Airways’ famous Qsuite business class. Let’s take a look at how they did it:

Loren is a self-professed points and miles newbie, though you wouldn’t know it from her bookings. She and her daughter flew business class in both directions, taking advantage of generous partnerships and transferable points currencies to book award tickets on two separate airlines while still managing to fly together. This is in part thanks to Juicy Miles, an award-booking service that helps customers maximize their mileage redemptions.

Photo courtesy of Loren McLean.
Business class in Royal Jordanian.

First, however, they had to earn their points and miles. They acquired these via a variety of techniques with travel rewards credit cards, including welcome bonuses, everyday spend, and referrals, eventually racking up 315,000 points that they used for lavish flights — and even a stay at an expensive Marriott in Zurich. Here are the cards they used:

The information for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.   

They spent most of their points on premium-cabin flights, choosing to pay out of pocket for a (nearly) all-inclusive tour once in Egypt, that lasted a full 10 days. Prior to their aspirational adventure to the ancient country, however, they spent 36 hours in Zurich, touring the city and saying their goodbyes to the western world.

Here’s a breakdown of the points they spent:

Program Points Used Current TPG valuation (cents per point)
American Express Membership Rewards 55,000 2.00
Chase Ultimate Rewards 70,000 2.00
American Airlines AAdvantage 140,000 1.40
Marriott Bonvoy 50,000 0.80

Here’s how they redeemed them:

Flights City Name Class of service Points used Comments
Flight Boston to Zurich Swiss Airlines Business 70,000 Chase (transferred to United)
Flight Boston to Zurich Swiss Airlines Business 55,000 American Express (transferred to Aeroplan)
Flight Zurich to Cairo Alitalia Economy N/A $600 paid
Flight Cairo to Amman to Doha to Boston Royal Jordanian, Qatar Airways Business 140,000 American Airlines miles (20,000 transferred from Marriott)

 

Hotels City Name Points used Comments
Hotel rewards Zurich Zurich Marriott 50,000 N/A
Hotel paid Cairo, Aswan, Abu Simbel, Luxor, Hurghada N/A N/A Paid $1600 (2 people)

All told, they spent just over 12 days on their journey, which included sights from some of the most famous spots in the world. Best of all? Maximizing their use of points and miles meant that they were able to take on a truly inspirational vacation and make it affordable. Great job, guys!

 

All photos courtesy of Loren McLean.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.