TPG Reader Hall of Fame: Walking the red carpet in Hollywood

Nov 8, 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.

Today’s TPG Hall of Fame story comes to you courtesy of Shana, whose creative use of points and miles meant that she and her boyfriend got a chance to walk the red (or in this case, blue) carpet at the premiere of Aquaman, where they spent the evening schmoozing with some of Hollywood’s hottest stars.

Let’s check out how they did it.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Photo courtesy of Shana Gainey
(Photo courtesy of Shana Gainey.)

Tickets to premieres aren’t just handed out willy-nilly, but fortunately for Shana and her boyfriend, Jesse, Marriott Bonvoy Moments was auctioning off several packages of tickets. For those unfamiliar with the program, Marriott Moments are unique experiences set up for auction, with customers bidding points instead of money to win these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. In fact, tickets to the TPG Awards are being auctioned off right now!

Related: Which Marriott Bonvoy credit card is right for you?

Shana ended up winning two tickets to the premiere with a bid of 127,500 Marriott Bonvoy points, which included red-carpet access and after-party tickets. Wanting to arrive to Hollywood in style, she and Jesse flew first class all the way to Los Angeles before checking in to the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills. They swung this using points and miles earned from a variety of sources, including travel rewards credit card welcome bonuses, work travel and everyday spending. Here are the cards they used:

Here are the points they spent:

Program Points Used Current TPG valuation (cents per point)
American Express Membership Rewards 32,000 2.00
Marriott Bonvoy 127,500 0.80
American Airlines AAdvantage 100,000 1.40

Here’s how they used them:

Purpose Place Name Class of service Points used Comments
Flight Washington, D.C. to Los Angeles R/T American Airlines First 100,000 Earned via business travel
Hotel Beverly Hills Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills N/A 32,000 American Express (transferred to Hilton)
Award package Hollywood Marriott Bonvoy Moments Aquaman Premiere N/A 127,500 Won at auction

All told, Shana and Jesse spent nearly 260,000 points for their venture — a great deal, considering this trip can’t actually be purchased. Great job!

Featured photo courtesy of LPETTET/iStock by Getty Images.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit

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.