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TPG readers' top tips for Austria

Aug. 01, 2021
6 min read
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Austria has so much more than skiing and schnitzels, from picture-perfect little towns like Hallstatt to wonderful Viennese balls to the original chocolate cake.

Given that we can learn just as much from you as you do from us, we asked you on Instagram for your hints and tips for Austria.

So without further ado, here they are.

Second cities

Salzburg

Salzburg was mentioned by several readers as worth a visit. Many fly there for its proximity to amazing ski resorts but don't get a chance to explore the city itself. It's about a three-hour drive from Vienna and is also the birthplace of Mozart, as well as being known for its impressive Baroque architecture. Treat yourself to a slice of Sachertorte in one of its many cafes or ride the cable car -- there's loads to do.

Salzburg, Austria. (Photo by Laszlo Szirtesi/Getty Images)

Innsbruck

Innsbruck is another city that most people will only have flown to for a skiing trip. That shouldn't be the case. Many readers suggested visiting this picturesque little city in Austria's Tyrol region. Taking the train is often the quickest option from Vienna -- around 45 minutes quicker than driving.

"Spend the day in Innsbruck and visit the airport visitors' desk." -- Max B.

Innsbruck's old town market square. (Photo by Dado Daniella/Getty Images)

It's also one for the AvGeeks. Innsbruck airport is one of the very few airports that still have a landside viewing platform. It's free, opens from around 8 a.m. every day and has unrestricted views of the runway from dawn until dusk.

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Austrian Airlines climbing out of Innsbruck. (Photo by James Oates/The Points Guy)

Hallstatt

The icing on the cake -- Hallstatt. It looks like it's been taken out of a Brothers Grimm fairytale. This beautiful town, just to the southeast of Salzburg, is not one to be missed. It's in the Salzkammergut region and a funicular railway connects it to Salzwelten, an ancient salt mine with a subterranean salt lake and to Skywalk Hallstatt viewing platform. With a population of only 780, it is said to be the inspiration behind Disney's Frozen franchise, so has seen an incredible spike in tourism in recent years. You need to book in advance if you plan on visiting by coach, as the mayor is cracking down on the amount of "foot fall" because it has "deteriorated the quality of life for locals."

Hallstatt, Austria. (Photo by Manchan/Getty Images)

Dreilandereck

It's in the name: Drei (three) Lander (countries) Eck (corner). There's a place in the south of the country where you can stand in three countries at once. Austria, Italy and Slovenia share a border. Head to a tiny place called Dreilandereck by ski lift and stand at the exact spot where the three countries meet.

"Dreilandeck, near Villach -- you can stand in three countries at once; Austria, Slovenia and Italy." -- Fiona H.

(Image courtesy of Google Maps)

From Vienna, the best way to get there is by car — you can expect a drive of around four hours.

Skiing

Austria boasts some of the best, most well-known ski resorts in Europe -- Mayerhoffen, Kitzbuhel, Saalbach-Hinterglemm and Ischgl are among the most popular. A few of you recommended some smaller, off-the-beaten-track resorts like Flachau, Kleinwastertal and Obertauern, which I can vouch for as it was the first place I ever went skiing and it was amazing.

"Visit Flachau and try to fly to Salzburg for great skiing." -- Georg S.

Photo taken in Obertauern, Austria
Making tracks through deep powder in Obertauern, Austria. (Photo by Dominic Hilgendorf/Getty Images)

Centimeter restaurants

Centimeter is a chain of restaurants in Vienna, Austria's capital. According to many of you, there is a great selection of mouth-wateringly tasty Austrian delicacies all for very reasonable prices. Want a real taste of Austria? Then make sure you visit a Centimeter.

"Centimeter restaurants in Vienna! Great food for reasonable prices!" -- homebaselhr

Germknödel

Don't worry about the pronunciation, just focus on the taste. Germknödel is a full meal in one dish. It's a savory, fluffy dumpling stuffed with a thick plum jam called Powidl. It's served piping hot, swimming in a vanilla sauce (kind of like a light custard) and finished off with ground poppy seeds and powdered sugar on top. The verdict? 10/10. I can assure you that there is nothing more satisfying after a hard day's skiing than a Germknödel. It's so good it can be served as a main dish or a dessert.

Germknodel is a fluffy yeast dough dumpling, filled with spiced plum jam and served with melted butter and a mix of poppy seeds and sugar on top.
Austria's mouthwateringly good Germknödel, (Photo by Paul Biris/Getty Images)


Featured photo by Manchan/Getty Images

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

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If you are looking to take your premium rewards to the highest level, this card is really a no brainer in our eyes. Chase's Ultimate Rewards make points easy to redeem, with a wide range of 10 airline and three hotel transfer partners and a friendly user interface. Despite the high annual fee, Chase is consistently adding new benefits to keep the card competitive in a fierce premium rewards field.

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  • Access to Chase Ultimate Rewards hotel and airline travel partners
  • Unlimited 3x points on the broad category of travel and dining
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Cons

  • Steep $550 annual fee
  • May not make sense for people that don't travel frequently
  • You must spend the $300 travel credit before earning 3x points for travel and dining
  • No automatic hotel elite status
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,200 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
Best premium travel card for value
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10xEarn 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
5xEarn 5x total points on flights through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
3xEarn 3x points on other travel and dining.
1xEarn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

    80,000 bonus points
  • Annual Fee

    $550
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

If you are looking to take your premium rewards to the highest level, this card is really a no brainer in our eyes. Chase's Ultimate Rewards make points easy to redeem, with a wide range of 10 airline and three hotel transfer partners and a friendly user interface. Despite the high annual fee, Chase is consistently adding new benefits to keep the card competitive in a fierce premium rewards field.

Pros

  • $300 annual travel credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Access to Chase Ultimate Rewards hotel and airline travel partners
  • Unlimited 3x points on the broad category of travel and dining
  • 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Broad definitions for travel and dining bonus categories

Cons

  • Steep $550 annual fee
  • May not make sense for people that don't travel frequently
  • You must spend the $300 travel credit before earning 3x points for travel and dining
  • No automatic hotel elite status
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,200 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,200 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more