My Winter Trip to Asia and Hawaii: Redeeming Barclaycard Arrival Miles To Fly Singapore to Phuket

We used Barclaycard Arrival miles to fly Singapore to Thailand

In December, I took a two week trip away from the cold! I started in New York and stopped in Hawaii for a week en route to Asia, breaking my time between two islands: Maui and Kauai. After Hawaii, it was off for a quick stop in Singapore, 5 days in Phuket and two days in Tokyo. This was my first ever trip to Asia and we had a great time! I flew Business Class most of the way, stayed at the top notch hotels Andaz Maui Wailea, Le Meridien Phuket Beach Resort and the Conrad Tokyo. Trip Report … [Read more...]

Mandarin Oriental Gift Cards Now Available With Citi ThankYou Points

Mandarin Oriental Gift Card with Citi ThankYou Points

I previously wrote about paying for hotels and incidentals with Citi ThankYou points by redeeming them for lodging certificates. The Citi ThankYou Rewards portal makes gift cards available for certain hotel chains and you can redeem your points at once cent each (that is, 10,000 points = $100). New Mandarin Oriental Gift Cards Citi ThankYou has recently added a new set of hotel gift cards to its Lodging Certificates availability: Mandarin Oriental Gift Cards. Right now, they come in … [Read more...]

Visiting Multiple European Cities On a Single United Airlines Award Ticket

Visiting four cities in Europe on a single trip

I generally travel to Europe at least once a year and I will frequently use United Airlines miles for the trip. United Airlines is a member of the Star Alliance network, which has many European partners and good coverage with award space. The United MileagePlus program also has generous stopover and open jaw rules allowing us to stretch our itinerary across multiple cities in Europe! For many of us, Europe is quite far away and, when we're there, we want to make the most of our time and see as … [Read more...]

Starwood Preferred Guest “Earn Away” Summer Promotion Until July 31, 2014

Starwood Preferred Guest summer promotio

Starwood has rolled out its summer 2014 promotion and registration is now available here (must be done by June 30). I always like to register as soon as it's available so I don't forget to do it, even if I have no Starwood stays planned; after all, there's no downside to registering! For stays between May 1 and July 31, you can earn double points for stays at Starwood properties or triple points that include a Sunday night stay. There is a list of about 100 hotels that are not participating … [Read more...]

Big Sale to the Caribbean From Lots of US Cities On American Airlines and US Airways

Photo from the beach on my parents' vacation in St. Martin

I just learned from The Flight Deal Blog that there is currently a BIG sale from many US Cities to different Caribbean islands on American Airlines and US Airways. Everyone knows how much I love the Caribbean and my parents just returned from St. Martin yesterday. They are announcing availability from New York, Dallas, Houston, Charlotte, Philadelphia and Phoenix. The Flight Deal watches sales and deals to different destinations every day all year long and are calling it the "once a year … [Read more...]

Amex SimplyCash Limited Time $250 Offer Ending April 28 (Must Be Approved By)


In February, the Amex SimplyCash card released a new offer of $250 as a sign-up bonus after spending $3,000 within 3 months of account opening. That’s a fairly compelling offer, especially for those who like cash back! The card has no annual fee and offers 5% cash back for shopping at office supply stores, where I typically buy merchant gift cards to Starbucks, Macy's, Sephora, Home Depot and so on to fully maximize my shopping rewards. Many of my friends, family members and readers already … [Read more...]

Maximize Q2 2014 Chase Freedom 5% Categories: Restaurants and Gift Cards at Lowe’s

Chase Freedom Categories

The Chase Freedom card has quarterly rotating categories that offer a bonus of 5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar up to $1500. That’s 7500 points if you maximize the promotion quarterly, or 30,000 points a year. This quarter, the categories are: Restaurants. Lowe's Home Improvement Stores. Chase Ultimate Rewards points are redeemable for cash back at 1 cent each (so 5 point per dollar = 5% cash back). Additionally, if you have one the premium Ultimate Reward cards like the … [Read more...]

Guide to Visiting South American and Easter Island with Miles Part 1: Using American Airlines Miles

Easter Island moai

I am going to be visiting Buenos Aires and Easter Island in December and booked a business class ticket with miles. I am extremely excited to be visiting one of my dream destinations. In a quick series of posts, I am going to go over the options for planning a trip to South America that includes Easter Island with miles. Although the way I booked my ticket is no longer available, there are still some good options with different miles programs. In particular, there is now a very good option with … [Read more...]