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Thread: Best Airline Rewards Credit Cards

  1. #121
    also all-in on the venture. just got 2 round trip flights.

  2. #122
    THE quintessential dwarf dartsndeacs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AnonymousDeac View Post
    Wait, what happened to your Lending Club thing?
    its prepayable, so if I can just put $$ on a 0% interest card for 14 months and use excess funds to pay down the interest bearing lending club loan, it makes sense.

  3. #123
    Quote Originally Posted by HailToTheDeacons View Post
    We got a US Airways card recently for the sign-up bonus. We're finding it challenging to redeem those miles because unlike CSP, you need enough existing points to purchase the ticket - no partial purchases allowed. There are so many blackouts and awful point redemption rates, too.

    So you're left with buying a ticket ridiculously far in advance, buying points on their site, or using the credit card to accrue more points (we had no intentions of doing the latter) so that you can use those sign-up miles.
    Like HTTD is finding, airline cards are usually not worth it unless you are earning a lot of miles other ways (flying or high spend) and/or you are an elite who gets better flight availability.

    The cards with either straight cash back or travel purchase reimbursement are usually a better deal for the casual flyer.

  4. #124
    Quote Originally Posted by DistrictDeacon View Post
    Like HTTD is finding, airline cards are usually not worth it unless you are earning a lot of miles other ways (flying or high spend) and/or you are an elite who gets better flight availability.

    The cards with either straight cash back or travel purchase reimbursement are usually a better deal for the casual flyer.
    I'll disagree with this. I flew to Colombia by myself and flew two people to Brazil on exclusively credit card miles. They were accumulated over a couple years with three cards total. The bulk came from sign-up bonuses.

  5. #125
    Quote Originally Posted by DistrictDeacon View Post
    Like HTTD is finding, airline cards are usually not worth it unless you are earning a lot of miles other ways (flying or high spend) and/or you are an elite who gets better flight availability.

    The cards with either straight cash back or travel purchase reimbursement are usually a better deal for the casual flyer.
    It also depends where you're flying. 60,000 air miles with Star Alliance will buy you a r/t flight to South America from the US. If you're flying to Colombia, that's a $300-500 value. If you're flying to Chile/Argentina/Brazil, that's $1,000+ value. That same 60,000 miles on a Capital One card is worth $600.

  6. #126
    Quote Originally Posted by HuskyDeac View Post
    It also depends where you're flying. 60,000 air miles with Star Alliance will buy you a r/t flight to South America from the US. If you're flying to Colombia, that's a $300-500 value. If you're flying to Chile/Argentina/Brazil, that's $1,000+ value. That same 60,000 miles on a Capital One card is worth $600.
    But don't forget you're often earning up to 2 miles per dollar on Capital One spend, while you're only getting 1 mile per dollar on an airline card.

  7. #127
    Quote Originally Posted by DistrictDeacon View Post
    But don't forget you're often earning up to 2 miles per dollar on Capital One spend, while you're only getting 1 mile per dollar on an airline card.
    Oh right. I was looking at the No Hassle card that gives 1.25 miles/$1.

  8. #128
    THE quintessential dwarf dartsndeacs's Avatar
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    So does anyone spend some time really like research the best place to use their points? Seems alotta people got the Chase Sapphire, and the best bonus of the card, if used right, is that you can transfer your points to a lot of places, and under the right promotion each point can be worth like 4-5 cents, making the 40,000 bonus worth up to around $2k if you use it right.

    I started researching it a bit over the weekend but there just seems like there's wayyyyy too much information out there, even on the forums where this is supposedly a "hobby"

  9. #129
    The vendor promotion stuff is exhausting to follow. I've cooled a lot on my Sapphire after the monster bonus and you get 3x bonus pts the first Friday on restaurants so that's cool I suppose but I use it for only restaurants now. I'm pumped about my Citi Hilton HHonors...free wknd at any Hilton resort let's go!

  10. #130

    Best Airline Rewards Credit Cards

    Oh yeah if you are in a whining mood you can get major perks just by complaining to customer service and saying stuff like 'I saw this offer online and I want to make sure I am eligible.' I've been dealing with a flight cancellation refund for weeks and once I got it resolved I applied my whininess to get a $100 statement credit on my Hilton card for some random online promo.

  11. #131
    THE quintessential dwarf dartsndeacs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freakadeac View Post
    The vendor promotion stuff is exhausting to follow. I've cooled a lot on my Sapphire after the monster bonus and you get 3x bonus pts the first Friday on restaurants so that's cool I suppose but I use it for only restaurants now. I'm pumped about my Citi Hilton HHonors...free wknd at any Hilton resort let's go!
    Can you elaborate? And yes, it appears the CSP is mainly about the bonus, after that, there are better options. Right now I'm rocking 4:

    1) CSP - 40,000 bonus, 2% on restaurants, 25% redemption bonus, 7% dividend. Probably cancel before a year is up.
    2) Barclays MasterCard, 2% on everything, 10% redemption bonus, 40,000 points at signup
    3) Amex Blue Cash - 6% on groceries 3% on gas.
    4) Rotating 5% categories cards

  12. #132
    Quote Originally Posted by palmab03 View Post
    Can you elaborate? And yes, it appears the CSP is mainly about the bonus, after that, there are better options. Right now I'm rocking 4:

    1) CSP - 40,000 bonus, 2% on restaurants, 25% redemption bonus, 7% dividend. Probably cancel before a year is up.
    2) Barclays MasterCard, 2% on everything, 10% redemption bonus, 40,000 points at signup
    3) Amex Blue Cash - 6% on groceries 3% on gas.
    4) Rotating 5% categories cards
    I have all of those except Barclays. I highly recommend Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve and you should def be approved.

    The main perk is two free weekend (FRI, SAT or SUN) nights at any Hilton hotel, including Waldorf Astoria, so you can fly from Cali to Hawaii and save $300/night at Grand Wailea resort with permanent Hilton GOLD STATUS (honestly I'm not sure what that entails other than slippers and breakfast). Annual fee of $95 is covered and then some, you just need to spend $2500 in 4 months to get the two night promo. I went there for my homeymoon and was a DONK for getting 2% w/ CSP when I should have used Citi Hilton.

    You also get a free night every anniversary which offsets the annual fee. No foreign transaction fees is a nice perk. Pts can be used at Hampton as well as other hotels under the Hilton name.

    You also get 10HH pts for every dollar at a Hilton hotel, 5HH pts for every dollar on flights and rental cars, and 3HH pts for everything else. 10HH pts is 5% etc.

    Google "Citi HHonors Reserve $100 statement credit" and call customer service about a promo for $100 if you spend $100 at a Hilton hotel. Should work, just be polite.

    There is an AMEX version as well (free and fee versions) but it gives you a bonus of a shitton of HHonor pts. I preferred the 2 night promo w/ Citi.

  13. #133
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    General advice when dealing with customer service I learned from working with our call center agents.

    Agents have the ability to do almost anything. And if they don't, ask to escalate the issue and the next line will. You've just got to find the right person who will do it. If you feel you've hit a wall with someone, hang up and try again.

    Tangentially related, the best way to get a problem solved nowadays is using social media. Tweet at the company, write on the company's facebook page, etc. A lot of work is being done at valuing a social media complaint and companies are finding it's quite costly.

  14. #134
    THE quintessential dwarf dartsndeacs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freakadeac View Post
    You also get 10HH pts for every dollar at a Hilton hotel, 5HH pts for every dollar on flights and rental cars, and 3HH pts for everything else. 10HH pts is 5% etc.

    Google "Citi HHonors Reserve $100 statement credit" and call customer service about a promo for $100 if you spend $100 at a Hilton hotel. Should work, just be polite.

    There is an AMEX version as well (free and fee versions) but it gives you a bonus of a shitton of HHonor pts. I preferred the 2 night promo w/ Citi.
    Whats a HH worth? I don't get the bolded statement.

  15. #135
    Im really happy with my Amex Gold Delta Skymiles card. Got a 50,000 mile bonus by spending over 2K on it in the first 3 months and then get a mile per dollar on every other dollar I spend on it. I usually have around $1500-$2500 in company expenses a month that I get repaid for so it's been great. I've built up a little over 80,000 frequent flyer miles so far and based on the Delta info a "standard" ticket round trip to the continental US is 20,000 points so i've basically built up 4 free flights in a little over a year. Plus I get a free bag and a few other perks with Delta. Been really happy with the service so far as well.

  16. #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by tau06 View Post
    Im really happy with my Amex Gold Delta Skymiles card. Got a 50,000 mile bonus by spending over 2K on it in the first 3 months and then get a mile per dollar on every other dollar I spend on it. I usually have around $1500-$2500 in company expenses a month that I get repaid for so it's been great. I've built up a little over 80,000 frequent flyer miles so far and based on the Delta info a "standard" ticket round trip to the continental US is 20,000 points so i've basically built up 4 free flights in a little over a year. Plus I get a free bag and a few other perks with Delta. Been really happy with the service so far as well.
    Just seems to me based on this thread and a google search you can do better than 1 point per dollar, especially given you're getting like a free $25k spend per year on your card. Probably worth $250-300/year in points alone on another card. The sign on bonus is nice though, but after getting it better of using a different one.

  17. #137

    Best Airline Rewards Credit Cards

    Quote Originally Posted by palmab03 View Post
    Whats a HH worth? I don't get the bolded statement.
    I used the conversion as explained here

    1 Hilton HHonor point is estimated to be worth 0.5 cents depending on how it is redeemed. They have a good chart showing the best ways to redeem. Apparently the points were devalued a year or so ago, which is one of the reasons I chose the Citi option over AMEX.

    http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/rewar...honors-points/
    Last edited by freakadeac; 04-14-2014 at 11:13 PM.

  18. #138
    Quote Originally Posted by palmab03 View Post
    Just seems to me based on this thread and a google search you can do better than 1 point per dollar, especially given you're getting like a free $25k spend per year on your card. Probably worth $250-300/year in points alone on another card. The sign on bonus is nice though, but after getting it better of using a different one.
    Yes, really two things to optimize here:

    1) Getting the most points per dollar spent, usually means picking a card that gives bonus on one of your big spending categories. For example, I typically spend ~$4000 / month each on airfare and on hotels. Figure probably another $2500 on other (rental cars, food, and parking). So, my "strategy" is built to optimize around airfare and hotels.
    2) Getting the most valuable points. I am personally not sold that a generic "travel point" is worth as much as a hotel point or airline mile. At least not when your preferred hotel and airline aren't part of the card's network of partners. By pooling points on my AA card with my earned and elite bonus miles, I'm at a balance of almost 200k on American. Well on my way to two international business class tickets to New Zealand via OneWorld partner Quantas. Figure those are ~$10k+ each (and also figure that I'd never ever buy those tickets without miles), but only 125k miles (so 12.5 cents per mile). It'd be much harder to do that if I used the Chase Sapphire since American isn't a partner. Everything other than tickets I used my SPG card for. Rates vary of course, but you'd have to try hard to get less than 1.5 cents per point and can easily get 2-3 cents per point. I don't believe they are a partner with any "travel point" cards. Already had two award nights this year and have 9 more on the books (with a balance over 80k points).

  19. #139
    Quote Originally Posted by tau06 View Post
    Im really happy with my Amex Gold Delta Skymiles card. Got a 50,000 mile bonus by spending over 2K on it in the first 3 months and then get a mile per dollar on every other dollar I spend on it. I usually have around $1500-$2500 in company expenses a month that I get repaid for so it's been great. I've built up a little over 80,000 frequent flyer miles so far and based on the Delta info a "standard" ticket round trip to the continental US is 20,000 points so i've basically built up 4 free flights in a little over a year. Plus I get a free bag and a few other perks with Delta. Been really happy with the service so far as well.
    Good luck finding any available tickets for 20k miles.

  20. #140
    My wife and I use the AMEX Blue Sky. It really simplifies things by being able to use it with just about any travel expenses. $100 credit every 7500 points, double points at restaurants. In general we earn a few free flights a year. I also have the Marriott Rewards card that I use because I stay at Marriotts a lot for work travel, but it's points program is not that great, honestly, unless you do stay at their hotels frequently.

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