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Maximizing Points (credit card/travel, etc.) Thread

Discussion in 'Off topic' started by JayH, Feb 22, 2018.

  1. JayH

    JayH Senior Member Elite Donor Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    If SoupInNYCSoupInNYC knows half as much about maximizing points as he does about curling, there will be lots of free vacations to be had by the Forums folks. All kidding aside, following up on discussions elsewhere hereon, if anyone ever has any thoughts, recommendations or deals to share, it can't hurt to aggregate amongst friends (subject to the mods not thinking the thread is too off topic).
     
    Christopher Jee and SoupInNYC like this.
  2. SoupInNYC

    SoupInNYC Senior Member Elite Donor

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    To kind of somewhat kick off discussion, there are two things to consider that aren't quite as straightforward as signing up for rewards programs and enrolling in promotions:
    1. For hotels, if you ever order food to a hotel from outside the hotel, check to see if the hotel will collect it and pay for it and then charge it to your room. More room charges = more points. Of course, it probably depends on what kind of travel you do, how long you are somewhere, etc, etc. And not all hotels will do this. But I was on a long-term project once that occasionally I would order in from outside and the hotel would pay for it, then charge my room.
      1. And related side-note, if you ever eat/drink at the hotel bar/restaurant and don't charge it to your room, shame on you
    2. Reciprocal statuses. This has become a thing in the last couple of years. Always check to see what other hotels/airlines/car rentals/etc are affiliated with others, they often offer reciprocal status if you have status with one of them.
      1. Example: I fly United when I travel so have achieved Gold status (nothing crazy). As part of that, if you register, you can then receive Gold Marriott status (I never stay at Marriott's but having this reciprocal status actually allowed me to get upgraded to the Presidential Suite at a Marriott just outside of Seattle)
      2. I almost always stay at Starwood hotels when I travel (yes, I know, soon to be fully integrated with Marriott) and they offer reciprocal Delta status. So with just flying United and staying at SPG hotels, I have statuses with 2 airlines and 2 hotel chains.
      3. Check to see what some statuses really provide, sometimes it will surprise you. Example, United does not provide access to their club lounges through an achieved status level (except for invite-only Global Services). HOWEVER, if you achieve Amtrak Select Plus status (for those Northeast Corridor riders), you are then given access to United Club lounges when you fly United (MASSIVE)
    Then I guess, always see what other ways you can earn points. I enrolled in MileagePlus Dining which allows you to earn miles when dining at participating restaurants. I've never browsed the list of participating restaurants to choose where to eat, but its always great banking a few unexpected extra miles after I eat out somewhere because they happen to participate in the program.
     
    Paul, LionNYC, gbservis and 4 others like this.
  3. LionNYC

    LionNYC Senior Member Staff Member Elite Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    r/churning
     
  4. 413Blue

    413Blue Active Member Seasoned Supporter

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    Gotta have the Chase trifecta. Sapphire reserve, freedom unlimited, and freedom. If you got a small biz, add the ink as well. With the 1.5 UR point redemption on the CSR, plus the lounge pass and global entry credit, best combo going right now!

    I had an old Capital One card which was turned into a Venture at some point. Just recently they started doing 10x miles using hotels.com which is a pretty good deal, but probably not worth the annual fee unless you exclusively use hotels.com

    I don't travel enough with any one particular hotel chain or airline so I don't bother with any of those status hunting deals, even though I could probably make out pretty good. I like simple straightforward rewards.
     
  5. 413Blue

    413Blue Active Member Seasoned Supporter

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    I still can't understand how Reddit, with it's early 90's format, gets so much traffic. Gives me a headache trying to follow something when I get linked to it.
     
    SoupInNYC likes this.
  6. SoupInNYC

    SoupInNYC Senior Member Elite Donor

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    Its really worth picking one airline and hotel chain and sticking with them. I would try to choose based on where you live and travel to most often.

    If its easier for you to get to EWR, go with United. JFK or LGA, then probably Delta or American, depending where you visit most.
     
  7. SoupInNYC

    SoupInNYC Senior Member Elite Donor

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    Agree with you here, I never go on there and try to avoid it. It hurts my eyes.
     
    Taurus likes this.
  8. Christopher Jee

    Christopher Jee Senior Member Elite Donor Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    Are you guys really shitting on Web 1.0 era design on a forum?
     
    Schwallacus likes this.
  9. FredMertz

    FredMertz Senior Member Elite Donor Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    I remember the good old days when you could order tens of thousands of dollars of Sacajawea dollars from the US Mint with free shipping, immediately deposit them in the bank and get points for them.
     
    FootyLovin likes this.
  10. Taurus

    Taurus Starting XI Elite Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    Delta:

    Did this for both my wife and I (BTW signed up my son with Delta points within the first month of his birth)

    Sign up for the AMEX Delta credit card to earn the bonus miles. They change up the promotions but you can get anywhere between 30k-50k points. If you don't want to pay the annual fee, cancel that card then sign up for the Business AMEX Delta card. That's another 30k-60k bonus points. (You don't need to own a business)

    I also cancelled the business card, then reapplied for the AMEX Delta card for more bonus points.

    Refer someone (In my case my wife) to earn more bonus points.

    This involves open and closing credit, so for those who are Credit hawks this may be an issue, but the value for me outweighs the credit inquiries.
     
    SoupInNYC likes this.
  11. Ulrich

    Ulrich Senior Member Elite Donor Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    So you can have an Amex Delta card (I do), cancel it for the business Amex (knew that), and then get the regular again with the sign-on points (didn’t know this)??? I figured you couldn’t go back to the original and were then stuck with the business, no?
     
  12. Taurus

    Taurus Starting XI Elite Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    That's what I thought also and I'm not sure if there is a time-frame before you can reapply to receive points but it worked for me. I want to say it was over 2 years before I reapplied.
     
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  13. mgarbowski

    mgarbowski Senior Member Elite Donor Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    Every source I have ever checked with claims that the rule on any AmEx card is you can get the point/miles bonus once and only once. That this worked for you is either big news or potentially a lucky glitch.
     
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  14. Taurus

    Taurus Starting XI Elite Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    Haha, I will reapply with my wife within the year and report back.
     
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  15. Mario

    Mario Regular Member Seasoned Supporter

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    Delta: Dont forget to sign up for skymiles shopping and dining.
    • dining starts you off at 3x/1$ then after 10 you get upgraded to 5x/1$'
    • shopping varies by the store
     
  16. mgarbowski

    mgarbowski Senior Member Elite Donor Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    We've covered some Amex Dalta card benefits here, but another that LionNYCLionNYC brought up in a game thread is a discount on CLEAR membership. It's worth noting that here.
    In addition, if you fly Delta somewhat regularly and even occasionally check bags, the Amex card is a very good deal.

    The basic level card has a $95 annual fee (waived the first year), but you get one free bag per trip for you plus for any companions on your reservation. So 2 round-trips with 1 checked bag each saves $100 and you're already ahead on the fee. On family vacations we usually check 2 bags, so I make the fee back with bag waivers on that single trip. You also get semi-priority boarding in Zone 1 going first after all the special categories, which almost always guarantees room in the overhead for any carry-ons.
     
  17. SoupInNYC

    SoupInNYC Senior Member Elite Donor

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    What else does CLEAR provide? Does it get you TSA precheck and/or Global Entry-like privileges?
     
  18. engine46

    engine46 Junior Member Seasoned Supporter

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    No. You just skip the ID checker line. If you have a separate Pre✔️ membership, you get to skip the ID checker at the Pre✔️ line.
     
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  19. Mario

    Mario Regular Member Seasoned Supporter

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    CLEAR membership is $79 with a skymiles membership
     
  20. LionNYC

    LionNYC Senior Member Staff Member Elite Donor Seasoned Supporter

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    And typically the ID check line is the longest wait of the security line. For Delta Medallion (Gold and above, and equivalent status for other airlines) you get a priority ID check line. But CLEAR has it's own line where you check yourself and get escorted through the ID checker.

    I've only used it once in the airport and I honestly could have just used the regular line since it wasn't more than three people. But at Yankee Stadium is was a life saver. Waiting on that long security line, then waiting to get my ticket scanned, then waiting to get a table to eat at Legends.

    Trust me, it's worth it if you fly more than 5 times a year and attend games at Yankee Stadium.

    Domestically, Precheck + CLEAR is amazinggggg
     
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