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Old Sep 18th 2012, 3:57 pm   #46
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
Just applied for and got a Chase Sapphire Prefered with 40,000 bonus points for spending $3k in three months. Will transfer the points to my United account. Will probably use this as my main card because of the flexibity of points transfer.
I love Ultimate Rewards points - they're my favourite thing right now! I earn quite a lot of them, so I usually transfer some to United and some to Hyatt, while keeping a strategic reserve in my UR account to transfer wherever and whenever I need them (e.g. to pay for my Amtrak sleeper to Seattle this summer).

I also have other Ultimate Rewards earning cards: the fee-free Freedom card (the current sign-up bonus is low though - 10K - so watch out for a better offer) which offers a 5x bonus on certain stores and categories each quarter, and an INK business card (50K sign-up bonus) that offers 5x on purchases at office supply stores and on cable bills. This card is (literally) worth its weight in gold.

Quote:
Originally Posted by coastieexpat View Post
Well done !

I have found this site really helpful in tracking most your rewards programmes https://awardwallet.com/

Quick question Tonrob.

We ( 2 pax ) want to travel from SFO to Kauii from Jan 9th to Jan 17th, I have looked on BA and I can go AA via LAX for 34,000 BA Avios/miles in economy plus $24.00, I am BA silver so I should have lounge access also.

Is there a better way to do this ? Perhaps Alaska ?

Cheers
I use Award Wallet too - but am currently very annoyed that Delta have joined American and Southwest in denying Award Wallet access to your account so that miles cannot be tracked.

I just saw your Hawaii question but notice you've since booked. Nice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ash UK/US View Post
tonrob, personal question, you know what your credit score is or how it has been affected?
Yes - as I mentioned before my score takes a hit when I apply but climbs back within the next couple of months (before my next round of applications).

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Originally Posted by Ash UK/US View Post
Love flyer miles, we saved $3000 on our trip to Alaska this summer!
Nice.

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Originally Posted by Scouse Express View Post
Cough, Cough - I wish to register a complaint (in my John Cleese Parrot Sketch Voice)

Travelling is spelt with 2 Ls, and not the American Version as displayed in the Title of this Thread.

Bitch Session Over!


Jim.
Sod off.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
Just because there isn't a FF scheme for traveling in your bus, there is no need to get uppity
Exactly.
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Old Sep 18th 2012, 7:06 pm   #47
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

What should I do with my 7962 remaining Avios points (BA)? They're in a different alliance to my "preferred" carrier, Delta so I don't think I can transfer them. Not many miles really but I don't want to throw them away either.
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Old Sep 18th 2012, 8:32 pm   #48
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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What should I do with my 7962 remaining Avios points (BA)? They're in a different alliance to my "preferred" carrier, Delta so I don't think I can transfer them. Not many miles really but I don't want to throw them away either.
Avios are unique in the value they provide for short-hops on AA in the US. You can easily get a ticket with that amount depending on how far you want to travel. The Points Guy did a write up here.

If you wanted to top up to travel further, you can transfer in from Chase Ultimate Rewards, AMEX Membership Rewards and Starwood Starpoints - if you have any of those (and if you haven't, they're all great programmes!)
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Old Sep 18th 2012, 9:22 pm   #49
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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Originally Posted by tonrob View Post
Avios are unique in the value they provide for short-hops on AA in the US. You can easily get a ticket with that amount depending on how far you want to travel. The Points Guy did a write up here.
Now I'm confused! If they were AAdvantage miles then I'd need 12,500 minimum (I have only 7962). But with Avios I can go two zones or 1151 miles. If I try to book LAX to Las Vegas on BA.com then it tells me there is a problem with Japan Airlines and won't go any further. Otherwise I would have tried to work out for myself the answer to this question: who would I book with - AA, BA, or OneWorld (which, IIRC, directs you to book with an airline anyway)?

[Edit] Crappy website. Right, so for that example I'd need 9000 Avios, £3.20, and a purchase of 2000 Avios for £47 for the roundtrip. Better than a kick in the teeth!

Thanks.
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Old Sep 19th 2012, 1:41 am   #50
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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Originally Posted by GeoffM View Post
Now I'm confused! If they were AAdvantage miles then I'd need 12,500 minimum (I have only 7962). But with Avios I can go two zones or 1151 miles. If I try to book LAX to Las Vegas on BA.com then it tells me there is a problem with Japan Airlines and won't go any further. Otherwise I would have tried to work out for myself the answer to this question: who would I book with - AA, BA, or OneWorld (which, IIRC, directs you to book with an airline anyway)?

[Edit] Crappy website. Right, so for that example I'd need 9000 Avios, £3.20, and a purchase of 2000 Avios for £47 for the roundtrip. Better than a kick in the teeth!

Thanks.
There are numerous ways to get around buying miles, I just signed up with BMI and got 1,000 transferable miles instantly, http://headforpoints.com/2012/08/16/...t-still-works/ Not sure if it still works ....

If you had 9,000 avios, ( and it would be pretty easy to increase your balance to that ). You could fly from LAX to LAS for $5.00. you may have to pay for the baggage though, and be a bit flexible on your dates and times.

Just ignore the Japan Airlines thing on the BA site and carry on with your search, plug in your dates , it will then say we don't fly that route and click on partners, and your on your way.

Here's a snapshot of what I came up with.
Attached Thumbnails
Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points-20120918-lax-las-..jpg  

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Old Sep 19th 2012, 3:32 am   #51
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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Originally Posted by coastieexpat View Post
There are numerous ways to get around buying miles, I just signed up with BMI and got 1,000 transferable miles instantly, http://headforpoints.com/2012/08/16/...t-still-works/ Not sure if it still works ....

If you had 9,000 avios, ( and it would be pretty easy to increase your balance to that ). You could fly from LAX to LAS for $5.00. you may have to pay for the baggage though, and be a bit flexible on your dates and times.

Just ignore the Japan Airlines thing on the BA site and carry on with your search, plug in your dates , it will then say we don't fly that route and click on partners, and your on your way.

Here's a snapshot of what I came up with.
Thanks - I persevered and got there in the end; it's just not as straightforward as other sites. The JAL thing actually obscured the real error. Crappy website, not the user, honest!

Annoying thing is, I bought some extra miles to fly over here on BA in business class so I effectively emptied my account as planned, save spare change. But I carried on using my BA AMEX card for a couple of months due to cashflow problems (okay, moving over here made me skint initially, much more than I expected even after reading all the Wikis and probably thousands of posts over the years) and so the miles went on as well.
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Old Sep 19th 2012, 2:17 pm   #52
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

To confirm what's been said in the story above (and a bit more):
  1. When using miles in the programme of Airline X, you always make your booking with Airline X, even if you want to fly on Airline Y or Airline Z who are part of the same alliance. Airline X's rules, regulations and award chart will apply - but note that the airline may have a seperate award chart for use on its own flights versus that for redeeming its miles on partner airlines.
  2. Many airlines websites can be crappy and not function correctly. Multiply this if you are trying to search for availability (or, heaven forbid, book) on a partner airline.
  3. If you're having trouble using Airline X's website to find availability on Airline Y, try doing a search on Airline Y's website as if you were using Airline Y miles (even though you are not). If you can see award space on the flights you need then this should be bookable via Airline X - but try doing so over the phone instead. There are exceptions here, e.g. Singapore airlines offers more award space on each flight to its own members, Delta members can't redeem miles to fly first class on Air France..... etc....
  4. If you book over the phone because the airline's website won't work for you and they try to hit you with an over-the-phone booking fee - dig your heels in and ask for a supervisor.
  5. Phone agents are notoriously badly trained when it comes to award redemptions, especially when using miles to book on partner airlines. I always try to use the internet to make sure I know I'm right in what I'm asking for and, if the agent is clueless or unhelpful, I'll hang up and call again. Supervisors are occasionally trained better than the agents they supervise, so you could try this route.

Edit: All of the above seems worth it when you're sipping Krug at 30,000 feet in a $10,000 seat you paid $77.50 for, while wearing posh pyjamas you get to take home with you afterwards...
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 4:18 pm   #53
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Default 4,000 United miles for signing up with Netflix

Linky.

Things to know:
  • Terms say you get 4,000 miles of you sign up using the Chase United card and 2,000 if you sign-up with any other card, but there are reports of 4,000 miles being received regardless (but also reports of 2,000 so YMMV).
  • I think that 4,000 miles is definately worth $10 (the cost of one month's membership) and 2,000 is probably worth $10 to some (if you don't get the full offer).
  • While this is a one-per household offer, there are many reports of getting multiple bonuses by varying card number and e-mail address. This Flyertalk thread discusses.

Note: I haven't done this yet myself so can't personally vouch for it, but I do trust some of the sources on Flyertalk.
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 5:38 pm   #54
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

Just got accepted on a BA Chase card with 50,000!
Better still they've actually given me a decent credit limit which will help me credit no-end.

Have switched from Continental (yes, I know they're United but my allegiance was always Continental, not United!) to BA for international travel as I've been really disappointed with them since United took over. The FF benefits aren't what they used to be and I don't like the new attitude they have. Plus the BA flights are better timed for me now for travel back to London so it all fits together quite nicely.

I have Avios points in the UK at the moment but it won't let me transfer them to BA for some reason. Are any of you registered with Avios (not through BA but in isolation) with a US address? If so, how did you do it? I think that's my sticking point.
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 5:46 pm   #55
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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Just got accepted on a BA Chase card with 50,000!
Better still they've actually given me a decent credit limit which will help me credit no-end.

Have switched from Continental (yes, I know they're United but my allegiance was always Continental, not United!) to BA for international travel as I've been really disappointed with them since United took over. The FF benefits aren't what they used to be and I don't like the new attitude they have. Plus the BA flights are better timed for me now for travel back to London so it all fits together quite nicely.

I have Avios points in the UK at the moment but it won't let me transfer them to BA for some reason. Are any of you registered with Avios (not through BA but in isolation) with a US address? If so, how did you do it? I think that's my sticking point.

You could try asking in the BA forum on Flyertalk - they'd know. I suspect that it may involve changing your Avios account address to the US or changing your BAEC account address to the UK, but I'm not sure so maybe ask there before trying anything (especially as BAEC only allows you to change your address once every 6 months, and there are reports that the miles you earn on your US-based Chase card won't post if your BAEC account doesn't have a US address).

Finally, don't forget to hammer the card to get the 2-4-1 voucher!
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 6:16 pm   #56
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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You could try asking in the BA forum on Flyertalk - they'd know. I suspect that it may involve changing your Avios account address to the US or changing your BAEC account address to the UK, but I'm not sure so maybe ask there before trying anything (especially as BAEC only allows you to change your address once every 6 months, and there are reports that the miles you earn on your US-based Chase card won't post if your BAEC account doesn't have a US address).

Finally, don't forget to hammer the card to get the 2-4-1 voucher!
So I called up Avios to find out... They don't accept non-UK addresses and the two addresses (Avios and BAEC) have to match. So I'd have to change my BAEC address and I've only just got round to changing it from the UK anyway...
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 6:25 pm   #57
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bink View Post
Just got accepted on a BA Chase card with 50,000!
Better still they've actually given me a decent credit limit which will help me credit no-end.

Have switched from Continental (yes, I know they're United but my allegiance was always Continental, not United!) to BA for international travel as I've been really disappointed with them since United took over. The FF benefits aren't what they used to be and I don't like the new attitude they have. Plus the BA flights are better timed for me now for travel back to London so it all fits together quite nicely.

I have Avios points in the UK at the moment but it won't let me transfer them to BA for some reason. Are any of you registered with Avios (not through BA but in isolation) with a US address? If so, how did you do it? I think that's my sticking point.
I had no problem transferring Avios back and forth, I opened a UK Avios account with a UK address though, but my BA account is in the U.S.
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 6:31 pm   #58
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

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I had no problem transferring Avios back and forth, I opened a UK Avios account with a UK address though, but my BA account is in the U.S.
Hmmm, when was this? The lady on the phone (who was actually very nice - makes a change!) stated that the two addresses have to match and that the system checks this. I don't know if it's a new feature or not, can only say that it didn't work for me...!
I have switched my UK bank address to be in the US, don't know if this affects it. Doesn't stop my earning Avios on it though.
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 7:25 pm   #59
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Default Re: Traveling cheaply and well using miles and points

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bink View Post
Hmmm, when was this? The lady on the phone (who was actually very nice - makes a change!) stated that the two addresses have to match and that the system checks this. I don't know if it's a new feature or not, can only say that it didn't work for me...!
I have switched my UK bank address to be in the US, don't know if this affects it. Doesn't stop my earning Avios on it though.
Back to one of my earlier comments.... sadly I find that especially when it comes to travel programmes, agents are often badly trained - I always get my answers via third parties online (e.g. expert forums and blogs) and then corroborate with the company concerned as necessary. Many times this has proved to be the right move, and I'd be thousands poorer right now if I hadn't.
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Old Sep 20th 2012, 8:49 pm   #60
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Default AMEX Delta 70K offer

I'd always shied away from this card due to the sign-up bonus being too low for me to prioritize this ahead of other cards I wanted to apply for (usually 30-35K range).

A week ago I read on Mommy Points that a 70K offer (25K first purchase, 45K after spending $5K in 6 months) was being offered on delta.com to those searching for tickets. I read all the advice and applied. No instant approval, butI got an e-mail the next day approving me and the card arrived today wth a $25K limit. Sweet!

The icing on the cake will be for me to add Mrs tonrob and Mr and Mrs tonrob senior as additional users so we can rake in an extra $100 on Small Business Saturday this year!

The card also offers a $100 statement credit if you make a Delta purchase within the first 3 months. As I'm unlikely to routinely want to fork over any money to them, I'll be on the lookout for hints on how to trigger this credit cheaply...
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