Disclosure: We get a commission for links on the blog. You don’t have to use our links, but we’re very grateful when you do. American Express, Barclaycard, Capital One, Chase, and US Bank are Million Mile Secrets advertising partners. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by our partners. Here’s our Advertiser Disclosure.
Orbitz has a new dining rewards program where you can earn 5% back in Orbitz Orbucks points for eating at certain restaurants, bars, and night clubs.
It’s free to sign-up and you can earn 15% bonus Orbitz Orbucks points on your 1st restaurant visit.
What’s the Deal?
Link: Orbitz Rewards Dining
With Orbitz Rewards Dining you’ll earn Orbitz Orbucks points when you eat at participating restaurants.
When you sign-up by December 31, 2015, you can earn 15% back in Orbitz Orbucks points after your 1st trip to 1 of the thousands of restaurants in the program.
Plus, you’ll earn 5% back in Orbitz Orbucks points each time you dine with the Orbitz Rewards Dining Program.
Here’s how to get the points:
- Sign-up for a free Orbitz Rewards Dining account
- Enter your credit card information (You won’t be charged! This is to track when you use your card.)
- Automatically earn Orbitz Orbucks points when using your card at 1 of their ~11,000 restaurants, bars, and clubs
I wouldn’t go out of my way to earn a few bonus points on a meal. But once you register your credit card, you’ll earn 5% back in Orbitz Orbucks points if you happen to eat at 1 of the over 11,000 participating locations. And it’s a nice surprise to see the extra points in your account!
What Can You Do With Orbitz Orbucks?
You can redeem Orbitz Orbucks points for hotels (NOT flights or packages) on Orbitz at $1 per Orbuck point. What I like about Orbucks points is there are no blackout dates and you can choose from tens of thousands of hotels (Starwood brands aren’t included).
So in that sense, it’s very flexible. But it’s NOT flexible like other hotel programs in that you can NOT transfer your points out to get airline miles.
How to Earn 7% Back When You Dine
You can earn 5% back in Orbitz Orbucks points on bookings made through Orbitz with the Orbitz Rewards Visa card. And 2% back on all other spending.
So if you pay for your meal with the Orbitz Rewards Visa card, you’ll earn a total of 7% back (5% back for dining + 2% for paying with the credit card).
Other card benefits include:
- 5% back on bookings through Orbitz
- 2% back on ALL purchases
- No annual fee
- No foreign transaction fee
- $50 statement credit after spending $200 in 90 days
Emily and I don’t earn a commission on this card, but we always tell you about interesting deals.
I think there are much better travel cards. But the Orbitz card could be useful for some because it’s issued from a bank other than the usual American Express, Barclays, Chase, Citi, etc.!
Should You Sign-Up for the Orbitz Rewards Dining Program?
For folks who want to book hotels that don’t have their own rewards program, this is an easy way to save money. And there’s no reason not to sign-up, because it’s free.
However, for the most part you’ll do better with Rewards Network hotel and airline dining programs when you dine and pay with cards that earn bonus points at restaurants.
Let’s say you plan to spend $1,000 on dining (most won’t spend this much!) using your Chase Sapphire Preferred card at participating restaurants. You’ll earn 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points with your card.
And because you can only register with 1 dining rewards program per card, you can choose to earn 50 Orbitz Orbucks points ($1,000 spent on dining x 5% back) or 5,000 United Airlines miles ($1,000 spent on dining X 5 United Airlines miles once you’ve dined 12+ times).
The 50 Orbitz Orbucks points are worth $50 towards your next hotel stay.
I’d rather have the 5,000 United Airlines miles. Because I can likely get more than a $50 value towards an award flight.
I’d choose to earn United Airlines miles because it will keep my United Airlines miles from expiring for another 18 months. Plus, you can use United Airlines miles for Big Travel.
But what matters is what’s valuable to you. So folks that like to book hotels outside the major chains and want the convenience of not having to worry about blackout dates, will prefer to earn Orbitz Orbucks points for dining.
You can earn 5% back in Orbitz Orbucks points for eating at Rewards Network restaurants, bars, and nightclubs with the Orbitz Rewards Dining program.
It’s nice to earn bonus points for something you’re going to do anyway! For folks who want to stay at hotels that can’t be booked with hotel points, this is a great way to save.
However, I’d rather earn airline miles and hotel points for Big Travel!
* If you liked this post, why don’t you join the 20,000+ readers who have signed-up to receive free blog posts via email (only 1 email per day!) or in an RSS reader …because then you’ll never miss another update!