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1. Carnival Cruises to Cuba Begin May 2016
Carnival Cruise Line’s Fathom brand sets sail to Cuba starting May 1, 2016. This will be the 1st time in over 50 years that a cruise ship has sailed to Cuba. And tickets are still available for the maiden voyage!
Departures will be from Miami every other Sunday, and last 7 days. You can get to Miami from anywhere in the mainland US for 25,000 miles round-trip in coach on:
- American Airlines
- United Airlines
If you’re near Miami, you can:
- Redeem 7,500 British Airways Avios points for 1-way coach award flights under 1,150 miles on American Airlines
- Redeem 7,500 American Airlines miles for 1-way coach award flights 500 miles or less
- Redeem 10,000 United Airlines miles for 1-way coach award flights 700 miles or less
Southwest also flies to Miami. And you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest to book any available seat. Remember, a friend can fly with you for only the cost of taxes and fees with the Southwest Companion Pass!
2. China Eastern Begins Non-Stop Flights Between Chicago and Shanghai
Good news for folks who want to visit Shanghai! China Eastern has already begun 3 new non-stop flights from Chicago each week.
This is excellent news for folks with Delta miles, Starwood points, or American Express Membership Rewards points, too. Because you can use Delta miles to book award flights on China Eastern. And, you can search for and book these flights directly on Delta’s website.
If you need more Delta miles, you can transfer AMEX Membership Rewards points to Delta instantly at a 1:1 ratio. Or transfer Starwood points in 20,000 point increments to earn 5,000 bonus Delta miles!
3. Norwegian Air Will Fly From Las Vegas to Norway
Starting November 1, 2016, folks in Las Vegas can fly on discount airline Norwegian Air to Oslo, Norway. This new route joins existing flights from Las Vegas to Copenhagen and Stockholm.
I like to see new routes like this, because more competition keeps prices lower. That means more Big Travel with Small Money! But keep in mind, budget airlines like Norwegian Air charge extra for seat assignments and checked luggage.
Condor also has relatively cheap flights from Las Vegas to Europe, including non-stop tickets to Frankfurt.
And of course, you can use your miles & points to get to Europe:
- Top 5 Cheap Ways to Get to Europe Using Miles and Points!
- Use AMEX Membership Rewards to Get to Europe
- How to Fly to Europe With British Airways Avios Points
- Use Delta Miles to Get to Europe (Even From the West Coast!)
- Use United Airlines Miles to Get to Europe
- How to Fly to Europe Using the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
4. Folks in Long Beach Are Getting More JetBlue Flights to Las Vegas, Oakland, Reno, and San Francisco
Link: Barclaycard JetBlue Plus
Link: Barclaycard JetBlue
JetBlue will add new flights from Long Beach to Reno beginning August 15, 2016. They’ll also add an extra daily flight from Long Beach to Las Vegas and San Francisco starting August 15, 2016. And an additional daily flight to Oakland from August 16, 2016.
30,000 JetBlue points are worth ~$420 (30,000 JetBlue points x 1.4 cent = ~$420). And with the Barclaycard JetBlue Plus, you get 10% of your points back every time you redeem for a flight. That’s worth another ~$42 (3,000 JetBlue points X 1.4 cents per point). So the sign-up bonus is total of worth ~$462 toward JetBlue flights!
I like more options to travel because it makes your miles & points all the more valuable. Let me know if you’re excited about any of these new routes!