Category Archives: Airlines

Does the Chase Freedom Earn Cash Back or Points?

Million Mile Secrets reader, Gina, commented:

Is the Chase Freedom a cash back card or a points card?

With the Chase Freedom and Chase Freedom Unlimited cards, you earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points, which can later be redeemed for cash back, gift cards, or travel.

On their own, the points you earn from the Freedom or Freedom Unlimited can only be redeemed for 1 cent each for cash back or towards travel.

But your points are worth much more and give you flexibility when you also have certain Chase Ultimate Rewards cards, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Chase Freedom Rewards

Combine Points From the Chase Freedom With Another Eligible Chase Ultimate Rewards Card to Book Free Nights at Fantastic Hotels Like the Andaz Maui

I’ll explain how rewards work with the Freedom and Freedom Unlimited cards.

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Look for These Upcoming Changes to Southwest’s Reservation System

Lyn writes about Southwest on her GotoTravelGal.com blog and has written a free guide to help you earn the Southwest Companion Pass step-by-step.  Emily and I believe the Southwest Companion Pass is the best deal in travel!  I’ve asked Lyn to give us an update on Southwest’s reservation system and when we can expect changes and improvements.

Lyn:   You may have noticed some things about Southwest that are different than other airlines.  Of course, their service is outstanding (which is a big reason why I love to fly Southwest!) and they offer amazing deals like the Southwest Companion Pass.  But they also schedule flights differently and you won’t find them on sites like Expedia or Google Flights.

How To Book Southwest Flights

Southwest Has Been Operating Under a Dated Reservations System. But Changes Are on the Way!

I’ll give you a quick overview of the latest intel about when more updates are coming to Southwest’s booking system.  And show you how it may affect us as their customers.

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Making Mom’s Paris Dreams Come True: Part 1 – Introduction & Planning

Emily:   I love to travel, and my mom does, too!

When I was growing up in Ohio, we could only afford road trips to local amusement parks.  But collecting miles and points has opened a world of travel neither of us thought possible!

She and I decided to go to London and Paris for a mother-daughter getaway.  We flew Business Class and stayed in 5-star hotels.  I paid a fraction of the retail cost by using airline miles and hotel points.

I’ve never traveled so long with my mom before, and at the end of the trip, I felt like I had a new best friend!  Without the miles & points hobby, I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to experience the joy of traveling with my mom.

Making Moms Paris Dreams Come True Part 1 Introduction Planning

I Had a Great Time Traveling With My Mom to Europe!

In this series, I’ll show you how you can get to Europe, too!

My mom, Connie:   Emily asked me if I would like to visit Paris. I said, “Oh yes, of course!” but did not realize that it would be a dream come true.  I was excited beyond measure, me going to Paris and with my daughter.  It just could not get any better.  Paris?  Really?  The food, the shopping, the sites to see truly was a dream come true.

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Is Using AMEX Pay With Points the Same as Paying Cash for Airfare?

Million Mile Secrets reader, Howard, emailed:

If I get the The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN and use Pay With Points to purchase Delta airfare, would Delta treat the flight as a cash purchase?

Using Pay With Points to book flights through the AMEX Membership Rewards portal is essentially the same as paying with cash.

Because you can book airfare without having to worry about blackout dates.  And you’ll earn frequent flyer miles for your flight.

This is especially useful for folks with the AMEX Business Platinum card.  Because your points are effectively worth 2 cents each for coach airfare on your selected airline through the AMEX travel portal.

AMEX Pay With Points For Airfare

Using AMEX Pay With Points Is Basically the Same as Paying Cash for Airfare

I’ll explain how using Pay With Points works.  And share the benefits of using points linked to your AMEX Business Platinum.

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5 Travel Rewards Cards for College Students

Million Mile Secrets reader, Liz, commented:

After studying abroad last semester, I’ve been bitten by the travel bug.  Although I have a very good credit score, I’m a college student and don’t spend that much, which precludes me from going for cards with sign-up bonuses that require spending $3,000 in the first 90 days.

I would like to get a card to start earning rewards for my purchases and develop a credit history.  But in keeping with the number one rule of paying off my balance each month, there doesn’t seem to be a card out there for me.

Ideally, I’m looking for a travel rewards card that offers a sign-up bonus requiring $1,000 in the first 90 days and has a waived annual fee for the first year, or none at all!  Is there a card that you’d recommend for me?

Welcome to the miles & points hobby, Liz!

I’m so glad to hear Liz is interested in earning rewards for travel.  Miles and points are one of the the best ways to travel cheaply.  They’ve given Emily and I the opportunity to visit amazing destinations around the world!

As a college student, it seems Liz has done her homework about the importance of developing a credit history and not carrying credit card balances!

Credit Cards College Students

There Are Lots of Great Rewards Credit Cards for College Students Looking to Get Started in the Miles & Points Hobby!

The good news is most banks offer credit cards with sign-up bonuses that have relatively small minimum spending requirements.  And these cards tend to waive the annual fee or have none at all.  So they’re great for students on a tight budget!

I’ll share tips for beginners in the miles & points hobby.  And 5 great rewards cards for beginners which have low minimum spending requirements!

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3 Things Everyone Should Know Before Purchasing Airfare Through an Online Travel Agency

Million Mile Secrets reader, Lynn, commented:

I purchased JetBlue airfare through Kayak’s Kiwi.com.  Will my checked baggage fees be the same as if I booked directly with the airline?

It doesn’t matter which site you use to purchase airfare.  Because the amount you’ll pay for things like checked baggage or cancellation charges is based on an airline’s published schedule of fees.

But there are other factors to consider when booking through an Online Travel Agency (OTA) like OrbitzExpedia, or Kiwi.com.

For example, depending on the airline, you might earn fewer miles on your flight if you don’t book directly.  Or you could accidentally book a “no-frills” Basic Economy fare without realizing.

Drawbacks Of Booking Airfare With An Online Travel Agency

Purchasing Airfare Through an Online Travel Agency Is Convenient. But There Are 3 Things You Should Know Before Booking This Way

I’ll explain what you should know before booking airfare through an online travel agency.

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3 AMEX Transfer Partners to Consider for Travel Flexibility

Million Mile Secrets reader, Chris, commented:

I just received the sign-up bonus from The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN.  I’m afraid AMEX might try to claw my points back.  Which airline transfer partner would you recommend transferring my points to?

As long as you follow the rules for meeting minimum spending requirements, you should NOT worry about losing sign-up bonus points.

And without travel plans, I like the flexibility of keeping points in my AMEX Membership Rewards account.  Because when you’re ready to book a trip, you’ll have the option to choose from multiple transfer partners.

The best partner depends on your travel goals.  Are you traveling within the US or internationally?  And do you want a coach or Business Class seat?

Transfer AMEX Membership Rewards Points

There Are Plenty of Ways to Use AMEX Membership Rewards Points for Flights! The Best Partner Depends on Your Travel Goals

I’ll share a few AMEX airline transfer partners that can get you flexibility for future travel.

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Enhance Your Hotel Stay and Earn 3,000 Bonus Points!

Starwood is trying to convince folks to book a suite this year by giving away bonus Starwood points!

Through December 31, 2017, you’ll earn 3,000 bonus Starwood points for booking a suite at Starwood hotels in North and Latin America.  To get the deal, use rate plan “SUITE1PT” when you book by phone or online.

Enhance Your Hotel Stay And Earn 3000 Bonus Points

Trying to Justify Booking a Starwood Hotel Suite? Here’s Some Help!

I’ll tell you everything you need to know about this deal!

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Limited Time: 20% Off JetBlue Award Seats!

Act fast if you want to save points on JetBlue award flights!

Via Running with Miles, JetBlue is having an 20% off award sale for a limited time!  You must book your travel by April 8, 2017 (the earlier of 11:59 pm Eastern Time or local time), and you must travel between May 2 and June, 7, 2017.

But there are additional restrictions, too!

JetBlue 20 Off Award Flights

JetBlue Is Helping You Reach Your Spring Travel Goals Faster

I’ll give you the details of this sale.

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It’s Back! Huge 100,000 Point Bonus With This Airline Card

If you like British Airways Avios points, the best-ever public offer on the Chase British Airways Visa Signature Card has returned!

Via Doctor of Credit, you’ll earn a total of 100,000 British Airways Avios points when you meet tiered minimum spending requirements.  But to get the full bonus, you’ll have to spend $20,000 in your first year.

That’s enough for 4 round-trip coach tickets from the West Coast to Hawaii on Alaska Airlines or American AirlinesOr, when you include the points you earn from meeting minimum spending, enough for 4 round-trip coach flights to Ireland from 6 US cities on Aer Lingus.

British Airways 100000 Point Offer

Use the 100,000 Point Sign-Up Bonus From the Chase British Airways Card to Visit Dublin

I’ll share the details!

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