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.

I love answering questions from my readers and want you to travel for less!

Please leave a comment below with any requests, travel anecdotes, or topics which you’d like me to cover on the blog.

Or tweet me @MilMileSecrets for a quicker response!

I’d be delighted to make your travel dreams a reality!

Daraius Dubash and Emily Jablon (formerly married) have earned and redeemed millions of airline miles and hotel points – most of which they acquired for free and without flying in airplanes or staying in hotels.

Daraius Dubash - Million Miles Secrets

At Restaurant Sant Pau Near Barcelona, Spain.  Daraius & Emily Used Miles to Travel for Free on Swiss Air to Europe

Million Mile Secrets shows time-starved folks how, they too, can acquire airline miles and hotel points, and travel very comfortably to see the world, for a fraction of what they would otherwise pay for such travels.

They believe everyone can use airline and hotel loyalty points to travel for free – whether it is a trip in First Class to Thailand or a family visit to grandma in Florida.

By reading Million Mile Secrets you will learn their secrets to fly for much less,  stay in wonderful hotels for much less, and rent cars for much less than retail price.

They have visited over 30 countries in 6 out of 7 continents, and have flown on International First Class (where tickets costs about $20,000 per ticket) to Europe, Asia, and the US, many times for virtually no money.  They use their expertise and specialized tools to help their blog readers and their families travel and experience the world like they never thought possible.

Emily in Lake Como, Italy

Emily Used her Miles to Visit Lake Como, Italy


As a former Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Daraius roamed the world, as an auditor for a Fortune 500 company, to ensure that rules, regulations, and policies were enforced.  He also prepared many tax returns as a volunteer with the AARP.

Daraius now uses his ability to interpret complicated airline rules and marketing promotions – honed from mastering complex accounting rules – to make the most of airline, hotel, and rental car promotions.

But Daraius believes using your miles and points to travel shouldn’t require a degree in Accounting!  That’s why they started Million Mile Secrets.  They present the information in a helpful way that anyone can understand.

Emily was a Project Manager for General Dynamics (a Fortune 100 Company) and completed her MBA in 2014. She has worked in the Operations divisions of 2 publicly traded companies.

Busy people don’t have time to study the constantly changing deals, strategies, and requirements.  That’s why Million Mile Secrets only has the best offers and most relevant news, including their easy-to-follow analysis that has earned the trust of over 16,000 loyal readers.

Daraius has worked in the Finance, Auditing & Global Marketing divisions of Fortune 500 companies.  He has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a Master’s in Engineering Management from the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University.

News outlets such as The New York Times, CNN, and Business Insider call upon Daraius and Emily for their expertise at Big Travel with Small Money.

You Dont Have To Pay To Upgrade To An Overwater Bungalow In Bora Bora

Miles and Points Can Get you an Overwater Villa at the InterContinental Thalasso Bora Bora

In his spare time, Daraius loves to plan his future travels and plot how to increase their stash of miles and points (currently over 3 million).  He loves listening to classical music, reading non-fiction (history and biography), eating good ethnic food, and taking long walks.

Emily loves to Latin dance, listen to music, spend time with friends, and help plan future trips.

Million Mile Secrets is part of the BankRate family!

Editorial Disclaimer: Neither the responses below nor the editorial content on this page are provided or commissioned by the bank advertisers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertisers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the bank advertisers. It is not the bank advertisers’ responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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7,933 responses to “Contact

  1. Hi. I am just getting started with Credit Cards and I had a question about transferring balances. When opening a new card they sometimes reward you for transferring a balance. From what account do you use to transfer? Can you transfer from one C.C. to another for this to work?

  2. Darius, I am hoping your experience will help with this.

    I applied for a BOA business credit card with my SSN. Now they want an IRS issued document with my business TIN on it. What do I send them? Tax transcripts? tax returns? I assume when you truly apply for a TIN, you get a paper from the IRS that you can send them. So am I out of luck?


    • @cory – You’re welcome! You can do 1 stopover on a return US Air award. The award chart is different, but US Air is usually better for intra-Asia flights, flights from the US to Asia in business class for only 90K miles and to Africa.

      @Ashley – I don’t suggest using credit card balance transfers because you pay interest from the day you make the transfer at a high rate which is almost never worth the miles you earn.

      @john – If you are a sole proprietor, your ssn is your tin. You could write a note and let them know that as a sole proprietor your ssn is your TIN and you don’t have a separate number. You can also include your schedule C if you filed taxes for your sole proprietorship business.

  3. Is there a way to get credit card for my wife who is n dependent visa and just have ITIN and no SSN ?

  4. Just received my Chase Ink card and would like to know do you still receive 5X pts per $1 spent at Office Max and Staples?

  5. Darius can Chase Priority Club points be converted to Chase Ultimate Rewards points? Or vice versa?

  6. Can I get the Thank You Preferred and the Thank You Premier cards at the same time? Use the Two Browser trick?

    Also, why are you suggesting that people wait to hear from CC on approvals rather than calling the reconsideration lines right away?

    • @KG – Possibly, but she won’t get a miles and points card without a credit history. So perhaps best to get a card for folks with limited credit before getting the miles and points cards. would be a better resource for that.

      @Unrea – You still get 5X points for spending at office supply stores and for telecom.

      @Kevin – You can convert Chase UR points to Priority Club points, but it is almost always a bad deal. Instead, you could use the cash and points trick to get the points at 0.7 cents per point and then get statement credits using UR points. You can’t convert Priority Club points to Chase points, though.

      @straightahead – You used to be able to, but am unsure with the recent changes. I suspect it will still work. Calling the reconsideration line for Citi seems to lead to a denial on the 2nd card.

  7. I have applied for a couple of Hilton cards. When I recieved the first one I didn’t see a number so signed up for an acct. The second one they sent me has an acct #, can I combine the two? Also, one of the cards for for the two free weekend nights, will I receive this right away or after the spend requirements?

  8. I am getting close to my anniversary with a Delta CC I took out. I want to cancel it to avoid the yearly fee but just want to be sure my miles are safe with me canceling the CC?

  9. Hello, I am planning a trip to France and want to fly first class. Which airline should I collect miles/points for to attain this? It will be 2 people flying. Thanks! Look forward to your response.

  10. I have a question that I haven’t found an answer to. My Citi ThankYou Premier card is about to come up for renewal and I have about 14,000 points left in the account.

    If I book a flight now and then cancel my card, will I still have the flight even if it is in a few months? Is there any way that Citi can cancel my flight that is booked with ThankYou points once I book it, even if I cancel the card?

    It would seem that they can’t but I haven’t found any definitive answer in either direction.

    Thank you.

  11. Hi- Can you post a link to

    you could use the cash and points trick to get the points at 0.7 cents per point and then get statement credits using UR points


  12. Per the advice of a previous post, I’ve been making Amazon purchases through Hawaiian Airlines’ website. Today, the following message was posted:

    *As of 1/23/13 miles are no longer earned for purchases on every category. Members can earn miles when purchasing items from the categories listed above only. Also note, miles can no longer be earned for Amazon transactions through the Hawaiian Airlines MileFinder.

    The listed categories are MYHABIT, Shoes, and Amazon Local. Seeing as that option is now so limited, what suggestions do you or your readers have for earining points or miles for Amazon purchases?

    • @Juli – You can call Citi and find out which number the assigned to the 1st card. You can then call Hilton to merge the 2 accounts. With the Citi Reserve, you get the free weekend night certificates after you complete the minimum spending requirements. You don’t lose the miles which you’ve already earned and are in your Delta account.

      – You shouldn’t lose the flight if you cancel the card after you’ve made the redemption.

      @wagger – Ooops. Here you go…

      @Andrew R
      – I’ll write more later, but you can always use the Ink Plus and Ink Bold to buy Amazon gift cards from office supply stores (5X bonus) and load to your Amazon account, or use a card which gives a bonus for shopping at a grocery store (3X bonus) and load it to your Amazon account.

      – I don’t have a post, but you can apply for a 2nd card after ~95 days to separate your business expenses. And then evaluate whether you need the personal version etc.

  13. Regarding churning a HawaiianAirlines card…

    Is there a method to doing it?

    If I apply for one HA card, get the 35k miles… should I cancel (after 95’ish days) and then reapply? Should I apply for another card while I have the card? How do I explain to someone on the phone (if required) why I cancelled and am then reapplying?

    Thanks a ton! If there’s a link to a post, that’d be great! I just can’t find one.

  14. Hi Dariaus, I think you missed my post earlier. I’m thinking of flying to France and have AA miles and US Airways miles. What airline would you advise I pick for flying first class that won’t charge exorbitant surcharge fees? I am of course open to applying for new credit cards. Thanks!

    • @Eroica – Sorry about that! It is 125K miles in First Class roundtrip to Europe in 1st Class. However, American Airlines partners with British Aiways which charges fuel surcharges ~$400 per trans-atlantic segment and US Air doesn’t let you redeem for Lufthansa First Class or have 1-way awards. I’d try to combine AA and United miles (you can transfer miles from the Chase Sapphire Preferred/Ink Bold/Plus etc.) to get there. If you don’t want to pay any surcharges, United miles may be better. But I think it is worth it to pay the surcharges on British Airways to travel to Europe.

  15. Dariaus,

    If i were to use the billpay functionality of bluebird to make a payment towards my credit card account(say citi or chase: they are both registered payees) Do I have to put down entire account number (i.e. my credit card number) or do i put just last few digits like 4 or 6? Thank you!

  16. Hi Dariaus,
    Looking to get into the points game with a very specific goal in mind. For me and my husband to be able to fly business class into Berlin (from there we plan on taking the train to prague, vienna and back). I don’t have many miles built up with any airline but I do have about 10,000 already with United. Should I keep trying to build those points with United through credit cards, etc.? Or would another airline’s miles be better for a New York to Berlin trip?

  17. Hi Darius,

    I am a big fan!! Started living the fun and crazy world of miles and points about 4 months ago. i am about to complete the 100K AA miles and was wondering how to best use them for travel to India in economy (with my wife). I saw that you explained how to redeem AA miles in business to travel to India, but is there any such way for cheap travel in economy? I am hoping to sign up for the business card which will hopefully give me another 50K miles soon.

    thanks in advance for your advice.

  18. I am new to this blog and I was wondering which credit cards were “churnable”. For example, which ones could you close and reapply for and what are the rules about doing so? I saw how some of the cards you referenced that the sign up bonus could only be received once.

    • @SigmaStar – I believe you have to enter the full 15 or 16 digit credit car number as the account number to ensure the payment is credited. I’d do a small test transaction to see that it works before making a larger payment.

      @Nina – American Airlines partners with Air Berlin and they have a non-stop flight to Berlin from JFK. You can also fly on American Airline to the UK and then connect to Berlin on British Airways to Berlin or elsewhere. Alternatively, you could fly using United or US Air miles to Europe in Business Class for 100K miles round trip per person. Do note that you will pay ~$400 in fuel surcharges for redeeming American Airlines miles on British Airways trans-atlantic flights. Both American Airlines and United offer 1 way awards for 50K miles, so mixing and matching United and American Airlines could be a way to get there, though ideally Air Berlin via American Airlines may be more convenient if you can find award seats for the dates you want to travel.

      You can also consider flying into Berlin and then flying out of one of the other cities instead of coming back to Berlin.

      @Frank – Thanks for reading! Using AA miles for travel to India in coach isn’t usually the best value because you pay fuel surcharge (~$400) for the British Airways flight from London to India. But you may be able to save the fuel surcharges by flying a different airline to India, but there aren’t many other options. See this post for details.

      @Lesli – This post may help and please email me if you have a question on a specific card!

  19. Hi Dariaus,

    Thanks for the quick reply! I think jet airways is a good option to India from London to save on fuel surcharges. How much does the economy redemption cost from US to India on AA?

    thanks again.

  20. Hey Darius, I have been out of the country and missed out on applying for the Chase Freedom Card and getting a Chase Checking account therefor being unable to enroll in the Chase Exclusives program (10%/10Points). However, now that I am back I was wondering if you know any one who has been able to get enrolled into that program still? Maybe via SM?
    I am applying for the Chase Freedom Visa this weekend, and am going to open a Chase Checking account today. Any chance I will be able to still get in on it? Any words of advice on what to say in an SM? Or can someone at the Bank help me enroll?
    I also have the option of getting my name added on as a Co-owner of the account of a family member’s long time standing Checking account. I can do that and after applying for the Freedom card see if I can get in? Will those increase my chances since it’s an old account and hence I may be “grandfathered”?
    Hope to hear back from you soon! Thanks!

  21. Hi Daraius, I’m planning an app-o-rama based on acquiring AA miles and HHonors points for a trip to the Maldives. Will definitely use your links where applicable for all your help, but wanted to ask if these cards look right or if there’s any other good ways to get those miles/points that I’m missing? I might have to do 2 app-o-rama’s too it looks like.

    AoR #1
    Citi HHonors Reserve for 2 free nights & gold
    Citi AA card (looks like 2bm is dead so only 50k miles)
    BofA Hawaiian (convert to HH)
    BoH Hawaiian (convert to HH)
    Amex SPG (convert to AA)
    Maybe Amex Surpass for more HH?

    AoR #2
    AA Citi Biz
    Amex SPG Biz
    Other Citi Hilton?

    I’m still going to be short of AA miles so maybe I need to use the AA for departure flights and then rack up UA miles for return flights? Any input much appreciated, thanks!

  22. Hey Daraius,

    I have a question (maybe a good topic for a post) for you. What ways could you recommend for expats to meet minimum spend requirements. I have a feeling many of your members are US Citizens living abroad (or traveling so frequently they might as well be). I currently live in China so outside of specific no forex fee cards I struggle to think of ways to meet minimum spends. I want to do a churn soon but without access to things like the mint (RIP) and bluebird etc. I am unsure about how to do this (I don’t have much day to day CC spend). Are there any purely online ways to meet spend requirements? I do have other CC bills and Student loans to pay back in the US. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Keep up the good work!
    -Expat Sean

  23. Hey Daraius – Since you first turned me to WilliamPaid, I received a message yesterday from WilliamPaid (not sure if targeted):

    “Hi Michael,

    At WilliamPaid, we’re always looking for new ways to make your rent payment work harder for you. That’s why we’re pleased to announce an exciting new partnership with our friends at Delta Airlines. Whenever you pay your rent with any credit card, you’ll earn up to 500 extra SkyMiles every month.

    Add your Delta SkyMiles number to your account and start racking up the miles”

    Ends up being 1 mile per $1 spent on rent with a CC, up to 500 total.

  24. Maybe this has been addressed before, not sure. Thanks for your time regardless, Daraius.
    Situation (Hawaiian Airlines Business Card through BofA):
    1. 35,000 mile bonus posted to my account 3 weeks after meeting promotion.
    Fantastic. No problem there.
    2. 35,000 mile bonus has not posted to my wife’s account even though she met promotion sooner than I. Been 7 weeks now.
    Terms and Conditions say points will be posted 4-6 weeks after meeting promotion.
    Question: Who currently has “ownership” of the points that my wife is entitled to, BofA or HA? Did BofA purchase those points from HA? Do we contact BofA? Are they responsible for “releasing” those points to her HA account? – or – would BofA say we need to contact HA because it is their miles program. I want to go to the right source, the one who has authority to release the points. I’ve got a feeling with my luck I’ll contact BofA who will say no, you must contact HA who will say no, you have to contact BofA who will say no,……

    • @Mike – Thanks! I got the same email as well!

      @KC – Does the Hawaiian Air number on your wife’s card match her Hawaiian Air number? If so, you should call BofA and ask them to investigate why the bonus hasn’t posted since you met the terms. If the Hawaiian Air number is different, you should call Hawaiian air to merge the account with her existing account.

      @John – I don’t believe so.

      – Glad it worked out and thanks for sharing!

  25. Can you use points for pet travel?

  26. @KC This happened to we as well. I waited for 9 weeks and nothing has posted. What I did was called BofA and had the agent contact Hawaiian Airlines (since they are more familiar with the terms of the bonus) while listening to their conversation. Once the BofA agent confirmed that I met the minimum required spent to the HA rep., the HA rep. suggested to make a note on my BofA account to forward it to them.

    I took the incident number just incase I needed to follow this up but the missing miles posted within 5-7 working days later. Good luck!

  27. Hi Daraius,

    Do you know if the auto rental coverage included with the Sapphire Preferred extends to spouses driving as well? I want to book the car using my wife’s card, but more than likely I would be driving.

    Alternatively, do you know if the US Bank Flexperks card includes rental car coverage? I don’t see it in the T&C online.


  28. I took your advice and signed up for the American Airlines VISA (50,000 miles) and American Airlines AMEX (50,000 miles). I had some purchases I needed to make so I was able to meet my spending limit in 2 weeks and have paid them off. How long should I expect it to take for miles to post to my American Airlines account? I’m hoping to go to Europe in May. Any hope?

  29. And a follow up question. Looking at potential flights on the American Airlines website I’m becoming somewhat discourage. 100,000 miles is not enough for first class St. Louis to Barcelona. It does cover economy flights – which I’m fine with – but it is requiring ridiculous connections (i.e. transfer from JFK to LaGuardia in 90 minutes time OR 9 hour layovers in various cities). Any advice?

  30. @Dariaus regarding my last post. Wife’s HA miles # is not printed on the card, front or back. They did send us her HA miles # in the enclosures that came with the card. So I’ve been using that miles # to check. I’ll get in contact with them. Maybe they did post the miles to some other miles #, why who knows. Thanks.

  31. Hey Daraius!

    I just discovered your site (and credit card churning), but I’m excited to give it a spin and try to see more of the world for cheap. Thanks so much for these amazing resources!

    But I do have one question. I’m a recent college grad with no real credit history. Both of my college loans are paid every month on time, but I’ve never had a credit card and so my credit score is only 680 (I’m assuming due to my “thin” file). I don’t want to apply for a Chase Sapphire Preferred or Starwoods American Express if I’m just going to get turned down. Is there a card you recommend I start with to build up a stronger credit score (or another strategy)? Thanks!


  32. I have used the gift cards from amex and visa to purchase dinner but when I checked the balance a few weeks later it didn’t show the tip to be added on. I feel the waitress is now being stiffed because they couldn’t add the tip on like a normal charge card. I refuse to use these at restaurants unless you put down a cash tip. Has anyone else had this problem, I feel terrible for the waiters.

    Read more:
    Follow us: @thepointsguy on Twitter | thepointsguy on Facebook

  33. I understand that a credit card can only be registered for one bonus (ie shopping) portal. can that same card be registerred for both shopping and dining?

  34. Hi Daraius, I just achieved my SW companion pass today (the link appeared on the website so I signed up my companion right away). I’ve got a few questions about the CP:
    1. How do I book a flight with my companion? I don’t see any option to add them when I’m booking the flight. Do I go back after I’ve completed the purchase and add them at that point? Just seems kind of strange that it isn’t during the initial purchase since it seems like there would be a risk of buying the ticket and then discovering the flight is full when I go to add the companion afterwards.

    2. When you add your companion to the ticket do they get the same class of ticket as you have? For instance, if I buy the Business Select fare will they also get a Business Select ticket and be able to board early, get a free drink, etc.?


  35. How do I book flight on southwest airlines with my wife getting a discount or free flight. I applied for the package of SW airlines in Dec and Have met the $ requirement?

    • @Matt – I don’t have the terns of the US Bank card, so I’m not sure about their rental coverage. With the Sapphire, I believe you have to be the cardholder (or an authorized driver on the cardholder’s rental agreement) to get the insurance coverage.

      @Scott Rhodes – You should get the miles once the statement in which you complete the minimum spending closes, provided you made the spending 5 to 8 days before the statement close date. You can’t search for all flights on the AA website. Iberia flies to Spain, but you can’t search for that online. See this series of posts on how to search for award seats.

      @Kent C – If they sent you a HA account number, that is likely the account in which the miles are going, but it doesn’t hurt to check. If there are still no miles, you may want to have BOA investigate.

      @Nick – Welcome! You’re better off not applying for the Sapphire Preferred and getting a starter credit card and then applying for a miles and points card. See this post for more info. The Chase Freedom may work or the Citi Forward card.

      @Rick – I’ve never had an issue putting a tip on my credit card, but ymmv.

      @H Hendricks
      – Which shopping portal do you have in mind? You can register the same card for the shopping and dining program of an airline.

      @Josh – I’ll post on this soon, but you have to book your flight 1st and then when you return to the reservation online, you’ll see a link to add your companion. Or you can book the seat and then call to add your companion. Unfortunately, they don’t get the same perks as you and even have to board separately (if you have a business select ticket).

      Paul Gally – If you’re referring to adding a companion, see my comment above to Josh!

  36. Sadly, it appears true. My local Office Depot has many empty slots where Visa gift cards used to hang. No! My wife and I each just got two Ink cards. Yes, the minimum spend can be met elsewhere, but oh that 5X bonus! Does anyone have any smart ideas for using Ink cards for similar (spendable) purchases at OD?

  37. Hi Darius, I see that Chase slate is offering a no fee balance transfer. I carry no balances on any card, but wondering if there are innovative ways to use that for people who carry no balances.

  38. Hey Darius. I’d like some help with a specific trip. I’d like to book an award ticket to mainland China in the summer with a short stopover in Hong Kong. When would be the best time to book a flight? When are award tickets released? Also, which airlines would be good for this kind of itinerary? Is it possible to get on a flight with the nicer ones like Air Singapore or Cathay? Sorry about the many question! Thanks in advance!

  39. Hi Daraius –

    Happy New Year; hope all’s well!

    Any ideas/info re: whether/how/when the 2-browser trick for AA/Citi might change when/if the AA merger with USAir goes through???

    Thanks a bunch!

    – Cory

  40. Hi Daraius: Do you know how long does it take to get the AAdvantage bonus miles after I’ve spent 2,500 on the card? Is it a day or two after the closing statement date or it takes weeks? I remember with AmEx delta it was very very quick…i think I got the credit even before the statement closing date as soon as i hit the spending requirement.
    I just need to book a ticket soon and I was wondering if I’d be able to use the miles.
    Cheers and thanks for the great work!

    • @JimmyUh – You can try at Office Max or buy gift cards for stores which you’d elsewhere to get the 5X bonus.

      @PB – You’re better off not carrying a balance and interest rates are low, so there isn’t a good place to park the money.

      @cory – Can you email me with your trip details and the miles you have?

      @Cory – I replied to your email with the same question in the morning.

      – It should be a few days after the statement in which you completed the minimum spending closed (if you completed the spending with 5 to 8 days before).

  41. Hi Darius. Will do. E-mail headed your way.

  42. Hey Daraius,
    Regarding the UAL MP Explorer Card, just wanted to make sure the 1 free checked bag policy hasn’t changed. I previously would get 1 free bag for being a cardholder, regardless of how the ticket was paid for. Today I got an email from Chase stating that to take advantage of this benefit, the primary cardmember must purchase their tickets with their Explorer Card. Is this an empty threat?

    • @Dave G – I don’t know how it will work out in practise, but about 2 weeks ago we weren’t charged for a bag despite NOT using the card to book the flight. Can you please forward me the email (daraius “at” millionmilesecrets dot com). Thanks!

  43. Hi Daraius: love your blog. I have over 300,000 Marriott Rewards points and ff accounts with American, United, Delta, Jet Blue and SW. The ff account I have with the most points is American. We want to fly from the US to either Venice or Rome later this summer. Any suggestions about which cc account I should sign up for to get the most bang for my buck since I will want to transfer the Marriott points into an account (I don’t think I can transfer Marriott points to American).

  44. Is there a summary/chart somewhere of what each card gives on it’s anniversary? Trying to decide whether to keep or cancel many cards with upcoming annual fees. Thanks!

    • @Cyndic – Thanks for reading! IF you have American Airlines miles, perhaps you can use them to fly to Europe instead of transferring your Marriott points?

      @Zipline – Unfortunately, I don’t have a chart summary. But thanks for the suggestion!

  45. I have a question about free weekend nights certificates from Citi Hilton Reserve card. I applied two cards at the same time, and met the spending threshold at about same time. There is two weeks difference in bill date for those two cards. but I only got two certificates from Hilton, and I don’t know which card gave me the certificate. It has been two months since I received last two certificate, so I’m sure there is a problem with my other two. What should I do now? thanks

  46. Does anyone have a thumbnail sketch of what each card offers on its anniversary? I am very interested to find out if the fee is worth paying for Sapphire, all Southwest cards, SPG, Hyatt, Marriott, Citi AA personal, Citi AA biz, Ink cards, Amex Hilton Honors, US Air MC, United MilagePlus, Airtran and Amex Gold biz. I saw an excellent chart of this somewhere but can’t find it now. Thanks!!

  47. I have the Citi AA Visa Business card for 9 months now and got the 50k miles bonus.

    I found another Citi AA business card in mastercard on citi website card called
    CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® World MasterCard with 30k bonus miles offer.
    Can I apply for this one and get the 30k bonus or I won’t get it?
    Should I cancel my AA Visa BIZ first?

  48. Hi Daraius,

    Sometime ago we were able to sign up with Netflix and get bonuses for UA and AA. Apparently Netflix stopped the program. Then last month I was able to to still find signing up with Netflix and get Hawaiian Airlines 2000 miles bonus. Now even that seems to be gone.

    Is there any other sign up bonus from Netflix at all?

    • @Jimmy – Send a secure message to Citi to investigate and they should be able to resolve it.

      @zipline – I don’t have a list, but it could be worthwhile for a future post!

      @jim – You may be able to get the bonus again if you cancel your existing Citi Business card. Of course, your miles may vary.

      @best_daddy – I don’t know of any other Netflix offer.

  49. Just for fun I thought I let you know something funny. The United Mileage Plus card is targeted 50k offer I found out how anyone can get it 😉

    In the application page it says

    explorer_30kafw change that to explorer_50kafw 😉

  50. Have you heard any chatter about the airlines possibly moving from a milage flown based award system to a points based system on the revenue you spend with the airline?

  51. Citi Forward link for 30k promo doesn’t seem to be currently

    • @Dae – Thanks, though it doesn’t always work for everyone. I wrote about it last year and it used to work then too!

      @Max – Yes, and I expect it to happen. But I don’t think it will be completely revenue based, but more of a hybrid.

      – Thanks! I’ll look for another link.

  52. Can one do both “versions” (issuers) of the Hawaiian Airlines card in the same churn?


  53. Dear MMS,

    My bank allows me to fund a new checking account with a credit card for up to a few thousands. Can I use a Citibank credit card? Will there be fee?


  54. Hi Daraius,
    Thanks for what you do! I am interested to know how to book premium economy seats DFW-BKK. I am traveling with kids and want to be closer to them (just need a little more room than coach).

  55. Daraius:

    Thanks for taking the time to answer ALL of your inquiries!
    Your knowledge of the miles & points game is terrific.
    Anyway, enough of that! I am still working thru the best use of Amazon payments. Is there a good link that explains how to use it to generate spend and transfer the cash back to your bank account. Can you use gift cards to fund the account & then transfer the balance to your bank account?

  56. Thanks for the trick on how to check Cathay Pacific award availability using BA’s web site. As a newbie to the million miles lifestyle I want to make sure I understand the best way to plan an upcoming trip. I am getting married in Taiwan this fall and would like to fly my parents over First Class from ORD. They will each sign up for the AAdvantage credit card that gives them 50,000 miles each (x2 for the 2 browser trick) and will have no problem meeting the spending requirements. That should give them a total of 400,000 miles. I see AA charges 62.5k miles for First Class ticket from ORD>HKG>TPE. I believe that is just one-way correct? So for round-trip they will actually need to use 250k miles (62.5 x each way x 2 ppl)? Is there a better/more mile efficient way? Thanks for the clarity. Keep up the informative posts.

  57. Daraius,
    Is there an unspoken rule about how many applications you can send to Bank of America each month? I am thinking about applying for the Hawaiian Airlines personal card as well as the business card to get 70k and then I was thinking about applying for the Bank of Hawaii card for another 35k. Does this sound like a bad idea? I do not see anything on your blog about this other than the two personal cards. Thanks

  58. Daraius,
    I applied for the Chase BA card on 2/2/13 and got the “we’ll let you know in 30 days” response. My recent Chase activity is as follows:
    1/13/13 – Canceled United Explorer card and transferred credit line to Priority Club card
    11/15/12 – Applied for and got Priority Club card
    8/1/12 – Applied for and got Sapphire Preferred card
    Also, I’ve had the card for years.

    I really want the BA card, would it be better for me to call the reconsideration line now or wait for a letter?

  59. Hello,
    How do I search for Delta awards availability to london from the USA? Does expert flyer show these?

  60. Can you advise a good way to get the AMEX for miles signing bonus. We spend a lot at Costco and have their card for the % cash, but, it would seem spreading this annual 15000 spend on other bonus offers would make more sense. Trouble is they only take AMEX. PLEASE help a beginner out!


    ps prefer travel miles to nice hotels… I B&B… 😉

    • @Mark – Folks have done it, but you may need to call to get approved and your experience could be different from others.

      @jrey – Citi likely will charge a cash advance for it (they usually are quite good at that type of think, though sometimes they don’t), so best to try with a small amount first.

      @Tara – You can’t book premium economy using US Airline miles, but you may be able to book either a coach award and pay cash for the “economy plus” type seats if the airline offers it (usually just a few inches extra). Or redeem extra miles for a business class award.

      @Marshall – Thanks for reading! Here’s a link to Amazon payments and gift cards which may help.

      – Thanks for reading! Unfortunately, the ability to get 2 Citi personal cards at the same time may be over for now. But you may be able to get 1 personal and 1 business card instead. If your parents each apply for the cards it is 100K per person or 200K in total. It is 67.5K American Airlines miles for a 1 way from the US

      You could fly back in business instead of first or use United miles (there is a 55K United card and the Sapphire Preferred/Ink Bold/Plus etc. to earn more United miles) if you’re looking for a different way back.

      @Lesli – I’ve never tried more than 2 at a time with Bank of America, so I don’t know if they will approve you for 3. I know that you will likely have to call, so you may be able to get 3 if you’re adventurous and want to try it out.

      @Paul S.
      – I usually call to get approved instead of waiting for the letter.

      @Joe – You can search on, but they often will show inflated prices so try searching for 1-way at a time and then piecing it together.

      -Do you have access to Vanilla Reloads and Bluebird? If so, you could get any card, buy Vanilla Reload and put it on your Bluebird and then use your Bluebird (which is an AMEX card) at Costco.

      Or you can buy an American Express gift card with a Visa and MasterCard and then use the AMEX gift card at Costco. If you’re willing to go that route the Chase United card, Southwest card, Sapphire Preferred, Ink Bold/Plus could all be good cards depending on your goals.

      Alternatively, you could consider the Citi American Airlines card (AMEX version). There is an American Express Delta card, but it doesn’t have a good sign-on bonus.

  61. It would technically be 2 bank of america cards and one bank of hawaii cards….or is bank of hawaii and america the same thing?

  62. I just got the Chase United Mileage Plus Explorer card and got the $50K miles plus $5K miles for my wife’s card. Great. But when you read the fine print you see the following:

    “Miles Don’t Expire:
    Your miles will not expire as long as there is activity on your credit card account, including paying your annual membership fee, and the credit card account is open and not in default. Upon cancellation of your credit card account your miles will expire according to the MileagePlus program rules.”

    How do you keep flipping cards to get the sign up bonus when you have the threat of losing your miles on the existing card please? Thanks.

  63. Awesome site, just getting started with this. Was going to do the two-browser trick for AA points (Citi AMEX/Visa), but the only bonus I could find was at 30k. Is 50k still available? Thanks!

    • @Lesli – The Bank of Hawaii cards are issued by FIA card services which is a division of Bank of America.

      @John in Texas
      – As long as you have the card, the miles won’t expire. Once you cancel the card, you have to have som activity within 18 months to keep your miles active. See this post for more details.

      @Nate – The 50K links in the Hot Deals tab still works. However, the ability to get 2 Citi American Airlines personal cards is virtually over for now, unfortunately.

  64. I filled out the application for the no fee 35.000 mile US card (and saw the terms page, took screen shot of those & saved). Submitted application and it said I would have to wait for approval…and that I could check the application status web page for them, which I did. But then and for the last day+ all I ever see is this message”CHECK APPLICATION STATUS
    We’re sorry, no applications received in the last 90 days match the information entered. Please verify your Last Name, Last 4 digits of Social Security Number, Zip Code and Email Address as entered at the time of application and try again or contact customer service at 1-877-523-0478.” but of course I did fill out and submit and application and have screen shots. So did they get it or not? Will I hear back from them or not? Should I call this # they give? Wait? Try again?

  65. Hello. Was wondering if you could shoot me what is the cheapest coach redemption to go to thailand. I have points in all the major airlines, plus amex and ultimate rewards. And in your opinion which is the best option. Thanks

  66. Hi, just checking about AA reward tickets with free ow added on. It seems like it has to be added before the flight to Europe/overseas from your gateway airport, and if you don’t live in a gateway city, you need to get yourself there on your own. Is this correct, or is there a way to add it later? thanks

  67. thanks again for your blog. used your links in 3 out of 4 apps (2 AA) the other night and it seems like you said not to use your Citi cards on Amazon pymts to meet the min spend…is this correct?

    • @Bo – I’d wait a week and then call. Good luck!

      @Nikolas – Depending on which airline and their partners has availability on the days you want to travel, either American Airlines or United/US Air miles should be fine.

      @Laura – You could have the one-way en route to Europe or after your return and if you’re not in the international gateway city, you have to get there on your own.

      @Faye – Thanks for using our links, though we don’t get a commission on the 50K American Airlines cards since they are better than the 30K offers. I used a Citi card with Amazon some time back and it was fine, but always double check with a small amount just in case anything changed! Also with the AA cards, you may not get approved for the 2nd card now, in which case it is best to write a reconsideration letter instead of calling.

  68. I would like to exchange 100,000 Am Ex reward points for Starwood Points or Airline (preferably United) points. Is there a way to move the points which allows for greater than 3 to 1 value? Thank you 🙂

  69. Daraius:

    I have an award ticket booked on AA. I was notified some time ago of a change in schedule.
    Can I use this now to add a one way at the end of the trip?
    If not, can make the change anyway & just pay AA the change fee of 150?
    Coming back thru MIA and would like to add leg to either SEA, SFO or LIH.

  70. Forgot to add that I am traveling to rt to BCN on the award ticket

  71. I want to thank you for the link for us air credit card for 35,000 miles no annual fee first year,
    I am new to this site .
    I don’t understand buying vanilla card from CVS or money orders with your credit card. Isn’t this a cash advanced?
    I go to Italy often and thought I was doing good with my Chase United Miles Plus Select which they do not offer any more I added Explorer for the points now I just did US Air and American but I need to get miles fast for my next trip. I put everything I can on a card and pay off in full with statement .
    Can you give my any advise and answer the question about money orders and buying pre paid cards.
    thank you for your time

  72. Is it a good idea to do a web check in for the Fairmont Kea Lani or would you potentially get a better room if you check in at the hotel in person? How about Hyatt and SPG properties also?

  73. Your notification when comments are posted does not seem to be working anymore.

  74. Darius,
    Do you still receive the 5x bonus when using your Ink Plus card for purchasing restaurant/fast food/retail gift cards ie BK, Footlocker, AppleBees gift cards from OD/Staples/Office Max? They don’t have any fees and Im having a hard time finding any office stores near that still sell $500 gift cards. The highest any of them sell in a 2hr radius near me is only $200 with a $6 fee. I’ve only had the Ink Plus a month so I still have 2 months to meet the $5k spending limit. Thanks

    • @Cheryl – You could wait for a transfer bonus, but even then you’d get only 2:1 ratio to Starwood, so not particularly good still.

      @Marshall – You can always change your flights with the change fee of $150. If the schedule change is severe, they may let you make changes, but not sure about adding the stopover, though you could always try!

      @dee – Welcome! Email me and I’ll send you more details.

      @Diane – It may help to chat with the staff at the hotel and request a better room in person. If you check in online you get what is assigned to you automatically.

      @H Hendricks – Thanks! I’ll check it out.

      @Unrea – You get the 5X bonus on any purchase in an office store, including buying gift cards, so that’s a good way to help complete the minimum spending requirements.

  75. After american airlines merger funally merges credit cards, will the new card still be american airlines. Is there a need to sugn up for an american card before the cards merge. (obviosly a need to get the us airways card) if you get the american card, then the cards merge will the new card be different if still same old american. For example if you got the united card before the merger could u get it after united/cont merged or was it considered dame card. So is it necessary to get the card of the airline that is obsorbing the other

  76. Daraius,
    I just got the Chase BA card and I plan to hit the $21k min spend for 100k Avios by using it for Vanila Reloads and Bluebird to pay my mortgage. I don’t understand why you said on 10/24/12 to alternate credit cards when doing this. Do you see a problem with me using my Chase BA card solely for paying my mortgage this way?

  77. Hi Daraius,
    I downloaded KVS Tool and paid the Diamond Level for 2 months. I searched One World CX and there are tons of availbility. 3 questions please:
    1. Can I use AA miles for anything that shows up in the search results? For examples:
    BA 1521 DFW LHR CS+
    -> CX 252 LHR HKG CS@
    -> CX 713 HKG BKK CS@
    AA 175 DFW NRT CS+
    -> CX 521 NRT HKG CS+
    -> CX 709 HKG BKK CS+
    2. AA agent said I cannot redeem award seats flying over Europe. Where can find the rules?
    3. KVS Tool shows “Premium Y” and there are seats available. How can I book that?
    AA 175 DFW NRT WS+
    -> CX 451 NRT HKG WS+
    -> CX 709 HKG BKK WS+
    Thank you so much! I also wrote an email to you.

  78. Have you seen the new changes to the Hilton HHonors program? Just got the email tonight. Very disappointing. I have been a Diamond VIP for the past 6 years and just made Diamond with Hyatt. I may be looking for a new loyalty program to give my Hilton business to. Any suggestions?

  79. Hey I want to copy your trip to bora bora or Tahiti or where ever you went on your honeymoon. I have no clue how to plan it. We will be flying from LFT to Houston then from there! When is the shoulder season and we have at least 450,000 ICH and Hilton points and about 400000 chase points and a whole bunch of airlines with united being our biggest! I want a hut over the water. Help can u just give me a few pointers. Thanks. Or who to talk to! Carla

  80. So I’m looking to book a Hilton award stay in Bora Bora. The standard rooms are about $500 or 50K points. The over the water rooms are about $900 or 200k!! points. Is it possible to book a standard room with points and then upgrade to a over the water room paying the difference in cash?

    Also, can the 2 free weekend night with the Citi Hilton Reserve card be used for the over the water rooms?

  81. how much it costs to buy miles on the Chase United Explorer Credit Card?

    • @Nikolas – The card will still be American Airlines. We don’t know if Barclays will issue the new American Air card or if it will be Citi. I suspect it will be Citi, so getting the Barclays US Air card now could mean more American Air miles later on.

      @Paul S. – It depends on the credit line on your BA card, but it should be fine as long as you are using the card legitimately.

      @VM – I replied to you via email.

      @Deirdre – I’ll be posting on that soon, but Hyatt has a good loyalty program. The flip side is that there aren’t many Hyatt hotels compared to Hilton, but it could be a good choice if it works for you.

      @Carla – Hilton will be raising there award prices at the end of March, so I’d book the hotel rooms ASAP. Unfortunately, United miles aren’t helpful to get to Tahiti, but Delta and American Air miles will be useful. You can read my trip report here and ask an award booking service to book the flights for you. Safe travels!

      @Ricki – We booked the base rate and then paid cash to upgrade to an overwater bungalow. See my trip report for more details.

      @Matt Numrich – Not sure I understand the question, but it is the same cost regardless of which card you use.

  82. @VM: Welcome to the KVS Tool!

    Yes, you can redeem AADV miles for flights that are showing positive (“+“) Award Availability. You cannot Waitlist (“@“) for Award Flights. AADV programme rules also do not allow redemptions in the Premium Economy (“W“) Cabin.

  83. Hi Daraius,

    I have been a long time reader of your blog and am hoping that you can answer this question easily. Basically I am an indian citizen living in the United States and now I have booked a trip to Switzerland, France and Spain for this summer.
    Now i need to find out about the visa requirements for these countries and get the optimum visas. I have heard that one can get individual visas or else get Schenghen visa.
    I am based in the New Jersey area if that affect any embassy/consultate locations i need to go to.
    In case you have done research/obtained visas for these countries, please share the process and sites to do so.

    thanks a lot


  84. I am buying a “new” used car. I was going to use my credit card but was told that the max they will let me charge is $3,000.00. Now I’m wondering if I should use my Chase Ink to purchase VISA gift cards at office supply store.
    Is there a charge to the Merchant, ie car dealer, for accepting VISA gift cards?

  85. Hello Daraius,
    I am looking for the best one world award travel in business class LA to Paris in March. Tahiti Nui has direct flight or I could try BA to London then take Chunnel to Paris. Any opinions on which product is better or any other ideas?
    Thank you!

  86. Thanks for the response. I really enjoy Hyatt (staying at the Park Hyatt Vendome in a couple of weeks using points!) and have only been a member of their program for a year or so, and I just finished their Diamond Challenge. I have seem some impressive analyses on some other blogs, with results indicating that the change to Hilton’s program is not that bad…but it just feels like it. My reaction is emotional, and as my husband put it, after 7 years of comfortable stays and wonderful vacations together, it feels like the end of a relationship. Maybe it is time to explore other options? While Hyatt does not have as big a footprint as Hilton, they are everywhere (Hyatt Place, Hyatt House, Hyatt Regency, or Grand Hyatt) I travel for work, with one exception. And so are Starwood properties. I like having two reward programs, and I travel enough to maintain a decent status level at both, but I prefer to use one and accrue points quickly.

    Anyway, the fact that I am so upset about Hilton’s actions lead me to believe I have been too vested in them for too long and I should try these other hotels for a while!

  87. @Pria: For Switzerland, France and Spain, you only need one “multiple-entry” Schengen visa. Typically you would apply at the consulate of the country of 1st entry in Schengen area. If your stay in one of those 3 countries is much higher than the others, you can apply at that consulate even if that is not your 1st entry. I believe there are consulates for all 3 countries in New York. For example, see Swiss visa desk in New York.

    Have a great vacation! (and don’t miss trying some of this Mövenpick ice cream while you are there).

  88. @Darius: Today I did my 1st AoR of 10 cards, all approved today (after only 3 calls) with a total potential of half a million points! I took notice of miles&points last year when I started reading your blog. So, a big Thank You for all the great info and keep it coming! (as thanks I did use your links for most of my apps). It is fun reading all your world travels. Cheers!

    • @Pria – Thanks for reading! You do need a visa, but the best information is on the embassies websites. You would just need 1 Schengen visa to visit all 3 countries.

      @H Hendricks – There is a charge for using credit cards/gift cards which is why they limit the maximum amount which you can charge to the card.

      @Cindy – I believe Air Tahiti Nui currently has recliner seats, so BA will be more comfortable, but will be longer. I’d personally do Air Tahiti Nui just because it is convenient and saves time, but BA definately has the better product.

      – I don’t think the Hilton devaluation is particularly bad, and of course good deals come to an end. But I like Hyatt and their Diamond elite program the best. They even have a great Diamond challenge which you can take since you are already a Hilton diamond.

      @KC – 10 cards! Wow! Thanks so much for using our links and good luck.

  89. Spirit Air started flying from my city last year. As a promotion, they gave away 20,000 miles per person first come first served – just walk up and receive the certificate. My family of 5 each got the 20,000 miles. To add more flexibility, my wife and I each got the Spirit credit card – another 15,000 miles each. Spirit’s domestic route map is decent and some of their flights require very low miles so I thought the miles could come in handy getting the family from A to B sometime. Now I’m trying to use the miles and finding it’s not easy. Do you have any thoughts on best/alternate use of 130,000 Spirit miles???

  90. I am a college student and I have had a credit card from Wells Fargo with a $1500 credit line since last June, and have paid off my balance every month. My score is now right above a 700, and a banker at chase convinced me to sign up for a Chase Sapphire preferred card. I am really looking for a good travel card as I live about 700 miles away from school, and often have to fly. I figured it would be a stretch for me to get this card, and I am waiting for my letter, because I didn’t get instant approval at the bank. I was wondering if there was something I could do if I were to get denied, and if I call the Chase reconsideration line what I can say. Also I was wondering if I were to get denied, how long I should wait until I turn around and apply for a different card that I may have a better shot at (primarily the chase sapphire not preferred card, or a southwest card).

  91. D: A friend informed me he had 700K Marriott points from work travel…..couldn’t he transfer 220K to Southwest(assuming its a 2:1 transfer) and achieve companion pass status? Not sure if Marriott allows free transfers to spouses, but in theory he could give her 220K Marriott points to transfer as well and both have companion status.

  92. Last sentence was intended to say couldnt he give his spouse the miles for companion pass as well.

  93. Hi Daraius,

    I have been flying with Singapore for years using my Amex miles from SFO to HK. First class tickets round trip costs my about 200k miles. The only trouble is I would have to fly from LAX to SFO in order to take Singapore. I would love to fly with Cathay directly from LAX to HK but can never find a flight using AA or Asia Miles. Any suggestions on how I can fly Cathay using my Amex miles?


  94. Hi Big D,

    Yeah! I got round 2 on the BA Chase card (50k, 25k, and 25k)! I verifed that it has been ran thru BA so I in the clear and now I am ready for wife and I to gun for a companion tick each. Question 1: Do I have to keep the card until I want to use the companion ticket? I may wait the full 2 years and that is alot of fees. 2), We will have a combined 480k by the time we get the two companion ticks. Planning to take kids diving in Indonesia (i.e., very long flight). Would I just be wasting points upgrading from Business to First? Is Business good enough to show up rested, or is First that much better, knowing that I probably wont be able to build these points up again. Since we normally fly coach, I bet Business (assuming they are flatbeds), would be really awesome by our standards.

  95. Hi Dairius,
    I have learned much from your blog, thank you! Do you think that your readers would be interested in this?. . .You can earn travel points by registering a credit or debit card with Plink (I recommend one that earns miles, of course). You simply link your credit or debit card, safely and securely, to a Plink account and then book travel through their website.

    Once you are registered, login to your Plink account and click on the travel tab. There you will see all of our travel offers, including 7 hotels, American Airlines, and two car rental locations. Simply click on the “Buy Now” button on the offer of your choice, click “Purchase” and then book your trip. Points for your travel booking will be added into your Plink account once the travel dates are completed – you can earn up to 5,000 Plink points.

    You cal also earn Plink points for dining and shopping offline. If you or your readers would like to take advantage of this, I posted my referral link to my site – Tima’s Tips ( Or they can use my referral link directly – – when signing up with Plink. And they will earn a $5 gift card just for signing up – its free.

  96. Hey Darius I was wonder if you’d be able to write about churning in 2013 I feel a lot of your readers, myself included, would be curious to know more about the in’s and out’s of it. Great site by the way.


  97. hi i just signed up for the citi aa business card through your link. I wanted to know how the $150 statement credit works for aa purchases? do i need to spend $150 then i get the credit or even $1 purchase and i receive $150? Thanks for a great blog!

  98. First, I would like to thank you very much for your blog, which has not only been helpful but I find takes a higher stance than others (in terms of referral commissions).

    What I would like to ask although it may fall outside your knowledge (your being based in the US), is how to “work” the ANA system. With over 100,000 points in my ANA account and now working/living in Japan, it is possible for me to redeem most flights, but the surcharge is often in the 600-700 USD range and 50,000 points or more (say from Tokyo to NYC)- not a great redemption by any means! They also have the supposed “stopover” possibilities, they indicate four- but the ANA on-line does not show this nor is there any information where is it possible to stop-over.

    I have done more than enough research on this, but other than asking the ANA customer service (which is half baked at best), I am truly stumped because I do not want to burn my ANA points in this frivolous way. Thank you for any help you may offer.

  99. Sir,
    Flying ORD to DUB (and next AMS, then back to ORD) 4/12/13 to 4/21/13. Aer Lingus has a low fare at $950-$1200. Are there any bonus cards that would work here with Mileage Plus United??

    Also, what is the difference or advantage between enrolling with United directly ( ?? None right since no bonus miles?

  100. thanks for all your hard work.