If you’re like Emily and me and love art and culture, you’re interested in learning more about the 3 new major art museums set to open in London, New York, and Abu Dhabi in 2016.
I’ll give you highlights and show you how to use miles & points to visit!
Use Miles and Points to Visit 3 Exciting New Museums in 2016
1. New Tate Modern Art Museum in London
Tate Modern is set to open a 10-story addition to their existing building on June 17, 2016.
The original Tate Modern building far exceeded its anticipated number of visitors by over 100%, so the new space will be able to accommodate even more art lovers. The Guardian calls this $400 million-dollar expansion the most important new cultural building in the UK in nearly 20 years!
Admission is free, except for special exhibits.
And summer is an excellent time to visit vibrant London!
How to Get to London With Miles & Points
Folks with the Chase Sapphire Preferred card have lots of options to redeem Chase Ultimate Rewards points for award flights to Europe, especially with airlines creating new routes all the time.
And keep in mind folks with Citi ThankYou points can fly to Europe with Singapore Airlines miles.
If you took advantage of the offer to earn a total of 100,000 British Airways Avios points by meeting the tiered minimum spending requirements, you can use your points on flights to Europe, too.
Remember, British Airways award flights to London are known for imposing nasty fuel surcharges. Here are my tips on how to avoid them!
You can travel beyond London after you visit the new Tate museum! For example, Emily and I took the train from London to Paris. Or you can explore more of Europe for cheap with budget airlines.
If you do decide to venture out, remember to save up to 50% when you dine!
2. Met Breuer Art Museum in New York
Link: Met Breuer Announcement
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is a world-famous museum with an extensive collection of art and artifacts. Some of the items in its collection are truly priceless!
They’re expanding with a new branch called the Met Breuer Museum, which will open March 18, 2016, at the site of the old Whitney Museum location at 75th Street and Madison Avenue.
Admission prices to the Met Museum are always on a recommended basis. It’s $25 for adults and kids 12 and older (free for kids under 12).
This is exciting for modern and contemporary art lovers because the Met already has such a huge collection of ancient art. The Met Breuer Museum will mainly focus on newer artwork.
How to Get to New York City With Miles & Points
Visiting this museum can be a part of a Big Travel with Small Money trip to New York!
Most domestic airlines charge 25,000 miles for a round-trip coach award flight within the continental US.
But if you’re under 1,150 miles non-stop from New York, you can fly round-trip in coach for 15,000 British Airways Avios points on partner American Airlines. You can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to British Airways at a 1:1 ratio.
And if you’re less than 700 miles away, you can book an award flight with United Airlines for 10,000 United Airlines miles each way.
Folks with the Southwest Companion Pass can fly a friend or partner with them for only the cost of taxes on ANY Southwest ticket.
You can also get good deals on a cheap paid fare. Find out if you’re in 1 of the best cities for flight deals! Even if you aren’t, you can still take advantage of the 10 best deals in travel for a trip to the Big Apple!
3. Louvre Abu Dhabi Museum in Abu Dhabi
Link: Louvre Abu Dhabi
When most folks think of the Louvre, Paris comes to mind. And there will be a new Louvre museum opening in late 2016. But it’s not in Paris (where Emily and I visited). It’s in Abu Dhabi!
The museum will be a continuation of the Louvre’s collection. And the beginning of a new place to look at and understand art.
By the time the building is constructed, it will be an important new home for art in a gorgeous new building. So art lovers are excited to see the final product.
How to Get to Abu Dhabi With Miles & Points
Etihad is the main airline that flies to Abu Dhabi. They partner with American Airlines. So you can use American Airlines flights for Etihad flights. I’ve written about how to find award seats on Etihad and redeem your American Airlines miles for them.
Their award prices are reasonable to fly all the way to the Middle East. You’ll need:
- 45,000 American Airlines miles 1-way in coach
- 67,500 American Airline miles 1-way in Business Class
- 90,000 American Airlines miles 1-way in First Class
But it’s well worth it considering flights to Europe are around the same price. You get to fly much farther for not a lot of extra points!
And if you have AMEX Membership Rewards points, Citi ThankYou points, or Starwood points, you can transfer them to Flying Blue to get a deal with monthly Flying Blue Promo Awards to Europe (including Tel Aviv in the Middle East!).
These are all excellent and affordable options to fly to Adu Dhabi.
There are also frequent fare sales to the Middle East. So if you keep your eyes peeled, you could find a cheap seat!
Where to Stay?
You can also transfer flexible points like Chase Ultimate Rewards or American Express Membership Rewards to different hotel programs for award nights at hotels.
Note: Folks who want to book paid stays could check out discount sites like Orbitz, Expedia, or TravelPony for deals. But remember you won’t get stay credits or points (and might not have your elite status recognized).
Airbnb is another great way to save money on accommodations, especially for longer visits, or if you prefer a more local feel.
You could also mix-and-match a cheap paid stay on Airbnb with an award stay to get a unique 2-for-1 experience!
Pay With the Right Card!
Make sure to pay with a card that earns bonus points on museum tickets!
- Citi Prestige Card – 2X Citi ThankYou points on entertainment
- Citi ThankYou Premier Card – 2X Citi ThankYou points on entertainment
- Citi ThankYou Preferred Card – 2X Citi ThankYou points on entertainment
Make sure to only use the Citi ThankYou Preferred domestically though, because it has a 3% foreign transaction fee on purchases made overseas.
And if you love to visit museums, keep in mind many Bank of America credit and debit cards are your ticket to free entry at ~150 museums and cultural centers all over the US.
2016 will be an exciting year for folks who love to visit museums and see new works of art! There will be an addition to the Tate Modern in London. And an expansion of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
You can also look forward to a brand new Louvre location. But it’s not in Paris. It’s in Abu Dhabi!
Use your miles & points to visit the new museums in each city!
Let me know if you’re planning a trip to any of these fantastic cities this year! Which museum opening are you looking forward to the most?