Can You Use Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® Miles Towards Parking?

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Can You Use Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® Miles Towards Parking?

Million Mile SecretsCan You Use Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® Miles Towards Parking?Million Mile Secrets Team

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Million Mile Secrets reader Raymond commented:

I was wondering, for the Arrival Plus card:  I need to park my car long term.  Would that be considered a travel expense?  What suggestions might you have for parking?

Raymond is referring to the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard®, which has a sign-up bonus of 40,000 miles (~$440) after you spend $3,000 in the 1st 3 months.

Redeeming Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® Miles for Travel Expenses

Link:   Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard®

Link:   My review of the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard®

The 40,000 mile sign-up bonus is worth $400 if you redeem for travel expenses.

But you get an extra 5% of your miles back after every travel redemption.  So you’ll get another 2,000 points ($20) back after you redeem your 40,000 miles for travel.

You earn 2 miles per $1 for ALL purchases and you can redeem 1 point for 1 cent towards travel expenses.  You also get an extra 5% of your miles back for travel redemptions.  So you’re actually getting ~2.1 cents per mile, when you redeem for travel expenses.

However, if you use your miles for non-travel expenses, you’ll only get 0.5 cents per mile, which isn’t very good.

Is Parking a Travel Expense?

Barclays defines travel as:

Airlines, Travel Agencies & Tour Operators, Hotels, Motels & Resorts, Cruise Lines, Passenger Railways and Car Rental Agencies as defined by the merchant category code.  Purchases made at merchants that do not process transactions under these terms or that use incorrect MasterCard merchant category codes will not qualify.

Parking is NOT on the list.

So if Raymond wants to use his Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® miles towards parking expenses, he’ll only get statement credits equal to 0.5 cents per mile.

Raymond could double the value of the 40,000 mile Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® sign-up bonus if he redeems for travel.  But that doesn’t matter if Raymond doesn’t plan on having travel expenses and would rather save money on parking.  That said, using long-term parking usually means that you’re traveling, so it would be better to redeem miles from the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® card for travel expenses.

Earning Miles on Parking

Raymond will earn 2 miles per $1 spent on all purchases with the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® card, including parking.  He could use those miles later for a statement credit towards travel.

That way he is getting ~2.1 cents towards other travel expenses, per $1 spent on parking.

Can You Use Barclays Arrival Miles Towards Parking
The Barclays Arrival Plus Earns 2 Miles per $1 on ALL Spending, Even Parking Your Dream Car!

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is another good choice for earning extra points on parking expenses.

You get 2 Ultimate Rewards points for every $1 you spend on travel, which includes parking.

Can You Use Barclays Arrival Miles Towards Parking
Emily and I Like Earning 2 Points per $1 Spent on Travel With the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth 1 cent per point if you redeem them for statement credits.  And 1.25 cents if they are redeemed for travel through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal.  

So he’s getting ~2 cents if he uses his Ultimate Rewards points towards statement credits.  And he’s getting 2.5 cents (2 Ultimate Rewards points X 1.25 cents towards travel redemptions) towards travel booked through the Ultimate Rewards portal.

For example, a flight from Austin to San Francisco on United, booked through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal, is $278 if you pay cash.  But only 22,240 Ultimate Rewards points.

Can You Use Barclays Arrival Miles Towards Parking
You’ll Get More From Your Points Through the Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal Instead of Statement Credits

If you’d transferred Ultimate Rewards points to United first, then booked an award ticket, it would cost 25,000 points for a low-level domestic round-trip flight.  So this is a better deal.

And sometimes your points are worth even more if you transfer them to airline and hotel partners.

For example, if you transferred Ultimate Rewards points to IHG Hotels, you could get a PointBreaks room at the Holiday Inn Prague Airport for 5,000 points ($50 if you used those 5,000 points for a statement credit).  But if you paid cash, it would cost 93 Euro (~$129).

Can You Use Barclays Arrival Miles Towards Parking
You’ll Spend 5,000 Points ($50) Instead of 93 Euro (~$129)!

Bottom Line

Raymond could use the miles he’s earned on the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® for parking expenses, but he’ll only get 0.5 cents per mile.  This is half of what he’d get if he redeemed for an expense which Barclays considered a “travel” expense (Barclays doesn’t consider parking as a travel expense).

He’s better off using his Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® card to pay for parking.  He’ll earn ~2.1 cents per $1 he spends towards future travel.

Or Raymond could use the Chase Sapphire Preferred card to pay for parking and earn 2 Ultimate Rewards points per $1 he spends.

He could use the points for:

  • Statement credits (~2 cents per $1 spent)
  • Travel through the Ultimate Rewards portal (~2.5 cents per $1 spent) or
  • Big Travel with Small Money by transferring to hotels and airlines

Raymond will get ~1 cent per point if he uses either his Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® miles or the Chase Sapphire Preferred for statement credits.  You can usually get more out of your points than 1 cent.  But it is fine to use your points however YOU want to use them and if they will save you cash and if you won’t be traveling.

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Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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@amy – No experience with Super Shuttle, but if the meal is on your hotel bill, it should count towards redemptions.

@LLow – It depends on how you want to use the cards and your travel goals!

I am reading the comments regarding the Barclay and Chase cards and need clarification. It is my understanding that one has to actually use the Barclay card to pay for things and then get a statement credit and you will get extra points for those expenses that are coded as travel related. On the Chase Sapphire, one comes out ahead if you use the ultimate rewards portal for purchases and to book travel. You also have the option of transferring points in your account to their partners if you are trying to book award travel. Is there something I’m missing with these cards?

Hi,

1. Does anyone know super shuttle in Orange county (L.A) from SNA airport works with barclays arrival plus ? can i get the money back?

2. Can i eat in the hotel restaurant and charge to my room and pay with barclays when i check out and get money back?

please answer

thank you,

I just wanted to follow up with my post, you were correct, the purchase of Hilton Gift cards on hilton.com are not considered travel. I bought a $25 gift card with my Barclay card and it doesn’t show up in the rewards section. I may try going to a hilton and buying some to try that.

we use aloft hotels for free parking esp if leaving an a 5 am flight it is included in room rate(good rates) for free 10 days they take u to airport and pick u up ..etc very nice for the price…

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