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Bryce Conway

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We Threw a Party for 10xT Readers in Vegas and It Was Awesome (Video Inside)

Hi Travel Junkies,

After months of buildup and hype, the first ever 10xT Las Vegas Reader Meetup finally took place last weekend at the Venetian Las Vegas.

We rented a Penthouse Suite, filled it with snacks and booze, and invited 60+ readers to join us for an entire weekend of socializing and fun.

Truth be told, we weren’t sure what to expect when we first announced the event in May. I had already written a chain of emails to convince readers to attend, hoping that the event would be at capacity when the big day finally rolled around.

When tickets sold out < 3 minutes after launch I knew this was going to be special. And trust me, it was. We even have the video to prove it.

Special thanks to 10xT Reader Kennedy Carey for putting that video together. You can find Kennedy on Instagram or check out his company website here.

Also a special thanks to King of Clubs Las Vegas, who helped us score the Penthouse Suite and block of rooms for readers staying at the Venetian. If you find yourself headed to Sin City you’ll want to talk to Johnny with KOCLV and tell him Bryce sent you.

And lastly, thanks to all the 10xT Readers who attended the weekend’s events. I had a blast meeting all of you and hearing your amazing travel stories.

We also got our entire security deposit back, which is always a good thing when you are popping bottles of champagne right next to a $40,000 piano.

So what do you think? Should we do this again next year?

Happy Travels,

Bryce

Blog

Aloha, Southwest! Hawaii Service Announced for 2018

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

After weeks of speculation and rumors, Southwest has finally announced their intention to add flights to Hawaii beginning in 2018.

Southwest Twitter Hawaii

Southwest Airlines will be flying to Hawaii beginning in 2018

This is particularly great news for anyone who is in the process of earning their coveted Southwest Companion Pass, which Southwest has confirmed will be able to be used on flights to Hawaii. The Companion Pass effectively creates a “buy one get one free” scenario for flights to Hawaii, including those booked with points.

And with the ability to transfer points from Chase Ultimate Rewards to Southwest, many points/miles enthusiasts (myself included) will now have a number of ways to earn and use points to get to the Hawaiian islands.

Bryce

Companion Pass + Routes to Hawaii = 2 trips for the price of 1!

Southwest still has not released details on routes, aircraft, etc. though I would imagine we will see those in the coming weeks. Here’s to hoping they launch direct routes from the West Coast to multiple islands as well as intra-island flights.

Southwest’s entry in to the Hawaii market should also put added pressure on other carriers to slash fares, which is a win for everyone with plans to travel to the Aloha State.

I think I might have a Mai Tai to celebrate.

 

Happy Travels,

Bryce

Blog

Use One of These 2 Credit Cards to Buy Your New iPhone (Free Insurance + Save $200)

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Like many of you, I am eagerly awaiting the launch of the new iPhone X at 12:01am Pacific Time on October 27. I am long overdue for a phone upgrade and am a sucker for being an early adopter of new tech products.

Also like many of you, I am a bit concerned about carrying a $999+ device in my pocket day in and day out. Particularly when I am on the go or traveling to locations that would cause even the most seasoned tourists to consider wearing one of those absurd money belts.

10xTravel Money belt

Money belts = perfect for holding anything except a conversation

Which is why I plan on carrying a backup solution in my pocket. Literally.

I’m talking about automatic cell phone protection, a free perk offered by select credit cards that can help you save a ton of money should your phone decide to stop working, break, or walk off with a new friend.

More importantly, this perk will prevent you from wearing a money belt and help put your mind at ease.

Let’s take a look at some of the best options:

 

Continue Reading

Blog

Best Credit Card Offers – October 2017

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Every month I share a post with what I believe are the top credit card offers on the market according to the 10xT staff. Today we are going to take a look at the best offers for October 2017.

I rank these offers by looking at their signup bonus, cardholder perks, ongoing value, and any fees they may charge. And while the best offer for you will vary depending on a number of factors, I am going to rank the top offers based on the order in which I think they should be chosen by the average person.

If you’ve ever watched the NFL Draft before, consider this list my version of “Todd’s Big Board”. It’s simply the best overall cards available without regard to a specific points/miles need.

I also divide these top credit offers in to two lists, one for those of you who are over 5/24 and one for those of you who are under.

(If you don’t know what the Chase 5/24 rule is you’re going to want to give this a read)

As always, feel free to email me with questions about your own situation and I would be happy to help you select the best card for you.

Here we go!

Travel Planning October 2017 - 10xTravel Credit Cards

If you are under 5/24, here are the best cards available right now:

1) Chase Sapphire Preferred

Current Offer:

  • 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 5,000 bonus points when you add an authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months
  • 2 points per $1 spent on dining and travel, 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Trip delay and primary rental car insurance
  • $95 annual fee, waived the first year 

Commentary:

Once again, the Chase Sapphire Preferred comes in at #1 overall because of its incredible signup bonus, reasonable annual fee (that is also waived for the first year), and the amazing value of the points it earns.

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are widely considered to be among the best points in the industry thanks to their ability to be transferred to multiple airline and hotel partners. This gives you a ton of options for redeeming your points no matter where you want to travel.

You can also redeem Ultimate Rewards to book travel via the Chase travel portal at a value of 1.25 cents per point, meaning the 50,000 bonus points offered by this card are worth $625 toward travel.

Transferring them to Chase’s many transfer partners can provide the highest redemption values if you know where to look.

One of the best examples of this is round trip to Hawaii for just 25,000 Korean SKYPASS miles. Meaning that the 50,000 point signup bonus from this card could score you two round-trip flights to Hawaii.

Note that Chase has imposed new restrictions on the Chase Sapphire cards that limit your ability to get multiple versions of them. [More details on that here]. Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story: Alana Books A $5,000 Spanish Vacation for $106.12

Guest Post By: Alana

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

I decided my husband and I were going to need a vacation after he spent a year in a very intense program earning two master’s degrees. I also had heard about using miles and points to travel through others around my community, specifically two close friends who saved a TON of money on a trip to Italy.

I figured if we were going to pay so much for tuition, it should at least help us take an extravagant vacation in the end!

We chose Barcelona, Spain for our eight-day adventure and it was amazing!

Points covered our flights, hotels, transportation from the airport and six tours throughout the city.

Here is how we did it on points:

Alana - 10xTravel Success Story

Flights to Barcelona

My husband opened the United Mileage Plus Card and the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and we used them to pay off his tuition.

We then transferred all of our bills over to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and before we knew it – in less than three months – we had easily reached the minimum spend and then some on both cards.

We saw that two round-trip economy flights to Barcelona for 120,000 United miles were available when were ready to book. We had exactly 120,000 miles and points. We transferred our Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United and booked our flights. We only had to cover the $106.12 in taxes and fees. Continue Reading

Blog

What I’ve Been Up to – Points/Miles Moves for September 2017

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Hi Travel Junkies,

Every couple of months I publicly share my own points/miles moves to help pull back the curtain on how the pros are able to travel for next to nothing.

So without further ado, here is what I have been up to lately:

  • I applied and was immediately approved for a Citi Thank You Premier card. 50,000 Citi Thank You Points after $4,000 spend in 3 months, no fee first year. I have no specific plans for these points but the 50,000 bonus makes it an easy choice for anyone over 5/24.
    • This is my second Citi Thank You Premier card, having had it a little more than 24 months ago. Which qualifies me for another bonus per Citi’s new bonus rules.
  • I applied and was immediately approved for a Barclays AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite MasterCard. 60,000 bonus AA miles after first purchase, $95 fee is not waived. No immediate plans for these points but I always enjoy having a large number of AA miles on hand. Particularly with the amount of award space that they have released in the past couple of months.
  • I applied and was rejected for a Merrill Plus Visa Signature card from Bank of America. I knew this was a long shot but decided to go for it based on rumors that the card will be discontinued this month. My attempts at reconsideration did not go well, to say the least.
  • I finally was able to product change my Chase Ink Bold to the new Chase Ink Preferred card. Chase was not allowing anyone to do this until recently, despite my almost weekly requests. I won’t get a signup bonus for doing this (and can’t anyway because I am well beyond Chase’s 5/24 rule) but the 3x points on social media advertising will be huge given how much 10xT spends in that category.
  • I cashed in 110,000 Lufthansa miles and ~$2,000 to book two round-trip business class tickets to Italy this coming January. Yes, the $2,000 in fees is not ideal, but I had to use these miles before they expired this month and had no other need for them. Truth be told, I had completely forgotten I had these Lufthansa miles until a few weeks ago. A rookie mistake on my part.
  • I redeemed 17,000 Southwest points to book a weekend getaway to Washington D.C. with my wife and daughter. Each of them flew free thanks to my Southwest Companion Pass and a lap child ticket. I stayed at the beautiful W Hotel Washington D.C. for just $188 per night thanks to some rewards from Hotels.com and the fact that D.C. is pretty slow this time of year.

Continue Reading

Blog

How to Earn the Southwest Companion Pass for 2018 & 2019

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Hi Travel Junkies,

The end of the year is fast approaching, which means it is time to talk about one of my favorite perks in the points and miles world.

The Southwest Companion Pass.

The Southwest Companion Pass is arguably the most lucrative airline perk on earth and an absolute must get for anyone who frequently travels with multiple people (couples, families, etc.).

Today we are going to cover how the Companion Pass works, how to maximize its value, and how to earn and use it for almost 2 full years.

Let’s get to it.

 

What is the Southwest Companion Pass?

The Southwest Companion Pass (often abbreviated as “CP”) is a perk that allows you to bring a companion on any Southwest flight that you fly. All you need to do is pay your companion’s taxes and fees, just like any other award booking.

Unlike most other “companion passes”, the Southwest Companion Pass can be used on both paid and award flights. Even if you weren’t the one who paid for your flight (work travel, generous friends/family, etc.).

Bryce in Hotel

Southwest Companion Pass = more trips to Vegas with friends

There are no blackout dates and there is no limit to how many times you can use your Companion Pass (trust me, I would have hit any limit long ago). As long as there is an open seat on the plane it can be booked with a Companion Pass. Continue Reading

Blog

Hotel Review: W Hotel Washington DC – Wonderful Room

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Hi Travel Junkies,

I just got back from a quick weekend trip to our nation’s capital that featured a stay at W Hotel Washington D.C. Though I have been to this hotel many times to visit their incredible POV Bar I had not yet stayed there, so I figured a family trip was the perfect chance.

W Hotel Review - 10xTravel

The W Washington D.C., formerly known as Hotel Washington

The W is just a short walk from the National Mall and many other famous D.C. attractions, making it an incredibly convenient choice for me as my wife and I were traveling with our 8 month old daughter.

It took us less than 10 minutes to walk from the hotel to the Washington Monument, Smithsonian Museums, and dozens of fantastic restaurants and bars.

The W Washington D.C. is a Category 6 Starwood property, meaning it can be booked for a rate of 20,000 Starpoints per night. With rates often exceeding $500+ per night this would typically be a great use of one of my favorite hotel loyalty currencies. Continue Reading

Blog

Best Credit Card Offers – September 2017

By: Bryce Conway – Founding Editor of 10xTravel.com

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Hi Travel Junkies,

Summertime is finally coming to an end. And while for most people this means the start of a season filled with falling leaves, football, and pumpkin spiced everything, my mind is fixed on something entirely different.

For me the end of summer means that 2018 summer award travel is now available to be booked on many airlines.

So, if you’re thinking about taking a big trip next summer (or any time before that), the best time to get started earning those valuable points/miles is right now. There is no better way to get started than to grab a new credit card with a lucrative sign-up bonus offer.

Last month, we decided to divide our top credit offers into two lists, one for those of you who are over 5/24 and one for those of you who are under.

(If you don’t know what the Chase 5/24 rule is you’re going to want to give this a read)

This new method received quite a bit of positive feedback so we’re going to do it again for September.

And while the best offer for you will vary depending on a number of factors, we’re going to rank the top offers based on the order in which we think they should be chosen by the average person.

As always, feel free to email me with questions about your own situation. (bryce[at]10xtravel[dot]com)

Here we go!

Beautiful Clouds over Beach

 

If you are under 5/24, here are the best cards available right now:

1) Chase Sapphire Preferred

Current Offer:

  • 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
  • 5,000 bonus points when you add an authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months
  • 2 points per $1 spent on dining and travel, 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Trip delay and primary rental car insurance
  • $95 annual fee, waived the first year

Commentary:

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card has firmly established itself as the best overall card to start with because of its great sign-up bonus, reasonable annual fee (that is also waived for the first year), and the amazing value of the points it earns.

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are widely considered to be among the best points in the industry thanks to their ability to be transferred to 7 airline partners and 4 hotel partners – though, Hyatt is usually the only useful one.

You can also redeem Ultimate Rewards to book travel via the Chase travel portal at a value of 1.25 cents per point, meaning the 50,000 bonus points offered by this card are worth, at a bare minimum, $625 toward travel. Your points can be worth even more in the travel portal when you pair this card with the Chase Sapphire Reserve (see below for more details). Continue Reading

Blog

Breaking: New Major Restrictions Being Applied to Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve

Hi Travel Junkies,

Big news in the points/miles world today courtesy of Doctor of Credit. This broke just minutes ago.

Before sharing it let me just say that this is not “official” just yet, but it certainly looks to be legitimate. I have not personally confirmed this with any of my own sources.

But here is what is rumored to be happening to the Chase Sapphire family of cards (Chase Sapphire Reserve, Chase Sapphire Preferred, and Chase Sapphire):

As of August 27, Chase will no longer approve you for one of these cards if you have already had another one of them. Specifically, you cannot receive more than one bonus from any of these cards in a 24 month period.

Or said in plain English, you can no longer get multiple Sapphire card bonuses.

Here is the text from today’s memo:

Beginning August 27 our same-product eligibility requirements have been updated for all Sapphire Credit Card products, which include Chase Sapphire, Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve.

Here’s a look at what’s new: Continue Reading