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How To Visit The Maldives With Miles and Points

By: Spencer Howard and Travis Cormier 

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

Hey Travel Junkies,

Many of you have been wondering how to make a trip to the Maldives happen. Off the bat, you should know that it takes a lot of planning. It can take 500,000+ points to put together a full trip if you’re flying in business or first class.

Personally, my trip took almost a year of planning. This guide will help you navigate and plan what points to get so you can take a dream vacation.

How to Travel to Maldives with Miles and Points

How To Book Your Flights

The biggest challenge you’ll run into is figuring out what flights to book. Flying from the US often means over 24 hours of travel! Fortunately, you have three amazing airlines to choose from if you are booking with American Airlines AAdvantage miles.

American Airlines classifies the Maldives as part of the Indian Subcontinent and, while American’s routing rules can be confusing, you can connect in Abu Dhabi to get to the Maldives.

You can fly with Cathay Pacific through Hong Kong, Etihad through Abu Dhabi, or Qatar Airways through Doha*. A one-way first class award ticket will cost 115,000 American miles between the US and the Maldives, while a one-way business class award is 70,000 miles. A one-way economy class seat costs 40,000 miles. Continue Reading

Blog

Citi Bonus and Application Rules

By: Jeff Brownson

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

Well, I’m not sure if we saved the best for last, or if it just took me longer to get this written up, but it’s time to end the workweek with a bit of information about Citi Sign-Up Bonus Rules. Once you have learned this information, you are free to start your weekend. Unless you are reading this while at work. Then you should probably stay until the end of your day. Citi Bonus Sign-Up Rules will not help you if you get fired.

The Happiest (and Saddest) Part of Earning Points

So you’ve read a few posts, you’ve done your research, and you’ve decided to apply for a credit card. It’s an exciting time. You may have a vacation spot all picked out. Maybe there’s an airline that you really want to fly.

Perhaps you are looking forward to a drink with an umbrella on a faraway island. But stop right there, if you want that shiny pile of points that are listed as a sign-up bonus, you had better know the rules.

Otherwise, that happy feeling can turn into a denial of your application. That’s what we want to avoid. Continue Reading

Blog

American Express Bonus and Application Rules

By: Travis Cormier

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

Hey Travel Junkies,

Recently, we’ve discussed some big changes to the American Express Platinum Card and how to use SPG Starpoints. With so many great offers coming from American Express, you should know what rules Amex places on its applications and bonuses.

credit card up close

Charge card vs Credit Card

American Express offers two types of cards – charge cards or credit cards. Understanding the difference is important if you want to be sure that you can open a new account with American Express.

Credit cards are lines of credit with a pre-set spending limit that does not have to be paid off monthly. Many of the co-branded cards provided by American Express are credit cards including the Gold Delta SkyMiles and Platinum Delta SkyMiles cards, the Starwood Preferred Guest card, and the Hilton Honors Surpass card.

Charge cards are lines of credit without a pre-set spending limit, but must be paid monthly. Several cards that earn Membership Rewards are charge cards, including the American Express Platinum and Premier Rewards Gold cards.

There are also some co-branded charge cards, including the American Express Platinum cards by Charles Schwab and Mercedes-Benz.

 

Two credit cards every 90 days

American Express has limitations on credit card applications. You can only open two new credit cards every 90 days. This same limitation does not apply to charge cards. Continue Reading

Blog

Using Household Income for Credit Card Applications

By: Julie Szpira

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

A few weeks ago, I was having dinner with a friend and her husband. We were talking about frequent flyer miles, credit card points and sign up bonuses (my favorite topics), and I asked if they had each signed up for the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

My friend said “No”, and explained that since her husband was in school, his student income was too low to apply for credit cards.

We were thankfully in a loud restaurant, because I pretty much screamed, “You’re married! You can use HOUSEHOLD INCOME!”

 

What Counts as Income

Prior to 2009, credit card companies were generous in their credit card approvals. Almost everyone was approved, and huge credit lines were extended to some that did not have the ability to pay the bill. This resulted in many people experiencing default, bankruptcy and ending up with terrible credit scores.

In 2009, the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act (CARD Act) became law. It requires credit card companies to assess an applicant’s ability to pay, before opening a new account or increasing an existing credit line. Continue Reading

Blog

Why I Upgraded my Sapphire Preferred to Sapphire Reserve (Without Getting a Bonus)

By: Bryce Conway

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,

Anyone who has been reading 10xTravel for longer than a couple weeks can tell you that I am adamantly opposed to upgrading credit cards. The mere thought of doing so causes me physical pain.

By upgrading a credit card instead of applying for it separately you voluntarily give up any sort of sign-up bonus offered by the card, which is basically throwing away free money.

But, I had to break my own rule recently when I upgraded my Chase Sapphire Preferred to a Chase Sapphire Reserve.

I finally caved and upgraded my CSP to a CSR

We’ll talk about why I did that in a moment, but first let’s cover the basics.

Here are the details on the Chase Sapphire Reserve:

  • 3x points on dining and travel, 1 point per $1 on everything else
  • Points transfer 1:1 to many major airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • $450 annual fee not waived first year
  • $300 annual travel credit good for any form of travel
  • Priority pass membership, which gives you (plus guests) access to 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide
  • Up to $100 credit for application fees for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry

Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story: $15,000 European Honeymoon for Almost Nothing!

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

If you’ve ever wanted to see how you can put together an amazing honeymoon to Europe, this is the success story for you. Brett is going to tell you all about how took this amazing trip with his wife.

If you’d like to share your story with the 10xTravel readers, drop us an email and share how you did it! (bryce [at] 10xTravel [dot] com)


Planning a honeymoon was the last thing my fiancé wanted to worry about. The wedding took precedent for her and so the task was passed to me.

Luckily I had been following 10xTravel for a few years and already had a simple plan. Acquire as many points as possible to make our honeymoon as long as possible.

So, where did I begin you might ask?

It all started about two years ago while dating my now fiancé. I knew even back then that she was the one I was going to marry, and knew I wanted to surprise her with the honeymoon of a lifetime.

After using other miles and points for beach getaways, cruises, and family gatherings, these are the points we used to book this trip:

Chase Ultimate Rewards: 250,000

Capital One points: 120,000

Marriott Rewards: 240,000

We earned the Ultimate Rewards points through our Chase Sapphire Preferred cards as well as a Chase Sapphire Reserve card. The Capitol One points were earned through each of our Capitol One Venture cards.

We were fortunate to earn the Marriott Rewards points through my fiancé’s work travel. However, we could have easily earned the points through the Chase Marriott cards.

Now that we had the needed points, we had to decide where to go!

We immediately agreed that Italy and Greece were perfect for our honeymoon and that we’d spend two and a half weeks enjoying ourselves.

Here’s how we booked our trip:

Genoa, Italy Port

Flight to Genoa, Italy

To start, we wanted to go to Cinque Terre as we had heard wonderful things, so I transferred 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points to United and booked our flights to the closest airport. We used our Capital One to cover the taxes and fees.

 

Continue Reading

Blog

The 7 Best Credit Cards For Lounge Access

By: Luke Sims

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,

It was only a few years ago (before I found 10xTravel) that I was sitting in an uncomfortable chair, listening to the gate agent announce the fifth flight delay, and being pelted by cheerios by the curly-headed brat in the seat behind me. You’ve been there, right?

Today, I want to help you break free from the chains of sub-par airport comfort and discover the oasis you deserve – airport lounges.

If you’re new to the concept of airport lounges, check out our primer on what to expect in a lounge. If you’re tired of settling for mediocre and ready to reclaim your freedom, it’s time for you to check out 7 of the best credit cards that give you free access to airport lounges.

1) The Platinum Card from American Express

The Platinum Card and the Business Platinum Card from American Express give you access to tons airport lounges across the globe. Most notably, you receive access to perhaps the most luxurious lounges in the United States, Centurion Lounges – available in New York (LaGuardia), Dallas, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Miami, and Seattle.

Although each Centurion Lounge is different, some of the features that go beyond normal lounge amenities include micro-spas, a soundproof family room, premium bars, and hot buffets. You can bring two complementary guests per visit (so spread the love). I fly out of New York often and, although this is probably the weakest Centurion Lounge of the collection, it’s always nice to sling back a few free whiskeys and stay out of the mess that is LaGuardia. Continue Reading

Blog

Introducing the 2017 10xT Las Vegas Giveaway!

Hi Travel Junkies,

Last week I told you about the amazing party we are throwing in Vegas this October and started accepting RSVPs.

The tl;dr details are this: We booked a ~3,000 square foot penthouse suite, are filling it with food and drinks, and we are opening up 60 spots for 10xT Readers to attend.

Why are we doing this?

I think the better question is, why not?

This free event is our way of saying thank you for being the best readers on the internet.

Today I am happy to announce that we will be giving away 2 free trips to Vegas to attend the event, complete with all the extras that any epic Vegas trip should include. This is the first major giveaway we have ever done here at 10xT so of course we wanted to go all out.

Here’s what each prize package includes:

  • A round trip flight to Las Vegas
  • Free limo ride from the airport to your hotel
  • Two free nights in a Bella Suite the Venetian
  • Two tickets to our 10xT Vegas Reader Meetup (so you can bring a friend)
  • $100 in cash to spend however you like
  • Brunch with Bryce and the 10xT team at the Grand Lux Café

Continue Reading

Blog

How To Use Miles And Points To Visit Disney

By: Julie Szpira

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

Whether you’re 2 or 92, a trip to Disney can be a magical experience for the family to share. What can be not-so-magical is the high price tag of a visit to the Happiest Place on Earth.

Flights, hotels and park tickets can quickly add up to thousands of dollars. Well, we here at 10xTravel want you to enjoy your trip to see Mickey and Minnie, and not worry about the costs.

By maximizing points and miles, you can make your visit, and still have cash left to buy that $11 souvenir cup!

Despite the fact that I am a non-married, childless, 32 year old woman, I love Disney and actually had an annual pass for Disneyland as recently as 2016.

Disney Main

Is it normal for an adult to have multiple solo photos in front of the Disneyland Castle?

The following plan is designed for a visit to Disney World, but with a few tweaks to hotel planning it would also work for a visit to Disneyland.

Disney World is a larger property, with many more hotels from which to choose, including more than 25 Disney owned properties, as well as many hotel chain options.

Disneyland has a much smaller footprint, with only three Disney properties, but the area still provides many excellent hotel chain options.

 

How To Fly To Disney World

Unless you are living within a reasonable driving distance of Disney (for my family, 1200 miles was considered reasonable… it’s not), you’re going to have to fly.

With a little bit of pre-planning, a family of four can fly for almost free with the Southwest Companion Pass. Check out our complete guide to obtaining the Southwest Companion Pass to learn more. Continue Reading

Blog

I’m Throwing a Party In a Las Vegas Penthouse (And You’re Invited)

Hi Travel Junkies,

Mark your calendars, on October 7th 10xTravel is going to throw the party of the year at the Venetian Las Vegas and YOU are invited.

We have reserved a ~3,000 square foot Penthouse Suite just for the occasion and plan on filling it with food, drinks, and up to sixty 10xT readers. There will be prizes, giveaways, and other great events throughout the weekend all leading up to the big blowout on Saturday night.

Here’s the tentative agenda:

  • Friday, October 6th  8PM: 10xT Happy Hour at The Dorsey (Venetian Las Vegas, open to anyone)
  • Saturday, October 7th  10AM: Brunch with Bryce + the 10xT Team (Grand Lux Café @ the Palazzo, open to anyone)
  • Saturday, October 7th  8PM: 11:00pm 10xT Reader Meetup (Penthouse Suite at the Venetian, must RSVP to attend)

The Penthouse Suite can only accommodate 60 people so we are taking RSVPs on a first-come, first-served basis.

 

Here’s how to claim your spot:

  • Enter your info below and we will reach out if you are one of the first 60 people.
  • We will send instructions on how to send your $50 deposit via PayPal.
  • You will have 48 hours to send your deposit before we open up your spot to someone else.
  • UPDATE: All spots for the party were claimed in about 3 minutes so we have removed the 10xT Vegas Party entry form below. We will be having more of these events in the future – so keep an eye out!

We are requiring a $50 deposit to RSVP, which will be refunded to you the day after you attend the event (our way of cutting down on no-shows).

Should you decide to RSVP and not attend, we will likely withdraw your $50 in quarters, have everyone in attendance use them to play slots, and donate any winnings to a worthwhile charity.

I’m only half kidding about that.

 

Hotel Accommodations:

We have reserved a block of rooms at the hotel for 10xT readers at a discounted rate. If you are interested in booking please email me (Bryce[at]10xTravel[dot]com) for more details. Don’t delay, these are going to go fast.

Thanks for being the best readers on the internet and I hope to see you in Vegas!

Happy Travels,

Bryce

P.S.  We will be kicking off the festivities with a giveaway next week. Keep an eye out for the details.