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Travis Cormier

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Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards [2018]

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

By: Travis Cormier

Hey Travel Junkies,

Getting into points and miles can really change your life but there’s one golden rule you should always follow—even more important than the Chase 5/24 rule. Do you know what it is?

Don’t go into credit card debt for points and miles.

Interest accruing on credit card debt will quickly eat away the value you get from points and miles. And by “quickly”, I mean “immediately”.

Unfortunately, life has a fun way of throwing situations at us that we don’t always have the financial means to handle. If this has happened to you, you’re not alone. Did you know that less than 40% of Americans are able to cover an emergency expense of $1,000?

For whatever reason you have credit card debt, whether it is from college or a lost job, you really need to get it paid off before starting in the points and miles world. Not only will it be a weight off your shoulders, it will improve your credit score, making it more likely that you’ll get approved for lucrative sign up bonuses in the future.

Of course, interest fees can make it a challenge to pay off your existing credit card debt. If your current card has a 20% interest rate and you have a balance of $10,000, that’s $2,000 every year that the bank is getting from you that isn’t counting towards your original debt!

Instead of paying interest, you should look into doing a 0% balance transfer. A balance transfer can help you tackle your debt and get it paid off faster. Instead of giving your money away to the bank, you can put it towards your balance. With a 0% balance transfer, you’ll have a better chance of paying it off quickly.

Before we look at some of the best balance transfer credit cards available today, there are some factors to consider.

Factors to Keep in Mind for Balance Transfers

There are a few key factors to keep in mind when you’re doing a balance transfer. Banks will put a lot of information in the fine print, so what should you be paying attention to?

First, you should look at the duration of the 0% interest time frame. Will you be able to pay off your card in this time frame? If not, you should consider another option if possible, otherwise you will need to apply for another balance transfer credit card once your 0% promotional period has ended.

You should also pay attention to the bank from which you’ll be transferring your balance. Most banks won’t let you transfer balances you already have with them.

For example, if you have a $5,000 balance on a Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, you would not be able to transfer the balance to a Chase Slate. Chase won’t let you do this because they don’t want to refinance themselves. You can only transfer balances from other banks.

One big asterisk that often gets hidden is the balance transfer fee is that many banks will charge you a percentage on the balance transfer even if there is 0% interest. Balance transfer fees are typically 3-5%, but some cards offer a promotional 0% period. Keep in mind, if you can pay off your current balance in 3-4 months, your current APR may make it cheaper to pay the interest instead of the balance transfer fee.

With all that considered, let’s look at some of the best balance transfer credit cards on the market as of today. Continue Reading

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Chase And Hyatt Take the Hotel Card Game To Another Level

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

By: Travis Cormier

Hey Travel Junkies,

There’s been a lot of big news in the points and miles world this week. There’s one big change that really has me excited; The new World of Hyatt Credit Card by Chase.

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Use World of Hyatt Points to Stay at the Park Hyatt Maldives for Only 25,000 Points Per Night

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the World of Hyatt program because of the tremendous value you can get from it. I even booked a stay at the Park Hyatt Maldives for my honeymoon for 25,000 Hyatt points per night!

Just last week, Chase launched a new World of Hyatt Credit Card to replace the old version. It comes with a number of improvements so let’s dig into the details and see what this card has to offer.

(You can learn more about the World of Hyatt Credit Card by visiting our credit cards page)

Earn 60,000 Hyatt Points Quickly

Chase is offering a tiered sign-up bonus with the new World of Hyatt Credit Card. You’ll earn 40,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first three months and an additional 20,000 points after spending $6,000 total in the first 6 months.

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The Increased Bonus Can Get You 3 Nights at the Hyatt Regency Maui

The sign-up bonus is an improvement on the bonuses we saw with the old Hyatt card including offers of 40,000 Hyatt points or 2 free nights. The old bonus of 2 free nights and the current 60,000-point bonus can both get you 2 free nights at a top tier Category 7 property—30,000 points per night. However, you’ll have more flexibility with the 60,000 points, especially when you consider that there are only 14 Category 7 Hyatt properties.

This is not considered a new product so, if you have the old version of the card, you won’t be eligible for the new sign-up bonus. As with other Chase cards, you are eligible for the sign-up bonus if it has been 24 months since you last received the sign-up bonus on a card.

At this time, this card is not restricted by the Chase 5/24 rule but it likely will be at some point in the future. When exactly this change will take place is still TBD. Continue Reading

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How to Get the Best Rate on Rental Cars

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

By: Travis Cormier

One of the most amazing experiences I’ve had while traveling is driving a Jeep along the road to Hana in Maui. It was an amazing day and easily the highlight of my trip.

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Having a rental car let’s you get out and explore! (image courtesy of Miryea Ayala)

Getting a rental car can quickly consume a large part of your travel budget, but it doesn’t have to. Let’s look at some of the best ways to save money on your rental car so you can have more cash to spend at your destination.

Should You Use Cash Or Points?

The first question you should be asking is whether you should use points or cash to book a rental car. I’ll be up front, I’ve never used points for a rental car and there are a few reasons why you should think otherwise before using points.

One of the biggest reasons you shouldn’t use points is because you’re getting the minimum value for your points. If you go through the Chase Portal and have a Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’re locking in 1.5 cents per point for your rental car. You can often get more value by transferring Ultimate Rewards to a partner like Hyatt or United.

Chase Sapphire Reserve (learn more)

The absolute biggest reason why you shouldn’t use points to book a rental car is because you can’t take advantage of the many discounts available. Booking through a portal doesn’t always allow you to enter a variety of discount codes that may be available to you when booking directly.

This isn’t the case all the time, sometimes the prices available through the Chase or American Express portal will be better. But before you use points, you should be sure that you’re getting the best deal.

The Best Tool for Searching Rates

The one tool to rule them all, for rental car purposes at least, is Autoslash which checks discounts that may be available to you from your credit cards and various memberships.

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Use AutoSlash to Compare Rates with Many Discount Options

Continue Reading

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Guide to Credit Card Purchase Protections

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

By: Travis Cormier

Hey Travel Junkies,

Here at 10xTravel we love showing you how to use miles and points to travel the world without going broke. We do that by sharing tips and tricks to maximize the rewards you get from travel rewards credit cards.

Travel isn’t the only benefit you get from using credit cards. Most credit cards offer consumer protections for the things you buy using your cards. Today, let’s shift our attention away from travel and focus on the purchase protections that could help you save money on your day-to-day purchases.

Before we get into the benefits of purchase protections, I have some bad news…

Chase is dropping price and return protection across all of its cards. Yes, this includes the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card and Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. Additionally, Chase is reducing the trip cancellation/interruption insurance on its United co-branded credit cards.

Chase Sapphire Preferred (learn more)

Chase Sapphire Reserve (learn more)

These changes will go into effect on June 1, 2018. It’s currently unclear as to the amount the trip cancellation/interruption benefit will be decreased. If there are any other updates before then, we’ll make sure to update you.

Unfortunately, Chase isn’t alone in decreasing the value of these benefits to its users. Citi is changing its price protection benefit, known as Price Rewind as well. Citi will now offer a maximum of $200 per claim, and only $1,000 maximum per year. This is significantly decreased from the previous $500 per claim and $2,500 per year.

With these changes in mind, let’s take a look at the purchase protections you can get via credit cards.

Price Protection

We all like saving money, and that’s what price protection is here to do. Price protection allows you to receive a refund on a purchase you made if the price drops after your purchase. Continue Reading

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Which Chase Ink Business Card is Right for Your Small Business?

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

By: Travis Cormier

Hey Travel Junkies,

Chase has been on a roll recently with its small business cards recently. The Chase Ink Business Cash Credit Card has its highest bonus offer ever,  the Chase Ink Preferred is as good a choice as ever, and Chase just recently released the Ink Unlimited.

Chase now offers 3 different Ink cards to choose from

With all the buzz around these cards you may be wondering which chase ink business card is right for your small business. Don’t worry, I’ve taken a deeper look at these cards and even done some math to help you decide which one will best fit your small business’s needs.

Sign-Up Bonuses

Many small business are new, and you may not yet be sure what your spend will be. This can make it difficult to decide which Chase Ink card is right for your small business.

What can help now is focusing on the sign-up bonus. This will be the best value you can get based on the information you have now. You can always decide later that you want to switch.

Ink Preferred – 80,000 points (learn more)

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Ink Cash – 50,000 points  (learn more)

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Ink Unlimited – 50,000 points  (learn more)

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The sign-up bonus makes The Chase Ink Preferred a winner on this front. The 80,000 Ultimate Rewards you will earn from the sign on bonus can go a long way towards helping you grow your small business – especially if that small business involves travel. Continue Reading

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Amazing Places To Visit With The Southwest Companion Pass

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

By: Travis Cormier

Many of you have already earned the Southwest Companion Pass for 2018 (and possibly 2019 as well). Unfortunately, it will be harder to earn in the future since Chase restricted the bonus on personal cards to one every 24 months. If you have the Companion Pass, now is the time to get the most value possible out of it.

With that in mind, I wanted to share with you some of awesome destinations you can get to using the Companion Pass.

Aruba

Aruba is one of my favorite Caribbean destinations. The resort area runs up and down the west coast of this small island nation and the water is extremely calm. I recommend Aruba to all of my friends with small children, because the calm ocean helps make it a great family friendly destination.

If you’re an adventurous traveler, Aruba also has plenty of adventure for you too. When I visited last year I rented a motorcycle and road along the desert sands of the west coast, and explored the caverns and natural pools (not for the faint of heart to get there!) in Aruba’s Arikok National Park.

Use Your Companion Pass to Explore the Caves of Aruba’s National Park

Southwest flies nonstop to Aruba from 3 U.S. cities:

  • Baltimore/Washington (BWI)
  • Ft. Lauderdale (FLL)
  • Houston Hobby (HOU)

From HOU and BWI , typical rates are around 26,000 Rapid Rewards points and $75 in taxes and fees per person. The best deal I’ve found is from FLL, where prices are as low as 14,500 Rapid Rewards points and $75 in taxes and fees. With the Companion Pass, that means you and your companion can take fly to Aruba for only 14,500 points and $150 in taxes and fees!

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The Calm Waters of Aruba are Great for Families

I know not everyone lives in these three cities – and they’re pretty popular Southwest hubs – so let’s explore some connecting options.

If you’re trying to fly from Denver, you will pay a little bit more in Rapid Rewards points, but with the Companion Pass you’re still getting an amazing deal. You can travel round-trip for as low as 40,000 Rapid Rewards points and $75 in taxes and fees. Although it seems like a lot initially, breaking it down you quickly realize that is only 20,000 Rapid Rewards and $75 per person to get to one of the farthest and hardest to reach Caribbean vacation spots. Continue Reading

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New Priority Pass Benefit: Airport Restaurants

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

By: Travis Cormier

Hey Travel Junkies,

If you’ve been around the points and miles game for awhile, you’ve surely heard of Priority Pass. For the uninitiated, a Priority Pass Select membership grants you access to thousands of airport lounges across the world for free.

Many credit cards such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card offer a Priority Pass Select membership as a benefit.

To help expand the benefits for its members, Priority Pass has added restaurants to its list. Let’s look at how and where this new benefit works so you can start getting even more value from your membership.

How to Use Priority Pass at Restaurants

Using your Priority Pass benefit at restaurants is easy. Just present your card when you are seated, before you place your order, and the credit will be applied automatically to your bill.

The credit is roughly $28 per guest in at U.S. airports and similar at airports abroad. This is enough to get you a meal, a drink and maybe a bit more. The number of guests who qualify for the benefit varies depending on which credit card provides your membership. Below is a table that shows how many guests you receive based on which credit card has given you Priority Pass Membership. Continue Reading

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5 Tricks To Get The Most Out Of Airbnb

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,

You can book some amazing hotels with points but sometimes your hotel options just don’t cut it. Belize is well known for its lack of chain hotels which rules out award stays and, personally, I can’t imagine staying in the Great Smoky Mountains anywhere but a cabin.

This is where Airbnb come into the picture. At some destinations, your best option is often a home-sharing service such as Airbnb. At this point, Airbnb does not have a loyalty program so you won’t be able to redeem points for stays the way you would with Hyatt or Marriott.

Despite this, you’re not out of luck. There are lots of ways to help save money or earn points for your Airbnb stays. Let’s take a look at some of the best ways to maximize your Airbnb bookings.

1. Book With The Barclaycard Arrival Plus or Capital One Venture Card

By far, the easiest way to save on your next Airbnb stay is using points that can erase travel charges such as those earned from the Barclaycard Arrival Plus or the Capital One Venture Card.

Barclaycard Arrival miles and Capital One Venture Rewards miles are each worth one cent each. This means if you have 50,000 miles, you have $500 that can be used for travel.

To use these points, all you have to do is use the credit card to pay for the Airbnb stay. Once the purchase has posted, you can apply your points to the booking and erase the purchase with the points.

The sign-up bonuses for these cards vary but are often around 50,000 miles once you meet the minimum spend requirements. The bonus alone can easily cover the cost for a few nights at an Airbnb.

If you’re applying for one of these cards, keep in mind that Capital One pulls your credit report from all three major credit bureaus—Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

Make sure you know your real FICO credit score before applying for your next credit card.

2. Use Airbnb Gift Cards

A great way to help offset the cost is through buying gift cards for Airbnb. Although you will still be paying cash, you can save money or earn a few extra points for your booking.

If you would like to save some cash, buying discounted gift cards is a great way to go. You can find discounted gift cards on a variety of sites such as Raise and eBay—Paypal Digital Gifts often runs sales on new Airbnb gift cards.

Through these sites, you can often find gift cards for a few percent off face value. PayPal Digital Gifts often provides a 10% discount. Not a bad way to save a few bucks on your Airbnb stays!

If you buy the gift cards the Chase Freedom Unlimited Card, you can get a discount and earn 1.5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar. Even better, you can use the Blue Business Plus Card from American Express to earn 2X Membership Rewards points per dollar.

If you prefer to earn the most points possible, you can utilize bonus categories to buy gift cards. Staples and Office Depot frequently carry Airbnb gift cards which means you can purchase gift cards with your Chase Ink Business Cash Card to earn 5X points per dollar.

The Chase Freedom Unlimited and the Chase Ink Business Cash Card don’t have an annual fees but cannot transfer Ultimate Rewards points to airline and hotel partners. To transfer points, you will also need one of the following cards that also earns Ultimate Rewards points:

  • Chase Sapphire Preferred Card
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve Card
  • Ink Business Preferred Card

Knowing where to buy gift cards can help you save a little bit off the cash price or help you earn the most points possible for your Airbnb stay.

3. Use Your Chase Sapphire Reserve Card Travel Credit

The travel credit on the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card is my favorite travel credit. While many travel credits actually provide “airline fee” credits, the travel credit from the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card automatically applies to the first $300 in purchases each cardmember year that code as travel—this includes Airbnb.

In fact, this is the only travel credit available that can be used for Airbnb bookings. Keep in mind, the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card does fall under the Chase 5/24 rule so it should be a top priority if you want the card and are under 5/24.

The travel credit resets every cardmember year, so you can easily get $300 towards an Airbnb stay every year you hold the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card.

4. Combine With Airline Partnerships

In addition to the points you can receive from your credit card, you can stack with additional Airbnb partners for even more points.

By signing up on with Delta you can earn Delta SkyMiles for your Airbnb stays. Typically, you will earn 1X SkyMile per dollar sent on your Airbnb bookings but the occasional special will let you earn up to 5X SkyMiles per dollar.

You don’t even have to make your booking with one of the American Express co-branded Delta card. You can use whatever credit card you want to earn points or even use Airbnb gift cards to book.

This means you can stack multiple points on every booking you make. If you purchase Airbnb gift cards at Staples with the Chase Ink Business Cash Card, you will earn 5X Ultimate Rewards points and 1X SkyMile per every dollar on your bookings.

Stacking promotions is a great way to help maximize the value you receive from an Airbnb booking.

5. Extend Your Stay

Did you know that many Airbnb hosts offer a discount for weekly or monthly bookings? By extending your stay an extra day or two, you can sometimes unlock a bit of a discount.

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Staying one Extra Night Can Unlock Weekly Discounts

Unlocking this discount can let you extend your vacation an extra day for a few more dollars. For those once in a lifetime vacations, a few extra dollars for an extra day may very well be worth it.

Do NOT Exchange Transferable Points For A Gift Card

It might seem like exchanging transferable points—Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou Points—for Airbnb gift cards would be a good way to use points to stay at an Airbnb property. However, this option should be avoided if at all possible as the value you would receive is nowhere near the value of these points.

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Avoid Redeeming Highly Valuable Ultimate Rewards for Gift Cards

If you exchanged 10,000 Ultimate Rewards points for a $100 Airbnb gift card, you would only get a value of 1 cent per point. 10,000 Ultimate Rewards are worth $150 through the Chase Ultimate Rewards Portal when you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card or $125 when you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or the Ink Business Preferred Card.

If you transfer them to partners, you could get even more value out of your points. Think about it. You could book a one-way flight from the west coast to Hawaii for 12,500 British Airways Avios which is a transfer partner of both Amex Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards—you can also transfer SPG Starpoints to British Airways. That’s only 2,500 more points and you’d get a flight that is almost always $250-350 one-way.

Final Thoughts

When staying in a hotel isn’t the best option at your vacation destination, Airbnb can help fill in the gaps. Airbnb doesn’t have its own reward program, but that doesn’t mean you can can’t maximize credit card points and save money.

Thanks to the travel credit from cards the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card and miles from the Capital One Venture Card and the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, you can easily stay at Airbnb properties for little to no out of pocket cost.

If you are paying cash, consider taking advantage of credit card bonus categories to buy Airbnb gift cards so you can earn maximum points. If you saving money is the number one priority, make sure you look for discounted Airbnb gift cards.

Next time you book, take advantage of these tricks to make the most of your next Airbnb stay.

Travel In Style,

Travis

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Why You Should Stop Using Your Southwest Credit Cards For Daily Spend

By Travis Cormier

Hey Travel Junkies,

Many of you have opened one or two of the Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards credit cards offered to secure the Southwest Companion Pass for 2018 and 2019.

The Companion Pass is one of the best values in travel because it gives you a buy one get one free Southwest ticket for up to nearly two years! Once you get the sign-up bonus, though, does it makes sense to keep putting spend on these cards?

The simple answer is “no”.

There’s plenty of reasons why putting your daily spend on these cards is not the best idea but let’s take a look at some of the most compelling reasons why you should move onto greener, more lucrative pastures.

Missing Out On Other Sign-Up Bonuses

The biggest reason you need to stop spending on your Southwest credit cards is because you’re missing out on other bonuses. With the Southwest credit cards you only receive 1X point per dollar spent on your typical daily spending.

If you’re using using your spending to hit minimum spends and earn other sign-up bonuses, you could be getting much more than 1X point per dollar. Bonuses on cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card are typically 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points when you reach the required minimum spend. By using your spend to earn sign-up bonuses, you’re going to be reaping the rewards much faster.

Limited Bonus Categories For Daily Spend

Many credit cards offer bonus categories for daily spend. The Chase Sapphire Reserve Card earns 3X points per dollar spent at restaurants and travel while the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card earns 2X points per dollar in the same categories. The Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards credit cards only offer 2X points per dollar on Southwest flights and a few hotel and rental car partners.

It simply doesn’t makes sense to purchase even Southwest tickets using your Southwest Rapid Rewards credit cards. You can earn a flexible currency like Chase Ultimate Rewards points at the same rate when using a Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. This gives you the option to transfer Ultimate Rewards points to your Southwest Rapid Rewards account or to another partner such as Hyatt or United Airlines that might be more useful to you for a particular trip.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Lack Flexibility

Southwest Rapid Rewards points lack the flexibility that other award programs have. Southwest Airlines isn’t part of a global airline alliance and it doesn’t have any airline partners. If Southwest doesn’t travel to your destination, you are out of luck.

Additionally, Southwest has a revenue-based award program which means that more expensive cash ticket will require more Rapid Rewards points. If you use a program such as United MileagePlus, which has a region-based award chart, the total miles required to book an award ticket will not be attached to the cash cost of the ticket. Instead, it will be determined by your origin and destination—this includes any positioning flights that might be required.

While you can use Rapid Rewards for a few other uses, such as rental cars, the redemption rate is only 1 cent per point. Rapid Rewards have a fixed value of approximately 1.5 cents per point when redeemed for flights, so using them for rental cars minimizes their potential value.

If you instead use a card such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card for your daily spend, you get a tremendous amount of flexibility. Chase Ultimate Rewards transfer to every major airline alliance plus a few hotels (though, Hyatt is generally the only one worth it). With this flexibility you can travel to every corner of the globe.

Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Credit Cards vs Other Airline Credit Cards

If you’re going to be putting spend on an airline credit card you should compare the benefits of airline credit cards to see if you are getting any extra value from your daily spend. Let’s compare various benefits you receive from airline credit cards.

Elite Status ProgressPriority Boarding
UnitedYesYes
AmericanYesYes
DeltaYesYes
SouthwestNoNo

Rapid Rewards Credit Cards Offer Fewer Benefits Than Other Airline Credit Cards

Through daily spend on other airline credit cards you can earn progress towards elite status. Elite status helps you earn free upgrades, more miles on paid flights, and other perks from the airlines. Beyond the Companion Pass, Southwest doesn’t have anything similar to status that can be earned from daily spend on credit cards.

Priority boarding is a big deal on Southwest since it allows you better seat choices. This is another benefit offered among the other major airline credit cards that isn’t offered by any of the Southwest Rapid Rewards credit cards, and it is definitely a much bigger deal on Southwest.

Other major airline credit cards also offer access on select versions of their co-branded credit cards. Since Southwest doesn’t have any lounges, it can’t offer this highly valuable benefit. In fairness, lounge access is only available on airline credit cards with higher annual fees.

What Credit Card Should You Be Using for Daily Spend?

Now that we’ve discussed why you shouldn’t use your Southwest credit card for daily spending, you are probably asking yourself what credit card you should be using.

I have not so subtly hinted to this answer a few times so far, so it should be no surprise that those who fly with Southwest Airlines should consider using the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card instead. When comparing it with the Chase Southwest credit cards, the Chase Sapphire Preferred has most that is missing and more, while having the same low $95 annual fee.

By opening the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card your spend will be contributing to a new sign-up bonus. Beyond the bonus, though, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card works better as a daily spend card because it earns two points per dollar on dining.

Plus there are some additional benefits that come with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card that you don’t get with your Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards credit card such as trip delay insurance and trip interruption insurance.

Let’s be honest, travel doesn’t always go as planned. Flights get delayed because of weather and mechanical issues. If you have trip delay insurance you can be covered for expenses you have that arise from the delay. This includes food, lodging, and other reasonable expenses.

Trip interruption insurance covers you when things go wrong that stop your trip from continuing, or even starting. Illness, bad weather, jury duty, and yes even if the plane you were waiting on was hijacked, you are covered.

These two benefits are often sold when booking travel for over $100 for more expensive trips. When you book with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, these are included at no additional charge. If you are still using a Southwest Rapid Rewards credit card, you won’t have these protections.

With the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, you’ll also have return protection. If you attempt to return an item and the store won’t accept the return, you may be eligible for up to $500 reimbursement per item.

Final Thoughts

The Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards credit cards can help you get one of the best deals in travel—the Southwest Companion Pass. However, once you have earned the Companion Pass, you should move on to another credit card or two.

Rather than earn 1X Rapid Rewards point per dollar, you could be earning more Ultimate Rewards points that can still be transferred to your Rapid Rewards account if you need a Southwest flight. On top of that, there are more sign-up bonuses to earn and more benefits—think, airport lounge access—to be had from other credit cards.

With these other options out there, the Southwest Credit Cards just don’t make sense as your go-to credit card. There is very little flexibility in how you use your points, there are no bonus categories for daily spend, and there are fewer consumer protections compared to credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.

A Chase Southwest credit card might be your first love and for good reason, but it isn’t the best card for you long-term. If you’re looking to take the next step on your miles and points journey, take a look at our monthly top cards list to see what card might be right for you.

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3 Great Ways To Fly To Tokyo With Points

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.

Tokyo is a destination on almost every traveler’s bucket list, and for good reason. The city has culture, phenomenal food, and adventure right on its doorstep. There are a lot of options for flying to Tokyo. Let’s look at how you can use points and miles to fly in comfort and style.

Japan Airlines

What better way to get to Tokyo than on the airline with the country’s namesake. Japan Airlines is a fantastic way to get to Tokyo. Whether you’re traveling in economy, premium economy, or the front of the plane you will have a phenomenal experience.

It isn’t often you’ll hear me excited about economy class flights—I’m 6’5”—but Japan Airlines has an economy product that makes giants like me excited to fly.

The economy seats on select Japan Airlines flights are some of the best you’ll find on any airline. On most international routes, you will find economy class are Japan Airlines’ “SkyWider” seats. These seats have more leg room and width than you’ll find on almost any other international carrier.

You can book these seats round-trip for only 50,000 Japan Airlines Miles. Even better, if you have flexible travel dates there is a discount price of 40,000 Miles. The dates vary year-to-year, but for 2018 if you travel between January 10th – February 28th, or April 1 – May 31st you can get these discounted prices.

Japan Airlines also has one of the best business class products on the market if you want some space to lie down. If you want something really special, you can try first class where they serve champagne that costs about $400 per bottle.

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