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Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) Credit Card Review

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Caroline Lupini

The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express has long been a favorite amongst travelers. But with the Starwood and Marriott merger, is it still worth your time?

The Marriott rewards program brought over much of the good of the classic SPG program, like its broad range of transfer partners and transfer bonus. And thankfully, the SPG credit card was also updated with new features and benefits after the merger as well. Though, it’s definitely not all rainbows and unicorns.

In this article, we’ll run through the new SPG credit card’s features, enhancements, and discuss whether or not the card deserves a place in your wallet.

Let’s get started!

Welcome Bonus

The Starwood Preferred Guest Amex credit card currently has a 75,000 Marriott point welcome bonus after spending at least $3,000 on purchases within the first three months of card membership.

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Blog

Best Credit Cards: January 2019

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Bryce Conway – Founder of 10xTravel.com

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 credit card offers for January 2019.

I rank these offers by looking at their signup bonuses, 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.

Not a ton of changes this month as most cards have retained their bonuses from late 2018.

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)

And finally, I added a list of the cards to the beginning of the post for easier reading. You can simply click on “the list” or “the details” below to read more about each card.

As always, feel free to email me with questions (Bryce@10xTravel.com) about your own situation and I would be happy to help you select the best card for you.

Under 5/24:

The List

The Details

Over 5/24:

The List

The Details

 

Best Credit Cards Under 5/24

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card 50,000 bonus points after $4,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Ink Business Preferred Credit Card 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after $5,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Chase Sapphire Reserve Earn 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months(Learn more)
Ink Business Cash Credit Card $500 bonus cash back after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More
Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card $500 cash back after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card 60,000 points after $3k spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More
United Explorer Card 40,000 bonus miles after $2,000 spend in 3 months(Learn more)
Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Credit Card Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 monthsLearn More
IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card 80,000 points after $2,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
British Airways Visa Signature Card 50,000 Avios after $3k of purchases in the first 3 months, 25,000 Avios after $10k of purchases in the first year, additional 25,000 Avios after $20k spend in the first yearLearn More
Chase Freedom $150 cash bonus after $500 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Chase Freedom Unlimited $150 bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months(Learn more)

 

 

 

Best Credit Cards Over 5/24

The Business Platinum Card from American Express Earn 50,000 points after you spend $10,000, an extra 25,000 points after an additional $10,000 all in the first 3 months. Terms apply.Learn More
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card 50,000 bonus miles (worth $500) after spending $3,000 in the first 3 monthsLearn More
American Express Business Gold Card Earn 4x points on 2 select business categories. Terms Apply.Learn More
Capital One Spark Miles for Business 50,000 miles after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months, an additional 150,000 miles when you spend $50,000 in 6 monthsLearn More
Capital One Spark Cash for Business $500 cash back after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months, plus earn $1,500 when you spend $50,000 in the first 6 monthsLearn More
The Platinum Card from American Express Earn 60,000 points after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.(Learn more)
Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express Earn 75,000 points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.(Learn more)
Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card 125,000 Hilton Honors points after $2,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card 125,000 Hilton Points after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More
Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card $500 cash back after $3,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More

 

The Details: Best CardsUnder 5/24

 

1) Chase Sapphire Preferred  

Image result for chase sapphire preferred

Current Offer:

  • 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases 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

(Full offer details here: Learn More )

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Chase Sapphire Preferred vs chase sapphire reserve
Blog

Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG)® Luxury Card Review

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By:  Caroline Lupini

The Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG)® Luxury Card from American Express launched in August 2018, after the new Marriott Rewards program replaced the SPG, Marriott Rewards, and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards loyalty programs as part of the Marriott-Starwood merger.

While the card doesn’t have a particularly impressive earn rate for everyday spend, it comes with some unique benefits that could be valuable for frequent Marriott hotel guests.

Let’s take a look at what you need to know about the SPG Luxury Card.

Starwood Preferred Guest - spg - luxury credit card review - Benefit - Complimentary Marriott Gold Elite Status

Opening the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) Luxury Card from American Express will give you automatic Gold Elite status in the Marriott Rewards program – normally you’d have to spend 25 nights at Marriott hotels to reach that level.

Welcome Bonus

The SPG Luxury Card offers 75,000 Marriott Rewards points when you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of holding the card.

 

Bonus Categories

The SPG Luxury card has the following bonus categories:

  • 6X at Marriott hotels (including former Starwood brands and Ritz-Carlton)
  • 3X at U.S. restaurants
  • 3X on flights booked directly with airlines
  • 2X on all other purchases

There is no limit on the number of bonus points you can earn in these categories.

Benefits of the SPG Luxury Card

The SPG Luxury Card doesn’t have particularly compelling bonus categories – but what makes it interesting are the extra benefits it offers. Here are a few of the perks that you get in exchange for the $450 annual fee:

  • $300 Annual Marriott Statement Credit

Every card member year you’ll receive a statement credit for the first $300 you spend at Marriott properties worldwide, including room charges and anything billed to your room. That means if you were planning to stay at a Marriott hotel anyway, this is a cool $300 back in your pocket. This benefit follows your account year, so you have 12 months to use the credit from when you open the card, and the limit will reset every year on your account anniversary.

SPG Luxury Card | Benefit | $300 Annual Marriott Statement Credit

Every cardmember year you’ll receive a statement credit for the first $300 you spend at Marriott properties worldwide, including room charges and anything billed to your room.

  • Annual Free Night Award (Up to 50,000 Points)

Every year, after your account anniversary, you’ll receive a free night certificate valid at properties that cost up to 50,000 points per night. (This kicks in after you’ve held the card for a year – you won’t receive a free night certificate when you open the card.)

By the time you’ve had the card for a year, Marriott will probably have rolled out their new rewards chart, so your free night certificate will work at category 1-7 properties during off-peak dates, and category 1-5 properties during peak dates.

Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Credit Card Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 monthsLearn More

 

  • Complimentary Marriott Gold Elite Status

Opening the card will give you automatic Gold Elite status in the Marriott Rewards program – normally you’d have to spend 25 nights at Marriott hotels to reach that level. Gold status gives you a 25% bonus on points earned from Marriott stays, 2:00 pm late checkout (based on availability), room upgrades, 250-500 bonus points per stay and free enhanced in-room internet access.

  • 15 Bonus Elite Nights

If you’re working on earning Marriott Elite Status, the SPG Luxury Card will give you a jump-start by crediting your account with 15 elite nights every calendar year starting in 2019.

You can receive a maximum of 15 bonus elite nights per Marriott Rewards account, regardless of how many Marriott or SPG credit cards you have.

  • Platinum Elite Status After Spending $75,000

While we don’t necessarily recommend putting this much spend on the SPG Luxury Card (other cards will earn you more points), if you spend $75,000 on this card in a single calendar year, you’ll receive Platinum Elite status with Marriott.

Platinum Elite gives you access to hotel lounges at participating Marriott brands, an exclusive welcome gift at check-in (points, breakfast vouchers or a welcome amenity), 50% bonus points on stays and enhanced room upgrades (including Select Suites).

  • Priority Pass Select Membership

Like pretty much every other high-end travel credit card out there, the SPG Luxury Card comes with a Priority Pass Select membership, which gives you and up to two guests access to more than 1,000 airport lounges (and restaurants) around the world.

Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) |Luxury Credit Card Review | Benefit | Priority Pass Select Membership

SPG Luxury Card comes with a Priority Pass Select membership, which gives you and up to two guests access to more than 1,000 airport lounges (and restaurants) around the world.

  • Global Entry or TSA Pre-Check Statement Credit

If you, or someone you know, don’t have Global Entry or TSA Pre-Check, you’ll get a statement credit for $100 or $85, respectively, when you pay the application fee for either program using the SPG Luxury Card. You can use this benefit once every four years.

  • Roadside Assistance

If you find yourself stranded in the U.S. or Canada – even in your own driveway – being an SPG Luxury Card holder means American Express will cover the cost for emergency services like replacing a flat tire, towing your car up to 10 miles, jump-starting the battery, retrieving your key from inside the car and delivering up to 2 gallons of fuel up to 4 times per year. However, note that the terms for this service exclude rental vehicles.

SPG Luxury Credit Card | Benefits | Roadside Assistance

Being an SPG Luxury Card holder means American Express will cover the cost for emergency services like replacing a flat tire, towing your car up to 10 miles, jump-starting the battery, retrieving your key from inside the car and delivering up to 2 gallons of fuel up to 4 times per year.

  • Extended Warranty, Purchase Protection and Return Protection

If you use the SPG Luxury Card to purchase something, American Express will add up to two years to the manufacturer’s warranty (if it’s five years or less), reimburse you for purchases you’re unable to return within 120 days (up to $300 per purchase and $1,000 per year) and reimburse you for lost, stolen, or damaged items (up to $10,000 per incident and $50,000 per year).

SPG Luxury Credit Card | Benefit | Extended Warranty, Purchase Protection and Return Protection

If you use the SPG Luxury Card to purchase something, American Express will add up to two years to the manufacturer’s warranty.

How to Use Marriott Rewards Points

Marriott Rewards points can be used to book nights at any of the 29 brands in the combined Marriott, Starwood and Ritz-Carlton portfolios – over 6,800 hotels in 150 countries!

Here’s what the Marriott award chart looks like. Note that prices will increase in 2019 for peak dates and top-tier properties, so if you know your travel plans for 2019, it’s best to book now – if prices later drop for your dates, you can usually change to the lower rate without penalty (but check the change/cancellation policy before booking just to be sure).

image2 3

The real sweet spot with Marriott Rewards points is the ability to transfer points to over 40 airline partners, including many airlines that don’t have other transfer partners like Alaska, American, Japan Airlines, and Lufthansa.

Almost all airlines receive points at a 3:1 ratio (3 Marriott Rewards points = 1 airline mile), and for every 60,000 points you’ll receive a 5,000-mile bonus – so, 60,000 points = 25,000 miles.

Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express Earn 75,000 points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.(Learn more)

 

Is the SPG Luxury Card Right for You?

One important factor in deciding whether to apply for this card is making sure you can get the welcome bonus. As with most American Express bonuses, you aren’t eligible to get a welcome bonus if you’ve held this card before. Given that this card didn’t exist before August 2018, that’s unlikely to be a problem.

However, because Marriott offers credit cards with both American Express and Chase, there are also restrictions based on credit cards you’ve opened with Chase. You will not be eligible for the welcome bonus if any of the following apply:

  • You currently have the Chase Ritz-Carlton Rewards card or have had it open within the past 30 days
  • You opened a Chase Marriott Rewards Premier, Premier Plus or Premier Plus Business card in the past 90 days
  • You received a welcome bonus or upgrade offer for a Chase Marriott Rewards Premier, Premier Plus or Premier Plus Business card in the past 24 months

Final Thoughts

The SPG Luxury Card may be a good fit for frequent Marriott guests who can make good use of the $300 annual statement credit, or for heavy spenders who want to shoot for the free Platinum Elite status with $75,000 in purchases.

You may also want to consider the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from Amex Personal and Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from Amex, which both have a $95 annual fee (waived for the first year) and include a free night (up to 35,000 points).


Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

Blog

Best Credit Cards: December 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. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Bryce Conway – Founder of 10xTravel.com

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 credit card offers for December 2018.

I rank these offers by looking at their signup bonuses, 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.

Quite a few changes this month as Chase has expanded the 5/24 rule to more cards and a couple of cards have gone through dramatic transformations.

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) 

And finally, I added a list of the cards to the beginning of the post for easier reading. You can simply click on “the list” or “the details” below to read more about each card.

As always, feel free to email me with questions (Bryce@10xTravel.com) about your own situation and I would be happy to help you select the best card for you.

Under 5/24:

The List

The Details

Over 5/24:

The List

The Details

 

Best Credit Cards Under 5/24

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card 50,000 bonus points after $4,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Ink Business Preferred Credit Card 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after $5,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Chase Sapphire Reserve Earn 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months(Learn more)
Ink Business Cash Credit Card $500 bonus cash back after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More
Ink Business Unlimited Credit Card $500 cash back after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card 60,000 points after $3k spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More
United Explorer Card 40,000 bonus miles after $2,000 spend in 3 months(Learn more)
Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Credit Card Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 monthsLearn More
IHG Rewards Club Premier Credit Card 80,000 points after $2,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
British Airways Visa Signature Card 50,000 Avios after $3k of purchases in the first 3 months, 25,000 Avios after $10k of purchases in the first year, additional 25,000 Avios after $20k spend in the first yearLearn More
Chase Freedom $150 cash bonus after $500 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Chase Freedom Unlimited $150 bonus after spending $500 in the first 3 months(Learn more)

 

 

 

Best Credit Cards Over 5/24

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card 50,000 bonus miles (worth $500) after spending $3,000 in the first 3 monthsLearn More
The Business Platinum Card from American Express Earn 50,000 points after you spend $10,000, an extra 25,000 points after an additional $10,000 all in the first 3 months. Terms apply.Learn More
American Express Business Gold Card Earn 4x points on 2 select business categories. Terms Apply.Learn More
Capital One Spark Miles for Business 50,000 miles after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months, an additional 150,000 miles when you spend $50,000 in 6 monthsLearn More
Capital One Spark Cash for Business $500 cash back after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months, plus earn $1,500 when you spend $50,000 in the first 6 monthsLearn More
The Platinum Card from American Express Earn 60,000 points after you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.(Learn more)
Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express Earn 75,000 points after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Terms apply.(Learn more)
Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card 125,000 Hilton Honors points after $2,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card 125,000 Hilton Points after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More
Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card $500 cash back after $3,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More

 

The Details: Best CardsUnder 5/24

 

1) Chase Sapphire Preferred  

Image result for chase sapphire preferred

Current Offer:

  • 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases 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

(Full offer details here: Learn More )

Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story: A $17,000 Adventure to the South Africa Using Points and Miles

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: 10xT Reader Alycia Moore

A $17,000 Adventure to the South Africa (with a stop in the Netherlands) using points and miles.

Every May, my boyfriend and I take a trip abroad to celebrate our anniversary. We’ve traveled to Vancouver, taken a road trip across Europe and explored Denmark. This year, we took it to a new level and visited South Africa.

The one thing that differed this year from past years is we did it for insanely cheap. We paid only $1,700 for a trip that could have cost over $17,000!

How? Points and miles, of course!

I’ve spent the last year learning about points and how to best utilize credit cards to travel. We had gotten spoiled when my boyfriend worked for an airline and had flown First Class many times together. Once he quit his job – we were back to paying for flights in an economy (boo!!) and then I found travel hacking.

Here’s a recap of our amazing trip

South Africa using points and miles | Itinerary, Expenses and Miles and Points Used

“The one thing that differed this year from past years is we did it for insanely cheap. We paid only $1,700 for a trip that could have cost over $17,000! How? Points and miles, of course!” – Alycia Moore

We had very specific dates we could travel as I’m a wedding photographer and I needed to return to the states to shoot a wedding.

For the first leg, we booked economy tickets on United from San Francisco (SFO) to Amsterdam (AMS) for about $400 each.

From there, we used 220,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points to fly round-trip from Amsterdam to Cape Town (CPT) — about a 12-hour flight. We transferred our Ultimate Rewards points to Korean Air SkyPass to book KLM business class.

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Best Credit Cards 2018 | Top Credit Card Offers November 2018
Blog

Best Credit Cards: November 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. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Bryce Conway – Founder of 10xTravel.com

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 credit card offers for November 2018.

I rank these offers by looking at their signup bonuses, 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.best credit cards 2018 | Top Credit Card Offers November 2018

Really only a couple of changes this month and plenty of cards to choose from.

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) 

And finally, I added a list of the cards to the beginning of the post for easier reading. You can simply click on “the list” or “the details” below to read more about each card.

As always, feel free to email me with questions (Bryce@10xTravel.com) about your own situation and I would be happy to help you select the best card for you.

Under 5/24:

The List

The Details

Over 5/24:

The List

The Details

Best Credit Cards Under 5/24

 

 

Best Credit Cards Over 5/24

The Details: Best CardsUnder 5/24

 

1) Chase Sapphire Preferred  

Image result for chase sapphire preferred

Current Offer:

  • 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases 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

(Full offer details here: Learn More )

Continue Reading

If you’re wanting to travel to the Maldives, Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan is one of the best ways to get there.
Best Ways, Blog

Best Ways to Fly to the Maldives Using Points and Miles

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

The Maldives is considered one of the most luxurious island destinations you can visit on earth. Seclusion, luxury and the gorgeous Instagram-worthy scenes attract people from around the world to this island nation.

Getting to the Maldives is no small feat, though. From my hometown of Houston, the Maldives islands are nearly 10,000 miles away. With that in mind, you should anticipate the trip taking at least 24 hours (trust me, it is worth it).

You won’t find any non-stop routes from the U.S. to the Maldives but there are a number of options that connect in Asia and the Middle East

Let’s explore some of the best ways to use miles and points to use to fly to the Maldives.

If you’re wanting to travel to the Maldives, Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan is one of the best ways to get there.

If you’re wanting to travel to the Maldives, Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan is one of the best ways to get there.

  1. Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
  2. American Airlines AAdvantage
  3. Air Canada Aeroplan
  4. All Nippon Airways Mileage Club
  5. Japan Airlines 

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

If you’re wanting to travel to the Maldives, Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan is one of the best ways to get there. Alaska has different award charts for different partners, so what airline you fly on will impact the amount of points you pay.

Keep in mind, with an Alaska Airlines award ticket you can only fly on Alaska Airlines flights and the one partner airline you have chosen. You cannot mix and match partners. Because of this, you may have to use a positioning flight in addition to your award ticket.

Economy Flights on Emirates

For flyers in an economy, you’ll want to use Alaska Mileage Plan to fly on Emirates. This will cost 42,500 miles each way, or 85,000 miles round-trip per person. Taxes and fees are quite low as well, starting at $25 one-way from the U.S. to the Maldives, and $92 on the return flight.

travel maldives with points and miles

Emirates flies from a number of US cities. If you can’t find availability from your hometown, try searching from these cities to the Maldives (MLE).

Boston (BOS) New York (JFK)
Chicago (ORD) Newark (EWR)
Dallas (DFW) Orlando (MCO
Ft Lauderdale (FLL) San Francisco (SFO
Houston (IAH) Seattle (SEA)
Los Angeles (LAX) Washington DC (IAD)

Emirates usually has pretty good award availability for economy class, so you shouldn’t have too big of an issue finding flights.

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chase credit card close
Blog

The Dreaded Chase Shutdown: How it Happened to Me and How to Avoid It

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: John Tunningley

So, let me start by saying this: It’s not as bad as it seems.

For any of you who might get that awful shutdown letter from Chase, take a deep breath and remember that it’s possible to get the decision reversed.

chase credit card close | chase shutdown | chase credit card shutdown | Chase review

Easily one of the scariest piece of mail I’ve ever received

Before we get into how you can prevent this heartburn, I want to talk about how I ended up being shut down and some of the mistakes I made along the way.

The Backstory

A little over a year ago, I decided to take the leap and really dive into the points and miles world. I had been passively earning points for a while and taking maybe one trip per year on points. Until this point, I probably applied for one card per year.

All that changed when I started to pay a little more attention to the 10xTravel Insider’s Facebook group I had found a few years earlier. I signed up for, and received the 100,000-point bonus for the Chase Sapphire Reserve when the card was launched (that bonus is no longer available) and the rest is history.

I was applying for a card or two every 45-90 days and played the 5/24 game perfectly. After the Chase Sapphire Reserve, I applied for the Chase Sapphire Preferred a little over a month later — this is no longer possible.

I then decided to open my first business cards and, less than two weeks after getting the Sapphire Preferred, I applied for the Chase Ink Preferred and the Bank of America Alaska Airlines Business card simultaneously, and then the Starwood Preferred Guest business card a week later.

chase shutdown

I wasn’t shut down because I had a single suspicious activity. I was shut down because in the span of a year Chase had extended me well over 6 figures in credit– I was told this repeatedly when I called to fight my case.

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best ways to get to japan with miles
Best Ways, Blog

Best Ways to Get to Japan With Miles

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Caroline Lupini

Going to Japan is a dream trip for many. The big cities, great food, natural beauty, and the koi ponds are enough to mesmerize even the most well-traveled of people.

But getting there isn’t cheap—especially if you want to fly up front. Economy tickets are often over $1,000, and business class starts at somewhere around $2,500 at any given time. Don’t even get us started on first class tickets.

Fear not! It’s actually very easy to get to Japan with points and miles. A ton of different airlines fly from major U.S. cities to Tokyo (and beyond), and you can use a number of different airline programs to book award flights.

Best Ways to Get to Japan with Points and Miles

Today we will look at 6 ways to get to Japan using points/miles

Here are six of the best ways to fly to Japan using points and miles.

  1. Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
  2. Japan Airlines (JAL) Mileage Bank
  3. All Nippon Airways (ANA) Mileage Club
  4. Air Canada Aeroplan
  5. United Airlines MileagePlus
  6. Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

One of my favorite ways to book flights to Japan is with Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan miles thanks to a few partners.

Alaska Airlines has a different award chart for each airline, and you can’t mix flights on different partners for the same award redemption. However, one-way award flights are allowed and you can include a stopover.

Here’s the one way award prices for both airlines:

AirlineEconomyBusiness ClassFirst Class
Japan Airlines42,500 Alaska miles55,000 Alaska miles70,000 Alaska miles
American Airlines40,000 Alaska miles80,000 Alaska miles110,000 Alaska miles
Alaska Air Mileage Plan | Best Ways to Get to Japan with Points and Miles

You may find yourself connecting on an Alaska Airlines flight to get to your Japan Airlines departure city or connecting on Alaska or American to pick up your American Airlines long-haul flight.

Connecting flights on Alaska Airlines can be tagged onto an award ticket, but that’s it. You may find yourself connecting on an Alaska Airlines flight to get to your Japan Airlines departure city or connecting on Alaska or American to pick up your American Airlines long-haul flight.

Remember, you can only include one partner on award bookings so you can’t include a domestic connection on American Airlines if you have a flight on Japan Airlines.

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roundtrip south Korea Taiwan points miles - business class
Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story: Roundtrip to South Korea and Taiwan

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This is a guest post by 10xT Reader Nilesh. For more examples of readers using points/miles to take amazing trips to check out our 10xT Insiders Facebook Group.

By: Bryce Conway, Founder of 10xTravel

roundtrip south Korea Taiwan points miles-Gwangandaegyo Bridge in Busan, South Korea

Gwangandaegyo Bridge in Busan, South Korea (the bridge from Black Panther)

When I first started researching the credit card points and miles world, I was definitely a skeptic. I still remember my mom, an accountant, having me sign up for my first credit card before college and to only use for emergencies.

She also stressed the importance of paying off the statement balance in full every month. I figured having one card is what responsible people did. After 7 years with that card (a non-rewards card), I decided to be bold and get a second card, the Capital One Quicksilver Card.

I wanted to kick myself for waiting so long to get a card that had the benefits of 1.5% cash back (I was still naïve to the points and miles world). As I started to travel more in my mid-20s (for fun), I began to wonder how much I’d actually have to travel to get upgrades on flights and hotels. I do not travel for work so I quickly realized that it would be nearly impossible to achieve any airline or hotel status.

In 2016, as I was dreaming of my next trip, I began reading about points and miles and I haven’t stopped collecting points since then.

Today, I want to share my biggest points redemption.

My girlfriend and I had our sights set on visiting South Korea in April 2018 for cherry blossom season and the amazing food. Since this was going to be a graduation gift, I wanted to make it extra special.

Using Miles To Fly To Asia

Bryce (10xTravel’s Founder) recommended starting with the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card 50,000 bonus points after $4,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More

I started slowly and, after hitting the minimum spend, I moved onto the Chase Sapphire Reserve (at the time you could have both). At this point, I was hooked!

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