Why Travel?

All about maximizing your rewards!
Members share tips and tricks for getting the most miles, & points.
7 posts
Kevin86475391
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Why Travel?

Postby Kevin86475391 » Thu Feb 11, 2016 8:37 pm

One thing I've never understood about rewards cards is that the only two categories are basically cash back or travel. Cash back I understand; cash back I love. Cash can be used for anything.

...But why travel? I mean why not consumer goods? Why not gear points toward rewards/points for bills, or groceries, or entertainment more generally?

I mean obviously I'm biased, I know that. I haven't been on a plane since 1999...and that solitary experience was the only time in the last 30 years. I stay in maybe one hotel a year, for a single overnight stay. I don't even buy gas very much (my yearly gas bill is well under $250 and I often toy with the idea of quitting driving altogether). Basically I'm just short of being a shut in. I've left the house twice in the last week, and yeah that's about my average, and I stayed in the city during those excursions. So I know I'm an extreme outlier as far as not traveling goes, but still I really don't have the impression that everyone's always doing it and I don't understand why airline miles and hotel stays are this big desirable perk. Obviously I'd have no use whatsoever for them, but really, are they something so many other people love and take advantage of? Evidently so, but I just don't get it.

I know it's supposed to be some symbol of luxury...but still I just don't get it. Why not luxury goods or services? I would have a use for say points toward massages and spas or high end electronics.
Last edited by Kevin86475391 on Thu Feb 11, 2016 8:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.


Nixon
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Re: Why Travel?

Postby Nixon » Thu Feb 11, 2016 8:41 pm

Because many people have trouble saving for vacations. It's a goal to look forward to for those such inclined. I get it though, You don't like to enjoy the adventure of travel. And that's okay too...More award space for me. ;)

You can certainly redeem points for goods but the values are typically pretty shite..
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Tubpbs
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Re: Why Travel?

Postby Tubpbs » Thu Feb 11, 2016 9:20 pm

Kevin86475391 wrote:One thing I've never understood about rewards cards is that the only two categories are basically cash back or travel. Cash back I understand; cash back I love. Cash can be used for anything.

...But why travel? I mean why not consumer goods? Why not gear points toward rewards/points for bills, or groceries, or entertainment more generally?

I mean obviously I'm biased, I know that. I haven't been on a plane since 1999...and that solitary experience was the only time in the last 30 years. I stay in maybe one hotel a year, for a single overnight stay. I don't even buy gas very much (my yearly gas bill is well under $250 and I often toy with the idea of quitting driving altogether). Basically I'm just short of being a shut in. I've left the house twice in the last week, and yeah that's about my average, and I stayed in the city during those excursions. So I know I'm an extreme outlier as far as not traveling goes, but still I really don't have the impression that everyone's always doing it and I don't understand why airline miles and hotel stays are this big desirable perk. Obviously I'd have no use whatsoever for them, but really, are they something so many other people love and take advantage of? Evidently so, but I just don't get it.

I know it's supposed to be some symbol of luxury...but still I just don't get it. Why not luxury goods or services? I would have a use for say points toward massages and spas or high end electronics.



Your ending combined with what Nixon said. Travel = Luxury.
Amex - BCP, Platinum, Business Gold
BoA - BankAmericard Cash Rewards
Chase - Freedom, CSP, RC, Ink Plus
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CarefulBuilder14
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Re: Why Travel?

Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Thu Feb 11, 2016 9:55 pm

People, generally speaking, like hotel rooms and plane tickets.

An empty hotel room or plane seat generates no revenue, anyway, so giving points for award rooms and seats costs hotels and airlines very little when they can limit award availability.

It's a nice overlap of demand and supply.
Wallet: Prestige CSP SchwabPlat Freedom It Hyatt SallieMae AAPlat
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kdm31091
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Re: Why Travel?

Postby kdm31091 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 8:08 am

Most people don't save up for vacations well, like Nixon said, so the idea that their dream vacation is just a few points away can be alluring. Of course, you can do the same thing with cash back rewards, but some people don't have the discipline without the redemption being basically "forced" to travel.

You also get better value out of some travel redemptions vs cash back. For me, it's not worth it, as I rarely fly, and the beach I go to in the summer doesn't have chain hotels where a travel cobranded card would benefit me. But for heavily travelers, or just people who want to save up specifically for a big flight or something, I see the value.

Kevin86475391
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Re: Why Travel?

Postby Kevin86475391 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 8:46 am

That certainly all makes sense. Thanks for the perspective, you guys.

Eh, I'll definitely be sticking with my cash back cards though :ppp

takeshi
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Re: Why Travel?

Postby takeshi » Fri Feb 12, 2016 9:44 am

Kevin86475391 wrote:So I know I'm an extreme outlier as far as not traveling goes, but still I really don't have the impression that everyone's always doing it and I don't understand why airline miles and hotel stays are this big desirable perk. Obviously I'd have no use whatsoever for them, but really, are they something so many other people love and take advantage of? Evidently so, but I just don't get it.

Seems like you answered your own question, just not with the specifics you were hoping for. Popular items (on any topic -- not just credit cards) are popular because the majority have an interest in them. If you're one of the outliers then you will not get it. Popular doesn't mean "everyone". Its just means a significant majority.

For some travel is a luxury. For some it's not so much luxury as much as something that they do often. Even those who prefer travel rewards are not all identical.



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