Best way to capitalize on Honeymoon?

All about maximizing your rewards!
Members share tips and tricks for getting the most miles, & points.
6 posts
irvinfitness
Platinum Member
Platinum Member
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2012 8:43 am
Website: http://irvinfitness.com
Location: Lafayette/IN

Best way to capitalize on Honeymoon?

Postby irvinfitness » Tue Oct 22, 2013 11:41 am

Up to this point, I really don't travel very much and therefore, my reward cards are focused towards cashback more than anything else and I don't have a travel card (airline, hotel, miles, etc.).

I have some time before the honeymoon (engaged, but not planning to get married for a couple years still), so about 2 years to figure out the best way to proceed or start preparing. Understandably, the sign-up bonuses and reward programs can change a lot in that amount of time...but assuming they reward programs aren't going to change too much for the most popular cards, what would be the best way to proceed?

We plan to go to a tropical island or something along the lines of Bora Bora, Tahiti, Maldives, etc.

The options that I see currently:
A) Get a card associated with an airline and start charging everything to it and use the miles to help pay for or cover the cost of the flight. (Give up current rewards by putting the majority of the spending on the new card)

B) Wait and get a card at the time of the trip and just find a good sign up bonus then. Will easily hit the spending requirement when paying for the rest of the trip and won't have to give up current rewards.

C) Other Suggestions?

Specific card suggestions might also be helpful. I'm not concerned about being denied for much of anything (except amex platinum and chase palladium...haha)

Thanks in advance!
[size=60]Chase Freedom Signature - 10k (rotating 5%)
Citi Platinum Select - 8.1k (rotating 5%)
Discover It - 12k (rotating 5%)
AMEX BCE - 20k (Groceries 3% / Gas 2% )
Regions Signature Visa - 5k
US Bank Cash+ - 5.5k (Restaurants/Fast Food 5% / Drug Stores 2%)
Navy Federal cashRewards Visa Signature - 20k (Business Purchases)
Care Credit - 6k (Vet Bills/Dentist - 0% APR)
Chase IHG Rewards (Priority Club) - 18k (Annual Night Certificate, Platinum Elite Status)

Not used except for occasional purchase with promo:
Jared - 7.5k [/size]


whit
Centurion Member
Centurion Member
 
Posts: 508
Joined: Tue Aug 13, 2013 10:04 pm
Location: ca

Postby whit » Tue Oct 22, 2013 2:37 pm

Congrats on ur engagement

Did you check to see which airlines primarily fly to borabora, tahiti, etc?

Depending on that answer mine might change, chase has some of the best cash bonus offers--I would apply for the chase sapphire preferred and get the initial bonus of 40k points, then since most of the spending is with restaurants (for me anyway) I would charge that card to earn 2 pts possible 3pts and those points are eligible to transfer over to the united mileage card--since you're not getting married for another few years --and don't travel much make sure u downgrade to sapphire so you won't have to pay AF, defeats the purpose of earning the cashback unless you swipe a lot..overseas..and then keep using it earn 2pts for every 1$ spent on travel and restaurants

When I'm about to say I do, I would apply for the united mileage, it has also an awesome bonus and again fee free for the first year, plus it has no FT fees like the sapphire preferred which by now is downgraded to sapphire and that has the FT

And I would do it with a good amount before because it takes about a week or so to transfer the points from sapphire to miles on united

Just my two cents

SClay
Platinum Member
Platinum Member
 
Posts: 85
Joined: Fri Aug 16, 2013 8:01 pm
Location: South USA

Postby SClay » Tue Oct 22, 2013 3:16 pm

Hey there!

Congrats on the engagement! I would go with option A because by the time you have your honeymoon you will most likely have racked up many, many miles which will most likely give you and your fiance round trip tickets. I would say the hardest part is picking the proper card with the proper airline. This is why you might try going with a general rewards card that gives miles for many airlines rather than just one. Some cards that do this:

USBank Flexperks Travel Rewards Visa Signature Card

It doesn't appear that this card is too common, but I think the rewards it offers are excellent. Just 20,000 Flexperks = $400 worth of airline credit. 30,000 Flexperks = $600 worth of airline credit, etc. Not only this but you get a $25 airline allowance with each reward ticket. This means you get reimbursed for things baggage fees or in-flight purchases. The card comes with a EMV chip, so you won't have to specially request one. The other good thing is, Flexperks can be used for mostly anything (note the 'Flex' part). Gift cards, airline tickets, hotels, electronics, clothing, and even statement credit! Even after your honeymoon this could be a beneficial card to you. With the current sign-up bonus, you get 20,000 Flexperks after you spend $3,500. I don't think this has a time limit, but I'm not positive. You get a FP per dollar spent, and double FP's on the category you spend the most in each month. Additionally, you gain 3,500 bonus FP's each year you spend $24,000 annually. There is a $49 annual fee. I would say that the major downside to this card is the fact that the website looks like it was constructed decades ago, and therefore is very plain and harder to navigate. I think what 'sells' this card is the point to dollar/mile conversion. Also, you get visa signature services and travel accident insurance. There are even more benefits!

United MileagePlus Explorer Card

This is a card offered from Chase. It gives the signup bonus of most airline CC's, and that is 30,000 miles after spending $1,000 in 3 months. You get a additional 10,000 bonus miles each calendar year you spend at least $25,000 on the card. The first checked bag is free for the primary card holder, as well as the companion on the same reservation. There's no foreign transaction fee. You can earn a bonus 5,000 miles after you make your first card purchase and add an authorized user to the account. Unfortunately, I am not sure of what the point to dollar conversion is, but I would assume 30,000 miles is somewhere around $400. United Airlines flys nearly everywhere, so this would be a good card if you want a specific airline card. $95 Annual Fee.

There are additional cards you might try exploring such as the Chase Sapphire and American Express SPG. Hope this helps!
Capital One Secured AU | $1851 | 10/2013
Capital One Journey | $1000 | 03/03/2016
American Express Delta Gold | Denied | 03/13/2016
Citi Bank Double Cash | $1000 | 03/13/2016
Chase Amazon Visa | Pending | 03/13/2016

irvinfitness
Platinum Member
Platinum Member
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2012 8:43 am
Website: http://irvinfitness.com
Location: Lafayette/IN

Postby irvinfitness » Tue Oct 22, 2013 3:43 pm

Thanks for the responses and all the helpful information! I did some more research and it looks like we will have to fly Air Tahiti which is partnered with Delta for Skymiles. So I'll have to do some research for the Delta cards or cards that can transfer into Skymiles and then figure out if they are worth more than what I would get if I just went for cash back (taking into account the sign up bonus as well).

Does anyone know how Delta Skymiles work? If you don't have enough miles to cover the whole flight can you use what you have to reduce the cost of the flight?
[size=60]Chase Freedom Signature - 10k (rotating 5%)

Citi Platinum Select - 8.1k (rotating 5%)

Discover It - 12k (rotating 5%)

AMEX BCE - 20k (Groceries 3% / Gas 2% )

Regions Signature Visa - 5k

US Bank Cash+ - 5.5k (Restaurants/Fast Food 5% / Drug Stores 2%)

Navy Federal cashRewards Visa Signature - 20k (Business Purchases)

Care Credit - 6k (Vet Bills/Dentist - 0% APR)

Chase IHG Rewards (Priority Club) - 18k (Annual Night Certificate, Platinum Elite Status)



Not used except for occasional purchase with promo:

Jared - 7.5k [/size]

irvinfitness
Platinum Member
Platinum Member
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2012 8:43 am
Website: http://irvinfitness.com
Location: Lafayette/IN

Postby irvinfitness » Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:25 am

irvinfitness wrote:Thanks for the responses and all the helpful information! I did some more research and it looks like we will have to fly Air Tahiti which is partnered with Delta for Skymiles. So I'll have to do some research for the Delta cards or cards that can transfer into Skymiles and then figure out if they are worth more than what I would get if I just went for cash back (taking into account the sign up bonus as well).

Does anyone know how Delta Skymiles work? If you don't have enough miles to cover the whole flight can you use what you have to reduce the cost of the flight?


Just wanted to add:
I just revisited the Air Tahiti site after seeing from some web searches that people use AAdvantage points and sure enough, they are also accepted. So I'll be researching cards for both delta and AAdvantage and from what I understand, most people generally feel the AAdvantage points are a better option.
[size=60]Chase Freedom Signature - 10k (rotating 5%)

Citi Platinum Select - 8.1k (rotating 5%)

Discover It - 12k (rotating 5%)

AMEX BCE - 20k (Groceries 3% / Gas 2% )

Regions Signature Visa - 5k

US Bank Cash+ - 5.5k (Restaurants/Fast Food 5% / Drug Stores 2%)

Navy Federal cashRewards Visa Signature - 20k (Business Purchases)

Care Credit - 6k (Vet Bills/Dentist - 0% APR)

Chase IHG Rewards (Priority Club) - 18k (Annual Night Certificate, Platinum Elite Status)



Not used except for occasional purchase with promo:

Jared - 7.5k [/size]

takeshi
Centurion Member
Centurion Member
 
Posts: 1733
Joined: Wed Jun 05, 2013 3:12 pm
Location: US

Postby takeshi » Wed Oct 23, 2013 9:45 am

irvinfitness wrote:what would be the best way to proceed?

You have to define best. Signing up for an airline card is one option but it may not be best unless you travel frequently with that airline. However, it's the airline cards that will tend to get you benefits such as free checked bags, priority boarding, etc. If you're looking for AA affiliated cards then look into Citibank.

A general travel rewards card will offer more versatility but that versatility doesn't mean much if you can't benefit from the rewards partners. You should be able to find details on rewards partners for the various general travel cards on their respective web sites.

It might help to start with who you intend to redeem your rewards with first and then work back from that.

Personally, I find both types to be useful and I use both the CSP and the UMPE (United). However, I live in a United hub city and most of my air travel is through United. CSP transfers 1:1 to United. UR points are much more versatile than MP miles so I generally keep points in my UR account and transfer when needed. The CSP also teams up very well with the Chase Freedom which has rotating 5% categories. The Freedom can't transfer points but with the CSP points transfer is possible.

irvinfitness wrote:Does anyone know how Delta Skymiles work? If you don't have enough miles to cover the whole flight can you use what you have to reduce the cost of the flight?

Again, hit their site for details:
http://www.delta.com/content/www/en_US/support/faqs/skymiles/skymiles-faqs.html

Generally, FF programs allow for points purchase but they're typically not a cost effective solution unless you're just a few points shy of the reward you're after.



Return to “Rewards”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests