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  • 8:28 am on June 6, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    > Cash tickets on Student Universe for July 25 Hanoi-New York are $700, but on Amex Portal it’s over $1,000.

    It’s too late to buy the ticket. Unlike cash tickets, lowest priced award tickets are available in limited quantities. Usually 0-4 seats for business class, and ~20 seats in economy. The remaining seats are priced dynamically, meaning usually much higher. That’s the delta prices you are seeing. (Also delta very rarely makes award tickets available at lowest price).

    The best time to buy a July 2024 ticket was between July 2023 and September of 2023. The window of opportunity to grab economy seats is usually longer (sometimes they never run out), but your target date is in the middle of summer, which is when everyone travels. So they run out, and they run out fast.

    If you now search for award seats for May 2025-June 2035, you can find:

    Hanoi-Taipei-New York EVA Air Economy using 47k Lifemiles+$80 (Lifemiles is an Avianca Airlines points program, and Amex points transfers there)

    Hanoi-Tokyo-New York in JAL Economy using 38k American Airlines miles+$64

    But seats priced at that range sold out for this summer.

    Your last chance is something people call T-14 tickets. Starting 14 days before flight, when airlines feel their airplane is too empty and seats aren’t selling well, they dump the seats into award seat inventory and suddenly you can grab some seats at lowest price. But that may or may not happen for the specific date that you need and it’s not guaranteed.

    On the other hand, if you are very flexible with your travel dates (“eh I would prefer to fly on Thursday but I’m okay with flying Wednesday, or Friday, or Saturday, or Tuesday… It’s all good as long as it’s that week” kind of attitude), then a T-14 strategy can yield a decent chance of success. I just ran a search for the week spanning 6/7-6/14/24 and I see the two flights I mentioned above plus a Air France Hanoi-Paris-Newark flight for 35k Air France points plus $210, a Hanoi-Hong Kong-JFK flight in Cathay for same price as JAL above etc.

    One last note, you can’t transfer Amex points to American Airlines so the AA examples are meaningless to you. I’m just mentioning them to illustrate the general ideas that I’m talking about.

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  • 3:33 pm on April 20, 2024 Permalink | Reply  


    • Southwest Performance Approval
    • Hilton Aspire Approval
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  • 8:28 am on March 5, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    Alaska Business approval

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  • 9:20 pm on February 25, 2024 Permalink | Reply  

    A 3-night trip in Las Vegas on 12/25 trying to use various hotel credits and status benefits.

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    • Anonymous 10:35 pm on February 25, 2024 Permalink | Reply

      Hi ,

      In recent niche research, I noticed your site has several keywords ranking on Google’s second page for multiple critical keywords. These could easily to rise to the first page, significantly boosting your traffic. Interested in the list?

      Darius D.

      • Yongho Kim 11:32 am on February 26, 2024 Permalink | Reply

        no thanks. I actually have robots.txt set up to block search engines from using this website

  • 9:37 am on February 12, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    Trying to figure out how to redeem points for maximum value across different cc
    byu/K0N-ARTIST inawardtravel

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  • 8:13 am on February 9, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    How do you get the employee offer?

    From time to time Amex runs employee card promotions for BBP, Biz Gold, and Biz Plat. “Add an employee card for your business card, and spend a minimum of X amount for Yk rewards” is their promo. The latest promo ended recently.

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  • 10:31 am on January 27, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    > If you think $200 is a “measly” amount, why do you care about statement credit clawbacks?

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  • 6:35 am on January 27, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    > We are skeptical that once all credit-card expenses are taken into account, you are not actually saving any money on your expensive business class ticket.

    Your surcharge comment is interesting in multiple ways.

    First, I’m surprised that major merchants in Australia put a surcharge just for accepting Amex. Second, I’m surprised that the surcharge is so TINY (less than 1%???). Third, it shows that you are not approaching credit card points via the mainstream way at r/churning, which is chasing sign-up bonuses.

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  • 1:23 pm on January 16, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    Approved on 1/16 for Alaska Personal hopefully for 75k.

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  • 10:20 am on January 5, 2024 Permalink | Reply

    Using CIC -> Gift Card -> Gift of College -> Student Loan Servicer

    Using the Chase Ink Cash in this way nets 10k points for every $2,000 spent, resulting in $59.50 in fees. That’s in addition to the sign-up bonus.

    For comparison, if the CIC was used directly through GoC, it would net 2k points for every $2,000 (515×3 + 455) spent, resulting in about $55 in fees. So it’s an extra 24k UR points.

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