Credit Card Rewards & Points General Thread

It seems like a lot of people come up with that idea, except it is almost never, 99.98% a good idea to buy points from Southwest because they are a fixed value. Plus Southwest is about to devalue their points so they’d end up buying points for something like 1.44 each and end up with something like 1.3 x points each when it happens in January.

Even without the devalue the math doesn’t work. Besides the fact that you can’t buy points with a gift card it’s only good for airfare as you found

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That’s my thought as well, and now he’s convinced too. I’m steering him toward the ink preferred with 100k SUB and 40k referral . :slight_smile:

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While the math doesn’t work straight up, because I tend to buy flights for multiple people, and keep checking and rebooking having a large points bank is very beneficial. With points, when you book for another person, if the costs go down, the points go back into a bank. If points only went to the person who the flight was booked for, that would change the math for me.

Given that, if I’m low on points, and I can get at least 45% off, I sometimes buy points. However, right now between the SUB for the business card, and the 20k points referral from DH, I will not be buying points right now.


American Express is back to offering business cards like candy!

In the last week I’ve received an offer for 150K MR for a Platinum Biz card, 120K for a Gold Biz card, 220K for the combo of a Plat Biz and Biz Checking - and a THIRD Blue Business Plus card!

I got my first BB Plus last year, just got a 2nd one last month, and today they offered another. Wow.

I have almost no doubt if I applied they’d approve - although as I’ve mentioned before with this card, the $15K spend for the 50K MR + 30K MR is not the best return. I only got the 2nd one to use as a filler over the next 12 months when I didn’t have another sign up bonus in progress.


This is only true with using points to book, correct?

Yes. When you book with money or a gift card, it becomes a credit in the persons name.

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Status Matching

One tactic I don’t think I paid enough attention to in the past was status matching - the fact that companies will give you higher status in their points and rewards programs just because you have status with another company. Obviously - their intention is to pull your business from the other company.

There are some crazy merry-go-round tactics people have used over the last few years to jump up their status between multiple programs - something like Wyndham status getting you Caesar’s status getting MGM getting you Hyatt getting you free random foot massages while waiting for your coffee at Starbucks.

(One of those things might be wrong. Wait, come to think of it I don’t think that guy even worked at Starbucks.)

A great site to see what status match opportunities arise is (wait for it) You can browse or search for the usual travel company types using the menu at top, then see how people’s attempts fared over time and what sort of match you might be able to try for.

I’ve talked about having National Executive status from my Amex Platinum card - pretty nice program, but Exec is not the highest tier. Recently I realized there was a very easy path to jump that one more tier to Executive Elite at National.

Exec Elite status gets you all of the Exec perks, plus a few others - only one of which really means anything to me but is a good one: it takes 1 less rental credit (5) to earn a free rental day.

The Elite Guaranteed Vehicle perk sounds nice, but according to some Flyertalk threads is kind of a Seinfeld situation where they say “guaranteed vehicle” but they mean “guaranteed vehicle if we have a vehicle”, so I wouldn’t count on that too much. But, you never know.

Also, I don’t know about you, but I don’t fly into many private airports, at least on purpose, so rental car delivery in those locations is in reality more bougie than boogie.

How to check for status match methods
On the Status Matcher site, find the company whose program is one where you think juicing up your status would be helpful when traveling.

You can see at the top right it mentions which status levels in this program you might be able to match and also has a link to where to start the process. Even more useful, you can click on any of the reports at bottom to see any successes or failures and people’s reports on how they requested and how long it took to happen.

In my case: One of the other perks of my Amex Platinum is at Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status.

(Which got me a nicer view room and a terrific late 4PM checkout in August - and a surprising amount of bottled water.)

Using the National status match request form I entered the basic info it requested and attached a screen capture of my Marriott Gold Elite status card from my online Bonvoy account.

I immediately received an email confirming they received my match request - 3 days later another email arrived congratulating me on matching to Executive Elite. About 5 days later my National account reflected the new status.

No fuss, no muss, took all of 10 minutes to grab the card capture and send the request.
Worth the faster free day car rentals I should earn.

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All of this sounds great! Unfortunately, I’m still pretty much a nobody in everybody’s eyes when it comes to these programs. :confused: So, if National wants to status match me…I still end up a nobody.

It is kind of like working for free. You can multiply my salary 100 fold…but it still amounts to nothing! :slight_smile:




I book the WGA+ that way I can transfer funds to my account. In the future I may use my points to book other peoples flights that way I can go with the base WGA price but still get my points back if I have to cancel or find a lower price down the road.

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Sounds like a great plan.


Coming back here to report on a credit card airline points story.

Yesterday, I got an email that American Airlines changed our flights for June. This made our layover down to 1.25 hrs and we would’ve gotten home at midnight.

I had to call AA and they moved our flights to an earlier departure, longer layover and arriving home at 10pm. They did not charge me any change fees or additional points. I was thrilled that they were able to do this so easily - I thought this was just doable through southwest.

Always ask! It never hurts :slight_smile:


Just throwing out a reminder to anyone who was thinking about going for the Southwest Companion Pass but put it off - as of now the elevated 75K sign up bonus for their personal cards is set to expire on December 3rd, so if that’s enticing to you the time is almost nigh.

Of course, this elevated bonus also has an elevated spend to earn it - $3K in 3 months vs $1K for the “regular” bonus (assuming that it does drop back to that, as it has in past years.)

So, there is a fair argument for the tactic of waiting for the bonus to drop back down if the additional points don’t feel worth the extra $2K spend to you. I just suggest you crunch the numbers and assess how many flights you plan to book - in my case, since points do not expire and I expect to be flying 4 people most of the time, moar points = moar good. :wink:

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Ok @JJT i need some counseling on my career path here. P1&P2 just completed the chase ink 100k SUB. We’re collectively sitting on about 400k. We have no flights next year but do have road trips, so I’m inclined to jump on the Marriott boundless 5 free night SUB, and see if she can roll into that one as well. We have no WDW plans in the near future so swolphin is out.

I currently have the Sheraton in Niagara Falls (Canada side) booked for $650 cash, and it’s 63/56/55k for the same three nights. Between the total of the certificates and 28k points I’d have to burn, it seems like a bad deal.

Am I thinking about this thr wrong way or is that a bad use of points? I’m also looking at some St Louis dates and can at least get upscale properties for under 50k.

I kind of did the same thing with the Boundless myself - it is not the best thing to go for vs transferrable points, and moving transferable points to Marriott is not nearly the best value. But, I knew I had a specific use at the Swan, so did it anyway. (No regrets!)

I feel bad about pouring points on top of the certs too, though - but that doesn’t mean it is a “bad” use. I think we’re both maximizer types and get can get stuck in the “best” vs “good for us now” decision.

In general I don’t think there’s a wrong use of points, so if you get a good trip out of everything, I’d go for it!

There’s always more points to earn later. :slight_smile:

I’m still thinking about sending some points over to Marriott for a possible February break Swan trip and also looking at a hotel in Lake Placid for the same dates. Have to use my last 3 certs before May and that’s likely the only date my DD can do a trip in her senior year!

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