This is a brief news recap from last week. For faster updates, follow Miles For Family on Twitter or check the feed on the right side of the blog.
1) Probably the biggest news item of the last week is the fact that on Sunday (July 23rd), the sign-up bonus on Citi Prestige will increase to 75k points. I absolutely think it’s a good deal. After all, I signed up for this offer when it came with 50k points. Read my post Is it crazy for an Average Joe to consider Citi Prestige?
It is a bit outdated at this point, but the same principles apply. Basically, to me, it’s all about the points. It’s always about the points! Sure, all the fancy perks and travel insurance are great, but they are not the swaying factor. Bottom line: you can redeem 75k points towards $938 in flights or $750 in cash (new development). Boom. No need to analyze further. The annual fee can be covered via Southwest gift cards or other paid flights.
Of course, there is a big catch. You’ll have to spend $7,500 in 3 months in order to receive the bonus. That right there pretty much disqualifies the card for most normal folks. Citi is targeting high spenders with this product, as they should. They know that those people are the ones who will consider renewing the card and paying the monster annual fee year after year. You are eligible to get the sign-up bonus if you haven’t previously opened or closed a Thank You points earning card within the last 24 months.
So, if you have major bills AND you’ve signed up for other great offers like Chase Sapphire Preferred (read my post for more), you may want to consider it. There are certain times of the year where we could probably handle this kind of level of spending. Namely, when my home and car insurance policies renew simultaneously (the month of June). Otherwise, that’s a ton of spending to commit to.
Due to this extremely high minimum spending requirement, I don’t plan to include this offer to my Hot Deals page. I try to tailor content to normal family, and $7,500 in 3 months is just not realistic for most regular folks. However, it is definitely a good deal IF you can handle it. You may want to read this post for some ideas on meeting minimum spending requirements.
2) The application link for 50k offer on Citi Thank You Premier card is now publicly available (and added to affiliate networks). I’ve mentioned this deal last week (before it started paying commission) and said it was an excellent offer. My opinion is still the same this week. In fact, to me, this is a much bigger news item for an “average Joe” than Citi Prestige hoopla, and I plan to do a refresher post on it at some point.
3) Through 9/17/2017, you can transfer Membership Rewards points to Avios via 1:1.4 ratio. I probably wouldn’t do it speculatively, plus, you have a few months to think about it. I’ll have another post on it as it gets closer to September, but for now, read my write-up Should you take advantage of 35% bonus on transfers to Avios program? It deals with SPG, but for the most part, the same principles apply.
4) There is currently a 30k points offer on Amtrak co-branded credit card (10K points higher than affiliate offer). Apply here It’s definitely a good deal if you have upcoming Amtrak plans. Read my post on ways you can leverage the program (hat tip DoC)
5) Convert hotel points to Aeroplan before August 21st, and get 35% bonus. Link to offer Only makes sense if you convert SPG points or do Marriott travel package redemption. Basically, if you transfer 20K SPG points, you’ll end up with 33,750 Aeroplan miles. Transfer 40K SPG points, and you will get 67,500 miles. The second one makes sense if you plan on redeeming Air Canada miles for flights on United (and few other Star partners) to certain cities in Europe.
You can get 2 one-way tickets on United if you plan on flying to various popular destinations, including Amsterdam, Paris and London. See my post for details on this redemption option. If you plan on flying United within Continental US, including Alaska and Canada, it will cost you 12,500 miles one-way as long as low-level redemption is available via United.com Be aware, the transfer can take a week or longer to go through. (Hat tip DDG)
6) Get $40 in free food with Home Chef and Swagbucks. An amazing deal if you can make it work for you.
7) Zombie link for 60k miles offer on personal version of Citi AAdvantage Platinum card is alive for now. Find it in Hot Deals page, where I try to update the list of all best offers.
8) Happily booking a “standard” award ticket by Wandering Aramean. A great post which mirrors my own thoughts on the subject. So very often in this hobby we are fixated on getting “saver” level award tickets. I think it has something to do with “winning” mentality, the satisfaction of knowing that we are smarter than airlines. But at what cost?
While paying as little as possible is the goal, of course, there is plenty of value to be had by simply spending extra miles in order to avoid leaving at 5 AM or making 2 connections. When you have a family and a hard-working husband, the juice is very often worth the squeeze.
Have a good weekend, everyone!
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.