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The Free-quent Flyer blog, where you find all the tips and tricks you need
to see the world like I do, for next to nothing!

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Don't sleep on the American Express Hilton Surpass $5,000 threshold bonuses through June 30, 2021

For obvious reasons since early last year I’ve been focusing my manufactured spend on cards earning cash back or rewards easily converted to cash or paid travel, and slacking off on the few remaining co-branded credit cards I carry. That allowed it to completely slip my mind that the American Express Hilton Honors Surpass card has been running a fairly...

Quick hit: easily adding all available Amex Offers (if you're an idiot, like me)

Yesterday I was excited to see Danny the Deal Guru’s post about a simple technique to quickly add all your available Amex Offers to your cards with a simple click. It worked for him and some other people who commented, but it didn’t work for me. Since I’m computer illiterate, I assumed it had something to do with my ad blocker or privacy settings, or...

Deciding where to credit Alaska, American, and JetBlue flights

A sort of interesting conundrum has arisen recently due to the coincidence of Alaska Airlines becoming a full member of the oneworld alliance, which American Airlines also belongs to, and American entering a codeshare agreement with JetBlue that allows reciprocal earning for paid flights on both airlines (redemptions are not yet available).That means...

The most valuable travel hacking resources today

Reader crispy left a very kind comment on one of my posts the other day and asked a very thought-provoking question, and instead of replying in the comments there I thought I’d break out my answer here. The reader’s question was:“With so many blogs out there that don't benefit their readers by pushing certain credit cards, do you have some blogs that...

Two increased (and one crashed) signup bonuses that caught even my attention

Long-time readers know that I don’t have much interest in signup bonuses. Obviously if there’s a card you want, it’s better to apply when the bonus is high rather than low, but that’s not something in your control. I vastly prefer to focus on what I can control: where to allocate spend, which points to earn, and when and where to redeem them.But a few...

Safeway versus Giant: Value, Scale, and Timing

As so often happens in the grocery store rewards game, when it rains it pours, with both Safeway and Giant currently offering big bonuses on the purchase of “Happy” brand gift cards. This family of gift cards can be loaded with up to $500, and each sub-brand can only be used at specific merchants, where they are processed as credit cards. They can be...

Maximize just 4 U points by pulling forward redemptions across regions

A couple weeks ago I wrote about my first experiences redeeming Safeway’s just 4 U rewards points and described how by triggering more than one reward with the same purchase, you can create a negative balance that can be spent on items that aren’t normally eligible for redemption.That’s a great way to increase the value of just 4 U points by making...

How (I think) the just 4 U double dip works

While I do my fair share of manufactured spend at Safeway, until this week I’d never actually redeemed any of their “just 4 U” loyalty points. Instead, I’ve been taking advantage of their upfront cash discounts on prepaid debit cards. Like many of you, that changed in a big way for me this week, and I’ve now redeemed enough points that I think I can...

Disappointed by Alaska Airlines IT, satisfied by their customer service

I wrote a few weeks back about the maze of rules relating to the elimination of change fees by most US carriers. My basic conclusion was that eliminating fees is better than keeping them, but that if you’re trying to claim a credit for a fall in price you should anticipate having to put some work in.That turned out to be prophetic in my own case, rebooking...

What I learned in a week messing around with MGM's fake online slots

On last week’s episode of the Manifesto, I spoke with Justin Vacula of the Hurdy Gurdy Travel Podcast about a suite of browser and mobile apps you can use to accumulate (I hesitate to say “earn”) a loyalty currency that can be redeemed for free nights, food and drink credits, or slot play at MGM casinos and entertainment companies in Las Vegas, Atlantic...

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