A free vacation? It’s just a few cards away!
For those that haven’t taken advantage of credit card signups, the complexity of earning points and miles can be daunting at first. And you can’t blame folks for feeling this way – just take a look at my Monday post and you can see how complicated the math behind loyalty programs can get! So, for today I just want to show a few examples for the uninitiated that demonstrate how easy it can be to earn yourself a free trip – airfare and hotel costs covered – just by applying for a credit card or two.
The United MileagePlus Explorer card is currently offering 50,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on the card in the first three months of card membership. With those 50,000 points you’ll be able to take two one-way flights anywhere within the contiguous United States. Alternatively, if you’d rather have a bonus with a lower spending requirement, you can opt for the JetBlue Plus card which provides 30,000 TrueBlue miles after just $1,000 in spending within 90 days – enough to cover most round-trip itineraries, including many to Caribbean destinations such as Aruba.
Both of these cards provide enough points to cover most round-trip itineraries in economy, and many even leave you with with a nice sum of points to spare if you can manage to fly on off-peak flights!
Meanwhile for hotels, you could apply for the Hyatt Credit Card which requires just $1,000 in spending in three months, but provides two free nights at any Hyatt. If there isn’t a Hyatt at your preferred destination, you could also consider the Starwood Preferred Guest Card which offers 25,000 Starpoints after spending $3,000 – enough points to redeem for 2-3 nights in a mid-tier hotel, or even more nights if you book at budget-conscious properties.
If you’re traveling with a friend, family member, or companion, this gets even better since you can both apply for cards and then combine your rewards! For example, a trip with your significant other could be doubled in length to four days if you both apply for the Hyatt card. Alternatively, a 50,000 Starpoints haul across two accounts could book a truly luxurious long weekend retreat at some of Starwood’s (or Marriott’s!) top properties, including Ritz-Carlton and Le Meridien locations.