Why points & miles superior to cash back

Wonder why banks like to offer credit card. Credit card issuers charge interest on balance, annual fees and other miscellaneous fees. They also make money from merchants who accept credit card. In the United States, the fee averages approximately 2% of transaction value. Credit card issuers certainly can make at least 2% per transaction, therefore they want to give you back some money to encourage their credit card usage. Banks like Discover offer “Cash Back” from 1% to 5% and lure people to believe that cash carries the most value. However it is not true

Points and miles have the best value if you use it wisely.

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$128 for 2 Round-Trip Airline Tickets to Hawaii but I don’t dare to buy it

Google offer has this supposedly awesome Hawaii offer. Here is the link directly from the merchant. Read on before you decide to buy it please !!!!

$128 for 2 Round-Trip Airline Tickets to Hawaii ($1,138 value)


  • Round-trip airline tickets for two people
  • Your flights are booked with major airline companies (Delta, American Airlines, US Air, JetBlue)
  • Departures from major U.S. and Canadian cities
  • Plan your perfect Hawaiian getaway
  • Refer to Terms for blackout dates
  • Minimum stay varies by departure city (select a Hawaii city). 7 day minimum for West coast cities
  • Must book accommodations at participating hotel or resort through One Stop Travel
  • Participating hotels are Sheraton Princess Kaiulani ($290 per night), Royal Lahaina Resort, Maui ($360 per night), Aloha Beach Resort, Kauai ($260 per night), Royal Kona Resort, Hawaii ($256 per night)

Why this is not a good deal?

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AA Citi Credit Card adds new benefits

I wrote about the three awesome 50k AA Citi Bank Credit Card. They are great cards because they give you

  • 50,000 mile bonus after $3,000 in purchase within the first 4 months of cardmembership
  • $100 statement credit with American airline ticket purchases within 12 months of cardmembership
  • One companion certificate ( a free round trip for your friend or family after you paid a roundtrip coach ticket on American Airlines)

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500 Southwest points for taking a survey = $8

Anyone received this survey from Southwest Airlines. They give 500 bonus points for taking it. 500 points is equivalent to $8 in Wanna getaway fare for 25 minutes of your time. They value you at about $20 per hour. Check your email to see if they send you the survey. Another post about E-reward surveys earning American Airline and Southwest Airline miles will come tomorrow. Keep posted.


Thanks so much for your continued support of Southwest Airlines® and participation in Rapid Rewards.  As part of our ongoing efforts to better serve you, we have put together a brief survey (about 25 minutes) and would appreciate your feedback.  If you are one of the first to respond, we’ll deposit 500 bonus points into your account.

Please note that access to the survey will be closed after a sufficient number of responses are received, or July 2, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. CST, whichever comes first.

Unfortunately, we cannot respond to specific Customer Service issues raised via this survey.  If you have a question or immediate concern, write to Southwest Airlines, P.O. Box 36647 – 1CR, Dallas, Texas 75235-1647 or contact us at southwest.com.

Vietnam/China/Asian travel agency lists

Where do you go to shop for airfare?

– Priceline.com, Orbitz.com, Kayak.com, Expedia.com

Do you ever buy a ticket through a travel agent?

– I do especially when I want to get a cheap ticket to Asian countries. Asian travel agencies in the US partner with big airlines to offer super discounted tickets which sometimes award you with no mileage or 50% miles. For students, cheap is good, cheap travel home is better. I compiled here a list of most Vietnamese/Chinese and other Asian travel agencies in most major cities.

Good tips

– Always buy from the agents closest to your departing airports

– Call a few to compare prices.

– Agents are knowledgeable about routings and airline connections. They could put in some complicated itinerary

– A few highlight travel agents and websites that have been working great for me

  • OneTravel.com: ticket seems to be cheap when you book an open-jaw ticket such as Hanoi-NYC, LAX-Hanoi
    • Use code GLOBE for $15 off until Sep 7, 2013
  • KingsVacation.com: I have bought tickets here at least twice, they normally have discounted AA ticket
  1. Texas (Austin/Dallas/Houston/San Antonio)
  2. California (Garden Grove, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego) 196 agents
  3. Washington DC (Eden center, Falls Church, Virginia)
  4. Seattle, Washington (International district – Chinatown – Little Saigon) – More Seattle travel agencies
  5. Boston, MA (Dorchester, Worcester, Boston)
  6. New York City
  7. Philadelphia, PA
Please comment to contribute to the list of agents you know and like

HT: Nam Pham for inspiring me

Amex giving away $10 credit for shopping at small business in Boston/Chicago/Philadelphia

American Express is giving away a $10 statement credit for their Shop Small promotion for small businesses in-store in Boston, Chicago, or Philadelphia. You have to spend +$10 on one transaction then Amex will credit you with $10.
Registration starts June 21st and the promotion runs from June 21st to July 4th.
Here are the links for all three cities: You can get the statement once even if you are registered for three different links.