How I Made Over $1,000 on My Travel Credit Card

It's the Best Deal Out There

Author: The Traveling Professor/Thursday, December 29, 2016/Categories: Save on Airfare

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Here is what interested The Traveling Professor regarding an offer I received regarding the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card:

  • $300 Travel Credit
  • 100,000 points
  • Priority Pass for Airport Lounge Access

The requirements to get the bonuses were:

  • Sign up and get card
  • Spend $4,000 on the card
  • Register for the Priority Pass
  • Pay $450

The first thing I did was buy (with the card) a plane ticket for $459.   When I got the statement, I noticed $300 (for the travel credit) was taken off the bill.  OK, so now I'm still down about $150.

A few weeks later, I received my Priority Pass lounge access pass.  I also have the Admiral's Club lounge card from American Airlines.  That costs me $350 a year, so I figure the Priority Pass lounge pass is an equivalent value.

After spending $4,000 on the card, I had 100,000 points available to me.  I needed to do some personal holiday air travel plans for me and my travel partner.   Using points, I booked air from Hartford to Chattanooga, TN, then flights from Chattanooga to Dallas and back to Hartford.  This expensive holiday travel would have cost me $1,213 but it was all taken care of with about 75,000 points from my Chase Card.  I did not spend a penny for those flights.  PLUS I earned my American Airlines miles and was able to take advantage of all my American Airlines elite status benefits.  

You are required to book all flights using points on the Chase website.  I have heard that the fares are priced higher on the Chase website than the airlines website.  However, when I priced the flights on both the Chase website and the American Airlines site, the fares were identical.

Another point to be made is that when I selected flights, it allowed me to select any flight that was available on the American Airlines site.  In other words, there are no restrictions on flight availability like when I try to book with miles.

So now, when you add it all up, I spent $450 for the card, got a $300 travel credit, and got over $1,200 in free flights, I am way ahead of the game with this card.  I also have airport lounge access and about 25,000 points left.

Good deal?  What do you think?

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