Friday, June 1, 2012

Travel Tips To Maximize Your Reward Points

A sponsored hip + urban girl post.

It has been a year and a half since American Express invited us to join them for a delicious three course meal – served in the grocery aisle at Whole Foods! At this dinner they unveiled their shiny new Gold Rewards Card.

I wasn’t sure what to expect and I actually didn't finish my meal because I was too engrossed in the conversation. They had me at "Travel Perks"!

I applied for the Card immediately when I got home, and about four weeks later, I was taking it out for a stroll around the neighbourhood and discovering just how easy it can be to turn my everyday spending into free roundtrip flights to anywhere in the world, retail and restaurant gift cards, unique experiences and MORE. With the Gold Rewards Card, grocery, drug store, gas and travel purchases EARN DOUBLE the Membership Rewards points – getting you from home to holiday that much quicker!

Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden in Tokyo

Hello? Did someone say free flights to Los Angeles, Rio de Janeiro, Paris, Thailand and Japan?

With the Gold Rewards Card, Lisa and I have been able to live out our jet-setting dreams on modest budgets.

Go to TWO places for the price of one!

You can book a round-trip (economy) to anywhere in Canada and Continental USA for 15,000 to 25,000 Aeroplan points. A total of 60,000 to 75,000 Aeroplan points gets you to Europe, and for 75,000 or more Aeroplan points, you will find yourself across the world in Asia, Australia or the Middle East.

Psssst... did you know you can travel to two destinations without spending extra points AND this Card even pays for those airport and fuel surcharge taxes we love to hate so much?

From eating Pad Thai in Koh Samui to slurping Ramen in Shibuya, here's how I do it...

1) Thanks to the ultimate flexibility of the Card, you can call Amex and ask to transfer your Membership Rewards points 1:1 for Aeroplan (and a wealth of other frequent flyer or frequent guest programs).

2) Go to to book your trip. Make sure you select "Multi-City" which lets you chose flights to 3 different places. (Example of my recent itinerary: Flight 1 from Toronto to Bangkok, Flight 2 from Bangkok to Tokyo, Flight 3 Tokyo to Toronto.)

3) The total cost was 75,000 Aeroplan points and $0 in taxes. Well, taxes were technically $154 but I used the TripFlex option that allows me to pay for any travel on my Card with points (including fees and taxes). After I received my statement, I just called Amex and had them use the rest of my Membership Rewards points to pay it off. (100 MR points = $1 CAD)

Ready to live the Gold Life?!

American Express would love to kick start the relationship with you on a high note, so apply now and get the $150 annual fee waived for the first year you have your Card. They also offer one free supplementary Card to help you earn points faster PLUS you get a welcome bonus of 15,000 Membership Rewards points which is basically a short-haul flight to say, The Big Apple!

So stop dreaming about your next travel destination, sign-up now and realize the potential!

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