I know most business travelers are American Express Platinum or Starwood (SPG) credit cardholders. However we all need to carry a Visa or MasterCard in our wallet just in case we are traveling outside of the US where AMEx isn’t accepted.
I have a Nordstrom Visa card which carries a fairly low foreign transaction fees and my perk is a $20 certificate for 2,000 points earned (2 points per $1 for Nordstrom purchases and 1 point per $1 on everything else). I found an expired Nordstrom $20 certificate today and called Nordstorm credit card to see if they can send me a replacement. I spoke to a representative, then a supervisor and neither budged. I even told them that I would cancel my card and they did not seem to care. On principle I am going to stop using this card.
Another lesson learned from this experience is not to age anything - points, certificates, etc. This sentence is actually directed to the Coach who loves to save his points
Now I have an empty credit card slot in my wallet and want to know the community’s recommendations for which is the best Visa or MasterCard to serve as my backup to my SPG AMEX. I’m leaning towards one of the Chase Visa cards at the moment.
USAirways requires you to stay active on their Dividend Miles account by either depositing or redeeming miles once every 18 months. Otherwise you’ll forfeit your USAir miles. American, United and many other major US airlines have a similar policy. Unfortunately I forgot to keep my USAir Dividends Miles active as I have been banking all my USAir flight miles on United for the past two year.
I recently received an email from USAir asking for $9 to reinstate my USAir miles. I quickly paid and got my 72,810 miles back! For those who needs to keep their USAir Dividend Miles account active, I strongly recommend you get a magazine here: USAir Dividend Miles Redemption Options
Alternative you can bank your rental car activities to your USAir Dividend Miles account. However you’ll have to pay a small mileage deposit fee to the car rental company. Here’s a previous post regarding how you can avoid paying the frequent flyer mileage charges on your rental.
Since I’ve gotten the Chase MileagePlus Explorer Credit Card, my friends and colleagues have been asking me questions about the MileagePlus Explorer cards benefits.
As a business person, sometimes we can’t use our personal cards and have to use a business card. The most popular question I get is:
Do you have to use your MileagePlus credit card when buying United tickets to obtain the benefits?
The answer is NO!
I routinely purchase my United flights with my business credit card via the United/Continental Website. I have my MileagePlus Explorer card stored into my profile, but I change my personal card to my business card upon clicking on “Purchase.” Since the MileagePlus Explorer card is in my profile, I still get the United MileagePlus Explorer benefits of free baggage and earlier boarding. Unfortunately I do not get the extra points as that would be a great loophole!