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I’ve been reading the Beginner’s Guide pretty carefully but find I am still uncertain of what my strategy should be. My husband and I just want to fly to Europe two or three times a year. We fly from O’Hare and generally like to go to one spot and stay put for a couple of weeks so the travel is pretty straightforward.
We just both got the SPG card because of the special offer but now I am wondering if the AmEx Everyday Preferred wouldn’t be better for daily spend. When we do buy domestic flights (2-4 times a year) should those go on an airline card or something else? We have no points at all right now so it seems to me that we need to develop a good base by taking advantage of various card offers but honestly I am not sure how to do that without getting my points spread out all over the place. I don’t want to be over-diversified, do I?
Thanks for any advice you can offer. In the meantime I will continue enjoying the blog.
[USER=809]@Jane[/USER] – welcome and sorry we’ve missed your question so far.
The Starpoints earned by the SPG card and the Membership Rewards (MR) points earned by the Everyday Preferred can compliment each other. Since the SPG card has no bonus categories (except for SPG hotels) I think using the EP card at places where you can get bonuses absolutely makes sense. That includes a lot of “regular spend” places like grocery stores, gas stations and restaurants. And if you make sure to use your card 30 times per month you get a 50% bonus in MRs. See [URL=’http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.com/2015/05/13/using-the-amex-everyday-preferred-card-takes-discipline/’]this post[/URL] that Lucky wrote back in May.
Just be sure to realize that MRs don’t have the same (or as many) transfer partners as SPG does. Not to say that they can’t work well together but if, for example, you wanted to use Alaska miles for a flight on Emirates, you can only transfer SPG points to Alaska, not MRs.
SPG points do NOT transfer instantly to the airlines while with MRs, if you transfer them to a domestic airline (DL) there are small fees involved.
If you haven’t already, take a look at the Frequent Miler’s Master Transfer list that’s found in [URL=’http://frequentmiler.boardingarea.com/2014/06/24/transfer-partner-master-list/’]this post[/URL]. (The post is old, but the spreadsheet in the link is up to date.) It’s a nice visual way to easily see where the SPG points and MRs can work together to get you the flights you want. Just remember to be sure there are award seats available on your desired flights before transferring your points.
Hope that gives you a start and let us know if you have follow-up questions.
Hi Jane- I would look at Ben’s primer on travel points etc also the Citi Pretige card that mentions in his recent post on LH sounds really good. Hope that helps