I’ve spent almost all of my points and miles life earning sign up bonuses for flexible currencies like Chase Ultimate Rewards or program specific points with Delta SkyMiles or Marriott Bonvoy. There came a time where I had to look at other options and I’ve had plenty of times where I ended up paying for a trip with cash instead of using miles. So why haven’t I signed up for a card which would help me pay for those charges?
When the Barclaycard Arrival+ card offered a 70,000 point sign up bonus, I decided it was finally time for me to sign up for a travel cash back card.
I signed up for the Barclaycard Arrival+ and earned the 70,000 points sign up bonus after spending $5,000 in the first three months. Since the card earns 2x points on all purchases, I now had 80,000 points in my account. So how can you spend these points?
Redeeming Arrival+ Points
As it turns out, it’s really easy to redeem your Arrival+ points to offset charges made to the card for travel expenses. Any travel expense over $100 can be offset with 10,000 points.
When I needed a positioning flight from Orlando to JFK to meet our Virgin Atlantic flight to London, the best flight was on Delta because we’d be able to interline our bags and connect to the international terminal using the JFK Jitney. Using SkyMiles for the trip wasn’t a great option (and therefore neither were any Delta partners) so paying cash for the tickets was the best alternative. Good thing I saved my Arrival+ points.
In order to use my Arrival+ points, all I needed to do was charge my tickets to my card. Once the tickets showed up on my account, everything is handled online.
And before you say it, yes, we paid $235.30 each for a one-way flight from Orlando to JFK. I know, I couldn’t believe that was the best price I could get either. I earned 2x points for the tickets so that was an additional 940 points in my account.
Once the charge hit, I was able to log into my account and click on the “Rewards and Benefits” tab and clicked on “Using my miles”
That brought me to a new page where I simply clicked on the “Redeem Now” tab to use my miles/points for a Travel Statement Credit
Once I clicked on that, I was brought to a page showing all my charges eligible to be offset by points. You have 120 days to claim a statement credit (but I didn’t wait that long) and the charge has to be over $100. Our Delta tickets easily qualified.
Once I clicked on “Redeem Now”, I was offered a choice of how many points I wanted to redeem. I chose to redeem the full amount of the ticket for 23,530 points.
There was one more chance to go over my redemption.
From there, I was brought to the confirmation screen. The 23,530 points were taken from my account but the 5% rebate of 1,177 points also instantly showed up in my account.
From there, I went back and repeated the process for the second ticket.
I still had points left in my account which I used to pay for our hotel night in a Hampton Inn in Fort Lauderdale.
I’m not sold on the value proposition of the Arrival+ Card since it only earns 2x points on all purchases and charges an $89 annual fee. I can earn 2% back with several other cards, like the Citi Double Cash, which charges no annual fee. Still, with a 70,000 point sign up bonus, the Arrival+ is a solid option to earn points you’re able to redeem against charges for travel expenses not covered by points and miles.
Like this post? Please share it! We have plenty more just like it and would love if you decided to hang around and clicked the button on the top (if you’re on your computer) or the bottom (if you’re on your phone/tablet) of this page to follow our blog and get emailed notifications of when we post (it’s usually just two or three times a day). Or maybe you’d like to join our Facebook group, where we talk and ask questions about travel (including Disney parks), creative ways to earn frequent flyer miles and hotel points, how to save money on or for your trips, get access to travel articles you may not see otherwise, etc. Whether you’ve read our posts before or this is the first time you’re stopping by, we’re really glad you’re here and hope you come back to visit again!
This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.
I use this card for travel purchases I can’t offset with points in other ways, like for cruises. I will break up the cost of my cruise and spread it out over several months which gives me time to accumulate the points needed to offset each payment. And, when you redeem points you get 5% of those points back, so it’s slightly better than a 2% cash back card.
True, the neverending 5% redemption bonus does make the card earn more than 2% cash back but you have to spend a decent amount on the card each year to make it worth the annual fee.