Hello and happy Sunday, travel friends, both near and far. Here are some articles we’ve read from other bloggers (and other sources) that we think you may like, so we’re passing them along.
- Of all the hotel brands, the one that treats its loyalty club members the best is Hyatt. If you’re a top-tier Globalist, which is the sweet spot for the program, you’ll get suite upgrades, complimentary breakfast and waived resort fees on all stays. Lower-ranking World of Hyatt members get fee waivers for award stays. That is, unless you’re staying at a Hyatt Residence Club property, which are exempt from giving loyalty benefits, including the resort fee waiver, for all guests, including Globalists. This might be a new thing or only enforced sometimes because we weren’t charged fees for our award stay at the Hyatt Residence Club in Sedona, AZ. Since hotels are known to hide their resort fees on their website, here’s an easy way to find out how much extra you’ll be paying over the listed rate.
- I’m not much of a gambler so I don’t follow the ins and outs of online betting. However, I know that it’s become very easy to place a legal bet from your computer. A quick reminder that if you’re planning on making a bet on the Super Bowl, your credit card will likely code that transaction as a cash advance. Banks have been doing this for a while and Chase has changed the wording in its credit agreements to charge cash advance fees, which can be exorbitant, to “cash-like” transactions.
- Points in the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan program are considered the gold standard. With a wide array of partners, you can take award trips with your Alaska miles that are impossible with any other currency. The fact that Alaska is not a transfer partner of any of the major banks means you either have to earn the points through flying, have the Alaska co-brand card or purchase miles. Things have been changing at Alaska Airlines, including them becoming a part of the Oneworld alliance, and they’ve been adding Oneworld partners to their redemption partners. Their newest partner is Royal Air Maroc, another newer Oneworld addition. The problem is that the redemption value is worse than with other Oneworld partners, like American. When we’ve reached a point where AAdvantage miles are worth more than Alaska MileagePlan, it may be time to re-evaluate how much each of those points is worth.
- Marriott Bonvoy announced last year that they’d be eliminating award charts and going to a more dynamic pricing model. While awards were going to fall in a range to start, there’s been a lack of details of what those points ranges would be and what will happen if/when the ranges go away. To make things worse, Marriott has not announced a date when the new pricing model will start besides March 2022. Is that March 1st? I’d think it fitting if they did it on March 15th (Note from Sharon: Wow Joe, that’s meta). At least I have more time to get use from my Bonvoyed t-shirt.
- Remember when every airline was fighting to get slots to fly from the US to Cuba? Those times are long gone and commercial flights are a fraction of what they were and need to compete against charter operators. These companies took people before the floodgates opened and continued to operate because they understand the market, while the major airlines got it all wrong. This is why it’s strange to see that Icelandair has won approval for charter flights between Havana and Miami, Orlando and Houston. Despite complaints from the current charter operators, Icelandair will take up unused charter slots in 2022 and fly 757-200s on the routes. This is smart because the planes have a larger cargo capacity, which is how the other charter companies have continued to make money flying to Cuba
- If you’re going to travel more in 2022 and want to increase your chance of getting an upgraded hotel room, here’s a post that includes seven legit ways to get that suite. It’s a good list but it does leave out my way to get an upgraded room 100% of the time.
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