Category: Intercontinental Hotels Group

Putting Non-Bonus Category Spend on the Club Carlson Visa – A Secret Weapon to Earning Free Hotel Nights with Minimal Effort for Infrequent Travelers and Families

If you and your family

  • Only travel once or twice a year;
  • Don’t mind staying at Country Inns, Park Inns, or Radissons (for free) for your vacation or road trips;
  • Would like to minimize the number of credit cards your use on a daily basis;
  • Have no time or desire to manufacture credit card spending;

Then, there might be an easy solution. All you have to do is to put ALL your non-bonus category spending on a single hotel credit card.

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Get a Hotel Room for $35 a Night (Now through January 31, 2013) – Book Priority Club PointBreaks Hotels for 5,000 Points Only

1,000 Free Priority Club Points + Possible Official 80,000 Points Sign-up Bonus Offer for Priority Club Select Visa Card (The Most Underrated Hotel Card You Should Never Cancel!)

Are you familiar with Priority Club PointBreaks? Every two months or so, InterContinental Hotels Group (“IHG”) releases a list of hotels bookable for only 5,000 points a night. Prority Club points can be “purchased” for 0.7 cent a piece, so PointBreaks hotels essentially cost $35 net a night (no taxes or fees charged for award nights). Upscale brand InterContinental and mid-scale brands Crowne Plaza and Hotel Indigo are often included in the sale.

TravelWhimsy and I took advantage of the last PointBreaks sale and stayed at the newly renovated Hotel Indigo San Diego Del Mar while beach hopping in sunny San Diego. As platinum members (top-tier elite status is now a standard benefit for Priority Club Select Visa cardholders), we were upgraded to an ocean-view studio suite. Instead of reviewing the hotel, I am going to tell you

  • how you can get 1,000 free Priority Club points;
  • how you may get the official 80,000bonus-point offer for signing up for the Priority Club Select Visa card (current public Chase offer requires $1,000 in initial spend for 60,000 points) ;
  • and why this is one credit card you should never cancel.


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Taking Advantage of an Airport Hotel for Our Walking Tour of Santiago, Chile

This is part 12 of a series of posts devoted to our whirlwind tour of Peru & Chile.

  1. Less than $1,000 per person all-in for our 11-day tour in Peru & Chile
  2. How you can use <75,000 points to replicate our itinerary to visit Machu Picchu, Easter Island, and more
  3. How to prepare for altitude sickness in Machu Picchu & Lake Titicaca
  4. What to bring for your trip to Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, and/or Easter Island
  5. How many different sets of tickets do you have to buy for that one-day visit to Machu Picchu?
  6. How to Create Your Own Machu Picchu “Inka Trail” Experience in One Day
  7. Using the Tambo del Inka, a Starwood Luxury Collection Resort, as Your Base for Your Visit to Machu Picchu
  8. Tour Guide #1 – Sabino for Cusco, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Peru
  9. Tour Guide #2 – Silvia for Puno, Lake Titicaca, Sillustani, Peru
  10. How We Did Lima, Peru in One Day
  11. Tour Guide #3 – Sergio for Easter Island, Chile
  12. Taking Advantage of an Airport Hotel for Our Walking Tour of Santiago, Chile
  13. Airport Lounge Access + LAN International Business vs. Economy
  14. Budgeting for Your Next Big Dream Vacation
  15. You Won’t Believe What Happened on Our Way Home!

As many of you already know, Mrs. TravelByPoints is not so fond of cities. I, however, would not let an opportunity to visit the Chilean capital easily slip out of my hand, given that we did not have to use any extra miles or pay the $160-per-person visa fee flying directly from Easter Island.

In this post, I’d like to highlight three aspects of our pit stop that saved us time and money:

  1. Staying at the Holiday Inn Santiago Airport;
  2. Taking the airport bus;
  3. Joining the 4-hour free walking tour of Santiago.

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4 Nights at the Park Hyatt Paris Suites for Free? – A $6,000 Value

9 Nights of 4-, 5-star Hotel Accommodation in Italy for $300

On the heels of TravelWhimsy‘s recent post on our delayed honeymoon to Italy, this is part 3 of a 4-part series to answer some of our readers’ questions on the nitty-gritty of how the trip was booked to maximize savings.

(1) Flights
(2) Train Tickets
(3) Hotels
(4) Everything Else


Taking full advantage of some of the hotel promotions offered in late 2010, we booked ourselves into some phenomenal hotels for a total out of pocket expense of $300 (vs. a normal cost of almost $4,000).

5 Nights at 4-star Hotel Berchielli in Florence: $45 (including full breakfast & free wi-fi)
2 Nights at 5-star InterContinental de la Ville in Rome: Free
2 Nights at 5-star Park Hyatt Milan (Milan & Lake Como): $75 (annual fee for Hyatt Visa Card)


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Daily Getaways 2012 – Preview Posted for Weeks 1 & 2

Daily Getaways 2012 deals for Week 1 (Apr. 9-13, 2012) and Week 2 (Apr. 16-20, 2012) have just been posted! A few points before we begin:

  • Key Difference from Last Year: some merchants offer a pre-sale that starts at noon ET (1 hour before the normal sale starts at 1pm ET).  All you have to do is to like the merchants’ Facebook pages, and find a code posted on their wall on the morning of the sale for access to the presale from Noon to 1 PM ET.
  • Additional 10% off Published Prices: use an American Express card (prepaid or gift cards work as well).
  • Limited Quantities: hot deals can sell out within minutes, so be ready to jump on them.
  • Validity: for deals you are interested in, make sure you check the validity/expiration dates and any other restrictions.