I just referred my wife to this card as this is not a current public offer.

In March of 2018, I applied and was approved for Delta Business Platinum American Express card. The offer was 70k points, plus $100 credit on Delta in the first 3 months, for a $195 annual fee. Just recently there was the same public offer, but that expired a few weeks ago. However I have a referral for the same 70k points after meeting $3k spend in the first 3 months (no $100 credit though). Plus I get 10k bonus points. So if course I referred my wife. There are a whole bunch of benefits with this card like 10k MQMs, companion certificate, and free checked bags. Of course the 70k points is what draws people in though.


The application took a whole 2 minutes and my wife was put in pending stage with a request to call AMEX to verify business information. We have had a small personal business we pay taxes on since 2010. My wife hates having to call in to verify information though. The next day I wrote down some of the general company information like revenue, income, why she needs another card, etc. Then we made the call to AMEX. After confirming her identity, she was instantly approved without having to talk to a live person! We have both have had several business cards in the past few years, and it seems like AMEX just wants to quickly verify your information and phone number to approve.(I have had to call AMEX on my business cards as well in the past)

Think you don’t have a business- well have you sold something on eBay this year? or held a garage sale? You don’t need millions of dollars in revenue to have a business. You don’t need a Tax ID number either, just your social security number is fine.

After using the card we will easily have 75k Delta miles. These miles can be used for 3 round trip economy tickets in the US, or a one way business class ticket to London, Paris or other destinations in Europe.

JFK-LHR openings in Business Class

In 2016, our family took  our vacation together using Delta Miles to fly on Virgin Atlantic’s Upper Class to London. Our kids have been spoiled since then.


If you are interested in this non-public offer, here is the link!




We just booked a trip for next summer to Tahiti for the 4 of us! (I will be posting details soon on how we did it on miles and points) One of the hardest items to overcome is schedule and finding flights for 4 people with miles and points, and trying to do it in business class. We have a few other week long trips we want to plan for 2019 so trying to keep vacation day use to minimum. Finding flights on points and miles that can accommodate this schedule can be hard.  We were looking at a few different options.

Our first option was going to South Africa on Qatar Airways and then onto Mauritius. You can use 75k AA miles to fly from a city such as Houston-Qatar-Johannesburg in Business. Then stay there a few days and buy a cheap flight to Mauritius. Then I was looking at Air France to get back to the states. The Houston-Qatar leg especially interested me because they have Q suites on this route which would be awesome for the 4 of us.


I found a few flights that would work, but not on the exact dates I needed. It can be very frustrating when you find flights that are oh so close, but don’t work.  Something like a flight leaving Houston on July 4th, arriving in Qatar at 5pm on July 5, and then they only award availability they have is a flight from Qatar to Johannesburg on July 5th that departs at 1pm (so doesn’t work) and the next available award flight isn’t until July 10th…. So close but not close enough. The best way to search for Award flights on Qatar is using the British Airways Website.


Then to get to South Africa you have to do 2 separate searches. One for the the US-Qatar, and then again from Qatar to South Africa. You then have to call AA to book it and they can piece it together and their routing will only charge you 75k miles for business. I spent a few hours looking at multiple combinations form all the US gateways, but couldn’t make it perfect. If I would have been more flexible, I could have found something that would have worked.

So then I pieced together a complete European vacation. I have never used Air Canada Aeroplan miles before but they have some great value. 55k miles one way to Europe in business is one of the lowest redemptions out there. (We would have transferred in 220k miles from our American Express Membership Award account) I found a direct flight from Chicago to Zurich on the exact date I wanted for 4 people. (Aeroplan can get even better because on round trip tickets they allow 2 stopovers and an open jaw, however I found 0 availability coming back to Europe for the dates I needed)

This is for the 4 of us

My plan was to stay in Zurich a couple nights, then buy a cheap 1 way ticket to Mallorca, Spain.


After spending a few nights in Mallorca, buy a cheap 1 way ticket to Lisbon, Portugal.


Then spend a few nights there before coming back to the US. There is business availability from Lisbon-London-US for 57.5k AA miles and about $300 a person. While the fees are high, I have seen a lot worst. I am OK with paying high fees if it’s for the dates and flight choices I want.

Just a screenshot example, there are better connections and cities out there too.


So then we had to make a decision of Europe or Tahiti. Slept on it, and knew that we will be back to Europe several times over the next few years. Tahiti is only a once in every 10 years to a lifetime place to go. Tahiti here we come!


I just accidentally found a little loophole with obtaining and using the free Delta companion ticket offered on Delta’s Platinum American Express Credit Cards.

In July 2016 I applied and was approved for the Delta Personal Platinum Card. At the time it had and offer for 60k bonus miles with 10k MQMs and a $100 Delta credit after meeting the $3k min spend with a $195 annual fee.  (The current offer is only about 35k miles, they increase every few months though). One of the perks is a free companion certificate each year upon renewal of the card.


Who likes annual fees? I sure don’t! Even though a companion certificate for $195 isn’t bad, there are some restrictions on it so I was not planning on obtaining it.

When my annual fee hit I had planned on calling and cancelling my credit card. I had automatic payments setup though for like the 15th of the month even though my payment wasn’t due till like the 25. I had already paid the annual fee from the automatic payment and then called a few days later to cancel the card and get the annual fee refunded. I got my refund and everything was good. Off to the next credit card as usual for spending.

Well then a few weeks later I noticed I have a companion certificate in the Delta Wallet. I guess my paying the annual fee triggered the certificate, yet I still got the fee refunded. I have been wanting to use it but there are some restrictions, specifically it can only be used on L,U,T,X, and V fares and you cant use it with any other discounts or vouchers. (So I cant use it with my large Voucher I received from here.) It was expiring at the end of August so I finally decided to use it. Found some okay flights on those fare codes ((not my ideal ones but they work) to LA when my favorite baseball team will be in town (STL Cardinals) and decided to book for myself and a friend.


Now I still get luckier. I get to the payment field and I am trying to pay with my Citi Prestige card as they have the best trip protection benefit. That payment wouldn’t go through. It shows only AMEX cards are accepted. Well I have a few so I tried my AMEX Platinum card that gives me 5x points on airfare. Well that card won’t work either and that’s when I realize it has to be a Delta Platinum card that’s used for payment when using the companion certificate. Well I look at my credit card spreadsheet and my safe that has all my credit cards and realize in March of 2018 I obtained a Delta AMEX Business Platinum Card when they had an offer for 70k miles, 10k MQMs, $100 credit for $195 annual fee. (and I do have a small business since 2010) I hadn’t used that card for a while but it was still active so I was able to use that and it worked!

Now I anticipated that the only fees I would have to pay would be the $5.60 security fees. However i had about another $40 in taxes I had to pay for. Not too bad though!



Our family loves skiing. Or I should say I love it, my son enjoys it, my daughter has a blast, and my wife will go along if she has to. This will be my sons 6th year skiing and he is getting pretty good. Soon he will be better than me (which isn’t saying too much). Skiing is not usually a cheap activity. Between transportation, lodging, lift tickets, clothing, ski rentals, and slopeside drinks. But it can be affordable if you know the right deals.


Well right now you can book a hotel room for a great deal using your Hilton points in Breckenridge. The Doubletree Breckenridge over the holiday break is just 60k points a night. When staying 5 nights, the 5th night is free. So its 240k points for 5 nights in a 2 king bed room. This would normally cost ya $2,463. So a value just over 1 cent per point with Hilton is a great deal. As a Diamond member we will also get free breakfast. They used to have a resort fee which included parking. It looks like that has changed and there is not resort fee, but parking is $35 a night….




Right now the American Express Hilton Ascend, Aspire, and Business credit cards all have 100k point offers after meeting the min spend requirements. Hilton also just started to allow points to be transferred between household members so between 2 people it can be very easy to accumulate 240k points.

hilton ascend

If skiing is not your thing, the Doubletree is a great location to be able to walk quickly to all the shops and restaurants and winter blazed streets of Breckenridge. It’s also a 5 minute drive to Carter park which has a great bring your own sled hill. Doubletree also provide a shuttle service around the town.


I have stayed at this hotel numerous time over the past 6 years. It’s not the fanciest hotel, but its 50 yards from being able to put your skis on and ski down to the base of peak 9. Or you can walk another 50 yards up to other chair lifts. Typically they don’t have award nights available over winter break, and never seen it open with 2 king beds for points. So this may not last long. The rooms are quite large and offer plenty of room for a family’s ski items. They include a small mini fridge. So in the past we have bought a few drinks and sandwich making items to save a few dollars while eating lunch on the mountain. They also have ski storage which is nice and convenient. Then of course all the amenities of a normal Doubletree like their free cookies, restaurant, indoor pool, and several outdoor hot tubs. Hopefully they have their free s’mores at 4 which my son still talks about. They have a lot of seasonal staff so their service can be hit and miss based on past experiences. However the location is ideal!


Now of course you have to be able to get out there somehow. This is the last year I will have the Southwest Companion Pass where another person flies for free (well $5.60 security fee) when I fly. We still have some unused travel credits from gift cards we have bought with our AMEX Platinum cards and CITI Prestige Cards to get the $200 airline reimbursement each year. Plus we have points to cover the rest.  So our flights are basically covered for as well.


Now we are just debating which ski pass to get. We have had EPIC passes in the past and they are great deal to buy now before you show up as lift tickets are over $150 a person the day off. I am debating on the 4 day pass (if this is my only ski trip this winter), the 7 day pass (which means I would unfortunately have to go again) or the EPIC local pass. The local pass is the same price as the 7 day pass but local has restrictions and 7 day has no restrictions. However the local pass has no restrictions on Breckenridge so its very tempting. Just have to figure out if I would go again and when and where….



For the past few days there has been a lot of buzz around Amazon offering 20% off up to $100 when paying with AMEX membership reward points. Well I finally took advantage of it and saved my $100! I had a few items I needed like air filters and some new pyrex bowls, and then bought a bunch of AMEX gift cards because they are always useful to make sure I got the full $100.


Now in order to do this you have to register first via this link. Some people may not be eligible. You have to have a AMEX card with membership rewards available to be eligible. You have to make sure you click pay with an AMEX card and then use a least one of your AMEX points to pay. It will default to use points for the entire purchase, but that is not a good value. Just switch it to 1 point.


Now when I originally went though it yesterday, it wasn’t applying 20% off to the entire purchase as you can see below. I then realized that some or my purchases did not follow the rules from the aforementioned link and were not fulfilled by Amazon. I got some new items and then boom, $100 off.


My wife’s AMEX account is also linked to Amazon so we will be finding a few more things to buy to save 20%.

I first read this via

Credit card info stolen from Hilton. Thank you AMEX Fraud Protection

On Tuesday I received a text from American Express asking for an immediate response to if i had a $800 purchase on Latam Airways. I don’t like calling the number from a text so I called the number on back of my Platinum AMEX card. After putting in my account information that I was transferred to a live person.  They informed me the fraud alert wasn’t on my Platinum Card, but on my Hilton AMEX Card.  I have only had this card for about 2 months. I immediately confirmed that those charges were not mine and they informed me of 2 other charges from an hour ago on American Airlines for 1k euros. Again I confirmed those weren’t mine and they said no problem sir, we will take care of the rest as your are protected with AMEX.


As I have written about before, I have a lot of open credit cards and I check them every few days. I have had cases of fraud like this before, and I don’t get too worried about it because with 99% of credit cards, you are protected. The annoying thing is having to cancel this card and then get another one- which I received in 2 days from AMEX. Some people get really worked up, but it happens and will probably happen again with some other credit card down the road.


I was also trying to meet a min spend to get Hilton bonus points. With these Fraudulent charges, I actually met it and received the points. it will be interesting to see what happens when the statement closes and those charges aren’t there…. I will still make sure to meet the actual min spend by the required time.

Now I was down in South America for 2 weeks and had this card on me at all times. I only used it 2 times during the entire trip though. Both for stays at Hilton hotels. Once at the Hilton in Guayaquil, and the other time at the Waldorf Astoria in Panama. As you can see, Guayaquil is where some of the flights on the fraud charges were originating from.  I will be contacting Hilton as well to let them know and see what their response is.



A few weeks ago I wrote about how I applied for 2 AMEX cards and was instantly approved. This increased my AMEX card total to 5 cards. I received those cards about a week later and am already putting them to good use. At about the same time I also received the letter below from AMEX describing how they adjusted my credit line on my AMEX Blue card to be able to approve me for a very large AMEX Delta Platinum Card.  I think this Blue card was my very first real credit card from 18 years ago. I have a $100 quarterly automatic billing for some bug spray to it to keep it open. So I didn’t mind the credit line being decreased.

What I find interesting though is that AMEX did this automatically. So often I will get a credit card application put in pending status. Then I have to call and spend time talking to service reps who say they cant extend any more credit line to me. Then after a long conversation they usually will switch around credit lines to approve this. This was apparently­ all done behind the scenes and save me a few phone calls. Thanks you AMEX!



A few days ago our family met all the min spend requirements from credit cards we opened in my wife’s name in January. So that meant it was time to apply for some new cards! Always a fun day. Since we have had numerous cards before, the list of good cards out there is getting smaller and smaller available to my wife and I. I decided to apply for 2 AMEX Business cards- the Delta Platinum Business Card and the Hilton Business Card.

I applied for the Delta Platinum Business Card first. It comes with 70k miles after spending $3k in the first 3 months. Plus 10k MQMs after hitting the min spend. I am Delta Gold, but last year I received about 200k miles from flying Delta, but only about 60k MQMs. I really need the MQMs to try to hit Platinum this year. It also comes with a $100 statement credit after a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. As well as a $195 annual fee. I was able to login to my AMEX account in which it already had most of my information filled out. I hit submit and 10 seconds later it said Congrats, you are approved!


The Hilton Business Card because it has a pretty high 100k bonus after meeting $3k in 3 months and another $1k in 6 months. Plus it comes with a free annual night after hitting $15k in a calendar year. (haven’t decided if i am going to try to hit that or not.) It also gives you 12x points at Hilton hotels and 6x at restaurants and gas stations. It comes with a Hilton Gold status, but I am already Diamond through March 2020 so thats not too useful to me. I used a different browser to apply for this one and again logged into my AMEX account, hit submit and this time about 30 seconds later I got the approval!


I already have 3 current AMEX cards, and 2 of them are business cards. I was a little surprised that I was instantly approved for both of these new ones. I have been a AMEX cardmember since 2000, and I do have a very small online business that I have paid taxes for the past 8 years.

One of the best parts of this is that the last time I applied for new cards was in Sept 2017. (in Jan of 18, it was just my wife’s turn) Since these are both new AMEX Bus cards that don’t count against Chase 5/24, I am getting closer to getting under the 5/24 limit. I never really thought I would see that day. The next round of applications will be for my wife so unless there are some new large irresistible bonuses that come out, I may be eligible for more Chase cards soon!

A quick 10k bonus MR points thanks to AMEX offers

Most of you probably already know what AMEX offers are. If you have an AMEX card, you get periodic offers of either getting a statement credit or bonus Membership Reward points. after spending so much at a certain vendor.

Well I was planning on going to an OKC thunder game and needed last minute tickets. I was already looking at StubHub and Ticketmaster and the tickets I wanted were going for around $300 total. I just happened to look at AMEX offers that day and noticed there was an offer to receive 10k MR points after spending $300 at While they had some extra service fees, the tickets I wanted ended up being $329. The extra $29 is easily worth 10k AMEX MRs. Most people value AMEX MR points at 1.5 or 2 cents, so its easily worth $150. (although I can stretch them to 5 cents if redeeming for an intl first class flight.)


The MR bonus points posted 2 days after I bought the tickets. Already went to the game and there were no problems.