Narrowing Down Travel Rewards Credit Cards

points cards overwhelm

Points Cards Overwhelm

I have a lot of points cards. A lot. I have so many I don’t even remember which clubs I belong to anymore. And I don’t know how many points I have, what I can do with them, or when/if they expire.

It’s a problem.

For a while now I’ve wanted to slim down my points memberships and choose a few I understand and will actually use. But how do you know which ones you’ll use and which ones give you the best value for your time and energy?

I’m overwhelmed to say the least.

Canada's top rewards cards

Canada’s Top Rewards Cards from 2013 via Rewards Canada

As I’ve waded through the different points options I’ve found ranking sites helpful, they do all the work and I can read the results. Thanks! My husband and I went through our options and decided for us travel rewards were the most important and since he charges a lot of expenses for work…a travel credit card was a good option.

In fact we were even able to narrow down to Aeroplan Canada, which feels so good. I went ahead and unsubscribed from all my other points emails and began looking for ways to optimize our points collecting.

Mileage balance: 7,219

I received my monthly newsletter the other night and was pumped to see all the different ways I could collect points. And then I went to check if I had enough points to, like, go anywhere.

Not with 7,219 points I can’t. But not to worry! The newsletter gave me lots of ways to pump up my points STAT.

aeroplan-options-galore

Whoa. Lots of options. Feeling overwhelmed…which option is best for me…

I’ve noticed a lot of television advertising lately about travel rewards credit cards. There are so many options and while it is overwhelming I’m happy there is competition. In my mind the more companies there are competing for my loyalty then the better the rewards will be. Right? That’s logical, right? Anybody?

Well, we’ll see. I’m setting a goal of taking a springtime trip completely on points. I think that’s enough time to go from 7,219 to…how many points do you need for two round-trip tickets around the world anyway?

This post was compensated but don’t worry, the story is original (and mine! And also true!)

Do I Dare Go All-Inclusive?

Before you judge me, remember I’m the girl who has really only ever travelled on a shoestring. And I prefer second-hand clothes to new ones. And I’m not above dumpster diving.

What I’m trying to say is I’m not completely sure I’d be comfortable at an all-inclusive where your every need is met and all you have to do is enjoy yourself. And yet…I’m tempted.

I’m willing to plead ignorance. This commercial actually sums up my knowledge on the whole thing. And yes, I know it’s from 1983 but that’s what comes to mind when I think of “all inclusive.”

Do I dare go all-inclusive?

So to ease my 1980s nightmare I asked around a bit. It wasn’t difficult to find support for the all-inclusive thing. Enthusiastic support. And really it does sound pretty swank. Especially if you’re looking for a gorgeous getaway in the sun, an open bar, and not a care in the world.

Actually that sounds extremely tempting.

And now I’ve discovered a way to combine my crippling frugality with my passion to travel and my newfound desire to do nothing: booking last-minute vacations.

I like the whole idea of travelling standby and I’ve tried a few times to convince my husband to embark on a last-minute adventure to parts unknown (he’s on the fence, but I think he’ll see it my way eventually), or at least a last-minute hotel room, but I never really considered booking a last-minute vacation package.

In my wildest imaginings I’ve only got as far as booking a $20 flight and ending up somewhere in the mid-western States needing to figure it out from there. This option seems much more comfortable.

So I searched around a bit and here is my pick. You know, if I was leaving tomorrow.

For my dream vacation I chose a place called Buccaneer’s Creek, which I’ve never heard of but I think my husband would like because it sounds piratey. As well it has one of those pools where it looks like you’re falling off the edge of the world. You know what I mean? Love those photos. I’ve never experienced it for myself though.

But now that I look closer I see this resort isn’t on the last-minute deal list. But the Bahamas are and that place looks awesome!

I “pretended” (secretly hoping I’d accidentally book it) to sign us up but unfortunately since the package includes airfare, the website wants you to try out a whole bunch of dates and airports and I think it would just be easier to call the 888 number. But far less spontaneous.

And it’s a heck of a lot harder to convince your husband you accidentally gave your credit card number to the travel agent than claiming “the Internet did it.”