Travel Bargains to Consider
October 24-November 7, 2019


Aer Lingus: Two Deals, One Private ($500 Off), One Public ($300 Off)
Aer Lingus is offering a JoeSentMe members-only discount that knocks $500 roundtrip off business class travel to Ireland. To Dublin, members can get the $500 discount on roundtrips from Hartford; Minneapolis/St. Paul; Newark; Chicago/Hare; Philadelphia; and Toronto/Pearson. Also available: $500 roundtrip discounts to Shannon from Boston/Logan and New York/Kennedy. The discount is available for travel between November 1 and November 30 when you use promo code JBBUSINESS19 at Tickets must be purchased by November 15. If your goal is travel beyond Ireland to the United Kingdom or Europe, you can claim a publicly available $300 roundtrip business class discount for travel over Dublin from the same six North American cities. Europe travel is permitted between November 1 and 30, but tickets must be purchased by November 4. Use promo code BUSINESSDEAL for the Europe sale. One caveat: Aer Lingus travel beyond Ireland is in coach.


Omni Mount Washington: A Late Fall/Winter BOGO
The enormous, enormously popular and enormously expensive Omni Mount Washington Resort in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, offers thrilling views, excellent restaurants and a cornucopia of activities: a spa; golf and tennis; stables; ice skating, snowshoeing; and several types of skiing. But like many resorts, it has trouble filling the weekdays. The solution: a two-for-one BOGO sale. When you book one night at the "flexible" rate, you will get a second night free if you book by October 28. The travel window includes Sundays through Thursdays through February 13 as well as scattered Mondays. The BOGO rates do not include the $35 resort fee. As always with offers of this type, don't assume the BOGO rate is the cheapest. Check it against the price of the lowest available rate for two nights. Information: the BUY ONE, GET ONE page.

Sonesta Hotels: 60,000 Points Via Bank of America Acquisition Bonus
The under-the-radar Sonesta chain is out with its first card and the offer from Bank of America is rich: 60,000 points for spending just $1,000 in the first 90 days. You can also earn 5,000 more points for adding an authorized user in the first 90 days and a 30,000-point bonus if you spend $7,500 over the course of the first year. The $75 annual fee is waived in the first year. What do Sonesta points buy? Some of its limited-service extended-stay hotels are available for as little as 15,000 points. It has excellent resorts in sun zones (Arizona, the Caribbean, Texas, Hilton Head, Latin America) and prices are mostly in the 25,000-to-50,000 points nightly range. (Sonesta also has hotels in Boston, New Orleans, San Francisco and Philadelphia.) Information: the Bank of America SONESTA WORLD MASTERCARD page.

Qatar Airways: Price-Fixed Business Class 'Sale' Fares Rise. Kinda.
Several times this year Qatar Airways has posted putatively price-fixed business class sales to destinations around the world. Either it worked or Qatar Air's marketing team is bereft of ideas because the promotion has apparently become a comparatively permanent part of the carrier's fare structure. However, prices are rising. Qatar Air's original fixed-price structure ranged from $2,450 to $4,450 roundtrip. Now it's $3,210 to $4,710 roundtrip. But, of course, there's always less there than meets the eye. Qatar falls back on "starting at" verbiage that means every ticket is, um, "market price." Still, there's a smattering of seats at each price point. Sample fares: Four India destinations from Atlanta at $3,210 roundtrip; $3,210 from New York/JFK to Chengdu, China, or from Chicago to Manila; $3,342 on Dallas/Fort Worth to Hanoi. The best prices are available for midweek travel via Doha, Qatar Air's hub, and require a seven-day minimum stay. There's still a 90-day advance purchase requirement. One new quirk: You'll find fares below the supposed $3,210 starting price. So basically, this is an elaborate come-on. Information: the Qatar Air BUCKET LIST EXPERIENCE page.


Chase/Hyatt: $50 Statement Credit for Booking Hyatt House/Place
Over the last three years or so, Chase has been desperately working to pump up the spending volume on the Chase Hyatt and World of Hyatt cards. This fall's promo: a $50 statement credit when you spend $300 at Hyatt House or Hyatt Place properties. (If this sounds familiar it's because Chase has run the promotion before.) The current version covers stays through January 5 when you register your credit card by November 30. Information: the Chase Visa MORE REASONS TO STAY page.

Discovery: Double Stay Credits at the Global Hotel Alliance
As a grab bag of upscale and small-chain properties, the Global Hotel Alliance doesn't get much publicity. And since its loyalty program, Discovery, is about offering experience awards rather than free nights, there's even less traction in the North American market. But if you're a free-agent upmarket hotel customer--Omni Hotels is the best-known chain in these parts--Discovery could be worth discovering. Now is a time to do it since the program is offering double-stay credits--Discovery counts loyalty in nights stayed, not points--through the end of the year. Advance registration is required, of course. Information: the Discovery CREDITS page.

Best Western: Two Hotel Stays Earn a Free Night
The dear, departed Faster Free Night promotion at dear, departed Hyatt Gold Passport has occasionally popped up elsewhere. Not nearly often enough, of course, but occasionally. Latest occurrence: Two stays before November 17 earn a free night at Best Western properties. There are some quirks. You can only earn one free night during the promo period. Best Western says it'll take as much as three weeks to E-mail your award voucher. Then you'll only have 70 days to cash in on the free night. One more caveat: The promotion is only valid at BW hotels in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean. Still, two stays for a freebie seems like a no-brainer. Advance registration required, of course. Information: the Best Western REWARDS RUSH page.

Hyatt: Double and Triple World of Hyatt Points This Fall
After destroying member loyalty replacing Gold Passport with the much less rewarding World of Hyatt program, Hyatt has been desperate to get back on the frequent traveler radar. It has brought in several new chains to expand its woeful global footprint and occasionally returned to the promotion arena. This fall is one of those occasions. The Bonus Journeys promo offers triple points at Hyatt Place properties and double points at other Hyatts, Small Luxury Hotels and MGM Resorts. You can earn the bonuses until December 15 if you register in advance by October 31. One caveat: You cannot earn the bonus until your second stay in the promo period. Information: the EARN UP TO TRIPLE POINTS page.

Hilton Honors: The Endless Double Points Promo With a Card Twist
Hilton Honors points are among the least valuable currencies around--you're a "winner" if you can score a half-cent of value on awards--so Hilton has been routinely running a double points promotion for the last few years. But even that gimmick is wearing thin, so this promotional period comes with a twist: triple points if pay for your stay with an American Express Hilton card. The Power Up promotion is valid on stays from September 9 through January 5. Advance registration is required, of course. Information: the Hilton POWER UP YOUR POINTS page.

New York Hilton: Arrive Late, Leave Late, Because New York
Hotels have begun experimenting with check-in and check-out hours, but the New York Hilton may have the most unique take. The massive Rockefeller Center hotel--it has almost 1,900 guestrooms--now offers a package with a midnight check-in time and a 3 p.m. check-out time. The City That Never Sleeps package is pitched as a practical alternative for partygoers and visitors to New York who don't need a room until late-night. But it could work for late-arriving business travelers, too. The package includes two beverages at one the hotel's bars or lobby lounge and luggage storage. (Don't laugh, union hotels in Manhattan often charge for luggage storage.) Rates for the package start at $211 a night (day?), but that is misleading because the hotel imposes a destination charge, too. The package is available until December 31. Information: the Hilton ATTENTION NIGHT OWLS page.

Hotels: Maybe You'll Find Rate Savings With a Credit Card
Airline fares have been relatively flat in recent months, but hotel and resort rates continue to rise, precipitously in some destinations. Possible solution: hotel discounts offered by your credit card. Of course, all the specials below come with some caveats. Most hotels in the programs are in the luxury category. You must book directly at the card's special Web site. And you should always check that the rate you're paying is competitive with other offers.
      American Express Platinum Cards feature a Fine Hotels & Resort collection that covers more than 1,000 properties around the world. Bundled with the FHR rates are space-available room upgrades; check-in as early as noon based on availability and guaranteed 4 p.m. checkout; breakfast for two; free WiFi; and property-specific food and beverage credit or other amenity.
      Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection from Chase says it offers daily breakfast for two, free WiFi, as-available upgrades and check-in/check-out privileges. The program covers about 900 lodgings worldwide and guests receive a unique additional amenity--free meals, golf or spa treatments, airport transfers--from each property.
      Visa Signature cards claim to offer special rates at more than 900 properties. Perks include space-available upgrade; free WiFi; free breakfast for two; a $25 food and beverage credit; and late checkout.

Omni Hotels: 20-25 Percent Discounts for AAA Members
Like many chains, Omni Hotels offers a discount for AAA members. The saving is usually modest--about 5 or 10 percent--but Omni is now breaking from the pack. Use the chain's prepaid AAA rates and the saving is 20 percent at hotels in San Diego, San Francisco and Atlanta. It's even more--25 percent--in Washington, Chicago, Boston, New York, Dallas, Providence, Montreal and Toronto. INFORMATION: the Omni AAA SPECIAL PROMOTION page.


Air France: A Chaotic Premium Economy Sale
Air France's premium economy cabin is generally well-regarded, primarily because its shell seat offers a little more privacy and more personal space than traditional reclining chairs. The airline also has been fairly consistent in offering excellent pricing. But the chaos of Air France's current sale pricing shows exactly how bizarre fares really are. One example: San Francisco-Paris is an extremely attractive $1,465 roundtrip. But San Francisco-Barcelona is $2,088. In other words, a $600+ premium for the Paris-Barcelona segments. Even weirder: Washington/Dulles-Paris is pricing at an insanely high $2,434 roundtrip. But Dulles-Madrid is $2,285, less than simply flying to Paris. Because crazy ... The star of the current sale is Houston-Paris, a route where SkyTeam member Air France gets no feed from a partner since Houston/Intercontinental is a fortress hub for Star Alliance member United Airlines. The IAH-CDG fare is only $1,309 roundtrip, a genuine bargain. Yet flying Houston-Paris-Florence will cost more than $1,000 more and Copenhagen flights are literally more than double ($2,723) the IAH-CDG run. Because, of course you want to pay $1,400+ roundtrip to fly between Paris and Copenhagen. Why the chaos? Competition--or lack of it--drives how airlines price nonstops to their hubs and the connecting flights that compete with other carriers' nonstops and other airlines offering connecting flights over their hubs. That's why a Boston-Paris/CDG premium economy nonstop prices at $1,555 nonstop, but Air France thinks you will pay almost $900 more ($2,411) for the onward connection to Nice. Bottom line: Ignore the chaos. Look for a price that works for you. If the fare is great, grab it. If it stinks, shrug your shoulders and book elsewhere. Midweek fares are listed here and require a five-day minimum stay and a 28-day advance purchase. Information: Air France PREMIUM ECONOMY CLASS page.

Hainan Airlines: Yup, Roundtrip to China for $350!
Hainan Airlines, flagship carrier of the troubled HNA Group, has specialized in offering eye-popping promotions as it develops U.S.-China nonstops beyond the Beijing-Shanghai axis. One of its destinations: Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province. I've spent more on Sichuan banquets then the astounding coach price Hainan is now promoting on its Chicago-Chengdu nonstop: just $352 if you fly before November 30. Also on Hainan's roster of stunning fares: $494 from Seattle to Beijing; $635 from New York/JFK to Chengdu; and $635 from JFK to Chongqing, which by some measures is the largest city in the world. Needless to say, seats are limited at these blowout prices, but, if you've got the time and desire, buy a pair for a poor man's business class or a row of three for a couple traveling together. That's how cheap it is! By the way, Hainan flies Boeing 787-8 and 787-9 Dreamliners in 3x3x3 configuration in coach. Information: the Hainan OFFERS page.

Air Canada: Free Stopovers in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver
Air Canada tested free stopovers in Toronto several years ago and now it seems to have institutionalized the concept at three of its international hubs. If you're spending at least six hours in Toronto, Montreal or Vancouver en route to Europe or Asia, Air Canada will give you a free or discounted hotel night. This should especially appeal to U.S. travelers using Air Canada's excellent business class on transatlantic or transpacific flights. Prices are as low as $49 a night for discounted coach travelers and free for business class flyers. Information: the AIR CANADA STOPOVER page.

Air New Zealand: We Still Want You to Go to the South Pacific Cheap
Sometimes it's fun to follow these extraordinary deals as airlines test and figure out how to fill an aircraft. As you surely know by now, Air New Zealand has regularly promoted cheap business class fares to Rarotonga in the Cook Islands using its nonstop flight from Los Angeles. The eye-opening initial price was just $1,998 roundtrip. The deal has been regularly revived at fares from $1,800 and $2,500 roundtrip. Now it's back at a higher price--$2,595 roundtrip--if you travel on select dates from March through May. The higher price is justified by the fact that Air New Zealand now operates the route with its latest lie-flat business class beds. But if the price bump puts business class out of your wheelhouse, Air New Zealand has a fantastic alternative: $1,295 in its well-liked premium economy. And if you're looking for deep discounts, it's $695 roundtrip in coach. Coach and premium economy fares are available to travel as early as mid-November. The catch, as always, is that there's still one flight a week in each direction, departing late Saturday nights from LAX and late Friday nights from Rarotonga. Still, for a South Pacific trip at such a low price, those aren't tough conditions. Tickets must be purchased by October 31. You even earn frequent flyer miles. If you want background, Will Allen booked and flew Air New Zealand to Rarotonga early last year. Read his report here. Information: the Air New Zealand FLIGHTS TO COOK ISLAND page.

Finnair: A Free, Five-Day Stayover in Helsinki
As nice as Helsinki's airport in Vantaa is, Finnair can't rely solely on O&D traffic to the Finnish capital. It needs to operate Vantaa as an international hub and thus it offers extensive connections from the United States to Russia, Europe and even the Far East. And to bump up the airport's appeal as a connecting facility, Finnair has revamped and reintroduced its stay-along-the-way promotion. The new offer allows up to five days stayover in Finland. The airline has also collected a series of optional Finland travel experiences to help you fill your layover time. They include urban getaways, tours and trips in Finland's three largest cities (Helsinki, Espoo and Vantaa) as well as Lapland-related options. Prices for the add-ons start at 12 euros. One caveat: You can only claim a stayover in one direction of a roundtrip, so plan carefully. Information: the STOP & BREATHE page.

KLM: Under-the-Radar Business Class Sale Rates Worldwide
Even though KLM kicks in most of the profit of the combined Air France/KLM, the Dutch side remains distinctly under the radar when it comes to publicity. In other words, prepare to fly over its Amsterdam/Schiphol hub if you're looking for business class bargains. From New York/JFK, sample prices include $2,059 roundtrip to Frankfurt, $3,148 to Accra, Ghana, and $2,716 to Delhi. From Miami, it's $2,353 to Barcelona roundtrip and $2,541 to Delhi. From San Francisco, it's $2,358 roundtrip to Madrid and $2,919 to Chennai, India. There are similar sale prices from all 12 of KLM's U.S. gateways. The KLM site offers a handy month-by-month bar chart of the fares and then day-by-day breakdown of availability. It's a slick way to find the lowest fares. Information: the KLM BEST OFFERS page.

Etihad: Two-Day Free Stay in Abu Dhabi Through the End of the Year
Etihad Airways doesn't seem to have much of a future. It is dwarfed by its Dubai-based neighbor Emirates, its strategy of buying into weakened European airlines collapsed and the royal family that owns the carrier is losing patience with endless losses. Which is a long-winded way of explaining why Etihad is desperate to figure out an angle to get Americans to fly over Abu Dhabi. The current angle: free two-night stopover in Abu Dhabi, including lodging at several of the city's excellent hotels. The stayover needs to be booked by December 1 for travel until December 31. That offer is for coach flyers, by the way. Business and first class travelers and customers in Etihad's The Residence, the over-the-top private double cabin, have their own offer. Information: the Etihad STOPOVER IN 2019 page.

Alaska Airlines: Double Miles on Coast-to-Coast Flights Through 2019
Alaska Airlines continues to try to forge a new identity on the coast-to-coast flights it assumed in the Virgin America buy. Shorn of their white seats with 55-inch pitch and mood lighting, Alaska's flights are relying on a more-than-generous 41-inch pitch and lots of upgrades. Now another tactic: double miles on transcontinental flights until the end of the year. The only restriction: advance registration before your first transcon run. The double-miles offer is valid between San Jose, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco and East Coast airports from Boston to Fort Lauderdale. That includes New York (Kennedy and Newark) and Washington (BWI, Dulles and National) airports. The deal is also offered on routes where Alaska Air had flights before it purchased Virgin America. Information: the DOUBLE MILES COAST2COAST page.

British Airways: AARP Deal, Reduced Again, Extended Through 2020
British Airways isn't only hacking away at the quality of its in-flight product and its reputation as a premium carrier. It's also reducing the classic deals you can use to get discounts. Take its long-standing AARP deal. BA once offered as much as $400 off roundtrip. Now first and premium economy class discounts have been axed and we're left with $200 roundtrip off BA's outdated business class and $65 off its newly "densified" coach class. Also gone: the opportunity to twin the AARP discount with other BA promotions. Still, $65 or $200 off is better than a stick upside your head. And the current deal is now valid for travel until the end of 2020 if you book by January 31, 2020. The cost of entry: the $12 fee required to join AARP. And you must enter through the AARP portal to score the discounts. Information: the EXCLUSIVE AARP MEMBERS page.


Car Rental: 'Drive-In' Deals Start at $15 a Day--If You're Headed to Florida
Car rentals firms are known for offering super-low one-way rates when you help them move vehicles to seasonal high-demand markets. In spring, it's taking cars from sun destinations to the Northeast and Midwest. In the fall, however, it's the other way around. You'll get great deals if you rent one-way from cities along the East Coast and drop your car off in Florida, which needs vehicles for the winter snowbird season. Here is some of what's on offer now:
      AVIS wants you to rent cars in the Northeast by October 31 and drop them in Florida. Prices are $14.99 a day for any car up to full-size class and rentals can be as long as 14 days. Convertibles and SUVs are available at rates that start at $39.95 a day. Information: the DRIVE TO FLORIDA page.
      BUDGET has a Florida drive-in deal that is virtually identical to the Avis offer. No surprise since Budget is owned by Avis. Information: the PACK YOUR BAGS page.
      HERTZ hopes you'll pick up a car in several Northeast or MidAtlantic cities and drop it at select Florida locations. But Hertz has a complicated matrix of pick-up/drop-off cities that varies by date until December 9. You can rent for as long as 10 days. Prices start at $14.99 a day for economy-class to full-size vehicles. No specialty vehicles--SUVs, vans, convertibles--are offered. Information: the SAVE BIG page.

Amtrak: The Annual Double Days Promotion Offers, Um, Double Points
The only travel supplier that does less interesting and more predictable promos than Marriott--even Marriott must be tired of MegaBonus, you'd think--is Amtrak, the national railroad service. I've lost track of how many years the Amtrak powers-that-be have deployed the Double Days moniker in service of an equally hoary double-points offer. This year's version lasts from October 1 to November 16--considerably shorter than in years past--and awards double Guest Rewards points on as many as four train rides a day. Advance registration is required, of course. Information: the EARN TWICE page.

Enterprise: The Return of the $10-a-Day Weekend Rental, Now $3 More
Even thought it sits atop of the car-rental heap, Enterprise continues to do things differently. For starters, all locations are company owned, astonishing in this era of franchised everything. It has expanded rapidly at airports, but its roots remain in the we'll-pick-you-up local station. And many of those local stations close on Sunday with short hours on Saturday. The result: a ridiculously wonderful weekend promotion. For years, the buy-in price was $9.99 a day. This year, however, the lowest rate is $12.99 so long as you return the car on Monday. The $12.99 rate covers economy or compact cars. Larger cars are $14.99 (for intermediates) to $19.99 a day (full-size). Those prices are unchanged from previous years. All rates include 100 miles per day and are valid for rentals that start on Fridays. Best of all, prices are valid at participating local stations until May 20. You'll find some holiday blackouts, but, otherwise, it's open season for cheap cars for a weekend jaunt. The promo code is WEEKEND SPECIAL X. Information: the Enterprise GREAT WEEKEND CAR RENTAL RATES page.

National: Best Car Rent Bonus Ever Returns With New Twists
Sometimes the classics are the best and that's certainly true for National's iconic ONE TWO FREE promotion. Even though car rentals aren't the force they once were and even though National has added complicating bells and whistles over the years, the core of the promotion remains the same: Two rentals of a midsize car (this year by February 29) earn a free rental day that you can use by June 15. The points-based system offers 300 points per qualifying rental. It takes 600 points for a freebie. This year's wrinkles: You'll receive 25 points for downloading the app and 75 more points when you book using the app. Renting in Europe or Latin America will each garner a one-time 300-point bonus. There's a 300-point bonus if you rent in three countries during this year's promo period. You'll even get a one-time bonus of 300 points for adding SiriusXM to your rental. There are plenty of other points-adding touchstones this year, too. A perk missing this year: Rentals from Enterprise, National's parent company, do not earn points. Advance registration is required. Information: the EARN TO THE MAX page.

Marriott/Hertz: 2,000 Bonvoy Points for Multi-Day Rentals
With car rentals sagging in the face of widespread adoption of ride-sharing services, rental firms have been partnering up with airlines and hotels for big bonus offers. That's especially true of Hertz, which these days has a mediocre reputation thanks to repeated service glitches. If you can handle Hertz, it has teamed up with Marriott for a bushel of Bonvoy bonus points. On two-day rentals, you can earn 2,000 points. The deal is valid through the end of the year on rentals in North America, Puerto Rico, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. Use discount codes CDP#154080 and PC#204918. The offer is valid through December 31.

National/Southwest: Quadruple Rapid Rewards for Weekly Rentals
Southwest Airlines and National Car Rental have teamed up to offer a bigger payoff for rentals if you need a vehicle. Instead of the standard 600 Rapid Rewards points, a two- or three-day National rental will earn 1,200 points. Rentals of 4-6 days will earn 1,800 points. Weekly or longer rentals will score 2,400 points. To score the points, use Contract ID code 5030510. Bonus points are valid on rentals until January 31, 2020, with one-day advance reservation. By the way, if this sounds familiar, it is exactly the same deal that ran all of last year. Information: the RAPID REWARDS PROMOTIONS page.


American Express: Hey, Big Spender: Get 100,000 Points for Platinum
If you're paying attention to the smash-and-grab strategy of beating airlines and their credit cards at their increasingly rigged frequent flyer game, you jump on 100,000-point offers when they come along. American Express currently has one for its best perks card--but you've got to be a big spender to score it. The Amex offer is for 100,000 American Express Membership Rewards points for a Business Platinum Card. You'll get 50,000 points for spending $10,000 in the first three months and 50,000 more points for an additional $15,000 in spend. And remember: Amex Platinum is great for perks and airline spend (quintuple points), but weak for everything else. The annual fee is $595, higher even than the personal Platinum. That card currently offers a smaller (60,000-point) acquisition bonus.

Marriott Bonvoy: So Many Cards, So Many Acquisition Points
Marriott Bonvoy now has so many credit cards spread out between Chase and American Express that even I've lost track of which one is which. (It certainly doesn't help that all the card names seem to start with the letter "B" because, I guess, someone at Marriott is into alliteration.) But if you don't have this one--the Boundless Visa issued by Chase--now's the time to grab it. Why? The acquisition bonus has been bumped to 100,000 points if you spend $5,000 in the first three months. The annual fee is reasonable ($95) and, if you hold on to it, you receive an annual free night certificate valid at any hotel up to the 35,000-point level. Information: the Chase BONVOY BOUNDLESS page.

Chase/British Airways: 100,000 Points and a Break on Reward Fees
I've never found Avios points--the currency for British Airways, Iberia and Aer Lingus--to be a particularly good value. But some do. If you're one of those flyers, pay heed to the revised Chase British Airways Visa Signature charge. It now will kick back up to $600 a year against BA's insanely high reward fees that top the $1,000 mark on transatlantic premium class awards. You'll receive a $100 statement credit for a coach or premium economy award and $200 for a business or first class award. You can earn the statement credit three times in a year. The card's other benefits haven't changed: a 10 percent discount when you book BA paid tickets through a Chase portal and the huge 100,000-point acquisition bonus. The bonus is 50,000 points when you spend $3,000 in the first three months and 50,000 additional points when you spend a total of $20,000 in the first 12 months. The annual fee is $95 and you receive three points for spend on BA, Iberia or Aer Lingus, two points on hotel spending and one point on all other purchases. Information: the WORLD IS YOURS page.

Chase/Southwest: The Bonus Alone Gets You Close to a Companion Pass
The most prized "win" in the current frequent travel landscape is a Southwest Airlines Companion Pass. But it's not an easy win because only flying miles and credit card spend count toward the required 110,000 Rapids Rewards points. Which is why the Performance Business Credit Card, introduced this week by Chase Bank, is such an extraordinary "get." The acquisition bonus of 80,000 points counts toward the pass. To score the bonus, you'll need to spend $5,000 in the first 90 days you have the card. That's not a big hurdle, of course, but this might be: You don't qualify for the card if you have Chase's other Southwest business card or have received a bonus for that card in the last 24 months. The annual fee is $199, for which you'll also receive 9,000 points each additional year you have the card, triple points for Southwest spend and double points for charges on various social media and communications services. You'll also earn some WiFi and boarding privileges. Information: the Chase EARN 80,000 POINTS page.

Chase: Honest, Sapphire Preferred Is Better Than Capital One Venture
The decision of Capital One to get into the points-to-airline transfer game has rattled Chase Bank, whose Ultimate Rewards points are the gold standard of bank currency. The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card has suddenly upped its acquisition bonus to 60,000 points and it is clear that Chase wants to make sure you don't defect to the Capital One Venture card. How do we know? The promotion page for the acquisition bonus is literally a comparison chart between Chase and Capital One. You should have a Sapphire Preferred card, so grab one now if you don't have one. Sixty thousand points is too good to pass up. The annual fee is $95, which Chase's chart admits isn't as good as Capital One's first-year fee waiver. Information: the EARN 60,000 BONUS POINTS page.

Chase: 80,000-Point Bonus to Take an Ink Business Card
As airline frequent flyer programs get less generous, smart travelers are banking miles with banks. Chase Ultimate Rewards points, for example, offer a 1:1 transfer to United, Southwest, several international airlines and some hotel chains, too. There seems to be less risk by banking points with Chase and moving them to your programs as the good deals--or award availability--warrant. One of the current stars in the wide Chase portfolio? The Ink Business Preferred Card. For the $95 annual fee, you'll receive an acquisition bonus of 80,000 points if you spend $5,000 during the first three months. You'll also earn three points per dollar spent on travel expenditures; shipping charges; payments for cable, Internet and phone services; and some advertising purchases. Information: the 80,000 BONUS POINTS page.