Issuing Banks Rules for Approvals and New Bonuses

This is a living post, continuously updated over time as the miles and points hobby evolves. They change the rules and we have to stay on top of them.
Today I've updated the section about Citi cards to reflect the new sign up bonus eligibility timelines for their AAdvantage co-branded credit cards. If I've left something important out please feel free to let me know in the comments.

Vote for MileValue as Best Miles & Points Blog

MileValue was nominated by USA Today as the Best Miles-and-Points Blog. Through November 6, 2017 at noon ET, you can vote for MileValue here.

You can vote once per day, just by clicking vote without having to give any personal information.

Winning this beauty contest would be nice, but I already feel like a winner. I’ve written a miles-and-points blog for almost five years. My job is to help people achieve lifelong travel dreams.

How to Book a RTW Trip in 2017. Use These Underpriced Awards Around the World.

Until 2014, the best way to use miles to book a round-the-world (RTW) trip was to save a lot of one mileage currency and book a special RTW award with those miles.

New United Free One Way Rules as of October 2016

Edited 12/19/16 because of this change.

United Free One Ways are now more powerful than ever. A few weeks ago, United tried to cripple free one ways, but has unintentionally made the new rule that you can add a free one way almost anywhere in the world onto your international awards.

First, a short history lesson.

On October 6, 2016, United drastically changed its stopover rules. Before you could basically book any three one way awards as a "roundtrip award," using your stopover to tack on a free one way or to make a Three One Ways award.

Free Award Night or Pay for Hotel Promo? My Thought Process

This is about the math behind one of my hotel stays. But the same concept applies to all your hotel stays and flights when deciding between an award and cash.

This week I stayed in the Holiday Inn Express in Belgrade, Serbia. The hotel came to my attention because it was a PointBreaks hotel, which means I could buy points for about $29 and book it "for free" with those points. But I ended up paying $61 for a paid night instead to get a big bonus from the current IHG Rewards promo.

Which Is The Best Amex Partner from Here to There?

I get questions all the time like this:
Hi, I have a million American Express Membership Rewards/Chase Ultimate Rewards/Citi ThankYou Points, what is the best transfer partner to go from [here] to [there.]
There are basically two ways to answer the question:

Look at award charts of all the points' transfer partners and then look for award space using the cheapest miles. I used this method to suggest to my friend that he transfer his Membership Rewards to Flying Blue miles to get from Denver to Tel Aviv.

The Top 11 Most Valuable Miles to Me

A Delta mile does not equal an Alaska Airlines mile. The former has a more expensive award chart, imposes fuel surcharges in more situations, and has access to less Saver award space.

All miles are worth different amounts.

In this post, I'll list the top 11 most valuable miles to me and my valuation for those miles. First a few caveats:

I am not including transferable points.

Best Way to Get to Israel with Miles

This is a post I am writing to illuminate how my friend can get from Denver to Tel Aviv with Amex Membership Rewards.

Top Ten Online Travel Hacking Resources & How to Use Them

Your ability to book affordable travel depends heavily on your knowledge of the tools available to help you.

The Beginning Section of a Manual I Created for Award Booking

A few years ago, I created a manual for award booking. I thought the best way to organize it was to explain the key concepts of all awards in the beginning, and then explain each major program in detail afterwards. Here is the first section of the manual--nine key concepts of all award bookings. I've edited it slightly today to make sure it is up to date.

Are there any other key concepts you would add to a manual of award booking?
Key Concept 1
Each type of miles has its own rules.