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.

Citi Cards’ Travel Protection Benefits Drop September 22

I originally wrote this post in 2017, as a part of series summarizing and comparing travel insurance offered by some of the most popular travel rewards cards. In light of big changes coming to Citi cards soon, I'm updating it. As of September 22, 2019, the Citi Prestige and ThankYou Premier cards will lose all of the travel protection benefits described in this post.

Why I Lowered the Credit Limit on my Chase Card

I just got off the phone with Chase card services. I called to lower the credit limit on my United Explorer Business Card. I am gearing up to apply for another Chase credit card, and this is a step to prepare for my next application.

If you keep up with the blog, you'll remember I'm in the midst of a plan to rake in as many Chase bonuses as I can before they decide they've had enough of me.

Routes You Can Fly to Southern South America in a Flat Bed for 45k Points

At the beginning of the week I wrote about how I recently redeemed 45,000 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles, transferred from Ultimate Rewards, to fly Delta One between Atlanta, Georgia and Buenos Aires, Argentina. Virgin Atlantic is not in an airline alliance, but one of its partners is Delta.

That is a competitive price to fly to Southern South America in Business Class, with a type of mile that is also very easy to accrue as four out of the five major transferrable points--Ultimate Rewards, Membership Rewards, ThankYou Points, and Marriott Rewards---transfer to Virgin Atlantic.

New British Airways Avios Partner Award Chart

Over a month ago I wrote about the impending devaluation of the British Airways Avios program's prices to fly partner airlines. Since then, the speculated award prices have all been confirmed.

Here is the speculative chart I included in that original post:

Flight DistanceCurrent Economy PriceMay 30 Economy Price  
Zone 1: 1 - 650*4,5006,000
Zone 2: 651 - 1,1517,5009,000
Zone 3: 1,152 - 2,00010,00011,000
Zone 4: 2,001 - 3,00012,50013,000

Note those are just the most commonly booked BA Avios partner awards.

Anatomy of an Award: 45k Virgin Atlantic Miles for Delta One to Argentina

In May I flew from Atlanta to Buenos Aires in Delta One, and only had to spend 45,000 Ultimate Rewards--transferred to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club-- to do so.

A Cost/Benefit Analysis for the Marriott Bonvoy Amex

In the spring of 2017 I opened a Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express. At the beginning of this year, that card was product changed to the Marriott Bonvoy Amex Card.

The Mariott Bonvoy Amex Card is not open for applications. Those that have one were all product changed from a Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card.

Southwest Companion Pass Master Thread

The bonuses on all of the personal Southwest cards are tiered and the same:

40,000 Rapid Rewards for spending $1,000 within three months of opening the account
An additional 20,000 Rapid Rewards for spending a total of $12,000 within 12 months of opening the account

So if you spent $12,000 within the first year on your new personal Southwest credit card, you'd end up with at least 72,000 Rapid Rewards (40k bonus, 20k bonus, and 12k points for the spend it takes to unlock those bonuses).

The new Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance

Book BA Avios Awards Before Devaluation Tomorrow

May 30 (tomorrow), the price of British Airways Avios awards flying all of the following partner airlines will increase in price:

Alaska AirlinesAir ItalyAmerican AirlinesCathay PacificFinnairJapan AirlinesLATAMMalaysia AirlinesQantasQatar AirwaysS7Sri LankanRoyal Jordanian Airlines

Award prices flying British Airways, Iberia, Aer Lingus, and Vueling will not change price as of now.

Singapore Star Alliance Award Devaluation

Singapore Krisflyer, loyalty program of Singapore Airlines, increased the price of various partner award prices on April 16, 2019. These changes weren't without notice, as they announced in March the impending devaluation. Devaluations always suck but are inevitable.

Singapore devaluations sting in a special way as they are by far the easiest mile to earn. Every major transferrable point currency--Chase Ultimate Rewards, Amex Membership Rewards, Citi Thank You Points, Capital One miles and Marriott Rewards--transfer to Singapore Krisflyer, so they are the sweetheart of foreign loyalty programs.

Thankfully the changes weren't drastic.