TPG Readers Share Their Credit Card Perk “Magic Moments”
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Many of the stories we write at The Points Guy focus on maximizing potential earnings and the most effective techniques for booking award travel. However, the benefits of playing the points and miles game extend far beyond monetary value: one of the most rewarding perks is the opportunity to create and share timeless memories with loved ones. TPG himself has shared how his passion allowed him to score VIP seats at a Knicks game with his father, and take his mother to Chile for Mother’s Day.
To that end, we asked TPG readers to share some credit card perks that have led to awesome experiences or events that they wouldn’t have otherwise done or had access to. They gave us quite a list, including some terrific redemptions as well.
Exclusive, early, or discounted access to shows
“Amex got me 3 tickets to Hamilton in great seats for less than $200 apiece, as well as tickets to Zac Posen’s fashion show during NYFW [New York Fashion Week]. Chase Sapphire got me into the Emmys and Governor’s Ball. SPG got me into a suite and near-courtside, center seats at a Knicks game.” — Shana G.
“Mastercard took me to the Grammys!” — Jimmy K.
“Won a free trip to the Women’s World Cup of Soccer from Marriott Rewards.” — Cindy C.
“I was in London in 2012 for the Olympics. Having just graduated college, I was there for the experience, and didn’t have plans to see any Olympic events as they were so expensive. Chase opened an Olympic Lounge that I had access to with my Southwest card. It turned out to be a great venue, well located, and with great snacks and drinks. It became home base. In the lounge one day, a Chase rep came up to me and asked how many people was I with. I told her just my friend, who happened to be in the bathroom. She then asked if I wanted to go to an Olympic event in three hours. Of course I said yes. I had to sign a piece of paper saying I wouldn’t sell them, and by the time my friend left the bathroom I had two tickets to see the finals of women’s fencing in the summer Olympics.” — Nolan G.
“After calling Salt Bae’s NYC restaurant for a table opening weekend 52 times and could not get through, I decided to call Amex Concierge to see if they could help me out. The rep I spoke to called the Miami location and found out the reservation manager’s name for the NYC restaurant. The next morning, I got a voicemail confirming a table for 2 for Friday evening, opening weekend. Great customer service from AMEX.” — Will W.
“Someone [in the Amex Facebook group] said they got to hug a panda (legally), set up by concierge. That person suggested you ask for extraordinary experience suggestions every time you travel, especially internationally.” — Dejia T.
“Paid for 2015 Superbowl trip with miles and points (the ticket itself was won through lottery) and watched Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade from best view on Columbus Circle, thanks to a Delta Amex Platinum special event.” — Elena L.
“During a long flight delay at DFW, I had [a two-hour] conversation and drinks at the Centurion Lounge with a prominent US politician.” — Michael P.
Travel the world with the people they love
“Met my daughter in Rome via business class – used points for her trip around the world with Semester at Sea! Would have cost thousands!!!! Was almost free!” — Stephanie N.
“Was able to propose to my fiancée on the Great Wall of China during a 17-day Asia trip that I never would have been able to afford without points.” — Justin K.
“Using Chase [Ultimate Rewards] points to take my mom and mother-in-law to Angkor Wat. My mother-in-law was a single mom; my mom works with Holocaust survivors. Being able to give to two amazing women who give so much to others is pretty awesome.” — Lauren A.
Luxurious travel and hotel stays
“Got the Hyatt card (when they were still running 2 free nights). Stayed in the Park Hyatt Tokyo, which was running $1200+ a night at the time. For free.” — Gloria L.
“I had a TON of Hilton points when I first signed up for the AMEX [Hilton Surpass], and exchanged it for a night at the Waldorf in Amsterdam. I also got status matched from my IHG, so I am a Hilton Diamond. Literally the BEST experience ever. From the individual and private check-in desks to the opening of the indoor spa and pool just for us, even though it was after hours! Once in a lifetime experience.” — Katherine C.
Photo by Scott Legato/Getty Images for Live Nation.