CITIbank AApologizes

Citibank apologizes
Image Copyright Uris (English Wikipedia)

I don’t really get the bloggers who claim to earn gazillions of frequent flyer miles by shopping via online shopping portals.

Sure I try to rack up a few extra points when shopping online, but more often than not I find that bonus offers are not honored, probably due to some fault of my own.

For instance, if you enter a coupon code found elsewhere your bonus points will not be credited.  If you already have items waiting in your shopping cart, you might not earn the extra points.  If sales post after the promotion closes, you may be out of luck.

CITIbank Apologizes for Shopping Portal Payout Error

The AAdvantage shopping portal was offering a holiday promo some months back.  I never received the bonus points, but past experience has taught me that it might not be worth the effort to try to straighten it out.

Today I received a surprising email from Citibank.  Here’s what it said:

We didn’t give you the correct incentive
You recently enrolled in an offer to earn 3X AAdvantage® miles for eligible online purchases through March 31, 2015. After reviewing your Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Visa® card account, we found we didn’t give you the correct bonus incentive for the qualifying purchases made during the offer period.

What we’re doing to fix this
We added 562 AAdvantage® miles to your card account. You’ll see this adjustment on your card statement within two billing periods.

The email is referring to this offer for 3x extra points for purchases made via the AAdvantage shopping portal:

Bonus AA miles  for Shopping Online
Bonus AA miles for Shopping Online

Well CITIbank, apology accepted.

Many of the online shopping portals are run by a company called Cartera.  You can read more about their business model here.  There is a whole thread on Flyer Talk discussing the ins and outs of online shopping portals.

Do you ever find that you are not credited what you expect from your online purchases?

Burn Your Club Carlson Points at Melbourne Beach Radisson

Mermaid fountain at entrance to Radisson Suites Oceanfront in Melbourne Beach, Florida
Mermaid fountain at entrance to Radisson Suite Hotel Oceanfront in Melbourne Beach, Florida

If you have Club Carlson points to burn and you need to burn them fast — consider  the Radisson Suite Hotel  Oceanfront in Melbourne Beach, Florida.

Melbourne Beach — where’s that?  

That’s the question I was asked repeatedly whenever I mentioned our Spring Break trip to Florida.

Melbourne Beach is on a barrier island about half an hour south of Cape Canaveral.  This area along the eastern seaboard in Florida is known as the “Space Coast.”  Melbourne Beach is a low key beach town.  There’s no boardwalk or amusements — just a broad sandy beach, the wind, the waves, and the Atlantic Ocean.

Melbourne Beach is a quiet residential area with four high rise hotels, some condos and and garden apartments, and single family homes.  The beach is very clean and not crowded at all.  Day visitors will find free beach parking at a municipal park next door to the Radisson.

The view from my balcony at the Radisson Suite Hotel Oceanfront
The view from our balcony at the Radisson Suite Hotel Oceanfront

Burn Your Club Carlson Points at the Radisson Suite  Oceanfront in Melbourne, Florida

The Radisson Suite Hotel Oceanfront is a gem of a property, and is especially well suited to families traveling with kids.  It was built in 1984 as condos, but was immediately purchased by Radisson for use as a hotel.

The view from my balcony at the Radisson Suites Hotel Oceanfront

We used 44,000 Club Carlson points to stay for two nights at this magnificent property where every room is a suite and has a balcony overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.  Through the end of May 2015, holders of the Club Carlson credit card can get a second night free when redeeming award nights.

As a Club Carlson Gold member (due to having the credit card), I landed a top floor suite. The welcome gift was a bowl full of fruit and pastries.

The “rooms” are actually more like one bedroom apartments.  Both the bedroom and large living room have floor to ceiling windows overlooking the ocean, and all the rooms have an oceanfront balcony.  The decor is modern.  Each room has a king sized sleep number bed in the bedroom, and a queen-sized sofa bed in the living room.  I especially loved that the floors were travertine tile, which is so much cleaner than carpet.

I didn’t take any pictures of our suite because the panoramic photos on the hotel website are so drop dead gorgeous.  But I can tell you this:  every single room in this hotel is has a full oceanfront view.  Every room is a large suite — modern, clean, and comfortable.

There is a pool, hot tub, sundeck, and poolside bar.  Two beach chairs and an umbrella rent for $20 a day, but beach toys are free to borrow.  My only concern:  no lifeguard on the beach.

If you make your reservations before the end of May 2015, you can have a two-night stay in a gorgeous oceanfront all-suites hotel for just 44,000 points.  Award room availability is wide open through December 2016.

The view from my balcony at the Radisson Suite Hotel Oceanfront
The view of the bay from the room entrance at the Radisson Suite Hotel Oceanfront

There is a shopping center with a Walmart and a supermarket across the street from the hotel.  The Walmart features a large selection of beach items at the front of the store.  There’s also a pizza place, a Thai restaurant, and a Friendly’s.

Did I mention that there are laundry machines at the Radisson?  That is a necessity for our family when traveling with kids.

I am grateful to The Deal Mommy for introducing me to this place.

Everything is super easy, relaxed and convenient.

Where to Eat in Melbourne Florida

If you love seafood you can’t do better than Shells of Melbourne, which features about a dozen different kinds of fresh fish and seafood daily.  Shells of Melbourne is a family style restaurant located inland, near the Melbourne Mall.

Another place we tried was Squid Lips, located just over the bridge on the mainland.  It’s a rambling bayside bar and restaurant, with a view of the fishing pier.  The virgin coladas are highly recommended!

 

Which Hotel Chain Has the Most Hotels in Paris?

"Paris is Always a Good Idea'  Audrey HepburnNow that our plane tickets to Paris are booked, I need to make some hotel reservations.

To the extent possible, I’d like to leverage my hotel points to book as many free nights as possible.

To that end, I started by exploring availability in the the two programs where I have the most points:  Club Carlson and IHG.

Not surprisingly, award availability for our travel dates was hit or miss.

Which Hotel Chain has the Most Hotels in Paris?

There are quite a few Holiday Inns and other IHG hotels in Paris, but only 4 Club Carlson Radisson Blu hotels.

Are these the best loyalty programs if you are looking for free nights for your Paris holiday?

If you read a number of other travel blogs, you’ve probably heard about the Park Hyatt Vendome, and how you can stay there for free by opening a Chase Hyatt credit card.

There are 2,400 hotels in Paris.  Why do all the bloggers stay at the same place?

On the one hand, I’d really love to stay in a boutique hotel on the Left Bank or the Marais.  On the other hand, I need to economize.

I went to Award Mapper to get a rough count of which chains have hotels that you can book for points in Paris.  I was surprised by what I found.

Best Western Has 42 Hotels in Central Paris

Best Western Hotels in Paris
Best Western Hotels in Paris via Award Mapper

Here are the tallies I came up with for the major hotel chains:

Best Western:  42

Choice:  15

Club Carlson:  4

Hilton:  1

Hyatt:  4

Intercontinental (IHG):  14

Marriott:  9

Starwood (SPG):  4

Wyndham:  2

Best Western has the most properties — 42 hotels in many different neighborhoods in Paris.  Hilton has the fewest — just one hotel.  Hyatt, Starwood, and Club Carlson each have four hotels.

Are you surprised by these results?  Were you able to book award stays in Paris?  

Where to Stay Within Walking Distance to Universal Studios, Orlando

Hogwarts Castle
Hogwarts Castle
Photo by Rstoplabe14 at en.wikipedia

A visit to Harry Potter World was on the agenda for our recent spring break trip to Florida.

Onsite hotels at Universal Studios Orlando were very expensive in early April.

I wanted to stay as close as possible in an offsite hotel, so that we could easily walk to Universal Studios.  I knew that we would be doing a lot of walking once we got to the park.

Many offsite hotels offer shuttle services, but these can be quite limited in terms of the hours and frequency of service, and their capacity is capped

Chain Hotels Across the Street from Universal Orlando
Stay with points at chain hotels across the street from Universal Orlando

Which Offsite Hotels are Closest to Universal Orlando?

A lot of hotel properties  advertise that they are within walking distance of Universal Studios.

But the Doubletree (by Hilton at the entrance of Universal Studios) is the absolute closest offsite hotel to the main gate.

The map above indicates where the hotel sits in relation to the massive parking garage at the entrance to Universal.

How Many Points Do You Need for a Free Night at a Hotel Near Universal Studios Orlando?

Several hotels are within a long block of the Doubletree.  Most of these are chain hotels that participate in the major hotel rewards programs.

Here’s how many points you need for a free night at each of these hotels:

  • Fairfield Inn & Suites — 25K points
  • Best Western Plus Universal Inn — 16K points
  • Doubletree — 20K points
  • Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites — 25K points
  • Hyatt Place — 8K points

I imagine these hotels offer similar amenities such as outdoor pools and free breakfast.

But there a lot of variability in the number of points you need for an award stay.

What’s All the Fuss About Hyatt’s Gold Passport Rewards Program

Hyatt Place Universal Orlando -- 8,000 Points
Hyatt Place Universal Orlando — 8,000 Points

At 8,000 points, Hyatt Place Orlando Universal is the clear winner in terms of least number of points needed for a free night.

A lot of travel bloggers rave about Hyatt’s loyalty program — Hyatt Gold Passport.  I never really understood the appeal.

In my mind, Hyatt Hotels are bland business class hotels in office parks or other sub-optimum locations.

Clearly, that’s an overgeneralization.

Now, after completing a stay near Universal Orlando during spring break, I finally get what all the Hyatt fuss is about.

In a word:  value.

The obvious value here was the 8,000 point redemption cost for the Hyatt Place.  Because we there on a peak travel day, the rates at the hotel were very high — $200 a night.  While the rates fluctuate according to demand, the points cost is generally fixed.  (A major exception is Starwood resorts, which sometimes jack up the points cost during high season.)

Hyatt Place Orlando Universal — My Take

Typical room at Hyatt Place Universal Orlando
Typical room at Hyatt Place Universal Orlando –2 full size beds and a pullout couch

The Hyatt Place is about a 15-minute walk to the entrance of the Islands of Adventure or Universal Orlando Theme Park.  

This hotel had very high ratings on TripAdvisor, so I decided to book it for two nights.  I transferred the points to Hyatt from the Chase Ultimate Rewards Program.

We chose a room on an upper floor with a view of Universal Studios, so we could watch the fireworks at night.  The room was well designed and functional.  The room had two beds and a pullout couch so it was perfect for myself, my daughter, and her friend.

The free hot breakfast was generous and varied, with real Starbucks coffee and Tazo tea.

The small outdoor pool was not crowded, despite the hotel operating at full capacity.

There was a convenient Universal ticket desk in the hotel lobby.

TGIF is right next door for teen-friendly meal options.

I would be loathe to pay $200 per night for this hotel, but for 8,000 points, it’s a good deal.

How I Leveraged My Bathroom Renovation Into a Spring Break Trip to Florida

Spring Break in Florida
Spring break in Florida, here we come!

Our 40-year old townhouse is in desperate need of repairs.

What with the original bathrooms, and leaks springing left and right, it was past time to take action.  Of course if you defer your home repairs like we did, you find yourself facing some major expenses all at once.

Luckily, I met Carlos the contractor when I was out walking the dog one day.  Carlos can fix anything and is super nice and flexible.  Our arrangement was that we would pay Carlos for the labor, and that we would purchase the materials.

Since I knew we would be racking up charges, I saw this as an easy way to meet the minimum spend requirements on some new travel rewards credit cards.

My Travel Rewards Credit Card Applications

My remodeled bathroom
My remodeled bathroom

It had been over six months since I had applied for a travel rewards credit card, and there were several cards with large sign-up bonuses on my wish list.

Purchasing materials for the home renovation would be an easy way to meet hefty initial spend requirements.

Warning — if you don’t pay your credit cards in full and on time every month, you should not be in this game!

Barclay’s U.S. Air Dividend Miles Card

The Barclay’s U.S. Air Dividend Miles credit card was offering 50K bonus miles after the first purchase and payment of the annual fee.  This card was on the verge of retirement due to the US Air – American Airlines merger.  I had applied once before, and was not approved, so this was my last ditch effort to rack up 50K miles before the merger.  I applied, and was denied once again, for having too many recent credit card applications.  Fortunately, the bank did not do a hard pull of my credit report, so no skin off my back.  This card is no longer being offered.

Chase’s Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card offers 40K bonus points after completing a minimum spend requirement of $3,000 within the first three months.  You can get an additional 5,000 Ultimate Reward Points by adding an authorized user.  Ultimate Rewards points are great because they are easily transferred to a variety of frequent flyer programs.  The card pays two times points on travel and restaurants.  There is a $95 annual fee that is waived the first year.  I wrote yesterday how I used 45,000 Chase Ultimate Reward points earned from opening the Sapphire Preferred credit card to finance our Amtrak Auto Train trip to Florida.

Capital One’s Venture Card

The Capital One Venture rewards card offers 40,000 bonus points to new applicants who meet a minimum spend of $3,000 within the first three months.  The card pays two times points on all purchases, and carries a $59 annual fee which is waived the first year.  After meeting the initial spend requirement, I had 46,000 points which could be used to offset $460 in travel expenses.  The Venture card is not a favorite among travel bloggers — which I think is crazy because it has a decent sign-up bonus, earns a great rate on all spending, allows flexible redemptions for travel expenses (while still earning frequent flyer miles on your purchases.)  I have read numerous reports of people having success in getting the annual fee waived, sometimes for two years in a row.

Gift Card Purchases for Home Improvement Stores

The last method I used to accrue free travel to Florida was to purchase gift cards for Home Depot and Lowes at an office supply store with my Chase Ink Bold business credit card.  The Ink Bold card earns 5x Ultimate Reward Points for purchases at at office supply stores like Staples and Office Depot and Amazon.  My contractor used these gift cards to purchase supplies for the renovation, and we used the cards to order plumbing parts, medicine cabinets, light fixtures and more.  When possible, we shopped through an online shopping portal to earn extra points and miles for our purchases.

A “Free” Trip to Florida for Spring Break

My daughter is graduating from high school this year so this was our last chance to take a spring break trip together.  She asked if she could invite a friend to come along, a request that was easy to accommodate thanks to miles and points.

Our trip was not completely free, of course.  But through the strategies outlined above, and prior accrual of points, we were able to enjoy our round trip travel on the Auto Train and four out of five nights hotels in Florida for free.

To compare current credit card offers, click here.  If you need a good contractor, drop me a line.

One-Two-Punch: Club Carlson Devalues BOGO International Stays

Club Carlson Used to offer  "Stay 2 Nights, Get 2 Free.
Club Carlson used to offer two free nights after a two night stay.

Club Carlson has made a second drastic devaluation  to their hotel loyalty program, on the heels of the  announcement last week that Club Carlson will no longer offer two award nights for the price of one for credit card holders.

The new devaluation affects credit card holders who were hoping to book vacations at Club Carlson properties in Europe, the Middle East, or Africa taking advantage of the Stay 2 Nights, Get 2 Free offer that had been in effect for paid weekend stays for the last several years.  This was one of the best and most under-appreciated deals in the miles and points world.  It wasn’t universally available, but you could often find it for long weekend stays at Radisson hotels in smaller European capitals.

Stay 2 Get 1 Free Offer is a Significant Downgrade

The new offer is a significant downgrade from the prior offer:  now you get one, rather than two free nights added on to a paid stay of two nights in a standard room at participating Radisson Blu and Park Inn by Radisson hotels in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.  The offer is available for check-ins on Friday or Saturday (Thursday or Friday for hotels in Middle East).  You must register in advance here, and book and stay by June 28, 2015.  Use the promo code WBUY2F2 when booking your stay.

Unlike the previous offer, this offer expires prior to the peak summer travel season.  The Stay One Night, Get One free offer also has been eliminated.

Stay 5 Paid Nights, Get 6th Free

A much more limited number of Club Carlson properties are participating in a Stay 5 Nights, Get 6th Free promotion running now through June 28, 2015.  Like the Stay 2 Get 1 Free offer, you must register in advance.

 Questioning Club Carlson Loyalty

Now that Club Carlson has gutted the most valuable aspects of their credit card/loyalty program, customers must seriously reevaluate the utility of this program for their travel needs.

If you open a new Club Carlson credit card, you can earn 85,000 points after meeting a hefty minimum spend requirement, and paying the annual fee of $75 for a personal account, or $60 for a business account.  That used to be enough for four free nights at a Radisson hotel like the Radisson Martinique in New York City.  Now, it would be enough for just one free night.

The program awards 40,000 points upon payment of the next annual fee on your anniversary.  Club Carlson has indicated that with the program changes coming, they will offer a free night at a U.S. property for those that pay the annual fee on their anniversary.  That’s like paying $75 or $60 for two “free” nights, which may or may not be competitive depending on where you use the points.

What do you think?  Is there still value in the Club Carlson program for you after these two major devaluations?

Where to Eat in Salt Lake City, and Why

India House dishes are beautifully presented.
India House dishes are sensational.

We stumbled upon India House in Sandy, Utah via one of those restaurant business card displays you often see in hotel lobbies.  They were offering a 10 or 15 percent discount, so we thought we’d give it a try.  Sandy is about 15 minutes south of downtown Salt Lake City.

If you are traveling along the I-15 corridor in Utah you will find a lot of chain hotels and franchise restaurants.  Think Texas Roadhouse, Olive Garden, or Chili’s.  At home and when traveling, we prefer small, local, ethnic restaurants, whether Thai, Afghan, Indian, Mexican, or whatever.

India House is an unassuming family run restaurant, with the most diverse selection of naan I have ever seen.  They run a lunch buffet on weekdays for $8.99, including soup, salad, dessert and an array of fragrant vegetarian selections and chicken kormas.  You can also order from the menu.  The dishes are flavorful and reasonably priced.

I can recommend the Peshwari Naan — a homemade bread with a marzipan like filling.  The lamb saag and butter chicken are delightful too.

But don’t take my word for it — read the reviews on Yelp here.

India House has two other things to recommend it:

1) It is part of at the Rewards Dining program — allowing you to earn frequent flyer miles for eating out.

2) It is next door to an eclectic antique consignment shop — really 20 shops in one as they rent space to various vendors.

Earn 2,500 Delta SkyMiles Miles for Eating at India House in Salt Lake City

It was a great surprise to discover that we had earned United Mileage Plus  frequent flyer miles for our lunch at India House.  This restaurant participates in the Rewards Dining network.  You can register to earn miles with your choice of frequent flyer programs.

Early in the year is a good time to take advantage of bonus offers for signing up with various Rewards Dining programs.  Different airlines have different offers.  The most lucrative offer right now for new sign-ups is with the Delta Skymiles rewards dining program.

New members of the Delta Rewards Dining program earn 2,500 bonus miles after spending $30 at a participating restaurant. Register by March 1, 2015.

Salt Lake City is a Delta hub so 2,500 Skymiles could come in handy.

Sandy Antiques Mall
Sandy Antique Mall
Photo by Joel Shprentz

Sandy Antique Mall

India House Restaurant and Sandy Antiques Mall
India House Restaurant and Sandy Antiques Mall

The Sandy Antique Mall is next door to India House.  It’s an agglomeration of several buildings that seem to go on forever.

Vendors specializing in everything from vintage clothing and jewelry to antique furniture and gadgets have “booths” here.

It’s fun to browse because you never know what you might find.

Many of the restaurants in the Rewards Dining program are unremarkable but India House is definitely worth seeking out.

Do you participate in the Rewards Dining programs?

Keep Your Frequent Flyer Miles Active with Thanks Again

Thanks Again Loyalty Program QR CodeThanks Again is a loyalty program that awards airline frequent flyer miles for parking and other purchases at 170 airports throughout the U.S.

If you sign up via BWI’s link, you can earn 100 airline miles or 200 hotel points for enrolling!  This enrollment bonus is valid through December 31, 2015.

Thanks Again allows you to automatically earn frequent flyer miles or hotel points when you park, shop and dine at BWI or any of the other participating airports, such as RDU, DCA, BOS, PIT, FWA, AUS, and dozens of others.

This is a great way to extend the expiration date on an inactive frequent flyer account, or to maintain steady activity on the account.

Thanks Again Bonus Rewards

Simply register one or more American Express, Visa, or MasterCard credit card and pair it with the rewards program of your choice.  You will automatically earn one  extra mile, or two extra hotel points, when you shop at any of 24,000 participating locations.  This is on top of any other points you are earning with the card.

Real big spenders earn 5x miles or 10x points if they spend $1,000 in a calendar quarter.  

 Thanks Again Participating Loyalty Programs

 Airlines
  • AeroMexico Club Premier
  • Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
  • American AAdvantage
  • Delta SkyMiles
  • Frontier EarlyReturns
  • JetBlue TrueBlue
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards
  • United MileagePlus
  • US Airways Dividend Miles

 Hotel Programs

  • Hilton HHonors
  • VOILÀ Hotel Rewards
  • Wyndham Rewards

Have you tried Thanks Again?

Pets Always Stay Free at Red Roof Inns

This is Mitzy.
This is Mitzy.

Hold on to your hats, hotel snobs.  I just joined RediCard, the loyalty program of Red Roof Inns.

The reason:  not only are Red Roof Inns pet friendly, but pets stay free.

From time to time, we travel with our cockapoo, Mitzy.  We’ve encountered up-charges at hotels ranging from $20 per night to $75 per stay.

To be honest, I’ve only stayed at one Red Roof Inn, and it was a new hotel in Garden City, Long Island.

The decor was very modern and the room was comfortable.  What I liked best, though, was that the floors in the room were a laminate, and that seemed so much cleaner than a carpeted floor.  There was free wifi, but no free breakfast.

Reasonably priced hotels are scarce on Long Island.  I got the room via a Priceline bid for a 2 star hotel.  I was impressed enough with the place that I reserved directly the next time I was in the area.  My second visit occurred after Hurricane Sandy, and the hotel was housing many families and their pets that had been displaced by the storm.

Pets Always Stay Free at Red Roof Inns

The hotel I stayed at in Garden City, NY had interior corridors and was designated a Red Roof Inn Plus property.

Our room at the Red Roof Inn on Long Island looked pretty much like this.
Our room at the Red Roof Inn on Long Island looked pretty much like this.

Red Roof Plus properties feature:  modern decor, flat screen TVs, vessel sinks, wood-like floors, additional electrical outlets, a 100% smoke-free designation, high-end bedding, in-room red accent wall and renovated lobby featuring stone accent wall.

In 2013, USA Today readers voted Red Roof Inn the best budget hotel brand.

All but three of 375 Red Roof Inns accept pets.  The exceptions are:  Oxon Hill, MD; Flushing, NY; and Queensboro Long Island City, NY.

Red Roof Inn’s Pet Policy

Here is the Red Roof Inn Pet Policy:

  • One well-behaved family pet is permitted unless prohibited by state law or ordinance
  • Service animals are always welcome
  • Pet must be declared during guest registration
  • Please keep your animal on a leash when outside your room
  • In consideration of all Red Roof guests, pets must never be left unattended in the guestroom
  • When you walk your pet on property, please be considerate and clean up after your pet

Check out their pet Facebook page for special deals.

 RediCard — The Loyalty Program of Red Roof Inns

The benefits of the RediCard, the Red Roof Inn loyalty program are that you earn 10x points per stay, and a free night with 6,000 points.  At that rate, it would take between six and ten paid stays to earn a free night.

You also get free bottled water in your room each day, and a discount of up to 20 percent off the best available rate when you book ten days in advance.

I hear that Red Roof Inn is coming out with a co-branded credit card in 2015.  Any takers?

 

My End of Year Bonus Points Haul

IMG_3032Some generous bonus offers in the last quarter of 2014 have boosted the balance of frequent flyer miles and hotel points in some of my favorite programs, and should help fund travel in 2015.

15,000 American Airlines AAdvantage Miles

I earned 7,500 AAdvantage miles for test driving a Cadillac, and 7,500 miles for two stays at Radisson hotels, for a total of 15,000 bonus miles.  The test drive  was actually a fun time, because I got to experience the Cadillac’s electric vehicle, with an $82,000 price tag, no less.

11,000 United MileagePlus Miles

The United Mileage Plus dining program was offering 10,000 bonus miles for ten dines at restaurants in the rewards dining program.

I purchased gift cards for some of my favorite restaurants, which earned me 3-5 times points per purchase, for a total haul of 11,000 miles.  I can spread out the dines over a number of months next year.  A number of the restaurants were offering bonus coupons with the gift card purchases — a nice additional incentive.

30,000 Club Carlson Gold Points

I had two nights paid stays at Radisson hotels which yielded 40 times bonus points thanks to a double points offer, plus 6,000 points for booking the two reservations via the mobile app, for a total of 20,000  points.

The Club Carlson Visa was also offering an extra 5,000 points for restaurant purchases, above their normal 5x points, so I earned an additional 10,000 Club Carlson gold points for participating in the United Dining Rewards program bonus offer.

Were you able to take advantage of any year-end bonus offers?