It turns out travel bloggers can agree on some things…
Travel bloggers love to tell people how to spend their points, and if you’re going to throw out advice, it better be good. While most travel bloggers struggle to agree on which way is North, a few rare points gems reach consensus, where almost anyone who’s ever done it seems to love it. If you’ve been filtering through all the ways to cash in your hard earned credit card points, hotel points or airline miles, these suggestions are sure to wow – and have passed the cunning tests of many bloggers alike…
First Class has become prohibitively pricey using points, yet business class remains a viable option with many great loyalty programs. Qatar’s QSuites business class, also known as “first in business” gets the nod from virtually every travel blogger. You’ve got doors you can close for full privacy, excellent food (especially if you like spicy food), extra large entertainment screens and of course, Qatar’s over the top service. Its tough to beat this experience in business class, especially on the Airbus A350.
Great Way To Book: 42,000 points one way between Europe and Middle East or 40,000 points one way between Middle East and Asia using American Airline sAAdvantage miles.
Bloggers bang on about Hyatt this, Hyatt that all the time, but there’s one Hyatt I must agree with. It’s the Andaz Tokyo. Set high above the Tokyo skyline in the Toranomon Tower, it’s a setting that’s truly stunning. High ceilings, design forward everything and a unique sense of place make this a hotel to return to over and over again. And even if you’re not an elite Hyatt member, all guests get a complimentary wine and canapé hour in the evening, which is surprisingly good. Oh, and if you like pastry and great coffee, you don’t even need to leave the building. A exceptional patisserie can be found on the ground floor.
Great Way To Book: Chase Ultimate Rewards or Hyatt points for 30,000 points a night. Cash prices often run over $500, so this is a great value.
This is an experience you really just can’t help but smile about. If you snag an A380, you’ll be guaranteed a massive bed, with a door for full privacy. But beyond the stunning amount of space, you’ll get to answer View From The Wing’s in flight favorite question: Dom or Krug? Of course, you can now reply, which vintage for each? Singapore is of course presently serving vintage Krug as well, after all! The great thing about redeeming for Singapore Suites is you can even try it on shorter routes within Asia, if you just want a taste of what extreme first class feels like.
Great Way To Book: You can only book Singapore Suites with Singapore Air KrisFlyer miles. But the good news is you can create Singapore miles from Amex, Citi, Chase or SPG, making them easy to acquire.
The Maldives is a favorite amongst the travel bloggerati – and rightfully so. The atolls of the Maldives are about as removed, luxurious and over the top as it gets. The waters really are crystal blue, the food is genuinely exceptional and when it comes to getting bang for your buck, you really can’t do much better. These are the kind of places that go for more than a thousand per night, so using points feels like an ultimate win. The Park Hyatt or Conrad Rangali are exceptional choices and are sure to make you glad you came. For novelty, the underwate restaurant at the Conrad is off the charts.
Great Way To Book: Hilton is giving out points like chiclets these days. The premium Hilton credit card from Amex in the US offers 100,000 point sign up bonus and Diamond status as long as you hold the card. Diamond status is easily worth $450 a year, if you use Hilton with any regularity and wouldn’t otherwise receive it. For the Park Hyatt, 30,000 points a night is phenomenal.
Sure, it’s not the newest seat out there, and many a travel blogger will have distinct opinions on style and approach – but the complete Emirates First Class package is simply remarkable. On the A380 you’ve got an on board bar, private shower suites and fully enclosed suites with doors. The bed is also exceptionally comfortable. For a “once in a lifetime” experience, it’s hard for anyone not to be highly amused as they shift from comfortable sleep, to a lovely shower, with space to move around. And once refreshed, it’s time for attentive fine dining, an obligatory trip to the bar to drink your private stash of Dom Perignon.
Great Way To Book: If you have other airline miles, start an Emirates First journey in Seoul, with JAL miles which you can acquire via Starwood or Barclay’s Premier. Flights out of Seoul carry no surcharges and JAL has the best rates for Emirates First.