After the recent devaluation of United Award chart, the awards in premium cabin on partner airlines has gone quite expensive. But the new award chart has a sweet spot created for visiting "Down Under" from quite a few Asian countries that too in premium cabin on partner airlines. To begin with look at the United award chart below:
As you can see from the highlighted section above, visiting "Down Under" from South Asia is just 30k miles one way in business or 40k miles in First. You could even do a return trip with a stop-over or 2 open-jaws and still pay 60k/80k in business/first. That is an incredible deal knowing how large is South Asia. Just to get an idea look below on countries classified under "South Asia" by United.
The gist is you can get to fly incredible Singapore Airlines, or Thai Airways to visit "Down Under" and go as far as Bangladesh (Dhaka) which is essentially very close to India/Pakistan. Below is the map of what you can do for 80k miles in first class for which US Airways would charge you 120k miles.
As you can see from the map you could potentially get a stop-over in either of DAC/BKK/SIN or for that matter any of the United classified "South Asian" country and get to travel "down under" for 80k United miles in First!! Hope this helps folks planning their trip from South Asian countries.
Most often than not on your trip you rent a car and its good to know what all the available options are as well as which websites would fetch you the cheapest car rental cost.
To start with there are two kind of rentals you could book:
When you book the car rental using this kind of service you are typically renting through 3rd party travel agency site. Below are the advantages and disadvantages of this kind of rental:
This is how typically you would book you car rental using either 3rd party OTA websites or the car rental agency website. The only disadvantage if you might end up paying a higher price then otherwise you would pay using the "Opaque booking", but the advantages are many as listed below:
With that being said for "transparent booking", below are some of the websites which you would find useful for finding promotion / discount codes before you would go ahead and make your car rental reservation or could help you in getting the best available price for your next car rental.
Promo Codes / Discount Codes Websites:
Car Rental Booking Websites (OTA):
Below is the list of websites which generally tend to give good discounted rates for car rentals. Some of them are limited to access for "members only", but if you have access to them it would be really useful. You would want to try at-least 3 of them before concluding the best available price.
Note: None of the above links are referral links or earns me any commission. Thanks for reading!
Lot of cash back websites like Ebates, Ultimate Rewards Mall or various airlines online shopping portal offer great promotion where you can earn anywhere from 2x to 20x miles/points per dollar spent (2% to 20% cashback) on purchase from various online stores. Some of these portals also provide opportunity to earn miles/points or cashback for buying merchant gift cards. Lot of the folks in miles world buy merchant gift cards to earn lucrative miles through these portals as gift cards tend to be most flexible and can be used for any future purchase from those stores. The side-effect of buying gift cards is sometimes you will end up having few dollars left over in the gift card which you have no idea of what to do with. But what if you could redeem those gift cards for cash?
Each state has its own rule concerning the gift card expiry as well as rules governing converting them to cash or check. One of the state with more consumer friendly law is California. The law states that under legal guide S-11 (more information can be found here) any store that sells its own branded gift card is required by law to allow customer to cash out the gift card if the value of the gift card is less than $10. What this means is that at any point your gift card balance falls below $10, the merchant is required to provide the provision to en-cash that gift card for its equivalent cash value (either by cash or check).
Although the law provides for this provision most of stores associate are not aware of this and would simply refuse to en-cash the gift card even if the dollar value of gift card is less than $10. Since this provision is provided by law, make sure you Insist for the cash back and if need be speak with the supervisor or the store manager who will be more than willing to consider it. This knowledge of cashing out the gift card is a great way of getting rid of gift cards with a value of less than $10. Below are couple of examples to leverage this:
Note: I do get referal bonus if you use Ebates link above to open your Ebates account. I do appreciate your using the link.
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