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Amex Travel

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I booked a RT flight from San Diego to Hayden, CO on the Alaska Air website a month ago for Feb travel. I did not use any points. Total cost was $337.30. Today the same flight from the Alaska Air website is $468.

 

On the Amex Travel booking site the same Alaska flight is $720. I realize I can earn more reward points with Amex going through their travel site but the cost is too expensive.

 

I only travel twice a year and it's usually to visit my brother in Steamboat Springs.

 

Am I missing something here? Could someone explain or direct me to post on CB.

 

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You'll never earn enough points to offset the additional $383 cost of the ticket. Your $337 purchase is the best deal. It is not even close.

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The credit card travel portals are generally awful compared to using a tool like Google Flights and booking directly with the airline.

 

They often have a limited selection of flights, don't offer every type of fare or class of service, etc. (so you may not be comparing azaleas to azaleas).

 

Here is an example:  

 

 

 

I didn't realize that Amex paid extra rewards for using their travel portal for airfare.  Which card(s)?  I feel like I fell asleep at the wheel here.  :)  

Edited by cv91915

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The main case to book directly with the airlines is that there is no middle man if there should be irregular ops, cancellations, or you want to make changes.

 

I have done well the past year with Amex IAP.

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43 minutes ago, cv91915 said:

The credit card travel portals are generally awful compared to using a tool like Google Flights and booking directly with the airline.

 

They often have a limited selection of flights, don't offer every type of fare or class of service, etc. (so you may not be comparing azaleas to azaleas).

 

Here is an example:  

 

I didn't realize that Amex paid extra rewards for using their travel portal for airfare.  Which card(s)?  I feel like I fell asleep at the wheel here.  :)  

I should have said paying with pts. I was reading up on the Amex site my pts are worth more if I use them to pay for airfare on Amex travel. Amex stated if I use earned pts as a statement credit they are not worth as much as using them to book travel thru their site. 

 

 

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9 hours ago, Burgerwars said:

You'll never earn enough points to offset the additional $383 cost of the ticket. Your $337 purchase is the best deal. It is not even close.

No doubt.

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29 minutes ago, creditmaze said:

I should have said paying with pts. I was reading up on the Amex site my pts are worth more if I use them to pay for airfare on Amex travel. Amex stated if I use earned pts as a statement credit they are not worth as much as using them to book travel thru their site. 

 

 

Got it, that makes sense.  Thanks for clarifying.  :) 

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1 hour ago, hegemony said:

The main case to book directly with the airlines is that there is no middle man if there should be irregular ops, cancellations, or you want to make changes.

 

I have done well the past year with Amex IAP.

I have always booked directly with the airlines. I just never trusted third party. Last Nov my flight was delayed  and eventually cancelled due to weather. Southwest immediately got me another flight. 

 

Even the Expedia link on the Amex site was as expensive as Amex travel. I logged out, cleared cookies, used incognito mode; even used Duck Duck Go, same result.

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On 1/25/2020 at 9:20 AM, creditmaze said:

I should have said paying with pts. I was reading up on the Amex site my pts are worth more if I use them to pay for airfare on Amex travel. Amex stated if I use earned pts as a statement credit they are not worth as much as using them to book travel thru their site.

There are occasions where a better deal shows up on AmexTravel than exists on the airline websites, with that pricing being available using either cash or points. 

 

For me, the biggest advantage to booking through AX Travel is the 5x bonus with the Platinum card.  It is also not limited to travel for the cardholder.  I routinely book travel for mom to collect the 5x bonus. 

 

The flight shows almost immediately on my airline of choice and the "record number" is usually included in the receipt I print out at the end of the transaction.  Never have had an issue mid-travel.  And, on the two occasions where I had cause to speak with a CSR for the airline prior to the travel, there were no indications that they had problems such as some report with the third-party sites like Expedia or similar.  I had one instance where the system hung just before the final page of the process and the AXP concierge staff finished the process and had immediately offered a credit on what turned out to have been processed as a double-booking AND for the change fee that the airline had tried to assess.  I seriously doubt that most of the third-party sites would have stepped up in that fashion.  Oh, and booking through AX has never impacted the TOD's offers at the T-24 check-in...

 

One issue with booking rooms that I have encountered on a few occasions is that a courtesy upgrade is sometimes more challenging when checking in compared to if I had booked through the hotel website. 

 

I generally start with the matrix.ita page to get a feel for flight options and then go to AX.  Prior to confirming a trip, I do double check against the airline page but have never seen an instance where the AX Travel pricing was more than what I would have gotten directly through the legacy.  Once I have the flight booked, I will also jump back over to the legacy page to change seating assignments...

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On 1/25/2020 at 8:56 AM, cv91915 said:

I didn't realize that Amex paid extra rewards for using their travel portal for airfare.  Which card(s)?  I feel like I fell asleep at the wheel here.  :)  

The Platinum card is 5x points when booking through the American Express Travel site...I believe Plat is the only one with that bonus.

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41 minutes ago, centex said:

The Platinum card is 5x points when booking through the American Express Travel site...I believe Plat is the only one with that bonus.

5X MEMBERSHIP REWARDS® POINTS

• Get 5X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.

 

https://www.americanexpress.com/us/credit-cards/card/platinum/ 

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On 1/26/2020 at 7:15 AM, centex said:

There are occasions where a better deal shows up on AmexTravel than exists on the airline websites, with that pricing being available using either cash or points. 

 

 

I booked a flight through Amex Travel last night and this time I got the exact price that United sited. Paid in full with points. Decent price too.

 

So this will be the first time I didn't book directly through the airline.

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