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Delta SkyMiles members can earn a 50 percent bonus when transferring American Express points into their accounts, plus bonus 25,000 Medallion elite-qualifying miles. ... read more»

Hotel room door slightly open (Photo: iStockphoto/MBCheatham)

Best Western is giving away 3,000 bonus points (5,000 for elite members) for stays purchased with a Best Western travel card completed by August 31. But you had to have purchased the travel card by May 31. So if you missed the deadline, that promotion is a non-starter for you.

If you did purchase the travel card by May 31 and haven't yet used it for a stay, you may be able to combine those bonus points with either a free night or bonus miles on offer in these two newly announced Best Westerns promotions. ... read more»

US Airways aircraft close up (Photo: US Airways)

Since the summer of 2009, US Airways has been toying with various versions of discounted miles-for-sale offers, beginning with a simple 100 percent bonus on purchased miles, and most recently coupling the full bonus to the use of US Airways' shopping toolbar.

The original promotion, simple and generous, is still the best. And through the end of the month, it's back. ... read more»

Credit Card: People Passing Card (Photo: iStockphoto/Marcus Clackson)

With the string of recent 50,000- and 100,000-mile bonuses for new British Airways credit cards, it's a safe bet that the ranks of U.S. Executive Club members have swelled considerably.

Are you a member of British Airways' Executive Club? Do you collect American Express Membership Rewards points as well?

If so, this promotion merits your attention. ... read more»

Woman with headphones (Photo: Sergeo Syd - iStockphoto)

Free travel? How 'bout free music?

To mark its 40th anniversary, Southwest is giving away 40 free iTunes songs.

To be clear, these are 40 tunes of Southwest's own choosing, not 40 tunes that you would choose yourself. So while the nominal value of the music is around $40 (most iTunes songs cost $0.99 each), the real value to you will depend on how your taste and Southwest's line up. Which raises the question: How did Southwest pick those 40 songs?

According to an article in Southwest's inflight magazine, the principle guiding the music choices was as follows: ... read more»

Hotel bed with rose petals (Photo: Index Open)

If you're a Marriott Rewards member, you probably received an email today announcing the program's summer bonus. A promotion that began yesterday.

You might wonder why Marriott waited until June 2 to announce a promotion that began on June 1. I did. Doesn't Marriott understand that travel requires planning? And that planning requires advance notice?

Although the promotion reviewed here is for free nights, that's just the default offer—some Rewards members have been offered bonus points instead.

And while this has all the earmarks of one of Marriott's recurring MegaBonus promotions, Marriott isn't calling it that.

Further muddying the waters, Marriott has a second promotion in place during the same time period, awarding bonus miles instead of free nights.

By whatever name, and however ineptly communicated, the new offer is worth considering. ... read more»

American plane taxiing down the runway (Photo:  Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport)

American's Deal 30—30 deals in as many days, to mark the 30th anniversary of the AAdvantage program—was a mixed bag, with more misses than hits.

Still, American wins points for the sheer audacity of the promotion. And the final deal, announced last Friday, rates as a bang rather than a whimper. ... read more»

Airplane Past Empty Seats (Photo: iStockphoto/Shane Kato)

I am asked often which is the best airline mileage program.

My response is likely to strike some as an evasion: There is no best program, only a program that works best for you, given your travel and consumption behavior.

While there may be no categorically best program, there is a program that is the most generous—in other words, a program that makes awards easiest to obtain. The problem, however, is that we don't know which program that is. ... read more»

Virgin America plane parked at the gate (Photo: Clark County Department of Aviation)

Earlier this week, in reviewing United's newly announced double-mile offer for flights between Chicago and Los Angeles or San Francisco, I suggested that "perhaps United's promotion will force Virgin America's hand."

Two days later, it did just that.

Offer Details

Between May 25 and August 31, Virgin American Elevate members can earn triple points (15 points per $1) for flights between Chicago and Los Angeles or San Francisco. ... read more»

<strong>Take a Walking Tour</strong>

One of the more affordable modes of transportation is using your own two feet, and walking is one of the best ways to learn about a destination. Plus, many cities offer a wide range of tours&mdash;both independent and guided&mdash;on a slew of different subjects, including history, ghost tales, food and drink, shopping, and sightseeing. And you don't need to know a soul to have a good time.

Start planning by visiting the city's convention and visitor bureau's website, which typically offers free maps, guides, itineraries, and suggestions for walking tours. The visitor's center is also a great place to stop by in person to get tips on where to go to find the type of tour that interests you. Many historical societies provide free guided tours to acquaint visitors with the city's past, so check their offerings as well.

The number of walking tours in a destination like New York City is overwhelming, and you would run your feet raw if you tried to go on even a quarter of them. However, this fierce competition means lower prices and a greater range of subjects to choose from. For instance, you can take a 90-minute <a href="http://www.unionsquarenyc.org/walk.html" target="_blank">Union Square: Crossroads of New York</a> free walking tour and a three-and-a-half-hour <a href="http://www.walkingnyctours.com/descriptions.php" target="_blank">Manhattan Melting Pot Eating Tour</a> for $40, all in the same day.

(Photo: iStockphoto/Vitaly Sokolovskiy)

Between June 1 and August 31, Marriott Rewards members can earn quadruple miles in any of 12 airline programs for their second and subsequent stays at more than 3,400 hotels. ... read more»

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