Hotel Safe (Photo: Hart)

Earlier this week, I reported on a US Airways bonus for new Dividend Miles members.

Suggesting what may or may not turn out to be a travel-industry trend, today's review is of yet another program sign-up bonus, this time for Carlson Hotels' goldpoints plus more»

Airport customs (Photo: PhotoDisc)

A free night after three Starwood stays?

Sounds good. But you'll have to travel pretty far afield to earn the bonus, as well as to use it.

Offer Details

Between November 1, 2010, and January 31, 2011, Starwood Preferred Guest members can earn a free weekend night after completing three stays at around 250 participating properties in Asia Pacific, the Middle East, and Africa charged to a MasterCard.

The free night may be redeemed on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday night from December 2, 2010, through February 27, 2011, at Category 1 through 6 hotels in the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East, or more»

US Airways aircraft close up (Photo: US Airways)

If you're not a member of US Airways' Dividend Miles program, and you've been meaning to sign up, this would be a good time to do so.

Offer Details

Through December 31, new Dividend Miles members will earn a 1,000-mile sign-up bonus when enrolling with promotion code NMCB.

And there's an extra 2,000-mile bonus for using a MasterCard (not necessarily the US Airways MasterCard) to book a flight and travel within 60 days of enrolling in the more»

Man checking watch at the ticket counter (Photo: Index Open)

In my coverage of United's "We Want You to Use Your Miles" ad campaign, I noted that the final verdict would rest with the airline's customers.

The reader comments on the blog post have been mixed. Some examples:

We've had a Mileage Plus card for a long time and find it more and more difficult to get to use the miles for the times and places I want to go. more»

Photo: American Airlines

As discussed in my review of US Airways' new system-wide bonus offer, promotions linked to the use of a particular credit card are becoming increasingly common.

This one is from American, and also requires the use of a more»

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

Airlines and hotels are happy to sell you points or miles in their loyalty programs. It's a highly profitable side business for them.

For consumers, on the other hand, buying miles or points is almost always a bad deal. Almost always.

There are two scenarios where buying miles may be the sensible thing to do. The first is in the case of limited need. You're just short of an award threshold, and purchasing the handful of miles still needed to qualify for that free trip is quick and more»

US Airways aircraft tail close up (Photo: US Airways)

Among the largest airlines, US Airways has been one of the most aggressive in its recent frequent flyer marketing.

In addition to its recurring 100 percent bonus for purchased miles, US Airways offered double miles—including elite-qualifying miles—on all flights between April 13 and June 15, and had an elite status promotion in effect through October 10.

In these days of route-specific bonuses and 10 or 20 percent discounts for purchased miles, US Airways' offers have been standouts.

The airline's latest offer is pretty generous as well, especially if you have a US Airways-affiliated credit more»

Woman shopping online (Photo: Image DJ/Index Open)

Last week, among the usual glut of frequent flyer-related emails in my inbox was one from United with the following subject line: "Introducing Mileage Plus Shopping."

Of course, United already had a mileage mall—a network of online retailers, all of which award miles for purchases—as do all United's more»

Man pushing luggage towards security (Photo: Index Open)

With the merger of United and Continental completed, the work of actually merging the two airlines' operations begins.

For many frequent flyers, the consolidation of the Mileage Plus and OnePass mileage programs is the top concern. Among the outstanding questions:

  • When will the programs become one?
  • Which program rules will prevail in the new program?
  • Will United's Economy Plus be retained? more»

Man on laptop and phone (Photo: Index Open)

When my most recent roundup of current hotel promotions published, Hilton hadn't yet announced its fourth-quarter bonus offer.

Here it is ...

Offer Details

Between October 12 and December 30, Hilton HHonors members will earn double base points for all stays, or quadruple base points if the qualifying stay includes a Sunday more»