Am I thrilled about the value I got for my Ultimate Rewards and Thank You points? No. But I got four tickets with very little out of pocket. To me, it made more sense than paying for award tickets at anytime prices (double the miles) as there was no saver award availability. In that regard, I got value for my points by saving my miles and no money out of pocket. When the ship leaves you just can’t count on saver tickets, and now the deal is done.
One other point about cruise travel: fly in a day early. When Katy worked for Holland America they always flew crew members in a day early and bought them overnight accommodations. Regardless whether passenger or crew, weather, mechanicals and who knows what else can delay your arrival. The ship will depart as scheduled and they will not wait for you.
We have never done this Alaska cruise as passengers, just as crew members which is somewhat more restrictive with time requirements and back on board requirements. I can’t wait to find that magic spot on the back of the ship as we leave Juneau where we see the city behind us in the distance and the float planes coming back home after a day in the bush. Ah Alaska.
IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card
- Annual Fee: $49 fee waived for the first year
- Foreign Fees: No
- Card Type: Hotel
The IHG Rewards Club Visa is often cited as one of the most underrated hotel credit cards, with good reason. The official offer is for 70,000 points after $1,000 spent within three months, with the first year’s fee waived. The card comes with an annual free night certificate that can be used at any IHG property, including Intercontinental hotels - making this certificate worth upwards of 50,000 points. This is far more generous than some other hotel cards, which limit the categories in which free night certificates can be redeemed.
Cardholders earn 5 points per dollar at IHG hotels; 2 points per dollar at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants; 1 point per dollar everywhere else. Moreover, you’ll get a 10% rebate on award redemptions, up to 100,000 points per year. The card also comes with Platinum status, though that doesn’t get you much with IHG. Still, this is a fantastic card to have in your wallet, with benefits that far outweigh the already low $49 annual fee.
- Earn 70,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of account opening
- Enjoy a free night of card membership at over 4,700 hotels worldwide
- Earn 5 points for each $1 spent at our hotels
- Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants
- Bonus points redeemable at hotels such as Intercontinental® Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts and Holiday Inn®
- Automatic platinum elite status, as long as you remain a cardmember
- $0 introductory annual fee the first year, then $49