🤔 The best "choice" is "choice"

 

Estimated read time: 4 minutes and 50 seconds

Did you know that there is a remote island in Micronesia nicknamed “the Island of Colorblind,” for its high population of people who cannot distinguish color? Roughly 10% of the island’s people have the condition. There are some legends that might explain the oddity, but no one is sure of the real reason. You can read more about it here.

Good morning and welcome back to Daily Drop. Instead of crunches and squats, let’s exercise our brain today with some amazing travel hacks, shall we?

Here’s how we’ll finish off the week with a bang:

  • 💸 Let’s talk about cash back

  • 🤔 The best “choice” is “choice”

  • 👋🏼 Wanna hang out this weekend?

  • 🖼️ Meme

💸 Let’s talk about cash back

Before you blow past this section after seeing the words “cash back,” just hold on a sec.

Although many of us have been conditioned to believe that cash back is evil by the travel hacking community, let me try to change your mind.

I’m going to lay out a few reasons that you may consider opening or switching to a cash back card.

But if you stick around to the end, I’ll tell you about a bank that offers the single best suite of cash back cards on the market.

1. Cash is king, baby

One of the reasons people don’t have cash back cards is that the value you get back is generally far less than the value of rewards you can get from other cards.

For example, if you have a card like this one that earns 2% cash back vs. a card like this one that earns 2x points on all purchases, you’re effectively only getting half the value, since those points are worth twice as much as a penny.

But you know what cash can get you that rewards can’t get you?

Literally everything…

Sometimes, people just want to save as much cash as possible and travel on a budget. Maybe you want the choice of using the cash you earn for travel or something completely different.

In that case, cash back is the way to go. Because cash is still king.

I’d like to see you try to make it rain with these “points” you speak of…

2. Great starter cards

Generally speaking, cash back cards are lower-tier, low-annual-fee (or no annual fee) cards. Because they don’t offer tons of perks, fancy points, or rebates, the banks don’t need to charge you to have them.

So if you’re starting off in the points/credit card game, opening a cashback card could be a solid option.

Some no-annual-fee cards even offer HUGE cash back bonuses. For example, this card offers 5% cash back on a category of your choosing. Pretty wild, eh?

3. Buying points

Okay, here’s a fun one…

Remember last week when I told you about an awesome 70% transfer bonus from this bank to IHG?

That all sounds great… but what if I told you that you could get a 200% bonus on the same points by having a cash back card instead?

Let me explain…

If you have this credit card (which can currently transfer points to IHG with a 70% bonus), you earn one point per dollar on most purchases.

At this rate, every dollar you spend will earn you 1.7 IHG points.

If you have this cash back card, however, you earn 2% cash back on every purchase, or two cents per dollar you spend.

IHG generally sells their points for one cent each.

BUT… IHG also frequently sells their points with a 100% bonus (just $0.05 each)…

So, if you spend $1 on this card, you would earn two cents cash back, which could buy you FOUR IHG points per dollar spent.

So basically, you’re getting more than twice the value by opting for cash back and buying points as opposed to a really solid transfer bonus.

If you used the card I mentioned earlier that earns 5% cash back, you’d be able to buy TEN points per dollar spent…

It’s a good example of how cash back can be deceptively valuable in the points and miles world.

Now in case you’re wondering…

There’s one bank out there that has the market locked down when it comes to great cash back cards. So we made a page that lists out the best cards this bank has to offer (both cash back and points-earning cards) for your viewing pleasure.

So be sure to check it out if you want to earn cold, hard cash and diversify your credit card travel-hacking strategy.

🤔 The best “choice” is “choice”

If you hadn’t picked up what I’m throwing down at this point… I’m on a big kick with this bank’s cards in today’s newsletter.

And rightly so, because they’re dope 🤘

I wanted to highlight yet another perk of using this card, and in particular, its hotel transfer partner, Choice Privileges.

And that is because you can transfer this card’s points at a 1:2 ratio to thousands of Choice Privileges properties around the world.

In fact, it’s the best point currency to use if you’re going to book within this hotel’s portfolio because of this 1:2 ratio.

Now, not all points are valued equally, but still… transferring, say, 5,000 points and having them automagically turn into 10,000 feels pretty good.

Using this particular transfer partner at this point transfer ratio is also an excellent opportunity to head to Scandinavia, for example, which is known for being one of the world’s most expensive places to travel.

But I love it there. I guess I can’t help but gravitate toward other tall, blonde people who are walking around eating cardamom buns. It’s in my blood.

For instance, you could book this nice hotel in the painfully expensive city of Stockholm for just 10,000 points a night 👇

As a reminder, that’s just 5,000 points transferred from a card like this one for a hotel that would cost closer to $200 a night if you were paying cash.

2,195 SEK = 205.97 USD

BUT WAIT. It gets even better because right now, cardholders can earn 10 points per dollar spent on hotels and car rentals booked through this bank’s online travel portal (through June 30, 2024).

That’s, like, a lot of points. And for almost an entire year… all from a card that costs just $95 annually 🤗

So if you play your cards right, you could earn a fat stack of points if you’re already planning to book accommodations and decide to do so through their travel portal.

This accelerated earning rate through next June could then allow you to transfer a chunk of future points to a Choice Privileges property… and double them on the spot (thanks to that sweet 1:2 ratio, remember?)

I dunno about you, but these perks are looking pretty tasty. Or maybe that’s just the cardamom bun next to my laptop… 😉

👋🏼 Wanna hang out this weekend?

Hey, what are you doing this weekend? No, I’m not going to invite you over for a craft beer (although… I’m totally down).

I actually have something arguably cooler than that…

Do you want to (virtually) hang with Kara and Nate this weekend? 

Yes, I mean the Kara and Nate!

And… *cue confetti*

They’re going live on Saturday at 4:00 p.m. EST in the Daily Drop Lounge for a Q&A session.

Whether it’s a question about travel hacking or what their favorite brand of travel deodorant is, they’re hanging out for an hour and answering as many as they can get through 🙌

Join the Lounge here, get your questions ready, and refresh your feed at 4:00 p.m. to join live!

🖼️ Meme

Yep… that one pretty much sums it up…

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That’s gonna do it for today, folks! Before you go, I have a quick question for you:

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Have a GREAT weekend, and I’ll see you first thing on Monday.

Love u ❤️

Mike Dodge
Head Writer, Daily Drop

52°22'35.4"N 52°15'17.4"W