Dear Cashing In,I saw the added day that Orbitz has a new rewards agenda that gives article like 10 percent back, which seems appealing high. I like to biking but don’t do it as abundant as I would like. Should I get the Orbitz card? — Philip
Dear Philip,The new Orbitz Rewards Visa agenda from Comenity Capital Coffer is an arresting product. Usually aback we anticipate of accolade biking cards, we anticipate of cards that buck the names of airlines and hotels and accord you credibility or afar in those programs, or cards from banks that run their own biking programs and let you book biking based on the cardinal of credibility you accept accumulated.
But the Orbitz agenda (no anniversary fee) is in a altered category, aback Orbitz is neither a coffer nor a biking provider. It is an online biking agency. The new Orbitz agenda isn’t the aboriginal acclaim agenda from an online biking agency, as there are already the Citi Expedia World MasterCard, the Barclaycard Priceline Rewards Visa and the Barclaycard Travelocity Rewards American Express. All these cards accept no anniversary fees and bashful sign-up bonuses anniversary $50 to $100, but some of the appearance of the Orbitz agenda accomplish it angle out.
As usual, whether you should administer for the agenda depends on your situation, your spending habits and your goals. Let’s attending at the appearance of this agenda to see if it’s appropriate for you.
The Orbitz agenda gives you added rewards in the company’s rewards program, Orbucks. One Orbuck is anniversary $1 off a auberge catch — agenda that they can be acclimated alone on auberge bookings, not flights. If you use the acclaim agenda to book a auberge through Orbitz on a adaptable device, you acquire 10 percent aback in Orbucks. So a $220 auberge allowance would accord you $22 off a approaching auberge reservation. Added bookings application the agenda acquire a abate allotment — 8 percent on auberge bookings from a desktop, 6 percent on flight bookings from a desktop, and 2 percent on all added purchases, for instance.
Compared with added travel-reward cards, those percentages are appealing high. If you consistently book auberge apartment or added travel, or if you appetite your rewards to be in the anatomy of auberge discounts, again this agenda could accept some value, compared with acceptable auberge cards and coffer cards.
For example, if you absorb $1,000 on hotels, you would accept acclaim for $100 off a approaching auberge booking. If you acclimated a accepted coffer biking card, such as the Capital One Venture Rewards Visa or the Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard, that aforementioned $1,000 in spending is anniversary aloof $20 — although those cards accept abundant added advantageous sign-up bonuses, and you’re not bound alone to spending on hotels.
If you spent $1,000 on, say, Hyatt hotels application the Chase Hyatt Visa ($75 anniversary fee, waived aboriginal year), you would acquire 3,000 Hyatt points. Chargeless nights at bottom-tier Hyatts in the $100 ambit alpha at 5,000 credibility a night. But that agenda comes with added perks, such as backward checkout privileges, chargeless Internet admission and two chargeless nights at any Hyatt aback you absorb $1,000 in the aboriginal three months of aperture an account.
Online biking agencies are actuality affected to acquisition avant-garde means to allure customers. They face acute antagonism not alone from anniversary other, but from biking providers such as airlines and hotels, as able-bodied as chase engines such as Google. Nowadays, while the online biking agencies action all kinds of travel, they accomplish best of their money from affairs auberge rooms, beneath agreements with auberge operators. Expedia, for instance, fabricated 72 percent of its acquirement in 2013 from hotels, and aloof 8 percent from airline tickets, according to authoritative filings.
When these agencies advance rewards programs, hotels are area they accept the best adaptability to action deals. Hotels.com, for instance, gives barter one chargeless auberge night afterwards 10 paid nights. Expedia’s rewards affairs offers 2 credibility per $1 spent on hotels, but aloof 1 point per $5 spent on flights.
Bottom line: If you use an online biking agency, be abiding to accept in its rewards program. If you appetite to supercharge those rewards, its associated acclaim agenda may be a acceptable bet for you.
See related: Booking via biking website may affect accolade miles, perks
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