Merry Christmas! $25 Visa Gift Card giveaway

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Santa Miles is spreading holiday cheer!

Merry Christmas!!!! We hope you’re having an absolutely wonderful day. As a little thank you and reminder to spread wonderful cheer, joy, and kindness we’re going to give away a $25 gift card to one lucky reader who posts a comment describing how they used points/miles this past year to make a travel dream come true. If we helped you figure it out…we’d love to hear that too!

  • Only strict stipulation is you need to be in the United States/Canada otherwise the giftcard may not work and that makes the whole thing moot.

We’ll email the winner tomorrow !

 Affiliate link via Card Ratings

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card


The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great starter card that earns Premium Ultimate Rewards that can be transferred into over a dozen partners many of which are US based. 

Welcome Offer

60k Points after $4k spend in 3 months

Annual Fee


Points Earned

Transferrable Chase Ultimate Rewards

If you carry this card alongside Chase’s cashback cards like the Chase Freedom Flex℠and Chase Freedom Unlimited® or the business versions: Ink Business Cash , Ink Business Unlimited you can combine the points into Preferred account and transfer into hotel and airline partners

Annual fee is quite low at $95 a year + you get a 10% anniversary bonus on points + $50 hotel credit in Chase travel.

  • 3x on dining
    •  including eligible delivery services for takeout
  • 3x on select streaming services
  • 3x on online grocery purchases
    • (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs)
  • 5x on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards – Chase Travel Portal
  • $50 Annual Credit on hotel stays purchased via Ultimate Rewards/Chase Travel
    • The begins immediately for new cardmembers and after your account anniversary for existing cardmembers
  • 10% Anniversary Bonus
    • Every year you keep the card, your total spend will yield a 10% points bonus. If you spend $10k in a year, you’ll get 1k bonus points
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred® continues to redeem at 1.25c in the Chase Travel Portal and the slew of other benefits remain in tact including primary rental car insurance, purchase protections, etc.
  • Points are transferrable to 13 Ultimate Rewards partners
  • Redeem in the Chase Travel center for 1.25 cents per point
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Suite of Travel and Purchase Coverage
    • Primary rental car coverage is my favorite

We keep an up to date spreadsheet that lists the best ever offers: You can find that spreadsheet here.

Historically 80k is a very, very good offer and hit in both 2022 and 2023. In 2021, we saw the offer hit an all time high of 100k. Who knows if that will ever come back.

Main Cast: 

Cards that earn flexible points and should be used on the bulk of your purchases.

Supporting Cast:

Cards that earn fixed points in the currency of the airline/hotel and can not be transferred at attractive rates. These cards yield benefits that make it worth keeping, but not necessarily worth putting a lot of your everyday spend on. 


  • Luke US December 27, 2018

    I used miles and points to enjoy a trip to beautiful New Zealand! Thanks!

  • Linda December 26, 2018

    I transferred my miles to my mom this year so she could visit family.

  • Corri December 25, 2018

    I took my mom on a dream trip to Switzerland and Austria! Flights were paid all by points.

  • Matthew December 25, 2018

    I used Delta miles to visit family in Honduras over Christmas!

  • tom December 25, 2018

    This year, I redeemed a round trip economy ticket on Alaska for JFK-SFO. A dream of finally seeing Big Sur came true! My second dream is this Monkey Miles contest! I promise to use it for air travel!

  • Yana December 25, 2018

    Used points to stay Choice hotels (they are everywhere), Avios to fly expensive AA flight over Memorial day and Jetblue points to get to everywhere else. Fun!

  • Sara J December 25, 2018

    I used points to fly Spirit for the first time, and out of Oakland airport for the first time! I used a lot of points and had to pay a redemption fee but still got a reasonable deal. Every dollar counts. I got to see very interesting places in Philadelphia.

  • Nick December 25, 2018

    I took my first international trip ever and I used United miles to explore South Korea, Japan and Taiwan in business class on Asiana and EVA. Stayed in different Marriott brands using Marriott points.

    Great experience seeing another part of the world with my fiancé (now wife) and not having to spend any travel money other than accumulating points.

  • dj December 25, 2018

    Used our Amtrak and hotel points to go to NYC for the Westminster Dog Show. It was so much fun! We took my niece and it was a great family trip. May do it again!

  • Dave - Canada December 25, 2018

    Airfare was too expensive so I redeemed a United award on Air Canada. It was a Newark – Vancouver on a Boeing 787. The plane continues to Brisbane, Queensland, Australia but it’s a different flight number.

  • Barry L December 25, 2018

    Epic Qantas F award seats from USA-Australia. Got very lucky with Alaska miles on QF F. Cashed in at couple great hotels also, IC Sydney was amazing.

  • Lauren Schaal December 25, 2018

    Merry Christmas Miles! My best friend and I used our United miles to take a magnificent 10 vacation to Thailand and Cambodia in April! With the help of miles, we were able to travel in business class! Now there’s no way I’m traveling back to Asia in Coach!

  • JRG December 25, 2018

    I used two credit card application bonuses for R/T on AA first/business SLC-FRA in November. Great trip!

  • Ruby @ A Journey We Love December 25, 2018

    Went to Spain for a family wedding this May, perfect time to see our family and celebrate! Used our BoA travel rewards, lots of AirBnB gift cards (bought discounted, of course), and used Merrill points to fly for almost free!

  • P T December 25, 2018

    I used miles and hotel points to go to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur this year. Check!

  • Glenn Lee December 25, 2018

    I booked a cheap business class ticket to fly home to Singapore for my sister’s birthday. That routing meant that I was flying into Singapore and out of Manila. My sister had a trip planned to Hong Kong after her birthday and I wanted to join her. However SIN-HKG-MNL flights were exorbitant ($600 for economy, $1,500 for business).

    One of the award sweet spots on CX was itineraries under 2,500 miles, costing 10,000 Asiamiles for economy redemptions and 25,000 Asiamiles for business. Economy awards were sold out, but I was in luck with business. I used miles earned using my (now closed) Cathay Pacific visa to book the ticket and paid ~$100 in taxes and fees.

    I was on my way to checking out the CX lounge in SIN, and both the pier and the Amex Centurion HKG (I have the Amex platinum). Because I am OW Sapphire (due to cheap mileage runs on QR) I could also guest my sister who was flying economy into the CX lounges! That was a win in my books 🙂

  • Taryn December 25, 2018

    Merry Christmas! This year was my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary and I used Alaska Airline miles and IHG points to send them on a trip to Monterey, CA. They had a wonderful time, and I could not have gifted this trip if it wasn’t for points. They were so spoiled at the InterContinental. Of course, I did my own splurging this year on a trip to the Scottsdale Andaz when Hyatt still gave free night certificates. I also spent 5 lovely days in the Tucson area at the Embassy Suites Paloma Village on points. I highly recommend this hotel if you’re in the area. Close enough to tour the Tucson area, but in a lovely part of town out of the chaos of downtown. Monkey Miles has reminded me to dream big and keep working at my goals. I was getting a little fatigued at “the hobby” but feel reinvigorated. We’re now saving up points for Tokyo in 2020. Your weekend warrior posts helped inspire this. Thanks for all the great posts and Merry Christmas!

  • Jim F. December 25, 2018

    I used miles and points to take my wife on (what was then) the longest flight in the world (DOH->AUK) by way of OSL and, serendipitously, transited Oslo on their national holiday. It was some of the most fun we ever had! Thanks to Monkey Miles and to all the BA bloggers for sharing all their tips to make such a trip possible. BA is a great community of bloggers who are generous with their tips, ideas and hacks; couldn’t have done it without everyone’s help!

  • Diane December 25, 2018

    We used points and miles to enjoy a trip to DC and Williamsburg this fall.

  • Jasanna Czellar December 25, 2018

    We used southwest and Marriott points to finally travel to Acadia National Park! It was amazing! Practically free flights that even ended up being delayed…so we got some good vouchers for future flights as well!

  • Diane December 25, 2018

    We used miles and points to enjoy a trip to DC and Williamsburg this fall

  • Lauren Valencia December 25, 2018

    We went to Japan! Due to a delta schedule change we got to fly the new delta suites from DTW to NRT. We then used CUR points for the Hyatt Regency, then went to Tokyo Disney & stayed at the Hilton Tokyo Bay. Then, after taking the bullet train to Kyoto & staying in a tradition ryokan we returned to Tokyo & redeemed cash & points for our last night at the Park Hyatt Tokyo. We flew home in JAL Biz & spent a night in San Francisco at the Grand Hyatt before using free Alaska miles (from the Alaska/virgin merger) to fly home. It was our 3rd points & miles trip since we started collecting points & miles in 2015!

  • Nathaniel H December 25, 2018

    We used 100K aeroplan miles for YYZ-GRU-JNB-SEZ-IST-VIE-TLV-YYZ, all visited in 3 weeks. Took a far bit of planning to ensure we remained within ticket redemption mileage allowance, not to use the same airport twice (connections) and to qualify for no backtracking! Great find and saved over $4k on a paid ticket for this routing.

  • Jamie D December 25, 2018

    Merry Christmas! I used points and miles to book my first major redemption, and it’s in early 2019, to Egypt with my family.

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