July 8 2016

Random Collection of Deals

Hope everyone is well! Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on one’s perspective) work continues to get in the way of my free time so I have been neglecting the blog!

Anyway, a friend taking a quick trip – with flights already booked on miles – jokingly asked how to get the rest of the trip for free. So I promised to pass along a few deals. Since I was compiling it all anyway, figured I’d post it on my little corner of the Internet in case anyone else finds it useful. 🙂

 

Food offers

Uber Eats is offering $20 off your first order. Feel free to use my referral code eats-ubermywanderlux (enter it in the “Promotions” tab of the app).

LivingSocial Restaurants Plus is offering $20 off your first meal at a participating restaurant. You need to join, register a credit card, and pay for your meal with that credit card. You’ll then earn a statement credit equal to the meal price (up to $20). At this time they have restaurants in only a handful of areas, but they are major metropolitan areas.

Grubhub frequently offers $10 off your first order of $15+. You need one of the ever-changing promo codes, but if you sign up for their emails I’m sure they’ll come. Be on the lookout for the $10 code, not the inferior $7 code. I seem to get a code at least weekly (I give them my spam email account, of course). Alternatively, try one of the recent codes on RetailMeNot.

Travel Is Free has a handful of additional ideas here.

 

Transportation offers

Both Uber and Lyft are offering signup bonuses. I don’t think I actually know anyone under age 60 who doesn’t already have at least one of those accounts, but perhaps you only have one and not both? If so, sign up for the other and get a bonus from that.

Current offers are $20 off your first Uber ride and $50 in free Lyft credit. (The bonus amounts change fairly often, but these are current as of this writing.)

 

$80 off Airbnb

If you don’t already have an Airbnb account, sign up through a referral link to earn a $30 travel credit. So get a friend to refer you, or send me a note if you’d like me to send you a referral.

Airbnb is also offering $50 after completing a “business” stay. Doctor of Credit’s blog has details here.

Note that, since the latter credit isn’t earned until after your stay, combining these offers doesn’t get you $80 off one stay. It’s $30 off the first stay and $50 off a subsequent stay.

Have a great weekend!

 

March 13 2015

1,000 Free Hilton HHonors Points & Complimentary Uber Ride in a Rolls-Royce

Happy Pi Day! (I know it’s actually tomorrow.) I hope everyone’s weekend is off to a great start.

Here are some deals for your weekend fix. 🙂

 

Easy 1,000 Hilton HHonors points

Free points don’t get much easier than this.

Hilton will eventually require members of its loyalty program to change from using a 4-digit PIN to a password.

They’re offering 1,000 points to members who make the change before March 25.

HHonors Banner Detail
Click to enlarge

Reset or create a password by:

  • Visiting www.HHonors.com/Login with your current username or HHonors number and existing password/PIN.
  • On the left-hand side, under the My Profile section, click “Personal Information.”
  • If you have a password, select “Change Password;” if you do not have a password, select “create username and password.”

I’m not much of a Hilton person these days but I still have a moderate amount of points in my account, so I take advantage of random opportunities like this to generate activity that resets the expiration clock on my points.

 

Free Uber ride in a Rolls-Royce

This weekend Uber is offering free rides in a Rolls-Royce in Los Angeles and New York City.

Uber RollsRoyce

The deal is pretty simple (instructions are found in the links above) but the catch is that there is limited availability and the coverage area is quite narrow.

In NYC rides are only available in Manhattan below 59th Street, and in LA the coverage map is as follows:

Uber RollsRoyce LA

I happen to be in one of the coverage areas tonight and fired up my Uber app to take advantage of this offer. But, alas, no Rolls-Royces were available nearby. So they’re not kidding about the limited availability. Better luck to others!

If you’re not already on Uber feel free to use my referral link, which currently gives $20 off your first ride.

 

December 8 2014

New Deals Page

American Express usually ramps up its promotions during the holidays, and this year there is a boatload of Sync offers.

Going forward, rather than write periodic posts on the offers I will just add them to the newly-created Other Deals page for easy reference.

The page includes every Sync deal I am aware of, but let me highlight below the offers I consider most interesting.

(If you are unfamiliar with the Amex Sync campaign, my introductory post is here.)

Travel related offers:

The following offers are not travel-related per se, but still particularly appealing for reasons I explain below:

  • Best Buy – spend $250+ get $25 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014). Appealing because Best Buy sells cash equivalents in store (I can’t remember if they’re Visa or MasterCard gift cards, but either way it lets you basically buy money at a discount) and gift cards to other merchants. #AmexBestBuy
  • JCPenney – spend $50+ get $10 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014). Appealing because JCPenney sells gift cards to other merchants, including Amazon, in store. #AmexJCPenney
  • Newegg – spend $200+ get $25 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), valid online only. Appealing because Newegg sells a wide selection of gift cards to other merchants (including airlines, cruise lines, restaurants, department stores, and movie theaters). #AmexNewegg
  • Office Depot OfficeMax – spend $50+ get $10 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014). Appealing because OfficeMax sells MC/Visa/Amex gift cards in store. (Office Depot also sells them but does not accept credit cards as payment.) #AmexOfficeDepot
  • Starbucks – spend $10+ get $5 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), valid online only at store.starbucks.com but should work when reloading a Starbucks card. Appealing for obvious reasons. 🙂 #AmexStarbucks
  • Toys R Us – spend $25+ get $5 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), valid in-store only. Appealing because Toys R Us carries gift cards to other merchants. #AmexToysRUs
  • Walmart – spend $15+ get $5 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014). Appealing because getting 33% off your grocery bill is otherwise rare. #AmexWalmart

Finally, here’s a random non-Amex offer that might interest some:

Bonefish Grill

Free dinner (up to $10) at Bonefish Grill. Expires December 30, but I have a feeling they may pull the deal sooner if it becomes “too popular.”

I will try to update both the Travel Deals Page and Other Deals Page frequently so be sure to drop by once in a while!

 

November 8 2014

Updated Amex Sync Offers: Save at Marriott, Best Buy, Starbucks, and Many Others

Holiday shopping season is already upon us (I know…) and the American Express Sync offers are ramping up.

A full list of all offers I currently know of (with Twitter hashtags if available) is below, but here are some highlights:

  • Best Buy: Spend $250+ get $25 back. This deal is useful for more than just Best Buy merchandise because many stores carry (1) gift cards to other retailers, including Kindle gift cards which are valid on anything sold at Amazon, and (2) Visa gift cards, which means you can essentially buy money at a discount. Everyone should be able to double dip by having a My Best Buy loyalty account (signup is free) to earn rewards. If you’re a college student, potentially triple dip through their student deals program.
  • Walmart: Spend $15+ get $5 back. While $5 is not a life-changing amount, if you shop at Walmart anyway then why not take a couple of seconds to sync your card and get the savings. (I bought an e-gift card and my statement credit posted without incident.)
  • McDonald’s: Spend $5+ get $5 back. Basically a free $5, but this offer is targeted so there is no Twitter or Facebook enrollment.
  • Starbucks: Spend $10+ get $5 back. Although the offer is online only, there are reports that it works when reloading a Starbucks card online. To potentially double dip, check your email for a load offer. The (modest) one I received is pictured below; hopefully you received a better one!

SBUX LoadOffer

There are also some good travel-related offers including for Marriott Hotels, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, and Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts. See below for more on those.

If you’re unfamiliar with this program, here is my primer on Amex Sync deals.

Tips and reminders

  • These deals can usually be combined with store offers and coupons, so there are often ways to double (and even triple or quadruple) dip. Since this is sort of a sport for me, I have occasionally managed to quintuple dip.
  • Many offers are valid on gift card purchases. If you don’t need anything from the merchant during the promotion period, you can lock in the savings by purchasing a gift card for future use. Likewise, if it’s a restaurant and you don’t spend that much at one meal, purchase a gift card to use over multiple visits. (Some offers exclude gift cards, so be sure to check first.)
  • Many offers have limited enrollment, and popular ones fill up quickly, so register sooner rather than later for the deals you’re interested in.

As always, carefully read the terms & conditions on every deal you participate in.

Offers

  • Alexis Bittar – spend $300+ get $60 back (exp. Nov. 15, 2014), not valid online
  • Allen Edmonds – spend $200+ get $50 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), #AmexAllenEdmonds
  • AllModern – spend $250+ get $50 back (exp. Nov. 20, 2014)
  • BCBG.com – spend $100+ get $20 back (exp. Nov. 30, 2014), valid online only, #AmexBCBG
  • BergdorfGoodman.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015), valid online only
  • Best Buy – spend $250+ get $25 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), #AmexBestBuy
  • Birch Lane – $40 off a purchase of $200+ (exp. Nov. 24, 2014), use promo code AMEX40
  • Birthday Express – $10 off a purchase of $50+ (exp. Nov. 21, 2014), use promo code AMEXBDAY
  • Blue Nile – $30 off a purchase of $100+ (exp. Jan. 31, 2015), use promo code AMEX30
  • Brooklyn Industries – spend $100+ get $20 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), #AmexBKIndustries
  • Brooks Brothers – spend $150+ get $30 back (exp. Nov. 21, 2014)
  • Bulgari – spend $500+ get $100 back (exp. Nov. 15, 2014), not valid online
  • Charles Tyrwhitt – spend $100+ get $30 back (exp. Nov. 9, 2014)
  • City Sports – spend $100+ get $20 back (exp. Nov. 30, 2014)
  • Comoncy Café – spend $15+ get $3 back (exp. Dec. 24, 2014), not valid online
  • The Company Store – spend $300+ get $100 back (exp. Nov. 10, 2014)
  • Conrad Hotels & Resorts – spend $400+ get $75 back (exp. Mar. 31, 2015), valid in the US only, #AmexConrad
  • Cusp.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015)
  • Dell.com – spend $1,000+ get $200 back (exp. Dec. 15, 2014), #AmexDell
  • FedEx – spend $10+ get $5 back (exp. Jan. 15, 2015)
  • FromYouFlowers.com – get $15 off a purchase of $24.99+ (exp. Nov. 30, 2014), use promo code AMEX
  • FragranceNet.com – get $10 off a purchase of $30+ (exp. Dec. 15, 2014), use promo code AMEX3
  • Gap Family of Brands – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015), valid online only at Gap.com, OldNavy.com, BananaRepublic.com, Piperlime.com, and Athleta.com
  • Godiva – spend $50+ get $10 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), #AmexGodiva
  • Gray & Sons Watches & Jewelry – spend $1,500+ get $450 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014)
  • Harrys Shoes – spend $100+ get $20 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014)
  • Henri Bendel – spend $200+ get $50 back (exp. Dec. 1, 2014), #AmexHenriBendel
  • J Brand – spend $300+ get $60 back (exp. Nov. 14, 2014)
  • Juan Juan Salon – spend $100+ get $20 back (exp. Nov. 27, 2014), not valid online
  • Kipling – spend $150+ get $30 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), #AmexKipling
  • LastCall.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015), not valid for in-store, outlet, or phone purchases
  • Macy’s – spend $100+ get $15 back (exp. Nov. 30, 2014)
  • Madewell – spend $125+ get $20 back (exp. Nov. 22, 2014), #AmexMadewell
  • Maison Birks – get 20% a purchase of $500+ (exp. Jan. 31, 2014), use promo code AMEX20
  • Mark and Graham – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. July 31, 2015)
  • Marriott Hotels – spend $200+ get $50 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), valid in US & Puerto Rico only, #AmexMarriott
  • McDonald’s – spend $5+ get $5 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014)
  • NeimanMarcus.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015), not valid for in-store, outlet, or phone purchases
  • Paperless Post – spend $125+ get $25 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014)
  • Paul Smith – spend $250+ get $50 back (exp. Dec. 15, 2014), not valid online
  • Personal Creations – spend $49+ get $15 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014)
  • Petco.com – spend $10+ get $5 back (exp. Nov. 30, 2014), valid online only, #AmexPetco
  • PotteryBarn.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015), also valid at PotteryBarnKids.com and PBteen.com; valid only online, by catalog, or by phone
  • Rebecca Taylor – spend $350+ get $70 back (exp. Nov. 30, 2014)
  • Red Envelope – spend $100+ get $20 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014)
  • The Red Room – spend $50+ get $10 back (exp. Jan. 24, 2015)
  • Reebok.com – spend $100+ get $25 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), valid online only
  • Rejuvenation.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015)
  • Seasons 52 – spend $50+ get $10 back (exp. Nov. 23, 2014), not valid online
  • Shari’s Berries – spend $50+ get $10 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), also valid at ProFlowers, Cherry Moon Farms, and ProPlants
  • Sony – spend $100+ get $25 back (exp. Feb. 3, 2015), #AmexSony
  • Starbucks – spend $10+ get $5 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), valid online only at store.starbucks.com but should work when reloading a Starbucks card #AmexStarbucks
  • Stuart Weitzman – spend $300+ get $60 back (exp. Dec. 6, 2014), valid online only
  • Uber – spend $10+ get $10 back (exp. Dec. 31, 2014), see my blog post for more on Uber and how to get a $30 signup bonus, #AmexUber
  • Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts – spend $500+ get $100 back (exp. March 31, 2015), valid in the US & Puerto Rico only, #AmexWaldorf
  • Walmart – spend $15+ get $5 back (exp. Nov. 30, 2014), #AmexWalmart
  • WestElm.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015); valid only online, by phone, or by catalog
  • Williams-Sonoma.com – get 2x Membership Rewards points (exp. Jul. 31, 2015), not valid for in-store, outlet and williams-sonoma wine purchases
October 8 2014

Up to $40 Free With Uber, 10% Rebate at Hilton & Embassy Suites

Good evening.

There are some travel deals I thought worth mentioning, but I have to keep it brief as I’m still at the hotel from hell (but checking out soon, thankfully).

The Internet here is…not fast. Today is actually one of the better days yet I’m still clocking dismal speeds.

I kid you not. This is from a few minutes ago:

Speedtest

Anyway, here are the deals!

Free $10 with Uber

A new Amex Sync promotion gives a $10 statement credit for spending $10 or more with Uber. The Twitter hashtag is #AmexUber in case the offer is not already in your account.

Uber Amex Sync

Additionally, if you don’t already have an Uber account you can get another free $30 in signup credit through a referral link (mine is here if you’d like).

If you’re unfamiliar with these sync offers see my Amex Sync primer, and if you’re unfamiliar with Uber I wrote about it here.

10% off at Hilton and Embassy Suites

If you have a Bank of America credit card, BofA currently has a couple of sync-like offers too.

One is for 10% cash back at a Hilton Hotels & Resorts property:

Hilton BankAmeriDeal

Another is for 10% back at Embassy Suites.

Embassy Suites BankAmeriDeals

You need to register for these offers, which can be done by logging into your credit card account and navigating to the “Cash Back Deals” tab.

A few tips:

  • Be sure to read the terms carefully as there are certain spending requirements.
  • Even though the offers expire November 11, it might be possible to “extend” that date by buying a gift card for future use. (I have not tried this so I cannot guarantee it, but I see no reason why you shouldn’t get the credit card rebate if you go to one of the qualifying properties and buy a gift card there.)
  • These rebates should combine with discounts and promotions offered by the hotel directly, so be sure to look for those too. For example, Hilton’s fall promotion is still going on.
  • The credit card charge needs to be from the hotel, so paying through a third party (such as Orbitz or Expedia) will most likely NOT work.

Enjoy!

 

October 4 2014

Travelocity $30-$40 Off, Earn Lyft Credit with TravelPony, and I Provoked Karma

Happy first weekend in October!

I am currently staying at a hotel, which will remain nameless, whose clientele I can only describe as – to be polite – trashy (for many reasons beyond the example below). How I ended up booking it is another story (let’s just say it was practically free after combining several promotions), but it seemed a solidly-ranked 3-star across several websites. I also read independent reviews and none raised red flags.

Apparently do-not-disturb signs are scarce here. But there was one in my room and I hung it outside my door when I arrived. Later I heard scratching on my door and someone mumbling something (probably an expletive). Of course I did not open the door.

That evening, when I left the room for dinner, my do-not-disturb sign was gone. After a quick glance, I saw it hanging on the room next door. (I know it was “my” sign due to a unique mark.)

Instead of calling housekeeping to request a sign, the neighbors apparently just helped themselves to mine – which I’d put there for a reason. Classy.

Now, I could’ve just taken it back. But I didn’t want to be spiteful, so I left it on their door.

However, when I came back from dinner I flipped it over to the other side – which says “early maid service please.”

Karma will probably bite me, but oh well. 🙂

Anyway, so as not to end on a rant, let me leave you with some travel deals for the weekend.

 

Travelocity mobile coupons

Travelocity is back with a couple of good discounts on hotels booked through the mobile app through tomorrow (October 5, 2014).

Travelocity mobile promos

Use code MOBILE30FALL for $30 off $100+ and MOBILE40FALL for $40 off $150+.

They often limit these discounts to first-time app bookings, but I did not see that requirement in the fine print this time. There are excluded properties though, so as always be sure to read the terms.

 

Lyft credit for stays booked through TravelPony

Speaking of apps, travel booking site TravelPony, which I recently wrote about, is out with one.

TravelPony & Lyft

They are offering Lyft credit when you book a qualifying hotel stay through the app. (Lyft is a competitor to Uber. If you’re unfamiliar, I describe the services here.)

Enjoy the remaining weekend.

 

June 21 2014

Uber $30 Signup Bonus & Free Rides in Halifax, Saigon, Toledo, Lexington

Uber Saigon
The Saigon skyline. (Image courtesy of Uber.)

If you haven’t gotten on the Uber bandwagon, now is a great time.

Just this week Uber increased its signup bonus to $30 (from $10) off your first ride if you use a qualified referral link. While Uber’s bonuses occasionally change, sometimes without notice, $30 is currently the best offer I know of.

So find a friend with a working link, or feel free to use my referral link (thank you!).

Furthermore, when the company launches in a new market it sometimes offers free rides for a couple of weeks. Current offers include:

Be sure to use the appropriate promotion code specified for each offer.

If you’re not familiar with Uber…

The company has been in the news lately, and if its valuation of $17 billion (or $18 billion-plus, depending on who’s counting) is not enough to convince you, I’ll add my 2 cents below by (lazily) repeating part of an earlier post.

Uber is a car service where you request a ride through their mobile app. I’ve been using the service for a while and just love it. Among the reasons:

  • No waiting in long taxi lines at airports. After hitting the “request a ride” button on my app, I’ve never had to wait more than a few minutes for a car to arrive. The app tracks the car’s progress toward me and indicates the estimated wait time down to the minute.
  • No standing on the street trying to flag down a cab – and risking being run over in the process. I just wait comfortably in the hotel lobby until the car arrives.
  • The cars are clean and not smelly. I cannot say the same of most taxis I’ve been in.
  • No cash needed; payment is by credit card via the app.
  • uberX rates are generally comparable to taxi fares. Sometimes more (but well worth the small premium) and sometimes less. (Note that uberBLACK, which provides higher-end cars, is priced differently.)

And finally, but perhaps most importantly, I feel safer using Uber (or Lyft). Through hundreds (or maybe thousands) of cab rides over the years, I’ve occasionally pondered the possibility that if I were to hop into the “wrong” cab and a deranged cabbie decided to drive somewhere remote and kill me nobody might ever know. With Uber, a lot is electronically tracked – the driver’s identity, my pickup time and location, and even the route driven.

I am by no means suggesting that cabbies are bad people, but when it comes to rides from random strangers I would prefer to get into a tracked car over a random cab.

Total tangent: Whether all this makes the company worth $18 billion, give or take, is another matter. Personally I think we’re in a Fed-enabled and artificially inflated stock market bubble that is leading to hyper valuations of a lot of companies, but that’s just another of my $0.02 (and certainly not to be taken as any kind of financial or investment advice either way).

But hey, if they’re offering free rides, enjoy ‘em. When something’s free, I don’t complain about the price. 🙂

Category: Deals, Uber | LEAVE A COMMENT
June 5 2014

More Free Rides from Uber – Austin, Salt Lake City & the Inland Empire

[Update 6/6/14: added Austin!]

Uber SLC

After yesterday’s post about the great deal on free uberX rides in Miami and Orlando, I learned of more cities with similar promotions:

  • Austin: 20 free rides up to $25 each (ends June 19, 2014).
  • Salt Lake City: 20 free rides up to $20 each (ends June 9, 2014).
  • Inland Empire (Southern California): $10 free rides up to $25 each (ends June 12, 2014).

Be sure to use the promotion codes specified in each deal.

These are generous promotions that I hope some readers will have opportunity to use. I’m sure the freebies will dwindle over time as Uber matures, so definitely take advantage while they’re offered.

For newbies, be sure to see yesterday’s post which describes the Uber car service and has tips on signup methods that earn even more freebies.

Category: Deals, Tips, Uber | LEAVE A COMMENT
June 4 2014

Quick Deal Notes: $49 Flights on Frontier, Free uberX Rides in Miami & Orlando

Happy Wednesday – we are “over the hump” toward another weekend!

A couple of deals to mention today…

Free uberX rides in Miami and Orlando

Car service Uber recently launched in Miami and Orlando and is offering free rides in those areas through June 20!

Miami
Miami

The offers:

If you’re not yet a member, use a signup offer for additional credit. Here are a few options:

  • Code “DELTA25” is rumored to give a $25 credit, although I have not seen that confirmed.
  • AmazonLocal occasionally offers free vouchers for $25 off your first ride. At this writing one is offered for the Chicago area (expires June 6). Other markets may be available too.
  • If you don’t want to gamble on the first option and the second option is unavailable, feel free to use my referral link for a $10 credit.
  • (Signup offers cannot be combined.)

If you’re unfamiliar with Uber, it’s a car service where you request a ride through their mobile app. I’ve been using the service for a while and just love it. Among the reasons:

  • No waiting in long taxi lines at airports. After hitting the “request a ride” button on my app, I’ve never had to wait more than a few minutes for a car to arrive. The app tracks the car’s progress toward me and indicates the estimated wait time down to the minute.
  • No standing on the street trying to flag down a cab. I just wait comfortably in the hotel lobby until the car arrives.
  • The cars are clean (and not smelly) – more than I can say about most taxis I’ve been in.
  • No cash needed; payment is by credit card via the app.
  • uberX rates are generally comparable to taxi fares. Sometimes more (but well worth the small premium) and sometimes less. (Note that uberBLACK, which provides higher-end cars, is priced differently.)

And finally, but perhaps most importantly, I feel safer using Uber (or Lyft). Through hundreds (or maybe thousands) of cab rides over the years, I’ve occasionally pondered the possibility that if I were to hop into the “wrong” cab and a deranged cabbie decided to drive somewhere remote and kill me nobody might ever know. With Uber, a lot is electronically tracked – the driver’s identity, my pickup time and location, and even the route driven.

I am by no means suggesting that cabbies are bad people, but when it comes to rides from random strangers I would prefer to get into a tracked car over a random cab.

$49 flights on Frontier Airlines

Frontier is offering flights for $49 between select markets. (Link)

Frontier promo

Book by June 9 and fly by November 19, 2014. Not all dates are available at this price, but once you select a route a handy fare calendar should pop up.

Note that Frontier now charges a fee for carry-on bags (items fitting under the seat are still free).

Finally, don’t forget the Southwest sale, with fares from $45, continues through June 5.