Talking Points with Thrifty Traveler: March 30th

Talking Points With Thrifty Traveler

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Our weekly series, Talking Points with Thrifty Traveler, is designed to help readers answer any questions they might have for the Thrifty Traveler team. The questions can be anything from credit card points & miles, travel recommendations, flight questions, or anything you want us to answer. Have a question? Email me at [email protected] to be featured in our Friday Talking Points segment.


I have the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card. Can I use the free night it provides at a Starwood hotel? – Kim. H 

Back in 2016, Marriott purchased Starwood to become the largest hotel company in the world. Since the merger, there has been a lot of speculation on how they are going to integrate the Marriott & Starwood (SPG) loyalty programs. To date, this has not yet begun (with the exception of being able to transfer your points between the two programs).

While Marriott/SPG is now one company, you are not yet able to use the free night offered from the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card at a Starwood property. My guess is this is something we will see added later this year or at some point in 2019.


I need to transfer points to my Air France/KLM Flying Blue account from Chase Ultimate Rewards. How long does the transfer take to complete? – Gary W.

One of the many reasons I love Chase Ultimate Rewards points is the flexibility they provide when it comes to redemptions. Not only can you use the points earned from credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred & Chase Sapphire Reserve to book flight deals you find here at Thrifty Traveler, but you can also use them to transfer into 13 different partners.

In order to do this, you must have a loyalty account with the airline or hotel program you are trying to transfer into. In my experience, almost all of the transfers happen instantaneously with the exception of a few hotel partners (IHG, Marriot & Ritz-Carlton) which can take a day or two. This being said, your transfer into FlyingBlue should be instant.


I booked a flight deal that departs out of Chicago and connects in Minneapolis. I live in Minneapolis. What will happen if I skip the first leg of my trip (ORD-MSP)? – Aaron J. 

If you miss ANY leg of a booked itinerary, the rest of your itinerary will be canceled. You can not miss that first leg from ORD to MSP, or both your outbound and return flights will be voided. You will need to book a positioning flight from MSP to ORD in this situation.

The only instance in which you would be able to do this is if the leg you are not flying is the last leg of the entire itinerary. In this situation, it obviously wouldn’t matter if the reservation were canceled as your trip would be completed. For more information on this topic, see our post here.


Bottom Line

Have a question you want answered? Send them to [email protected] to be featured in our weekly segment, Talking Points with Thrifty Traveler.


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