Best rewards credit card for travel US to Japan?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by happytraveler24, Apr 21, 2011.  |  Print Topic


What is the best rewards credit card for easy accumulation and redemption?

Poll closed May 5, 2011.
  1. Delta SkyMiles AMEX

    0 vote(s)
  2. AMEX Premier Rewards Gold

  3. CHASE United Mileage Plus

  4. CITI AAdvantage

  5. CAP ONE Venture Card

  6. CHASE Continental OnePass

  1. Which credit card rewards program will help me earn a RT ticket from US (DEN) to Japan (TYO) the fastest?

    Should I concentrate on one airline credit card (ie Delta SkyMiles) or should I focus on an AMEX Rewards card? I have 12 months to plan a trip and would like earn miles as aggressively as I can.

    Are there credit cards in the US which give you miles on JAL?
    What is the best airline to fly from DEN to Tokyo?

    I see good deal from Delta right now, DEN-SEA-TYO. Should we bank our miles with Delta? I see that it will take 35-60K each way on Delta.

    Suggestions appreciated.
  2. IMGone
    Original Member

    IMGone Silver Member

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    Sounds like there are two of you - are you both getting a cc?
    Is your credit able to handle one or more cc? or is there only going to be one (per, or only one total)?
    Look first to the initial miles promotion you would get with the cc, then the earning potential. There might be a card worth getting just for the promotion, then dropping it soon after.
  3. JALPak
    Original Member

    JALPak Gold Member

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    How about BA Chase? 100K sign up bonus, enough for 1 J or 2Y to Japan on AA.

    And yes, JAL does have a card: JAL USA Card referral campaign
  4. gleff
    Original Member

    gleff Co-founder

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    Huge signup bonuses are great. Grab the BA card while it's still offering 100k.

    After that, it does depend on your reward goals. :)

    But in general.
    * Starwood Amex. Poitns transfer 1:1 into many programs plus 5k bonus for transferring 20k in most cases (not good for UA/CO/SQ transfers).
    * Asiana Amex. 2 miles per dollar, $40k spend gets you business class from the east coast to europe with 4 stopovers in addition to destination (80k miles for 10k flown mile business award)
    * Membership Rewards points are great, flexible with several partners and unlike SPG the transfers in many cases (eg Aeroplan, delta, continental) take place instantly which makes redeeming a breeze.
  5. chemist562
    Original Member

    chemist562 In Memorian

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    1. I would apply for two 75K personal AA cards at the same time. Apply for 1, then immediately apply for the 2nd card. Best to clear "cookies" before each application. 3 months laters (95 days), apply for the 75K business card. There is a very good thread on FT, read post #2 which is updated often.

    2. Apply for the 100K BA card.

    Of course, each person can apply for the cards.

    Alot of people don't care for DL, takes too many miles to get awards. My coworker paid 160K DL to go to MNL (in coach!) and for her next trip, it will only take 130 or 150K on AA for business class.
  6. I am not a fan of chasing sign up bonuses,as a credit card is something you want to keep for sometime, strangely as soon as you close one your credit score goes down.

    I would suggest you determine which airline or alliance partner you want to fly to Japan:

    United -Star Alliance - Partner ANA (Hubs in Tokyo and Osaka)
    American- One World Alliance - Japan Airlines (Hubs Tokyo and Osaka)
    Delta - SkyTeam Alliance
    Starwood - transfer into ANA, American or Asiana
    AMEX - transfer into ANA, Continental, Delta, or British Airways

    Once you have a good idea about which flight you want now its time to figure out which credit card is a good fit for you. As the value of a credit card changes greatly with how you plan on using it, a resource to consider is the marscreditcardcalculator it allows you to put in how you spend and use miles to determine the best card for you.

    Miles Junky

    PS if you need help sorting through awards charts, partner airline lists try looking at marsfrequentflyer a site that has done all the bookmarking for you to quickly figure out which partner and how many miles.
  7. PanAm
    Original Member

    PanAm Silver Member

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    Well we (family of 3) just came back from a nice trip to Japan, courtesy of the 100K BA Visa bonus (200K total between the wife and me)...50K RT each using the One Partner Award and flying on AA. So that's an easy option if you can get approved. Match up the miles required on a given airline with available offers and see what looks like the best fit for you.

    As to which airline is "best", I don't know...probably AA isn't the "best" but it was the most efficient use of miles in our situation and our trip was fine (as fine as TPAC in Y can be!). I'd say an Asian carrier would probably provide better service but havent the experience to really comment, I'm sure others on here can lend some opinions in that regard.
  8. Thanks everyone for the suggestions! My husband-to-be and I are trying to plan the trip to Japan for 2012, and we are likely only to have one credit card between us - one AMEX etc, that we can start to use every month for all bills and then pay it off every month. I'm hearing lots of recommendations on the BA card.
  9. Good to know about your personal family experience on AA. We have the most AA and United miles right now, and being in Denver, United is usually a good way to go if we want more options. We can fly through SEA though, and would probably do so to see friends there on the way.

    Very interesting on the Starwood points transferring into ANA, American and Asiana - we are big fans of Starwood! Thank you for the tip on marscreditcardcalculator too!
  10. MilesJunky -

    I am new to learning about AMEX rewards, and like the idea of Starwood because we are big Starwood fans, and banking up their rewards is something we would enjoy over the long run. Is Membership Rewards something you can add onto any AMEX card - ie, can we get the Starwood AMEX card, but also enroll in additional Membership Rewards to get the most bang for our buck?

    The Mars calculator is great, but I'm having a hard time deciphering the details on different types of AMEX cards. We'd like to earn miles toward Germany as well, as we would be interested in traveling more regularly to Berlin from DEN. We don't think we will get approved for the BA 100K card, but may try that route too. Have to pick before we apply, to watch our credit scores of course. MilePoint has been just great in helping me learn more about all of this... what a great resource!


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