Can you use miles from different credit cards towards the same flight?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Credit Cards' started by minicait999, Oct 29, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. minicait999

    minicait999 New Member

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    So, I'm very new to all this, and I recently bought an American Express credit card which will give me 30,000 miles to use. If I sign up for a different credit card which also offers me 30,000 miles, can I use all 60,000 miles towards the same flight, or do I have to use them separately?
    Thanks!
     
  2. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

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    What kind of credit cards? Do you earn membership rewards points or true airline miles?
     
  3. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Gold Member

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    This is key. Amex gives you Membership Rewards points which convert to miles on some airlines and are usable for part of the cost of a ticket on others. Depending on the second card, if it transfers points to miles in the same program, you could combine miles and use them together. Otherwise, it'd likely be difficult (read: impossible) to use both points-as-cash credits at the same time on the same transaction since it usually requires you to apply them to a charge on that particular card.

    Which cards and programs?
     
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  4. minicait999

    minicait999 New Member

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    I am getting true airline miles. I got an American Express card and the guy I spoke with on the phone about it said that my 30,000 miles would translate to about $300 towards a ticket. I don't have a second card yet--I'm only in a rush to get one if I can combine miles. How do I find out if a card transfers points or miles to miles in the same program? What are the names of these various 'programs', and what should I google to find out more about them? At this point, I really know absolutely nothing (I'm young, I've never had a credit card before) other than that I want to get some cheap flights. Thanks so much for helping!
     
  5. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

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    Sounds like you are not getting true airline miles, unless perhaps you have a Delta Amex and you would use Delta's "pay with points" featured, which is usually a REALLY bad idea.

    Let's start further back. Are you enrolled in an airline's frequent traveler program and, if so, have you accrued any mileage with any of them?

    Anyhow, I'm oversimplifying here, but there are two general types of rewards credit cards. Some let you accrue "points" in the credit card's program. You can exchange those points for things like gift cards or overpriced merchandise. You can also use the points as partial or full credit towards an airline ticket. But however you look at it, the points are basically just a small cash rebate. Examples of points cards are "Amex Premier Rewards Gold Card" or the "Chase Ultimate Rewards Visa". With some few exceptions, these points are not combinable with points from another card.

    The other type of rewards card lets you accrue points directly into a frequent flyer or frequent guest program. At every billing cycle any points you earned are transferred directly into the program represented by the card. One transferred, the rules of your particular frequent flyer/frequent guest program determine what you can do with the points. Examples of these cards are "Amex Delta Skymiles Gold Card" or "Chase Marriott Rewards Visa". These cards also often give you benefits with that particular loyalty program in addition to earning points in the program. For example, you might get a free checked bag when you travel with an airline if you have that airline's credit card.

    Some cards are kind of a hybrid -- you earn points which have a cash value but you also may be able to transfer these points into an airline or hotel loyally program.

    We could go on for pages getting into the different types cards and programs and many people have done so far more eloquently and thoroughly than I'm likely to do! But let us know a little about how you plant to travel and which cards you have an then perhaps we can make suggestions. For example, are you looking for cheap short domestic flights or things like flights to Asia in first class? Does one carrier dominate the airport you typically fly from? Is your travel schedule flexible? How often do you plan to fly?
     
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  6. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Gold Member

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    A) Which AMEX?

    B) If they're true airline miles that's a very tough comparison to make, it sounds more like a description of points, e.g. a penny per point.

    Sent from my iPhone using milepoint
     
  7. satman40

    satman40 Gold Member

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    I often use AA one way and return on UA from the same destination.
    So two CC same trip...
    Just another way to get it done..
     
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