My Month in Travel Hacking- January 2019 Report

Welcome to the first edition of my monthly travel hacking report! The point of this post is to update you with my progress in the travel hacking world. I hope that this report will provide some insight into what a typical month looks like in terms of travel hacking and just how many points it is possible to earn in just 30 days.

New Cards

For the month of January the only new card I signed up for was the Gold Card from American Express. I was lucky enough to snag that beautiful limited edition Rose Gold color just a couple days before Amex ended the promotion.

I signed up for the Gold Card because of the awesome 4x back on points at US restaurants and supermarkets. The card also offer 3x points back on flights booked directly with airlines or on which is a great option if you do not have the Platinum Card from American Express, which offers 5x points back on travel.

I also picked up the Gold Card because of the referral offer of 50,000 MR points after a minimum spend of $2,000 in the first 3 months, which is actually higher than the current pubic offer of only 25,000 MR points. You can find that 50k point offer here.

I will be posting a review of the American Express Gold Card on the blog soon, so stay tuned for that.

Points Earned


In January I earned 172k Hilton Honor points, thanks to the sign-up bonus on the Hilton Aspire Card, which is currently 150k points after $4k spend in the first 3 months. This Aspire card is incredibly valuable right now, I can’t imagine American Express and Hilton continue offering this card without stripping some of the perks and benefits away. You may want to sign up for this card sooner rather than later.

I also met the minimum spending requirement on my SPG Luxury Card. I took advantage of the 125k point bonus after $5k spend in the first three months, so those points should be posting next month. The SPG Luxury Card is being rebranded to the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card soon, more details here.

Point Redemptions

I didn’t redeem any points for flights or hotel rooms this month, but I did use the SPG Luxury Card $300 statement credit to book a room at the Adolphus Hotel in Dallas for just $71 on New Years Eve.

Next Cards

I have yet to make a decision on what my next card will be after I hit the minimum spend on the Amex Gold Card, but I have my eye on a few American Airlines cards.


I am strongly considering the AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite Mastercard simply because Barclays just increased the welcome offer to 60,000 miles after the first purchase using the card. Those 60k miles make the $95 annual fee well worth it. I may also pair that with the AAdvantage Aviator Business Mastercard from Barclays, currently offering 50k AAdvantage miles after $1k spend in the first 90 days. Those two cards make it pretty easy to earn a quick 110k AAdvantage miles.

That is my monthly travel hacking report for January. I am already excited for February and seeing all of the new credit card offers that will be hitting the market.

How did January go for you? Let me know down below all of the points you earned and new cards you signed up for!

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*This post contains referral links as well as promotional offers that may no longer be available.