How to Find the Best Credit Card for Your Travels

We’re sharing our review of Thrifty Traveler’s credit card consultation, it’s a cool tool we recently discovered that recommends the perfect next travel credit card for your unique situation. We walk through how to use the tool, what credit cards it recommended for us, and how to get the most out of travel credit card points to make the offer worth it.

We partnered with Thrifty Traveler to bring you this episode. Go to ⁠thriftytraveler.com/premium⁠ and use promo code TS10 to get $10 off your first year of the premium subscription to access your free credit card consultation and daily flight deals.

Credit Card Consultation – Episode Transcript


Welcome to the Travel Squad podcast where adventure meets inspiration.

We’re your host.

I’m Brittany.

I’m Kim.

And I’m Jamal.

Together, we explore international destinations, hike epic national parks, and share unforgettable travel experiences with you, one passport stamp at a time.


Our mission is to inspire you to travel by showing you how you can make it work, no matter your budget, schedule or experience level.

We bring you along so that you can laugh and get excited and start planning your own trip.

So grab your ticket and your passport.

And don’t forget your travel insurance.


And get ready to embark on a new adventure with us around the globe.

Hey Squaddies, Travel Squad Podcast is back with Just the Tip.

A new Friday mini episode series where we give you quick travel stories, hacks and recommendations to set you off into the weekend, right?


Today we are sharing a hack for mastering credit card points and offers AKA for free travel.

You’ve heard us talk a lot about Thrifty Traveler, and today we’re going to share with you one of their amazing perks that we actually just sent out about, which is their credit card consultation.


Just to recap, Thrifty Traveler is a travel website dedicated to helping travelers find affordable flights.

They have a free platform as well as a premium service.

The premium platform gives you so many perks and notifies you of the best cash and point deals, but Thrifty Traveler offers so much more.


They have destination guides, travel tips and of course the credit card consultations.

So we have been using Thrifty Traveler for at least six months now, maybe a little bit more.

We have set our home airports so that in our e-mail we get only deals that are in our location sent to us.


But we we, you know, we can still log on and see all deals everywhere.

So we were logging in, browsing around.

They have a ton of other content there.

So we’re kind of like reading, trying to get our skill sets up and strategizing points for free travel.

That’s like one of my personal goals this year and we stumbled upon one of their features, credit card Consulting.


And so we talked to our Rep and come to find out this is a free benefit that everyone that subscribes to Thrifty Traveler Premium gets access to.

So what do we do?

All three of us submit an inquiry to see what kind of travel rewards credit cards they would recommend for us.


What did you guys think?

Well, because we have access to a Rep behind the scenes, I think we learned a lot from the process.

So first, when you sign in and you do the credit card consultation, it starts with like a quick questionnaire.

It asks about your current travel cards, the point balances you might have, travel goals you have.


And So what they try to do is collect all that information and try to make the best possible recommendation.

So one thing that we learned was that even if they do give you a recommendation, sometimes their initial response is just a starting point based off of the information you’ve given them.


So they try to take into consideration some of the, like limited time offers, credit cards they’re offering, or what types of points and miles would work for what travel goals you gave them.

But if for whatever reason, you feel like the recommendation that they gave you doesn’t really appeal to you, you could actually reply back to that e-mail and just say, hey, I was thinking about going in this direction.


Or do you have another recommendation instead and you can actually start a chat with them through your e-mail dialogue?

And there’s no limit on how much you can use this.

So say you use it today, You get your credit card recommendation.

You really like it.

Or maybe you go back and forth for a little bit until you come to one that you think is really good.


You apply.

You get it.

Maybe six months later down the road, you want to see what else is out there.

You know, once you start using points a lot, it’s kind of the game how many credit cards you can get, which ones you need to cancel and really working the system to get free travel.

So you will probably want another credit card at some point in the near future.


You can just go straight back to them and pick up the conversation.

And some of the questions that they ask are what other credit cards you have or have you had a Chase credit card in the last year because they’re aware of some of the restrictions and what cards would be better for you based on the other ones you currently have in your wallet?


And the rules of these credit card companies that they put in place for their promotions offers, it’s always changing.

So even if you’re trying to keep up with it or novice or professional, here are actual real professionals whose job it is to actually know 100% of everything that’s going on to give you the best advice.


So it doesn’t really hurt.

And let me tell you something, we have finally booked our first big international vacation with Oints.

We are flying from Los Angeles to Thailand on Singapore Airlines business class for 17 hours.


I can’t even wait on one of the world’s best airlines that there is.

And it’s just like I am so hyped up on points and utilizing it every which way because I don’t want to have to pay for those things out of pocket via cash.

I want to use the points on my everyday purchases.

So this platform is going to really help you leverage to do that and they give you that set of about 2025 questions to start and they really cater it to you.


And to just really hammer that on that point that Brittany had mentioned, you know they’re going to give you a basis, but keep that thread going because from there you can ask more detailed questions to which they will respond with more detailed answers for you.

And the deal that we booked our credit card points with Thrifty Traveler Premium even featured it in a e-mail that was sent out to everyone on the premium service as well.


So that’s another perk of the platform we.

Did a whole episode with the founder of Thrifty Traveler.

This was back in January of 2024 where we really break down what the whole platform has to offer on the free side and with the premium flight deal notification system.


So if you want more details on everything outside of the credit card consultation, go back to that episode, because there are a ton of really good strategies and tips in there.

And so, going back to the credit card consultation, their feature that they have isn’t for a one to one trip planning.


So they’re able to tell you about what type of points you should be earning to get to a certain travel goal, and it’ll help point you in the right direction.

But like, they can’t plan a vacation for you.

Just to be clear, unfortunately I wish they.


Well, it’s kind of like they do if you take advantage of flight offers and stuff.


Yes, they do put a lot of that strategy into some of their other content.

But I do feel like you can work with them if you told them I want to fly first class Singapore Airlines to Thailand.

And I know based on your emails and your blog posts that I’ve read up on, it’s going to cost around 50 to 100,000 points.


What credit card could I get that will get me closer to that amount of points?

Or what credit card has like a really good bonus offer right now that I could bank and and book it quicker with.

So I think because they have the background not just of credit cards but of flight deals and point strategy that they they’d be able to help you.


Speaking of the point strategy, Kim, as a bonus to the credit card consultation on their website they have written several guides on how to transfer the points that you earn on your credit card and how to use them best for which airlines and how to navigate that based off of its code, shared or not.


So really great resources to really leverage the points that you’re earning too.

You know what else I really liked about it was how fast they got back to me.

I think within less than 24 hours on a weekday I had my response back on what credit card to get and I don’t know why.


I thought it would take like a week or so, but they’re really fast.

Jamal and I both applied I think on a Friday, so they got back to us I think on Monday.

So really quick turn around for us as well.

I wonder, we didn’t ask this question, we just asked what credit card should we get next.

I wonder if we could ask like say we have a goal of first class Singapore Airlines to Thailand and we know it’s going to be 100,000 points, which I feel like it would be a lot more than that unless you get a good deal.


I wonder if they could help tell you multiple credit cards that you can get.

I know on mine they gave some answers around how you can transfer different transfer partners that they have and I’m sure they could if you got back to them.

Just asked like, hey, I’m looking for maybe multiple credit cards that I can combine for this one particular goal that I have.


They’re so savvy, I think they’d have multiple options for you.

So as we mentioned, all three of us applied to their credit card consultation.

So Kim, why don’t you tell us what credit card they recommended for you next?

So I did the form.


I let them know the credit cards that I have and it’s mostly the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

I also have a Chase with Southwest and then I have like a United card and an old Delta card that I need to cancel.

I also have an old Carnival Cruise Line card that I need to cancel, but I don’t use those ones.


So anyway, told them all that they gave me Capital One Venture Rewards.

They had shared a ton of information about it.

It’s got 75,000 Capital One venture miles after you spend 4 grand on the card in the first three months.

If anyone knows my shopping habits, that’s not going to be a problem.


And they gave a whole bunch of other details too, right?

Like other stuff that it comes with and other point accrual stipulations that it has.

It came with two annual complimentary passes to the Capital.

One lounges, $100 credit for TSA Pre Global Entry, Two time smiles on every dollar spent five times on hotels and rental cars.


They shared some information on how the points could be transferred to a slew of other airline partners, or how you could use those points to pay yourself back for travel.

Tons of other details like the annual fee if it has foreign transaction fees, which you know is really important Things like authorized users.

So all that information you would find if you were doing the research on your own, they just send it straight to your e-mail within a day.


What I loved about the card that they recommended for you, Kim, was that it only has a $95 annual fee, which is so low with all of the perks that you get.

Right, because you first would think Capital One Venture X, that’s the best travel credit card, but apparently it’s not for my particular use case.


So I also filled out that form.

I have the Chase Southwest card and then I do have the Venture X Travel credit card, so a little different from the one that was recommended to Kim.

And then I also have a Chase Sapphire preferred card because Jamal has the Sapphire Reserve card.


So based off of what I told them, the credit cards I already have, they recommended that I get the American Express Platinum card.

They said that this is one of the best cards for airport lounge access and it includes Delta Sky Club.

It does have a little bit of a higher annual fee.


It’s $695, but they even went into how you can offset this by using the annual credits like they do a $200.00 of airline statement credits, $200 in Uber and Uber Eats credits, and then you can do like $240 and up to in digital entertainment.


And it also covers clear as well.

If you are status members of Marriott, Bonvoy or Hilton Honors, it upgrades you your status and you can get a credit for Global Entry and pre-check.

So the welcome offer is 80,000 points, but you have to spend 8000 in six.



That sounds like a good one.

Yeah, you know, it really wasn’t even on my list of credit cards I was potentially considering.

So open me up a little.

I haven’t applied for it yet, but I have it on my back burner right now.

Same I haven’t applied yet, but once I clean up some of those older ones, I’m going for it.


Platinum baby for both you ladies, for me, of course when I did it and you know we talked about some of the questions, but when they ask you two in those questions what credit cards you have, they will also ask you when you actually applied for that card.

If you remember, the reason why is because you are eligible for promotions every so often once a certain amount of time goes on, right?


So I let them know that I have to chase Sapphire Reserve talk about that card all the time here on our podcast.

Their recommendation to me, which is something I never even thought about, is I’m eligible for the sign up boziness again with that card.

Well, how can I do it for that card if I already have it?


They gave the recommendation of downgrade my card to the Chase Freedom, which still allows me to keep my Chase Ultimate rewards which I’ve earned, and then reapply for the Sapphire Reserve and then get those bonus points once I meet the minimum spend of what they have.


And the usual go of points that they give for the Chase Sapphire Reserve is 60,000.

That’s usually their base, but depending on the time frame on when I do it, of course, sometimes the promo offer is a lot higher, up to 75 thousand, I’ve seen even 80,000.

So really telling me, hey, keep all your points, downgrade your card to the freedom and then reapply anew for it and just go for it that way versus doing any other cards.


So I thought that was a really unique perspective that I’ve never thought of, to keep a credit card that I love.

Very, very savvy.

Like I’m thinking about that too, because those bonus offers are really so helpful for the bulk of your point.

But see, you’ve applied for your sapphire or recently, so you’re not within that time frame of eligible bonus, but it would be good to get them back on that thread and re ask them based off of the date in which you applied.


But I think it’s too early for you.

Kim, how many years do you think it is?

It’s 48 months.

Well then, few more.

Few more you go.

There you go.

But that’s some of the unique stuff that they’re going to throw at you that you wouldn’t even think concept wise to do where they have those dedicated professionals, like I said earlier, know all the insurance and outs to really give you those unique tips.


It’s such a cool feature and the credit card consultation if you want to access it, it is a premium feature.

The premium subscription is usually $89.00 a year.

That gets you access to that all of their internal content that they have there and then the flight deal subscription where you can get emails straight to you or you can log in and see everything.


Right now we do have a promo code you all can use TS10 to take $10 off your first year of your subscription and really it’s so worth it.

I mean you heard Brittany and Jamal found their deal on Singapore First Class there.

So that’s awesome.


And and truly, if you just book one flight with the deal that you find through Thrifty, it probably very likely is going to pay for itself 10 times over because on average you can save around $250 per flight on every deal that you book through Thrifty Traveler Premium.


I mean, it’s really such a great deal.

I’ve loved being a Thrifty Traveler Premium member and going into the portal and like looking around.

It makes me even more excited for travel and to see all of the deals that are out there.

Like, I really want to travel on the cheap in the upcoming years with all of these deals I see.


Deals and Points.


Deals and Points and Thrifty sends them your way.

Especially with the Premium feature, you need it to really up your game to spend the least amount on your travels.

Hey squatty, thanks so much for tuning into just the tip.

Make sure to subscribe, leave a review and follow us on all the socials at Travelsquad Podcast.


And have fun traveling this weekend.

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