Monday, January 14, 2013

Dining Rewards - Don't Even Think About Paying Cash for Dinner

From my NYC trip at the beginning of the month, I have a good example of why you should never pay with cash for dinner.

I was checking account balances yesterday and noticed that my HHonors balance was a few thousand points higher than the last time I had checked.  I knew that points from my Hilton Amex and the points from my New Year's Eve stay had already posted as I mentioned in Friday's post.

It turns out that the points in question were from the HHonors Dining program.  Now I knew there would be a few points coming from dining in NYC, and I knew that the Gelato Stand in Grand Central Terminal is a participating business, but I had absolutely no idea that the restaurant we had went to for dinner on New Year's Eve was even part of the program.

My girlfriend had actually made the reservation at Megu Midtown through OpenTable, and earned OpenTable points for the reservation, so it appears possible double dip on reservations like this one.

I hadn't spent much cash so for the trip up until that point so I was considering leaving cash until I reminded myself to put it on my Chase Sapphire Preferred card since it earns double points on dining.  Overall, I ended up earning 2 Chase Ultimate Rewards points plus 8 HHonors Points per dollar spent.  It normally wouldn't be enough to have me going out of my way to pick a restaurant, but It's a nice bonus when you can get it.

In this case, it was a perfect scenario  This was by far the most expensive meal we ate in NYC, the food was excellent, and then later I find out I earned HHonors points.  Awesome.

Sashimi Cave at Megu Midtown

I'll likely be back to Megu on a future New York Trip, and you can bet I'll be making sure my card is registered with HHonors Dining.

If you already use a Dining Rewards program, now's a good time to double check that all of you credit cards are enrolled.  If you're not already using a dining program, there are several to choose from and the links are below.  I personally use HHonors Dining, but something else may work better for you.  I'll be doing a write up covering all of the programs in the next week or so to help you make your decision.

HHonors Dining
AAdvantage Dining
Mileage Plus Dining
SkyMiles Dining
Rapid Rewards Dining
Priority Club Dining


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