This hardworking writer and author took his first real vacation in years with his wife thanks to the points he earned on his Chase Sapphire Reserve®.
Name: Victor Li Age: 40 Occupation: Assistant managing editor, ABA Journal and author of "Nixon in New York: How Wall Street Helped Richard Nixon Win the White House" Residence: Chicago Credit card: The Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Route: Depart from O’Hare International Airport - Chicago to Heathrow Airport - London, return from Charles de Gaulle Airport - Paris to O’Hare Dates of travel: Sept. 12 - 22, 2018 Airlines: United Airlines (departure), Swiss Air (return) Class of service: Economy
Q: Did you visit a lounge at the airport?
Q: Did you travel alone or with someone?
A: I traveled with my wife for our first real vacation in several years.
The credit card
Q: What card did you use to get a free trip?
A: The Chase Sapphire Reserve®.
» Learn more: Chase 5/24 rule explained
Q: How long were you a cardholder/member at that time?
A: Five years.
Q: How long were you planning/saving for this trip?
A: Four months.
Q: What's your favorite perk of this card?
A: The points.
Q: Did you take advantage of promotions while earning points for this trip?
Q: How did you book?
A: I booked through the Chase travel portal.
Q: How many points/miles/rewards did this cost?
A: 85,148 points [for both Li and his wife].
Q: Did you book in conjunction with a promotion or deal?
Q: Any surprises?
What's your next travel rewards goal?
We have to build up our reserve a bit, but we'd love to go to Taiwan, Hong Kong, Tokyo or Singapore next.
Photo via Victor Li.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2021, including those best for:
Airline miles and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card
Flat-rate rewards with no annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Premium travel rewards: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Planning a trip? Check out these articles for more inspiration and advice: How I flew for free: Miles to the rescue for a family emergency How I flew for free: Round trip NYC to India using Chase Ultimate Rewards How I flew business class to Bangkok with my family for free