Pick plastic for cheaper flights

August 17, 2008|By Tom Parsons | Tom Parsons,McClatchy-Tribune

If you are looking for deals in the current travel climate, it is time to get creative.

One of the ways you can save creatively is by considering two new airline affinity credit cards.

For $139, travelers can earn enough miles on US Airways for a trip to Europe, Hawaii, the Caribbean or Mexico.

You can earn these miles by signing up for both a US Airways Visa Signature card, with an annual fee of $90, and a US Airways World MasterCard, which has an annual fee of $49.

The US Airways Visa Signature card offers 25,000 bonus miles after your first purchase.

You can earn 10,000 bonus miles with the US Airways World MasterCard. There's also the airline's Premier World MasterCard ($79 per year), which offers 15,000 bonus miles, plus a $99 domestic companion ticket and a free day pass to an airport club.

If you get both Northwest's and Delta's credit cards, you can earn up to 40,000 miles in bonuses when these airlines merge and combine their frequent-flier programs.

The Delta Gold SkyMiles American Express card offers a bonus of 20,000 miles, plus 2,500 miles for each person you add to the account, and the $95 annual fee is waived the first year.

Northwest is offering bonuses of 10,000 miles for its Visa Platinum card and 15,000 for its Visa Signature card. The annual fee is $55 for the Platinum and $90 for the Signature.

If you're interested in only one card, American has Citi Platinum Select MasterCard. The annual fee also is waived the first year.

Tom Parsons is publisher of Bestfares.com.

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