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Minnebar 2024: Come see Aaron Hurd of Cards and Points live

If you came to my session at the 2024 Minnebar, thank you! Scroll down for links referenced in my talk.

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Minnebar is the largest running tech “un-conference” and it’s held at the Best Buy campus in Minneapolis annually. Minnebar is one of the highlights of my year, since it’s a day when I can reconnect with so many people in the Minneapolis tech community in once place.

Some of my favorite sessions in the past have taught me how to run a profitable AirBnB, how to think about social media as a growth engine, how to present better, and (many years ago) a session got me my first exposure to an electric car.

By the time you read this, Minnebar 2024 will likely over, but here’s a link to the sessions posted this year: Minnebar 2024 sessions. If you want to hear about future Minnebars, sign up with Minnestar for updates.

Links to things I talked about in my presentation.

Here are links to things I referenced in my presentation. While the whole talk will be available online in the coming months, these links can give you more information now on the rewards programs and credit cards I referenced during my talk.

Secured cards and 0% balance transfer cards.

If you’re still working on building your credit, you’ll likely find it difficult to get approved for a travel rewards credit card. Unfortunately, most secured credit cards are high-fee products that feel designed to extract fees, rather than help people build credit. Here’s a link to my list of good secured cards with $0 annual fees. All of these cards are genuinely good products that offer a path to upgrade to a $0 annual fee unsecured credit card.

If you’re currently paying interest on a credit card, you’re never going to get enough value from travel rewards to offset the interest charges you’re paying. A 0% balance transfer offer can help you cut interest charges while you pay down your cards. Hopefully we talked after the session. Unfortunately, I don’t have a list of good 0% balance transfer offers up on my site yet, but I hope to soon.

Transferable point programs

Here’s a list of the major transferable point programs and links to the guides I’ve written on this site.

Chase Ultimate Rewards® resources

Check out our guide to Chase Ultimate Rewards® and our list of the best Chase Ultimate Rewards welcome bonuses to research Ultimate Rewards cards.

Transfer partners I like

Here are the transfer partners that I like that I referenced in the presentation:

  • Air Canada Aeroplan: Star alliance awards, easy search, flexible cancellation policies.
  • Avianca LifeMiles: Star alliance awards. Good pricing for United short-haul domestic flights.
  • Avios (British Airways/Iberia/Emirates): Good short-haul pricing.
  • American Airlines AAdvantage: Decent pricing on coach American flights within the U.S.
  • Flying Blue: Easy to use awards to Europe, good business class pricing, excellent coach pricing, promo awards.
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club: (Very) occasional good pricing on Delta transatlantic. Air New Zealand to Auckland.
  • Delta SkyMiles, United MileagePlus, Southwest Rapid Rewards: Use almost exclusively for speculative tickets because of free cancellations.
  • Hyatt: Decent value for hotel redemptions.

Buying benefits

In this section, I covered credit cards that offer a free annual hotel night, cards offering a companion pass (mostly the Delta credit cards) and cards offering airport lounge access.

Additional cards I like

Here are the cards I featured at the end of my presentation:

About the author

  • Aaron Hurd

    Aaron Hurd is a credit card, travel rewards, and loyalty program expert. Over the past 15 years, he has authored over a thousand expert contributions published by leading outlets including WSJ, TIME, Newsweek, Forbes, NerdWallet, The Points Guy, Bankrate, CNET, and many others. He has also served in consulting roles for many of these same outlets, designing content strategy, hiring teams of teams of editors and contributors, developing thought-leadership pieces, and ghost-editing for senior editors. Aaron is well-known in the miles and points community and regularly presents about travel rewards at conferences like the Chicago Seminars and Minnebar. Aaron has enjoyed the game of optimizing credit card rewards since getting his first credit card shortly after he turned 18. He started learning about credit cards and travel rewards from the (now defunct) FatWallet Finance forums and FlyerTalk. He holds more than 40 open credit cards and has first-hand experience with almost every major credit card product.

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