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Costa Rica: The Details

Well, let’s wrap up these Costa Rica posts, shall we?

I love reliving the trip, but all good things must come to an end!  Besides, the faster I get these posts out, the more I can focus on the next trip – a weekend trip to Austin, Texas in June!

Costa Rica was short and sweet.  It was a bit too short for our liking, but definitely worth it.  When I first booked the flights, I knew the trip was going to be to short to do everything we wanted to do, but that definitely wasn’t going to stop us from going!  Between work, family, friends, and all those other things on my list, it can be hard to find the time to travel.  Now that my girlfriend is a full time high school teacher, and the kiddo is getting older and more involved with school too, I’m trying to take advantage of school vacations.

Unfortunately, everyone else is too, so the price difference between flying home on Wednesday rather than even one day later on Thursday was huge.  We opted to save the Rapid Rewards points for a rainy day, and take the earlier flight home on Wednesday.

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Review: Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard

I recently product changed my Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite card to an AT&T Access More card from Citi (details to come).  The biggest reason I downgraded was the Executive card’s whopping $450 annual fee.  After the first year, I just couldn’t justify paying the high fee.  Originally, the card was compelling simply because of the mileage I could accrue from the sign up bonus.  It’s offered 100,000 AAdvantage miles in the past, but I was only able to snag a 75,000 AAdvantage offer.  Still, after 90 days I was 75,000 miles richer!

Before I get into all the details, a disclaimer:  In my opinion, every card is worth the sign up bonus if you cancel after the first year.  You just need to pick which card works best for you.  Once you have a few, you then need to pick which ones to keep.  There are a lot of factors that go into this – the bonus offer, the long-term benefits, you get the idea.

In an effort to clear up some of the mystery of selecting cards, I’m going to outline my decision and the benefits I was able to use with the AAdvantage Executive.  I’ll break the benefits up into “tangible” and “intangible.”

Tangible:  benefits that I more than likely would have paid for otherwise, or that I will be able to use or well save me money in the future

Intangible:  benefits that I can’t comfortably assign a value to, this is usually because I’d be unwilling to pay upfront for such benefits

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