The Arrival Plus from Barclaycard is a travel rewards card with an $89 annual fee (waived the first year), 2 points/$ on all purchases, but most important has Chip + PIN functionality (for use outside the USA).
I signed up for this card with a waived first year annual fee and 40,000 points after spending $3,000. While I have not used the Chip + PIN functionality of this card yet, I have utilized the travel rewards and intended to let my parents use the card during their trip to Europe last month.
Free Dinner in Hawaii
Leading up to my trip to Hawaii in June I knew a few things I wanted to do: I wanted to snorkel in Hanauma Bay, to rent a bike so I could train for the Santa Cruz Tri and get around, and to attend a luau. Through my searches I found the Go City Card.
The Go Oahu Card allows for travelers to either select their own attractions and rentals (like individual ships at the Pearl Harbor museum or the Pearl Harbor-City Tour) or buy an all-in-one pass. The 3-, 5-, and 7-day all inclusive passes offer 1 premium attraction, so I picked the Alii Luau & Dinner show to go along with the Polynesian Culture Center entry because I purchased a 3-day all-inclusive pass.
Using the points earned from the 40,000 point sign-up bonus for the Arrival Plus card I paid off the $185 3-day pass. The Alii Luau & Dinner show alone was $113 making it easy to recoup the full price of the all-inclusive pass with visiting only a few more attractions. I stayed on Oahu for 5 days and the 3-day all-inclusive pass was perfect for my needs as a solo traveler.
Saving for a Triathlon
I raced in the Santa Cruz Tri and book a stay at the Ocean Pacific Lodge (review soon to come) for ~$300. This was a perfect price because after my sign-up bonus and spending then redeeming points on my Hawaii trip I had just enough points for a 1 night stay. It was not until I visited Santa Cruz a few weeks before the race that I was able to see that the hotel was not only a block away from the beach start but it was also directly across the street from the transition area. The proximity of the hotel to the start and transition area were easily enough to make this hotel and points redemption a great value.
Putting the Chip and PIN to Use in Europe
My intentions were to give my parents Authorized User cards for my Arrival Plus for when they needed Chip + PIN (not Chip + Signature) functionality on their Europe trip, but the cards did not arrive in time. I guess I will have to try this card at Target to see if the Chip + PIN is triggered.fd