Are Hilton Credit Cards Good for Travelers? A Review

Hilton Dubai Jumeirah ResidencesBefore leaving for our long-term trip, we opened up two Hilton Citi and two Hilton American Express credit cards in order to have an upgrade in accommodations for several nights during our travels.

We spent several months using the cards to meet the minimum spending limits to get the sign-up bonuses, and even used the Citi affiliated cards as our primary card during the trip to rack up a substantial amount of points.

But does opening four Hilton reward credit cards, two with a $95/year annual fee, really save you money on a long-term trip?

Let's find out.

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KEEN Shoes Review – Are They The Best Shoe for Travel?

Prior to leaving to our 465-day trip around the world, we were really excited to be sent a few pairs of KEEN shoes to wear on our journey.

We were particularly interested in these shoes as they were clearly designed by someone who had our type of journey in mind.

Comfortable for city walking, rugged for mountain hiking, and waterproof just for good measure, they really did seem to be the best shoe for traveling on an adventure such as ours.

But did they live up to the hype?

After 15 months on the road, visiting 38 countries on 5 continents, you could say that we put them through the ultimate test to find the answer.

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A $75,000 Vacation Around the World Over 465 Days

We took a trip around the world for a grand total of 465 days in 2013-2014, visiting 40+ countries on five continents. 

We were neither luxury travelers nor budget backpackers on this trip, and used points to pay for a number of our long-haul flights.

The total cost of this trip? $75,000 – or $80 per person, per day for the duration of the trip.

In this one we dive down into the numbers to show just where all that money went per country and per major spending category.

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…and Then PNC Changed the Foreign ATM Withdrawal Rules

The issues that go along with spending upwards of $75,000 on a vacation is not something most travelers ever have to consider.  But for our 18 month trip around the world, we were faced with some new challenges for this same reason. 

While the argument for how much a journey like this should cost is best served for other articles, one of the biggest struggles long-term travelers have to face are the bank fees that are associated with such a large amount of spending.

After many years of paying comically high fees without any other recourse, banks are finally starting to understand the fact that people do not want to pay foreign transaction fees to access their money. We thought we found a great policy with our bank, PNC, but the honeymoon was soon over just 6 months into our journey as the terms were recently changed back to the archaic fee structure we were trying to get away from. 

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