Category

Dining Programs

Mileage Dining Programs

As I hinted yesterday at the end of my post, you can earn miles for dining at certain restaurants.

Unfortunately, it looks like The Points Guy beat me to the punch and compiled an entire list of all the different Airline & Hotel Dining Programs, along with bonuses. So I’m going to defer to him on that because it looks like it is a fairly exhaustive list, however these are the Programs that you can earn miles in for dining.

Participating Programs:

  • American Airlines
  • Alaska Airlines
  • Delta
  • Southwest
  • United Airlines
  • US Airways
  • Priority Club
  • Hilton HHonors

Observations From Participating In Numerous Dining Programs Over The Years:

  • No Coupons Involved – One of the nice things about these Dining Programs is that whoever you dine with doesn’t have to know you are earning miles on your meal because there are no coupons or anything like that involved. You just register your credit card online, and then pay with that same Credit Card in the restaurant, and your miles will post! This means you can secretly earn miles on dates, client meetings, corporate credit cards, or even dining with friends (especially if you pay the entire bill with your Credit Card and your friends give you cash!).
  • You Can Stack Other Promotions On It – As I pointed out in my last post, because the miles are issued automatically after you make a purchase with your Credit Card, you can use Restaurant.com certificates or even Groupons, and still earn miles on whatever your final balance is! Also if you pay with a Credit Card that earns 2x miles on dining like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, you can still earn those miles too. So depending on which restaurant you go to, you could earn 3x miles from the Dining Program and then 2x from your Credit Card, for a total of 5 miles per $1 spent. The best part is that even the waiter doesn’t know that you are earning miles on your meal!
  • You Can’t Double Dip – When I first signed up for United Mileage Plus dining, I saw AA had an identical program, so I thought if I registered the same Credit Card with both sites, that I could earn miles in both account. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that and if you use the same Credit Card in AA’s program, then it will remove your Credit Card from the United’s program. You can however use 2 separate credit cards in each of their programs!
  • It Is A Great Way To Keep Miles From Expiring – Even though it isn’t always a lot, earning 100 miles for dining could help you keep miles from expiring especially for the obscure programs that you don’t credit very often.

TIPS:

  • SIGN UP NOW! – Not only do you get a 1,000 mile bonus for signing up but once you sign up, you can even forget about the program and still earn miles! I never check to see what restaurants are participating in the dining programs, but just yesterday I got an email saying I earned miles for picking up carry-out last Friday at a restaurant that apparently was participating.
  • Register All Your Cards – Unless you only use 1 card, I’d recommend just signing up all your cards in one program. In the event you decide to earn miles in a different Airline’s program, the system will automatically remove the card from your original program. By registering all cards, you don’t have to remember which card you originally signed up with, as all of your cards will earn you miles.
  • Write Down Your Log-In Information – All of the programs have different log-in requirements and password requirements, and they don’t specify what they are when you try and log-in. For United’s, you use your MileagePlus number but other programs you have a separate User Name. To save yourself a lot of time, write down your log-in and password.

Feel free to share any of your tips or observations!

-Parag