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award mileage with credit cards

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I hope that I can get advice on this matter.

In the past I bought flight tickets with my award mileage. I even applied to credit cards when I knew that I had a large purchase to make so I can get the 30-40,000 mileage offer. As usual it takes many phone calls to get flights on the dates I want in order to book the flight with the awards.

Now I have a friend that claims that it is much better to get cards such as Capital One that give Travel rewards when one use the funds just to travel with.

I really do not know what is a better choice if one wants to travel and buy low fares. To be honest I cannot figure it out

Thank you all in advance for your suggestions

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