Orbitz Rewards Dining Guide
How to score major Orbucks while dining out with the Orbitz rewards program
Launched in 2014, the Orbitz Rewards Dining program lets members earn up to 5 percent in Orbucks when they dine at more than 11,000 restaurants across the U.S. As the Rewards Dining site says, it’s your chance to “eat your way to a better vacation.” After all, earning is easy – and free.
What Is Orbitz Rewards Dining?
Orbitz Rewards Dining is a rewards program that’s part of the Rewards Network family. It lets members earn 5 percent back in Orbitz Orbucks for every dollar spent – including tax and tip – when visiting participating restaurants, bars and clubs. Orbucks can be used to book stays at more than 350,000 hotels worldwide.
There are no membership cards to show, coupon codes to enter or deals to preregister for. You just sign up, use a registered card to pay for your meal and earn points.
How do you join Orbitz Rewards Dining?
Joining Orbitz Rewards Dining is free and easy:
- The first step is to create an Orbitz Rewards account. Simply enter your name, email and set up a password.
- Next, set up your Orbitz Rewards Dining account by plugging in your name, zip code and Orbitz account email. Be sure to use the same name and email address that you used to register for the Orbitz Rewards program in step one. Also, don’t forget to check the box that says “Yes, I want to earn 5 percent back in Orbucks for every dollar spent dining.” By checking this box, you’re agreeing to receive weekly emails about the Rewards Dining program from Orbitz, including alerts for restaurants in your area that have joined the program, opportunities to earn bonus rewards on special occasions, reward confirmations and online review reminders.
- Register any credit and debit cards you plan to use at restaurants, bars or clubs. Linking your cards to your account is the only way Orbitz Rewards Dining can track your spending at eligible restaurants and award you Orbucks on your dining purchases.
How to use Orbitz Rewards Dining
With an Orbitz Rewards Dining account created, it’s time to eat and earn. You won’t need a special ID card and won’t have to remember a membership number to earn rewards. But, once you register your credit card, it usually takes about 24 hours to make it official in the Orbitz Rewards Dining system – so wait a day or two before making your first restaurant visit.
You can find participating businesses by searching by zip code, city, state, restaurant, bar or club name. Or, use the advanced search option to filter by proximity or handy options like “Near a Saved Address” or “Near a Landmark.” As long as you pay with your registered card, you can dine in or carry out from any of the participating locations.
It’s important to check ahead of time to make sure a restaurant is offering rewards on the day that you intend to dine there. An easy way to check is to consult the restaurant’s information page on the Rewards Dining site.
Tracking your points
Orbucks should appear in your Orbitz Rewards and Orbitz Rewards Dining accounts as soon as a transaction is registered by the restaurant – usually within 5 to 7 days – but not typically longer than 8 weeks after a transaction occurs. If you’re ever missing Orbucks in your account, you can log into your account center and fill out a missing reward form.
If you’re curious to find out how many Orbucks you’ve earned, simply log into your Orbitz Rewards Dining account and click “Account Center.” Then, locate your name on the right side of the page. Your year-to-date Orbucks earnings will be listed there.
Keeping your points from expiring
Orbucks generally expire 365 days after they are issued, and your membership will expire after 36 consecutive months of no dining activity with a registered card. By regularly dining out with the Orbitz Rewards Dining program, you can prevent your rewards and your membership from expiring, so be sure to dine with the program at least once in a while.
Changing dining rewards programs
If you want to transfer your credit card to another program, simply add the credit card in question to your other Rewards Network dining program, and it will be automatically removed from Orbitz Rewards Dining.
At what rate do you earn Orbucks?
Orbitz Rewards Dining members earn Orbucks at a rate of 5 percent per dollar spent on qualified purchases. You can also use your Orbitz Rewards Visa to earn an additional 2 percent on your dining purchases, resulting in a total 7 percent back in Orbucks.
How to maximize Orbitz Rewards Dining
The site advises that “members who keep more than one credit or debit card registered and up to date in their Orbitz Rewards Dining Account Center tend on average to earn more Orbucks.” This prevents you from using a card that hasn’t been registered with Rewards Dining when dining out and missing out on Orbucks.
Here are a few other tips:
- Make sure to dine at qualifying restaurants. This should be a no-brainer – spending every meal that you can at a qualified restaurant is the key to racking up Orbucks quickly.
- Search for restaurants offering rewards on the day you are dining out. This is trickier to watch for. Luckily the Rewards Dining site lets you filter by “Hide locations not offering Rewards today,” which should solve the problem.
- Always use a card registered to Orbitz Rewards Dining when paying the bill. There’s nothing worse than dining at a qualifying restaurant on a qualifying day … then using the wrong card to pay. Double check that you are using the correct card when the check hits the table.
- Use the Orbitz Rewards Visa Card to pay the bill. We said it once, and we’ll say it again: You can earn an additional 2 percent back by paying with your Orbitz Rewards Visa card, resulting in a total 7 percent back in Orbucks.
- Volunteer to pay the check when dining in a group. Everyone has Venmo these days, which means, you can simplify things by requesting one check for your table and having your friends immediately pay you back while you collect all the rewards.
- Update your cards on file regularly. It’s important to make a regular habit of updating your card information in the Orbitz Rewards Dining account center any time a card issuer sends you a newly numbered credit or debit card. (If the card number remains the same but the expiration date or security code changes, no need to worry about it, as Orbitz Rewards doesn’t ask for this information.)
- Write restaurant reviews. Occasionally a bonus is offered for writing restaurant reviews. You need to complete the review within 30 days of your transaction to receive your bonus Orbucks.
The Orbitz Rewards Dining sign-up bonus
Orbitz regularly offers a sign-up promotion to new members. At the moment, you can earn $5 in bonus Orbucks by spending just $25 at participating restaurants in the first 30 days of membership.
In addition to the sign-up bonus, you will periodically receive bonus offers in your email for meeting various requirements, such as: completing surveys, frequenting more restaurants, spending specific amounts per visit or adding a new card. Orbitz Rewards Dining members should could keep a close eye on their inbox for special offers.
The best credit cards to use with Orbitz Rewards Dining
Since your Orbucks stack with your credit card rewards, it’s a good idea to pay your bill with a card that offers bonus rewards on dining. The best option is the Orbitz Rewards Visa Card. Orbitz Rewards Visa cardholders are automatically enrolled in the program upon card approval.
If the Orbitz Rewards Visa Card is not one you carry in your wallet regularly, try these cards, which offer sizeable rewards on their own when it comes to dining out:
|Credit Card||Rewards for dining||Annual fee|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve||3x points||$450|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred||2x points||$95, $0 first year|
|Uber Visa Card from Barclays||4% cash back||$0|
|Capital One Savor Cash Rewards||4% cash back||$95, $0 first year|
|Citi ThankYou Preferred (Update: This card is no longer available through our site as of Nov. 28, 2018)||2x points||$0|
|Citi ThankYou Premier||2x points||$95, $0 first year|
|Citi Prestige||2x points||$450|
|Discover it chrome||2% cash back (on up to $1,000 combined gas and restaurant spending per quarter, then 1%)||$0|
Another thing to keep in mind is that, because Orbitz Rewards Dining is part of the Reward Network family, you won’t be able to use a card that’s already registered to fellow Rewards Network programs such as Hilton Honors, IHG Rewards Club, American Airlines AAdvantage, Delta SkyMiles and United Mileage Plus, to name a few.
Also, there are two cards out there that flat out do not work with this program: the Diner’s Club card and internationally-issued JBL cards.
Orbitz Rewards Dining restaurants
As mentioned, there are 11,000 participating businesses to earn your Orbucks at across the U.S. (786 restaurant, bar and club options in New York City alone) – and they’re none too shabby. In New York City, for example, you can grab a slice at NYC fixture Famous Famiglia Pizza or Two Boots and earn points by the pie, depending how hungry you are. Other favorites for locals and tourists alike include:
- Brandy Library
- Dallas BBQ
- Junior’s Restaurant
- Gotham Comedy Club
- Charlie Palmer Steak New York
- Buca di Beppo
Visit the Orbitz Rewards Dining website to get a full list of participating restaurants in your area.
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