How I am Flying to Burning Man for just $10

Burning ManThis is another of my How I am series of articles where I give you the nuts and bolts of awards redemptions that I am making and show you how to do the same!

I have talked about attending Burning Man in the past and it has become one of of my favorite events each year.  I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to pull all the pieces together this year, but luckily I had made a speculative booking back in June when Southwest was having a sale for a decent deal.FLL-RNO For just 19,534 Southwest points and $10 I was able to book my flights from Fort Lauderdale to Reno (which is the closest major airport to the event)!  Southwest is a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards so I was able to use part of the 40,000 point sign on bonus I received by getting the Chase Sapphire Preferred card for these flights.  The great thing about using Southwest points for domestic coach flights is that you can cancel or change the flights any time up to 15 minutes before your flight leaves and get all of the points back without any fees charged. My plan was to keep these flights unless a better sale came along on Southwest where I could rebook and get the points savings.  For domestic short flights I don’t mind coach too much and the two free bags that Southwest provides certainly takes away some of the worry of getting stuck with a big bag fee.

Pro-Tip:  I actually booked the above trip in two separate one way reservations since the price in points was the same.  This gave me the additional flexibility to change either flight without effecting the other.  This comes in handy when one of the dates goes on sale but the other has gone up in price.  If you had it all under one reservation you would have to cancel both flights and might miss out on the savings opportunity.

As always, reply with any questions and follow me on Google+FacebookTwitter and Instagram to make sure you don’t miss any great info!  And don’t forget to share this article with anyone who might be interested using the handy social share buttons right below this post!

Make an easy 1000 AA Miles by Shopping Online

This is another of our No Credit, No Problem series of articles which you can take advantage of with no special credit or debit card.

If you aren’t familiar with online shopping portals and how they work then stop everything and check out our article on How to use Shopping Portals to make Mega Miles. We have literally made hundreds of thousands of miles with them in the past, so if you don’t know, you are missing out!

From August 17-25, 2014, American Airlines Shopping Mall is having a promotion where if you spend $200 at any of the 1000+ stores listed on their site, then they will give you a bonus 1000 AA miles on top of whatever you get from the merchant (typically 1-25 miles per dollar).aadvantageshopping1K

Continue reading

The Discover It Chrome edition.

I have been recommending the Discover It® card for a while now because it is a great card to start out with to build your credit. Just last week I showed you how I made $62 in cashback with mine!  Not to mention that it saved my life when I was in China in April!   But on my Top Credit Cards page, I also have the Discover It® for Students and the Discover It® chrome card. Continue reading

Shanghai: The Pearl of the Orient

This is part 16 of a series on my trip to Austria, Germany and China.

I received 40,000 of the 100,000 miles I used for this award ticket by getting the US Airways® Premier World MasterCard®!  This is a great card and one I still carry.  These miles will eventually become American miles which are some of the most valuable.  Click here to apply now for one of your own!

When I planned this trip, seeing Shanghai was definitely one of my highlights.  Living in Miami the last 8 years has made me love port cities.  There is just something about the water next to the skyline that is incredible.IMG_8660 Continue reading

Chase United Explorer 50K Mile offer!

United Explorer 50KThe Chase United Explorer Visa has been on our Top Credit Cards page for a long time and while there were targeted sign up bonuses for some accounts, the standard sign up bonus was 30,000 miles.  They have updated their page to reflect that anyone can now get the 50,000 Mile offer after spending $2000 in the first 3 months of having the card.  The annual fee is waived for the first year and then $95 afterwards. Continue reading

10 Amazing Island Hotels. Number 3 is incredible!

Feel like getting away?  Really far away?

We have scoured the world for 10 of the most amazing island hotels!  And even better all of these you can book using points so your stay could be free.  Don’t have points yet?  Why not start with our Getting Started page?  These 10 hotels should be all the motivation you need!

10. The St. Regis Mauritius Resort - 20-25K Starpoints/night depending on season.

St Regis Mauritus 2St Regis Mauritus Continue reading

Is this the coolest hotel I have stayed at?

This is part 15 of a series on my trip to Austria, Germany and China.

I received 40,000 of the 100,000 miles I used for this award ticket by getting the US Airways® Premier World MasterCard®!  This is a great card and one I still carry.  These miles will eventually become American miles which are some of the most valuable.  Click here to apply now for one of your own!

Hangzhou (pronounced Hong-Joe which I didn’t figure out til after my video) was my next stop which is an affluent city one hours by high speed rail to the Southwest of Shanghai.  As the high speed train pulled into Hangzhou, I was excited to get to my hotel, the Intercontinental Hangzhou.  I had 3 nights at this hotel at a pointbreaks rate of only 5000 points a night which meant my stay would be completely free! Walking up to it, I was instantly struck by the design which is roughly a sphere.

IMG_8572Going inside, it only became more beautiful. Continue reading