This 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. 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.
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