Points, Miles and a Prayer

Doing this trip would absolutely not have been feasible without some very creative usage of my points, miles and some useful websites.

Playing the credit card game:

I took a trip in 2012 with some points that I received for opening a new american airlines card. The 40,000 point offer was enough for a roundtrip flight to Madrid. This was one of the best trips of all time for me as it lead me to the discover of a very long and intense story of my grandfather, Arthur Meyerowitz (who I never had the privilege of meeting). Here is that story www.MorhangeNetwork.com.

So, back to 2013. I have been working on opening cards for the past 6 months or so and making sure to do pretty much all my spending on my credit cards and paying my balances monthly.  NOTE: it is important to pay your balances every month. Otherwise, the interest rates will end up eating into the true value of your rewards. If you think you WILL need to carry a balance, it is advisable to find a 0% (or very low) interest card that you can transfer balances to. Remember, you may incur a fee to do the transfer but it should be less then your interest rates.

Resources and Tools:

I started using AwardWallet.com recently to help me keep track of all my points and miles and the different programs that I am a part of. Before I booked this trip I had almost 300,000 points/miles being tracked in my account. Now I am down to 150,000 ish but I am sure I can start building those up again.

To begin the learning process of all this I spoke to a couple of friends and found some good websites to use to0. ThePointsGuy.com / FlyerTalk.com / MillionMileSecrets.com / TheFlightDeal.com are all GREAT resources for getting your feet wet with this stuff. They each offer different information on varying topics and for more details just check them out. Here’s a great intro from MillionMileSecrets

I’ll explain in my next post some of the best cards/programs to join.

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