Educational Posts on Loyalty Programs

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Blueprint for a First Class Ticket to an Exotic Island

Blueprint for a First Class Ticket to an Exotic Island

If your imagination were the only limit, where would you go?

A secluded island getaway with private access to a crystal clear lagoon from your glass-bottom villa floating over the warm tropical water?

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When Should You Book Reward Tickets?

Booking Frequent Flyer Award Tickets  online

I want to tell you a little secret about the airline industry.

About booking flights in particular.

Shhhh…come closer.

The best time to book flights is not when the inventory first loads!

I know, it’s so counterintuitive you don’t believe me.

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Tips for Managing Rewards Credit Cards

A Pile ofRewards Credit Cards

It’s no secret that credit card sign-up bonuses are the fastest and easiest ways to earn miles and points. However, opening up a dozen credit card accounts is fraught with problems if you’re not organized. Playing the points and miles game is only a good idea if you have excellent credit (730 or higher), you pay off your credit card balances monthly, never miss a payment and are organized enough to keep track of annual card renewal dates.

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How does the American Airlines and US Airways Merger Affect Frequent Flyers?

Get bonus miles using frequent flyer programs

Ever since American Airlines has come out of bankruptcy, they can’t stop talking about the new American. New planes! New amenities! And now: a host of new routes, hubs, and aircraft courtesy of the American Airlines-US Airways merger.

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Miles to Give

Donation

This is the ideal time of year to donate to your favorite charities. The holidays are upon us and it’s natural to give thanks for all we have and to want to help those who are less fortunate. Many nonprofits could really use an infusion of goodwill as the year comes to an end.

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Holiday Shopping: Best Bets for Giving Miles and Points

Holiday Shopping: Best Bets for Giving Miles and Points

With Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday behind us, you just can’t hide. It’s time to do your holiday shopping. For miles and points hounds, picking up stocking stuffers and more expensive gifts offers a lucrative opportunity to earn rewards.

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Save on Fees this Holiday Season with Award Tickets

Save on Fees this Holiday Season with Award Tickets

When I worked in a university, it was always a game of chance making holiday travel plans. Our office almost always closed the week between Christmas and New Year’s, but you never knew for sure until less than a month before, too close to book reward tickets without a fee. I traditionally ended up on a short holiday trip followed by a staycation during the office closure.

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Fly the Most Miles For Your Reward Miles

Fly the Most Miles For Your Reward Miles

Unfortunately for reward travelers in America, the days of zones when you could hop to nearby states on a couple thousands airline points are over.

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Can You Hack Travel Hacking? How to Know if it’s for You

Can You Hack Travel Hacking? How to Know if it's for You

What would you do with 12,520 pudding cups?

After finding out Healthy Choice was offering 100 frequent flyer points for every product barcode sent in, the father of travel hacking, David Phillips, figured out what was the lowest-priced bar-coded item he could buy (pudding cups for $0.25) and bought out every store in his state.

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Earn Bonus Miles on Hotels and Car Rentals

Book a hotel and get bonus miles

There are dozens of ways to earn frequent flyer miles and hotel loyalty points. Setting out on an actual trip is the most conventional way to earn miles and points. You earn frequent flyer miles for taking a flight, but you can also actually earn bonus miles for car rentals and hotel stays as well.

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Earn Miles and Points with Bluebird by American Express

Earn Miles and Points with Bluebird by American Express

Even if you’re new to earning miles and points, you’ve probably heard people talk about Bluebird as a way to boost earnings potential. It solves a major problem: how to accrue miles and points when paying bills with merchants like your landlord or mortgage company that don’t take credit cards.

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Dining for Miles

Dine out and get bonus miles

How about earning miles for your morning coffee and bagel or dinner out with friends? Enroll in the dining rewards program for your favorite airline and get up to 5 miles per dollar spent.

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Earn Miles and Points with Amazon Payments

Earn Miles and Points with Amazon Payments

Isn’t it frustrating when you’ve got a monthly expense or a personal debt to pay and there’s no way to do it other than personal check? You won’t earn miles or points on those transactions and they can add up to a huge loss of rewards over time. What if there was a way to pay the maid, babysitter, or even your landlord and earn miles and points?

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Stopover Anyone? Here’s What You Can and Can’t Do

Stopover Anyone? Here's What You Can and Can't Do

American Airlines does not allow stopovers on domestic award tickets, but does permit them for international travel. I live on the west coast and often use the rule to my advantage to squeeze in a stopover on the way to a foreign destination or to book one leg of a bonus trip on the way back from overseas travel.

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Jump-start Your Free Travel Hobby

I’ve traveled extensively since 2006 when I first discovered the power of frequent flyer miles and hotel loyalty program points. I’ve become the envy of my friends and colleagues who continually ask about the exotic destinations I visit on a regular basis. They are also always intrigued when they hear that it only costs me a few dollars to make these trips and they want to know how they can replicate my success.

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What’s the Best Airline Miles Program for You?

How do you which airline frequent flyer program you should join? It’s easy to be swayed by an attractive credit card offer. And stocking up on airline miles is an amazing way to fly near and far.  But only if you can find available flights.

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Booking Frequent Flyer Award Tickets by Phone

Booking Frequent Flyer Award Tickets  online

Congratulations! You’ve earned enough frequent flyer miles to book a free trip to a dream destination. If you’re lucky, your program offers online booking. More often than not though, you’ll have to actually pick up the phone to make your award reservation.

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Beyond the One Penny Mile: Fees and Taxes on Award Tickets

Determining whether an award ticket was worth your miles used to be a simple equation.
For most airline award redemptions, miles are valued at approximately one cent per mile. You multiply the required miles by $0.01 and then compare it to the price of the flight you’re considering.

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The Power of Shopping Portals to Maximize Miles

The Power of Shopping Portals to Maximize Miles

Some people think that if they don’t fly or stay at a hotel often enough, they have no chance of earning enough miles or points for free travel. That’s simply not true. These days, loyalty programs are a business in and of themselves and offer a  myriad of ways to rack up miles from co-branded credit cards to online shopping malls. All you need to do is purchase items you were going to buy anyway through these portals to get bonus points.

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Rio Rising: Use Rewards To See the 2014 FIFA World Cup

Rio Rising: Use RewarSee the 2014 FIFA World Cup

First the Olympics said they were headed there. Then FIFA announced it would be the host of the 2014 World Cup. In its annual guide to the top destinations, the New York Times gave Rio the number one spot because “the whole world will be there in 2014.”

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