Monthly Archives

November 2016

Blog

How I Did It: A $1,300 Trip to Oregon for $22.50

By: Dillon Carter

Hey guys!

I recently got back from a four-day trip to Oregon with my girlfriend. From hot springs to waterfalls to snow capped mountains, it was was an amazing adventure.

I had been sitting on some points for a while and finally had a short break from class, so we quickly decided to book a trip. The whole booking process took less than an hour.

Dillon's Trip

As everyone knows, trying to make time to travel can be particularly frustrating, so we booked this three months in advance. As a budding entrepreneur, this gave me enough lead time to ensure I had everything in place so I could relax on my vacation.

For those who don’t think you can take the time away from work, I’m here to tell you that it is possible. With a little planning, you can not only take a great vacation, but enjoy it too! Continue Reading

Blog

The Marriott-Starwood Merger and What It Means For You

By: Spencer Howard

If you have been following the merger between Marriott and Starwood, you know many points’ enthusiasts have been having panic attacks over what this will mean for their SPG points.

Well, the merger was finally completed and… everything is okay. In fact, the merger has been handled quite well for those with loyalty to either program.

Let’s check out the opportunities the merger has presented us.

Marriott-StarwoodMerger

Linking Your Accounts

To get started, you will want to link your Starwood (SPG) and Marriott (or Ritz-Carlton*) accounts. Marriott has set up a site to make this a simple process. Just have your log-in info on hand for the two programs you are linking.

*Marriott and Ritz-Carlton are part of the same program already. The difference between them is mostly in the promotions they market to you. You can only have one or the other, but the points you earn work with both.

Transfer Points Between Programs

One of the great aspects of this merger is that points may now be transferred between programs, and at a fair rate of three SPG points per Marriott Rewards point. This provides some intriguing options for hotel stays in both programs, and possibly some interesting flight options. If you’ve been wanting to try a Marriott or Starwood property, but haven’t had the appropriate points, this could be your chance. Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story – A Couple’s Trip to Europe for Next to Nothing

By: Bryce Conway

Hey Travel Junkies,

We love when we get the opportunity to tell you about our amazing readers.

But, you know what we love more than that? Hearing how our awesome readers took action after reading our how-to posts to take trips that most people could only dream of taking!

A reader recently emailed me about a trip he took with his wife by using our strategies to Europe. I was blown away by his success. Instead of giving you a quick recap of his trip, I thought you’d enjoy hearing directly from him.

With that… I give you, Tomas.

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Last month, my wife, Aileen, and I had the opportunity to travel to Europe for 18 days. We visited London, Paris, Venice, Rome, Madrid, Lisbon, and Barcelona.

Let me just start by saying that we have been dreaming of this trip for a while, but it seemed like it was going to be a long time before we could save up for it.

I’m a structural engineer and my wife is currently a student. Even though our income allows us to travel about once a year, it seemed like this kind of dream vacation would require us to drop some serious cash.

That changed in September of last year when I stumbled across 10xTravel ad online. I read about how Bryce was able to use points and miles to take his wife all over the world. Then and there, I decided to try it myself.

Long story short, following Bryce and the rest of the 10xTravel team’s advice, I was able to book round-trip flights, all the hotels, and all the inter-city flights and trains for approximately $600 out of pocket.

Here’s how I did it:

 

Flights

My wife and I each signed up for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum select card, as we wanted to fly on American Airlines. She received 60,000 miles and I received 50,000 miles from the sign-up bonuses (we signed up at different times using different offers). Those were then combined with a few thousand miles we already had from flying and a few thousand more from regular use of the cards. All told, we ended up with about 120,000 AA miles.

We used all 120,000 miles (60,000 per round-trip ticket) to book two tickets from Boston to London, which were going for $1,480 per person at that time. That would have cost us $2,960 Our two tickets from Barcelona to Boston would have cost $430.70 per person and $861.40 total. Instead, we only spent $129.32.

See below:

TomasSuccessStory1 Continue Reading

Blog

The Ultimate Guide to the Southwest Companion Pass

By: Bryce Conway

Hi Travel Junkies,

It’s that time of the year again!

Time to make holiday travel plans, get going your Christmas shopping, and start thinking about earning the coveted Southwest Companion Pass.

The Southwest Companion Pass is arguably the best airline perk in the business and an absolute must for anyone who frequently travels with friends and family.

My wife and I each have the Companion Pass (we love to take friends with us when we travel) and we have used it to travel to Vegas (six times), Disney World, Austin, New Orleans, Chicago, LA, San Francisco, NYC, and many other destinations in the last 12 months alone.

Unlike my Companion, this money suit did not make it home from Vegas

Unlike my Companion, this money suit did not make it home from Vegas

Today we are going to talk about how you can do the same by earning the Southwest Companion Pass for almost 2 full years.

But before we do that, let’s take a quick look at Southwest Companion Pass works.

 

What is the Southwest Companion Pass?

The Southwest Companion Pass allows you to bring a companion on any Southwest flight that you fly on for free.   Continue Reading