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Reader Success Story: Alana Books A $5,000 Spanish Vacation for $106.12

Guest Post By: Alana

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I decided my husband and I were going to need a vacation after he spent a year in a very intense program earning two master’s degrees. I also had heard about using miles and points to travel through others around my community, specifically two close friends who saved a TON of money on a trip to Italy.

I figured if we were going to pay so much for tuition, it should at least help us take an extravagant vacation in the end!

We chose Barcelona, Spain for our eight-day adventure and it was amazing!

Points covered our flights, hotels, transportation from the airport and six tours throughout the city.

Here is how we did it on points:

Alana - 10xTravel Success Story

Flights to Barcelona

My husband opened the United Mileage Plus Card and the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and we used them to pay off his tuition.

We then transferred all of our bills over to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and before we knew it – in less than three months – we had easily reached the minimum spend and then some on both cards.

We saw that two round-trip economy flights to Barcelona for 120,000 United miles were available when were ready to book. We had exactly 120,000 miles and points. We transferred our Chase Ultimate Rewards points to United and booked our flights. We only had to cover the $106.12 in taxes and fees. Continue Reading

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Reader Success Story: A Dream $5500+ Italian Vacation for Two for $224

Guest Post By: Alex B.

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Editor’s Note: The sign-up bonuses mentioned in this Reader Success Story might not be current. Please see current offers for details.

Background

Since I was 10, I’ve dreamed of going to Italy. I loved reading about Roman history – the legions, Caesar, Roman gods and goddesses. The history of the country entranced me, and it has always held the #1 spot on my travel bucket list.

I never thought I’d have the money to go anytime soon – until I discovered 10x Travel.

I was raised to think that credit cards were bad, and only irresponsible people used them. My parents struggled with credit card debt in their 20’s, and didn’t want their children to go through the same thing.

10xTravel’s material showed me that, used responsibly and intelligently, credit cards can make your travel dreams a reality.

10xTravel - Reader Success Story Alex B

The Strategy

I told my girlfriend (now my fiance!) about my plan in April 2016, right when I discovered 10xTravel. She didn’t exactly understand right away, but loved the thought of an Italian vacation. She was on board and played a key role in planning the trip.

Here are the cards I used to take our dream Italian vacation:

I opened the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card with a sign-up bonus of 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points + 5,000 points for authorized user.

I was approved for the Chase Sapphire Preferred in June. My fiance paid her entire year of health insurance on the card, and we put all of our spending on the card. We hit the minimum spend within a month, which led to our next card. Continue Reading

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Reader Success Story: A $7,700 Honeymoon For $66

Tommy V

By: Tommy N

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Without a doubt, last year was one of the best of my life. I married my best friend, Emma, and we celebrated this new chapter with an amazing honeymoon.

Financially speaking, we weren’t really in a position to plan a luxurious and expensive honeymoon. In the span of 6 months, we had planned a wedding, moved across the country, quit one of our jobs and relocated the other. Never mind the fact that we were trying to manage our student loans and a car loan. We were in debt with half the income and double the rent.

However, I really wanted Emma to have an amazing honeymoon. She’s an adventurer at heart and is truly at her happiest when she is traveling. For that reason, we were determined to deliver on the perfect vacation in spite of the obvious financial constraints.

Considering our love for both hiking and sipping cocktails on the beach, we soon set our sights on Hawaii. I then stumbled across 10xTravel and read everything I could. As I would soon learn, with some planning and discipline, there is no reason for anyone to not have the honeymoon of their dreams.

Side note: Wedding and Honeymoon planning is the perfect time to start this hobby. All the spending required will cut through minimum spending requirements on credit cards like a knife through hot butter to help you earn tons of miles and points.

Without further ado, here’s how we booked an amazing honeymoon adventure to Hawaii on miles and points.

Disclaimer: To find the cash value of each hotel and flight, I used proxy reservations, inclusive of any upgrades we received. Therefore the value is based on the same flight or hotel, on the same days of the week, during comparable times of the year for travel. These values are just a barometer; your experience may vary.

 

Flights: Boston -> Kaua’i; Honolulu -> Boston; Delta Air Lines 

  • Points Used: 60,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points transferred to Flying Blue for flights on partner airline, Delta
  • Source of Points: Chase Sapphire Preferred sign-up bonus (50k) + 1 referral (5k) + add authorized user (5k)
  • Cost Out of Pocket: $22.40 (taxes and fees)
  • Cost Without Points: $2,100.00
  • Redemption Value: 3.5 cents per point

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Reader Success Story: $15,000 European Honeymoon for Almost Nothing!

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

If you’ve ever wanted to see how you can put together an amazing honeymoon to Europe, this is the success story for you. Brett is going to tell you all about how took this amazing trip with his wife.

If you’d like to share your story with the 10xTravel readers, drop us an email and share how you did it! (bryce [at] 10xTravel [dot] com)


Planning a honeymoon was the last thing my fiancé wanted to worry about. The wedding took precedent for her and so the task was passed to me.

Luckily I had been following 10xTravel for a few years and already had a simple plan. Acquire as many points as possible to make our honeymoon as long as possible.

So, where did I begin you might ask?

It all started about two years ago while dating my now fiancé. I knew even back then that she was the one I was going to marry, and knew I wanted to surprise her with the honeymoon of a lifetime.

After using other miles and points for beach getaways, cruises, and family gatherings, these are the points we used to book this trip:

Chase Ultimate Rewards: 250,000

Capital One points: 120,000

Marriott Rewards: 240,000

We earned the Ultimate Rewards points through our Chase Sapphire Preferred cards as well as a Chase Sapphire Reserve card. The Capitol One points were earned through each of our Capitol One Venture cards.

We were fortunate to earn the Marriott Rewards points through my fiancé’s work travel. However, we could have easily earned the points through the Chase Marriott cards.

Now that we had the needed points, we had to decide where to go!

We immediately agreed that Italy and Greece were perfect for our honeymoon and that we’d spend two and a half weeks enjoying ourselves.

Here’s how we booked our trip:

Genoa, Italy Port

Flight to Genoa, Italy

To start, we wanted to go to Cinque Terre as we had heard wonderful things, so I transferred 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points to United and booked our flights to the closest airport. We used our Capital One to cover the taxes and fees.

 

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Reader Success Story: A $6,000 Vacation Of A Lifetime For $230

By: Eric August

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Hey, 10xTravel readers!

My name is Eric August. I’ve been in the miles and points game for a little over a year now, and with the help of Bryce and the 10xTravel team (and other readers) my friend Joe and I were able to take a two-week vacation to Australia and New Zealand in November.

I’ll show you how we did it, how much we spent, and how much we would’ve spent, so I hope you enjoy!

Since 2013, Joe and I have taken a trip together just about every year. We began with Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, then Toronto, Canada in 2015, and so when it came time for 2016’s trip, we discovered a crucial difference in our planning: points!

 

Next Stop, Los Angeles

We began our journey at Midway Airport in Chicago. Using my Southwest Companion Pass (and redeeming 17,399 Southwest Rapid Rewards points), we flew from Chicago to Los Angeles for a fun weekend in L.A. before our flight to New Zealand.

Joe rented a Mustang Convertible (utilizing Emerald Status from National), and our luck instantly took a turn for the worse as our rental car was broken into and my passport was stolen.

They didn’t steal my Gameboy color with Pokémon so it wasn’t a total loss.

Not to be deterred, we still enjoyed our weekend in L.A. meeting with friends, somehow getting into secret clubs, and making the most of our vacation (although I could’ve used some Xanax).

Luckily, I applied and was able to receive a new passport on Monday before we left. Continue Reading

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Reader Success Story: A $50,000 European Adventure for Under $3,000

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

Today, we’re going to hear from Lalaine Mackey about an amazing European adventure she and her husband, Russ, had last year.

If you’d like to share your story with the 10xTravel readers, drop us an email and share how you did it! (bryce [at] 10xTravel [dot] com)

 

A September to Remember

It all started when we got a bill from the IRS – we needed to pay more on our income tax in the prior year (UGH!). My husband said, “Wouldn’t it be nice to get a free trip out of this payment?”

So, he decided to research everything he could find about travel with frequent flyer miles and found 10xTravel. Then he found the 10xTravel Facebook group. That’s where the fun really began!

In October 2015, his initial goal was to earn enough points for a week in Hawaii! By January 2016, he had already earned enough for this trip! Take note insiders – this is how you convince your skeptical significant other to join in the fun!!!

He introduced me to the world of miles and points when he had enough points for a week stay in Hawaii for pennies on the dollar!

Who wouldn’t want to be here?!

 

Let’s Go To Europe!

I was convinced and raised the stakes for our next vacation – I asked about Europe! I jumped into miles and points by applying for the same cards as my husband. By March 2016, we had enough points and miles to get round-trip tickets to Europe and some hotel stays on points. By June, we had enough for business class! Continue Reading

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Reader Success Story – A $2,412 Trip to Bali for Only $255

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support.

We’re back with another amazing readers success story. Today Shannon is going to tell us how she used miles and points to take a dream vacation in Bali, Indonesia. If you’ve been wondering how you can use make credit cards work for you, this is a must-read.

If you have your own dream vacation story that you’d like to share, send Bryce a quick email and you could see your story on the blog next time!

With that we’ll turn it over to Shannon!

 

Hey 10xTravel Friends!

If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably looked at your points balances and thought, “ugh, there’s no way I’m going to have enough for a round-trip!” Fortunately, that doesn’t have to derail your dream vacation.

I knew I didn’t have enough miles in any of my accounts to for a round-trip flight from Minneapolis to Bali, Indonesia, so I decided I would book one-way flights on two different airline programs. I did a little research and decided to use United miles for my flight to Bali and Delta SkyMiles for my return flight.

I booked my flight to Bali on United with thanks to the sign-up bonus I received from the Chase United card. At the time, the bonus was 50,000. A one-way flight from Minneapolis to Bali only cost 40,000 miles and $52 (taxes and fees), so my 50,000 United miles were more than enough to take care of this flight.

I used my CapitalOne Venture card to pay for the fees and was able to erase all $52 of these taxes and fees. A free flight to Bali? Yes, please!

Continue Reading

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Reader Success Story – A $10,000 European Honeymoon for Next to Nothing

We talk a lot about how you can take amazing trips around the world with the help of miles and points. I’m sure some of you have wondered why we’re so obsessed with credit cards and using the points we earn to travel. Well, let me introduce you to Vincent.

Vincent has planned an amazing European honeymoon with his wife for later this year. I’ll let Vincent show you how he did it…

——–

Making honeymoon decisions can be particularly stressful, but thanks to miles and points we are going on a seven-day adventure that will take us to Athens and Crete. Not only will we spend time in two amazing cities, but we will be staying at 4 and 5 star hotels.

You might be thinking, “that’s great, but I don’t have that kind of money.” Well, neither do we! Thanks to the strategic use of credit cards, we have planned the trip of a lifetime and saved a TON of money.

The card that is the driving force behind our honeymoon is the Chase Sapphire Reserve. We wanted to show you what a couple lovebirds can do with this amazing card.

So, let’s get into it!

 

The Journey Begins: Dayton to Athens

We are flying from Dayton to Athens, Greece thanks to 30K United points and $25 in taxes and fees per person. That’s 60,000 total United miles and $50 dollars for the two of us. All it took was a quick transfer of Chase Ultimate Rewards to United to make it happen.

To make this journey just that little bit better, we also have Priority Pass lounge access thanks to the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Nothing beats cocktails and Wi-Fi in the lounge while waiting for your flight!

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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.

—————————-

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

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Reader Success Story: A Trip to Bucharest for Next to Nothing

Hi Travel Junkies,

Today I want to introduce you to longtime 10xT reader Jarrod, who is a Captain in the United States Marine Corps based out of greater Washington, DC. Jarrod has really taken well to the points/miles game and just got back from Bucharest, where his wife was able to visit him on deployment using points and miles.

So I invited him to come on to the blog and tell you how he did it. Take it away, Jarrod.

Jarrod1

While I was deployed to Romania for 9 months, my wife and I knew that she would come to visit. The only problem? How to pay for it all without fronting the money.

The solution? Bryce Conway and his 10xTravel tips! How I did it: Continue Reading