Browsing Category

Success Stories

Blog, Success Stories

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

Blog, Success Stories

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

Blog, Success Stories

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

Blog, Success Stories

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!

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.

—————————-

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, Success Stories

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

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story: 5 Star Hawaiian Honeymoon Using Points & Miles

Hi Travel Junkies,

Summer is finally here and with it comes more stores of 10xT readers taking amazing trips for next to nothing.

Today I bring you the story of Paul and Taryn, newlyweds who just got back from a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Hawaii. Almost entirely booked with points and miles.

Take it away, Paul,

———————

Hawaii Success Story Paul - 1

I had got into the points/miles world one night while I was working in the ambulance. I stumbled across Bryce’s article on his big trip to Thailand randomly and was immediately intrigued.

I’m one that believes if it’s too good to be true then it probably is. But I decided to read anyways since I was bored. The more and more I read, the more and more I thought that it was actually plausible. And being a big traveler who has spent some real money on airplane tickets, I decided to email Bryce and read up on anything I could find.

Bryce talked me through a lot of the ins and outs of how points/miles work and helped me get started. I enjoyed reading his frequent emails and was immediately obsessed with this new hobby.

My wife and I at the time decided to do our honeymoon in Hawaii in April. I had some work to do. I had both myself and my wife Taryn apply for the Hawaiian credit card that was offering 50,000 bonus miles at the time. Easy. Those miles got us both a non-stop round trip to Oahu and back to Portland including two inter-island flights as well.

We flew into Maui and took a shuttle to Kaanapali, where we stayed for 5 nights at the Westin Maui Resort. We booked our room using Starpoints earned from the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card by American Express, which made our stay at this beautiful hotel almost entirely for free.

(Bryce note: You can find more information on these credit cards here)

While at the Westin we took all the spending at our hotel and charged it to our room, which had our Capital One Venture cards on file. This mean that things like poolside drinks and restaurant bills to become “travel” expenses, which allowed us to use our Capital One points to erase the charges.

Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story – Family Trips to Australia, Florida, and Canada for Next to Nothing

Hi Travel Junkies,

I love unapologetically bragging about how awesome my readers are.

And one of the ways I do this is by sharing reader success stories, which allows you to see just how powerful points/miles can be (and provides a blueprint for you to create a similar trip).

Today’s reader success story is of particular interest just because of the sheer amount of cheap travel that Leah and her family were able to book.

Over the last 12 months they have traveled to South Florida and Australia and already have another trip booked to spend a couple days in Canada. All for pennies on the dollar.

And today Leah is going to tell you how they did it.

Take it away, Leah.

LeahYoder-1

Leah and her family in Sydney, Australia

The best thing about the points/miles hobby is that once you “get it” everything seems to fit together nicely.

Your view of how credit cards, frequent flyer miles, and other types of points all work completely shifts and you start to see opportunities everywhere.

That’s exactly what happened for me just a few months after I discovered Bryce’s blog, 10xTravel.com. His site has been a source of constant information for me, and I’ve been able to use his user-friendly step-by-step breakdowns to plan a number of family vacations for next to nothing.

Let’s start with our trip to Fort Myers, Florida.

After reading Bryce’s article about the Southwest Companion Pass my husband and I decided to try to earn one. My husband is self-employed so we opted to get both the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Card and the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Card, which were each offering a bonus of 50,000 Southwest Miles at the time. Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

Reader Success Story: Thailand for Next to Nothing

One of the things I love most about 10xT is getting to see some of the amazing trips that my readers have been able to put together.

I share these with all of you from time to time for 3 reasons:

  1. Many of you like to use these stories as a blueprint for your own future travels (today’s story is a prime example of that)
  2. It’s great to see specific examples of just how valuable points/miles can be
  3. Let’s be honest, I love unapologetically bragging about how amazing all of you are

Today I want to introduce you to longtime 10xT reader Chris, who read about my trip to Thailand last summer and was inspired to put together a similar vacation for him and his girlfriend.

Take it away Chris.

——————

Thailand Tiger

My trip started simply enough, I wanted to go to Thailand.

So what would you do if you wanted to go to Thailand but didn’t want to spend $10,000 doing it? You google “Cheap Trips to Thailand”.

After sifting through the normal BS, I stumbled upon a link to Bryce’s overview of how he used points to book a $28,000+ trip to Thailand for ~$300.

I was obviously a bit skeptical, it seemed a bit overwhelming. But I decided to email Bryce anyway.

Worth a shot right?

Bryce was gracious enough to hop on the phone with me and walk me through a step-by-step plan of which points I would need, how I could go about earning them, and he helped me map out the trip (I basically wanted the same trip as him). Continue Reading

Blog, Success Stories

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

Another day, another incredible success story by 10xT readers Mat and Lacey.

Mat and Lacey just booked an incredible trip to Europe for next to nothing thanks to their incredible success with points and miles.

Today’s story is particularly interesting for two reasons.

  1. Mat and Lacey share specific points/miles they used for their trip (making it easier for you to duplicate their amazing trip)
  2. Mat and Lacey are the creators of Ditching Normal, a fantastic blog that teaches people how to start enjoying the more important things in life.

Take it away Mat and Lacey!

——————-

Mat and Lacey on Beach

My wife Lacey and I booked our first “big” trip on points recently!

This spring we’ll be traveling to 5 different locations over a 15 day period…all on credit card points.  From our hometown of Boise, ID we’re heading to the island of Malta and back with stops along the way in New York City, Florence, Rome, and Chicago. 

As exciting and as relatively easy as it was perform the actual booking of this trip, accumulating enough points for free flights and hotels took us about 8 months of strategizing.

Before getting into the details of how we booked this trip on points, I need to point out that we never would have had the confidence to even start up with the credit card points game had it not been for the knowledge we gained from 10xtravel.com

While the numerous tips on stacking points and detailed credit card recommendations continue to be helpful, what we found to be invaluable (especially in the beginning) was the knowledge we gained about how credit scores work.  My wife Lacey NEVER would have let me involved with multiple credit cards at once if it weren’t for 10xTravel.  I owe ya one Bryce! Continue Reading