I’m a mile and points collector. I haven’t talked about it much, but I’ll be getting into it sooner or later this year.
I love to open up new credit cards for the sign-up bonuses and utilize them for free trips around the world, whether in economy, business, or first class. It’s an experience that I get to enjoy because of my churning and credit card hobby. However, this isn’t always the case and the points could always be used for something better.
A few weeks ago, three friends and I got together at Salt Lake City (SLC), Utah to have a little reunion. We were going to stay at one of our friend’s place and he was going to show us around the city as he had recently moved there permanently for work.
Out of three of us, excluding the one that lived in SLC, two of us were flying in via airplane and the last one was driving 10 hours from Northern California. The two of us flying were going to arrive Friday Morning, whereas the one driving was going to arrive Friday Night.
By the time I arrived that morning, it turns out that there was an accident on the freeway from Northern California to Utah, which would prevent my friend (the one who was driving) to be able to drive and get to Utah on time. This means that he would miss our little reunion in Utah and would have to wait until the next one.
Luckily, since I’m a collector of miles and points, I had recently received 50,000 American Airline miles from applying to Citi’s American Airlines Platinum Credit Card, where I had to spend $3,000 to earn the miles.
We were able to quickly redeem an airplane ticket for my friend for 50,000 miles from Northern California to Salt Lake City, Utah.
To put 50,000 miles into perspective, you can redeem a ticket from Los Angeles, California to Honolulu, Hawaii for 40,000 miles round-trip.
Or even a round-trip ticket to Madrid, Spain for 45,000 miles!
The Happy Ending
While waiting for the last friend to arrive, we decided to head up to Park City, Utah to go skiing.
It was my first time skiing and I have to say that everyone has to try it. It’s definitely a super awesome experience! I could barely do pizzas and turn when I first started, but by the end of the ski session, I was much better than when I started.
Anyways, my friend was able to arrive safely the next day. The four of us hung out around Salt Lake City, checking out the history of the town, doing a little small hike, and just enjoying each other’s company with some light beers in a cozy house.We were also able to check out the salt lakes with a short hike in the morning and eat some great food!
Overall, this was a great experience and it was very enjoyable to have all of us there hanging together and catching up.
I guess the main point of this post is that sometimes the miles and points offered through credit card bonuses could be used in very special ways. Some people would use it to experience high-class luxury flights and some would use it to fly their friends and family out to experience the world together. Even though credit cards have a bad reputation most of the time, as long as you are being responsible with your finances, you should be alright. If you don’t really have an idea on what to do with your finances, I have a Simple What to Do with Your Money Guide you could check out.
For the rest of this year, I will be getting into more detail about Travel Hacking, Credit Churning, and even dive into some Travel Reports of where I’ve been in the future here on this blog and hopefully you can tune in.
But the first step to getting started is to make sure you have a good credit score and if you don’t know what affects your credit score, check out my post about The 5 Factors That Affect Your Credit Score.
If you have miles and points, what did you use them for? If not, would you consider applying for credit cards to earn some sign-up bonuses to potentially get some free travel? Why and why not?
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