1. A potential way to top off your Rapid Rewards account for Companion pass by buying Choice points. I would be careful, though, because Choice may shut down your account for abuse.
2. Check Amex “Offers for you” in your online profile. Many report getting an offer for $10 off $50 purchase at Diapers.com and its sister companies.
Also, check if you’ve got an offer for $10 off $75 cell phone bill.
3. Get 20% off certain IHG properties in USA and Canada. Valid for 3 + night stays through April 6th. Should be stackable with “Set your sights promo.” (h/t LoyaltyLobby)
4. Daily Getaways promo will return in March. Stay tuned for more details to come. This is a big deal in our crazy community.
5. The offer on Chase Marriott Signature Visa has been increased to 70,000 points. You have to spend $2,000 in 3 months, first year annual fee is waived. It also comes with free night certificate for category 1-4 property.
Does not pay commission at this time, though, may be added to my affiliate site within a day or two. As always, pick an offer that suits your specific needs. If you have no plans to stay at a Marriott property, it’s probably best to pass. (h/t Doctorofcredit)
On my mind
Few weeks ago, I got an email from a reader and wanted to quote a part of it:
“On my last set of applications I got Chase Sapphire Preferred 40k points and the Capital One Venture Rewards card. I will be putting Chase points to good use this summer. I know in one of your posts you were asking for people to share their plans. I will share them with you once they became a reality.
For now, what will become a humble reality this next weekend is using $209 from Capital One Venture to pay for a nice old hotel package that includes dinner and brunch in a cute city close to home.
We’re celebrating our 10 year anniversary and that will be our treat. I got a special deal in Christmas with the hotel, plus I paid nothing because I used the acquired miles from the card, so I’m excited, wanted to share.”
It was a treat for me to receive this email, so thanks so much for sharing your plans! But it got me thinking how this hobby should be precisely that: A treat. I’m sure for many (myself included), it starts to feel like a chore after doing it for a few years.
Applying for bonuses without any purpose just because everyone says it’s a hot deal, hoarding millions of points, having a panic attack at the thought of inevitable devaluation. Buying first-class mistake fare ticket for $75 and going nuts when it’s not honored (come on, people!) Doing m/s because everyone else is doing it, even though it takes time away from your family. And yes, reading blogs like this one…
It really defeats the purpose of why we all started to do this hobby in the first place. Most of us got into it because of our love for travel. We saw this golden opportunity to do it for next to nothing. It seemed too good to be true, but it was true! There is no going back now. Let’s face it, we are all hooked.
Some opportunities (otherwise unattainable) came along the way for many. Flying in first class, staying at fancy hotels. The first time, it is oh so exciting. But after awhile, this lifestyle starts to lose its luster. What was once a treat becomes the norm. So you look for the next high, and then the next. But it always fails to satisfy completely, doesn’t it?
What’s worse, you start feeling guilty about it. You are stuck in a golden hamster wheel. All this over-the-top, luxury travel.. You miss the old days of taking road trips and looking through a coupon book at the rest area, so you can get the best price on that Clarion Inn at the next exit. You know, that time when you used to have fun.
But there is no going back to road trips now, is there? Not when you can m/s a night at a luxury resort (that can only be reached by plane) for practically nothing. Except, of course, your time.
So you try to add a meaningful/culture element to it, but it too feels forced. The truth is, you are tired after working so hard to acquire your points. You are tired, period. You just want to enjoy yourself and relax for once.
If this rant sounds obnoxious and patronizing, I assure you, it’s not meant to come across that way. In fact, I’m pointing finger at myself here. Somehow along the way, many of us have lost perspective and have forgotten what really matters.
You know the famous saying: Money doesn’t buy happiness. Well, miles and points don’t either. They can certainly add spice to your life, but they won’t give it purpose or meaning.
Having millions of points doesn’t make you a millionaire. Flying in business class doesn’t make you a successful businessman you always wanted to become, but somehow never did. Interacting with other hobbyists in the forums won’t substitute for real, lasting relationships. This hobby is just a treat (or should be), nothing more.
Leana is the owner and founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.