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Paying the “Idiot” Tax, aka Keeping Spirit Miles from Expiring

I’ve mentioned before that if you are disorganized like me, eventually, you will end up paying what I call the “idiot” tax. I’ve actually paid it quite a few times over the course of my adventures in this parallel universe of ours. Like transferring Avios  at a cost of $45, when I was only short 600 miles for a redemption. Unfortunately, there were many other instances. So, why do I still participate in this hobby?

Well, for one, I’m addicted. It’s not that easy to leave the cult known simply as The Hobby, so my goal is to keep it from reaching unhealthy levels. Needless to say, blogging doesn’t help… Also, even though, at times I lose points due to my lack of organization, I figure I still come out ahead, all things considered. So, that’s what I keep telling myself  about my latest “idiot” tax payment.

Man, just writing this, I get this image in my head of Donald Trump telling me: “You are an idiot. I’m a winner. You are a loser.” This is a  golden time to be a comedian in America.



See, he agrees with me!

Anyway, few months ago, I convinced my in-laws to get Spirit Signature Mastercard. My husband got it as well, unbeknownst to him.  The reason? I want us all to go to Costa Rica next fall utilizing  off-peak pricing of 5,000 miles roundtrip. This plan may or may not materialize, and frankly, I don’t know why I got the cards this far ahead. I think it had to do with the fact that minimum spending is only $1 to get 15,000 miles’ bonus. You can also get an offer that comes with $100 credit on top of it, when you make a dummy booking on Spirit. For that, you would have to spend $500 in 3 months, still fairly low.

Anyways, we got all three cards and everything was dandy. Except, there was one problem. Spirit currency expires after 3 months of not having freshly earned miles in the account. I just put a recurring Netflix bill on my husband’s Spirit MasterCard and asked my in-laws  to do the same thing. My MIL said she would  charge something every month. I meant to follow up with her just to make sure she was doing it, but forgot. So, last week, I asked her how her Spirit miles were doing. She said, she has not used the card at all after getting the bonus. Say what? That’s the thing, normal people are not like us. You have to stay after them. This one is totally on me.

So, I logged in to their accounts and saw that the miles were set to expire in 10 days. Even if we charged something on the card right then, they would not post in time. Yikes! Naturally, I didn’t want to let that happen, so started to look for ways to prevent us from losing the stash. The easiest thing to do is buy 1,000 miles for $27.50. That’s what I did with each account, and they posted immediately.

spirit buy miles

Of course, right after I did that, I remembered all the countless mileage promos Spirit has at the moment. Quick search on Google turned up quite  a few ways you can earn some miles. Here they are:

  1. Miles for thoughts It’s a survey site, and you get 400 miles after completing your very first survey. Of course, it may take a few weeks to post.
  2. Bare Fare Questionnaire You get 1,500 miles for answering extremely simple questions. Quick tip: Stick with a “bear,” unless you want to get in trouble with your spouse. Seriously. OK, I did click on the “dude.” So, I went ahead and answered the questions, and the miles posted that day. Ugh! That means I didn’t have to pony up $55 after all. Oh well, I just have to budget for “idiot” tax, that’s all there is to it.

There are other Spirit promos, so make sure to check the website if you are into collecting their currency. Or just charge something each month, but don’t forget to pay it. I’ve said before that Spirit program can be incredibly valuable for some (check my post for more).

Here is a post on ways to keep other type of miles from expiring.  It’s a couple years old, but the info is still relevant. One program that’s not listed is Southwest. You have to have earning activity every 24 months in order to not lose your Rapid Rewards points. There are many ways to do it besides flying: Transfer 1,000 Ultimate Rewards, buy something from Southwest shopping partners or join a dining program. Of course, you can always buy miles like I did. That doesn’t make you an idiot, no matter what Donald Trump says.

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Author: Leana

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.

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5 thoughts on “Paying the “Idiot” Tax, aka Keeping Spirit Miles from Expiring

      • I’m only just starting to get to the point where this type of “mistake” (ie, lack of complete perfection) doesn’t drive me crazy, so believe me, I get your pain. Nowadays I tell myself whatever extra I spend, it’s cheaper than a psychiatrist.

    • Audrey, yeah, the quest to find perfection… Been there, done that. It’s funny, in some ways, this hobby is good for me because it occupies my OCD mind, not to mention, we get to travel for pennies on the dollar. On the other hand, I feel like I’ll eventually need a psychiatrist, which will end up costing me more than I could ever get through sign up bonuses.

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