End-of-year Southwest Gift Card Giveaway

Update: the giveaway is over, the winner is Michelle B.

Well, friends, it’s that time of year again. And what a crazy year it has been! Justin Bieber got married, enough said. We are wrapping things up here at Miles For Family  “empire”, at least for 2018.

Posting will be light over the next few weeks, while Nancy and I spend time with our respective families. I suggest you do the same if circumstances allow it. Less miles/points and more reading annoying children books, at least that’s my goal. Throw in endless “Uncle Grandpa” cartoon episodes, and this mommy will go cuckoo for cocoa puffs soon, guaranteed. 

I’m pretty sure my four (yes, four!) cats are currently on a mission to push me in that direction. Just look at the area around my porch, photo taken this morning:

I think the rascals were trying to get to the bag of cat food inside. “The Shawshank Redemption” in reverse? This is my everyday life. Not trips to Bora Bora or fancy stays in Park Hyatt Sydney. And I’m more than OK with that.

If you came here looking for a controversial end-of-year rant from yours truly, sorry to disappoint you. Haters gonna hate, but I’m not playing that game. Plus, I don’t really have much to rant about. All in all, it’s been a pretty darn good year. Obviously, I’ve had problems and failures like everyone else, but I also have much to be thankful for. 

I’ve fulfilled my dream of visiting South Pacific and lived to tell the tale. More importantly, my kids are relatively happy and healthy. Well, the other day, my 8-year-old son angrily told me I should go back to Russia. Dude, I’m not even from Russia! I should work on his attitude, though judging by the way I’ve turned out, there isn’t a lot of hope, I’m afraid.   

I know for some of you 2018 was a difficult year, and I’m not referring to miles and points angle. Maybe you have gone through a painful divorce or experienced a loss of a loved one. If so, my heart goes out to you. I hope 2019 will mark a new beginning. If you are depressed and can’t see a way out, please reach out to someone.

Of course, Nancy and I want to thank our loyal readers. We appreciate you sticking with us so far. We know there are many (so many!) other blogs you can support instead. Your comments, emails and yes, your credit card applications is what keeps this site going. Lack of support=no blog, simple as that.

We pour many hours into this “beast” hoping to educate, inspire and just make people laugh. Mission accomplished? Blogging is a bit like stand-up comedy. Except, you rarely hear the laughter but you definitely hear the hecklers. It is what it is.

But most of all, I want to thank Nancy for being Nancy. My good friend and a partner in crime.

As always, it’s never my intention to offend anyone or manufacture problems out of thin air. I try to be as impartial as possible and help readers decide whether it’s worth it to pursue a certain credit card, hotel redemption and so on. Your time is valuable, which is why I don’t mince words when it comes to my personal opinions. But at the end of the day, they are just that: opinions.  

On to gift card giveaway rules. Please, leave one comment by 5 PM Eastern, December 20th. Tell us about your favorite redemption or travel memory of 2018. Make sure to sign in with your email, so I know how to contact you. Don’t worry, it won’t be visible to other commenters.  The winner will get a $50 Southwest gift card. I will select this person randomly, without any bias. I promise! 

In the meantime, don’t forget to follow our Facebook page where we regularly share miles and points updates. See you in 2019 (I hope).

Author: Leana

Leana is the 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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33 thoughts on “End-of-year Southwest Gift Card Giveaway

  1. Figuring out a way to get enough Disney cards to go on a Disneyland Family trip next year and stay at the Disneyland hotel for eleven of us including our divorced parents!!!

  2. Hi, Nothing glamorous but we were able to take our middle son to visit colleges in Florida. Points allowed us to fly our oldest, who is in college, to Florida for a weekend to meet up with us and relive his childhood in meeting Star Wars characters at Disney Hollywood Studios. Finally, we were able to see our youngest enjoy swimming in the ocean on Sanibel Island before they had the dead fish problem. It has been a stressful year but looking back at those memories makes me smile!

  3. Our trip to New Zealand! We used points for the flights and 8 out of 11 nights accommodations—including the Intercontinental in Wellington.

  4. I really enjoy your real life down to earth blog! Thank you! I redeemed southwest miles for 3 nights at a Disney value hotel for my best friend and I. I also used SW miles to fly her down from NJ to Orlando and AA miles to fly from my hometown. We had the best time at Disney – just the two of us!

  5. Taking my kids to explore tide pools in Monterey, buying fresh fruit from the stands on the side of the road, and playing in the freezing waves in San Jose, California.

    Thanks for the good content. I always enjoy your realistic, down-to-earth views on travel and life.

  6. Favorite redemption, reward flights for our family of 4 into Dubrovnik and return from Venice, three weeks exploring the Dalmatian Coast and Slovenia – priceless! Thanks for your inspiration and practical how-to information!

  7. I was able to fly to watch my first grandchild be born, and am flying my daughter, her husband and the new baby out to me and then on to visit other family members for the holidays.

  8. A 9 day, 10th anniversary trip to Europe (London, Paris and Amsterdam) with all flights in business class and phenomenal hotels covered by points and miles!

  9. Family vacation at Ponte Vedra Inn & Club – five star resort in the Jacksonville beach area. So much fun and great memories made.

  10. Thank you for continuing this hilarious blog and all your email help. 2018 is very memorable with a lot of trips supported by points, miles, and Southwest CP. The top one was NYC on UA and AA miles to see Hamilton and Mean Girls while staying at TYRP over Thanksgiving.

  11. Favorite travel memory of 2018 – renting the most amazing house just outside of Denver with 20 of our closest friends to celebrate our 40th birthdays and spending a weekend of hiking, bar hopping and just the most amazing scenery! Definitely the trip of a lifetime!

  12. My best redemption value in 2018 was to Boston’s Fairmont Copley Plaza. I applied for the Fairmont card in 2017 before it went away in order to get the two free nights certs. The hotel was absolutely fantastic, we got upgraded to a corner one bedroom suite, upwards of $800+ a night for TWO NIGHTS! We didn’t have to pay a single dime. Flights were on AA from LGA (it was my birthday, decided to splurge for the short-haul trip). It was just me, my wife and my 3yo son. We had a grand time in Boston and meeting up with family there. Just felt like such a waste without more people in the suite with us. It was definitely more than enough room for three people. Also received other free perks from other stuff during that week (i.e. Au Bon Pain birthday certs, DD free coffee, etc.) Overall, probably the best redemption I’ve ever made so far. More to come in 2019! We have two Ritz certs to be utilized along with some other free nights. I hope we get chosen for the gift card so we can go on more trips with the family!

  13. I very much enjoy your blog! My favorite redemption this year was flying business class for the very first time on a trip to Switzerland with my sister, and then hiking the Alps with her.

  14. I love reading your posts! Thank you so very much for all the time you spend helping others! My favorite trip in 2018, well that’s a tie since I went to Cancun twice with 2 different friends. Both were amazing, and both trips I could not have afforded without the travel points and miles!
    Thank you for the lack of pretentious, snooty, snotty, and snide stories and comments! This blog feels like home (even though I am child free). Many of the other blogs feel like they are for rich people, which I am certainly not! Your stories are way more helpful and obtainable for people like me. Thanks again for all you do! Clyn6

  15. my favorite redemption was in October spending 12k per night for four nights at Hyatt Place Honolulu. With a full breakfast included this is a very good value.

  16. NYC during Spring Break is expensive, but thank you JetBlue & Hyatt for 4 free roundtrip flights and 7 free nights. Glad 2018 is almost over…from July to December was just brutal. I think I deserve a drink!

  17. One of our most recent trips was a RT on Delta with Miles to Houston and we managed to get a Disney cruise for $700 including tips and taxes! Relaxing time with the family!

  18. Last-second three day weekend in Nashville to see Beyonce and T-Swift last spring. With companion pass and AirBNB, the tickets for one show ended up being more than what we spent on all our travel and food (but it was still a pair of great shows!).

  19. “Dude! I’m not from Russia!” Hahahahahahahahahaha!

    Best redemption for me was 5 RT tickets from NZ to MN, skiing in CO, and upcoming “honeymoon” at Intercontinental in Wellington!

    (I never fly SW though so don’t give me the prize)

  20. My best redemption was traveling to Mexico with my mom. She’s taken me so many places, so one of the first trips I planned after joining this hobby was a vacation with Mom.

    We used the Southwest companion pass to fly to Cancun. Ultimate rewards points for a stay at the Marriott where we upgraded to a beachfront room. And more Ultimate Rewards points to book our excursions which included a day trip to Chichen Itza and an afternoon on Isla Mujeres. All in, we only paid cash for a few meals and souvenirs.

    Seeing the Mexican pyramids was a bucket list item for me. And my mom still likes to brag about her “amazing” daughter that took her on an amazing vacation for nearly free.

  21. Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway! And thanks for all the nice comments. The winner is Michelle B. The “B” is important because we had two commenters with the name Michelle. 🙂
    There were 32 entries and the number (from the random number generator) was 25. I will be emailing the winner shortly.

    “Search Results


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