Category: United Mileage Plus

Miles & Points 201 – What Fees Do I Have to Pay When Making Award Bookings?

Now that most of you have already learned how to earn and manage lots of miles and points and how to get the best mileage out of your miles in major US-based global airlines’ programs, it is time to book your award tickets before any of your miles and points expire. This post provides an easy-to-use table comparing the various award fees (in additional to mandatory taxes and security fees) some of those major airlines may charge for award travel.

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My Guest Post on UsingMiles – Getting the Most Mileage out of Your Miles

Check out my guest post “Getting the Most Mileage out of Your Miles” published on the UsingMiles blog today. The post contains a table summarizing the best redemption values offered by the four major US-based airlines for international travel. If you are a newcomer to the miles & points world, this could be helpful to you in setting a travel goal and focusing your efforts on achieving that goal efficiently. For our advanced readers, this could be a good reference tool for future trip planning.

Again, the generous FREE LIFETIME premier membership (normally $29.99/year) offered by UsingMiles to all TravelByPoints readers is still available, and you can learn more about it in this post or sign up here.

Let me know what you think! I respond to all comments.

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Earn 1,000 Free United Mileage Plus Miles for You and Your Family Members in Under 5 Minutes

United Club Card Free-fee Code Winners + More on Easier Ways to Get Star Alliance Gold Status

Happy Friday! We have randomly selected 6 winners for the United MileagePlus Club Card fee-free codes (to those not selected, don’t give up yet! You may still be able to get the card for free for your first year).

Thanks to our reader WorldTraveler1’s comment, we have an update on the Turkish Airlines’ elite status match.

Finally, we will talk about yet another alternative to securing Star Alliance Gold status/benefits WITHOUT flying 50,000 miles each year (and hopefully keep that status for as long as this Greek airline stays alive)!

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How You Can Use Less Than 75,000 Miles & Points to Replicate Our Recent Trip to Machu Picchu, Easter Island, Lake Titicaca, Lima, Santiago, and More!

This is part 2 of a series of posts devoted to our whirlwind tour of Peru & Chile.

  1. Less than $1,000 per person all-in for our 11-day tour in Peru & Chile
  2. How you can use <75,000 points to replicate our itinerary to visit Machu Picchu, Easter Island, and more
  3. How to prepare for altitude sickness in Machu Picchu & Lake Titicaca
  4. What to bring for your trip to Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca, and/or Easter Island
  5. How many different sets of tickets do you have to buy for that one-day visit to Machu Picchu?
  6. How to Create Your Own Machu Picchu “Inka Trail” Experience in One Day
  7. Using the Tambo del Inka, a Starwood Luxury Collection Resort, as Your Base for Your Visit to Machu Picchu
  8. Tour Guide #1 – Sabino for Cusco, Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, Peru
  9. Tour Guide #2 – Silvia for Puno, Lake Titicaca, Sillustani, Peru
  10. How We Did Lima, Peru in One Day
  11. Tour Guide #3 – Sergio for Easter Island, Chile
  12. Taking Advantage of an Airport Hotel for Our Walking Tour of Santiago, Chile
  13. Airport Lounge Access + LAN International Business vs. Economy
  14. Budgeting for Your Next Big Dream Vacation
  15. You Won’t Believe What Happened on Our Way Home!

During our recent South America adventure, we each flew over 16,000 miles with 10 segments. Had we had to pay for those flights, it would have cost over $20,000 for 3. You CAN replicate our entire itinerary (in economy) for less than 75,000 miles/points per person (or 35,000 for Machu Picchu only), originating in North America (even if you live in Hawaii, Alaska, or Canada)!

Our Cost for 3 Adults (all miles & points came from credit card sign-up bonuses):

  • 220,000 BA miles (including a few long-haul segments on LAN Airlines’ flat-bed premium business seats)
  • 6,120 Southwest points (3 tickets from Los Angeles to Las Vegas)
  • $580.22 (taxes, fees, and 2 tickets between Las Vegas & Los Angeles on AA)

A 3rd seat disappeared during the process of booking, so we had to split on the way to Lima. TravelWhimsy and I flew to Lima (LIM) via Los Angeles (LAX), and mom flew to LIM on AA via Miami (MIA).

 

 

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Airfare Alert – Las Vegas to Select East Coast Cities – $196 All-in!

Update (as of 2pm, Monday, March 26, 2012): Fare no longer available. Definitely lasted longer than most fare sale!

This will not last long! Book while it lasts. All fares on United.com. United lets you cancel for free within 24 hours. Las Vegas to the following cities (or reverse) for $196 all in:

  • Buffalo, NY (Niagara Falls)
  • Providence, RI (Boston or Cape Cod)
  • Hartford, CT
  • Pittsburgh, PA
  • Baltimore, MD
  • Albany, NY
  • Raleigh-Durham, NC
  • Jacksonville, FL
  • Tampa, FL
  • And some more Mid-western or Southern cities (send me a note if you need more info on locations)

Works in reverse, too. So, plan your next Las Vegas vacation!

Beginners, use www.kayak.com to look for your desired dates.

Advanced users, use matrix.itasoftware.com to look.

Good luck and have fun! If you need help with turning this into a mileage run, feel free to contact me.

Miles & Points 101 – What Else Can You Do to Increase Your Miles & Points Balance?

Before we start, here is a quick index of the “How to Get Started” series:

  1. Things to Think about Before You Start;
  2. What Is a Mile or Point Worth?
  3. Is Your Credit Going to Take a Hit?
  4. What Credit Card(s) Should You Get?
  5. How Do You Keep Track of Everything?
  6. What Else Can You Do to Increase Your Mile & Point Balance?

Besides getting credit card sign-up bonuses, using your credit cards to pay for all your purchases, and making sure you credit your flights and hotel stays to frequent traveler programs, what else is there for you to do?  Here is a quick list of things you can do, most of which will be covered in more detail in future posts.

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