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					Travel Hacking
    by Mark Wah
             Sponsors

• Triangle Lifestyle Designers and Digital
  Nomads:
    • http://www.meetup.com/Triangle-
      Lifestyle-Designers/
• Bull City Coworking:
    • http://bullcitycoworking.com/
 What is travel hacking?


• Travel hacking is the art of enabling low
  cost travel
• Here are some examples ...
Doing it multiple times?
Airfare to Hawaii for $10
       Industry Updates
• Credit Card Companies
  • Chase - most generous offering
  • American Express
  • Citibank, others
• Airlines
  • Mergers, Acquisition, Bankruptcy
  • Alliances
     Travel Hacking 101


• 3 steps:
  • Preparation
  • Accumulation and Redemption
  • Enjoy the trip!
          1. Preparation
• Good credit score is a must (FICO score
  >650)
• Check credit score for free at:
• http://www.creditkarma.com/
• Understand frequent flyer miles
• Understand points and credits
         1. Preparation

• Best to have travel goals
• Understand cost of redemption
• Hawaii as an example (low season):
  • American Airlines (35,000 miles)
  • United, Delta, US Air (40,000 miles)
          1. Preparation


• Europe as an example (low season):
  • American (50,000 miles)
  • United, Delta, US Air (60,000 miles)
          1. Preparation

• Accumulating hotel credits
• Earn $50 credits up to 3/month and up to 10 per
  account at Expedia and similar travel website
  with best price guarantee

• Resource:
  • http://bestrateguarantee.blogspot.com/
           1. Preparation
• Miles alternative:
  • Hotel points
     • Marriott Rewards
     • Hilton Honors
  • Reward points
     • Chase Sapphire
     • Thank You points
            1. Preparation
• Resources:
  • Blogs
    • Boarding area
      • http://boardingarea.com/
    • Frugal Travel Guy
      • http://www.frugaltravelguy.com/
        1. Preparation

• Forums:
 • flyertalk
   • http://www.flyertalk.com/
 • milepoint
   • http://milepoint.com/forums/
       2. Accumulation &
          Redemption
• Apply for the specific cards that will meet your
  travel goals

• You can apply to more than 1 card (Visa,
  Mastercard, American Express) in some cases

• Use multiple browsers trick
  • http://millionmilesecrets.com/2011/10/11/citi-
     aadvantage-50000/
https://creditcards.citi.com/credit-cards/aadvantage-
                     credit-cards/
      2. Accumulation &
         Redemption
• Be careful with spending requirements:
  • Example $750 in 4 months
  • $5,000 in 6 months
  • Buy gift cards
• Don’t forget hotel credits and points
     2. Accumulation &
        Redemption

• Need to find low season for redemption
• Airline release seats about 300-335 days
  ahead
• Use pointhub:
• https://www.pointhub.com/
      2. Accumulation &
         Redemption


• Expedia credit tips:
  • Book each day separately
  • $50 off each day
          3. Enjoy the trip


• Update your calendar
• Tools
  • TripIt: http://www.tripit.com/
• Pack your bags and go!
      What’s the catch?
• Good credit score is the key (FICO 650-
  800)
• Need time to plan accumulation of miles,
  points and credits
• Need to redeem ahead of time,
  understand requirements
• Miles and points inflation (SkyPesos)
          Case Study 1
• Step 1 Preparation
  • Have good credit, read blogs and resources
  • Goal: South America, Hawaii
• Step 2 Accumulation and Redemption
  • 100,000 miles with British Airways by Chase -
    meet spending requirement

  • Expedia $50 credits
  • Hotel points
         Case Study 1
• Step 2 Continued (Redemption)
  • Rio de Janeiro / Buenos Aires (40,000
    miles - 8 months ahead)
    • Use of Expedia $50 credits
  • Hawaii (35,000 miles - 4 months)
    • Use of hotel points
  • Montreal (25,000 miles - 2 months)
          Case Study 1


• Step 3: Enjoy the trip!
  • Forward Itinerary to TripIt
  • Take lots of pictures!
   More travel hacking?


• Just touching the surface
• Travel hacking 201
  • Massive accumulation
  • Credit card / gift card churning
          Case Study 2

• Massive miles and points accumulation
• http://chrisguillebeau.com/3x5/the-5-
  million-frequent-flyer-mile-challenge/
• 12 credit cards
  • 300,000 miles
  • $497 annual fee
          Case Study 2

• Mini project
  • 5 cards
  • 185,000 miles
  • 40,000 hotel points
  • $75 annual fees
   More travel hacking?

• Travel hacking 301
  • Elite Status / Status Challenge
  • Flying first / business class
  • Mix and match
  • Round the world trips
         Case Study 3


• Around the world for $418
• http://nerdfitness.com/blog/2010/12/09/ho
  w-to-fly-35000-miles-visit-4-continents-9-
  countries-and-15-cities-for-418/
  Travel Hacking Issues


• Miles accumulation is difficult - labor
  intensive
• 4+ years of research
• No automation
• Education
  • Travel Hacking 101, 201, 301
• Automation tools
  • Challenge / Project Based
  • Auto reminders, progress
• Case studies
  • Replicate previous successes
          Why do this?

• Love to help family and friends with their
  travel goals
• Learn to appreciate what we have
• Learn about other cultures and
  appreciate them
Travelhack3r Baby steps


• Phase 1: Consulting
• Phase 2: Membership / Automation
• Phase 3: Free / Advanced Automation
• Phase 1
 • Consulting
 • Customize plan (Domestic &
   International) with reminders
 • Success stories / Portfolio
 • Deal alerts
 • Phone and e-mail Support
• Phase 2
 • Membership / Subscription
 • Customize plan (Domestic &
   International) - semi-automated
• Phase 3
 • Revenue through credit card affiliation
 • Advanced automation
 • Free Membership
  What if I don’t want my
           miles?


• Donate to charity ... or me
• Get almost lifetime worth of magazines
• http://magsformiles.com/index.php
              Join Us



• http://www.travelhack3r.com

				
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posted:1/31/2013
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