Archive | January 2016

Get South this March Break!

So lately I’ve had a few people come up to me and ask how I can afford to go to Florida again on March break after I was just there in December.

 

Well, when you hardly spend any money other than groceries it is not that hard.

You have to buy food anyway right?

I have done a few pages that are the “most commonly asked questions” I get on a daily basis.

“How DO You Do This” is just that – how you get started on this process.

“A Free Week In Florida” is the same – how you get to and stay in Florida for free.

It takes times – don’t get me wrong. But since we don’t travel every single month, we end up “banking” our flight and hotel points for the future trips.

My pages are for starters like you may be – I’ll leave the more complicated posts and pages to the pros – but I personally don’t know anyone that travels by themselves first class all over the world.

I do hear friends lamenting all the time about needing a vacation South, how bad our dollar is, hard to find cheap flights, etc.

Well go South! Drive if you have to – GAS IS CHEAP! Put up with the kids for a long day – BUT DO IT!

Starting the process of collecting points is frustrating but is extremely rewarding.

One cheap way to do it  – drive down this time, get some hotel points now and stay for free.

It is that simple – our pages I mention above show you 1 or 2 cards to get now to be ready for this March break.

GO!!! why not?

 

 

 

Hopper to the Rescue…

When booking and finding flights for people I usually have to book a family so every cent saved helps.

 

 

Most of the people I know appreciate saving a few bucks on flights so this is important.

I had specific flights picked out for a destination that I knew I couldn’t use my Avios for, so it was going to be cash.

I usually keep Google flights up and ready for this and this time was no exception.

 

 

 

 

It showed me what I needed to know – times, prices, airlines other options.

Where the Hopper App comes in saved me money.

There was a flight I was watching on Hopper (you can do that on other sites, yes) that gave me the message “Wait for a better price” and Why. It gave me the possible prices this flight could dip down to in the next few days – AND IT WAS EXACTLY RIGHT!

It also tells you when the prices will start to rise on the flight as well.

Turns out, it gave me exactly the correct day to buy the flights and saved me about$25/flight.

That’s $100 when booking 4 flights and that’s something.

Go to hopper.com and check it out – it’s a fun travel tool to use.

 

Karen has deals posted!

Check out Karen’s latest deals she posted, remember she is a licensed travel agent so she can find you anything!

This is the link to her page.

Call her at 519-542-1009/ email karen@traveldiscounters.ca/ visit her in the Kenwick Building, Sarnia.

Many locals go to her for deals.

Here are two.

karen1

 

karen2

AMEX 25% bonus to Avios is Back!

Love this bonus! LOVE it!

karen1

Now it’s not the same as 3 years ago when it was a 50% bonus, but times are changing and this may be as good as it gets going forward.

They did this one in the fall of 2015 and who knows how long they will keep doing these – they already got rid of the referral bonus on the Gold Rewards Card.

Still, a great bonus it is.

I always use flights to Florida as my example and that won’t change.

See our page on Avios on how you redeem Avios for flights.

2 examples.

A) If you were to get the Gold Rewards Card (free first year) and spend $500 on it you end up with 25,500 MR points. Using this bonus you would have near 32,000 Avios.

You can fly anywhere in Canada and US (not Hawaii/Alaska) with those points.

More importantly you could fly 2 people on a shorter haul flight for 15,000 total Avios each.

That actually goes pretty far. Up to 2300 miles round trip.(look at blue class)

 

Cleveland to Miami is 2160 miles round. Only 15,000 Avios per person!

Obviously your spouse/travel partner can do the same if you are a family of 4 that gets you to Florida nice and cheap.

Like I mentioned, the referral bonus is gone so you will now have near 64,000 Avios if you just did the minimum spend.

 

B) Now that is probably what most people would do, but I have another suggestion.

Are you going to spend near $5000 in the next 3 months? More? Good.

Currently, the Amex Business Gold Rewards Card is FREE first year and offers a 40,000 point sign up bonus when you spend $5000 in 3 months. So that is a total of 45,000 MR points. Yes, for most people that is too much money so you might have to stick with simple.

Think utilities, phone bills, insurance, paying other peoples’ bills etc.

You have to be creative to spend that much, but it can be easier than you think.

This card STILL OFFERS A REFERRAL BONUS to that same card.

Refer your spouse/partner and pick up another 10,000 points. Now they may or may not be able to spend $5000 but you picked up 55,000 points for your troubles.

So that gives you 68,750 or near 70,000 Avios using the 25% bonus. More free flights.

This is our referral link to those 2 cards. Send me an email if interested. Thanks!

goldcard ad

 

 

 

 

What a DEAL!

Karen just sent me a great ALL INCLUSIVE deal.

Here it is…4 star + for $385 + taxes in Bahamas!

Call this lady! 519-542-1009/ email her karen@traveldiscounters.ca/ visit her in the Kenwick building, Sarnia.

Place looks amazing.

karen1

Getting to Florida…on a budget.

So, my family and I just got back from a nice trip to Florida in which we drove the whole way.

Map to Florida, USA

As we were driving I was noticing how cheap gas is in the US – it averaged $1.90/gallon – way cheaper than our current $1.00/litre even with exchange!

I also noticed how we used points for our hotel stays the first nights of driving and started to think about this post – YOU CAN GET TO FLORIDA CHEAP IF YOU WANT!

March break is coming and if you can’t afford to fly and haven’t bothered reading any of my posts on how to fly for free – consider driving!

 

But wait you say – “why didn’t you find free flights then?”

Believe me, I looked for months – many months – almost a year in advance and couldn’t find any – I had email and expert flyer alerts and still nothing – so we drove.

Driving with young children can be tough – but it wasn’t – this time – we got lucky our kids behaved really well.

 

 

We have a page devoted to this already – “A Free Week in Florida”

That talks about flights. I’m going to tell you right now that gas costed us about $300 US total with a RAM truck for a 20 hour trip there and back.

That’s about the price of 1 flight. But that got 4 of us there.

Yes, we needed hotels for 2 nights but of course we had hotel points so that cost us nothing extra.

Yes, we had to eat, but we packed lunches and just ate dinners out as the hotels offered free breakfasts!

 

What we didn’t have to do was rent a car for a week – that right there saves you about $350 US or about $500 CDN.

Now, we rented a house which was planned months in advance but with certain hotel credit cards you could easily stay a week in Florida for free.

See our page mentioned above or see our page on “How Do You Do This?”

It’s easy and you have time – approx. 2 months till our Canadian March break – you can have enough points through the Amex Starwood Card, the Chase Marriott Card or MBNA Best Western Mastercard TO STAY A WEEK FOR FREE!

This is the time to try this out – New Year – why not?

 

Seriously, if you haven’t been to Florida and want to go and stay for a week cheaply get one of those above mentioned cards and drive down.

If you can drive it in one day you will save 2 free hotel nights as well.

For us it would be leave at 4am and get into our place around midnight – tough, but can be done.

Anyways, it’s a frugal way to go, but you won’t break the bank!