Five Nights In Hawaii, by Daniel
My wife and I and our two kids are going to Hawaii and staying five nights at the Sheraton Maui Resort in Maui for a whopping total of $275 (my youngest son is under two). We did the Delta Suntrust deal for 125k ($275), and redeemed it for three 40k Delta non-stops to Maui.
My wife doesn’t have the best credit yet (never had a credit card before our marriage; were working on that), so I had to do both Starwood Preferred Guest credit cards myself, business and personal. Six months later, we had 80k Starwood points to spend. So we used 48k of those to book our room in Hawaii (fifth night free).
Five nights in Hawaii for a family of four for only $275? I would call that a success story by any measure!
How much the trip would have cost us otherwise:
Tickets: $680 x 3 = $2040
Hotel After Taxes: $300/night x 5 = $1500
For a Total of: $3,540 (or, in our case, $275!)
And from Elena:
I just wanted to share my free trip that I am taking this weekend.
My sister lives in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. I decided to visit her and take my boyfriend. I paid for both plane tickets by signing up for the Southwest credit card and getting the free flight with first purchase and the $500 for a minimum spend. For the hotel, we are staying at the Sheraton for three nights by using 21,000 Starwood Preferred Guest points. Usually this hotel runs about $200 per night this time of year. Luckily, my sister is a scuba instructor and works on a snorkel boat so she is going to give us free lessons and free boat tour. Of course I will be treating her for dinner afterward. I will be able to visit my sister and have lots of fun on the beach!
Sunday Funnies Coming to an End
We are revamping the Sunday blog post to include your Success Stories by removing the Funnies. If you have a successful frugal trip story you’d like to share, send it to me at .
Lucky Hits the New York Times
Ben’s One Mile at a Time blog is featured in today’s New York Times Travel Section. He is discussing his methods of success with Bumping and does a terrific job of laying out his strategy. With all the readers of the Times, you can expect a little more competition for those vouchers now.
Congratulations Ben on hitting the Big Time
IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card
- Annual Fee: $49 fee waived for the first year
- Foreign Fees: No
- Card Type: Hotel
The IHG Rewards Club Visa is often cited as one of the most underrated hotel credit cards, with good reason. The official offer is for 70,000 points after $1,000 spent within three months, with the first year’s fee waived. The card comes with an annual free night certificate that can be used at any IHG property, including Intercontinental hotels - making this certificate worth upwards of 50,000 points. This is far more generous than some other hotel cards, which limit the categories in which free night certificates can be redeemed.
Cardholders earn 5 points per dollar at IHG hotels; 2 points per dollar at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants; 1 point per dollar everywhere else. Moreover, you’ll get a 10% rebate on award redemptions, up to 100,000 points per year. The card also comes with Platinum status, though that doesn’t get you much with IHG. Still, this is a fantastic card to have in your wallet, with benefits that far outweigh the already low $49 annual fee.
- Earn 70,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of account opening
- Enjoy a free night of card membership at over 4,700 hotels worldwide
- Earn 5 points for each $1 spent at our hotels
- Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants
- Bonus points redeemable at hotels such as Intercontinental® Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts and Holiday Inn®
- Automatic platinum elite status, as long as you remain a cardmember
- $0 introductory annual fee the first year, then $49