I really miss online poker, and as such, I’ve joined the poker minor leagues and am playing events on the WSOP Circuit. But I’ll be back at it this June in Las Vegas at the largest poker tournament of all, the World Series of Poker at the Rio All Suites Hotel. This will be my third trip to the event and hopefully, I’ll last past the first day this time. With age, they say, patience comes… I’m still waiting I guess.
The tournament consists of over 60 separate events with all poker formats. Entry fees run from $500 to $10,000 for the championship event. I’m too frugal to cough up the entry fee so my trip consists of trying to win a single table satellite event at about $125 that will win me enough to enter the Seniors Tournament with an entry fee of $1,000. I earned my way in the last two times I tried and was off to the races with some of the best old guys in the world. For you poker fans, I sat at a table next to Doyle Brunson several years ago and have seen all the big poker stars at the event during my previous trips.
It took me over a week to find my ticket due to a personal character flaw I wonder if any of you suffer from. I am too cheap for myself sometimes. I always want to fly on low level awards. For a week I tried HHH, SAV, CHS, CAE and JAX low level availability. I finally found a seat but it was a day earlier than I wanted to go, returned on a redeye to a city I would have to drive home from and just was a miserable itinerary. You know that one… the one you hate to pull the trigger on.
Finally after struggling for a week I checked a paid flight on American where I hold top tier status (probably an upgrade), found my exact date and times from my closest AA airport Savannah, with good connections in Dallas at $564. OUCH. I’m not worth spending $564 to fly to a poker tournament Can you feel where I’m coming from? We hoard and hoard these miles without common sense. I could have easily done an ANYTIME award and got just what I wanted. Or better yet, use the bump vouchers I’ve got sitting in my folder of goodies that are about to expire anyway. I’m a head case at times.
I ended up putting the paid ticket on hold then called the Exec Plat line to book with my $300 voucher and and one of my $200 AA gift cards I got for free with the Platinum card from American Express. Somehow I could see spending $64 out of pocket but not the full $564.
The Exec Plat agent was great, told me that she couldn’t combine my gift card with a bump voucher so I ended up using both my $300 voucher and Katy’s and will receive a credit back from AA for the residual value of $36 and the gift cards are still intact.
No bucks out of pocket from the Frugal Travel Guy so far, and no guilt going now. Any other poker players in the audience heading to the World Series of Poker in mid June? Drop me a line if so, and lets compare dates and plans.