My family got FREE flights (we just paid taxes) to 3 countries in Europe. We have been working on building our points for a special family trip and I got the three of us here on points. How did we do it?
First, I compared how many points we had with each credit card company – Chase, Amex, etc. Then I compared each airline loyalty program to see where we had the most points. I found that I had at least 60,000 United Airlines points mostly from using United Shopping (one of my favorites). I almost never buy anything in person and try to wait for the big bonuses like 10-15 points/dollar.
Then I asked my husband to see where he had the most points and it was Chase. My husband has a couple of Chase cards and because I am an authorized user we basically have a joint account. That means we can transfer any points to airline loyalty programs for either one of us. Bingo!
I actually called Chase myself and they recognized me as a cardholder (even though it’s actually his account) and I requested to transfer 120,000 points to MY United Airlines Mileage Plus account. Within a couple of days it was there – 180,000 miles, enough for 3 round trip tickets to Europe. The best part is that United allows a FREE stopover so I called an agent and asked where we could stop for free on the way to Lisbon. My stopover choice was London. I like using an agent because I can ask for various scenarios to see which are allowed, much more easily than doing it myself. It’s just a personal choice.
Next I informed the agent that I wanted an open jaw ticket which is also allowed on United award travel! That means you can fly into one city and out of another. So I booked Dulles (IAD) – Heathrow (LHR) – Lisbon (LIS) – Barcelona (BCN) – Dulles (IAD) on one award ticket for 180,000 United Points and $264.38 in taxes. Not bad!
We are currently finishing up the last part of our trip and I just received 10,200 points with a purchase on United Mileage Plus Shopping. I needed some shoes and I got 15x points plus 500 bonus points. I am well on my way to another free trip somewhere – are you?