Wondering how We Get To Travel for (almost) free so often? It’s because Zuzu & I are earning and redeeming points every month. Even though we get to travel alot, we absolutely believe that YOU should Get To Travel for Free, too!
If you want to learn to travel for (almost) free, take inspiration from how we earn and redeem points! Here are the highlights of what we did in June 2023.
June Monthly Update
Turk & Caicos Vacation Booked!
After 20+ trips since 2021, Zuzu & I are always excited to go somewhere new. This time, our schedule aligned with a great opportunity to visit Turks and Caicos on the cheap!
(LOL, “Turks & Caicos on the cheap” is a pretty extreme oxymoron!)
We’re on Providenciales for 5 nights and our total out of pocket cost for the entire trip should be around $750-1,000.
- Booked 2 R/T tickets on American for 54k AA points and $310 taxes & fees.
- Booked 5 nights at the exclusive Point Grace Resort for 175k Hyatt points. Saved $5,842.
Chicago Business trip:
If you can get business expenses reimbursed, that can be a great way to rack up some points!
I had a quick, 1 night business trip to Chicago in June with my biggest client. By putting all the trip expenses on my own credit card and getting reimbursed, I earned over 5000 points. As a goodwill gesture to a great client, I used my own Hyatt points for our hotel stay.
- 2 Roundtrip tickets on SWA to Chicago. Earned 3006 SWA points & 430 Chase points.
- Redeemed 30k Hyatt points for 2 rooms at Hyatt Regency Chicago. Saved my client ~$800.
- 2 Lyft rides. Earned 2010 Chase points.
Zion National Park:
Our full travel gang is heading to Zion National Park this Fall. Since there’s not an option to cover most of this trip on points, this will probably be our most expensive vacation this year.
The 10 of us will spend 5 nights at a huge condo but several of us are flying out early. To keep our out of pocket costs down, we’re staying for free on points at a Hyatt Place for those 2 extra nights.
- Booked 2 nights at St George Hyatt Place in Utah for 24k Hyatt points. Saved $402.
- Booked 2 R/T flights on SWA. Would have been $551 cash but we had some flight credits that nearly covered the full cost.
That’s close to $1000 that we’re saving by travel hacking but this trip will still be 2x more than our once-in-a-lifetime vacation to Hawaii in February last year.
We’ll have a fantastic time but it’s even better when you have a fantastic time and DON’T spend as much money!
World of Hyatt Status
Zuzu & I think that Hyatt has the best hotel loyalty program. When you reach top level elite Globalist status by staying 60 nights in a year, you get great perks like room upgrades, waived resort fees and free breakfast.
We’ve been Globalists since 2020 and are currently sitting at 47 of 60 nights on our way to extending status thru 2025.
On the Amex side, I used $600 in Dell credits to get a pair of Bose surround sound speakers for almost free. Total out of pocket was $54.41. These credits help offset the annual fees I pay for the credit cards.
btw, see below how I actually made a little profit on getting these speakers!
On this travel hacking blog, SEO traffic was up from 4210 in May to 4890 in June. Also hit a new all-time high with 213 visits (from Google) on June 26.
I published one new blog posts and updated several existing posts:
- Best Drinks at All Inclusive Resorts
- Complete Guide to Hyatt All Inclusive Resorts
- Nassau on a Budget
- Nassau Airport Guide
We’re a week into July and our points balances are:
- Chase Points: 427,156 (worth about 3.9 cents each)
- Amex Points: 443,694 (worth about 1.6 cents each)
- Hyatt Points: 270 (worth about 3.9 cents each)
- Southwest Points: 3603 (worth about 1.5 cents each)
- AA Points: 31,847 (worth about 1.7 cents each)
Based on how much value we’ve gotten from these points in the past, those points should be worth about $24,363 of free travel to us.
While we didn’t open any new credit cards in June, we’re working on the minimum spend to earn a 90k welcome bonus from Amex.
Other than that, most of the points we earned last month were on normal expenses like:
- KROGER, $83.28 earned 249 Chase points
- MCNAMARA’S IRISH PUB, $162.52 earned 487 Chase points
One interesting thing was that the (almost) free Bose speakers earned 7,188 Amex points which is worth about $108 to me. On the day that I placed the order, Rakuten had an increased offer of either 10% back or 10 Amex points per $1 at Dell.
If you’re not already getting free cash back at Rakuten, click on my Rakuten Refer-A-Friend link and we’ll both get some free cash when you use them!
Kroger Fuel Points
We also earned about 2000 Kroger Fuel Points in June. These points save us about 1.5 cents each on gas so that’s a total of $30 in gas savings.
Everyone Gets To Travel
Last month, 3 friends reached out for my advice and got new credit cards through our referral links:
- A fraternity brother of mine signed up for a Chase Sapphire Reserve®. He’s saving up points to earn a free 4 night stay at Zuzu’s favorite all inclusive resort: Secrets Maroma Beach.
- A work friend wants to take their spouse on a free trip next year. They signed up for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card to start earning transferrable points.
- Some close friends are going to Punta Cana with us on points. To start earning points to make this a free trip, they signed up for the Chase Sapphire Reserve®.
If you’ve got a business or even a side hustle, there’s a limited time offer on the Chase Ink Business Preferred® Card in July (btw, I don’t know when it will end). It’s got a whopping 100,000 point welcome bonus and the minimum spend is greatly reduced to only $8,000 vs the normal $15k minimum.
Since we transfer most of our Chase points to Hyatt, 100k Hyatt points are worth close to $4,000 in free travel to us. So I may apply for this business card in July.
Like I said, if you’ve got a small business, this is a great offer. And if you’re interested, I’d appreciate you applying through my referral link: Chase Ink Business Card.
And if you’re in the SEO and digital marketing world like I am, you should know that I think this is the best credit card for Google Ads and Facebook ads.
How Can We Help You Travel?
If you want to start traveling on points and miles, I’d love to help you just like I helped our 3 friends. I don’t charge to help you.
If you decide to apply for a card, I’d appreciate it if you use our referral links.
Just drop us a note on the Contact Us page and we’ll come up with a free custom plan for how You Get To Travel!
Or, you can download our free eBook: Ultimate Guide to Free Luxury Travel!