Our first “Complete Guide” for curious frequent flyers

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There’s a reason why we started this hobby with a giant dry-erase board covered with lists and notes scribbled all over it, propped against the bedroom wall.

This hobby is a complex world of credit cards, frequent flyer miles and bank points and hotel points and airline alliances and…it goes on and on.  It’s pretty confusing for anyone starting out.  Or even for someone fairly used to the miles and points world, it can still be easy to miss details.

We do what we can with blog posts but Drew and I decided to try something new to add to the blog posts.  We’ve put together our first “Complete Guide.”  This is a guide that explains, as thoroughly as we can, a few of the concepts necessary to start advancing in this hobby.

We call it The Complete Guide to Miles Earning with Credit Cards.

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What you’ll find in the guide:

> A look at the difference between the currencies of this hobby, much like my post on the subject.

> A look into bank points and how they can be best used for travel

> How point transfers work and which transfers we recommend

> What fuel surcharges are and how to avoid them.  A more in depth version of what you might find in this post.

> How to avoid fuel surcharges with each alliance.

How to access the guide:

We’re giving this guide away to newsletter subscribers, but we’ve made sure it’s available to anyone just now signing up for the newsletter too.  If it’s something you want to benefit from, sign up here!.

Complete Guide to Miles Earning with Credit Cards 

Receive our Guide free…and our newsletter with our best unpublished and original content.

Share your thoughts:

If you’ve read the guide already, give us your thoughts!  Comment on this post and let us know.  Is it helpful?  Is it confusing?  Does it demonstrate a sparklingly superior knowledge of graphic design? (Just kidding.)

You get the point.  We want to know what you’re thinking!

8 Comments on “Our first “Complete Guide” for curious frequent flyers

  1. Super excited for this guide! It comes at a perfect time as I’ve been feeling particularly overwhelmed by learning all these details. Funny you should mention a board for scribbling notes as I’ve had to make room in my tiny NYC apt just for this purpose!

  2. Hi Carrie,
    I just came across your and Drew’s blogs a few days ago and have become so interested in your travels and current lifestyle, pretty awestruck. I travel weekly in the US for work. So now I’m going to try picking up the miles hobby (I always just book Marriott) and hopefully will have a chance for some international travel adventures of my own! Thanks for the great blog, beginner’s guide and inspiration to find new adventures!

    • Wow thanks so much for the kind words! And I’m glad you’re getting into the hobby!
      Hope you continue to enjoy!

  3. Hi Carrie,
    My question is related to another article I was reading and suddenly I lost it, so pardon me asking about a different topic…. I like to travel a lot but with my husband but it does get expensive. How do we get invited to the Timeshare presentations and get to stay for free at hotels or pay very little to stay there? Can you please give me some suggestions, thanks so much!

    • Hi Vannesa!
      Most of what we confront here at Freakin Flyers involves the miles & points strategy for travel. For instance if you have a good credit score, you can apply for a variety of cards that will not only give you points to redeem for free hotel stays, but frequent flyer miles to redeem for free flights too. If you’re hesitant to sign up for the newsletter but are interested in the Complete Guide (which covers the topics I’ve just introduced) I’ll be happy to send the link for the guide via email.

      As for information on timeshare presentations, we have not explored this option as much as many others have, though my husband does have a post about it here: http://travelisfree.com/2013/05/16/free-travel-from-timeshare-presentations/

  4. Hi Carrie,
    I have been looking at your and Drew’s websites and I am excited at the possibilities. I earn a decent income and have a good credit score but I am also working to same as much money as possible to achieve an early financial independence. So my question is, if I apply for multiple credit cards and get all of them, how do I spend enough money on all of them to meet the minimum requirements to get all of the awards? I have read about the currency purchase and exchange of the past but I haven’t come across anything that still works now. Thanks in advance for your time.


    • Well, there’s always one “trick” that still works pretty consistently. Basically you need to use your credit card to buy a Debit Visa Giftcard, (a visa gift card that says “debit” on it, and allows for the use of a PIN,) then use that Visa Debit card to buy a money order, then deposit that money order in a bank account. HOWEVER, a few things to note: You can’t buy just any gift card- you want to get a debit gift card- one that will function like a debit card and has a PIN capability. We usually get Debit Visa Giftcards, though you could also go to a Simon Mall and get their gift cards. Then, it’s important to know that some banks get freaked out when they see a large volume of money order deposits. So, you may not want to use your main bank account. Maybe a secondary, smaller bank account. (And definitely not Chase bank.)

      Hope that helps!

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