It’s not often that I update specifically on the miles/points I’ve earned in a week, but I’ve made some dumb moves this week and thought maybe my experience could stop you from making the same mistakes (or at the very least, make you feel better about yourself).
Mistake #1: Waiting a Year to Get Around to Doing Something with my Wyndham Points
I bought Wyndham points a full year ago when they were at bargain-basement prices. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but frankly they were left sitting in my account for months while I was deciding what to do with them. I could’ve saved that cash and I would have still been okay burning the miles I had acquired – for free – through other methods. But what’s done is done, and I finally transferred 30K Wyndham points to 12K US Airways miles and will receive a 6K bonus in a few weeks. I think most will say that the $99 I originally spent to eventually buy 18,000 Dividend Miles is a great price, but I think I just got lucky that my Wyndham points were still relatively valuable by the time I went to transfer them given their track record of making changes without a grace period.
Mistake #2: Transferring Wyndham Points to US Airlines Miles
My first mistake wasn’t the end of the world, but it does get worse. When I went to make the transfer, I accidentally copied in Mike’s Dividend Miles number instead of my own. It’s not that I don’t mind spreading the wealth, but even with the bonus he’ll still only be at 24,120 miles which is enough for absolutely nothing. Now I’ll waste time trying to earn those additional 880 miles to get him to a domestic ticket or sit around with unusable points for another year until US/AA merge and he can combine mileage accounts. A wasteful move, on my part, although maybe it’s useful to someone to know it’s possible to transfer Wyndham points to someone else’s airline account. Check all account numbers before hitting submit.
Mistake #3: Guilting Myself into Staying with Marriott
I spent one night at a Courtyard Marriott recently and should be content that I got a decent price. Instead, I am stupidly stressing out over the fact that I only need one more stay by April 30 to earn a Megabonus free night certificate, which I don’t even need. I do have travel plans for the remaining two weekends in April, but a Marriott-family hotel isn’t convenient for either scenario. The financially best option is to cancel one night at the FTU host hotel and stay at a nearby Marriott instead but the most convenient option is to just forfeit my Megabonus certificate.
Mistake #4: Planning Europe in July
I normally travel in shoulder seasons, but the way my life overlaps with my sister’s schedule limits us to traveling in July. I can’t remember the last time I took a “big” trip in the summer, and now I remember why: summer airfare is expensive and award availability is slim-to-none considering my inflexible dates (story of my life). By the time this trip rolls around, I’ll already have visited ten different states in 2013, so I’m really favoring an international destination, and I’ve yet to see a fair fare that fits my criteria. Guess it’s time to pay up since paying too much is better than not traveling at all.
Hopefully the rest of you are having an easier time with miles and points this week!
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