In my earlier post on Daily Getaways Return, I mentioned about the offers for the first 2 weeks of this sale. There are still few of those deals available specifically The Diamond Resort Stay, CityPass, IHG Points and Wyndham Rewards points. Although they are not great deals, they might be useful for someone's particular travel or stay scenario. Daily Getaways has announced the remaining deals for next 3 weeks and there are few hotels points and Car rental deals I want to highlight in this post. The deal which most traveler are interested would be the Hyatt Stay Deal. Let me list down these here:
Note - None of the credit card links in the post earns me any revenue. Thanks for reading!
If you ever thought about getting the retroactive miles/points credit for any of your past trip, the first most important thing you need is the "boarding pass". Most of the time we do not care about keeping the boarding pass once we board the aircraft. But most often you could still get those miles for your air travel if you have your boarding pass. One of the best way is to take a "picture" of the boarding pass so that you still have proof of boarding the aircraft in case you need it at a later date. In fact sometimes the airlines miles/points might not post even though you might have entered your Frequent Flyer (FF) number. In such situations as well you might need to have the boarding pass from the trip to email/fax the customer support.
The other important aspect of air travel is to know what "fare bucket" your travel was booked into. For commoners all we know are the "classes" such as Economy, Business and First. But there are many fare buckets from which your ticket might originate and those determine how much "miles credit" you get for your trip. Fare bucket information is usually displayed on your itinerary right beside the the "class" information. This is important to know as it would "save you hassle" of contacting the airlines if you know before hand (by looking at airlines website) if your "fare bucket" earns any miles or not.
So, once you have above two pieces of information and provided the airline you flew allows retroactive miles credit (which most airlines do), you can earn the miles for the trip you took in the past. Ideally airlines have partners or belong to alliance so you could potentially credit your miles to those partners or alliance airline provided you enter that airline Frequent Flyer number in your reservation (This could be done online or by calling the airline you are flying). But, when you do not enter this info before taking your flight and would be doing retroactive credit majority of airlines will only allow you to credit the miles to their "own frequent flyer program".
Below is the information regarding the time frame you can get retroactive credit for your flights. Before you "contact the airlines", you would need to create the Frequent Flyer account in their program if you do not have one. I have listed only few airlines here, but you should be able to easily look up this information on the airlines website:
So the next time you travel, make sure you enter your Frequent Flyer number in your reservation record (can be done after booking your reservation) and always "keep your boarding pass" to ensure "airline mileage credit".
Over the recent times technological innovation and community sharing has spurred lot of companies looking to provide same service as traditional companies. One area is "Car Rental".services. The traditional model of car rental is to rent from the old car rental companies or their counterparts such as Hertz, Avis and Alamo, but there are new start-ups which are trying to give established players run for their money by using the concept of community sharing. Couple of companies in this space I want to bring your attention to are:
RelayRides and GetAround both use the community sharing concept. Below are few details which will help you determine if they are better options for you than the traditional car rental companies.
RelayRides allows you to specify the destination (could be an airport) and will show available cars and pricing options for your need. The great thing about RelayRides is since it is based on community sharing you can rent a SUV or Premium Car at reasonable cost compared to the traditional car-rental companies. For e.g. Renting an SUV from San Jose Airport (SJC) from 08/01 to 08/03 gives quite a reasonable rate of $44/day (excluding taxes/fees and insurance) as shown below.
The best part is you could customize the search based on various factors such as Price, Mileage limit, Vehicle Type, Features etc, which is contrary to Traditional car-rental companies where you selection is just limited to "Vehicle Type and Price". There is no joining or annual fees as well as there are options of what kind of insurance you want and based on your comfort you could take either a "basic package" or a "premium package". The only "con" I can think of is that you need to be "approved" by RelayRides before you can rent-a-car from them. What it means is that you need to be registered with Driving License and Credit Card Details and they verify your Driving Record before you can take your rental. But given the price advantage and selection based on your situation it could be a great buy-in.
The other side of RelayRides is that you can get "free airport parking" (which is currently available only at San Francisco Airport) by listing your car for rental through RelayRides (Of-course you would not earn anything from that rental). An alternative option to consider if you are not going to just park your car at the airport.This also helps them provide rentals directly from airport. If you wish to know which airports have rentals available you can look that up here.
GetAround is another "community sharing" car rental service which functions similar to RelayRides. The basic premises are same as RelayRides such as "no joining or annual fees" as well as approval needed before you take your first rental. The difference is that full-coverage as well as 24/7 roadside assistance is included in the price quote. The con is that number of selection criteria is rather limited. Taking the same example as RelayRides for Renting an SUV from San Jose Airport (SJC) from 08/01 to 08/03 gives a rate ranging from $100 to $140 (including insurance) as shown below:
As you can see from above the options are limited compared to RelayRides but the pricing seems to be at par once you consider that insurance cost is included for GetAround. Similar to RelayRides you could list your idle car for rental and earn an extra income from GetAround.
Both RelayRides and GetAround has sign-up or referral promo's all the time from which you can get $10 to $25 for your first rental. So, next time you plan to rent-a-car, you would want to consider these new "community sharing" car companies for your need!
Its been a while since I have written about British Airways Executive Club, but with the addition of three major airlines (US Airways, TAM and Srilankan Airlines) to Oneworld Alliance its time to visit this useful miles currency once again. British Airways Avios are best suited for short distance direct flights from Point A to Point B. You could refer to my old post to understand the value of British Airways Avios but below is the award chart to get you started.
The above chart indicates the number of Avios required for different class of service for range of one-way distance in miles (Note that these miles are per segment/sector, so if you have 2 stops along the route each segment/sector will be priced separately). As you see from above for shorter distances the Avios required are low and grows to huge amount when the distance increases. One of the best redemption of Avios without fuel surcharges are in the United States but let's explore the value of Avios redemption in Asia. In this article i will focus on flights from Hong Kong as Cathay Pacific is the major Oneworld airline in this region.
Hong Kong (HKG) -- BKK (Bangkok) on Cathay Pacific:
One way flight in Economy from "HKG-BKK costs 7500 Avios + ~$40" while "One way flight from BKK-HKG costs 7500 Avios + ~$46". The same flight in revenue would cost anywhere from $140 to $500. So, if the cost of flight is high there is no better option then redeeming British Airways Avios.
Hong Kong (HKG) to Singapore (SIN) on Cathay Pacific:
The distance between Hong Kong and Singapore is ~1600 miles which is roughly 4 hours flight. Using the British Airways Avios HKG-SIN would cost "10,000 Avios + $40 in Economy" or "20,000 Avios + $40 in Business". The same flight on revenue ticket would cost anywhere from $250 to $700.
Hong Kong (HKG) to Colombo (CMB) on SriLankan Airlines:
If you have thought of visiting Maldives you could easily get there with short hop from Colombo. Usually the flight on "Cathay Pacific from HKG-CMB would cost 12,500 miles + $134 in Economy" but the same flight on "SriLankan Airlines from HKG-CMB costs 12,500 miles + $15 in Economy".
Maldives (MLE) to Hong Kong (HKG) on SriLankan Airlines:
How about going back from Maldives? Usually the flight on "Cathay Pacific from MLE-HKG would cost you 12,500 miles + $128 in Economy" but the same flight on "SriLankan Airlines from MLE-HKG costs 17,000 miles + $18 in Economy".
There are similar opportunities to be had around Asia. It's just required a little more leg work, but of-course the benefits in cost savings by using British Airways Avios is great. Hope this helps you to plan some of those awesome trips which otherwise seemed expensive
The Daily Getaways has returned and will be starting on May 19th, 2014. It used to have quite a few lucrative deals, but seems due to the seasons of devaluation it has lost its sheen. The first and second week of deals are announced and it does not sound interesting.
Week 0 -- May 19th to May 23rd:
Week 1 -- May 26th to May 30th:
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