It’s the beginning of May which means that summer vacation season is just getting started. Growing up, I remember looking forward to our family vacation every summer as it usually meant going somewhere fun. Today, as a father of three, summer vacations are still fun but they are not all fun. Before the big trip (or sometimes not so big trip) I have to find a way to skimp on costs without sacrificing the fun. While vacations can vary greatly in price, I have found a few ways to have a memorable vacation without busting my budget.
Those of you who read my free money tips newsletter (which I suggest you do), know that I am about to take a trip to Israel. I spent the last few days working on lodging for the trip, and I want to share a few tips to save money on hotels when traveling.
Today I am going to move away from the broader tips I usually provide and share with you something that I really do myself. In the past, I have shared posts on traveling cheap or free by getting credit card points and miles. Today, I am going to share one card that I carry in my wallet every day, the Starwood Preferred Guest from American Express.
If you regularly read travel hacking blogs, you have probably heard the term “churn” used quite a bit. For the uninitiated, a churn is a strategy used to sign up for new credit cards to maximize signup and bonus offers to rack up a huge number of frequent flyer miles and travel points quickly.
What a year. Memories were made, countries were visited, relationships were made, businesses were started. 2012 was possibly the busiest year of my life. I had a lot going on and I am proud of what has happened. Here are some highlights from the blog and elsewhere.
A few months back, I got a letter in the mail from AAA reminding me that it is time to renew my membership. I have been a AAA member since 2007. My car broke down and I needed a tow. I signed up and got a tow in the same call. When it was time to renew, I had to think hard about whether or not it was worth the annual $57 cost.
About four years ago I made the transition from being a casual earner of frequent flier miles to becoming a serious mileage junkie. How serious am I? I attend conferences devoted to the subject and make a nice living writing about loyalty travel programs and credit cards. But having earned millions of points and miles through some ingenious methods, I reached an inescapable conclusion that will sound very familiar to personal finance enthusiasts: Spending points and miles wisely is at least as important as finding ways to earn them.
Last week, I had the pleasure of crossing the Caribbean on a cruise ship. My experience on the Carnival Victory was fun, minus some sea sickness, but it opened my eyes to the excesses of our society and how much we do “just because it is free.”
This is a guest post from Karen Cordaway
You already have your luggage, 3 oz. bottles for toiletries and your identification handy before your trip but you’re not as organized as you’d like to be when flying. You may think you don’t have time but don’t get discouraged yet. Your packing methods may be to blame. If you ignore them, you may waste your precious time and money.
A couple weeks ago, I was hanging out with 400 fellow finance bloggers discussing ways to make our sites better and more useful for all of you, our readers. I had the pleasure of planning and speaking at Ignite FinCon, one of our big social events. This was my third Ignite speaking engagement, and I am excited to bring you the video of my big night on stage.
This weekend, I am taking my girlfriend up to the mountains for a quick weekend getaway. I am excited to get out of the city for a couple of days and enjoy everything a fall trip to the Rockies has to offer. Before I made the reservations, however, I made sure to tally up the costs of a weekend away.