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My Favorite Hotel Card Now Has a 30,000 Point Bonus—And You Can Earn Two of Them

Link: New 30,000 Point Signup Bonus (Personal Card)

Link: New 30,000 Point Signup Bonus (Business Card)

16940311578_06494f51fb_z I've been using the Starwood Preferred Guest card from American Express for more than eight years. For the first couple of years, in fact, it was the only mileage-earning card I had. Back then, there was no sign-up bonus. It was simply a great card, especially due to its ability to earn a 20% bonus on all earned points when transferring to most major airline programs.

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Limited Time: New 80,000 Points Signup Bonus for Marriott Card

Link: 80,000 Points for Marriott Card

While I was on blog hiatus and then hosting WDS, a big new offer landed that I haven't had a chance to write about. Fortunately, there's still time!

Marriott isn’t my favorite hotel program (that would be Starwood and Hyatt), but this new offer is worth a look for the free nights you’ll earn right away. They used to provide 50,000 points upon signup, but for a limited time—we don’t know for how long—you can earn 30,000 additional points for a total of 80,000.

80,000 points can put you in one of their nicer hotels or resorts worldwide for up to two nights. Marriott partners with Ritz Carlton, where awards can also be booked.

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Man Takes More than 1,000 flights Without Leaving the Airport

For more than twenty years, he flew to a different European city — every Wednesday. He never missed a week. Mr Mul (born in 1932) made more than 1,000 flights over a period of 20 years.

Travel is what you make it. In the early days of my travel quest to visit every country, I would get defensive when people asked why I only stayed in most countries for a relatively brief period of time. Unlike this guy, I left the airport and usually spent several days in a place—but still, I totally get why someone would love flying for the sake of flying.

It was all about an experience, about losing himself in the window seat and venturing to a different place. No matter that the place was "air world." Some of us like air world just fine.

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Ending Soon: Earn $200 or 20,000 Points with No-Fee Offer Before June 24

Link: Double Signup Bonus for Chase Freedom

While I’ve been writing a book and preparing to welcome a few people to town, I’ve been greatly neglectful in mentioning several great travel offers as of late.

At any rate, there’s still time for this one: for the next few days, you can earn TWICE the usual signup bonus for one of the best no-fee offers out there, the Chase Freedom card.

Technically, it’s described as $200 cash back after a low $500 minimum spend, and you can certainly get the card and put $200 in your pocket. There’s no annual fee, ever.

However, the better use of the card for many people is to convert the $200 into 20,000 Ultimate Rewards points. Those points can then be used to transfer to any number of airline and hotel partners directly, and in many cases you’ll get a much better valuation than $200.

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Top 5 Credit Card Signup Bonuses for Miles and Points: June 2015

Every year I earn well over one million Frequent Flyer miles and points. About 250,000 of them come through actual travel, and the rest come through travel hacking: the art of seeing the world on a budget.

One of the easiest ways to earn a lot of miles all at once is through credit card signup bonuses. This post contains the best current card offers as of Friday, June 5th. If getting every card from this post, you'd earn 215,000 points or miles. Happy travels!

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“Make Your Dream Trip a Reality”: Live Wrap-Up Tomorrow at 9am

Link: Live Broadcast (Friday at 9am Pacific)

Hey everyone! After nearly thirty lessons in our #DreamTrip course, we're going back to Seattle tomorrow for a live finale and our final lesson.

You can join Stephanie Zito, myself, and a few audience members live at 9am PDT Friday morning and ask questions or tell us about your own Dream Trip.

This has been quite the journey with many of you. And if you haven't seen any of the course before now, don't worry—we'll be recapping key points and telling you how to catch up.

Week6.039

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Starwood Card Makes It Easier to Earn 25,000 Point Bonus

Link: Starwood Preferred Guest (Personal)
Link: Starwood Preferred Guest (Business)

Years before I became a full-time traveler and learned to use travel hacking to pay my way around the world, I had only a couple of credit cards. One of those cards was the Starwood Preferred Guest by American Express, and I used it religiously. Years later, I have many other cards, but I continue to use this one every day.

The card just made a big update to make it easier for people to earn the initial signup bonus of 25,000 points. You used to earn some of the points upon signup and the rest after completing a minimum spend. Now, you'll earn the entire bonus upon spending $3,000 in the first three months of having the card.

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“Make Your Dream Trip a Reality”: Week 5 Recap (Upgrade Your Dream Trip)

Week5.070 copy Every day for six weeks, we’re teaching people how to “Make Their Dream Trip a Reality.” You can watch each lesson for free on the day it’s broadcast, or you can purchase the whole course and have access anytime.

This was our fifth week (already?!) with the in-studio audience and the thousands of people who participated online. We've come so far! And we’ll be back again after the weekend for our last week where we'll bring it all together.

For the five daily lessons this week, we focused on helping people strategically use the miles they earned. Here's what we covered:

  • The Best Hidden Redemptions
  • The Secret World of Airline Lounges
  • Airline Status and Upgrades
  • On the Ground
  • More Ways to Use Your Points and Miles

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“Make Your Dream Trip a Reality”: Week 4 Recap (Book Your Hotel)

Week4.029 copy Every day for six weeks, we’re teaching people how to “Make Their Dream Trip a Reality.” You can watch each lesson for free on the day it’s broadcast, or you can purchase the whole course and have access anytime.

This was our fourth week with the in-studio audience and the thousands of people who participated online.

Everyone made lots of progress, and we’ll be back again after the weekend with much more.

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Homeward: Notes from TG 910, Bangkok-London

Greetings from the skies over Helsinki, on-board a well-aged Thai Airways 747 that has two hours remaining in its eleven-hour flight. Last night was Singapore, then a quick hop to Bangkok, and then this uneventful long-haul as I’m nearing London’s Heathrow airport.

I’ve felt strange for much of the trip. It’s been a lot of fun, no doubt, and I’m really glad I went. A trip like this, with four major cities in a week, all separated by 8-13 hours of flying time to each city, reinforces the benefits and challenges of the peripatetic nature of my life. There’s always something coming and going. There’s always a project wrapping and another one (or five) to tackle next.

What's the goal of life? Maybe it’s this: to live the life we’ve been given, to be kind to others, to do things that make us happy, and to give back (or whatever it’s called) as much as possible.

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“Make Your Dream Trip a Reality”: Week 3 Recap (Book Your Flight)

Every day for six weeks, we’re teaching people how to “Make Their Dream Trip a Reality.” You can watch each lesson for free on the day it’s broadcast, or you can purchase the whole course and have access anytime.

This was our third week with the in-studio audience and the thousands of people who participated online.

Everyone made lots of progress, and we’ll be back again after the weekend with much more.

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You Don’t Have to Be Uncomfortable to Have an Authentic Travel Experience

When I went to Burma several years ago I stayed in a nice guest house for about $35 a night. The rate included free Wifi and a large banana pancake for breakfast. Mmmmmm.

After I came home, I talked with someone who had also been there. "How much did you pay?" he asked.

"Oh... about $30-40 a night," I said. I may also have mentioned the delicious banana pancake. Mmmmmm.

"That’s crazy!" He said. "You got ripped off... there are places you can stay for just $10 or less."

I didn’t know how to respond. Was I “ripped off?” Well, I guess I could have paid less... but I was happy with the experience, so for me the rate was a great value.

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“Make Your Dream Trip a Reality”: Week 2 Recap (Earning Points & Miles)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Every day for six weeks, we’re teaching people how to “Make Their Dream Trip a Reality.” You can watch each lesson for free on the day it’s broadcast, or you can purchase the whole course and have access anytime.

This was our second week with our in-studio audience and the thousands of people who participated online.

Everyone made lots of progress, and we’ll be back again after the weekend with much more.

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Top 5 Credit Card Signup Bonuses for Miles and Points: May 2015

Every year I earn well over one million Frequent Flyer miles and points. About 250,000 of them come through actual travel, and the rest come through travel hacking: the art of seeing the world on a budget.

One of the easiest ways to earn a lot of miles all at once is through credit card signup bonuses. This post contains the best current card offers as of Tuesday, May 5th. If getting every card from this post, you'd earn 215,000 points or miles. Happy travels!

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