Travel Hackers of the World, Unite


Greetings, friends and readers. As promised, today is the initial launch of my new Travel Hacking Cartel.

The goal of the project is to democratize free and low-cost travel for thousands of our members all over the world.

–> You can learn more or sign up here for the special preboarding phase here


How It Works

We’re welcoming an initial 1,000 members during the preboarding phase. In addition to being extra-special, these inaugural members will get access to a live webinar I’ll produce next month on “8 Ways to Travel for Free in 2011.”

Cartel membership is global; some things are easier in the U.S., but you can still earn miles and redeem them for great awards wherever you live. Travel hacking does not require you to get a lot of credit cards. There are three tiers to membership, and all of them include a 14-day $1 trial.

After the first 1,000 people join the cartel, the next group won’t get the live webinar, but we’ll give them access to the webinar recording afterwards as long as they join before February 1st. We’ll also be supporting our members in helping them make referrals to their own circle of friends. (All cartel members will be able to earn 500 Frequent Flyer Miles for referring aspiring travel hackers.)

A Few Notes on the Launch

Travel hacking isn’t for everyone. We’ve produced what we call the “World’s Greatest Guarantee,” where all our members can earn enough miles for one plane ticket every quarter, regardless of where they live.

This requires a bit of work on our members’ part—not a lot, but at least 30 minutes a month. If you’re not up for that, no worries, but this project won’t help you. Also, if you prefer to pay full price when traveling, don’t bother with the cartel. We focus exclusively on giving the advantage to the traveler instead of the travel companies.

In addition to signing up directly, you can also support one of our 45 (carefully-selected) affiliate partners who are promoting this offer today. To do that, just click on one of their links from various reviews and endorsements all over the internet, and follow the process from there.

Finally, we’ve been building this project for months, and everything for the site is completely custom. We’re expecting a massive wave of travel hackers joining up for the preboarding phase today—so if the site is down when you click, or if something doesn’t work the way it should, try again in a couple of hours.

I greatly appreciate Reese, Nicky, and Sean helping to get this up and running after months of development. And I also appreciate you for reading AONC, whether you care about travel hacking or not.

Happy cartel preboarding day! I’ll be manning the fort from World Domination HQ in Portland. It’s a good thing I have a very large french press of Stumptown coffee …

–> Aspiring travel hackers, head over here!

Update: we reached the first 1,000 signups. Everyone else who joins up before February 1 will still have access to the webinar recording, just not the live one.


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  • Yay?! I’m super excited to be on board:) Kudos on this fantastic idea!

  • Mel says:

    Sounds excellent, I’m in! Looking forward to everything the Cartel has to offer!

  • Thomas (pyrxgl) says:

    Exciting. I hope I haven’t signed up 20 times already 🙂

  • Bethany says:

    I’m trying to sign up and I get to the info page, put in my info and credit card number, press submit and it takes me back to the same page. Help! I get no confirmation that my membership has gone through! Thanks.

  • Justin says:

    I was unable to sign up…anyone else have this problem? I completed the form and entered my information, and when I clicked “lets get started” the page just kept refreshing without any results…

    Am I missing something? Thanks.

  • Methinks my resignation to a year without travel shall be upended! Apprehended! Suspended!

  • Yay! So glad I got into the first 1,000!

  • Clark says:

    A me too on the multiple sign-ups, I keep hitting “Yes, let’s do this” and it keeps saying, “You’re almost done! Fill out this last form to create your Travel Hacking Cartel account.”… If I joined evertime I clicked, I may be preboarding by myself =0)

  • Chris says:

    Hey everyone! Happy Cartel day.

    @Bethany + Justin (and anyone else with this issue) —

    Long story short, I’m not sure. We had more than 200 members join in the first 8 minutes, but so far the site is still holding up OK. You can try using another card or making sure your billing address is correct. If you still have issues, hold tight and we’ll sort it out after the dust settles.

  • Susan says:

    Very Excited. I’ve clicked “Yes, Let’s Do This!” on the payment page lots of times because it keeps taking me back to that page – hope I just signed up once?!

  • Jeff says:

    Nice work Chris. Nicely packaged and presented – clearly some critical thought and market input has shaped this offering. Good luck with the launch!

  • Marcello says:

    Hello all, I also had problems signing up using internet exploder. I clicked sign up about 5 times and tried different cards. Finally tried it in mozilla firefox and it worked the first time. So maybe the browser is the problem? Anyway now that the membership is booked I’m looking forward to some hacking!

  • jen gaines says:

    Yay! Im in!
    If you have issues, check your Email, everyone. I thought I had not signed up as well, but it turns out that I did.
    So excited!

  • Erica says:

    Love this–I’ve signed up and I’m already trying to decide where I want to travel hack my way to first.

  • James Clark says:

    Greetings from Bangkok. Looks like a great program Chris – well done. I look forward to road testing it for us non US users.

  • Ward says:

    Very happy I managed to get in and signed up among the first 1,000. Looking forward to the information.

  • Beverly says:

    I’m having a problem too. Put in all info and the page just keeps returning. I don’t want to keep clicking on the Yes, let’s do this and get charged. Will somone let us know if our sign up was received?

  • Fiel says:

    I just signed up, pretty happy! Anyways, how do I know if I got int he first 1000? I highly doubt it though. I wasn’t at home when it was released haha.

  • Leon Partsi says:

    Hi All,
    For anyone who is stuck on the last page signing up for the cartel, it appears Google Chrome isn’t rendering the validation text of that sign-up page where you enter your billing information. As in, it’s finding something you entered is invalid but it won’t display the message explaining what it was. That’s why it kept bouncing me, and that stopped happening the second I used Firefox. I tested with IE8 and that worked too.
    Maybe you could give that a go. Good luck everyone!

  • Sage Russell says:

    Very cool Chris. I’m pleased to say that with the inspiration provided in the Frequent Flyer Master program, I have added 175,000 miles and a free Southwest ticket to my accounts in just 3 months. the THC looks to keep adding to that.

  • Laura says:

    yes, had problems too but now signed up fine.
    Fabulous idea, thanks Chris~

  • September says:

    @Marcello: thanks for sharing the Firefox tip. That did the trick!

  • Emily says:

    I got in after switching my card! YAY!!! So. Excited.

  • c says:

    this is probably a stupid questions.. but how do you know if you made it in the first 1,000 or not.?

  • Chris says:

    Not stupid at all – we’re almost at the first 1k right now. I’ll update the post when it happens. And to be clear, we’ll still take new members afterwards, they just don’t get the live webinar since we only have 1k seats for that.

  • I got in within 30 minutes of this launching. Loving it so far. Already used a few of the offers. Awesome offering Chris, Thank you so much, very glad to support you in this endeavor.

  • Gillian says:

    Will we receive an invoice for our payment? I have a welcome email but no invoice.


  • Chris says:

    Good question. As of right now, we’re just sending out the Welcome Message. I may update that to send an additional email as well; we just don’t want to send too many messages.

  • Sharat Kalluri says:

    Hi Chris,

    Congratulations on THC. I’m on board. Like James C – even I am curious on THC as a non US user.

    Got your AONC (courtesy and thanks to my dear friend who got it for me from US) and wish to complete the book ASAP.


    Sharat Kalluri
    Bangalore, India

  • Finally. Just signed up. I wish I weren’t busy working, so I could do my full exploration of the site right now.

  • Brooke says:

    Happy happy day, to be among the first 1000, and I’ve already gotten a FB friend excited about THC! (I hope more than one, but one has shared my link.) I’ll poke around the site later today as time permits. Thanks!

  • Contrarian says:

    Hey Chris – isn’t a cartel is an arrangement among competing firms where they agree to fix prices, marketing, and production to squeeze the end user consumer? That is the definition of the airlines. So if I have this right, you’ve formed a travel cartel to put the squeeze on the airline cartel? If that’s the plan, God bless you! 😉 Count me in!

    – Contrarian

  • Perfect timing Chris because airfares have sky-rocketed lately. Thanks for putting this program together.


  • Jocasta says:

    So excited to be part of this community. The site looks awesome Chris!! 🙂

  • Britta says:

    Hi Chris. This is so awesome. I can’t believe I’m in too. Let’s travel the world on miles finally. Very excited what you will have to offer. Btw, I’m very impressed on the package and marketing. Great job your doing there. Will tell the world about this! Btw, this is my first cartel I’m joining 😉

  • Norma Reyes says:

    I’m in! Chris I don’t know if I’m among the 1000 first members, how can I know?
    And I also have the same question about the invoice for our payment, not that I need it know but would be okay if you send it too.
    I hope this will rock my world too! Greetings from MX!

  • Chris,
    My readers are loving this amazing program! I’m floored by the response. Thank you for pooling all of your travel expertise and sharing it with the rest of us. Can’t wait to dive in to the Cartel.

  • Michael Max says:

    Woo hoo. I’m a member of the cartel!
    Never thought I would grow up to be a cartel member.
    It is good to have big aspirations!

  • Congratulations on the launch. Hope it goes well! I saw tweets about your interview, but got to the site too late to catch it. I hope they’ll put a recording up. I’d love to see it.

    Much success!

  • Tim Mooney says:

    So glad to have joined early on Day 1! THC is opening up new travel possibilities never before known to me. Thanks, Chris, for the impact you have already made with your work. I’ve been following AONC since September….read the book…attended the Portland book tour. Just now getting started interacting with your regular posts and plan to get more involved from now on. Carry on…I love it!

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