Airline Travel Hacking, Frequent Flyer Miles, & Extreme Flying

92772ff5353c89d9bd10f8e334161e16?s=47 Ben Hughes
April 17, 2014
700

Airline Travel Hacking, Frequent Flyer Miles, & Extreme Flying

My BarCampRochester presentation on some of the techniques travel hackers use to get incredible travel experiences for cheap.

92772ff5353c89d9bd10f8e334161e16?s=128

Ben Hughes

April 17, 2014
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Transcript

  1. T R AV E L H A C K I

    N G : 
 
 A I R L I N E S B E N H U G H E S | @ R U B I E T Y | H T T P : / / F L I G H T L E V E R A G E . C O M
  2. 1 . A I R FA R E P E

    R U N I T D I S TA N C E VA R I E S W I D E LY ! 2 . M I L E S E A R N E D ( M O S T LY ) = M I L E S F L O W N 
 3 . A I R L I N E R U L E S H AV E L O O P H O L E S
  3. F I N D I N G C H E

    A P A I R FA R E
  4. None
  5. None
  6. None
  7. None
  8. P H L T O P E K : $

    4 4 8 ( 2 . 5 C P M )
  9. L A T O T O K Y O :

    $ 4 4 5 ( 2 . 7 C P M )
  10. H I D D E N C I T Y

    T I C K E T I N G
  11. H I D D E N C I T Y

    T I C K E T I N G
  12. V O L U N TA RY D E N

    I E D B O A R D I N G ( V D B )
  13. F R E Q U E N T F LY

    E R M I L E S
  14. M I L E S C A N B E

    
 A C C R U E D T O A N D R E D E E M E D O N 
 A N Y O T H E R A I R L I N E I N T H E A L L I A N C E !
  15. A D VA N TA G E S O F

    U S I N G M I L E S • Last-Minute Travel (Funerals, Random Trips, Binds) • Lower Cancelation Fees, Free for Top Elites • Flexible Routing Rules • Stopovers & Open Jaws • Premium Cabins
  16. I N T E R N AT I O N

    A L 
 L I E - F L AT 
 B U S I N E S S C L A S S
  17. None
  18. None
  19. I N T E R N AT I O N

    A L 
 F I R S T C L A S S
  20. None
  21. None
  22. None
  23. D I S A D VA N TA G E

    S O F U S I N G M I L E S • Limited Award Availability - Need to be flexible! • Mile currencies inflate faster than the US dollar • Airlines can change the rules at any time
  24. AWA R D C H A RT H A C

    K S & C O M PA R AT I V E A D VA N TA G E
  25. B R I T I S H A I R

    WAY S < 6 5 0 M I : 4 , 5 0 0 AV I O S • SAN-LAX: $$$
 Avios: 4,500 (~$65) • JFK-YYZ: $$$
 Avios: 4,500 (~$65) • LHR-CDG: $$$
 Avios: 4,500 (~$65) + ~$20 Taxes • Lots of places < 650 mi from AA hubs ORD, DFW, MIA • US Airways now in OneWorld! Add PHL, PHX, CLT
  26. A A O F F - P E A K

    T O E U R O P E : 2 0 K
  27. P H L - D U B - P H

    L : 
 1 0 0 K U S A I R WAY S M I L E S I N B U S I N E S S
  28. M E X - F R A - Z R

    H , 
 Z R H - B K K - C G K , 
 C G K - T P E - L A X 
 L A X - P H X - M E X L U F T H A N S A 7 4 7 - 8 U P P E R D E C K S W I S S A 3 4 0 B U S I N E S S T H A I 7 7 7 B U S I N E S S E VA 7 7 7 B U S I N E S S
  29. S F O - N R T- S F O

    : 
 2 2 0 K U N I T E D M I L E S I N A N A F I R S T
  30. Y V R - M U C - F R

    A , 
 F R A - B K K - H K G , B K K - H N D , 
 N R T- I C N - J F K L U F T H A N S A A 3 3 0 F I R S T T H A I A 3 8 0 F I R S T T H A I 7 4 7 F I R S T ( T W I C E ) A S I A N A 7 4 7 F I R S T A S I A N A 7 7 7 P R I VAT E S U I T E
  31. M I L E A G E R U N

    N I N G “ I T ’ S A B O U T T H E J O U R N E Y, N O T T H E D E S T I N AT I O N ” • Flights for sole purpose of earning miles & elite status • Destination & dates irrelevant • Hoping around airports, going nowhere
  32. B E N E F I T S G I

    V E N O N M I L E S F L O W N , N O T P R I C E PA I D
  33. E L I T E S TAT U S

  34. A A 
 E X E C U T I

    V E P L AT I N U M • 100% Bonus on Redeemable Miles • Priority Everything • International First Class Lounges • 8 Systemwide Business Class Upgrade Certificates
  35. M I N ( C P M )

  36. I TA M AT R I X

  37. S H A N G H A I F O

    R D I N N E R : 
 L A X - B N A - O R D - P V G - O R D - M I A - L A X ( 1 9 , 8 5 9 M I ) 
 F O R $ 7 4 1 . 1 0 ( 3 . 7 3 C P M )
  38. P H I L A D E L P H

    I A F O R L U N C H ( C H E E S E S T E A K ) : 
 S A N - E W R - Z F V- E W R - S A N ( 5 , 3 5 0 M I ) 
 F O R $ 1 4 0 . 7 0 ( 2 . 6 3 C P M )
  39. “ N E T C O S T ” A

    P P R O A C H T O A I R FA R E $160 Transcontinental (~7,000 mi with indirect routing) 100% Mile Bonus with United 1K: 14,000 mi earned 14,000mi X ($0.017 / mi) = $238 in Mile Value Net Cost = Paid ($160) - Mile Value ($238) Net Cost = Negative $78
  40. S A M E - D AY C H A

    N G E S • Route further out of the way for more miles • Monitor F cabin loads for upgrade optimization • Increase voluntary denied boarding changes • Deliberate book days off with cheaper fares, intend to change to day before/after
  41. F L AT- O U T B U Y I

    N G M I L E S • US Airways Buy Miles Promo (1.9 cents) • US Airways Share Miles Promo (1.1 cents) • American Buy Miles Promos • Buy Transferrable Currencies & Transfer 
 (Starwood Buy Miles Promos) • United Mileage Multiplier when Flying
  42. R O U N D - T H E -

    W O R L D 
 $ 9 9 0 I N L I E - F L AT B U S I N E S S C L A S S !
  43. L O U N G E A C C E

    S S H A C K S
  44. A C C E S S H O W ?

    • Membership ($$$) • International flights in premium cabins • International flights with elite status • “Club” or “Executive” CCs (high annual fee) • Amex Platinum (American, Delta, US Airways)
  45. A M E X P L AT R E F

    U N D A B L E T I C K E T S
  46. B U T… T H E T I M E

    S A R E C H A N G I N G • Award Chart Devaluations • Minimum Spend Requirements for Elite Status • Move to Fully Revenue-Based Mile Earning (Delta) • American Airlines / US Airways Merger Uncertainty
  47. T H A N K S ! B E N

    H U G H E S | @ R U B I E T Y H T T P : / / T R A V E L . B E N H U G H E S . N A M E | H T T P : / / F L I G H T L E V E R A G E . C O M • FlyerTalk, MilePoint • One Mile at a Time • View from the Wing • The Points Guy • MileValue • HackMyTrip.com