Will work for miles and/or points!

As some of you know, we are planning a big trip in December of this year.  Usually, the only big trips we all take are to my parents’ house, which is a 7-8 hour drive (that includes our frequent stops) and lodging at their house.  Because of the length of this trip, there will be hotel stays not only while we are there, but also on the way down and on the way back.

In order to maximize our fun whilst at the kingdom of the mouse, I am trying to think of everything I can to minimize the costs on the way down and back.  My first idea was to use my hotel points.  I have almost 12,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points accumulated.  Problem:  there are no Hyatts (or Hyatt Places) anywhere near the place we would need to stop on the way down (North Florida) or on the way back (South Mississippi).

My second-highest number of hotel points is with Hilton HHonors, with whom I have about 5,000 points.  Problem:  it will take 10,000 per room per night to get a reward stay.  Ideally I’d like to be able to cover at least one leg of the trip with a reward stay, which means I’d need about 15,000 more points.  Amercian Airlines allows you to convert your miles into Hilton HHonors points, but I only have a paltry 1,250 miles with American!  (Hilton also owns Hampton Inns and many others, so there are many more of their properties available than there are Hyatt properties.)

At first I thought I’d just send out an E-mail to all my friends and offer to swap 10,000 Hyatt points (which is enough for two reward nights under their system) for a two nights’ worth of points from another program (Hilton, Choice, Priority Club, etc.).  Then I found out that all the various reward programs make you pay money (usually $5 to $10 per 1,000 points) to transfer your points to someone!  Hardly worth it.

I signed up for one of those survey deals where you can earn points for filling out online surveys, but I don’t know how many surveys it will take to rack up 15,000 points!

I did have quite a few Delta SkyMiles at one point, but Delta doesn’t let you convert their miles into anything!  I ended up ordering a subscription to The Atlantic Monthly with some of my Delta SkyMiles.



About revjatb

I am a father of six who is trying to do his best! My interests are varied. I have one blog, KnowTea, that is primarily focused on liturgy and worship and another one, Bengtsson's Baking, that is about, well, baking! I hope you enjoy both of them, and if you have any questions, please contact me!
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8 Responses to Will work for miles and/or points!

  1. Cap'n Whook says:

    Those surveys sell your personal info for targeted advertising. Watch out! One day you’ll get spam specific to tea drinkers who adhere to the Westminster Confession of Faith and know all the words to “Sweet Caroline.”

  2. RevJATB says:

    Where it began, I can’t begin to knowin’ . . .

  3. Have you thought about taking a train? Check the rates. Sometimes you can get a deal. It would be a great experience for the kiddos. Thomas the train come to life.

  4. RevJATB says:

    The problem with Amtrak is the routes. When we lived in Hattiesburg we were on the line for the Southern Crescent which runs from N.O. to NYC. Along the way are Tuscaloosa, Birmingham, Atlanta, and many other cities (such as DC). Where we live now, there is no Amtrak station. Traveling by train in the US is great if you have all the time in the world: been there, done that.

    Transportation is not the problem: gas is cheaper now than it was before we moved here. Longer trips via AmTrak are impractical, especially for a family the size of ours, even if we were near an AmTrak route.

  5. Gay says:

    Andy and his family are staying at the convention hotel but couldn’t get the meals there because the room was already discounted and the tickets. Is that why you chose a different hotel or was there a big difference in price.

  6. RevJATB says:

    We are not even going to try to go in June. The economy being what it is, our church could not budget any funds for GA this year, and since we are taking this trip in December there is no way we could go in June as well. That doesn’t bother me much. Our kids had lots of fun going on the outings with all the other children at GA this past summer in Dallas, but as far as going to WDW is concerned, the first week in December will be a much less crowded time, and we have never been there when the parks and hotels are decorated for Christmas, so what will be fun too. S

    Besides, even if I did go to GA, I probably wouldn’t get to see Andy. There are so many people at those things, I think we saw him once in Dallas, and that was just in passing. I wish we had been able to meet up for dinner or something.

  7. RevJATB says:

    But now to answer your question, yes if you want to do the Disney Dining Plan you have to do it as a part of a package, which means you are paying full price for tickets and the standard “rack rate” for rooms, unless Disney is running a special deal. But we are finding that even with a special deal on a package, the group tickets are still much lower and present a significant enough savings that we will save more by having the group tickets even if we do not get the Disney Dining Plan.

    We are staying at one of Disney’s “Value Resorts,” which have rates that are comparable to some of the affordable, off-site properties such as Hampton Inn.

  8. Gay says:

    Thought you were going at convention time to make it easier. I know your kids will love the trip.

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