Just a Few Words Before I Start Drinking…

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Looks like the Sky will bleed with Colors tonight @ Marina Bay... Wishing everyone a wonderful evening of fun & excitement! Happy New Year from Singapore!

It has been a good year, and the next one is going to be even better.

Despite all the past and future devaluations, mergers, and anguish, it doesn’t seem we have lost or going to lose the ability to travel for next to nothing. True, travel is never nothing, it’s always gonna cost us. But next to nothing is the next best thing, and I’ll take it anytime; day or night, dusk or dawn, you tell me.

I’ve received more than a few emails from folks who have caught my free Fly Me to Atlantis promotion too late. So I’m running it again starting January 2. This book also explains how to load up on Choice Privileges points, which are notoriously difficult to collect. Even if you’re not interested in Atlantis but would like to learn how to utilize this severely under-appreciated program, which is great for European hotels, check it out.

Citi Cards played Santa today by improving its Hilton Reserve credit card offer. In addition to two weekend nights at any Hilton worldwide (old benefit), they have also added a $100 statement credit for spending $100 or more at a Hilton property within the first three months of membership. That includes any charges you make to your room.

There are two ways to look at it. If you have a Hilton stay planned within the next three months, consider it a refund for the $95 annual fee. You are probably going to dine or have a drink there anyway. If you don’t, I would look into buying a Hilton gift card with a subsequent resale, although looking at the terms and conditions, it’s not quite clear to me if that would qualify as an eligible transaction.

Another addition to Citi offerings is a slightly modified Citi Hilton regular card. Instead of 50,000 points this one offers 40,000 plus $50 statement credit if you spend $50 or more at Hilton within the next three months.

Only consider this offer if you already have a planned stay at Hilton, and even then, the value is questionable. Otherwise, go for the old 50,000-point offer.

Find these updates on my Best Credit Cards for Free Stays section, and Huge thanks to Michael_V who posted about it on Flyertalk today.

Check my Saturday post at Frugal Travel Guy this weekend; I’ve completely forgotten to write about it until now. It’s the final post about cheap world airlines, and yeah, there are cases to be made in favor of buying cheap tickets vs. redeeming awards. So let me actually paste the links to all of them in chronological order.

Low-Cost European Airlines

Low-Cost Asian Airlines

Low-Cost Middle Eastern Airlines

World’s Best Low-Cost Carriers

My Sunday post was about some tricks that can be employed to find dirt cheap airfares. In fact, my segment about Skiplagged triggered quite a lively discussion at FTG, so I should, perhaps, try and analyze it here a little more extensively. Here is the post.

Six Tips to Score Dirt Cheap Airfare

LoyaltyLobby posted info about IHG last minute reward nights which are totally meh! There are a couple of interesting properties on that shortest list ever (I think), so see if you find something that suits you. You would have to stay on the first weekend of January and book these awards no later than on Thursday.

In conclusion, I’d love to mention a fantastic post by TravelIsFree that sums up excellent detective work he’s done this year. If you are even slightly interested in somewhat advanced technics of stretching your miles so they could go further, check it out. You’ll be glad you did.

Happy New Year, and Happy Hobbying!

Photo credit:
williamcho / Foter.com / CC BY-SA

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