The symbiosis w/ cards & Delta + be a pig, not a hog w/ MS spending!

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Ant_guards_its_Aphids

An example of symbiosis: the ant protects the aphids and harvests their sugary excretion from wikipedia.org

Oh to live in interesting times. I am not a huge MS’er. What is MS? Very simple, manufactured spending, that is buying something, often a gift card, reaping the points and cashing out at either no fee or as low a fee as possible.

I am by nature a cautious fellow. I got burned, as I shared at the Chicago Seminars, adding a bunch of users to some certain cards to gain ½ million points and then got FR’ed (I did not comply and still am with that bank to this day – something I only share off-line).

You see, like my example of the ant above, if you treat the aphid in a good way you can get a treat. What treat?

pig nose

All of this has taught me to meet my goals and not go HOG wild since pigs are the ones that get fat and happy (yeah I know I need to lose some weight, but that is not the point today). The point is, we want to give back or at least look like we are giving back. We need to be valued and if possible fly under the radar.

This is a good time of the year to look at the upcoming MQD exempt spend number of $25,000. I have been yelling how I can knock it out in January of 2015. Last year I got it done in two-ish months. I may slow down and do the same and draw it out over 2-3 months as Delta has promised the MQD exempt spend will be around for at least all of next year = no need to rush. My normal spend on my Delta card each month is about 10k-20k so no need to ramp it up just to rush a goal that I have 12 months to meet.

And that is the point of this post. When I am spending I mix it up as I have often said before. I, during my spend period, give up higher percentage deals back to have all kinds of spend on my Delta cards so that I am “giving back” that is not just all one kind of spend one place or a pattern that could get me in trouble or banned from things as we have seen two warnings from HERE and HERE this past week from my fellow bloggers. Getting shut down is something we never want to see happen – ever! I even go to the point of not directly paying my CC from BB; I send those funds to another link of credit I have and then use that to pay off the CC. This may be extreme and over cautious but I do NOT want the most simple way to meet spend to go away.

If all of this is gibberish to you, don’t worry, the post does not really concern you anyway. If you do understand please think about your goals. My goal is being MQD exempt and then reaping MAX MQMs each year (as well as Skymiles next year when they are more scarce). Again, I am willing to forgo some higher yields to meet my goals as those rewards are worth MUCH more to me than most other yields. You should do that same when it comes to what your travel goals are each year. – René

PS – don’t forget to enter my SWAG Saturday ending today!

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Delta Private Jet spend will now earn 10x Skybonus points

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A few years ago, this would have been “smashingly good news” as our friends across the pond might say (and if you have a Delta PVT jet card I bet you say phrases like that). Today, however, this announcement is only really good news for big spenders at Delta as you now get even more Skybonus points. In a nutshell, as I know your time is valuable, you are earning a big chunk of Skybonus … Continue reading

Top off your Delta MQMs with Hilton promo (but check your settings before you do)!

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Once again Hilton has brought back a nice way, through December 20, 2014, to earn a few more MQMs to get you where you need to be. You can earn MAX 10k MQMs but that would mean a LOT of 2 day stay credits to get that many points. There are some “gotcha” T&C bits you must be aware of if you are going to go for these MQMs. They are: “To be eligible for … Continue reading

Rookie Wednesday: Delta Choice Benefits – what and when to pick them

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Welcome to a weekly feature on the Delta Points blog. Each week this series covers in a “rookie” way either a Delta or travel related theme and attempts to break down to a basic level each topic. You can read up on all the previous posts HERE. Now on to this week’s feature. While I have covered Delta’s Choice Benefits before, that was under the old gifts; it is time for a new post with … Continue reading

ICYMI – There have been some REALLY fun Delta Mileage Runs going on this week!

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When December rolls around, I bet our beloved mothership will offer to sell you MQMs again for perhaps even MORE insane and over inflated prices than last year. You can avoid this price gouging and pre-Skymiles2015 earn some nice Skymiles on your run. Oh, and maybe take a little vacation along the way. I mean just take a look at some of the recent deals that I have posted over on DeltaMileageRun.com in this past … Continue reading

A Miami Mileage Run: The VIP lounge at MIA & positioning flight

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A Miami Mileage Run: The VIP lounge at MIA & positioning flight A Miami Mileage Run: The run to Phoenix A Miami Mileage Run: The Sheraton MIA & time in Miami A Miami Mileage Run: The Delta Skyclub in MIA A Miami Mileage Run: The grand totals & the flight home When a 6486 MQM mile Miami to Phoenix Delta Mileage Run pops up for $208 all-in you have to see if you can make … Continue reading

Make sure you get your 70,000 CHASE INK PLUS points (if not instant approval)!

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I hope you got in on the 70,000 point INK PLUS deal that ended at about 3AM ET this morning. I also hope you got the above e-mail. What if you did not? What if you got something like: “Thank you for applying. Your application requires further review before making a decision. Here’s what you can expect: Our goal is to notify you in writing within 10 days; however, in some circumstances it may take … Continue reading

What we should FEAR most from Delta in 2015! Richard Anderson speaks!

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I spent a great deal of time at the recent Chicago Seminars defending why I love Delta. The answer was really simple and I have already outlined that in a post. The airline itself treats frequent flyers really well. Sure, they are decimating the frequent flyer program next year and that is on top of a frequent flyer program that is right now one of the hardest to get value out of. I do, but … Continue reading

A visit to the HOM: My American experiAAnce – the return including a coach leg.

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A visit to the HOM: My American experiAAnce – if you jump ship – what to expect! A visit to the HOM: What it is like at the HOM that is the House of Miles A visit to the HOM: My American experiAAnce – the return including a coach leg. A visit to the HOM: AA Tech, compAArisons & final thoughts – should “we” switch? After a great visit to the HOM it was time … Continue reading

SWAG Saturday: 99.95 pure PLATINUM BAR up for grabs this week!

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Last week I gave away a 1 gram solid GOLD bar. This week we step UP the elite chain and how about a 1 gram PLATINUM bar as a giveaway! First, as always, the rules, are HERE and do not change from week to week (well most weeks that is). By commenting you are agreeing you have reviewed them! Next on to what I am giving away. Since we are talking about Platinum, how about … Continue reading

This week’s SWAG Saturday GOLD BAR winner is…. #97 (is that you?)!

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Wow there was a lot of interest in this week’s giveaway and some really good comments from nearly 300 readers! I thank you all for the input. First let me congratulate, via random.org, #97 that is, Cathy Mayfield who is this week’s winner. Cathy said, regarding the Delta FAs handing out  Delta AMEX GOLD  card forms: It didn’t bother me, but I have noticed that its one less annoyance in the time before deplaning. It … Continue reading

US Bank FlexPerks no longer charges INTERNATIONAL fees!

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US Bank FlexPerks card is following what AMEX did with the Delta AMEX cards a while back, that is, removing the international fee for using the card abroad. This is (about time) good news as this is a card with a chip that I have used when traveling. They don’t have a PIN yet like the Barclays Arrival+ card that has worked really well and also does not have international fees. Having said all that, … Continue reading

Please say “hello” at The #ChicagoSeminars & where to find me!

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It is hard to believe so many years ago Rick, the Frugal Travel Guy, put me in contact with Randy who was speaking at The Chicago Seminars in 2011 and encouraged me to write the blog. Delta Points went live 17NOV that next month. Now, almost 2000 posts later, I will again this year be speaking at the premier frequent flyer event each year. When? 7:30PM tonight sharing Delta secrets I will never blog about! … Continue reading

How to get 8 hours+ out of your Laptop battery (mine is 2 years old btw)! #TravelSkills

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As it happens at this year’s BoardingArea Bacon conference, we did not have any power outlets at our tables (yeah, that was not so good for most of my fellow bloggers). But not such a big deal for me. I have a few tips for you. The first, as you can clearly see in the photo above, is to get a BIG battery brick. Mine is a BEEFY 26000mAh unit. That sounds great, but how … Continue reading

Are you alert to all the TECH WARNINGS we are getting? Are you safe?

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Delta is reminding us about the need to keep our information, especially our Delta login, safe. To NOT use the same one over and over and over. I would even suggest you be very careful when you tweet or post any photos of your boarding pass or other such info on the web; a boarding pass bar-code has a scary amount of info in it sometimes. In a recent”Vectors”, the Delta pilots union Chairman’s Letter, … Continue reading