Airline travel and hotel

Ikeepitcold

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 22, 2011
9,045
161
Reno Nv
I do a lot of traveling this time of year with my daughter and wife for competition cheer. I have spent a small fortune in air fair and hotel expenses and am looking for some info on where you guys go to find inexpensive travel?

I use a credit card through out the year to build points to get discounts on airfare and I was able to get our tickets to Florida this year for free! I also use the same card to book flights because I get double points but I?m not sure I?m getting the best prices. I have checked a couple cheap flights type apps but they kill you with the added charges.

Thanks for the help
 
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HuskyMusky

Veteran member
Nov 29, 2011
1,110
24
IL
I prefer cash back credit cards, to each their own, but a dollar is a dollar, and a % is a %, I don't know what 20,000 airline points or miles means, plus I've heard they can change these things.

Also I want my cash back asap, vs waiting to use. Also then when looking for airfare I can simply search online and buy the cheapest, no blackout dates etc..
I get anywhere from 1-3% cash back on purchases, and more interest on that in my savings, so the sooner it's back in my account the sooner I'm earning interest, I don't ike loaning the gov't or corporations my money interest free...

Many aren't good at saving though and as soon as they get a cashback they use it.

good luck.
 

Ikeepitcold

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 22, 2011
9,045
161
Reno Nv
Mine does allow for cash back as well. The cash back is about half as what the miles points are worth if spent towards airfair. So $500 cash back I can book a flight that cost $1k.
 

mallardsx2

Veteran member
Jul 8, 2015
2,055
398
I know I wish I had gotten an Alaska airlines credit card about 6 months ago. It would have saved me BIG TIME on getting plane tickets...
 

go_deep

Veteran member
Nov 30, 2014
2,019
569
Wyoming
I use kayak.com Select the flex days +/- 3 days and find the cheapest days in and out to fly. Works great, as long add you can be a little flexible.
I can usually get round trip tickets for around $100-$150, in the lower 48. I some times buy a one way ticket each way also, that's saved me money a few times, buy it does take time to research to find the best deals.
As far as a plastic deal, I don't have a CC, only use a debit card or cash.
 
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hoshour

Veteran member
A friend of mine uses the Southwest Airline credit card and gets a companion pass by doing so and rants and raves about the savings.

https://thepointsguy.com/guide/earn-southwest-companion-pass-new-year/
I also use a SWA card to get miles. I like them too because you can change your return flight without a charge. Try that with the other airlines, plus I can check two bags free and when I have my gear, that's huge. And, you can use miles on any SWA flight, not the garbage times available with FF mile programs through the other airlines.

As for finding the best prices, Google Flights works best. Just tell it not to include Frontier because they are so deceptive with their low fares and all the add-ons like paying for seats and carry-on, etc. etc. that they're a pain. Tuesday is usually the cheapest day to buy tickets and if you see a good fare, grab it because they don't last.

One of my daughters uses a mileage card to pay for practically everything instead of a DR card and pays it every week so she doesn't get behind. Not sure what card.
 

Ikeepitcold

Administrator
Staff member
Feb 22, 2011
9,045
161
Reno Nv
I heard the same thing about Tuesdays. I was watching a flight to Denmark and check on Tuesday, and about crapped myself as the tickets went up $250 per ticket! Checked the following Friday and they dropped back to were it was when I first saw the cost. Booked it as fast as o could before it went up and stayed up.

The Tuesday thing might not be for international travel.
 

JimP

Veteran member
Mar 28, 2016
4,044
996
66
Gypsum, Co
On my flight to Africa and back I looked at a lot of airfares.

We were pretty much suck on the flight over but we left Denver on a Tuesday night and NY Wednesday morning to arrive in South Africa Thursday.

For our home bound trip I looked at leaving Sunday or Monday and the cost were way over what we wanted to pay. Tuesday they dropped over 50% from what they were on Sunday and Monday. So that is what we booked. We just did a little bit more sightseeing before we left.
 

Finsandtines

Very Active Member
Jun 16, 2015
516
1
Florida
I use SWA whenever I can. Free bags, free flights, a list gets me on the plane first and the seat with the most leg room most times, and you can cancel for a credit on next flight up to the day of. Plus they send you free drink cards! I was Traveling every week or every other for a while so the points racked up for free flights. I usually put the fares on discover card to get cash back too. When not on SWA, I book With an American Airlines card and get points for free flights there. I usually Book Tuesday thru Thursday and fly those same days when I can for lower fares and most times just book directly on the website. 4-6 weeks advance is typically lowest fares but it all depends on how many seats they sell. Orbitz will give you an overview of all airlines and prices to where your flying. Whatever hotel or airline i fly, I have A frequent flyer or hotel account. I usually Book on hotels.com for cheaper rates and if you sign up you get a free night worth the average of stays for 10 nights. You can double or triple dip here too. I book On hotels.com with my discover and then provide my hotel account number for credit when I check In.
 

Slugz

Veteran member
Oct 12, 2014
3,032
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50
Woodland Park, Colorado
All programs have different positives and negatives to meet your needs. Key I think is to define the need and match it up to the program you want....and more importantly what you want to achieve.

1) Time to buy is huge. Tuesday 1400 EST is when all ticket prices all over the world are the cheapest to buy.....they then slowly increase until Sunday night, they decrease a little until the lowest point Tuesday then repeat.
2) Travel days is second. Mid week, non holiday
3) Some miles programs are very good , others not......some tie it to a credit card.....being a member of the program also gets you lower prices when buying through the airlines webpage sometimes.

What works for me. I travel international 8000-12000 miles a month and a United Mileage Plus Member. My one international month converts to one free flight CONUS ( using miles) and or one night of a swanky downtown Denver hotel after two months. When the kids were smaller we used that for all the sports trips. I like the ease of doing it all on one web page also, flights, hotels....etc. There really isn't much I cant buy with miles under United's program.
 

Bonecollector

Veteran member
Mar 9, 2014
4,398
867
Ohio
Reviving this old thread. Looking to make it up to AK in the next year or so. Would the Alaskan Airlines credit card be best for this type of trip?
 

idcwby

Active Member
Jun 23, 2015
174
233
Idaho
Yes. More than likely you’ll fly Alaskan at some point to get there. I don’t have one of there CC. Just having a mileage account I get emails all the time about discounts with there CC.

idcwby
 

Bonecollector

Veteran member
Mar 9, 2014
4,398
867
Ohio
Yes. More than likely you’ll fly Alaskan at some point to get there. I don’t have one of there CC. Just having a mileage account I get emails all the time about discounts with there CC.

idcwby
so how do you have a mileage account without a credit card? Just trying to understand.
The only credit card that I have is a Cabela’s card which I’m about to get rid of and an E Bates card Which pays cash back. We pay most of our bills on this credit card and then pay the card in for monthly. We get roughly $125 a quarter back in cash
 

idcwby

Active Member
Jun 23, 2015
174
233
Idaho
You don’t need a CC to have a mileage account. It is just for keeping track of the miles you fly. If I were you I’d get the Alaskan CC and do what your doing now with your E Bates card. That’ll build you some points/miles it may not be enough for a free ticket, but may help.

idcwby
 
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