All these bloggers seem to be missing something?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by mo26, Jan 26, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. mo26

    mo26 Silver Member

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    DISCLAIMER: this is purely an observation from someone who has spent the last year following 3-dozen travel related blogs.

    For the most part, the blogging world has a great mix of miles-earning tips, product reviews, and a heavy dose of cc offers. Of course, not all bloggers are created equal. In fact, the blog I started with a year ago, I don't even follow anymore since I feel his posts catered to the novice, and are lacking in original material (for his sake, I hope i'm in the minority since he is now a full-time blogger). While not picking on anyone, i'm just trying to illustrate that with all the choices, there's a blog out there for everyone :)

    I digress....Regarding these product reviews, I can probably count on one hand the number of reviews I read that told me how many points a particular redemption cost, and where those points came from....Yes I know award charts are published on an airlines website :)

    By way of example, I've read so many reviews about EK's 380 shower, I feel like i've been there....What I don't know, is how these writers are getting there. Is it a miles transfer from heavy spend on an SPG Amex, AS Visa miles from some churning, or did Emirates pay for their seat, etc.

    Maybe it's none of my business how they got to seat 2K, but curiosity gets the better of me sometimes. After all, a review from an EK 380 is going to rave about the shower whether the passenger banked miles for two years, or was a guest of EK's marketing department.

    I guess i'm just getting picky, but i'd like to read a review of an airline or hotel and know exactly how many points (and where they came from) were used in the redemption......That way I have an idea of how I might replicate on my end.

    Thoughts?


    MO
     
  2. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    EK A380 shower is most reasonably accomplished by purchasing a paid F ticket ex-CMB to JFK. That's how I did it last January.

    It isn't easy to account explicitly for where all the points come from. Nearly all of mine come from actually flying. I'm not really in to CC churning or fake spend on CCs. But I wouldn't be able to specifically say that I flew X, Y and Z MRs in 2012 to earn NNN points to fly trip Q in 2013. The details aren't quite that smooth.

    The other bit which makes it hard is that all the award charts are different. I can say that I used 50K United points for a one-way EWR-MUC-FRA award in biz but you might get that at a different price using LH, AC, US or A3 points. And there's no way I'm going to list all the different price options in a post. Just not worth my time to research them all out. Sorry.

    As for all the blogs having a healthy chunk of CC shill posts, you should read better blogs. ;)
     
  3. mo26

    mo26 Silver Member

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    Thanks for the response, I can appreciate the BIS accrual :)
     
  4. Slow_Mustang
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    Slow_Mustang Silver Member

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    If indeed the person banked miles for two years to get there, I sure hope he did not quit taking his daily showers in anticipation of the EK 380 shower. ;)
     
  5. mo26

    mo26 Silver Member

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    AGREED!!!
     
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  6. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    The ex-CMB first class fare works to several cities in the US, not just JFK. Helped a work colleague book a couple to IAD recently, and the fare exists to LAX, etc. The key is to fly either AA or an AA codeshare (BA metal) across the pond.

    When One Mile at a Time wrote his recent report about his first EK shower experience it was an award flight on British Airways that got delayed and he reported BA rebooked him onto EK as a revenue passenger.

    The most economical EK F award is using JL miles, which can be transferred in from SPG. The best value is staying under 20,000 miles flown on their distance-based chart, so something like JFK-DXB-BKK and return works.

    I've written many times on my own blog that I acquire miles through a variety of (1) butt in seat flying (2) credit card signup bonuses (I've been churning cards since ~ 1997) and (3) reimbursable business expenses, I've long been in a very fortunate position there to be able to put Very. Large. Work Charges. on my personal credit cards and get reimbursed before the bills come :)
     
  7. mo26

    mo26 Silver Member

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    Very cool Gary,

    An un-intended consequence from this post has illustrated one amazing aspect of this hobby (and mp in particular), which is the availability of the bloggers (experts :)) and their desire to grow the hobby!

    .....Very Cool Indeed :)
     
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  8. iolaire
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    iolaire Gold Member

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    I agree, I think it would be nice to have more reminders of how various bloggers are able to travel so much. Some people see to be self employed and traveling every two weeks, is that due to smart use of offers? spending $2,200 of blog income? Or whatever... It would add more to the story than here is a first class menu. I like what Rick is doing with the reader stories of here is how somebody went on some trip with points, but those posts are not as well written/documented as the major bloggers content.

    Thanks to the bloggers sharing there info on this thread.

    FYI an interesting story sometime might be a random poll of bloggers re how much is spent on travel versus trips flow in a year. For example unless a company is paying your hotel bills I'd guess people spend a fairly large amount maintaining their hotel status.
     
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  9. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I don't really keep track of total spending over the year. And I'm a little scared to go back and audit myself. :eek:
     
  10. TheBOSman

    TheBOSman Silver Member

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    The best way to get an EK A380 F shower is probably AKL-SYD on the A380, or one of the intra-Asia flights (BKK-HKG I think?). A little easier than making the CMB fare work, and cheaper generally (AKL-SYD is almost always well under $1000, and you get the chaffeur service at both ends, the CMB fare is cheap but is still a fare for a good distance in F so it tends to be a bit higher).
     
  11. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The CMB fares were around $2200 IME. That's not bad at all for the amount of time you get in F.
     
  12. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    And by 'were' you mean still are ;) In fact, just priced one out CMB-DXB-LHR-LAX in EK/BA F for US$2068.
     
  13. CC sign up bonuses do not work as well in Canada due to a lack of real choices but convincing people to let me pay for certain things on my CC and getting a check from them has worked for me. I did one a while back for around $20K. Of course I know them well enough to trust the check and they, being in awe of my travels, are "easy prey".:D I too run a large amount of business charges through my CC's and fly a lot of course. Now if I could only get the Canadian government to let me pay my company taxes by CC that would be just dandy.
     
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  14. mo26

    mo26 Silver Member

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    I'm glad I used EK first in my example and not UA coach from LAX-JFK, it would have been boring ;)
     
  15. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    I do a rough accounting each year when filing my taxes. Megan is not happy whenever I quote the number.
     
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  16. boondr

    boondr Gold Member

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    You aren't married yet right?

    It only becomes more fun.
     
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  17. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    I have the number as part of my taxes as well but it is rather fuzzy and skewed by things like the EK F fare versus other trips and such. I can afford what I'm doing so I'm OK with it, but I know the number is a bit scary.
     
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  18. worldtraveller2
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    worldtraveller2 Silver Member

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    I also don't track my points as closely as some, it is hard to remember where they all come from. But my blog is mostly about travel and less about points...www.pointsandtravel.com
     
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  19. estnet
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    estnet Gold Member

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    Okay I get the unique nature of a shower at 35000 feet - but is it really all that?
    I can go for 12 hours without a shower and have to admit I feel a bit bad about all the extra fuel for the weight of the water, but not so guilty about good champagne, service and food;)
     
  20. schen75

    schen75 Silver Member

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    To lucky's credit he did provide a lot of the detail on how he booked those tickets...but his latest "A380 extravaganza..." postings so far have not provided any detail on the method of his booking for his around the world travel...I don't think I'll be the only one interested in knowing how is he making this possible??...just saying..;)
     
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  21. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Actually he did reference a special fare, which I've given quite a bit of detail on above.
     
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  22. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I resemble this situation, except for credit card churning, which I am not into at all. The 'reimbursable business expenses' route, put on personal CCs then reimbursed, accounts for 80-90% of my airline miles and hotel points, especially since I purposely select my "business" travel to be mostly long-haul intl where I stay almost exclusively at Hilton properties...It is really fortunate to be able to do this all year and then to use the earned miles and hotel points for personal travel that costs almost nothing out of pocket at the end of the year, then repeat yearly...:)
     
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  23. TheBOSman

    TheBOSman Silver Member

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    It is a better deal in terms of flight time, and dollars per hour of F (can we make that a statistic? :D), but still $1200-1500 more. I can afford what I do (and what I spend annually MRing on AA in exchange for the status and award miles), but I'd still have to think a lot harder about $2000+ vs. $700. Of course, the $2000 will get me home without needing to use miles, and that does count for something. It depends on each person's personal tolerance.
     
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  24. youpaiyou

    youpaiyou Silver Member

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    My main gripe with the majority of the blogs is that they push whatever CC deals are out at the moment. I find it refreshing when a blogger advises readers not to sign up for a particular CC offer. Of course, my gripe has been expressed by others in the past. I'm not sure bloggers care though seeing as many receive a handsome reward when readers use their links.
     
  25. Randy Petersen
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    Randy Petersen Founder

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    I don't understand why the need to consider this a blogger thing. These types of stories are quite similar to the very same stories written by any number of other frequent flyers and posted as Trip Reports here or elsewhere -- with pictures and showers and all. Not sure why if one writes or posts to a blog format vs. a forum format we'd need a different set of explanations of how they got to the information they just posted. While I would be curious as to how long someone saved their miles for their ultimate bucket list award redemption, whether it be EK's marketing department, a corporate paid ticket or even the self-sacrifice of your own miles or money, it's still pretty cool to read these "Trip Reports" no matter where they are posted.

    I might have missed it, but for the shower scene do they supply bar soap or just body wash?
     

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