Reading articles on a topic I know well sometimes inspires me to wonder how much I should trust the stories for which I don't have much background. Today's example: the November 2014 issue of Consumer Reports, where a teaser on the cover advertises "Secrets of Frequent Fliers". They report on the mile+fee costs to book awards on some popular US domestic routes for a weekend trip (Friday-Sunday), looking at three days out, one month out, and three months out. And then they just report those numbers. They don't explain (well) the different tiers of pricing, nor do they look in any depth at availability over time. It's just a spot check. And they don't explain the fees - they don't even take out the $11.20 TSA fee (round-trip) for easy comparisons. And of course they don't look at using FF programs from non-US carriers.