How do you book your trips using points?

Discussion in 'Newbies' started by jmhuth, Jul 8, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. jmhuth

    jmhuth Silver Member

    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    106
    Status Points:
    355
    How do you book your trips? Do you book your flights w/ points before your hotels w/ points or vice versa? I guess I don't know if there is a there is a specific order you should do this or not... Thanks for your help! I've been learning a lot lately thanks to MP!
     
    savydog likes this.
  2. viguera
    Original Member

    viguera Gold Member

    Messages:
    4,737
    Likes Received:
    6,913
    Status Points:
    4,745
    Chances are that there's a lot less availability on flights when trying to book award seats -- especially if you're booking more than one seat -- so if you're planning a trip the first step should (IMO) be getting the flights.

    After you figure out the dates and get the seats, booking a hotel -- whether with points or paying cash -- is generally a lot easier.
     
    worldtraveller2, jmhuth and Mikel like this.
  3. MSPeconomist
    Original Member

    MSPeconomist Gold Member

    Messages:
    58,563
    Likes Received:
    98,528
    Status Points:
    20,020
    If you're planning to use points for your hotel and this is important to you or if you want to stay in one particular hotel, you can usually check availability on the hotel website easily, although of course this could change. Sometimes you can reserve the hotel tentatively without cancellation penalty just in case for the dates you're considering if your plans are pretty specific.
     
    jmhuth and Mikel like this.
  4. wanderlust
    Original Member

    wanderlust Silver Member

    Messages:
    230
    Likes Received:
    347
    Status Points:
    495
    I personally find airline miles significantly harder to redeem when trying to redeem them at "saver"-type rates, so I always try to book them first. Often times flight availability is what determines when and how long I'm going to stay somewhere :).
     
    jmhuth likes this.
  5. Million Mile Secrets

    Million Mile Secrets Silver Member

    Messages:
    233
    Likes Received:
    413
    Status Points:
    460
    Some hotels open their booking 1+ years in advance, so if I'm booking a hotel during peak period, or during a special event, or trying to use cash & points, I will make dummy hotel bookings first, and then book the flight as soon as the booking window opens.
     
    jmhuth likes this.
  6. deant
    Original Member

    deant Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    3,129
    Likes Received:
    12,385
    Status Points:
    10,620
    To me, finding flights is always the hardest. So we book the flights as early as possible.
     
    jmhuth and worldtraveller2 like this.
  7. worldtraveller2
    Original Member

    worldtraveller2 Silver Member

    Messages:
    139
    Likes Received:
    171
    Status Points:
    375
    I always do flights first. At this point, I just let the points make the decisions as to where I will go, because the main bucket list has been crossed off. I just plug in some dates and look for availabity. If Guadalajara looks good, versus say Barcelona, then Guadalajara it is. then I search around for hotel and b and b info on tripadvisor. Although I am a starwood junkies as well and often, fly for free (to cheap) and say for free (to cheap)!
     
    jmhuth likes this.
  8. Jaimito Cartero
    Original Member

    Jaimito Cartero Silver Member

    Messages:
    595
    Likes Received:
    848
    Status Points:
    770
    If it's a super hotel deal, I book the nights first, and worry about flights later. Unless it's Christmas or Spring Break, I can usually get most places with a bit of advance notice.

    I try to avoid super busy places. New York Times Square for NYE. No city where the Superbowl is.

    Having miles in a lot of different programs helps. I can book on about 20 different airlines, at a minimum, with the miles I have in 4 different programs.
     
  9. cennas
    Original Member

    cennas Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,765
    Likes Received:
    5,047
    Status Points:
    3,970
    I also always book flights first and worry about the hotels later. Generally, for me, it is more difficult to book award flights than award nights, especially if I can't be flexible and have specific flights/dates in mind. With hotels, I haven't had any problems redeeming my points for free award stays.
     
  10. SC Flier
    Original Member

    SC Flier Gold Member

    Messages:
    14,851
    Likes Received:
    30,839
    Status Points:
    16,520
    I usually find my flights first, book confirmed hotels, and then book the flights. If something doesn't work out when booking the flight, I can usually cancel the hotels without penalty. But if something doesn't work out with the hotels, cancelling the flight usually costs extra.
     
    jmhuth and rharrigill like this.

Share This Page