How Do You Manage Emails, Airlines Programs, New Deals and everything related?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by SgtPeppers, Mar 20, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. SgtPeppers
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    SgtPeppers Silver Member

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    So! with lot of enthusiasm and passion I started the journey of collecting more miles and getting to my dream travel destinations for free/low cost. I signed up for US Airways, AA, Delta, Alaska, and bunch of other airlines. Then I signed up for bunch of hotel chains.

    Some one suggested MyPoints and eMiles and eRewards and what not. Done. Signed up for all of them.

    And then the worst happened.

    I started getting emails. Emails from Airlines programs and emails from hotels. Fill out my survey and get xx points from other programs.

    Couple of weeks later, this has turned into a heck of an unmanageable deal that I think its like a full time job.

    Now the question: How in the world are the champions here managing their programs? What systems are you using? (I know about AwardWallet and I am at GoMiles, but that solves a minor problem of tracking miles to a degree.. ) Can you share your tips and tricks and excel spreadsheets and what not to help us newbies with this journey?

    Much appreciated.

    --------
    Update: I thought to make this useful for fellow "travel hackers", it would make sense to summarize what I am learning from this discussion.:)

    X Ridiculously Useful Tips to Manage Your Emails, Airlines Programs and Everything Related
    1. Use separate email account for your mile and point hacking emails.
    2. Don't let your emails sit up in the inbox.
    3. Use filters (like in gmail ) to move emails in a separate folders.
    4. Pending Miles tracking is important. Use excel spreadsheet (or GDocs) for that.
     
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  2. Westsox
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    Westsox Gold Member

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    I use a separate email for all travel related activity. I use it for airlines, hotels, Milepoint, eRewards, e-miles, my points, opinion place, and award wallet. Everything collects in one place and I can quickly review and end deleting much of it without reading. Also, a good practice is to deal with each email only one time. Open the email, read it, take the necessary action, then delete or put it in a specific folder for saving. Do not leave it in your inbox.
     
  3. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    What Westsox says.:)
     
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  4. Chimpy
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    Chimpy Gold Member

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    My setup is very similar to Westsox. I started a separate gmail account just to use for travel related emails. Within the account I also set up folders with message rules so that an email from Qantas will automatically go to the Qantas folder, Hilton to the Hilton folder etc. It is obviously not perfect but I have found that it did save me a lot of time in the long run. :)
     
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  5. Westsox
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    Westsox Gold Member

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    I had not thought of setting up message rules. Thanks for the tip.
     
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  6. Philphactor
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    Philphactor Silver Member

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    +1 separate email for all travel-related stuff, preferably gmail, yahoo, live, etc. that can be accessed from anywhere
    +1 manage the email, don't let it set ... meaning look, act, file or delete
     
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  7. SgtPeppers
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    SgtPeppers Silver Member

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    Thank you everyone. This is greatly helpful. Anyone else doing anything different?
     
  8. SirRagnar
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    SirRagnar Silver Member

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    For emails I also use message filters in outlook to split all airline relevant into my "Fly" folder (Fly is aircraft in Danish) and hotel related to "Hotels".
    That is sufficient filtering for me. I never delete any email (except spam). It's an old habit from work, where it is against guidelines to delete anything (I'm in Clinical Trials).

    For mile trackings I use awardwallet - by far the best of all I've tried, and I've tried pretty much all of them.

    For pending miles I use an excel sheet where I enter the flights I have taken and stays I have made at hotels and no yet been giving miles/points for. This is an important tool for me as miles doesn't always post automatically and then I periodically check my excel sheet to see if there is anything outstanding and retro-register that. Without that I would certainly have lost some miles over time.
     
  9. miles and smiles
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    miles and smiles Gold Member

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    I minimize the number of emails I get. I have found that for me they are 98% garbage. I only allow emails from programs I am actively interested in. I trust that I will find out about deals on MP, FT and other websites In fact, I have found virtually all of my deals that way.
    And I am a bit old fashioned in that I keep track of miles pending and some of my credit card spend info on paper. Whatever works.......:)
    I do love Awardwallet !
     
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  10. SirRagnar
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    SirRagnar Silver Member

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    That's a good point. I'm certain most - if not all - the valuable info in emails are also published here. There are also the occasional targeted promos though - or at least SAS is often sending out targeted promos like double points in a period and such. But again, most if not all of those are also published here.
     
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  11. SgtPeppers
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    SgtPeppers Silver Member

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    Guys this has been great!! Thank you for your advice. And please keep it coming...
     
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  12. miles and smiles
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    miles and smiles Gold Member

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    Yes, there are occasional targeted promos. I have received one that was very valuable and which I needed the private promo code. So, there are certain programs that I do allow emails from. I just like to be discriminating about allowing emails.
    Clearly there are many approaches to this question.
    Good question from the OP and good thread! :)
     
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  13. ahow628
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    ahow628 Silver Member

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    If you don't want to have to log into two separate email accounts all the time, you might try forwarding the email from your travel gmail account to your regular gmail account. Have a filter set up that sends all the travel related emails to a specific folder instead of your inbox. Then you can check it in the single account, but still have it out of your normal inbox.
     
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  14. SgtPeppers
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    SgtPeppers Silver Member

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    Great advice @ahow628. I have used separate email and then filtered it into the main email... It works great. Only problem is my gmail is 80% full :D... anyway, I can always sign up for another one.
     
  15. FlyMeToTheLooneyBin
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    FlyMeToTheLooneyBin Silver Member

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    What Westsox said. I read them, then manually shove them in a "travel" folder for flights. I don't get any other emails worth tracking, even personal mail gets forgotten. :)
     
  16. ahow628
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    ahow628 Silver Member

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    You can get an additional 20GB of storage (for a total of 27+ GB) for $5 per year. Not a bad deal. We currently have an additional 80GB on my account since we store all photos at full resolution in PicasaWeb. It costs $20 a year. Totally worth it for the pics to be backed up IMO.
     
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  17. Tenmoc
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    Tenmoc Gold Member

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    I am like most. I have a separate email address for all things travel related. I also have an android based phone so it is very easy to keep up with multiple gmail accounts and also have it with me anywhere I may need.

    I admit I don't do a good job reading all of them, but I have them when I need them.

    I would honestly limit the number of programs you want to play with. Determine your goals and then use the few more for more rewards. This will help your email issue as well.
     
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