Time to pour out my heart and get some stuff off my chest. Here we go:
- I’ve only flown first class once in my life. And to think I call myself a points-and-miles blogger… the shame! A few reasons for this. First, I didn’t really start getting into points and miles until after our second kid (we’re now up to four) was born, and I’m not about to splurge on upgrades so that we can deal with tantrums in a slightly bigger seat. Also, most of the trips we’ve done the last several years have involved relatively short flights, the sort where the benefits of first class aren’t as pronounced as on, say, a trans-Pacific flight. And finally, and most importantly: if I spend more miles on a higher class of service, I’ll have fewer miles left for travel. Maybe some of you manufacture so much spend this isn’t an issue, but not me. And it’s not just my wife and kids I’m flying, either: in the last few years I’ve flown a dozen members of my wife’s family both domestically and internationally. Points and miles make family reunions much more affordable. Bottom line: first class trips to the Maldives bring the ratings and the oohs and aahs, but you should figure out what your goals are and do what’s right for you.
- I’ve only stayed in a hotel twice this year, both of which were overnight trips. This is my lowest in a while. It’s mostly a function of the fact that I’ve only taken a week of vacation this year since I’m saving it all for a big trip at the end of the year. And the one week I took was a vacation to a beach house with my parents and siblings. On the positive side, my points balances have grown this year. There would have been three hotel trips so far this year except that on one occasion where we were going to stay at a Hyatt I’ve been wanting to try out in a nearby city, three kids came down with ear infections right before we were going to leave. Fortunately Hyatt waived the 24-hour rule for us.
- I’ve never bought any points or miles. Well, I did it once actually: I bought a few thousand from Club Carlson in October so I could redeem and get my points down to zero. I feel like I should since so many bloggers talk about all the points and miles you can buy and what great values they are. Am I missing out? I don’t think so.
- I do not currently have a HAWAIIAN AIRLINES® WORLD ELITE MASTERCARD®. I feel like I should, but I haven’t had one in a few years. Mrs. PFD and I got them back when you could still do 1-for-2 on Hilton Points, back before that one Hilton HHonors DDevaluation. And speaking of the HAWEMC, I really feel like I should put some SEO effort into becoming page one on Google for this card. Wouldn’t that be hilarious?
- I had never had a Chase Sapphire Preferred until this year. It’s the ne plus ultra of credit cards (side note: is ne plus ultra the ne plus ultra of French phrases to work into your writing?), but I don’t feel like I missed out. Inks and Freedoms have sufficed.
- I have never bought a money order at a Walmart ATM. Just not my thing. Different strokes for different folks. I’ve spent time at that ATM for other reasons, though.
- I have never, in my life, taken advantage of a First Friday. Thank goodness we don’t have to hear about that nonsense anymore!