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Travel

Sayulita Love

May 16, 2017

Mat and I recently had the opportunity to visit the sweet surfing city, Sayulita, Mexico for a friend’s wedding. The verdict is out and…we are in love with it. So much so that we may or may not have looked at property while we were there. 😉 This was such a wonderful trip because we were able to travel with our good friends Tony and Heidy! Travel is always enhanced when you can spend it with friends and family.

We found a great villa to rent on Airbnb (Casa Kukana) that came with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a full kitchen and our own private pool. We did some research before we went and found that most travelers rent golf carts (how great/cute is that?!) to get around the town. If you are traveling to Sayulita, I would definitely recommend getting one mostly because it’s so fun. Plus, it helps you get around fast and is easy to find a parking spot.

It is important to note, however, that depending on where you are staying or wanting to visit, a golf cart may not get you there. There are two neighborhoods in the town that a regular ol’ golf cart can’t access: Gringo Hill and Nanazal. The town is built up in the hills, and these two areas are too steep to access with a regular four-seater golf cart. If you are staying in these areas you will need to rent a larger golf cart or a Polaris.

Sayulita is about a 45 min drive north of the Puerta Vallarta airport, so we arranged (through our Airbnb rental) a private taxi to pick us up. What was great about this arrangement is that not only was it a luxurious SUV, but the driver had ice-filled coolers in the back full of water and beer for us! Perfect for after the semi-long flying time to get there.

Scheduling a private ride from the airport worked out great because the price we paid included a stop at the Mega, which is basically the Wal-Mart of Mexico. Since we had a full kitchen in our rental, we stocked up on food and drinks for the week. Mat and I spent less than $100 on food and alcohol for the week, and if you know how often Mat eats, you will understand how much money this saved us! We also picked up some other items at the Mega including SPF, tanning lotion and a sports bra for me. Long story about the sports bra…but it’s nice to know that items like this are available if needed!

The villa we rented also provided all the filtered drinking water we needed, which is a must in Sayulita so you don’t get sick drinking the unfiltered water there. We even used the filtered water to brush our teeth just to be cautious. I loved our villa so much that it was difficult to ever want to leave it! We had the most amazing views of the beach and the town from our pool.

The town itself is what totally won me over. It is basically everything I want to be able to do every day including: laying on the beach, never brushing my hair, not wearing a bra or shoes, macrame, live music, yoga, delicious food (including pizza and dessert!), cold drinks and amazing shops. All of this is available in this adorable city! We found that Sayulita is a vacation destination for both Americans and locals, which is so cool!

Heidy compared the little town of Sayulita to one of her favorite travel destinations, Costa Rica. Mat and I haven’t been to Costa Rica (yet), but we thought it reminded us a little bit of Curacao. The adorable surf and yoga town is a bit more jungle-y than other places we have visited in Mexico, which makes me feel like I’m in a tree-house up in the hills. I loved it.

One of our favorite parts of the trip happened because we took a wrong turn on the way back to the villa one night and randomly came across a street we nicknamed Carnival Alley. The reason for the nickname was because on this street there was the greatest carnival-like game ever. I don’t think it has a name but we called it Beer Toss. There was a large makeshift wall with rows of glass beer bottles held up by nails, and in front was a table filled with rocks. Yes, glass beer bottles. And yes, rocks. So simple yet brilliant. You pay 30 pesos (equivalent to about $1.60) for three rocks to throw and try to break a glass beer bottle. For every bottle you break, you get a beer. No joke. So, you could potentially win three beers for for about a buck and a half. And it’s oddly satisfying to break a glass bottle with a rock. We had SO much fun in Carnival Alley.  You can see the bottle breaking action near the end of our video below this post.

All in all, the wedding was beautiful (congrats to the new Mr. and Mrs. T!) and the laid back, surfing town won us over. I’m hoping to see you next year, Sayulita!

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Sayulita Love

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Rewards Points Travel

Aruba, Curacao, and South Beach Miami for free

January 29, 2017

Idaho is going through one of the coldest/snowiest winters in the past 30 years.  Snow, ice, freezing rain, slush, inversions, misery.  We had to escape it if only for a short while.  Luckily, we already had a getaway booked for January not knowing just how badly we would end up needing it.  This is kind of a funny story how it all came about actually.  Back in September, we booked this trip out of spite for the sole purpose of getting back at the Hyatt hotel brand.  Somewhat of a blessing in disguise, here is how we ended up visiting Aruba, Curacao, and South Beach Miami for free.

Last summer, Lacey and I visited Huntington Beach, CA.  You may remember our post about it here.  We ended up staying at a little Air BnB during that trip by default as Hyatt would not let us use the 4 free nights we earned from this card.  The Hyatt reps were so awful and unhelpful while I was trying to book nights at one of their $200 per night properties down there.  I felt like they were doing everything in their power to prevent me from redeeming the awards we earned.  Long story short, Hyatt pissed me off super bad and I wanted to get back at ’em for how they treated us.

Angrily, I googled “most expensive Hyatt hotel”.  At the top of the results was their resort in Aruba.  What a coincidence, Southwest Airlines flies to Aruba meaning Lacey and I could get there for free because we earned the Companion Pass.  This was our chance to stick it to Hyatt as these rooms were $600 per night.  Suck it Hyatt.  Side note, these rooms in Aruba were a challenge to book as well.  Their website would tell me there was no availability when I search for 2 or 4 consecutive nights at this resort.  Oddly, when I searched 1 night at a time it was available.  So, I ended up having to make 4 separate reservations in order to get 4 nights in a row.  Keep this in mind when you’re looking for availability on Hyatt’s website.  I’m not kidding, they do their best to prevent you from using your rewards.

While booking our flights to Aruba, I found that we could break up the trip by making stops on the island of Curacao and in South Beach Miami.  We had never been to either place and both looked amazing.  We booked a suite for a night at the amazing Hilton resort in Curacao with honors points and booked 2 nights at the Shelborne Boutique Hotel on South Beach in Miami with Wyndham reward points.  I have to mention how awesome the staff at the Shelborne resort were to us.  I emailed them prior to the trip to confirm our reservation and briefly mentioned that it was an anniversary trip.  When we checked in, they said “it looks like you are celebrating a special event with us so you have been upgraded to an ocean view penthouse suite.”  I had totally forgot that I emailed ’em about it and was a little caught off guard at first.  Then I turned to Lacey and said “happy anniversary, ha”.  If that weren’t enough, they sent us a bottle of champagne later that night.  That was pretty amazing of them and we are so grateful.

Our week-long trip was just what we needed to break up this awful winter here in Idaho.  Each place we visited was amazing for their individual reasons.  Aruba’s beautiful white sand beaches, flamingos, and iguanas made us feel like we were in a different reality.  Curacao’s tropical surroundings and heavily Dutch influenced architecture had us wishing we had more time to spend there.  The hustle and bustle of South Beach blended with the beauty and calm atmosphere at the beach had us asking each other if we were ready to move there.

One last thing to point out.  We ended up paying $25 a night to upgrade our room at the Hyatt in Aruba to an ocean front suite.  So for $100 + taxes we stayed in a room that was priced at $789 per night.  We ended up getting a value of about $3100 from our 4 reward nights.  Maybe Hyatt will rethink their customer service approach when someone is trying to book a $200 per night room next time 🙂

Total Amount of Free Flights/Hotels for this trip alone = $6,799 prior to taxes

  • Southwest Flights – $2900 (we used Southwest points and the Companion Pass to book these flights)
  • Hyatt in Aruba – $3100 (Lacey and I both signed up for this card to earn 2 free nights each)
  • Hilton in Curacao – $309 (used a combination of these cards over time to earn Hilton Honors points)
  • Shelborne Boutique Hotel on South Beach – $490 (we used Wyndham reward points from this card to book this)

Photos in Aruba –

Renaissance Island (where the Flamingos and Iguanas are)

Baby Bridge (natural arch)

Bon Bini Festival

California Lighthouse

Eagle Beach

Rainbow Aruba

first view upon opening our window shades at the Hyatt in Aruba. Not a bad start

Grand Hyatt Aruba

I heart Aruba Sign

Flamingo Island Aruba

Flamingo Island Aruba

Flamingo Island Aruba

Flamingo Island Aruba

Iguana Island Aruba

Flamingo Island Aruba

California LightHouse Aruba

California LightHouse Aruba

Coconut Drink Aruba

Aruba Panorama

Baby Bridge Aruba

“Baby Bridge”

Aruba Rock Garden

rock garden near the natural bridge

Aruba Natural Bridge

Bon Bini Aruba

at the “Bon Bini” festival

 

Photos in Curacao:

Downtown Willemstad

Hilton Curacao

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Willemstad Curacao

Willemstad Curacao

Willemstad Curacao

Dushi Curacao

Curacao Sign

Curacao Hilton

Hilton Curacao

view from our Hilton Suite in Curacao

 

Photos in South Beach:

Shelborne Boutique Hotel

South Beach

Henna Tattoo on South Beach

South Beach, Miami

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South Beach Miami

South Beach Miami

South Beach Miami

South Beach Miami Henna Tattoo

South Beach Miami Henna Tattoo

Lacey got her 1st Henna Tattoo on South Beach

South Beach Miami Henna Tattoo

South Beach Miami Henna Tattoo

South Beach Miami

view from our upgrade at the Shelborne in South Beach

Rewards Points Travel

3 Free Hotel Nights for Your Next Trip

August 6, 2016

Many of our recent “how to get free travel” posts have been focused on earning free flights.   The reason being is that we’re currently in love with our newly acquired Southwest Airlines Companion Pass.  We booked over $4k in free flights in 3 months!  Anyways, that’s a previous story.  While free flights are a huge piece to the free travel puzzle, let’s make it complete by adding some free hotel stays.  I am going to give you really quick tip that will result in you booking 3 free hotel nights while choosing from over 7,200 locations and properties.

Before I tell you the sweet, sweet magic that will get you around $1,000 in free hotel stays I want to remind you that we do not get any sort of compensation for what I’m about to recommend.  The coolest part about our travel tips are that you can trust they’re genuine.  We aren’t trying to push a sale on you or anything like what some of the other point guy(s) 😉 often do.  All of our free travel posts are simply a reflection of what my lovely wife and I are doing to try and see the world.

That being said, Lacey and I recently booked a trip to Orlando, Aruba, Curacao, and Miami for January 2017.  Our flights were taken care of by our Southwest Companion Pass, but we still needed some free hotel stays  to make this trip doable.  We already had 4 free nights with Hyatt Hotels to use in Aruba, which is awesome, but we still didn’t want to pay out of pocket for all of the remaining nights of our trip.  After a few hours of researching I discovered…drum roll…the Wyndham rewards Visa card.

Before stumbling on Wyndham’s site via Google, I had literally never heard of their rewards program.  I usually only see updates on the same 4 hotel rewards programs over and over;  Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott, and IHG.  At first glance, Wyndham’s bonus offer of 45k points didn’t seem very impressive.  In my experience, 45k points with any of the previously mentioned hotel chains would likely get you 1-2 nights at a shit hotel in a sketchy part of town.  This is not the case with Wyndham.  Every single one of Wyndham’s properties is a flat rate of 15k points per night.  Yes, this includes their most expensive properties.  No matter where you’re wanting to go, you’ll be able to book 3 nights with your 45k points.  Depending on where you book, you could save over $1,000 in free rooms with this reward.

This is how it works:

  1. Sign up for the card (here) – there is a $69 annual fee that will post on your 1st statement
  2. Use the card once and earn 30k points (posted to your account after 1 billing cycle)
  3. Spend $1,000 with this card in 90 days and earn another 15k points
  4. When your points post to your account, go shop for your hotel room at Wyndham.com3 Free Hotel Nights with Wyndham

Easy enough right?  Thanks Wyndham! 😉

Do yourself a favor and look at this list of the top Wyndham properties before booking your stay.  That’s where Lacey and I found this $330 per night resort we’ll be staying at on South Beach in Miami for free.  Spoiler alert, we’re going to put the extra money saved towards margaritas on the beach.  Sounds like a good investment to me!

Let us know if you have any questions!  Now go book a beautiful and expensive stay at a Wyndham property for free!

Huntington Beach Sunset

Travel

Our Weekend in Chicago

July 14, 2016

Chicago is quickly climbing up the ranks on our most favorite cities in the world list. The last 2 times we have visited, it seemed like the city, people, and weather have been teaming up to sweep us off our feet. Our most recent visit was no different. Again, with beautiful weather and friendly people, here’s how Lacey and I spent an early summer weekend in Chicago.

First off, I’m a big believer in managing expectations. If you’re expecting too much out of city, event, vacation, or anything else, odds are you’ll end up disappointed if it doesn’t live up to the hype. On the flip side, if you go into something with an open mind you have a greater chance of being pleasantly surprised. This was exactly the case with us and Chicago.  We had no expectations.  We just wanted to hang out and eat some pizza.

We stopped in Chicago this May on our way home from our 15 day Euro-Trip. The weather was absolutely beautiful at 65 degrees and sunny. We visited a few touristy locations such as the Skydeck at the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) as well as “The Bean” (Cloud Gate) in Millennium Park. Once again, we felt safe on public transportation and found everyone we were surrounded by on the streets and in restaurants to be welcoming and friendly.

We were lucky enough to stay at the historic Palmer House hotel during our weekend in Chicago. We had some Hilton Honors rewards to burn so we decided to use them in style. A funny thing I’ve noticed when we stay at fancy hotels for free is that the employees of the hotel react to us being there the same way Clark Griswold reacts when Cousin Eddy shows up for Christmas. All that aside, we enjoyed our stay and got back at the hotel a bit by “accidentally” sneaking into an executive lounge continental breakfast. Thanks for the free waffles Palmer House!

After breakfast, we walked over to Millennium Park to check out “the Bean“. While this has become a must see for travelers and instagrammers, we had actually never been there before. As with most pieces of art we’ve been lucky enough to visit recently, Cloud Gate (the bean) was much cooler in person than we expected it to be. We ended up hanging around it for about an hour. I snapped some funny pics of Lace rockin’ cheerleader moves in front of it that you can see below.

We left Millennium Park and hopped on a metro over to the Willis Tower where we had pre-purchased “Fast Pass” tickets to go up to the Skydeck on the 103rd floor. While pre-purchasing these tickets cost us about $20 more, it saved us at least 2 hrs of standing in lines. Totally worth it. The views of Chicago and Lake Michigan from the SkyDeck Lounge are crazy beautiful. While up there, we stepped out onto the “Skydeck Ledge” which is basically a glass cube that extends out from the building and over the city. It’s a pretty overwhelming experience.  As an added bonus, the 30th anniversary of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is this year, so there is a roped off area where you can stand next to Sloane Peterson and Cameron Frye mannequins and put your head on the glass in the exact spot Matthew Broderick (Ferris) did.  Getting to do this was super cool for me as I grew up with that movie.

After our nervous stomachs calmed down from being in the Skydeck, we decided it was pizza time. Eating at Gino’s East has become a “must-do” each time we visit this city. Their super deep dish, sauce on top of the cheese, traditional Chicago style pizza is amazing. Gino’s has been around for 50 years and has multiple locations but we always go back to the original restaurant on Superior Ave. This graffiti tagged, celebrity memorabilia filled pizza joint makes for a fun and authentic experience while waiting the standard 1 hour of required baking time for the deep dish crust. If you haven’t been, you need to stop by on your next visit to Chicago. If you’re with a group of 2-3 people, believe us, a medium pizza will be plenty.

Our weekend in Chicago was once again awesome. The only thing missing was a Cubs game at Wrigley Field. Unfortunately they were out of town 🙁 Next time Cubbies!

We’re becoming so fond of this city that we’ve already booked our next trip!

See you in January Chicago!

 

Let us know if you have any questions!

Click here to see our video edit from this trip.

Click here to see how we used rewards points to book this trip for free!

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend In Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Weekend in Chicago

Venture Meridian

Time for a Free Summer Vacation

July 6, 2016

Summer is definitely a time for exploration-whether trying out a new hobby, sampling a new cuisine, or checking out a new part of town, the long days allow for more time to dedicate to exploring.

This summer, we were fortunate enough to experience several new cities, attend multiple sporting events and enjoy cuisine from other countries, all while saving several thousand dollars! Thanks to credit card points, we took a 15 day time-out from our regular day to day and visited New York, Florence, Rome, Malta, Comino, Gozo and Chicago.

Our trip started with two days in New York staying at the Waldorf Astoria (for free, but more on that later) on Park Avenue. We spent our weekend eating delicious pizza in Brooklyn, attending a Yankees vs Red Sox game, visiting Wall Street and staring in awe and remembrance at the Freedom Tower. (full NY post)

From New York we flew into Florence, Italy and enjoyed riding bikes and scooters with friends, eating delicious heart-shaped pizza (you will see there is a pizza theme coming), visiting mind-blowing museums, gazing at the city from the Plaza de Michelangelo and walking up to the top of the Duomo. (full Florence post)

We took the train from Florence to Rome where we – surprise! – ate more pizza and explored museums and churches. The main reason for visiting Rome was to attend our first ever international sporting event-the Italian Open! This was such an amazing experience-from the lucky blue skies after a day of pouring rain, to nail biting tie breaker to complete the semi-finals match between Djokovic and Nishikori. (full Rome post)

From Rome we hopped a quick flight to the islands of Malta to meet up with friends and explore what this small country south of Sicily had to offer. Malta was quite possibly the most naturally beautiful place we have seen in person. One of the islands that make up Malta, named Comino, was surrounded by water so blue and so clear that it didn’t look real; it appeared man-made, as if someone had placed a teal colored dye in the water. Unbelievable. In Malta we visited the capital city of Valletta, the Blue Lagoon on Comino, the Azure Window on Gozo, cliff jumped at the local watering hole just outside of Marsaxlokk, saw the oldest known megalithic temples in the world, and tried octopus in the silent city of Mdina. Oh yeah, we also ate delicious pizza. (full Malta post)

To break up the trip home, we stopped for two days in Chicago and were lucky enough to have gorgeous weather! In our short time in Chicago we were able to squeeze in Millennium Park and take photos by Cloud Gate, aka the “bean”, go to the top of Willis Tower and eat traditional Chicago style pizza at Gino’s East. (complete details coming soon!)

This trip would not have been possible for us if we had to pay full price for it out of pocket. In total, by using credit card rewards points, we saved over $10,000 on this trip. We booked our flights to and from Europe for free. We stayed at luxurious properties like the Waldorf Astoria, Palmer House, and Hilton Malta for free. By utilizing credit card reward offers from American Airlines and Hilton, we were fortunate enough to have the 15 day (international) experience of a lifetime. Most anyone can do exactly what we do to earn free travel and everyone should at least take a look at how it all works.

As always, please check out Venture Meridian Magazine and show them some love for supporting us by letting us have our monthly column!

Venture Meridian Magazine April 2016

Brooklyn Sign

piazzale michelangelo florence

roman colosseum Rome, Italy

Malta Valletta Goza Comino Blue Lagoon M'dina

Travel

Off on our Big Trip!

May 18, 2016

Lacey and I are currently off on our biggest vacation adventure of 2016!  So far we’ve made stops in New York, Florence, and Rome.  We are currently on the beautiful island of Malta.  Tomorrow we head back to Rome for a full day before jumping on a flight headed for Chicago where we’ll spend the weekend.  While we’d love to give you all the details of our trip right now, we’re either out having too much fun or we’re too tired from having too much fun.  Believe us, we’ll give you more than enough of the details when we return next week. This may be forever known as our For now, you can keep up with what we’re getting mixed up in by checking in on our social media profiles. Links to our profiles are at the top of this page.

For those that don’t know, this is the biggest trip Lacey and I have ever booked with credit card rewards points.  We saved over $10,000 on this trip!  It’s super easy for anyone to do the same.  To see the full story on how we made this trip happen (for free-ish) check the link here.

We can’t wait to tell you about what we’ve experienced!

Azure Window Our Big Trip

Lifestyle

Get Free Stuff for Paying Your Bills

April 21, 2016

I’ll admit it.  At this point, I feel super entitled to free stuff.  I’ve put in a lot of time learning how to capitalize on credit card rewards points and now I can’t wrap my head around why I would ever pay for something, ANYTHING, and not get something in return for free.  Lacey and I pay with credit cards for literally every bill and expense we have.  Yes, this will now include mortgage payments. I’m going to tell you exactly how we do it because you should be getting free stuff for paying your bills too!

Before jumping right in and signing up for random credit cards to start paying your bills with; think about what your end goals are.  What do you want to get in return?  Look back on a previous post or two of ours that should help you decide on what card to sign up for to get a certain reward in return.

Once you select and receive the credit card that is going to get you the awesome reward you’re going for, you’ll want to create an online account with the bank that sponsors your new credit card.  For example, if you signed up for the Chase Sapphire card, you’ll create an online account at chase.com .  While logged in to your account, find where you can set up auto-pay.  It’s usually under a tab titled something like “manage payments”.  I would highly recommend you set auto-pay to pay off your entire balance each month.  This is an important step to make sure you don’t miss a payment and completely jack up your credit score (35% of your credit score is your payment history).

Now, take your new card and link it to every reoccurring monthly bill you have. Login to all of your online bill pay accounts for things like cable, internet, electricity, gas, water/sewer/trash, Netflix, iTunes, and anything else you can think of.  If you’ve never setup AutoPay for things like these don’t worry, it’s really easy.  Similar to how you setup your online account with the bank that provided your credit card, you’ll create an online account and set up auto-pay for each service you subscribe to.  Set your credit card as the payment source for every monthly bill you have. By doing this along with putting all of your day to day expenses on your card (groceries, gas, meals,etc), you’ll be shocked at how easily you’ll hit your spending requirements.

At this point, you may have figured out that your mortgage company and the bank you make your car payments to won’t allow you to pay with a credit card.  This totally sucks because these are likely your 2 biggest monthly bills and now you’re missing out on tons of reward points!  While most banks won’t accept credit card payments, they will accept checks.  There is an awesome service called Plastiq that will let you set up your credit card as a payment source while they will, in turn, send a check to whoever you need to pay. Boom goes the dynamite cuz you’re back in business!  While the Plastiq service does charge a 1-2.5% fee per transaction, if you sign up through our referral link you’ll get $200 of fee free payments.  Pretty cool of them to do that.

Is it worth the % fee that Plastiq charges for making your payments? Well, that’s up to you.  To put it in to perspective, let’s say your monthly mortgage payment is $2,000.  You’ll get charged about $40 to make the payment through Plastiq.  Let’s say in this example that you’re using the Southwest Premier card to make your payment.  For the $40 you spent to put $2000 on this card, you’ll reach the spending requirement and will get an estimated $650 worth of free flights within a matter of weeks after receiving the card.  You’ll be headed to Cabo, Jamaica, Costa Rica, Aruba, or any of the other awesome new locations Southwest now flies to.  So if you’re in a rush to hit the spending requirements on a credit card to get the bonus, it may be worth a few bucks to do it through Plastiq.

I hope this gets you started on a path that earns you awesome free stuff for every dollar you spend.  The next time you get an unexpected $1,000 bill…turn that around and get a free vacation out of it!  Good luck!  Let us know if you have any questions.

Free Stuff for Paying Bills

Turn your next unexpected bill into an unexpected vacation!

 

 

Rewards Points Travel

Southwest Airlines Companion Pass. The Golden Ticket!

March 27, 2016

I know Lacey and I are relatively new travelers, but I still can’t believe that we just recently found out about what I am now calling the Golden Ticket for couple’s travel.  A ticket so magical that not only will you have 110k miles to use yourself for free travel, but you will also be able to book a free flight for your travel companion at no extra cost EACH TIME you book a flight for yourself…drum roll…for up to 2 YEARS!!!  Yeah, you need to check this out.

The Golden Ticket is actually the Southwest Airlines Companion Pass.  Earning this reward is a bit tricky but it IS doable and it will be worth every bit of effort you put into it.  You will be eligible for this perk after completing 100 Southwest flights in a single year (which no one will do), OR by earning 110k Southwest Airlines miles in a single calendar year (which I’ll tell ya how to do).  Once you qualify for the companion pass, you will be able to book a free flight for your wife, husband, buddy, or whoever you deem as your “companion” for the rest of the year in which you earn the pass AND the entire next year.  Pretty huge right?

Southwest's Golden Ticket for Couples Travel

So here’s how you can earn the pass…

Assuming you won’t take 100 Southwest flights in a year to earn the pass, you’ll need to sign up for at least 2 of Southwest Airline’s credit cards at a 50k points offer for each card.  By going this route, you’ll be on your way to 104k points in no time (50k for each card + the points earned from the spending requirements).

As you can see here, Southwest’s public offer is only 25k points for both of the personal cards right now.  Don’t worry, there are still ways you can get 50k points for each of these cards.

For the Southwest Premier (personal) card, send us your email address and I’ll personally send you a referral that will allow you to sign up for the 50k card.  Send your email address to contact@ditchingnormal.com and we’ll send it your way! Sometimes it takes a couple of days, but nonetheless, you’ll get it!

For the Southwest Plus card 50k offer, UPDATED: we now have a referral link to this card! Here is our referral link to the 50k Southwest Plus card.  it’ll be a little trickier.  Since we don’t have the offer to email you for this one, you’ll have to find someone that does.  However, people are stoked to give out referrals to this as they will receive some bonus miles when you sign up.  Here is a site where people seem to be constantly posting referrals for this card.  Just scroll down to the comments on that site and make sure to look for people that have the 50k offer for the “Plus” card.  …this is actually how we received the 50k offer for this card.

So there ya go, you’re like 98% of the way there.  But wait, what about the other 6k points you need? While you can sign up for the Marriott card or Hyatt’s card, receive their bonus points and transfer them into your Southwest account, I don’t think this is the best way to go about it. What Lacey and I did was utilize Southwest’s online shopping portal.  You can quickly earn tons of extra points just by linking through their portal and shopping for stuff you were going to buy anyways.  We got an extra 5,500 points in 2 weeks by linking through the shopping portal to do our taxes and then to purchase a couple of other things for our bedroom at a 6 points per $1 spent offer.

Wrapping up, this is by far the best rewards offer that I am aware of at this point.  Depending on how much you utilize the Companion Pass once earned, it could be worth thousands of dollars in free flights.  Just think, all of your flights will be taken care of for up to 2 years!  You can switch your reward travel focus to only hotel points for a bit.

Some initial questions you might have…

Do I get to keep and use the 110k points I earned once I receive the Companion Pass? – YES!

Can I book my companion’s free flight even when I am booking my own flight with my points? – YES!

Can I use my companion pass with more than 1 companion? – YES! You can change your companion’s name up to 3 times.

Can I sign up for both credit cards at the same time? – from what I’ve researched, more often than not, it won’t work.  I would recommend waiting at least 30 days in between applications.  Keep in mind that Chase bank will no longer approve you if you have received 5 new credit cards in the past 24 months.

Southwest's Golden Ticket for Couples Travel

Southwest flies to some international spots now!

 

Best of luck everyone! Hit us up with any questions and if you’d like to receive the 50k Southwest Premier card referral!

We’re going to use our companion pass to get back to Cabo this fall!

Mat and Lacey Ocean DitchingNormal