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Make Your Dream Trip a Reality

Lesson 19 of 32

Become a VIP - Hotels

Chris Guillebeau, Stephanie Zito

Make Your Dream Trip a Reality

Chris Guillebeau, Stephanie Zito

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Lesson Info

19. Become a VIP - Hotels

Lesson Info

Become a VIP - Hotels

We are on lesson eighteen we've been talking all week about hotels how to book the hotel that's best for your dream trip remember start to finish thirty days from where you are to the destination of your dreams done so much this week all kinds of stuff about all kinds of stuff basically hotels today we're gonna talk about something that people have been really excited about just during the break people are saying I don't wanna hear about this so this is all about becoming a v I p or gaining elite status, you know, for me I had gold status at some point on star worried without actually staying it started much I think I got it, you know, six or seven years ago it was a benefit from a credit card or something. And at that time I never actually stayed in star hotels, mostly staying in budget hotels and hostels myself and I remember those early days of checking into a star would hotel when I would do it a few times a year, usually on my points and they would say, you know, welcome back, mr ...

gill abo you know, thank you so much for your loyalty and I would say great, thanks thanks for letting me stay in your hotel for free because I'm actually not very oil and then over time I became loyal but that made a huge difference for me is I got started so we want to help people uh march to the front of the line we want to help you shortcut your wayto hotel status and then we're gonna talk about this concept of status matching or completing a status challenge toe earn one status to rule them all we call it right because earning status can be difficult we're going to show you the hard way, which is the usual way we're going to show you a couple of easier ways a zwelling which like you how you can have one citizen leverage that as I said to rule them all so when we started we talked about these profiles we talked all about it could be a backpacker vacation is a jetsetter or even a backpacker both of us have stayed and all kinds of properties as we've discussed, you know, throughout the years hostels and so on, but we've also stating really nice hotels on dh so maybe as we begin this conversation would love to ask thean studio audience what's your experience if you have any experience at all with hotel status, anyone go to scott? Sure I inherited or was gifted hilton gold status for for a year, and so when I checked into the hilton in fort wayne, indiana, they gave me some free water I got free breakfast and they said thank you very much for your loyalty and I kind of chuckled like you did and I'm like thank you for the free water did they call you sir? Uh no, but they did. Mr mcmurray that's nice that's great. Any other experiences you have one I've worked in hotels and cruise ships around the world and been on the other side like we're like this this person is a guest and we love them but we really love like this person is like should be afforded every courtesy and they should be made field not only like amazing but like that they are it's weird to make classes but there there's there's another class and you should treated them very very very well so like I've seen that and definitely and still that in each of the companies in the groups to be like, treat them well yeah that's great. Any other stories of status of your duty status? Chin I said it's my mom has had and also my father but not personally because so far you said you've been seeing him or independent kind of put yes yeah yeah bill back in the traveling days of flying the concorde the hyatt group I spent a lot of time in the grand hyatt and jakarta actually but you know, you rack up a lot of a lot of benefits for the rest of the world you sure? Yes, I'm sure I have the same with matt have worked in the hospitality industry and no exactly all of the different statuses that exist and have always wondered. Ok, how do we get to that? E? I don't have any status. Ok? Yeah so, um I'm dying to hear more that's great. Ok, well, let's tell you more uh, maybe one of the things people always wonder is like, okay, what what's it all about? Does it matter? You know, should I even bother? I think it matters sometimes, and sometimes it doesn't don't know if you're mostly going to travel to indiana and get free water, it might not matter that much that's great, but if you're telling around the world, perhaps you're in hong kong, you want to make sure you have some status, you're gonna have amazing experience definitely for sure if you're traveling frequently so so amenities and benefits can vary considerably depending on the property depending on status level. But just as a general rule, you can usually expect late checkout sometimes early check in as well. Early checking is more of a courtesy, but late checkout in some cases is actually a a listed benefit like you actually have the rightto stay in your hotel until four pm, often with some of the chain's free internet room upgrades those were always prioritized on a variety of different things, but elite status kind of jumps the queue all the way to the top free breakfast depending on the status level depending on the property lounge access what we're going to talk about airline lunches later but mentioned some hotel lounges as well on dh when you go to a lounge there's often a nice evening meal there's drinks there might be afternoon tea sometimes it might not be very elaborate elaborate too extravagant but other times it might on sometimes you get amenities as well. This is kind of fun because these really very considerably so I love the story of the free water bottle I've gotten a lot of free water balls as well, but then one time I went to djibouti and which is in east africa you know djibouti yeah tell that to everybody from djibouti great ana so they actually brought me an entire liquor cabinet for my minibar pretty fun because it's one of the benefits was complimentary mini bar but normally it's like a couple of bottles, you know? And I got an entire like leader of of all these, like five leaders that was there for two nights I don't check baggage, I don't check any luggage I couldn't take them with me, but it was it was a great three days tell you tell you that when you've had some amazing communities around the world, sometimes each of us have been staying in a hotel, like on our birthday. Would anyone like a birthday cake? That last picture was actually a snack that was delivered to me in a star would property in buenos aires on matt wants to goto patagonia, it was on my trip to patagonia, I was on the way over there, and I had a late flight, and so it was past my four pam check out, and so I had to wait for, like, an hour in the lounge, and they brought me that little snack class one we'll play, so I didn't have to, you know, be hungry while you waited, like one time, I think you got a birthday cake for me one time. Stephanie, we're staying in a property somewhere in the world and emirates, this is a blackout on black hat because you somebody else khun, stay sometimes when you're yeah, a little, but, you know, I actually had booked to stay for her for some reason she was in dubai happened to be on my birthday. I was there, I wasn't there, I was in the states and she sent me a picture of a birthday cake that was sent to me. Like happy birthday, chris and then he got the credit for me staying that I got the credit. Okay, so if you're going eso breakfast I thought was interesting, you know? Can a couple lessons ago she was talking about well, a nice hotel breakfast, you know, in paris might cost, like, twenty dollars. I don't want to pay twenty dollars, a nice hotel breakfast and a lot of places can cost forty or fifty or sixty dollars. I know it's crazy, but sometimes it actually can on dh when you have a lease status in these programmes often, that is entirely compton. They will often bring you a bill that you have to sign and so it really is crazy. You just sign there it's like forty eight dollars and you know, when you add your tip whatever, but then that that entire charge is removed from the account so that's very, very helpful, you know, in the long term it's everywhere sometimes you can even get room service breakfast. Yeah, sometimes some places. So before we go on, maybe a workbook activity is tick is tio think about that hotel property, your hotel group that you signed up for when we started. Maybe you signed up for more than one just to get familiar with the benefits of elite status that are available if you work toward it that way you'll know if it's something you're interested in are it's not super important sharing mentioned that she knows like all the different levels and everything that you get so you don't have to know everything but just kind of familiarized what's up with that and then when we're trying to choose an elite program how do we do decide there's a couple different things to look for it I can make my slide work good benefits you know through the birthday cake that won't actually say that on the website like you got a birthday cake but um but yeah it just happens I think the things that toe look for our you know at what levels what different kinds of benefits do you get um a low barrier to entry that's one of the great things to look for like is it kind of how long's it gonna take you is is getting this status actually accept accessible low barrier to entry just mention a point on that about marriott hotels does anyone stay in marriott's ever great marriott fans fans I think marriage is a great brand actually like their hotels thie award program is extremely difficult it has a very high barrier to entry so I don't actually stay with mary very often because of that I think I forget the precise number but it's something like seventy five nights a year or something that you have to before you really get any benefits that air valuables that's why I tend to steer people toward other programs so but how do you find that balance between good benefits and low barrier to entry right? So looking for that and then I think it's also important the locations you want to stay so if you are primarily traveling to africa it's probably worth while seeing like what the of the different hotel groups were looking at which one of that which ones of them have good properties in some of the region's you're planning to travel to longer term not only just for your dream trip status really helped you longer term um and then there's some properties like in different places in europe there's some, um there's some properties that are more common than others there's some property groups have hotels in more areas more commonly than other. So if you're planning on spending a lot of time in australia, you're probably better off looking at a program like a core because there's a mercury er and a so patel and all of their whole property chain is all over in australia and sometimes it might be harder to find a chain there so the locations you want to stay consider that when you're also looking into status because if you have the status you want to make use of it absolutely so a couple different ways to earn status I think I might have actually mess up my slides here okay, I'll put you with both points I'm great eso there's the hard way which is what most people do and that is, you know, staying a lot of nights every year usually you're doing all of those nights or stays without status it also takes a long time before you actually earn it. Once you have status, you do have to have to requalify so often in the long term you might have to stay a lot of nights, but just to get it, you don't always have to do it the hard way on easy ways to do it through a status match or challenge, which is what we're going to talk about. And then my unconventional bullet point here in the middle is the credit card fast track, which we've alluded to a little bit I think we're gonna have a bunch of examples about that just going quickly here in a moment so that's the hard way earning status a lot of hotels have an average like I said, marriott is extremely high but an average tow earn the highest status, which is usually called diamond or platinum it would be twenty five stays or fifty nights in a year we'll tell you the difference for that in a moment actually tell the difference for that right now um stay is each time you check in or out of a hotel and a night is every night you stay at a hotel, so does that make sense? I've got an example right here if you go to a hotel and you spend one night there that one's day and one night if you go to a hotel and you stay for the whole week, it's five nights or six nights or seven nights or whatever and still once day, right? So every time you check in and checkout that's considered a state you can't check out and then check every people always ask this like, if I have a three night state, can I check out and check back in? No, unfortunately you can't they've actually gonna figure that out you can do a mattress run, which we'll talk about it some point, so this leads to a problem it's actually a lot of nights ah, a lot of people watching this or like, you know, I actually don't know fifty nights a year in the hotel I'm just trying to get my dream destination whatever totally understand that, uh, that's why? For every travel problem, there is an unconventional solution and we'll talk about a few of them here, so one of them that I loaded too was the credit card fast track ah lot of credit cards actually kind of skipped the whole process on dh give their card holders the same benefits that people have to spend twelve or fifteen sometimes twenty five nights or arm or a year for I won't talk about all these, but just to make you aware that high it taste carb you mentioned a couple of times gives free platinum status I chase card gives free platinum status as well. So one status is with hyatt and one status is with sg and by the way, these air for life, these air for life as long as you have the card. All right, so it's not just for a year, some exceptions, but all of these er for life, hilton city gives you free gold status. Ironically, with hilton the gold is just about as good as diamond, which is their highest one with the gold, you actually get free breakfast and free internet and room upgrades and lounge access upon availability. So in some ways it's not even worth it trying to go to the higher tier, you have that one that's good enough. If you have the mx platinum cards, you get free starwood gold status it's a little bit confusing. If you have the starwood card, you don't actually get gold status if you have the starwood card, it does help in giving you two stays every year for each card, you have to have a personal card in a business card, so we talked about how if you're trying to maintain platinum status with star, but it requires twenty five days if you have both cards, it takes for those days, and they give you nice as well. More than four nights in tuesday's morning tuesdays and fortnight's for each of those links to all those cards. So there's one more marriott chase gives you silver status links to all those cars are available on cards for travel dot com or of course, you could just go directly to the issue if you want chris, I think, also skipped over the fairmont slide asian. I put that one in there, it's, way back e I put that one in there because a lot of the canadians might be interested in fairmont and that one doesn't compute status. It gives you free nights as well kind of like the starwood amex, and when we were talking about the problem and unconventional solutions, we were going to tell them about our mattress run because, like chris said, you can't check in to ah the same hotel more than once during this day, but say you're staying somewhere for, you know, three or four nights, this doesn't work everywhere this works. Best when you don't have a lot of luggage because you have to move it a lot on also, maybe when the hotel's aaron relative proximity yeah, seattle is actually a pretty great place for this. So example, if you are staying, if you want teo, if you're trying to get status at a hyatt property here, there's a hyatt there's two hyatt, center across the street from each other, you can't stay in one high it um, if you're staying for nights, you can stay and the one high at one night, you can move across the street for the next night. You can move across the street for the next night and you could move back for the fourth night so you can get four stays if you need extra steak credits because sometimes it's harder to get stays than it is to get night, right? And if you don't want to move back and forth every night, you could do to and to or you could just move once like if you're coming in late with you, stay at an airport property or something, then you move to your other hotel in the city the next day, so it's not always about trying to game it is trying it's about saying how can we be strategic? You know, to work toward the goals that way and he can also move to hotels in different property groups say you're trying to maintain both hilton and I g status and you know washington dc is actually a great place for this because there's so many hotels in the same area you can stay in a star, would hotel for a couple of nights and then move across the street too are the hilton and move across the street to the a g it's great after the last creative life course we did a trip to las vegas both of us had to work on our highest status. So we did a little trip to las vegas and stayed in a variety of different places, a lot of hotels and super cheap as well I think it's a great place to turn those qualifying nights, especially in the middle of the week, right? Because nobody's there, uh, status match okay, so once you've achieved a status any normally any status, even if it's been calm this is important, so you may not have to say fifty nights, but you somehow you were in this status you can use that status toe leverage another status. Basically, what you do is you go to the other property group or the other hotel group and you asked them there's usually a formal process for it you basically say, look, I have this great status from one of your competitors I would want to stay more with you, but I don't have status with you, can you, max my status and this is very common in the industry and the like the policies and protocol varies considerably, but if you go to this website, status matter dot com basically kind of put in your information like what you have and what you're looking for. It will tell you exactly what you need to do all right, some hotels are super super generous about this, some of them you just kind of show them you like great your elite with us for the next five years. You know, others kind of actually make you work for it, and that leads to the next part I was going to just save that hotel chain. They're elite hotels, it's actually a european hotel chain. Any of you want to go to scandinavia on your dream trip or any of you are watching from from scandinavia or planning to travel there elite hotels is one of the ones that actually most people have really high one hundred I think they have one hundred percent status matching so it's a great one to look at and um it's incest matter dot com you can check the you can check the percentage of people who've actually succeeded in matching their status. It's really helpful and so it's also good, I don't know if we might cover this later, but I'll just kind of allude to it now why would you want tohave? Ah, status of a place you might not actually stay, because maybe you could use that for something else, right? If you had accomp status from any particular program and you could use that, you know, maybe later on next year or something, you need a status match so often it's good to do this even if you don't have an immediate plan for it. And then, as I said, some hotels, some hotel groups won't just give you the status right away. What kind of offer to meet you halfway and basically what they say, like you say, you know, I have this status, I want to start, you know, applying it tio, this hotel group, and they say, okay, that's great, but we don't want our members who earned the status, the hard way to complain, you know, about all these free status is that we're giving out, so we've created this compromise is called a status challenge we're during a certain period of time if you meet certain criteria and you earn a certain number of stays or nights but usually much fewer then you would have to for a year then they will give you the status so I believe you did this you can you can learn about that on status match dot com as well I actually did this last year I have had starwood platinum status which is starwood's highest status level I've had it for a number of years and I was staying at more hi it's and I had a hyatt platinum status from my credit card but I was going I was going be staying at more hi it's and so they have ah hyatt diamond challenge that they run and so they were doing it last year and the they said if you can complete twelve knights not stays twelve knights in ninety days you can have hyatt diamond status and during that time well you can have the status to try out. So while you're spending those twelve knights you can you'll be staying as a hyatt diamond guest and so I thought okay, well this is great I have big trip to asia coming up and so I spent four nights I think in a couple of really nice hi it's in hong kong bill and then I came back to the states and I got really busy and I kind of forgot about it and then I thought and then I remembered and I looked it up and I thought, oh no, I have I have eight I have eight, seven or eight nights left and I've gone through all this trouble and I really, really want to get this status is it worth? And I thought, where could I go where I wonder where the cheapest high it is that I could fly tio this is kind of out of control or is this just might be out of control, but it also happened to be when I was writing upgrade unlocked the uncommitted she died two luxury travel on a budget and I thought maybe I need a writing retreat, you know, it's perfect, I'll be earning my hyatt diamond status while I'm writing a book on luxury trouble, staying in the cheapest, staying in the cheapest high and I could find stay here pay here I'm looking for a pay here place because I need it's strategic, I'm trying to run, so I actually found that the hyatt place in boise, idaho, was one of the cheapest high it's that's out there and you knew exactly and so in hyatt in their rules and if you pay for your hotel with points, it does not count towards your elite status um in some property groups when you pay for with points, it does count with elites for elite status but in hae it when you pay with points in cash, it also counts for elite status. So I was paying, I think, like two thousand points plus, like, thirty five dollars a night or something. And I was like that's worth it. And I made the final decision as I was, I thought, okay, where can I go with this? What boys is there? And I thought maybe I could call someone and see if they could just check me in and then I could just pay for it. And then I googled it, and I'm like three hundred and fifty miles from portland. I'm gonna get in my car and drive. So I got in my car and I drove to boise and I spent a week there and it was it was a really phenomenal trip. It was it's actually a really great little hotel. And I earned my hyatt diamond status while I was there. And some of the benefits of that are anytime I stand high it. Now I get lounge access, I get free breakfast, I get four o'clock, check out I get four sweet upgrades per year, and they confirmed those in advance so I can call and say, you know, is there a suite available in your hotel and I did a big job in germany last year and it was the first time I got to use my diamond status after I earned it through this and I stayed I was stayed at the hyatt regency in dusseldorf and I had this gorgeous suite on the top floor with windows all looking over the harbor right next to the lounge where they served like german wines all day and night and I was like yes, it was definitely we're spending the weekend boise that's a great story and you're paying thirty five dollars a night and it didn't cost me very much and the value that I'm getting out of having that hyatt diamond status is definitely worth it to me. Excellent. So if there's a quick example of starwood if you're interested in that they actually have a policy where you emailed platinum dot liaison at starwood hotels dot com if you miss that don't worry about it we'll put it up on they'll set you up and I think we're star right it's it's something like eighteen paid nights or something over ninety days so each each property group has its own thing if you go to status natural dot com you'll get all the information sometimes it's a great thing maybe it's not a great thing it just defend on your situation my status is certainly great, so we've got to just talk this out a little bit before we do that dream check challenge we'd like to talk with someone about their dream destination and their planned hotel stays and I'd love to bring up bill can we bring you back to the hot seat bill great come on up theo welcome back. This is your usual seat here thinking just so one brothel I think great that's right that's what you're looking for one am something next time so when we last talked you're planning this trip to hong kong with your wife like travel there before on business and now you're looking about me to go back for a different kind of experience and I think you mentioned you're hoping to travel on singapore airlines yep cathay pacific or singapore preferences singapore I'm good with that okay actually right okay so where we going to stay when you're there you thought to this you know I'm still trying to track down which hotel it is because there's an infinity pool to die for on the column side of the harbour looking across the sky scape of downtown and the water is basically disappearing into downtown is what it looks like and I haven't have to still research to figure out if they've changed names but that's the one I have in my mind on callen and there's a lot of good proper right on the water looking straight in hong kong is a wonderful hotel market like that especially if you have elite status because there's so many like so many hotels that really get the whole service and preferential treatment right so okay so cal inside do you have any hotel status at all you know I used to and that's now resurrected some pretty share away miles last night I'm getting ready to you know resurrects on my hotel status is because you know so many nights in high it's particularly the grand hyatt jakarta but you know jai it's everywhere and I had fairmont high status standing firm on san francisco that's great fairmont in singapore if you have a stopover ok yeah on the releasing of berlin's uh so I'm open for recommendations accommodation yeah what what would you recommend for go well the hyatt regency there's two great well then actually three great heights and in hong kong but the hyatt regency in hong kong on the cal inside also has a really great view and they do that light show at night it's really fun you can watch it from the lounge and that's a great place for status it's also a great place if you're displaying through hong kong it's a nice hotel kris I believe states at the grand hyatt I've never stayed there yeah yeah that was actually super close to the airport on the train now don't they have the train when you were there last superstar was trailing there before the new airport okay, that was a really scary here between the apartment built um way pretty much every one of the hotel groups that we've talked about this far has a really good property there in hong kong I also stay at the w hong kong that I really like I'm not a huge w fan in general, but they're in hong kong I really really like that property so it's also great we haven't talked at all about the ritz carlton but the ritz carlton in hong kong I believe have has the world's highest bar I have never stayed there, but I have played there it's on the calendar side it's actually right next to the w and there are, um I'm not actually sure about the the ritz carlton benefits from the credit card, but there is a really great ritz carlton credit card that it's like one hundred something points, which is enough for, like, one three nights at the ritz carlton, right? Right transfers to marry on believe because back in the nineties it seemed like a lot of the hotel points I was building up, I was transom about transferring back to airlines, so I really didn't, you know, concentrate on these kind of strategies, but I got a lot of benefits, the room of bottles of champagne and and the amenities you know, we talked about we joked about the bottle of water and the indiana as thie amenity but in a lot of these hotels in asia specifically because there's such a high standard of hospitality in the asian tourism market you wouldn't believe the amazing the amazing service and just the class service in the things that that you get from your creative piece that we were treated like a pipe don't have status at all like you're gonna have a great experience regardless like you really will but I think was a carrier, matt was they maybe not said earlier like there is a different level, you know if you have the status like a lot of the hotel employees particularly in asia and the middle east well kind of go out of the way to recognize that so I mean as your kind of way we still have some lessons to go every night you go away to resurrecting these miles you've been talking to your wife you said you had a story the other day about how you called her and said don't buy the vacuum cleaner by the concluding until I tell you exactly how the purchases to get the most possible points so we don't tell you exactly what to do, but we definitely won't help maybe and maybe someone in our facebook group because there's people around the whole world maybe someone in our facebook group knows the name of the hotel with the infinity pool on anybody now decide where the infinity pool hotel is give us a shot otherwise I'm gonna look at that ok that's great. Any questions on become a v I p yes please listen I have some confusion over when you get elite status is it just for years? Some of it sounds like it's permanent and you get with your card so great I'm glad you asked that I don't think I don't think I clarified that well, normally the elite status is valid for the rest of the year going into about february or march when they do that kind of reset if you qualify at the end of the year that it's going to balance all the way through the next year I keep looking stephanie just saying chris on that slide chris said life lifetime and what he meant is the lifetime that you keep the credit card the lifetime of the cards yeah, so with basically if you have the card it's an annual elite status but it will renew annually as long as you have the card that makes more sense. Okay, tell me later if I can clarify further, I'm sorry. Uh, just one question you mentioned one status to rule them all. Is there an uber status that you strive for? I mean, is it the high ed or is it the hill know that the only status that I strive for is lifetime platinum status with starwood so and that's that is a good aspirational status you have to have had two status for ten years we're star right and have five hundred nights I still have a long way to go for that so when I actually said once that is to rule them all I'm talking about this principle of matching between programs and if I get one status then I can just go out and, you know, match with that and that's without a match about to see whatever my needs are, um card that you use, you get a night or two free um per year do those expire within that year or uh, capsule you're usually one year or something. I think I think it's actually a little bit confusion from that point the night that you get it's not a free hotel night it's the nope it is it's a credit so you need twenty you need ten state tense ten stays or twenty five nights to reach gold status and starwood or twenty five nights in fifty twenty five stays in fifty nights to reach platinum status and so you get you get to stay credits and four night credits towards your status were you asking about ice to you though, okay, so you aren't actually getting any free hotel nights okay? You're getting credit towards your status yeah, sorry. Condition that's another questions like, for example, like the hyatt. You know, you talk about your stay in boise, help a high. Is it like the hyatt place in the hyatt house? Those all count towards the hiding. Wei looked at those nine hotel brands. In lesson, I believe. Fourteen. That first lesson over this week. If you stay at any of those brands that are part of that property group, they count towards that group's status. So that's, another strategic things from when we were talking about stay here, play here. If you if you're trying to do mattress runner, get some extra nights in fact, this year for my hiatt, my starwood platinum status. It was the end of december, and I was one night short and I checked myself into the sheraton four points in in the east side of portland, oregon, because it was the cheapest starwood hotel that I could get into. So I could make sure I had my status for the year. So any property counts within the group it's a real quick, just kind of picking back that. So what would be like the prime time? That you will want to earn your status to get the maximum amount of time? So you mentioned, like, end of the year you see my mind, I think I know exactly what you're asking I don't know if I have a precise cherie has the best answer for sure does that work started? Forget where they do their date it's in a while that's a good answer would have to come back to you on that. So I'm gonna come back to you on that? I'm gonna post that answer online for other people to know exactly what you're asking cool, awesome! We could talk about being a v I p for a long time, but making we may continue to reference it in future lessons we want to know what's the most important thing that you guys learned today, I think that with something that I never even thought about was like a calm breakfast. So, like, I know that when I'm tryingto in my amateur hacks on the aggregators just looking and being all like expedience five dollars cheaper than booking dot com like I'm such a wizard and then in the morning you go when you spend thirty dollars each for two people on breakfast, so like you do the math and you're still a muppet so like if you if I do it, if I like, get calm breakfast than I can do math and things work out well, so that's really great listen about the status match before and prior to like this less and I was like I don't know about that I don't think I could do that but now I like how you guys broken down it sounds very doable um if you know inspiring and you're able to do it the right way can't be done so elite status I would have wouldn't have crossed my mind too find the cheapest one in their chain group you know because you automatically think well what's around me so if you go a little bit outside you know and pay a little bit cheaper easily doable for me I was lucky that I happened to be able to drive there but I actually thought it was gonna be in denver and I was prepared you know, when we were talking about flights last week and I think kurt shared with us like oh yeah I went toe flew to haiti for the day you know I was just like I've miles I could you know pop over to denver actually probably could have used my british airways miles to fly to boise really cheaply but I drove but you could just pop somewhere and you know state the cheapest place high place boys is gonna be so booth course you've been binge watching you make your reservation people are gonna be like hi place boys like two hundred dollars a night why's that what's the most important thing so one thing, when you were there at the four points, did you use miles in cash, my points in cash? I don't believe I did points in cash. That's. The big thing for me is you still get your status? Yep, yeah, actually, on that, stay, I may have actually used just points because starwood counts point stays towards elite status, and at the lower levels of I mean starwood's. One of their star would four points, is one of the lower lower level brands alot and brands of the start with properties. And so often the four points aren't that expensive, so I actually might have just used points.

Class Description

Who wouldn’t love to know how to earn enough miles and points for two airline tickets and three hotel nights? In Make Your Dream Trip a Reality, Chris Guillebeau and Stephanie Zito can show you how it's done. 

Travel feeds our creative spirits, allows us to discover new viewpoints, and fuels our work. In this class, you’ll find out how you can make your dream of journeying to the world’s most far-flung places a practical and affordable reality.

Chris and Stephanie have made it their life's mission to help others experience all the thrill and adventure that world travel can offer. In Make Your Dream Trip a Reality. 

Chris and Stephanie will help you: 

  • Master the system of Frequent Flier miles and hotel points
  • Set up a personal points-earning strategy – even if you don’t fly
  • Upgrade your dream vacation experience at no cost to you

In short, daily lessons, Chris and Stephanie will cover all aspects of how to plan your vacation including financing your trip. You’ll learn how to set your savings and point-earning strategy so you are armed with everything you need to relax and enjoy your vacation once you depart. They’ll teach you how to book flights and hotels so you get the very best experience at the absolute best rate. You’ll also get insider tips from professional globetrotters on traveling solo and as a family.

By the end of this course you’ll learn everything you need to know to save money, minimize hassle, and make the most of your travel experience.

Your dream destination, and a life of regular traveling, is now available to you – no matter your budget. 

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

40 Ways to Use Ultimate Rewards Points

Dream Trip Workbook

7 Habits of Highly Effective Travel Hacking Couples

Dream Trip Credit Card Tracker

Upgrade Unlocked Sneak Peak

10 Tips for Travel Hacking Families

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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Highly recommended! This is one of the best CreativeLive courses I've ever taken and a great value. There's a lot of excellent information here, presented in a fun and accessible way. The CL "boot camp" approach was perfect for this topic because it dispenses the material in bite size pieces with very doable action steps along the way. The corresponding Facebook group adds even more value and camaraderie. It's a great place to clear up any questions or confusion that may come up. What an amazing resource! By the end of the course, not only will you have learned a tremendous amount, you will actually have something tangible to show for it!

a Creativelive Student

This is a fabulous course. Stephanie and Chris are both so knowledgeable, helpful, and easy going. They clearly love and practice what they're teaching. And they're open to learning from the students too. The course is packed with information, delivered in an immediately useful way. In fact, they emphasize again and again that the point is to USE the information to REALLY take your "Dream Trip" soon! The Facebook group is the best I've ever experienced with an online course. Stephanie and Chris are remarkably present, responsive, understanding, and generous with their knowledge and experience. I highly recommend this course.