With 2013 just starting, I decided to put together a list of deals and promotions in the travel world that appeared (or didn’t appear) in 2012 that I’d love to see this year! Feel free to comment below to add to the list. Let’s hope this is a good year to take advantage of the points and miles world!
- US Airways Grand Slam promotion – While this promotion took a year off in 2012, I really really really hope to see it back in 2013. This was an easy way to earn an almost free domestic ticket, and for a little bit more effort and money you could get up to 100,000 miles. Off the top of my head I spent about $200 for 70,000 US Airways miles – I was also able to get some great Biscoff spread which I still have!
- Hyatt Faster Free nights - This has been a promotion that I do not believe has been around since 2012. However, prior to that they had it at least once a year since the early 2000′s. This is probably the BEST promotion out of all hotel chain promos. I was able to take full advantage of this promotion 4 times while I was actually traveling every week for business and pulling 1 night stays at Hyatts. This got me free nights in Hawaii (Kauai and Maui), Bali, Vietnam, Newport Rhode Island, Toronto, and Montreal. Unfortunately, I am not holding my breath for this one. And after seeing the free hotel nights I got, maybe I can see why! Although, there was a lot of money spent at Hyatt hotels to get these free nights and it made me a very loyal Hyatt person.
- American Airlines Double Miles and/or Double Elite Qualifying Miles - This is a promotion that has been consistent for the past few years, so I really hope we see it again this year. My husband was able to get Platinum status due to this promotion. It’s also great for the airlines as it gets people to fly American more.
- American Express Small Business Saturday - Consistent for the past two years and my assumption is that it will be here to stay. This was a great way to get $25 for free with your American Express card while supporting a small business in your town! Since the husband and I have 6 Amex cards in total, I was able to get $150 in gift cards to a local restaurant.
- American Express Syncing promotions – There has been some great ones in 2012, but currently is semi dry. Let’s hope for some more great opportunities through 2013! My personal streak of American Express free money is well over $1,000!
- American Express Gift Chain – This one took a break in 2012, but was a great promotion for those that had Amex cards in 2011. This really helped me earn some free money by shopping in stores I would have already! I think I ended up with about $600 in Amex gift cards which I liquidated through Amazon Payments, and then gift cards to Pottery Barn and REI which would have been/will be used anyways.
- 100,000 Mile/Point credit card sign ups – Right now the only one that qualifies is British Airways if you meet the qualifications, but aside from that pickings are slim. I have high hopes for Capital One since they’ve been running a 100,000 point promotion the past two years. I’d also love to see some other limited time offers from Chase (Sapphire, Ink, and Plus). Last year, I was only able to get on the British Airways up to 100,000 point promotion.
- Delta Sky Mall 25,000 mile promotion - A great promotion in 2011, but unfortunately skipped in 2012. I was able to purchase Samsung Galaxy tablets, resell them, and ended up with 100,000 Delta miles for $600. I already used 50,000 of those miles last year for a ski trip out west for me and my husband – tickets would have cost close to $400 each.
- Club Carlson Big Night Giveaway - Three different versions of this promotion have run in the past year and a half. First we saw a 50,000 points after any stay at a U.S. Radisson hotel. Then we saw an opportunity to stay at a total of 4 different Club Carlson brands anywhere in the world, for between 44,000 and 50,000 points. And just this last fall, you received a free certificate after one stay, to expire 1 year after it was earned. My personal favorite was the #2 promotion where we were able to earn close to 200,000 points and very little spent out of pocket!
- SPG Free Night promotion – Summer of 2011, Starwood was giving guests 1 free night to use after ever 3 stays for any cat 1-6 resort hotel 7 nights a weekl. The summer before (2010), guests could receive 1 free night after every 3 stays to use at any SPG cat 1-6 hotels for weekend stays only. Summer of 2009 was when this promotion was first announced and you could receive 1 free night after every 2 stays to use at cat 1-6 hotels for weekend stays only. I took full advantage of this promotion in 2009 and earned a bunch of free nights due to business stays – these stays were used in London and Stockholm. Unfortunately I think this promotion is long over as it was skipped in 2013.
Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.