The champagne bubbles are fizzed out, it’s 2017.  It was an absolute pleasure to share the last year with all (record number) of you and without revealing any soon to be announced secrets, it’s going to be an extremely exciting 2017 here. The most important function of this site is helping all of you to make the most of your journeys with great deals, tricks with miles and how to make the most of your travel loyalty. Here are a few key ideas to get you on the best footing for 2017…

#1 Sign Up For Loyalty Programs Even if You May NOT Use Them. Get Friends To Sign Up For Free Miles…

Want to use half the miles for twice as great of a flight? Want to save a fortune on an incredible hotel? Want to turn 40,000 points into 65,000 better points? These are all examples of things that regularly can happen IF you are ready before they start. Most of these offers require your loyalty account to be open for at least 14 days, so the best way to be prepared is to sign up in advance. We highly recommend opening an account (all for free) with: Iberia, Alaska Airlines, Starwood (SPG), Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt, IHG, Japan Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Korean Air and more. While you’re at it, get your friends to sign up too so that you earn points for each friend that participates. Free miles, and they get a bonus too…

#2 Take Time To Learn More Of The Language and Principles…

We try to keep things as clean cut and jargon free here as possible. There are however some certain concepts and terms which will really help you enjoy the site. Try to visualize many of the concepts and understand that: 1) you generally can’t convert one type of airline miles into other airline miles BUT you can use one type of miles to book flights on many partners. 2) points transfers generally only work one way. You can convert Amex points to an airline, but you can’t put them back into Amex. 3) A status match is a complimentary matching of your current elite loyalty program status, it allows you to keep your current status with no obligation to switch.

#3 Understand That The Best Deals Don’t Last, Act Quickly…

If I had a dollar for every email saying “do you think this deal will come back? I waited and then it was gone”; I’d be retired at the ripe age of 29. The deal world has shifted in recent years, where airlines and hotels offer extremely enticing deals for a window as short as an hour, with many lasting just 24 hours and all are subject to availability. One thing is for sure: if the deal is great, availability will fly. I’ve watched entire calendar weeks of flight and hotel deals disappear before my eyes because of indecision. Know that any deal that touches the US allows for a risk free 24 hour cancellation period. If a deal doesn’t touch the US simply move with haste. Don’t bookmark it for later. Immediately pull up your calendar, phone whoever you need to talk to and start the booking process, getting up to the payment page as soon as possible. 

#4 Diversifying Your Points Can Unlock Opportunity. Transferrable Points Are Best…

Many people lock into one type of miles or points earning program and there’s no way out. Much like your money, it’s good to diversify your portfolio and have points you can turn into other points. If you’re stuck with one airline or hotel’s points you have no recourse when they raise rates or takeaway opportunity. If you have credit card points with Amex, Citi or Chase or collect SPG points which can convert into more than 20 different types of airline miles you have safety. You can sidestep the bad rates. Look to supplement the non transferrable points you earn for your actual travels with transferrable points earned from your everyday spending. 

#5 Be First in Line For Every Opportunity And Deal…

We have a mailing list which goes out once weekly. I don’t like getting emails everyday so we send it as a nice recap of the week. Occasionally that leads to angry “customers” because they find out about an amazing deal on Sunday that they needed to book Saturday. The best way to make the most of GodSaveThePoints.com is to a) bookmark it b) check it during your commute or coffee daily c) add us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (where we post stuff we don’t even post on here). On Facebook you can also choose to get notified (just in the app) when we post something. By doing so you actually see our posts, whereas most people only see 1/4 of our Facebook posts, the way Facebook customizes your newsfeed. We also highly recommend Flipboard. You can save our articles and create your own (free) magazine of our info and stuff from other sites we love like ViewFromTheWing, LoyaltyLobby, LiveAndLetsFly

#6 Use Apps To Simplify The Things That Frustrate You And Keep You From Logging In, Finding Seats…

There are some amazing apps and services out there which can really help you. We of course have a post detailing many of our favorites, but a few are worthy of standalone mentions. AwardWallet is a great app to organize all your loyalty programs in one place. You’ll see expiration dates, updated balances and other pertinent details. For finding space to use your miles, seeing how many cheap tickets are left or scoring an upgrade there’s no better site than paid option ExpertFlyer.com. It allows you to search once and receive an email when and if what you’re looking for becomes available. As someone who is constantly pressing the “forgot login details” button, it also never hurts to grab an app that stores your login details and passwords. You could always just keep a book somewhere too. 

#7 Don’t Give Up. Miles, Points And Deals Really Make Dreams Come True…

Everyone wants to fly first class for free. The reason that’s still possible is that most people give up on making it happen. Too much effort, too complicated. We strive very hard to keep things simple, relatable and punchy to get you exactly what you want. Not every post will inherently appeal to you but the readers who prosper the most are the ones who try to comprehend the mechanisms being discussed, even if it doesn’t presently pertain to them. They also perhaps see if they can pull up a deal we mention themselves, even if they don’t intent to use it at the time, just to test their ability to read through what can seem like complex instructions. Finally, if this is all really new to you, make some “me” time and  hunker down with our beginners guide

#8 Stay On Top Of Your Personal Finances. Good Credit Creates Miles…

100,000 mile credit card bonuses sure are sweet. Getting the “we’re sorry” letter saying you’re ineligible for the card is not. It’s very easy to get lazy from month to month and forget to pay a bill, especially when you have a few cards. Just remember that the quickest and easiest way to earn miles is with a credit card and that without one you’ll be at a significant disadvantage. Monitor your credit, keep a spreadsheet of your due dates, set up online banking to stay alert to your accounts and spend responsibly. The “game” is earning miles for buying things you already need, turning what would be cash purchases into miles. Don’t over extend, don’t jump in too deep and don’t get too sucked in. You DON’T need every deal, every mileage sale or opportunity. You’ll know when you can’t pass something up.