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Thursday Giveaway: 26,000 US Airways Miles And The Winner of 25,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards Points

by on October 3, 2013 · 565 comments

in Thursday Giveaway, US Airways

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Earlier this week, US Airways announced their 100% Share Miles bonus. Now through October 15, 2013, you’re able to share miles, and the person receiving them, will receive a 100% bonus.

This week's Thursday Giveaway is inspired by the Share Miles promotion.

This week’s Thursday Giveaway is inspired by the Share Miles promotion.

If you were to purchase miles, they normally cost 3.5 cents each plus a 7.5% tax, and sharing miles costs 1 cent each plus a $30 processing fee and 7.5% tax. The cost drops to just about 1.1 cents per new mile created via the bonus, since you are paying the share miles costs and fees, but generating twice the miles. For example, sharing 50,000 miles would cost you $567.50, and you’d be generating a bonus 50,000

With that in mind, for this week’s Thursday Giveaway, I’m going to be sharing 13,000 of my US Airways miles, which means you’ll receive 26,000 US Airways miles into your account if you win.

How to Enter

It’s simple – just leave a comment below telling me how you have helped someone in the past with miles and points, or how someone has helped you. It can be anything from getting a relative to a family reunion or event, or using your miles to bring your friends along on a fun vacation. It could be helping a random seatmate rebooking their flights on your iPad after an IROP so they wouldn’t misconnect, or giving your first class upgrade to a uniformed member of the military and how you went about it doing it. Whatever the scenario is, I want to hear!

You have until 5pm ET on Monday, October 7, to enter. Then Team TPG will go through them and choose a winner and announce it next week. The winner must have a US Airways account that is at least 12 days old to participate (per the rules of the transfer bonus!). Only one entry per person will be permitted.

And the Winner of the 25,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards Points Is…

Last week's giveaway was for 25,000 Rapid Rewards points.

Last week’s giveaway was for 25,000 Rapid Rewards points.

For last week’s Thursday Giveaway, I decided to reward one lucky reader with 25,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards points. The point of the contest was to tell me whom you’d bring along on your Companion Pass. 

To enter, you had to be following me on Twitter and send me a tweet telling me whom you’d bring along on your Companion Pass and why and include the hashtag#TPG25KGiveaway.

Congrat's to this week's winner!

Congrat’s to this week’s winner!

Many people said they would bring one of their kids, or their significant other, and the winner of the contest, chosen at random, is Angela Caraway, who tweeted:

@thepointsguy #tpg25kgiveaway I would bring my husband to the Gulf Coast to surprise my family! He needs to see where I grew up! #missnmom

Congrats Angela! We’ll be in touch shortly and hope you’ll be able to take you’re husband to the Gulf Coast. Thanks to everyone who entered and good luck in this week’s giveaway!

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Joe S.

    How I used my miles this past month to give someone something they would never have easily been able to experience. I used my miles to send my sister and her new (first..haha) husband to France and Spain for their Honeymoon. They flew Air France in Business BOS-CDG-BOD. Their return was in Lufthansas new First Class BCN-FRA-ORD. They utilized the First Class Terminal at Frankfurt. Now, I fly around the world in business all the time (SA, OS, LH); they do not. Neither has even been outside Economy. They said it was the best flight experience of their lives. It was such a pleasure for me to be able to do this for them.

  • Robert P

    Just this week, I’ve gotten my dad to use his Diamond Upgrades, from the Diamond Challenge he has been doing at Hyatt, to get a suite for him and my mother at the Calgary Hyatt Regency. Furthermore, I contacted them through twitter and they are doing a great job of treating them very special. On top of all this, I got him to register for the Hyatt Fall Promotion and he is taking in a ton of points that I’ve shown him how to redeem in properties in Vegas (they love Vegas).

  • Lea

    Taking my family and in laws for a vacation in Miami Beach, Florida

  • Ron

    I’m using miles to fly my wife’s parents to visit us over Christmas.

  • Jonathan

    My wife wanted to go to the national conference for teachers in DC and didn’t think we could afford it. I surprised her with a free flight and hotel stay so she could go (I’ve been saving those miles and points for a guys trip to Vegas)

  • babyshark31

    I flew my Mom to Vienna using my US Airways miles so that we could spend a great long weekend there. It was such a great trip that I’ll never forget and it’s all thanks to miles & points

  • Joe S

    Taking my wife’s family to Phoenix for their cousins’s daughter’s bat mitzvah. They couldn’t afford the tickets, but I have the miles so I thought why not.

  • Jamie

    I am taking my Mom to Thailand for her 60th birthday. Using AA and AS miles to fly CX. It will be her first time in Asia.

  • Sean S.

    In college, I had to get to a wedding in CVG in the spring, so someone booked a Delta award for me to get there (flight was >$500). As the weekend of the wedding was approaching, we had a death in the family, in which I now needed to get to a different city (CLE). After change fees, the new ticket would’ve set me out more than $1,000. After a quick change, I was now able to gain my first knowledge of an open jaw award and modified the award to get me to CLE (drove with my family from the funeral to the wedding, CLE to CVG). Looking at it after the fact, getting >4CPM on this redemption from skypesos was pretty amazing, but I will still be forever grateful of the generosity of the person who redeemed these miles for me.

  • Karen Shelton

    We used points to book a room for my inlaws so they could join us on our family trip to Washington DC. It was a great opportunity for my children to visit with their grandparents in the nation’s capital!

  • Aarif

    A couple years ago I stayed at a Radisson with the express purpose of earning 50,000 points… but I actually stayed the night after the promo ended. A random internet citizen took pity on me and contacted their Club Carlson insider to help me get my points anyway.

  • osprey6

    My old college friend had accumulated some US miles, but not enough for a free ticket. I told him about e-rewards as a way to earn free miles along with a couple other sites. He moved to an area not well served by US, and then I showed him how to redeem miles on Star Alliance partners, and how to earn points on shopping, hotels, car rentals and credit cards. Last year, after a lot of work, he was able to book free tickets to take his sweetie to Florida. She got beach time, and he got to see spring training games. And he did it first class!

  • Dan

    Used my Chase UR to book my grandmother business class Amtrak tickets, since she wanted to visit family but was too frail to deal with the hassle of flying.

  • Andrew S

    My father helped me out by using SkyPesos to get me to England to see a friend.

  • Bill Sklar

    I pooled some of my miles with a biz colleague’s to put a young soldier in first class.

  • Eric

    I was able to upgrade a friend using miles for a very long trip when they were not feeling well.

  • Majunag

    A buddy of mine who was down on his luck – for being out of a job and low on cash – needed some help. He had some United/Star Alliance miles but not enough for his trip (needed 30,000) so I gifted him about 3,000 and he was able to get a free ticket and do what he needed to do. It felt good to do something “nice” and “generous” with my miles.

  • Brian

    My “proudest” moment was helping my family put together a trip using Delta SkyMiles and US Bank FlexPerks to Hawaii over Thanksgiving last year. 4 award tickets from 4 different locations.

  • Jim

    I used usairways miles to fly my disabled grandmother in first class to my brother’s wedding which she would not have been able to attend otherwise.

  • MrJorgeV

    I booked a trip to Argentina and Chile for my boyfriend and I to get away. This will be our first adventure abroad together. Thanks to miles the whole trip is free!

  • Mike

    I put together a trip for my bro so he can visit his fiance in Africa.

  • Sarah C

    My best experience was using miles for a roundtrip ticket to Paris for my mom! It was her first visit and I was so excited to explore the city with her!

  • Justin Jimenez

    Recently helped a friend and her husband maximize their AA miles. Researched availability and got them MIA-Singapore in biz (MIA-SAN, SAN-NRT (JAL 787), NRT-SIN), and return in Biz: Bangkok-HKG on Royal Jordanian, and HKG-NYC on Cathay! And I didn’t charge them… :-)

  • wiznick

    Upgrading my parents’ long-haul flight from India to US to Business Class with my miles (all the miles I collected by reading TPG blog and using CC links:)).

  • Jason Bauer

    I was able to get my mom a ticket from JFK-MXP for free using Delta SkyBonus Points, so she could come on a trip to Italy and visit the town where her grandparents emigrated from!

  • Diane Nguyen

    My fiance’s brother recently moved from California to Oklahoma for the Teach For America program. He stuffed what he could into his car and drove himself out there, starting over. He’s super broke and can’t really make it back here for the holidays, so I will be flying him out here with my points and surprising the (future) family! (shhhh :))

    He keeps telling me that he feels terrible that I have to use my points on someone other than myself.

    …but in all honesty it was a really easy decision to make. He’s chasing his dream! I’m just glad I can help make things easier along the way.

  • Michael

    My best experience was using miles for a roundtrip ticket to China for my Grandma! It saved her a lot of money since it is a peak season

  • Kevin

    I brought my parents and my sister and brother-in-law and children to the W Seattle to stay a few nights before and after our Alaskan Cruise! It was definitely appreciated and saved the family’s over $1,000 out of their pocket!

  • Gin

    Used Miles to take my Mom to a family reunion in Turks and Caicos! So happy she can join us!

  • Karlos

    Just yesterday my coworker was complaining about how she was going to have to just let her US Airways miles go because they expire soon and she wasn’t planning on flying with them anytime soon. I immediately asked her if she was planning on buying anything online before her points expire and showed her the shopping portal. Her daughter’s birthday present earned her 4 times the miles!

  • travelingfools

    I was able to help a friend traveling to Mexico when a snow storm cancelled their flights. She called me at home and I was able to help without too much delay!

  • AD

    I was able to help my cousin book a last minute award ticket to India to see a sick member of the family. He was a student so would have been a being burden for him to by a last minute ticket.but with Airmiles I had banked I was able to get him a round trip to India for 65,000 miles and he paid for the taxes and fees!!

  • Steve

    I’m using a Delta AMEX Plat BOGO cert to take a friend with me to Vegas and using Avios points for us to stay four days free on the strip. It’s great to take a friend on a vacation for almost nothing!

  • Dana G

    My brother-in-law was invited to sing at the installation of the new pope in Rome. My husband and his parents didn’t think they could afford the last-minute plane tickets and were heartbroken to miss seeing this in person in St. Peter’s Square. A family friend generously gave them miles (hundreds of thousands of miles) to cover airfare for all three of them to be there in person for this once-in-a-lifetime event.

  • Brad

    My friend Don gave me a first class upgrade on Delta. He explained the program and got me hooked

  • deb donnarumma

    I was able to help my children get home for the holiday with points.

  • Jerry Leskiv

    I helped my friend go on a west Coast vacation by combining Marriott and Southwest points.

  • Aoife

    I’ve gotten several friends as addicted as I’ve become to points collection! Many couldn’t understand how they’d never heard of the credit card bonuses before… must say I felt the same when I first started reading up on this blog and many others!

  • Greg

    Flew out our cousin in business class for free, she’s never been to Jerusalem before so it was a great treat for her…

  • Daniel H

    I once emptied my shared my complete collection of points and miles to help my wife buy an emergency ticket to her home country to visit her mother in her death bed, who had just suffered a massive stroke and had days to live. Points/Miles don’t matter, people and family do

  • gilnyc

    I used AA miles to take my sister and brother-in-law to EZE for her 50th birthday.

  • Ann

    I used american miles to take my single parent best friend with me to paris over thanksgiving when she otherwise would’ve been alone. I used my hyatt points for my brother to spend the night at park hyatt toyko. And I used my ihg points to get rooms for my mother and brother to stay in while my dad was having heart surgery in another town.

  • Edward Russell

    I recently used my 2 US Airways companion passes for a weekend trip to New Orleans. My status only allows myself and 1 other passenger an upgrade. After splitting the reservation, I used miles to upgrade the single flier there and back. In the end, we were all upgraded and it only cost me 12,000 miles!

  • Matt F

    I travel quite a bit for business, so I surprised my wife twice, using miles. First, with one of my longer trips, I used miles to fly her mother down to visit. I then used miles so she could accompany me to Hawaii for a business trip

  • Brett Albertson

    I booked a last-minute ticket for my Mother-in-Law to visit a sick relative with my miles…

  • frenchman619

    Last month I suggested my friend put his gas on his Freedom card instead of the his PRG AmEx to take advantage of 5x UR points

  • Ethan

    Booked my Mom a ticket to Boston to join in a road trip the rest of the family was on. She wouldn’t have been able to go but we helped her out with points!

  • pappa Dan

    Was able to take my two step-sons to Alaska. Best trip of my life!

  • Eugene

    Booked a S* award ticket from BOS-CTU for my friend and saved them $400-500 off the revenue ticket in the high summer season.

  • Gabriel

    I helped my parents book an Eastern Europe retirement trip using the AA miles they had accumulated over the years.

  • steve

    I’ve used a good chunk of my miles and points to fly my aunt from NY to Atlanta to visit my mom who has ALS.

    I’ve also used a good chunk of miles to fly my wife out to visit her friends who just gave birth, so my wife can help with some of the cooking/cleaning/care of the kids to let the new parents get some rest.

  • Matt

    Used my us airways miles to get my sister back to Oregon for my grandmas funeral.

  • Nick O (PIT)

    I used my Southwest points to take my mom for a long weekend trip.

  • Tom Perkins

    My girlfriend won a contest to go on this awesome cruise, the only issue was that it was departing from LA and she lives in New Jersey. I used my Southwest points to get her a flight from Newark to LAX so that she was able to go!

  • Kent

    Fly my brother from Boston to visit us in Charleston. He’s a starving artist :)

  • Waltwill2

    Was able to give a friend miles to go to another friends wedding in Croatia. Amazing!!!

  • Dustin

    I used hotel points to put my relatives up in a nice hotel for a trip to Disneyland. Was a nice change from the usual super cheap places we stay at to afford the trip.

  • Jesse Williams

    I used SPG points for my wife and family to travel to Dubai.

  • Henry

    Explained to my friend and wife how to get the Southwest Companion pass until the end of 2015 by applying for the two 50k offers in October. Should be able to save them hundreds of dollars in travel over the next two years!

  • Colin

    I used 20k US Airways miles to fly my dad to Philly for Philly Beer Week

  • Phil

    I always give away my Marriott free nights from the quarterly promotions. They have come in handy whether it’s treating my parents to a weekend out of town or for a friend in need, it’s always nice to be able to do something for those around me who don’t get to travel as much as myself and enjoy the benefits.

  • Taryn

    I got my mom a first class flight to Vegas with my points for an impromptu mother-daughter weekend. It was her first time to Vegas and her first time flying first class- she LOVED it!

  • Brant

    Helped family use AA miles to fly first class on cathay to hong kong.

  • Mr. Cool

    sheeeeeat..my friends call me “the agent”. just last week helped a friend book a domestic open-jaw on DL.
    last month, helped a friend book a roundtrip to KBP on UA/LH in bidness

  • Rich

    For our first trip to Europe, we were going to London, and I wanted it to be special. I wanted to stay in the Marriott at High Holborn, which at the time was mucho expensive. I used points for a few nights of our relative’s room, which let us stay top notch, and me to feel less guilty about the cost.

  • Rachel

    I told my friend about the Chase Sapphire Preferred. She needs Southwest points to go see her family, and she’d been putting all of her everyday spend on the Southwest card. After I told her about the 2x on travel and dining, plus 7% annual bonus, she was hooked and has already gotten several free tickets to see her family.

  • Felicia Braude

    I bought my parents flights to visit me in Bermuda for 35k RT on delta :) No hassle for them and they had free lodging!

  • Michael Hess

    I met my wife online and gave her frequent flyer miles to book a flight for our first date! That was 15 years ago!

  • Carter29072

    I booked tickets for my brother and his son to join my husband and kids in Salt Lake City to ski. I paid for the trip with my Delta miles and paid or their rooms with some Ultimate reward points that I had. I love booking travel especially if it can make other people happy.

  • Nick

    I transferred UR points to Hyatt so that my mother and grandma could stay at the Hyatt Regency in DC, just minutes away from the Capitol. In doing so, I got 2.5 cents in value from each point!

  • Amit

    After reading TPG, I helped my cousin go from Chicago to Montreal for her best friend’s bachelorette weekend using my Avios.

  • juddpatterson

    Missing a flight can spell disaster. On Christmas eve a relative was traveling home to be with us when they pushed their schedule too far, overslept, and missed a critical connection. I was able to get them a quick AA award ticket to Dallas and they made their next connection!

  • Claire

    My favorite nephew was bemoaning the fact that he could not afford a ticket to Europe to attend a “Magic the Gathering” tournament (this is kind of like an FTU for these gamers) so I used my United miles to book him a ticket.

  • Gerry

    I have a few friends of lesser means, one who is chronically ill. I have sent them home to visit loved ones for festive and unfortunate family events and goodbyes. I feel fortunate that I can open up my miles wallet for them and make a difference. It means the world to them and adds a new dimension to my hobby.

  • Mike Stanioski

    I was able to surprise my wife with our honeymoon trip to the Maldives and Italy. Used United miles to book Turkish air business class and Lufthansa business on the way back. Used suite night upgrades at the Sheraton Maldives to get a water bungalow and then the ambassador suite at the St Regis in Rome.

  • lamonster

    About a year ago I decided to give away 100,000 miles/points each to two random friends on Facebook to celebrate reaching a certain mileage goal of mine. My friends could use the miles/points however they wanted to so one went on a vacation with her husband to Hawaii and the other decided to take a trip with his wife to Israel, which so happens to be where I live!

  • Carter29072

    I booked a trip for my brother and son to join my husband and our boys in Salt Lake City to snow ski. All tickets were paid for with Delta miles. I booked their hotel with Ultimate Reward points. I love to book travel, especially for someone else. I love to make them happy! I helped my dad with his wedding trip to Vegas back in July– much on points.

  • Jimmy

    I finally saved enough Delta miles this past summer to let my dad fly business class for the first in his life to visit my great grandfather back in China. He had the time of his life on the upper deck of a 747.

  • AndreiM

    This summer I booked a weekend getaway in the Makassar
    Junior Suite at Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe using my MR points for two of
    my best friends. They got engaged and I thought this could be a nice way to
    celebrate the event J

  • dlnbk

    A fraternity brother was trying to get to Bali for his honeymoon on a Delta award. I thought it would be nearly impossible, but after much tweaking, we were able to get him and his new wife there for only 120K per person. But we had lots of patience…

  • NEPIC

    I booked my brother in LH F from FRA to NRT via MUC. He was able to sample the FCT and while it was the old F, he then got lucky on the MUC-NRT leg being the only one in F! I think he was a bit overwhelmed with the attention he got!

  • Chris M.

    Getting married in Hawaii next year and using miles to bring family and friends there to help cut the cost burden for those who would struggle with it. If I were to get the US Airways miles, they’d go to bringing my fiancee to Germany to spend Xmas with me while I’m working and away for the holidays.

  • Audrey Wei

    My Mom was in London and she found out that my brother was visiting home (Singapore) last minute for work. Since my brother moved to Melbourne 2 years ago, they have not seen each other. Because it was a last minute decision, my Mom couldn’t afford to pay for a one way ticket from London to Singapore since her return flight on British airways could not be changed and she didn’t want to burn it. Thank goodness we had Krisflyer miles and flew her back in time and they had a wonderful reunion.

  • John

    This summer I helped my mother visit my grandfather in Italy by using United points on a Swissair flight.

  • Rence

    I had a friend just 15,000 miles short of flying first class with her husband to India for a friend’s wedding, so for her birthday, I sent her the United miles she needed to make it happen. Not a ton of miles, but made a huge difference in her experience on such a long flight from DC!

  • FlyerM

    After moving with my (then) girlfriend (now wife!) to Dallas, her parents were missing her terribly. I cashed in a LOT of AAdvantage miles for a first class award for her mom to visit her. Doing this scored me a LOT of future mother-in-law points, better than any sign up bonus. Points that I’m still cashing in today! :-)

  • ilovezvezda

    I’m a broke grad student but I’ve been traveling well thanks to airline and hotel points. I’ve been offering weekly info sessions to my friends at the university for months now and we finally have everyone with enough miles to book a completely free trip to Thailand for Christmas break redeeming points on United and Starwood. Looking forward to the fun!

  • Maya

    I gave away Avios points to both my parents and my sister’s family (of 4) so they could join us in Aruba to celebrate my mom’s 70th birthday & my parents’ 45th anniversary! A small gift for such a big payoff! ✈️

  • brockab

    A friend of the family got me started on points when they used points to get me from Georgia where I just finished Basic Training and AIT for the Army to get me back to Arkansas for my Dad’s wedding. I was his best man and it really helped out on what would otherwise be a really expensive ticket at that time. I’ve been hooked ever since!

  • s002axb

    Used my AA miles to bring the kids grandparents along on a flight to Hawaii

  • Bob

    While I’m still new to the miles and points game, I have benefited from miles shared by my dad. He used a chunk of his miles to fly a friend and I to Puerto Vallerta for an unforgettable spring break my senior year of college!

  • Ahmed

    Took my sis’ family of 4 with my family of 4 to Hawaii. They had no idea where they were going and it was a surprise till the last minute, when they boarded our connecting flight from LAX to HNL. Sis had given me a budget to work with and didn’t know until afterwards that the entire 2 week trip for her whole from Orlando to Hawaii, with a 4 day stop in Cali afterwards, and a 2 day stop in Houston would end up costing her so little b/c every one of her flights I paid for with miles!

  • Joey Sasson

    I gave away my starwood points to my brother to book his honeymoon in Thailand.

  • Den

    I frequently help my friends with booking award tickets, but I’ll post my most recent experience, which happens to be the most fulfilling for me as a mile hoarder. First, I have to confess that I’m a miles hoarder. I hoard miles that I never have the time to use; it’s an addiction that I’ve been trying to stop, and I’m quite stingy at redeeming the miles that I have (even for my Partner and I). My dad, however, recently got into an accident and decided to retire back to Asia with my mother. Despite being so stingy, I was more than happy to use my miles to book him on a premium-class cabin just so he can rest well. I figured that at 80 he deserves to a decent sleep on a long-haul flight. I’m glad to report that I used a fraction of my US airways flight to book him at trip to Asia with a return ticket for next year. It made me happy to see him so thrilled about the prospect of flying in a premium cabin, and I actually feel good about using miles this time.

  • Andy

    I knew a priest who flew to Latin America regularly, he needed money and I needed a cheap ticket to Hawaii. So he purchased me a ticket for 50% of the fare and I gave him cash. In the end, we helped each other as he had more miles than he could use and I had some extra cash.

  • yumiaoabc

    My family lives in my China, so our family of 5 could NOT afford to visit them together. My husband learned how to use the points to book international flights, so he was able to take our family of 5 to visit my family in China on reward tickets. My grandmother got to meet her great grandchildren for the very first time:)

  • Coolmom

    My high school senior daughter informed me that she had to see a play for her theater class, and it she had to see it by the end of the week. Well, I was working in New York City, and I was able to find a last minute award ticket to New York City for $10 and 20,000 miles. When she arrived on Saturday morning, we walked down to the theater where Romeo and Juliet was playing and bought her a student ticket for $22. So the “educational” trip only cost me $32, the trip to Bloomingdales cost me a lot more! She better make an A!

  • Toby

    I taught my friend all about miles and points, and he earned enough that he was able to take his girlfriend on vacation with him multiple times. They’re now engaged and will be married next summer :)

  • Monj

    Used my avios points to book flights for my sister-in-laws from Chicago to D.C. The flights would have cost at least $1000 otherwise.

  • Shana Sweeney

    My father passed away last year the day after Christmas. While I flew up to Washington immediately, my family stayed behind until all of the funeral details were dealt with. One of my dear friends offered to get the tickets using miles for my husband and children to join me which was so incredibly generous and wonderful and helped immensely. I’m hoping one day to be able to pass on the favor to someone else.

  • Ryan Pham

    I brought my family from Vietnam to Japan this year while I flew in from the US. We had a great reunion and I got to hang with my super cute nephew! Miles spent on family truly are the best value.

  • Andrew

    I flew my in-laws on BA FC to Italy. So they did not get lost along the way, I had to go with them. Lucky me, and lucky them.

  • PhilB

    I gifted 40000 miles to my Mom so she could travel to Europe to attend her father’s 105th birthday. Made for a very happy moment for both.

  • mpeterson78

    I just got into the points game early this year, and my significant other was dubious of the whole venture, having always just paid full price for flights. However, after researching all the strategies with help from your blog, I was able to sign both of us for multiple credit cards. Last night we just booked out first award travel together, a 10-day trip from D.C. to Athens in July using Dividend Miles! Since we were flying on Star Alliance partners, we had to call in to reservations, which was every bit as harrowing as I’ve read it to be. After being on the phone with agents for over 2 hours, they finally found an itinerary that worked for both of us and we booked it! Pretty awesome to fly roundtrip to Greece on Lufthansa for only $100 in fees :) The miles and points game is probably one of the best things I’ve gotten into in recent memory, and allows trips like this one that I and my significant other would be otherwise unable to afford a reality!

  • Randy

    Just booked a weekend to Las Vegas with my wife and another couple using points for the flights and hotel. Our friends recently had twin boys 5 months ago, so it will be an economical and much needed getaway for them!!

  • Jonatas Silva

    One of my friends had his cousin’s wedding invitation lost the mail when he finally got it, the price of the flight from Boston to LA had jumped beyond what he could afford, I volunteered my miles, I booked last minute through BA executive account and was able to get him to the wedding, he was very grateful. Best part is that it only cost me $2.50 in fees and the 30k miles were covered by the 40% Amex transfer bonus!

  • glen

    My roommate’s mother (in Morocco) had a heart attack, so I booked her an emergency ticket from IAD to CMN (Casablanca) using MR points! Well worth it! Her mother survived, but we weren’t sure that she would. My roommate being at her mom’s bedside had to help!

  • Mo

    In September of 2011 I gave my sister a U. S. Airways ticket using miles so she could be with home when my father had surgery. Unfortunately, he passed away from complications after the surgery but my sister was able to spend a week with him before he passed.

  • mfriedma

    Used award tickets to bring my family from China to see my father after he got a terminal illness. He got to see his first grandson before he passed away.

  • James

    A friend of mine’s father passed away last minute and they had to fly across the country at the last second, the ticket prices he were finding last minute were so high, without hesitating i wanted him to use some of my miles, so i gifted them to him and we booked him a ticket back home.

  • http://www.laviajeramorena.com/ Chanel @ La Viajera Morena

    I am still pretty new to the points and miles game, but i booked my families flights with my delta amex and saved them the baggage fee and gave them priority boarding :)

  • sarah

    I sent my sister and her husband on a quick last minute vacation (while I watched her 4 kids) to New York. Tickets were $700 that weekend. Thank goodness for points.

  • Alexander Farmer

    I helped a former chemistry teacher from Albuquerque book a flight to the Czech Republic to attend to an urgent business matter — we’re talking millions. Booked his flight for him using my Flying Blue miles…..

  • David Liu

    Booked a trip for my uncle whos never been in business class before & convinced him to sign up for new sapphire with me getting the points, winning!!

  • Mark

    We recently treated our parents to a flight to Cancun and a stay at the Hyatt Regency Cancun. This was to thank them for graciously offering to watch our kids when we used points for another trip.

  • dennisdoubleday

    I used American miles to get my son to Raleigh, NC last year for a Thanksgiving family reunion.

  • Sean

    My brother-in-law is deployed in Afghanistan and my sister and my 2 nephews are alone at the military base in Germany. I used my miles to bring them from Germany to my folk’s house in California until my brother-in-law tour of duty ends.

  • Jessica

    I just used miles and points to take my mom to Florida for a much needed girl’s weekend. It was our first mother-daughter getaway and she was so grateful. It was so much fun!

  • Jennifer

    My most meaningful sharing of miles was when I took my friend Amy to Cabo San Lucas with me. Amy had undergone treatment for breast cancer not once, but twice. She was finally at a place where she felt strong enough to get out and do things. I invited her to come with me on my annual trip to my timeshare in Cabo, and I used FF miles on US Airways for the tickets. We had a great time resting, relaxing, and dining. I’m so grateful for that time together because Amy died a few years later of complication from her breast cancer. Thank you for sharing your miles!

  • Taylor M.

    My parents recently moved and I was able to get my sister a flight home from school to go see them.

  • Scott C

    I’ve used miles to help family with last minute emergency travel.

  • Bill

    Mom helped me out big-time last winter with a ski trip to Mt. Tremblant; after I had booked the hotel, the last low-mileage seat available to Montreal dissappeared and I didn’t have enough miles for the flight until Mom came to the rescue! Would love to use these to return the favor.

  • Amanda

    I haven’t spent any of my miles or points yet I am saving them to take my mom and husband on a first class trip to Europe. It will probably take a few years to get there

  • Bryan

    My parents gave us the trip of a lifetime to Australia via Hawaii using AA miles. Now that I’m a parent, I’d like to do the same for my daughter! These US Airways miles would be a big help.

  • Eric

    Used miles to help get family to a wedding!

  • Ken

    I helped my sister get to a funeral using 9k Avios instead of her spending $450 for a last-minute ticket.

  • disqus_SCjAaZd554

    My parents have saved me by using miles to get me on flights that don’t go through Denver!

  • Jason

    Bought a ticket using miles for my ex-girlfriend’s best friend to come in town and see her. We broke up a few weeks later. I need to refresh my bank of miles!!!

  • David

    Every year, I help a friend’s parents book an award to S. Africa. Though this year there seems to be a dearth of availability!

  • Alford

    Took my brother on a trip to China as a gift for graduating college.

  • Jacob K

    A few friends and I won’t be going to our respective homes over Thanksgiving, so we’ve decided to take a trip to Montreal instead. Flights are pretty expensive for the holiday and one of my friends didn’t want to pay full fare for the flight, so I got us both award tickets by transferring Amex MR points to BA Avios!

  • shiv

    The best deal I found was taking my family to India on last minute travel for close friends marriage. We would have gone or afforded 4 tickets if we didn’t find the great deal here. It is tough to take family of four to India unless we find good airfare. Thx.

  • Kim

    When I had just graduated college, I had no money, but really wanted to do something special for my mom’s birthday. I had accumulated enough miles through opening a branded credit card that I had one domestic flight available. I talked to my mom’s boss and arranged for her to have a week’s vacation – unbeknownst to her – and bought a plane ticket for her with my miles. I surprised her with a trip to see her sister whom she hadn’t seen in quite a while. She was so surprised and so happy, and I still remember that feeling of using my miles to help someone else.

  • Mark

    One of my best friends and co-workers was diagnosed with cervical cancer and needed to commute from Philly to New York to seek treatment. I donated Amtrak Guest Rewards Points to her family because the train fare was bankrupting her and her husband.

  • SeaBee3

    Used some miles before to help a family friend get to her father’s bedside from her home in Alaska. It feels really good to be in a position to help someone like that!

  • Steven Yu

    Because I am going to be away from my family for the next few months for work, I decided to splurge and bring my wife, daughter and parents-in-law to Bali to celebrate my wife’s birthday where we all spent an amazing week at Bali Hyatt (before they close for 2 years) at 7000 points a night in a club room as well as redeemed 5 round trip tickets on Singapore airlines! Best redemption ever!

  • Ron

    I used points to take my elderly Mom, and family, on a European vacation, to include a visit to the city from which my deceased grandparents emigrated to the U.S.

  • Deniz

    I helped my friend book his first ever plane ride to DCA using miles. He loved it and is never taking the bus again!

  • Nathan

    I have helped my whole family apply for credit cards. And come on fabulous trips with me

  • Matty

    I just recently used US Airways Miles to book some nice Business Class tickets on Swiss and Singapore Airlines for my parents, so far they only know Economy Class and it seems they are already very looking forward to it!

  • Frank Sun

    This was a slightly bizarre turn of events. A friend was having trouble locating acceptable fares to Alaska in January of 2010. As someone that had a thing for her, I spotted her a pair of free tickets so she and her friend can go on a Aurora-sighting trip. On the first night under the northern lights, some guy in the group asked her out, and she said yes. They are now happily married with a kid, so I suppose I did him a favor, and helped push her along the way of happily ever after. Sucks for me, but hey, it’s just life.

  • Eric

    I used points to be able to fly my family down to my graduation. It was an event that I wanted them there for, and they may not have been able to afford the flights/accommodation costs without points!

  • Ed Gil

    My mom lives in Colombia and for the birth of my daughter, I got her a “surprise” ticket to come to the US to meet her new granddaughter…best use of miles ever…

  • Brad

    I used my points to fly my mom to the Caribbean to visit me while I was in medical school.

  • gussomer

    I have been able to fly several friends and family using my tool belt of miles and points.

  • Aaron Hunt

    I’ve used miles to donate to Make a Wish and to have my wife travel with me, but my favorite use was to provide travel for disaster assistance after Hurricane Katrina. We worked hard, but it remains one of my favorite trips.

  • snakedoc1

    I recently helped a friend from Malaysia book a trip with points back to Malaysia. She had been here in the US for 5 years, but her US visa didn’t allow her multiple entries into the US. She is on a limited budget, so getting an award ticket was a great help. She had never thought about an award ticket until I started helping her with miles/points. I got my info to help her from the blog. Thanks for the blog!

  • InACents

    I have been able to use my miles and points to bring along my in-laws with us when we travel.

  • Fat Ted

    I was able to send my mother to visit family for a recent death. It was nice to be able to use my miles to save her money and the hassle of finding tickets. And on top of that I got great value out of the miles as the 2-days-away cost was very high.

  • Scott

    My parents live in California and I live in NYC….They are huge tennis fans and it has always been a dream of theirs to go to the US Tennis Open here in the city. So thanks to your blog, I’ve had them accumulate enough points to fly here in business class (one way on Delta no less!) on the transcon and then we used points to have them stay at the Andaz Wall Street using Hyatt points. They had a great time!

  • jiffyjiff

    Flew my parents down to FL to spend time with ill extended family….

  • Dan J

    We flew my brother-in-law from Montreal to the DC area to visit us. He had just gotten over a bad break-up from a long-term relationship and we thought it’d be nice if we could offer him a chance to get away for a little bit.

  • Izzy

    I used my points to help out my brother who needed to get to his best friend’s wedding. He had a flight booked which got cancelled, and the next flight they offered him wouldn’t get him in on-time. So i looked through my points and available redemptions, and bingo, i found a flight a little over two hours later and he was able to make it to the wedding, albeit a bit late.

  • Susan

    I ‘gave’ someone a trip to Paris on miles through the last US share miles promotion….

  • Babs

    My husband had his 70th Birthday and we wanted to fly business class for a special Europe trip . . . We were short miles and our son and his wife gave us their miles to top off our trip miles needed. we leave in 2 weeks!

  • AMSBelle

    When I was a poor college student my Dad gave me some miles to visit my then boyfriend while he spent the summer in Texas. We’re married now :)

  • Eckingtonite

    When I was about to embark on my first solo transatlantic flight at the age of 16, I was a bit nervous, as it was to Nice, France, and I spoke no French other than “Je suis désolé, mais je ne parle pas français.” My mother used her miles to upgrade me to business class, figuring it would make it easier, and announcing that “no child of mine will be in coach to Europe if I can help it!”

  • TPat

    I used miles and points to book flights and hotels for my parents to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary in Kauai.

  • Peter K

    When a friend was moving across the country – VA to CA – I used hotel points to book her hotel rooms. 30k Starwood points got her nights in Columbus, St. Louis, Kansas City, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles. It was an experience she will never forget and was well worth the points.

  • DH

    I used my points to book a last-minute award ticket for a family member who could not afford to purchase a last-minute ticket to a family funeral. Sad circumstances but happy that points could help the family be together.

  • CJ

    Thepointsguy blog has helped me recently on so many things. I thought I was pretty good at all these miles stuff, but I was wrong lol. I learned many new tricks and gained many good information from your blog. So, thank you :)

  • Lance

    I help people all the time use their points. When airlines told my friend Mel that nothing was open to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, I used my routing wisdom to send her via Ethiopian from the US with an add on cheap JetBlue flight for positioning.

  • Brian Lois

    I booked my cousin and her husband with United miles to Europe for a relatives wedding. Everything went well until they called me in the middle of the night after they realized they were at the wrong airport (ORY instead of CDG). I told them to drive to CDG while I called to rebook their flights. Amazingly, I was able to rebook the award flights online and they got on the next flight home.

  • Sarah M

    I used points from the Southwest rapid rewards card to book tickets for my in-laws to come spend Christmas with us.

  • Carl Cheng

    I always try to share the things I’ve learned with friends or anyone I run into about miles and credit cards, ESPECIALLY when I’m at dinner splitting the bill and seeing friends pay with debit cards or cash! I just want people to know that there are things they can take advantage of and fly much more affordably and glamorously. :)

  • Yucci

    I first started booking flights and hotels for our personal trips with my partner– Japan, Bali and China on SQ, CX and MH using Amex points. After posting the pictures on Facebook, I shared what I know with my work colleagues and most of them are amazed at what miles and points can do. Recently I booked myself and my partner flights from Australia and hotels to spend Christmas and New Year eve in New York, and two colleagues at work to go from Australia to US and come back via Europe, both using US DM and SPG points (with 35% redemption as a platinum gift). I am currently drafting some slides to walk people through basic of airline miles, hotel points and credit card points.

    As a business traveller, I always invite uniformed officers to come and join me in the lounge (unfortunately airlines here do not offer free lounge access for our uniformed officers), and sometimes asking the customer
    service representatives to help them picking a better seat. Even though I offered they are free to sit in a separate area if they would like sometimes by themselves, most of them would still choose to sit together with me, which always leads to a great conversation.

  • VC

    Helped my in-laws book an award hotel stay before their cruise with Hyatt.

  • Tony Mazer

    When my wife’s grandfather passed away in Greece, I surprised her and her Mom with business class upgrades the whole way so they could have a just a little more room to spend time together during a tough time. It was the best redemption I’ve done.

  • Brian S

    Several years ago, my then fiance (now wife) was scheduled to attend a week-long Yoga teacher training workshop. She had already paid for the training, but apparently had only made a flight reservation without paying for it. So, the night before her “flight” she was busy packing and went to look at her itinerary only to find the had no ticket! The cheapest flights were now $1,500 and Yoga teachers don’t make much money. Anyway, I was able to get her a ticket for with my United miles and got her there on time!

  • Rick

    My daughter is in a wedding in Las Vegas and when plans fell through to stay with someone, they had to book a hotel. They couldn’t afford the prices because it was last minute and I sure didn’t want them away from the strip so I found them a great place using points on the strip.

  • David G

    My best friend and his fiance didn’t have enough SPG points for their honeymoon, so I booked them a room at the St. Regis in Rome. It’s true — giving is so much better than getting. (Though I will enjoy getting the 26k US Airways miles!)

  • Arkadag

    When my brother got married in October 2011, he and his wife couldn’t afford to take a real honeymoon and decided that they would save for a trip to Hawaii for their 1st anniversary. They paid for the hotel, excursions, and other expenses, but I helped them out by using my United miles to fly them OMA-DEN-SFO-OGG-HNL-DEN-OMA and upgrade them on the DEN-SFO/SFO-OGG/HNL-DEN segments (neither of them had ever flown business/first before). For me it was a lot of miles (330,000 + $20), but for them it was the trip of a lifetime.

  • European

    For the last 7 years, I am sending my wife and two kids to spend vacation in Europe. During that time I have never purchased ticket for them with actual money. They kind of got spoiled flying Business on Lufthansa and expect it every time now – I keep telling them that may not last forever.

  • Lynn

    My mother helped me earn bunches of miles by letting me pay her taxes with my credit card. She reimbursed me by check – and SHE paid the service fee! Thanks Mom!

  • Lor

    I was able to find a great place to stay for relatives in Chicago using points that I transferred from ultimate rewards. They would have never been able to afford such a great hotel and couldn’t have been happier.

  • Orly

    I flew my mom and dad first class to Spain. It had been their life long dream to tour the south of the country. They had the time of their life, as it was the first time they had been abroad. Would do it again in a heartbeat.

  • Vijay Adhikari

    I *forced* a few folks to get AA cards.

  • Todd Gaddis

    Used my BA pts to get my sister to Seattle to visit our grandma and cousins

  • Ben

    My wife’s family invited me and her to go to Hawaii for Christmas last year. It turned out that the German exchange student who had stayed with her family a couple of years ago was studying on the East Coast at the time, and also wanted to go but could not afford the expensive ($1,000) Christmas tickets. I used all of the ThankYou points that I had to fly her out, leaving her with only a final roundtrip cost of $150.

  • softrice

    I gave my friends a Hawaii honeymoon package as their wedding gift.

  • AnnieLovesParis

    I gave up my first and only–so far–envoy seat on a flight to Paris so my husband wouldn’t have to sit alone in coach. I’d been planning a solo trip to my favorite city and had enough points for one leg in envoy. But about three weeks before the trip, my husband decided he wanted to come and I was glad…the ‘solo’ idea was starting to feel a little lonely. So we took a deep breath and bought him a ticket on the same flight, coach of course. And I knew right away that my dream of an envoy experience was quashed. When we got on board the flight, I approached the woman who had the seat next to my husband. She was on the way to visit her son who was stationed in Germany and deploying to Afghanistan. Would she mind moving up to seat 2H? I think she thought I was joking and she kind of looked around for hidden cameras. Finding none she happily settled in to what looked like a pretty comfy seat. We were glad for her and loved our trip to Paris.

  • MidTierStatus

    Booked my friends a room at times square and gave my upgrade to a military officer

  • Scott

    I used my southwest miles to buy a flight for my mother so she could visit my brother and niece after she was born.

  • Hans

    I transferred some points to my brother to help he and his wife celebrate their 10 year wedding anniversary in Jackson Hole, WY.

  • Raymond_G

    I got the 50k Southwest miles from getting their card form Chase (thanks to your blog!) this past January. I was musing on what to do with the miles, then in the spring my very good friend lost his job and was going to have to miss out on a family reunion due to belt tightening. I got him there for *free* with my Southwest points. Before that I’d been to Italy and Hong Kong on points and loved both, but to this day getting him that ticket is my favorite miles redemption of all time. Bar none!

  • Neer

    Helped my brother booking a complex us airways partner trip!

  • DP81

    We planned our wedding at the St. Regis Bali this year and flew out 25 of our friends and family all on points. I may or may not have forced them to all sign up for the Chase Sapphire card (using your affiliate link of course!) ;)

  • macaco

    My buddy doesn’t earn a lot, and always was envious of me traveling often without really realizing that i wasn’t really paying for my airfare. I gave him an intro to credit card churning and turned him on to the various blogs that cover the miles n points game, and he’s a pro now. He actually found a vanilla reload card and loaded up a bluebird before me! We’re now planning an a taxes-only trip to Asia!

  • Kristi

    I helped my aunt and uncle visit Hawaii for the first time.

  • April

    My cousin referred me to the Starwood American Express during a 35k points promotion so that I’d have several free nights at the Westin Maui Resort & Spa when I attended her wedding.

  • Geoff

    My father has been a traveler his entire career and has deal of frequent flier points on both United and USAirways. Last year on amassed a great September 29th, my wife and I got married and just this past week was obviously our first anniversary. We wanted to do something awesome for our first anniversary, but having just bought our first house together, we didn’t want to spend too much money. I had about 80,000 USAirways points that I have accumulated over my life, and that meant that booking through USAirways but flying United from Washington DC to London Heathrow would require 120,000 points (thanks for the Star Alliance). My father transferred 40,000 points from his USAirways account into mine which enabled us to do this trip without having to pay for airfare.
    We just returned late Tuesday night and had a great time! It was a first anniversary trip that we will never forget!

  • Janet McConnell

    I used the SWA advice and got both the biz and personal card at the beginning of the year. I earned a companion pass as well. So… I’m taking the whole family to NYC for the Macy’s Day parade!

  • phil

    I used my miles to take my only grandson to Hawaii for his 12th birthday. Priceless.

  • Ryan K

    Helped a friend earn a sw compnion pass after he already signed up for two sw visas but didnt know about the pass!

  • Lisa

    My son died unexpectedly in 2010. It was doubly difficult because we didn’t have a life insurance policy for him. (He was 19.) Thankfully, my aunt paid the funeral costs upfront with her credit card and allowed us to repay her over the course of a year. I can never thank her enough BUT she did at least get reward points which was awesome :)

  • RJ

    My husband was supposed to visit me in Italy last thanksgiving. When he called the night before, I assumed he was confirming our plans. Instead, he was calling to tell me his dad had just passed away. Fortunately, I’d insured his Italy ticket. I quickly found a cheap $650 rt flight for me from VCE-EWR and since his economy flight would have cost $450+ I used miles to fly him first class rt STL-LGA. It was awesome to be able to take care of him like that from far away using tips and miles opps I’d learned about through sites like this one. Thank you!

  • Rob

    I pay miles for my parents to visit from the UK in business class every year.

  • Simon

    I booked my mom and her friend award tickets on Korean Air and China Southern business class to the Philippines using my Delta miles.

  • Leslie Mellard Pineyro

    When is was applying to law schools, I was determined to move to San Francisco. My mom thought it was not a good idea due to cost, but still gave me the frequent flyer miles to go and tour the school, so I could figure it out on my own. That is the only solo “vacation” i have ever taken, and it was actually amazing though I ended up going to school in Atlanta

  • Nicole

    When my sister-in-law asked me how I managed to get from Omaha to North Carolina for free, I told her about my Chase Sapphire Preferred.

  • Steve G

    I helped my friend get into the miles game and then they were able to book trips to St. Maartins and other destinations with miles.

  • Ben

    My wife was having a hard time deciding to go to Italy to visit some relatives because of ticket costs. Not only I offered her access to the small fortune of miles I had been (secretly) accumulating, but I even spent time looking for routings that would allow her to use the low redemption levels in Alitalia Magnifica from NY to Rome that I had found. The real generosity on my part (even though I admit I was horrified) was letting her decide that she preferred a direct flight to Venice in coach to a business class flight (with one-stop), for approximately the same miles!

  • JW

    helped my mom and aunts to fly to states in business from china by buying 100% bonus us air miles. cost is only $1700 each RT!

  • Jackie

    My boyfriend and I have been dating long distance for almost a year now and commuting from NY to SF has been expensive, to say the least. But we make it work, mainly by maxing out points as much as possible. His credit isn’t great so any time he wants to make a big purchase, he sends me cash and I buy it with my rewards cards so that we can keep earning more points to see each other more often ;)

  • http://gotravelzing.com/ Jeff Broman

    I bought my Dad a ticket to Peru for our upcoming trip with miles. I also had him sign up for Chase Sapphire and SPG AMEX so he could earn a lot more miles.

  • mjtaxpro

    Gave a couple at my church 2 nights worth of points on my Mariott card for their honeymoon. They didn’t have very much money, and neither did I for that matter, but I had points!

  • Joseph May

    Last year booked a friend
    jfk-cdg-nbo-jro
    nbo-fco (stop)-JFK
    for 120K business class using skypesos.
    Applause please.

  • Tommy T

    I introduce a few co-workers to the world of miles and points early last year. Because of this I was able to help out two co-workers to gain enough point to travel international. Actually help one travel home to her homeland to visit her dying sister for the last time. Something that should would not be able to save up and do, cause she was an assembly line worker. She was very grateful., she had plan to use the points for her and her son to have a getaway for summer. But life had different plans and the miles/points came just in time. Now most of my co-workers love miles/ points and learn the value of them over paying with cash.

  • mansa

    I used my son and daughters points in their united account to buy 2 1 way tickets for their school crossing guard to visit his grandson in Florida this summer; He has been diagnosed with cancer and since he had very limited means, we used the points lying in their accounts to get him to visit instead of just donating a few $$. I am glad that he could visit his grandson and also that my kids were able to learn the joy in giving at an early age.

  • mikemilzz

    My favorite mileage story isn’t about a big trip, or anything overly exciting, but it was after my first child was born. My mother used some Chase UR points to buy tickets for my wife, daughter, and me to fly across the country and visit all the family members who hadn’t yet gotten to meet our child. It was a great family vacation that as new parents we couldn’t have made without those free tickets.

  • Jonathan

    I helped my parents get two business class tickets from LAX to CDG, AMS to ZRH, and ZRH to LAX on Lufthansa and Swiss Airlines. This was using both a stopover and open jaw for 200,000 United points.

  • Rich B

    I was able to use UA miles to book a special trip for my dad’s 60th birthday to Oslo in BusinessFirst – it was his first time flying in Business, and when they brought over the ice cream cart, he didn’t know what to think. I told him…order the strawberry!

  • Rona

    I was in south Florida for the winter 2 years ago (March 2012) and an elderly woman I met at the synogogue told me how much it was her dream to go to Israel once in her lifetime but that it was too great an expense. I helped her apply for 2 credit cards from Aadvantage and a Starwood card and she was amazingly approved for all. She made the trip alone and used the starwood points to stay at the Dead Sea LeMeridien for 5 days plus 3 nights in tel aviv and 2 nights in Jerusalem. I was feeling this was fate as she passed away only recently.

  • Michael Harding

    Learned this year about certain cards like Chase Sapphire preferred allowing the point transfer to another airline. Booked a United flight to Florida for just 25,000 points that would have cost at least 40,000 on my chase points!

  • Groobie

    Since I was 18, my mom has given me a ticket to anywhere in the world every few years for Christmas. Her miles paid for honeymoons for myself and my brother. Now that she’s retired, I am earning miles to take her first class to India in order to return some of the favor.

  • Dendrite

    I was able to use a combination of United and AA miles to take my younger sister on her “dream trip” to South Korea. She has been an enthusiastic fan of South Korean pop-music and tv dramas for many years now, so it was pretty wonderful to get to see her excitement about being there in person. Because she is a college student and I was a graduate student at the time, neither of us could have afforded this trip without award redemptions.

  • Brendan

    I helped my brother and his (now) wife plan the honeymoon of their dreams: Paris and Thailand in business class, using United miles. They loved it!

  • ASW

    For the last several years I’ve donated my excess Skymiles, AAdvantage miles and Flying Club miles to charities such as the Children’s Miracle Network, Miles for Kids in Need and Free The Children. Although I don’t personally know who has benefited from my miles donations, I do know that someone’s life has been bettered in some small way. I never really thought about donating miles until after reading FTG’s post asking his readers to donate their excess miles to charity. A good idea which I hope catches on with all miles and points collectors.

  • railingk

    I helped The Points Guy because he has helped me with all his posts. I clicked on his banner ad for the Ink Plus card this week and applied for the card that way. Thanks TPG!

  • Joseph Mansour

    I helped my friend book his honeymoon to rome and venice

  • Ryne Duchmann

    I helped my friend surprise his now wife with a first class trip to Paris by creatively leveraging a few sign up bonuses (inspired, as always, by the TPG team). She had no idea where they were going and was completely blown away when she saw the destination “paris” at the gate. He was planning on proposing at Versailles, but ended up just doing at the gate, with the assistance of the agent, because she KNEW that he was going to propose to her once she saw Paris.

  • Seth Meyerowitz

    i helped my friends plan their whole honeymoon 6 months in advance by getting them to sign up for the AA citi cards and the hyatt card. roundtrip to paris and 4 nights in the vendome all comped for them. booya.

  • Buddy M.

    I used Hawaiian Airlines miles to fly my Mom to Kona at Christmas.

  • Peter

    Your blog has helped open up a whole new world (literally!) to me. I proposed to my fiance and swept her away the next day in CX F to Thailand for $43. Thanks TPG!

  • Michael H.

    I helped my mom, aunt and grandmother fly to Vegas for their annual trip. Tickets were over $450 so i used UR points to fly Southwest.

  • Robert

    I booked tickets to give my partner his first trip to Europe:

    25K Flying Blue miles to fly coach LAX->ARN
    40K Aeroplan miles to return in business class BCN->SFO

  • Ted

    Surprised wife with CX First from SFO-JNB using AS miles!

  • J McLean

    I used miles to take the family to Ireland & Sydney. I think my son benefits seeing other cultures and I hope to take us to London next year.

  • Elizabeth

    I helped my sister apply for two AA Citi cards that netted her enough miles for a oneworld explorer award business class ticket to Australia, Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan. We went together and visited international student friends in the various countries.

  • phxbne

    we helped friends stay at a Hilton in London….they only had Hyatt points…..

  • Andrew L

    My father has been going to China and Hong Kong for business for the past 30 years. He has always wanted to bring my mother along but it just never worked out with her job and kids at home.
    This is the first year that all my (5) younger siblings are finally married, moved out, or away at school and her opportunity to visit Asia has finally arrived.
    I used 180,000 US Airways miles I had saved for myself to book them in business class on EVA with time to visit Hong Kong and Shanghai. My parents have done so much for me that I feel it is about time I returned the favor! :)

  • KP

    I was able to net miles to let my 20 year old sister go on a lifetime trip to Turkey, in the same year, I helped my sister escape to LA on Miles last minute, after leaving a bad relationship!

  • Jeff Reardon

    I have been telling all my friends about thepointsguy.com and advising them how to get into this fun and profitable hobby.

  • Chris

    Used my Chase Rewards to get a AA flight (w/ Avios) and an Amtrak ticket for my girlfriend to get to a job interview for 9,000 pts…..The flight alone would have cost $275 and the Amtrak $200.

  • Rob

    I helped my now-fiancee with mileage and points by convincing her to try her first airlines-reward card. Honeymoon upgrade to first class, here we come!

  • Fatherof5

    I was able to fly my sister down to Atlanta to celebrate our Aunt’s 90th birthday. Thanks to Delta miles via AMEX MR points.

  • Lisa Damiano

    My closest friends from college get together once a year (without kids or husbands) and this year one friend could not afford a trip. I used my United miles (of which I had as a result of two Mileage Plus cards and frequent work travel) to book her a flight to Cabo so that she can join us (saving her $600). I had plenty of miles to book myself a ticket also, and although we live in different cities (Washington DC and Indianapolis) I was also able to get us on the same second leg with seats together.

  • Chris

    A couple years ago I had my mom get the Chase BA 100K card (pre-devaluation) since it had such good value. She was sitting on it, and then found out that her mom in the Philippines got cancer again and had to be hospitalized for more testing. Used her points for a one-way trip on Cathay Business to MNL. She emailed me a few weeks later when she was ok to come home.

  • Teja Pamganamamula

    Booked my grandparents first class tickets to India on Lufthansa using Membership Reward Points via Air Canada they had, which they didn’t even know about. My grandpa loves the 747-8i so much that he has been constantly asking me what cc he can apply for to get another chance to fly that aircraft and experience the FC Terminal @ Frankfurt. He is now a follower of your blog :)

  • Mike

    I helped book my friend’s flight using CC points saving him over $500.

  • Kimberly Rotter

    My dad and stepmom traveled frequently to Europe during their first decade in retirement. They flew on military planes whenever seats were available (cold!) and commercial airlines the rest of the time. In 2012 they invited me and my husband and daughter to visit them in Virginia (from California) at their expense. They gave me 150,000 points to buy the tickets!! The points were on United but when I logged in to my stepmom’s account to book the award flights, I noticed that waaaay down at the bottom of the list of options was a very nice itinerary on US Airways… in First Class! For the same 50,000 points each as a standard coach-class round trip award ticket! I grabbed it and the three of us traveled cross-country in First Class style for the first and possibly only time. Talk about icing on the cake!

  • Jonathan

    I used my US Airways miles to send my sister and brother-in-law to Africa so that they could go on safari and climb Kilimanjaro for their honeymoon.

  • Chris

    I’ve been able to hook my parents up with multiple Southwest tickets to Florida. It’s a good feeling

  • DanR NYC

    I gifted my neighbors two award tix (LGA to MCO) as a getaway. The newlyweds never had the opportunity of going on a honeymoon. My wife and I thought it was the right thing to do. They went and had a blast. We felt great.

  • AB

    Used my 2 Citi American Airlines sign up bonus points to send my dad back home to Asia in comfort on Qatar Airways. Saved me $1,700. He was so impressed and proud we didn’t have to pay. Hahah.

  • GetToThePoints

    I used my SPG points to send one of my employees who really couldn’t afford to take their family on a vacation to Florida.

  • NVD

    My sister lives in Vancouver and I’m in NYC – the perfect city pair to redeem a reasonable 37.5k AAdvantage miles for a stellar first class experience on CX, which is exactly what I surprised my sister with for her birthday last year. She was thrilled!

  • Dev

    Helped my mom fly to LA using award miles by signing up for the Amex Gold Delta card plus getting the $99 companion certificate the year after (last year).

  • Dixieliminal

    I booked a business class trip to Israel using my US air miles for my 86 year old grandmother to meet her newest great grand babies! I don’t know if she could have handled 13 hrs in coach; regardless she deserved to travel in style!

  • McGoGo56

    I regularly use miles to fly my in-laws to visit us as they live in expensive market (ABQ)

  • DavidAA

    By combining our Avios accounts with my parents. We’ve helped each other out when needed! Also, my parents helped each with Ultimate Reward points transfers since they are in the same household! Their going to Disney World and a Carribean cruise!

  • Larry

    When my girlfriend and I met, we had both been through painful breakups/divorce a few years before. What had made them even more painful was that both of us are big travelers and both had had to cancel planned trips due to the breakups. As it turned out, the destination of that trip for both of us was the same, Japan. She was having financial problems due to the breakup and hadn’t been able to travel for a while so Japan seemed like a low priority. I decided to use my miles to take her on her first first-class trip of her life. A few weeks before we were set to leave, the tsunami, earthquake and nuclear meltdown happened. She wanted to cancel, thinking this was a trip that was just not destined to be, but I convinced her to go. It was a fantastic trip, though tempered of course by the suffering of the people affected by the tragedy. After we returned, we learned that there had been multiple aftershock tremors in Tokyo while we were there but we hadn’t even felt them…

  • Bret

    I was feeling a bit blue last fall and all my friends were gathering somewhere else for a weekend. One of my fabulous friends used their Delta points (Lord knows how many that took!) to have me fly in and join the group. What a great weekend!

  • Greg z

    Sent my in-laws on their first ever trip outside of north America to Barcelona in business using AA miles from citi.

  • Oliver Palley

    My mother actually just helped me out, using this offer to transfer 23,000 miles (46,000) into my account. I’ll be using them to fly home to London from NYC for a visit sometime next year.

  • Brent

    I met a stranger at British Airways Lounge in LHR just this week who needed to make some last minute changes for a family emergency. He had thousands of miles but was unaware how to use them. I was able to walk him through the process and get him home without breaking the bank!

  • Mark Licciardo

    My friend took me on a cruise when I was down & out after a surgery, divorce & financial whoos. I plan on paying him back, so after reading your post on the US share miles, so I shared 50K to him, then had him share 50K to me (which I’ll pay him for). Now I can take him on a trip and show him how I travel, bus class or pos 1st, seeing as he has done a lot of travel, but always pays top $ and rides coach. Now he will see what I’ve been talking about telling him about the FF community.

  • JTP

    I helped my roommate who’s family member passed away– he does not have much money and needed to get to florida from San Diego right away. I gave him some of my MR points and booked him a RT flight out and back. He is forever grateful and this would have never happened if not for the world and community of miles and points.

  • Larry Mack

    I took my girl friend on her first trip out of the country this year using points on American Airlines in April. We flew to Madrid and spent a 10 days touring Spain.

  • Jenn

    I took my boyfriend to New Orleans this past weekend and have already planned a trip to Andaz Papagayo in May (miles pending… ;) )!

  • Brian

    I got married last year and somebody on FlyerTalk gave me 2 lounge passes to use on my honeymoon during a 6+hr connection on our way home. It was great to relax and have a drink and some snacks before our last leg home from our honeymoon!

  • http://www.tylerbrownvisuals.com/ Tyler Brown

    Flying from Georgia (the country, not the state) to Turkey in December 2012, I ended up sitting next to a fellow American who turned out to be a points junkie. I had no clue how to go about anything and he completely laid out his strategy for me.

    Best of all, it’s how I found thepointsguy.com! We’re still in touch and actually do business together now…in less than a year, I’ve racked up 100k miles with his help and this site’s help!

  • chubbuni13

    During the AA triple EQM bonanza last January, I flew LAX-ORD 10 times. Not only did I hit Executive Platinum with 100k EQM’s for less than $2200, but I was able to bump up my mileage account enough to send both of my parents to Paris for the first time in 30 years. Ink + Sapphire + Hyatt cards were good for 6 nights at the Park Hyatt Vendome and a email to the GM at the hotel ensured that they were in a suite for their entire stay as a 30th anniversary present.
    To this day, whenever we get together with family and friends, my parents will gush about their trip instead of doing the whole Asian parent routine of “why you spend so much money?”. That’s when I know it was all worth it.

  • CVR

    My boyfriend had been working on the West Coast, and already had his return booked back to his home in Australia. I am on the East Coast, and we decided at the last minute to try to see each other one more time before he had to go back. We didn’t have a lot of funds, so luckily I was able to use my United miles for a one way to the east coast, and then we split the purchase for the one way back to the west coast.

  • Shelly Koester Athmann

    Last year I helped my mom get points to fly to Florida for a cruise. This was her first cruise!

  • Ben Griscom

    Had a friend who used his points to book the Staybridge New York Times Square for me and my girlfriend. We got there and we had the top floor and there was a bottle of champagne in the room from my friend. It was extremely nice of him!

  • Michael

    Last summer I used my AA miles and took my kids to China. They had a really good time there.

  • Donna Klein

    I used a similar share miles promotion Delta had to share miles with my husband and son to build miles for a dream trip to Europe. I wanted them to be able to fly business. I had flown coach on my only trip to Europe.

    I’m currently building UsAirways miles to take my son on a graduation trip to Hawaii. I am going to take advantage of this promotion and these miles would really help.

  • Luke DeJarnatt

    I’m flying my father out to california for a special drive up the coast father/son trip and we won’t spend a dime on flights or hotels thanks to POINTS! Happy Birthday Dad!

  • Kari Cohn

    After the latest US Air promotion, plans are in the works to take both my 70 yr old mother and my 24 yr old daughter to London and Paris (business class!). My mother has never been to either city, and this could very well be the last time the three of us can have an all girls trip. I’m so excited! Thanks to TPG for all of the great tips that ultimately made this happen. I couldn’t have done it with out you!

  • Dan C

    I’m taking my girlfriend to London and Paris in flat beds and luxury hotels (hello park Hyatt Paris Vendome) for about 400 bucks all-in! Basically, miles and points are helping me get laid!

  • Iowan

    I used avios to book 3 intra australia qantas tickets for my sister’s family. 22.5k avios for about $750 in tickets.

    The lesson learnt was to have one ‘freed up’ BA Avios account along with the household accounts if you have to book tickets for non-household members.

  • Eric Wang

    Help my classmate to apply to Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card.

  • ednpub

    I’ve been doing so much reading over the past two years on this topic… my friends now refer to me as Rain Man when it comes to miles and points. But, they mean it in the best possible way since I was able to coach them through the process of earning and burning miles for an awesome trip to Italy this past spring. They’re spoiled by business/first class from here on out…

  • Valerie

    My mom, who is alone in china, had a stroke in August and is very emotionally distressed. The miles I collected in this mile/point game has enabled me and other family members to visit her to help her pass this difficult time. I’m thankful to have found flyertalk and the numerous blogs that started me in this game.

  • Nick L.

    I have many friends (but mostly friends of friends) that ask me for more information about mile collecting. I now have a template email that lists and describes my favorite blogs (TPG is up in the top 3!) that I sent out to them. Now If only I can convince my wife to become more involved… maybe another 26k US Air miles will help!

  • Rick Sch.

    I have flown missionaries into my small town to help them raise funds for orphans in Ukraine. I lived in Ukraine for 2 years and my wife is from there…in addition, I get to use my points to fly my mother-in-law over from time to time…some people might think that is a lose-lose, but my mother-in-law is actually awesome so it’s a wash:)

  • Biggles209

    I’m flying my daughter to 12 medical school interviews, and putting her up in a hotel at most of them. Best use ever!

  • bryanschmiedeler

    I recently helped out my father-in-law, although he will only be using the points the first week of January.

    My wife and father-in-law are going on a holiday cruise out of Miami. He is picking up the tab for the cruise. I used Chase Miles transferred to Southwest to get three tickets free from KC to Ft. Lauderdale (short bus trip to Miami). Used Hyatt points and free nights from their credit card for 2 rooms for 3 nights at the Hyatt Regency Miami. On the way back my wife and I are using SW points for the flights back from FLL to MCI. But my father-in-law said that he would like to visit some friends in Key West. So I used Avios for a short flight on AA from Miami to Key West. Then I bough a ticket on Delta for a flight 4 days later to MCI through Atlanta. Used some Delta miles to get him upgraded to First Class!!!

    Bryan

  • Maxibo11

    I was invited to a friend’s wedding in Rio but couldn’t afford the ticket. I knew my uncle in Chicago was racking up the miles on AA and not using any of them. I struck a deal with him- I would train his obnoxious Airdale, teach his youngest son (my cousin) how to swim and work in his hair salon sweeping hair in exchange for miles! My duties yielded me a round trip mileage ticket, which got me to my wedding and then on to Buenos Aires on the same ticket. Never under estimate the power of a good barter!

  • Brian

    Hmm…This isn’t with points and miles, but I am using my 2 companion passes to bring friends to Spring Training next year on US Air. Both are from the sign-up bonus for the card and will still cost $99, but (530+99+99)/3 is still better than 3 full price tickets at the $400 level they are currently at for the cheapest airline….CVG never has good prices. PHX during spring training also never has good prices. Win-Win for me! Ha!

  • chunyu chen

    I helped my friend with getting the best signing up bonus for credit card and told him how to manage his miles with awardwallet

  • Joan

    Cash was tight when my husband had to purchase expensive, last minute tix to IL for his Dad’s funeral. I got him award travel…one way on UA and one way on AA.

  • Matt

    My cousin and her husband couldn’t afford a nice honeymoon. I sent them to Paris, a city she’s always wanted to go to, first class on the new British Airways first class. Getting a massage in the BA lounge almost kept her from actually getting on the plane!

  • JimmyPITT

    I donate my miles two times a year to cover my grandmother’s travel to and from Italy so she can see all of her grandchildren and family

  • Kevin King

    My sister-in-law had a long journey to become a US Citizen. After becoming a citizen, she wanted to fly home to Venezuela to see her mother and siblings and introduce them to my brother. However, the cost was prohibitive. I assisted her and my brother in obtaining a miles card and donated 15,000 miles to their account. Instead of paying $2400 for tickets, they spent under $200!

  • AC

    I help my friends to plan a trip to Maldives by collecting miles/points. They got lucky to fly Singapore A380 First Class (seats turn into double beds!) when the was a “system upgrade” last year by using the United miles! On top of that, after Supreme Court shut down Prop 8, they immediately got married in California so this trip turned into a honeymoon trip for them!

  • Landon

    My father needed to go to Vietnam to see his sick father. We did not have enough money for a ticket so I used miles to fly both my parents to Vietnam. 130,000 miles well spent =)

  • nammak

    Flew my cousin and his fiance out to meet the west coast family who couldn’t make the wedding for health reasons.

  • K.G. Gut.

    Before my mom passed away her ‘dying wish’ to my father was “Your next wife isn’t getting my miles!” (Mom had a wonderfully dark sense of humor). Last August we honored my mother’s memory with a family trip to Florence, Italy (Six of us, all on Points!). Thank you Mom!

  • Brian

    My in-laws aren’t big players in the points and miles game. However, they have been able to accumulate some Skymiles through the years. A few months back they were planning a trip to do Family History Research. They mentioned they had a few miles saved up to book at least one award ticket. I didn’t think that was good enough, so I gave them the remaining needed to make up the difference for a second award ticket. Everyone should make spending money rewarding; get those points and miles!

  • chrisb97

    I helped my mom get to see her new grandchild across the country for the first time, but booking a last minute ticket.

  • Allison

    We have given friends hotel nights.

  • Joe

    I helped my friend out with a free ticket to New Zealand by telling him to apply for 2 American credit cards. He loved the trip and wants to go back next year.

  • Kevin

    A friend of mine had to change up his plans to propose to his now wife. He had scheduled a balloon ride which was canceled due to high winds. I was able to call SPG and book a room for them about 15 min later and he was able to pull the trigger and surprise her with a suite for the night. All of this was done at about 2am.

  • greg

    There is the obvious — you site is a great resource of all that is going on with FF miles — thanks! I shared with my coworker Adam the bootstraping way of booking 2 AA flights with miles cheaply by buying a HNL / DFW / PAR flight with a stopover in DFW where he lives during a peak to Europe and the recently discounted mileage awards to Hawaii AA had.

  • David D

    On a recent trip to Atlanta (from BOS) I learned of a friend’s father passing away. My ticket was not changeable, it was a very busy travel weekend, and a new ticket to NYC for the funeral was $800+. My father in law was able to confirm a one way for 25k miles last minute (only 1st available) and I arrived the night before in time to wish my last goodbyes to a great man.

  • HCSmooth66

    Told a friend about my first premium cabin award booking that had an around the world routing with stops in Hong Kong, Bangkok and Amman all for signing up for 1 credit card. She immediately looked up cards to apply for and has taken her first steps toward being an addict like us :) So proud.

  • York

    I took advantage of the US Airways 100% bonus miles for share miles to book two round trip business class tickets from PEK to SFO for my parents. The cost per ticket is a little over $1000, what a steal!

  • Dave

    I helped walk my buddy through the process to get the SW Companion Pass via the two Chase SW cards, so him and his wife could join me and my wife traveling across the US together!

  • Big Boy Travel

    About a year ago I used the 100% Skymiles transfer bonus I heard about on
    @thepointsguy website to help my friends save a ton of money on their honeymoon!
    We turned 30,000 miles into 120,000 miles for only $900 which they were able to use to buy 2 round trip tickets from MSP to Hawaii with worth $1,800! It made their budget honeymoon come true.

  • Rick

    My parents and relatives were in town for our wedding and all the hotel prices were charging astronomical prices due to a huge convention that week. Fortunately, we found a Category 2 Starwood hotel and bought, yes bought, the miles needed for redemption (~140) and it still ended up costing just a third of their asking price ($420).

  • Aimee

    I helped my parents figure out how to maximize their points earnings with credit cards, and using the shopping portals for extra miles. As a result, they are finally planning the honeymoon they never got, 21 years later. Better late than never!

  • asar

    Booked my parents roundtrip from India to US using United miles

  • Eric S

    My first elite status came from a friend who gifted it to me as one of his Chairman’s Preferred perks on US Air. Now I’m hooked….

  • Elaine

    Many have helped me! A recent convert to the points and miles game told me all about it. Scott of Hack My Trip helped us get a PNW meet-up group going, Matt of Saverocity helped me with my first award booking, and George of TBB gave me some suggestions about visiting Istanbul. And of course there were many, many people on FT who offered lots of advice too. I really appreciate all the sharing.

  • DCdilemmas

    I was an unpaid intern in DC when my sister was getting married in Philippines. My boss found out about the wedding when I asked for vacation days. She then surprised me with a ticket to Philippines using her Alaska miles on Delta that afternoon – best unpaid internship and boss!

  • Yankees

    Was in need of 5k AA miles to get to a family event in Budapest, I called my brother-in-law who gave me his login info where I payed a couple of bucks to share with myself 5k miles.

  • Leigh

    Just last week I used what I’ve learned about the ITA Matrix to help my brother come home. He lives in Paris and hasn’t been back to the States in two years. Our dog is getting older and he really wanted to come back and see her, since she can’t come when we visit him. Searching on the airlines’ websites was only bringing up $1000+ fares, but using the ITA Matrix to get specific flight numbers, we found a fare for half that amount and he’ll be able to come home to see Bean.

  • Jon

    Helped a friend learn how to redeem his mountain of Chase UR points by pointing him to the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (he has many points now from Freedom bonus categories).

  • tigermark82

    Booked a flight from CLT to IAH for a friend that would have cost him $420 for 20k dividend miles.

  • Dru

    My friend escaped from Cuba to the US and got his green card. His father died in Cuba, but he didn’t yet have the resources to fly back for the funeral. So, I used my USAirways miles to get him a ticket to Havana through Toronto on Air Canada. Even now, I smile to think how happy he was to be able to go home.

  • Jamey

    The Points Guy was the first blog that I started reading and got me into the miles and points game along with credit card churning.

  • Corey

    Last June my girlfriend were planning on going on a missionary trip with our church to Thailand but we had no money or jobs. Luckily I had miles. I used my miles on me and my girlfriend since she’s canadian and didn’t know anything about miles. I was able to get us a long layover in Hong Kong, an open jaw in Thailand, and a stopover in Japan. We had an amazing time and even got to see Myanmar. However, in the end I didn’t have enough miles for both of us to get home. I opted to be the one stranded in Japan until I figured something out. Days before my girlfriend was heading back my dad stepped up and used his miles on me to get home. In the beginning I was helping someone with miles but then it was me being helped. This is why I love miles and how they helped me in the worst and best of times. =]

  • Uri

    I helped my friend realize he had about 10,000 MR points hidden away since he witched AMEX cards. I was helped by the good people at FT to get my accor points converted to AVIOS.

  • Jim

    I got my friend into the miles and points game and since then he’s booked two trips to Europe at a very affordable cost.

  • Candice

    I was able to use 25k airline miles to get my stepmother to her father’s funeral earlier this year. She had just lost her job, and couldn’t afford the ticket out of pocket. We live in Alaska, and last minute tickets to the lower 48 were well over $1000. Having points available gives us peace of mind in family emergencies.

  • Rob D

    I was able to fly my mother up to visit her mother (my grandmother) for a surprise visit.

  • jarrad m

    I used my miles to help my aunt fly from LAX to SDF using AMEX redemption on Delta. In exchange, she is watching my cat while I take a big trip to Cape Town using my UAL / Chase points!

  • Terry K

    Got my mom a ticket to my grandmothers bedside before she past away. Tickets were over $1000. it’s good to have points!

  • DisqustingDave

    My friend O. got my rebooked and out of Boston on an award ticket after Hurricane Sandy. I couldn’t even get through to an agent.

  • Michael

    I helped my mother-in-law leave my house earlier than planned to get back to her own home.

  • Martin

    I once helped this old lady who was moaning about how she really wanted a Business class seat. I realized she had a Delta Gold card in her hand so I asked her if she had any miles to use to upgrade. She didn’t know how to check so I took out my iPad and we checked her account and found that she had a 150,000 miles so I told her that maybe she could ask for an upgrade using miles. She asked and was given a business class seat although she had to convince the flight attendant. All in all, she got her business class seat and since she didn’t know what to do with the rest of the miles, she upgraded me with her.

  • John

    Since 2010, my sister and I have made it a goal to run one marathon each year. The tradition has allowed us to travel to some pretty incredible races, including the Paris Marathon and the Big Sur Marathon in California. This year, we decided along with a group of running friends to train for the Mount Desert Island Marathon in Bar Harbor, ME as it is supposedly one of the most beautiful American races. Having started nursing school in the past year, my sister was initially resigned to sitting this one out, but I was able to book her ticket on Southwest points to keep the tradition alive. Now we’re all getting excited to hit the course in just a few weeks!

  • schwallie

    I’ve been helping my significant other with points so that we can pay for two upcoming trips!

  • hc

    Used miles to fly my boyfriend to the US for Christmas to meet my parents for the first time.. in business. We’re married now, but he still owes me a business class flight ;-)

  • Matt

    Just got my wife a ticket using Avios to her sister’s upcoming graduation – only 9,000 miles! Love the short trips.

  • Armando86

    I helped my sister using my United miles for travel to Central America so she could visit me during my Peace Corps Service!

  • eddie

    I am flying my buddy out to the World Cup 2014. My parents never took me on a plane (teachers, couldn’t afford to take the family), and since I started flying at the age of 27 (late bloomer), I have always felt guilty whenever I fly somewhere. So I try and pay it forward, after accumulating many miles for work travel. I like sharing them, so what better way to congratulate a friend for his MBA, than by taking us to BRASIL!

  • Billf

    I sent my daughter to Hawaii with my points as a graduation present.

  • paula gulbicki

    I helped my sister by telling her about the Fairmont credit card offer. She will be going to Vancouver and needed a place to stay. They offer two free nights with the card sign up.

  • Greg

    Used avios to upgrade a friend on a BA trip to London/Dublin

  • Matt S

    Thanks for the giveaway. A few years ago my brother, his wife and 2 young kids were on their way back from a vacation at the Outer Banks in NC. I happened to be working in the Baltimore area and it was a nice stopping point for them. I was able to use points and an upgrade to get them into a Hyatt suite early enough in the day for them to enjoy themselves and was able to get them all free breakfast the next day. I know it meant a lot to them to save the extra $ and to stay in a room they otherwise never would.

  • Gary Rexrode

    My wife’s bucket list included a trip to Ireland. As we now live in Hawaii, that trip would be expensive. Our friend, Mike W, encouraged us to take advantage of the US Airways 2 for 1 share miles program in 2012. Then, he monitored Expert Flier for us and identified business class seats for both of us, round trip to Ireland on those shared miles. We made the trip in June of this year and my wife is ready to do it again. Over $8000 worth of airline tickets for the $1100 cost of the shared miles. Another check on the bucket list. Thanks to Mike W !

  • 2ruse

    used some miles for an upcoming trip with my cousin (now working on building up her own balance) to Morocco – flying business class on TK (her first international biz class flight – i cannot wait to see her face when she sees the flat bed, food, lounge…..)

  • Lynn

    I planned a Baltic cruise for 19 of us. I showed everyone how to get the free flights to London, plus some free nights of hotels. Some who signed up at the end didn’t have time or availability to do this, but still had the miles to use later. No one realized any of this was possible. I’m also helping with a church trip to Israel now. There are 9, so far, flying free, and only needing to pay the land portion. Some are also staying extra nights free at the Hilton Tel Aviv before the tour along with gold status. It is fun to see people be able to take advantage of something they didn’t even know existed.

  • KT

    I helped my mom to come to the US to see her first grandson from Japan!

  • ConcernedNavy

    My friend is in the Navy and I book flights so he can go home and see his family while on leave.

  • Duane

    I used my United miles to fly my sister-in-law from Lima to Newark so she could get cancer treatments in the US.

  • pat

    I have to travel for work, and my spouse stays at home with the kids.
    I used my points to give my spouse a get-away vacation to Palm Beach to relax and visit friends who moved there. Meanwhile … I stayed home with the kids.

  • FlavCity

    You only get one honeymoon(hopefully!), and one of my good friends helped make mine unforgettable by using his 2 free hyatt nights to book the Park Hyatt Buenos Aires under my name. I already booked 2 nights with my rewards, but instead of paying $800/night for the remaining, my friend came through and left me more money for steak, tango, dulce de leche!

  • Jeremyh

    I helped a co-worker go from always talking about someday being able to afford to take his wife on the honeymoon they never had, too actually heading to Hawaii with her this coming winter!

  • Dustin

    My sister, brother-in-law and two kids got a postdoc position in Europe, but postdoc’s don’t exactly pay much. I helped them navigate getting credit cards and book free tickets to fly out, and to come back to visit for my brother’s wedding.

  • Bo

    I helped my grandfather visit his home in Asia on business class using my united miles.

  • Shelly Koester Athmann

    just used some points to send my daughter to visit a friend in Denver for a long weekend. My daughter just went through a breakup after dating 2 years and this will be a great pick me up for her.

  • Isahn

    my younger brother is a freshman at the University of Illinois. its his first time away from home(he is an international student from India). Used my miles to fly him out to stay with me during thanksgiving.

  • Evan

    I helped my great grandmother in law save her united miles before her account went inactive.

  • Ashish

    I helped my parents to come to the US from India to see their newborn grandson!

  • Evan

    I sent my parents’ on their first international adventure using points I had amassed.

  • Peter H

    I am lucky to get to know TPG MMS and Lucky starting year 2010 which I accumulated few million miles. Right now. I am using part of these miles and hotel points for missionary work – missionary workers to Germany and china plus pastors to my hone church. Also I have used what I learned and helped more than 25 persons in my church and office

  • Saif

    My best friend and his wife were going on their honeymoon to Costa Rica and and wanted to use their United miles for the trip, but they were about 15k miles short. I spotted my friend the extra miles and also helped them book their award tickets. Not only did I help make their honeymoon dream come true, but I also arranged them a “free one-way” on the tail end of their trip to visit his in-laws later this year, and also used my premier account to get them Econ+ seating!

  • http://www.themarketbrothers.blogspot.com aureo11

    Thanks to reading TPG, over the past couple years I’ve been able to accumulate a lot of miles and redeem them for flights for my family members. I’ve booked both my In-laws on round trip United to Hawaii this winter, and last summer when my wife needed to fly alone to India, I booked her in United First Class so she would enjoy the journey without me.

    I’m looking forward to finally taking my first trip with my wife with the miles I’ve built up in a couple weeks.

  • Helen S

    I’m helping one of my sisters to get a Southwest credit card with a 50,000 mile bonus so she can visit our Florida sister more than just once a year. We’ll have a 3-sister reunion.

  • Joe P.

    I took my elderly mother and our neighbor (her elderly friend) to New Orleans in October 2012. The elderly neighbor was my guest on Bourbon Street at 1:00 am on a Saturday night. She said she saw things she had never seen in in 74 years of life!

  • Jo

    Bought a ticket for my mom from Morocco to the US using miles instead of paying a steep $2k for a coach flight

  • Eric F

    My mum transferred her then Northwest miles so that I could redeem my first ticket to London!

  • MK

    Bought a business class ticket for my uncle so he could fly from the East Coast to San Francisco to be at his daughter’s wedding.

  • tressa

    I used AA miles to enable a co-worker to visit her dying sister.

  • peachykeen

    Taught my girlfriend about credit card sign up bonuses. Got us First Class on Cathay Pacific roundtrip to Asia for 100K each Amex membership rewards (converted to 150K Avios, pre-devaluation).

  • OhanaMiles

    My brother-in-law transferred 10000 Hawaiian Airlines miles to me so I would have enough to go on our first trip to Australia. Hawaiian is great because it doesn’t charge any transfer fees and the process is pretty instantaneous. Because of this, later I was able to return the same amount back to him without worrying about the cost of doing so.

  • Jim

    I used 3 of my AA systemwide upgrades for my 8 month pregnant sister, her husband on crutches after having surgery, brother-in-law’s 70 year old mother and my 1 year old nephew for Shanghai to Los Angeles last year. They flew in Business class and were able to get some rest on their way from Hong Kong to Boston.

  • Christopher C

    My wife and I decided to surprise my mother with a trip to Peru and Easter Island last year. I used my British Airways Avios points to purchase her ticket. It was an incredible trip. When I was young, my mother took me to many places around the world. It was great to treat her this time. It is a trip I will remember for the rest of my life.

  • Vaidy

    My aunt got pregnant (after trying for a long time !). She wanted to get her parents here for the birth of the twins (two bundles of joy for her). As I was staying with them, I guided them (with help from all you bloggers – TPG, MMS, FrequentMiler) into applying for credit cards & getting miles. Thus, she was able to get enough miles to book a round trip for her parents from India & in Biz class. In her own words with eyes full of tears – “I’ve never even dreamt of getting them in Biz class ! You helped me do it for aged folks (her parents) so that they can be comfortable in their long journey but at a fraction of the cost. I can’t thank you enough”.

    Just wanted to share this as this gratitude is for all you bloggers out there & not just me ! :)

  • Rob philip

    An up-and-coming travel blogger was looking for a place to go during her spring break two years ago and I used 25K United miles to send her on a week long adventure.

    It’s easy to forget, as we try to organize out first/business class adventures to maximize points that a “cheap” domestic ticket is out of the question for a lot of people.

  • Brendan

    I took my parents to Provence, France in business class as a thank you for paying for my college tuition right after I graduated.

  • Cbender49

    I love to help my friends book trips with miles, and thoroughly enjoy giving back to my family by helping them book award trips or using my miles to book one for them. I’ve booked awards twice for my mother in PA to visit my brother’s growing family in MO and it is so rewarding. These are the times we’ll never get back.

    Great contest! thanks!

  • Terri

    Used points and miles to get my mom’s bedside before she passed….

  • Miro

    Used avios to upgrade a girlfriend on a BA trip to HKG

  • Alex

    My dad allowed me to use his US Air miles to book a flight from ord- ath this past September to go and visit my mom in Greece. Saved myself $1500! and just paid $78 in fees! :)

  • Jfadds

    Held a friend get companion pass

  • Mj

    Taught co worker how to use vanillas

  • andy D

    Having another 30,000 miles in my account. Plus 25,000 and then I will transfer 50,000 US miles to my parents account to earn additional 50,000 miles. That will be enough for them to visit Europe in November.

  • Pc

    Used my club Carlson points to set up a 6night Paris surprise stay for my husband

  • rajnish

    helped my co-worker fly with him family to miami and san juan.

  • Vicky

    Was able to educate a friend in Sydney as to the value of miles and points. Her trip from SYD to BGI was priced at $3200 but I was able to help her purchase AA points for $1800 for the exact routing, saving her $1400.

  • David

    On August 23rd, my wife’s best friend (very frequent flier) used her miles to book a last-second ticket from ORD to SAN for my mother-in-law when my wife called me (I was out of town as well) to say her water broke and our first baby was coming 5 weeks early. My mother-in-law arrived at 3:30 (after leaving her home for the airport at 7AM without a ticket or a plan) and our daughter was born 4 hours later. I can’t thank our great friend for utilizing her miles to get my mother-in-law there in time for the birth of her fist grandchild enough.

  • Neal

    Helped bring my parents to London and Paris for 2 weeks (their first time ever in Europe) with all the hotel rooms and flights booked in Biz and First class with points!

  • GordonOH

    We used US Airways miles to send a family member his new wife to Ireland for their honeymoon. They both have Irish roots, so this was an exceptional trip for them.

  • Seri Kelana Mokhtar

    With your help, last year my partner and I used USAirways share miles promo to get two business class tickets from Australia to Europe for less than $2K. It was the best trip ever!

  • Thomas

    Non-point-collector friends of mine wanted to go to Italy, but could really only afford to do so by getting their airfare (essentially) free. So, I was able to map out for them a very simple credit card strategy for earning the necessary miles (got to love Chase business cards) and then walked them throught the booking process to find the right Saver awards. Long story short: they’ll soon be winging their way to Italy on the cheap. Job done.

  • scott b

    used points to send my wife on her 40th birthday and my daughter for her 16th birthday to Paris for 5 days.

  • Yanfei

    Transferred my Amex points to Avios and redeemed tickets on Cathay Pacific for my niece to travel between Hong Kong, where she is going for college, and her hometown Shanghai.

  • Michele

    My sister & brother-in-law have for some time been fascinated by my point/mile collecting. Recently they asked if I’d show them the ropes and help with their dream trip to Fiji. To get them started I put on my own little version of frequent traveler university where I tuned them in to my most-trusted blogs (including this one), explained airline alliances and transfer partners, and finally got down to business working backward from their goal of a week in Fiji to help them formulate a plan incorporating the best CC sign-up bonuses for air and hotels to get them there. And right now, they’re well on their way to making the ‘honeymoon they never got’ a reality!

  • beth

    Used points and miles to send family on a honeymoon!

  • Dina

    My father in law used his miles to send me and my husband to Italy in 1st class on our Honeymoon. That was the first example I had that miles earned from airlines actually have a purpose!

  • misaacmom

    I donated some of my points to charity a few years back. I cannot remember the details but I do remember thinking that it was great that this was an option.

  • Phil

    When I returned home from Afghanistan, I flew United from Frankfurt to ORD. Someone in the airport used his miles to upgrade me to GlobalFirst on a 747. I rode the whole way home on a lie flat seat, eating filet mignon, watching TV I hadn’t seen in months, and having drinks I hadn’t had in months. My mom wanted to surprise me at my connecting gate at ORD, and after a couple of flight delays, United agents shifted her from flight to flight, getting on and off planes, until I finally arrived and we had a reunion in the concourse. Thanks whoever you were, and thanks United!

  • Drew

    Used my miles to book a trip for my girlfriend and her mom to take a trip to LA after her mom had major surgery.

  • Natalie

    I used my miles and hotel points to get my entire family (husband, parents, sister, and niece) on the first family vacation we’ve ever taken together to Charlotte, NC this month! We leave next week and I can’t think of a better way to spend my hard earned miles/points!

  • Ernest S.

    I was able to take my sister to my cousin’s graduation party in Seattle via Southwest (thanks to an Ultimate Rewards transfer). It was not only a great party, but also a way to spend some quality time with my sister!

  • Kay

    I just started in the miles/points game last year and family members were a little skeptical. My daughter goes on a mission trip every year to Guatemala and I was able to convince her to apply for the 50K Delta card so that she could fly on points in Feb. 2014. She did!! And she found a reduced award for 43,000 points and booked it! This reduced the cost of her trip and she is so thankful as she lost her job in May!! Now she’s hooked!

  • Steve

    We were able to send my sister to the Caribbean for vacation because she couldn’t afford and now she’s starting her own swimwear line and it’s going well. Travel can be an inspiration in so many different ways.

  • Tim

    My dad signed me up for my first FF program, Continental Onepass when I was a little kid so thanks Dad!

  • Justyna

    I used my miles to book a one way award ticket for my mom who is flying to PL and is not sure when she will be coming back to US. Much better option than buying the rt ticket and then paying to change the return date.

  • Matt

    I have 2 friends who really wanted to go Peacock Bass fishing. For there birthday I booked them flights to Miami using Avios points flying on AA and got them a charter for their birthday present. My wife and I tagged along and got a rental car (using points) and we stayed in the Keys with them for a week. We had great time and they caught a fish they had been wanting to for years! (Actually around 20 of them)

  • Dennis

    My sister offered me her unused miles for a coach ticket that would have otherwise cost me more than a thousand dollars.

  • Jacob

    My dad always uses his miles to shuttle me around.

  • Sonny

    My grandfather decided last minute to travel to Africa to visit family and I helped him out getting a last minute business class trip for just 110k US miles and it saved him thousands of dollars!

  • Chris R

    I was able to book a trip for my mother, who has only flown one time in her life for her honeymoon before having me and my brother, and my brother who has never flown at all, to come visit me on the East coast from the midwest entirely with points!!! This once in a lifetime event for them was something they will remember forever. Not only did we see a show in NYC, we also did a tour of Boston. Thank you traveling job and to top it all off it was a birthday gift for me! ( wanted to see family versus going on a vacation)

  • Nick Ewen

    Last year, one of my best friends was surprising his wife with a trip to Spain from Atlanta. He wanted to do at least the overnight flight in business, but didn’t have nearly enough miles for two tickets. He asked for my help, and I was able to get him a r/t paid economy ticket with B on the way there and T on the way back for only $200 more than a r/t ticket in T both ways. He then used 25,000 miles to upgrade (after I checked EF for Z inventory, of course!). They loved it!

  • andy2343

    Actually used this same promotion from last year to get first class tickets to Hawaii for my parents’ anniversary!

  • Annalisa

    Showing many friends and family members how miles can open up the world!

  • JD D

    The folks who have helped me the most with miles and points are the amazing bloggers out there like TPG! I try to pay it forward and I’m currently helping a friend, who just hit his Chase Sapphire 40k bonus, plan a trip to Italy :)

  • jdshscja

    Three friends of mine having been working non-stop for 2 years, with no vacation, on a childrens non-profit that they started. So I decided to take them all on a 10 day trip to Tokyo in April, using 200k AA miles for 4 off-peak saaver awards.

  • Justin Johnson

    Once a year I take a two or three week trip to Europe. For the last two years I have been using my miles to pay for the trip and at the same time take one of my friends who others wise would never be able to pay a trip on their own. In the end it is a win win as I get someone to travel with and to help split the cost of hotels and food.

  • Mary Iacono

    My mom helped me get home to see my niece baptized with her USAir points. I’d love to return the favor and get her out here to help me try on my wedding dress.

  • Matt

    Helped a family member book a trip to Israel for a bat-mitzvah. Couldn’t afford to pay cash.

  • Ruth

    Ok so a very recent story more to do with loyalty programs in general. I’ve just got home to Australia from the US where I went to a wedding in Boston. The wedding was at the Hyatt Boston Harbour, a beautiful location. There was going to be a few Hyatt opportunities on the trip (including the Bachelor party in Vegas) so I decided to do the Hyatt Diamond challenge knowing I wouldn’t complete it but wanting to enjoy the perks while we were on holidays. I matched my IHG Plat status (achieved with about 3 total stays last year).
    I had tried to use one of my confirmed suite upgrades for the night of the wedding (Junior Suite) but as they had 3 weddings going on that weekend no suites were available at 3pm check in time.
    Instead they upgraded us to the Presidential Suite!!
    We of course handed this over to the Bride and Groom and the wedding parties had a great room to do all their getting ready photos etc in. Plus a whopping Jacuzzi for the wedding night :-)
    It was a really great extra present to be able to give.

  • Dan

    I used miles to get a last minute ticket for my brother in law to attend his uncle’s funeral

  • Andy F.

    I’ve spent 90k*2 for my parents Asia trip in biz class!

  • Brian Gallagher

    I donated my miles to a non-profit. The organization used my points to bring their board members to their annual board meeting.

  • LRZ

    I helped my mother-in-law by using points to get her a flight from the west coast, so she could come and see our new baby!

  • Randy

    My daughter, her husband, and 14 month old grandson drove home from St. Louis, MO to Richmond, VA. While I offered to get them a room half way, she remembered our drives when she was a kid and thought “no sweat.” Well some kids travel better than others.

    On the way back I insisted they stop half way, and got them a IHG® Rewards Club PointBreaks room. They stayed at a comfortable Holiday Inn express with a pool for the toddler and a free breakfast. They were AMAZINGLY grateful for a much better trip home.

  • Candace P

    I gave my son points so he could meet us in LA after his 27 month service in the Peace Corps.

  • Karl P

    I gave my friend points so he could visit his ill mother in Florida, so he didn’t have to drive from New Jersey.

  • Michael

    A few months ago I saved a friend major money sending her from IAD to LAX on United.

  • emanuel

    My friend was trying to book a flight last second. I let him use my miles for united and I called united saying their site had been down for a few weeks and this is why I waited so long to book, and I convinced them after an hour to drop the late booking fee of $75

  • JustSaying

    I just booked my two kids on US Air to Normandy next summer for the 70th reunion of D-Day to link up with my wife and I will already be there. My father in law arrived 2 weeks after D-day and we recently found out (long after he died) that he was heavily involved involved in the battle of St Lo. We had recently found out thru NARA the after action report of his unit that gave the “8 digit grid” for where his unit was the day LTG Leslie McNair died when US bombers dropped 200 bombs behind friendly lines. The only problem was we couldn’t figure out how to translate the “8 digit grid” to Google Earth. I found a kind gentleman (Sam Knight, Blue Marble Geographics) in an online blog who took the time to teach me how to translate French military grids to Google Earth. Now when I pick up my kids from their flight I’ll be able to use my iPad to go straight to their grandfather’s battle position………….and help other families trace their father’s footsteps via the internet………it just doesn’t get any kooler than that!

  • Chad

    I used points to take my buddy hiking in the Colorado mountains when he got back from Afghanistan. I would use these miles towards taking us all out for drinks in Dublin.

  • Scott Lipner

    After my brother got into law school, I flew him from State College to Denver with USAirways DM where I met him and we spent three days shredding Snowmass and Aspen. Used 50k+ on the 3 day lift tickets through Membership Rewards.

  • Mike H

    I have taught one of my co-workers about the “miles game.” Prior to me, his wife and him had never really been on vacations because it gets expensive. Well, they are currently out of the country due to the miles game! I’d love to use the extra US Airways miles to take a trip with my wife.

  • Dave Mo

    I booked my aunt’s flight for our family’s trip to see my sister and her partners now-legal wedding in Maine!

  • Dee

    We’ve used miles to
    *get an employee to the hospital in another state when her truck driver husband had a heart attack
    *get to our son when he had to have emergency surgery
    *take our 5 kids and my 94 year old mother to family events (weddings, college graduation)
    *put my daughters, sisters, niece, and sister’s friends up in a hotel for my niece’s destination bridal shower
    * fly employees to spend the holidays with relatives
    *get our youngest daughter back and forth to Japan twice during her junior year abroad… her last leg in first class
    *visit our other kids in Europe when they did their years abroad
    * teach our young adult kids to follow TPG so they can travel with miles (it’s working)

  • oxo

    I don’t have a tear-drenched story, but I did help my best friend top-up his FlyingBlue account and join me for holidays in Greece ;)

  • Ramsey

    As a physician, I’ve been able to help several people who were ill on flights, sometimes by letting them have my business class seat upgraded with miles.

  • Monique

    I gave my college student daughter points so that she could fly to Bangkok. From there she joined an organization working withrefugee Burmese children . She had an incredible experience helping others and ultimately helping herself

  • Or N

    Used points I had with ElAl to fly a friend with me to Moscow last year. Wasn’t a great redemption to be honest but had no other choices hehe.

  • SC

    I helped redeem a business class seat for my cousin from Sydney to home for his wedding.

  • Cognitive Bias

    A couple of years ago we went to Disney World (Orlando) for my daughters 3rd birthday. We were joined by our friends who have a kid around the same age. I vouched for booking the hotel under the pretext that we will share the cost later, but surprised them by booking at the WDW Swan resort using my SPG points and managing a upgrade for both the families. They didn’t have to pay a penny and were pleasantly surprised with the upgrade! We had a lot of fun in that trip.

  • Justin Does…

    I had to get home for a family emergency and a friend hooked me up with a free ticket using his points!

  • Jackie

    When my 20 year old niece was a toddler, I volunteered to babysit for her while my sister went on a trip to the Grand Canyon. I also helped make that dream trip possible for her by giving her enough of my hard-earned AAdvantage miles to fly from NY to AZ. Oh yes I also drove my sister and her friend to the airport a couple of hours away during a snow storm! We are very close, and I’d do anything to help my sis!

  • Pat

    I spent my miles to take my partners to visit my parents in Thailand last year!

  • Fanfoot

    Used miles and points to attend my uncle’s funeral. Both to recognize him and also to reconnect with family who weren’t expecting me given how far away I live. Was an incredibly positive experience, so glad I was there.

  • Michael

    Last years US BANK Olympic sign up bonus, enough points to send my nephew and his girlfriend from SFO/JFK.

  • socalgecko

    Five years ago I used miles t fly my mother and her brother who she hadn’t seen in over ten years to Los Angeles so they could spend Christmas together with my brothers and I. Neither knew the other was coming until they ran into each other at LAX when they arrived. I had timed the flights so that they’d get it LA within half an hour of each other. As it so happened, I was late to pick them up and so they found each other in baggage claim and had a tearful (happy) reunion before I even reached them. My mom said it was one f the best Christmas presents she’d ever received.

  • Joseph Hsieh

    http://fly101.blogspot.com is my mentor! I learned everything about milage & credit card stuff starting from his website. He even replies my questions in email efficiently. Now I learn from TPG, Flyertalk, Borading Area…etc, all I have to say is a big THANK YOU!

  • Rich

    I told people to subscribe and read The Points Guy Everyday !!
    It’s how I started , a d the funny part is I found TPG accident. !

  • http://blog.runbikeco.de/ Henrik Wist

    About a year after we married I used a bunch of miles to pay for a flight + rental car to get the two of us to the city where the pastor (and good friend!) who married us, had moved to. Fun times!

  • Dan Goldsmith

    I had to bring my Son home from University in North Carolina with the unexpected death of my father and everywhere I searched for a last minute flight from Charlotte to Toronto demanded 4x the normal price. I ended up using my US Airways miles and flying my son ton Buffalo. Which was not that bad. I would love to win these miles in case a situation ever comes up like this again.

  • Kimmy

    My inlaws lost everything when their house flooded during Katrina…a great use of miles was using 60k Usairways miles with the 5K credit card discount to get tickets to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary and see their house and the city rebuilt.

  • royce

    At the time I was in Penang, Malaysia on my around the world trip, when my friend messaged me that he was pretty messed up because he broke up with his girlfriend. He is a very emotional guy and a bit crazy. At the same time my mom separate from her husband and came home to Hawaii. Both were in need of someone to keep them company and help them through their tough times. My mom asked if I wanted to come home, but made it sound like if I wanted to not because she needed me. I could tell though that she wanted me back to have someone close. At the time I didn’t have enough miles to get home and last minute flights were a bit expensive from where I was to Hawaii. I decided that travel will always be there but family and friends are the most important things in life, so I agreed to receive some miles from her to get back home.

  • Jenny

    I’ve been working with brother in law to get him and his kids to Disneyworld in Florida. First I had he and his wife get the Starwood 30k offer. Right now, he finished his and his wife will finish hers before Christmas. When they are done, that will be 70k Starwood points, are enough for 8 nights at the Swan and Dolphin (10k per night + 5th night free) which is on the Disney grounds. When they have finished that step, I am having them him get the Southwest business and personal card. Southwest flies non stop from CMH to MCO and should be no problem in getting the whole family there. I am having him get both cards instead of one for each in an effort to try to get them the companion pass.

  • TerryH

    An elderly couple, neighbors of mine, were having trouble figuring out how to use their miles and points that they had been faithfully accumulating over the last 20 years. When they called the points or miles programs they only became more confused and were ready to give up. Happily I was able to organize what they had available and recommended one additional card they were both able to get. As a result I was able to help them book business class award tickets to Paris for a trip they have always wanted!

  • Harold

    I was given points for my honeymoon.

  • Bryan Tang

    I used some of my Air Canada status e-credits to upgrade my uncle, and that was a pleasant surprise for him

  • Ryan

    Taking my wife on her first business/first class flight on a long haul from EWR to HKG. She especially enjoyed the ice cream sundae! It’s really the least I could do as she’s been carrying around our first child for the last 7+ months.

  • Stephen

    My brother in laws mom got really sick and was given only a couple of months to live, due to finances he couldn’t fly home to see her (he had to fly you can’t drive to Hawaii). I had a ton of miles (due to some quality advice from you and some other bloggers) so I used some so he could go back and spend time with his mom. He and his little daughter were able to spend quality time with his mother before she passed away.

  • explorer77

    Helped the in-laws get in on Amex Plat 100k MR and will now help them book tix to Italy!

  • Jacqueline

    I was saving up all the points I could to pay for a trip after sitting for the bar exam. Instead, I took those points and helped pay for my entire family to come up to New York and see me graduate from law school – it was so worth it to see how proud everyone was of my achievements.

  • shonuffharlem

    My friend Eric travels for business and taught me a lot about using American Airlines miles effectively.

  • Jose

    I was planning on going to Italy by myself, and my father loosely floated the idea of joining me, which I jumped at. They already had the Chase Sapphire Card with a ton of points, so since time was too limited to get a AA card and have the points post in time (off-peak), we got him the CSP and then immediately transferred points to United. It was really great to spend two weeks with my father in Italy. Since I felt terrible about using United miles during AA off-peak, I of course made sure to get him a free one-way on the award :)

  • Lostabroad

    My boss absolutely loves Amex. We have about 5 different business accounts that we use for everything from operating expenses to building materials/supplies. He loves the customer service and points, as well as the fraud and purchase protection. While he earns a good deal of points as-is, I found new and creative ways to earn him even more. Whether through short lived double dips like the Home Depot one, or registering all of his cards for Dinning Rewards, I have figured out ways to explode his point earnings to crazy levels. Most recently, I have pushed the envelop by figuring out that I can just call Amex to pre-authorize purchases that would normally be outside of our already exaggerated spending limits. Single transaction Amex purchases for us used to never go over $30k a pop, and we typically wrote checks for anything higher than that. In my eyes, every large check going out the door was wasted point earning dollars. We had a bill recently for a quarter million dollars that we were about to pay in cash. I called Amex and explained to them that we never charge anything even remotely close to that amount, but considering that I was about to write a check directly to the supplier, why not just charge it and then immediately pay Amex? They loved the idea and approved the transaction. I earned a quarter million points in one transaction and looked like a hero to the boss, even though it wasn’t particularly difficult to set up. I’ve raked in over half a million last month alone just by questioning what can be charged and what can’t be charged.

  • bodphila

    I donated miles enough for a ticket to help the family of twin babies from AZ who both needed heart transplants in another state. The Mom needed help with the older kids, who were staying at a Ron McDonald house. Her sister was able to fly in using my United miles. (Both babies survived.)

  • dcturkey

    My wife and I used 60k Capital One Rewards miles to fly my mom out to the east coast to spend Thanksgiving with us last year

  • DavidJ

    I helped my family of 8 all travel to the island of Samoa on points. One part of the journey was even in business class (Auckland to Samoa).
    I learned much of what I used from travel blogs and flyertalk. It was the greatest family vacation ever!

  • Yati

    Just recently i used AA miles to fly a good friend from Europe to India and back so that he could join me and lots of family for a very special gathering. He hadn’t expected to come, but last minute i felt like he shouldn’t miss out and contacted him. I booked a ticket for him for the next morning and in one day he was able to adjust his plans so he could fly and make it in time for the celebrations. He stayed for just under a week. It was very spontaneous and he was very grateful. It really made me so happy to be able to do this for my friend. I may not be rich, but i’m pretty rich with miles, so i might as well be generous :)

  • Haowei Chen

    I once converted 26,000 UR points to my girlfriends Southwest account, so that she could come over to see my parents. Another time I used 32,500 UA miles to redeem a last minutes (almost) one-way ticket from Shanghai to San Diego for my mum! The ticket, if purchasing by cash, would cost $900+ since it was only few days before took off. The benefit from miles/points were great, as it helped me to see my parents and girlfriend, which is really exciting!

  • Andy

    I was given points to book my honeymoon trip.

  • Peter

    My friend and his newlywed wife had recently moved from California to Philly, and she was finishing up her residency as a Physician Assistant. She was having a really difficult time working 80 hours per week and was really stressed and wanted to visit her parents in Chicago. Being that my friend and his wife were young newlyweds and still in University, he was looking for a way to get her a flight to Chicago so she could spend some time with her family and relieve the stress. My friend did not have enough miles for a round trip ticket from PHL to ORD so he asked if I could sell him some or transfer some to his account. I felt really bad for his wife because she was crying and seemed to be on the verge of a breakdown or something. (My brother actually had a mental breakdown during his medical residency and ended up in the hospital as a result, so I had an idea of how she was feeling). I ended up finding them a round trip ticket using 15000 of my AVIOS points and $5.00 in tax. It was a last-minute ticket too (3 days before the actual flight, and on other airline programs, most charge a last-minute booking fee if within 7 days or so), and British Airways does not have any last-minute booking fees, so it worked out great. I just got the ticket for them and didn’t ask him to pay me back or anything as I figured it would help relieve some of their anxiety and stress on their end. They were very grateful and I was happy my points could be used in an ‘emergency’ to help out…

  • Zach H

    This past summer, I was taking a trip to Austria to finish up medical school and to visit my best friend who has been living overseas for the past four years working for the State Department. He was so excited to see me that he used his points to upgrade my United flights to business class! My first trans-Atlantic flight couldn’t have been any better!

  • TIN

    One of my friend want to visit her family but can’t afford for her husband to go along and she worried about her husband staying home alone. So I used my points to get them another ticket so both of them could visit their family together.

  • Sandeep B

    helped my dad book a BOM-CGK-BOM flight after realizing US Air only charges 30k R/T in Biz for those city pairs.

  • Zeke Kersey

    My dad had always wanted to go to England and take my mom and brother and me and show us the town that we (according to one of those early 70′s “trace your family name” businesses) but was never able to afford it when we were young. My mom passed away and dad remarried and his new wife wasn’t really thrilled to the idea of traveling with kids so we never went as a family.

    My brother and I had both traveled extensively and dad and stepmom did once we were out of the house. But in all the travels, dad never made it to “the homestead.”

    So, in the Summer of 2000, my brother and I decided we’d cash in some Priority Points and Delta Miles and we took dad on a two week trip to London, Suffolk and up into Scotland where my mother’s and my brother’s wife’s family were from. We had a great time and he shot over 30 rolls of film and a few hours of video.

    It was the last big trip he took as his health ended up declining over the next few years.

  • O.D.

    My best friend from college (A total bonehead) got married in June. We signed up for cards at football games together (to get free t-shirts) as freshmen and converted them to miles earning cards once we knew what we were doing. For 70K miles and $200, I booked them on a flight to Punta Cana as my gift. If it wasn’t for him I would never have signed up for my first credit card!

  • Esteban

    I helped my bosses getting to Europe for a conference, they did not believe it was possible using all the Amex MR points they had accumulated during so many years.

  • Brent H

    After my mother in law had a horrible, tiring, stressful trip, my partner and I gave her an unexpected upgrade for her LAX-BNE trip.

    We’re also in the process of sharing miles with friends to let them benefit from the 100% bonus on US Airways Dividend Miles.

  • Jay

    After hiding and taking proposal pics, we put a friend and fiancee in St Regis for a night with spg points just a month ago.

  • Sandeep

    I used my United Miles to fly my parents from India to New York
    in Business class Lufthansa. They had never travelled in Business class and
    Lufthansa Boeing 747-8 from India to Frankfurt was an experience of lifetime with huge flat bed seats in Business class.

    That ticket was 60,000 miles one-way whereas the retail price of one way business ticket was around 3000$ at that time. This was a great happiness to see my parents travelling in business class, which I could not afford without miles.

  • Zila

    When My neighbor’s third baby was born, her rare blood condition required several trips to the famed Children Hospital of Philadelphia. After the neighbors got together, we were able to collect most of the initial funding for treatment. To save on travel costs, only the mother flew with her girl to Philly. I volunteered my USAIR points for a direct flight JAX-PHL, and I had a few points to spare, but I am glad I was able to do it for them.

  • cindycindy

    My parents and cousin traveled from Shanghai to New York on Emirates few years ago. It was a more than 20 hours flight with a stopover in Dubai. And they credited all miles they got into my account. However, all these miles only worth a ticket from Bangkok to Hongkong. feeling hurt…lol

  • Jeff

    I am an M4 and residency interview costs a lot. Thanks for AA discount award chart for platinum cc holder, I get cheaper ticket even than using BA short haul.

  • Joe Cheung

    I helped my in laws get enough miles to fly to two countries in Asia (with a stopover!). Two countries with very little out of pocket.

  • Tom

    I’ve helped my mom and aunt fly to Europe on Lufthansa First. Twice!

  • Leo

    I booked my wife a Cathay flight last minute from HKG to PVG with only 7500 Avios + $41 when the paid fare is in the thousands of HK$. My out-of-pocket cost is even cheaper than the low-cost Spring Airlines that has a terrible departure time. What a deal!

  • MarcMon

    I gave points to my brother so he and I could fly back to the west coast for our grandfather’s funeral at the last minute (made it affordable to be there at the last minute)

  • danskim

    Nothing special. I booked a friend’s flight with miles :)

  • Joel

    Being in a long distance relationship is very tough. Luckily I have taken advantage of my giving my airline miles and hotel points to my girlfriend so that we can meet up more often. Without them our relationship would not be a strong.

  • Jason D

    I have helped my parents earn around 500,000 miles in the last year through credit card signups. They used some of those miles for an anniversary trip to Bali.

  • Jason K

    My father traveled alot for business when I was younger. One year he was able to take me and my family on a Hawaiian vacation with his miles. Now, thanks to the tips that I learned on this website, I was able to use my miles to book a trip to Hawaii for my wife and I.

  • Joshua C

    In 2008, I was on a clinical internship in Seattle for 5 months. My girlfriend at the time, now wife, was in California. Being in grad school, I didn’t have the means to fly and see her. However, I did have some miles, but not quite enough! My now sister-in-law was gracious enough to toptable account off just enough for an awards ticket! The look on my wife’s face and her reaction, was priceless!!!

    Got a video of it too!!!
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=125949470184&l=6254794619747435435

  • Joshua C

    I meant North Carolina!

  • Jeremy

    I helped a friend get a $35 IHG PointBreak room.

  • Bulldog

    Was a bit short on miles and on dollars for a much needed Caribbean getaway. My dad offered to pitch in some money, but then I saw TPG’s post and remembered that my dad has tons of US miles. Now he gets a 100% match and I get my vacay for essentially the same price. Thanks!

  • Nicole

    My parents have been stressing over a wedding they want to attend in Taiwan. I introduced them to miles and points and helped them organize some cards to apply to in order to get the miles to book their flight. I would have given them miles, but their spending potential is wayyy higher than mine (I am a broke student haha).

  • Dan

    My friend had started a long distance relationship, and really wanted to see his girlfriend soon but was short on cash. I had a lot of BA miles to spare so I
    booked a flight for him from HNL-LAX in the name of love. They are still doing well together :)

  • Cindy

    When my stepdad passed away, we had several family members that couldn’t afford a last minute flight to attend the funeral. I used my points to book them tickets for them.

  • Eric P

    I regularly donate miles to the Make a Wish Foundation. Although I don’t have children myself, I felt like an outcast as a kid and I can relate to their struggles. It just makes me happy to help in whatever small way I can. Those kids have such a hard road.

  • Ryan

    I haven’t been able to share miles yet, but if I were to win this generous contest I would share the 26000 miles with my wife so we could take a trip to Hawaii for her 30th birthday. Just please don’t tell her I revealed her age!

  • Brennan

    I’ve not had the chance yet to help someone with miles, but I’m planning to take my brother to Ireland with miles next year! And 25k US Air miles would certainly help me with that!

  • Jackie

    We used miles to help get my brother home for the Christmas holidays!

  • NiceJoselyn

    My sister was going through a serious episode of depression that almost required her to be hospitalized. I used my Ultimate Reward points to bring her from Florida to my home in Texas and took care of her for a month. She is doing much better now!

  • Pattytravels

    I helped a friend by transferring points to British Airways for her to fly a volunteer from Cyprus dog rescue group to USA. This was a pay back for her help in giving us enough points to fly to England to meet our son who is living in Europe.

  • floressalicis

    After my boyfriend lost his job last year, I used by united miles to book a ticket to Kauai for him so that he could still attend one of my close friend’s destination wedding with me.

  • Lynn

    I am eternally grateful to those who serve in our military and will, if the opportunity arises, assist with lending miles/points knowledge and use my points to book trips …last month I used points for my nephew and his wife for a mini getaway prior to his deployment overseas. Last summer, it was a trip for a co-worker and his family for a last family summer vacation to SF before his 18 year old left for boot camp. Inspirational? Probably not in many peoples opinion but it was to the families involved!

  • SSM

    My future in-laws’ parents are providing us with 45,000 Marriott points in April for our honeymoon, which we’ll be attempting to take advantage of the Marriott travel package! We are extremely grateful for them donating not only to our wedding planning, but to our honeymoon funding as well.

  • Chris

    Used AA off-peak and free one-ways to help my friend book a one-way back from Miami, a round trip to Europe, and a one-way out to SFO, all for 40k miles!!!

  • RHarraka

    In planning a summer family trip for 2014, my in-laws didn’t have the points available to make a long-haul flight to Indonesia in premium class. Planning almost 18 months out, I gave them the guidance and links (including thepointsguy.com resources) to get started with credit card bonuses & mileage plans. They followed my advice, and once we hit 11 months out, we all had sufficient points to get 8 of us on the same long-haul flights together in premium class using miles.

  • Mark

    During the US Grand Slam promo, I sure enjoyed sharing miles and spg points to trigger activity for family and friends. what a great promo that was, hope they bring it back!

  • Siddharth

    My dad once told me on Saturday evening that we wants to go meet his friend from college in LA. We were in the bay area and we couldn’t find any cheap fares until British Airways Avios came to the rescue and got us two roundtrip tickets for 18000 Avios. Best possible use of those miles.

  • pepper4

    I gave miles to my son so he could make a trip to San Diego

  • Angela

    Earlier this year, I happened to have some time off and offered to host my sister-in-law for a week in California. She was pretty happy about a sudden surprise trip, especially as she was on the East Coast in Canada but since we only had about 3 weeks, flight prices were pretty high. I offered to make use of my miles for the domestic ticket and we booked 21+ days out (and saved on the close up ticketing fees) so it worked out nicely.

  • Tarheel traveler

    I used SW points to book my parents tickets from ATL to LAX so that they could connect to their bigger Asia trip. Great use of miles.

  • okra

    I don’t have status – I have no points to give….

  • http://www.trevorwright.co/ Trevor W.

    I regularly help my friends and family plan app-o-ramas two years out with a spreadsheet that takes into account their current cards, the best current offers, and spending habits, all while spreading hard inquiries across all three credit bureaus. This is a LOT of work, but I want my friends to be able to travel to their dream destinations the way I do. Most recently, I helped my parents piece together a strategy for miles to Moscow. Their dream trip? A Trans-Siberian train trip. I wish the Trans-Siberian had a reward program, ha!

  • DK

    My husband is my best friend.I want to share my double miles with him so we can fly together to go to Israel from our home in Florida and hug our wonderful grandchildren(their parents too) What a great anniversary gift for both of us!

  • stephan

    Got my mum on LH F via SFO to MUC to see a longtime friend who was terminal and attend her funeral. Not much of an effort on my part, but it made a difficult trip much easier for her.

  • Mister Selfish

    I used 55,000 US Airways points to fly my sister out to Kyoto and Tokyo to visit us.

  • Nat

    Using the tips I’ve learned from TPG, I helped my parents use their Amex points to book business class seats on LH to Milan. They would’ve sat on that stash forever, otherwise!

  • CarlH

    My mother-in-law in British Columbia was having some tough issues and simply needed a break elsewhere. A few weeks ago I used points to fly her to our house in the Eastern US and I booked her ticket first class on United so that it would be less stressful for her. She’s still here and has really enjoyed being away from home. After that, I’m flying her first class to see another one of her children in Alberta.

  • Åke Olbert

    I helped my boss add a free one-way back home to DCA for Xmas for him and his wife on a United award booking to Japan. He still can’t believe my explanation of stopover and open jaw rules, but super happy to save $500+ going back home for Xmas.

  • brian9778

    I gave miles to my mom to travel to Florida from Ohio so she could visit my aunt. It was a great trip and I’d love to win those miles so I can send her someplace else she wants to go! :-)

  • chris

    I’m the keeper of all the promo knowledge in the office.

  • nangress

    My cousin was flying from Europe to join us in Arizona for a family get together. She got stuck in Philly due to bad thunderstorms and wasn’t going to get to us for 2 days. I was able to redeem miles on United out of BWI and get her to us the next morning which meant she didn’t miss 2 days of vacation. The best part was I was able to redeem a low level 1st class award seat – so she arrived in style!

  • Nick

    I recently used miles to buy tickets for my partner and myself to visit her grandma in Kansas. Not glamorous but more important to her than our upcoming miles vacation to Hawaii. Thanks for all the insight.

  • Caroline

    Last year I used my Amex points to get tickets to Paris for me and my sister. It was our first international trip together but certainly not the last! I also used points for 2 nights at the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome. My sister said it was the best hotel she has ever and will probably ever stay in. Challenge accepted ;)

  • drz

    One way I used miles was to donate them to soldiers who could use them to visit their families, as well as donating to families w/sick children. On another occasion I sent my parents to visit Chicago, a city they wanted to revisit after 30 years.

  • Rob P

    All of my girlfriend’s income goes toward bills. I give her airline miles and hotel points so she can still see the world.

  • David Lloydhughes

    Our Son a Paramedic in Northern Ontario finally had enough Aeroplan miles and leave time to fly back to Thailand and visit his Grandmother but with Aeroplans YQ( scam charges) $1450+ Not Doable ! But with skills learnt from TPG i managed to find him a great route ,ideal dates and low charges. 130,000 Ap miles. $404 with biz flts on AC,TK,LH,TG,BR,OS. I now collect Dividend Miles and would use the 26,000 to travel with him

  • Ron

    I hav helped my parents by using my points to get them free rooms on vacation.

  • Krislo

    In 2007, I was in the process of adopting my beautiful son from Guatemala. I used points to fly my dad down to GUA with me so he could meet his grandson for the first time!! Best use of points ever!!

  • Casey B

    My brother goes to college out of state and during the holidays last year he didn’t have enough money to make a trip home. As an early Christmas present I gifted him some miles so he could be with us. If I had some extra miles this year I’d probably do the same!

  • Chris

    Gave my parents a trip to Glacier National Park on Amtrak in one of the bedroom accommodation using Ultimate Rewards transferred to AmTrak Guest rewards

  • Anna

    Upgraded a coworker to 1st class for their last business trip before retiring.

  • Flyer708

    I transferred a few miles to friends account I preventing the miles from expiring. Didn’t think it was a big deal, but sad glad those miles were later put to good use for travel.

  • CR

    I helped a brother to attend an MBA course he was really looking forward to by giving him the necessary miles to be there!

  • Pointsandtravel

    I have given advice about miles and points collecting via my blog… would love to share 26,000 US Airways miles via the promotion!

  • Rahul BR

    My parents were always willing to share their miles when I was a college student. When one of my grandparents’ closest friends passed away, I used my AA and BA miles to help them and my parents be with his family the day after hearing of it.

  • Jerry

    I used 75K aa points to secured a round trip ticket to Hong Kong from New York. She loved it.

  • Erin Kendall

    My mother once used some of her miles to get me a business class award ticket to Germany for the World Cup. It was a great birthday present.

  • Ali

    My parents gifted us miles to fly first class on our honeymoon. We would have never been able to afford it otherwise!

  • E Myad

    I booked a business class ticket with my pts for my mother, first time for her and she is 70.

  • Joe Carlos

    I used my points and upgraded my parents’ ticket to business class for their 50 yr anniversary trip to Paris.

  • Charlotte Burman

    To help me get to Rarotonga

  • andrew

    I’ve gotten lots of help from miles bloggers and users on flyertalk with advice about booking rewards and planning credit card churns. I am now starting to help a few friends and family in mileage quests for future dream vacations!

  • carol brown

    I helped a young couple to have their honeymoon in California by using my miles to buy them a round trip ticket from Syracuse NY to Monterey CA

  • Anton Schep

    Your post helped me greatly. Next summer we have a wedding in France coming up and we were trying to use our US Air Miles. I had 65K miles and my wife had 52K. I saw and read your posting and realized that I could share 5k miles with my wife to get both above 60K. I had until now only checked USAIR for award flights and these were always 60K each way for two tickets. Your post pointed me also to look for Alliance flights and found roundtrips for our dates on United for 60K miles in total for each of us. Calling the US Air number I got the most helpful lady I ever encountered in this context. When one of my legs with Lufthansa was not verifying availability, she realized that on our flight to France we could get a 30K frequent flyer seat on US Air, but on one leg (an small plane) there was only one seat like that and she got us a second seat. In summary you guys and the lady from US AIr helped me utilize our miles in a way I did not expect at all. Thanks.

  • cStyle

    I used points to give my wife and 8 month old a dream vacation in Hawaii we could have never afforded otherwise.

  • Ben

    My dad, a professor with a severe dislike of flying (e.g., he would rather drive than fly, even if it meant several long days in a car), needed to take an overseas flight to attend a conference. However, his university would only pay for the cheapest-of-cheap tickets. Knowing of my points/ miles hobby, approximately three months before his trip he came to me and said: “What credit cards do I need to sign up for so that I can fly business class to my conference?” I told him that by the time he got the cards, met the spend, and had the miles post, it would likely be too difficult to do to guarantee premium seats, but that he could use some of my miles to get him there and back. So, using BA Avios, I got him there in Club World and back in First (he, of course, was willing to pay the taxes/fees).

  • Zack

    My grandfather and I just booked a trip to visit Serbia, Bosnia, and Croatia to visit our my great-grandparents and ancestor’s villages. He thought the round trip ticket was going to be over $1300, making the trip hard to manage financially from the get go. Little did he know, but I opened up a Chase Sapphire Card 8 months ago, used the card for all of my purchasing, and ended up dropping our roundtrip ticket prices to $950 each.

    Needless to say, he’s excited for us to be able to spend a bit more money at the kafana haha.

  • Ford

    My mother comes from a family of five, very type-A siblings. They were competing to see who could get to all 50 states first, and last year, helping my mom with points, signups on BOA and HA cards, I got her to #50 first! I used miles for an amenity and called the hotel beforehand so they blew her and her travel partner away when they arrived. Not only did she best all her siblings, but by helping her I got to secure my place as favorite child. I’d share the miles with someone else if I won, I just wanted to share my story–for me helping others with our knowledge is a huge purpose of all the time we spend in this hobby. There is no point to wealth(in any form) without someone to share it with.

  • boxedlunch

    Recently, after a frightening medical battle, my mother expressed a desire to visit her family in Japan. The good son that I am…I couldn’t let her fly there in coach after her lengthy rehab. With a 100% US bonus offer, a credit card, and a few hours of explaining time zones to clueless US agents later, I booked her off to Japan RT in ANA business class. Unfortunately, I couldn’t convince her to fly the long way thru FRA in First :/

  • http://FemaleMenopauseMentors.com/ Bruce L Bair

    We invited all our kids and grad kids home for a week at the beach -16 people total. One son with a new job in Utah didn’t have resources for a ticket so we used miles to pay for one. We earned those primarily thru purchases on a credit card. That week was quite a memorable one. It was the first time since our kids had children of their own that we were all together in one place. We saved enough money using those miles to pay for 1/2 the food needed that week (we were quite liberal in what we bought).

  • TONE

    As an active duty officer, I have had the benefit of traveling often. Additionally there are numerous benefits afforded active duty personnel through the service members civil relief act. Only of these benefits which American Express and Chase offer is no annual fee on credit cards! Therefore I have helped my fellow service members recognize additional true benefits and travel points opportunities through cards such as the Delta Reserve and Amex Platinum….all with no annual fee!

  • ryanzalewski

    Flew my brother back from Europe on Delta last November to surprise my parents for Thanksgiving. Surprisingly, the coach awards were pricing as high level (130k), but there was a business elite low level award at 100k. So I actually saved money and got my brother over here in style!

  • Aubrey Miller

    I have an aunt and uncle living in Okinawa Japan. Last year I helped my mother get a United Explorer card so we could go visit my aunt and uncle. I used miles on a JAL flight (my first international business class flight!) and booked my mother’s ticket with Asiana on her first award travel. It was the first time since I was a kid that we had traveled together, and we both had a great time. We are now planning a family trip to Europe next summer if we can enough miles!

  • mp1007

    I know it is not much, but after a long while I was able to use my AA stickers for an upgrade and since I could only have one guest upgraded, I decided to give the two seats to my ex-wife and my daughter who were also travelling with me and sat on economy.

    I have also helped many friends who are not “miles addict” by sharing the info I read here on the blog. They are always asking me if something came up that they can benefit… LOL

  • Rae D’s Contests

    My father offered me all his points to make the trip to visit him in Australia. While I didn’t use them, I was touched and he inspired me to get planning and I made the trip finally after 15 years of putting it off. I’d been dreading the long flights in economy from the eastern side of Canada.

  • Shell

    I was able to bring all my five siblings together for a surprise 40th birthday celebration for our sister using my miles and points.

  • cotoneloc

    My father has always been very generous with his miles which has allowed me to join friends and family on trips that I otherwise would not have been able to afford.

  • Jay

    Helped a friend go on a much needed vacation.

  • Benedetta Machado

    We haven’t done this yet, but the plan next year is to use my British Airways Avios points to fly my son, daughter-in-law and grand-daughter from Eugene, OR to Scottsdale, AZ on American. They don’t know this. It’s going to be one of the gifts at Christmas/Hanukkah. They celebrate both.

    I also had added my father to our Platinum Amex so he could enjoy the lounges on a trip to and from the Philippines. He loved the extra comfort during the layovers.

  • Hilary

    My darling uses his miles & points to take me to wonderful cities in Europe.

  • Seth Dewlen

    This past valentines I was able to suprise my wife with a trip out to California while I was stationed there and she was finishing up grad school in the dfw area, needless to say she was shocked and it made for a great weekend

  • LisaJ

    My nephew is a wonderful kid who is looking at colleges to start next Fall. He raised his class rank from 19th to 3rd through continuous self study yet his parents won’t take him to visit the colleges he is interested in. I used my airline points to book his flight so I can take him to one of his top choices and am using my hotel points to pay for our stay. I started applying for airline and hotel credit cards and Chase’s Ink card in hopes of being able to take him to Europe when he graduates from high school to expand his horizons and show him the importance of history and art as he has been almost completely exposed to only math, science and English.

  • Daniel Vilela

    I live in Brazil and follow many US-based sites like The Points Guy and other brazilian based sites devoted to share information about mile accumulating strategies. Last year, I could issue tickets to my whole family (myself + wife + daughter) from Brazil to Europe (Sao Paulo – Barcelona) at peak season around Christmas and New Year through a series of exchanges that proved to be fantastic: from my bank to TAM Airline 50,000 points turned 55,000 with 10% bonus –> 55,000 TAM miles turned to 55,000 Le Club (Accor Hotels) points in another promotion (normal rate is 1 point for 2 original miles) –> 55,000 Le Club points turned 135,000 Avios with Iberia at a 2.5 Avios : 1 Le Club point exchange rate and finally, Iberia launched the opportunity to buy Avios missing to complete an emission just by the end of Sep/2012, what allowed me to issue 3 award tickets around peak season in the beggining of October (we needed at least 50,000 Avios each to redeem the tickets). The whole strategy took 3 months to be concluded, but it paid itself, as we could spend our holidays in Europe thanks to it!

  • Rick S

    I’m just a newbie, the points should be able to
    help me build enough to finally get my daughter to europe next summer before
    she finally leaves us for college in a year and a half. but through wealth of
    knowledge gained from TPG, other website alike and experiences from the
    community itself, I’m always a step closer, to reaching the goal. despite being
    a learning novice i’m glad to have pass my limited but growing knowledge to my
    sister, who’s now working on seeing the world on her own.

  • Yvonne

    My brother helped me by using his UA miles to fly me to Central America on a family vacation to visit him. Such an awesome trip!

  • Nebojsa Acimovic

    My mome had to visit us from Europe asap couple years ago and she needed like 15.000 united miles. i tranfered those from my account and we were done.

  • Dan R

    Both my wife and my parents opened up credit cards and transferred points into various programs for our honeymoon. We ended up going to Paris, Prague and Vienna, staying at top end hotels and flying business class the whole way while spending almost no money on transportation and lodging.

    Your website helped me formulate the strategy to make the trip a reality, so you also helped us with our miles and points.

  • Ben Hsieh

    I’m a beginner of using travel points since I just redeemed my first award ticket for myself in this winter. I learned from it how powerful the mileage can be. My mom has never been to U.S. before because she thinks she will need to use the restroom so often in the long-distance travel (from Asia) and she said it will be so embarrassing. By taking advantage of the US airways activity, I transferred my 50k miles to her account and she got 100k miles. Now, she is going to have her fresh experiences: a first C-class ticket and being in U.S.! The most important thing is that she never needs to worry the problem she was concerned! I love The Points Guy!!!

  • Phillip Young

    I used my miles to get my wife ( then girlfriend) to her grandfathers funeral in Chicago. She is the only one in her family on the West Coast able to attend. We were both in college and had no money to spare. Her connection took her to Boseman, MT and its one room terminal. Her flight to Chicago was nearly canceled because the incoming aircraft from Chicago couldn’t get off the ground. In fact a person waiting left the terminal 15 minutes before they announced they indeed wouldn’t have to cancel it. The next spring we got engaged and now work as expats overseas, traveling the globe with miles!

  • LaurenG

    A few years ago while I was in college I was interning for an amazing non-profit organization called Stoked. The non-profit does amazing work bringing at risk youth from NYC and LA together with mentors in action sports. I happened to have been flown out to Colorado for a job interview and on the way back was asked to be bumped onto the next flight. As a broke college student I obviously agreed and happily scooped up my delta voucher dreaming of using it for a ski trip over winter break. When I got back to NYC I thought about it more and decided to gift it to the non-profit’s executive director to travel to LA for fundraising efforts. While I would have loved to fly to Vail, I saw the value in having someone raise money to spread opportunity to kids in NYC instead. If I win this contest, I will use the miles to take my future sister in law on a bachelorette weekend. She doesn’t make a lot of money which means she obviously doesn’t get to travel.

  • BSL

    I did the Latin Pass 1,000,000 run on Memorial Day 2000 with the specific intent of taking my (then) 81 year old Grandfather to the Philippines to visit the spot he came ashore with the 24 Division in WWII and possibly to where he was wounded. By the time we left in August 2001, the trip had expanded to include (thank you KLM) us going to AMS and having stop overs in Paris (where I sprinted around Paris looking for the bus I left him on), and Amsterdam (to see where his ancestors left to come to America) and then on to Manila and Leyte (Did not risk Mindanao) . Along the way we flew KLM, stayed on points at Hiltons in Europe and the Westin in Manila. I used about 300K of the miles on that trip as my dad joined us in MNL as well, Even talked a Purser into letting him ride in an empty Business Class Seat from AMS-BKK-MNL will always be indebted to KLM for that one.

    This selfless man got to make his second trip outside of the US
    complements of the Latin Pass promotion, my dad’s willingness to fund
    the tickets for my escapade and a little bouncing around Latin and South
    America as opposed his only prior trip which was complements of Uncle
    Sam who sent him to secure the beach before MacArthur could “return” to
    the Philippines. He is 93 now, still underappreciates his efforts by
    thanking me and my dad for the trip.

    Out of the remainder, I sent
    my grandmother and my mom and her 2 sisters to NYC on USAir and put
    them up at a Doubletree so they could see shows and then “repaid” my
    dad with first class tickets to Paris for him and my mom. There were
    even miles left after all of those trips, what a great promotion…

    BSL

  • MusicMan216

    Two years ago, my father was leading a tour group from Europe across several states out West. Suddenly my grandmother took a turn for the worse, and we needed to bring him back home for funeral services. Thankfully I had miles to bring him to Cleveland from Denver without having to deal with bereavement fares that usually still really high!

  • Zaf

    Never been fortunate enough to have enough points to assist anyone, but if I won, I would love to use the points to help my mom reunite with her long-time friend in the UK – it would make her year and would be a great way to show a little appreciation for all that she has done for us!

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