Membership Rewards Pay With Points Promotion: My Readers Have Spoken and I'll Be Going To...
Urubamba, Peru... and Vieques, Puerto Rico!
Huh? Okay, hear me out. After I posted the Peru option, I got a ton of emails and comments about a long weekend not being enough time and the more research I did, I had to agree. Plus, the point of using my Pay With Points was to gain elite status and Delta does not do Medallion upgrades on flights to Lima, so I'd have to rough it in coach and connect via Atlanta. No thanks.
Instead, I'll be using the 150,000 Amex points to plan a true long weekend getaway at the W Vieques Resort and Spa (airfare is ~$270 nonstop on Delta from JFK and as a Diamond Medallion it's a slam-dunk upgrade). I also have a couple free resort nights, which I'll combine with a paid night (to help me with my Starwood status), which will leave me with a lot of flexibility to use the Pay With Points on a bunch of other things, like a rental car and excursions. More on that in my planning post. Timeline: mid/late November after hurricane season.
As for Peru, I will be using 80,000 British Airways miles and planning a ridiculous multi-stopover tour of South America. I've booked these awards for others, but never myself and since I always talk about them, I'll bring you through my entire planning process so you can all replicate since I know many of you have racked up tons of British Airways miles.
Right now my plan is to do a night in Lima, a night in Cusco, 4 nights in Urubama, 2 nights in Santiago, Chile and 3 nights on Easter Island. Give or take, we will figure the whole trip out soon. Timeline: late September/early October.
Now for the fun part, the three random winners out of over 700 comments are:
Michael K. - $100 Amex gift certificate
Blake - VIP membership
Katie - VIP membership
I don't want to post your last names or emails (obviously) and I recognize there are probably multiple Michael Ks and Katies out there, so TPG Membership Liaison Danielle will be in touch with you shortly to get your information for the prizes.
Thanks to everyone for playing along. I am very much looking forward to my two upcoming trips and you can expect not only detailed trip reports with pictures, but also information on how I planned each from scratch.