TPG Readers Reveal Their Best-Ever Points and Miles Redemptions

Nov 18, 2018

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We recently asked our TPG Lounge members to share the best points and miles redemptions they’ve ever pulled off. Here’s a look at some of our favorite answers. (Some responses have been lightly edited for style and clarity).

Phenomenal Flight Redemptions

Our intrepid TPG Lounge audience never fails to impress us with the flight award tickets they’re able to come up with. In fact, their responses have us feeling more inspired than ever to book our own dream redemption trips.

“Washington-Dulles (IAD) to Johannesburg (JNB) on South African Airways in first/business class, round-trip for 110,000 miles when I was still with Star Alliance. It was my honeymoon and now my wife refuses to travel any other way. I guess I shouldn’t have spoiled her from the start!” — Lander G.

“Flew my wife and me to Paris for dinner on our first anniversary, then back to New York for dessert (wedding cake topper) in business class on the Air France A380 soon after it was put into service.” — Devon L.

“36,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points on Air Canada round-trip in economy from Detroit to Tokyo. Probably the lowest price possible.” — Justin T.

“I’ve had a few but the best was Los Angeles to Paris round-trip on Air Tahiti Nui using AA miles before the devaluation. It was 40,000 miles round-trip but since I have the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard, I was refunded 10% so used only 36,000 miles round-trip.” — Soroya G.G.

“New York-JFK to Dubai (DXB) to Amman, Jordan (AMM) in Emirates business class for 82,500 Alaska miles, with a four-day stopover in Dubai.” — Alex Z.

“70,000 Alaska miles from Los Angeles (LAX) to Sydney (SYD) in first class on Qantas’ A380.” — Vinnie T.

“First and only redemption since I hoard my points was 98,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points from Los Angeles to Sydney round-trip on Qantas.” — Ali S.

Bangkok to Sydney in Thai First for 40,000 United miles one-way. Did this three times!” — Albert G.

“70,000 AAdvantage miles for Qatar business class from New York-JFK to New Delhi (DEL) for travel in mid-December — a $6,000 value redemption!” — Amit J.

“18,000 SkyMiles per person from Tampa (TPA) to Honolulu (HNL).” — William D.Y.

One TPG Lounge reader redeemed miles for a free flight to Hawaii. (Photo by M Swiet Productions / Getty Images)
One TPG Lounge reader redeemed SkyMiles for a free flight to Hawaii. (Photo by M Swiet Productions / Getty Images)

Epic Hotel Stays

From complimentary 10-night trips to the Hawaiian Islands to two-week Christmastime adventures in Costa Rica, our TPG Lounge readers really know what they want when it comes to using points for free hotel stays.

“I’m pretty new to the game so my best redemption so far is 10 nights in Hawaii for 400,000 Hilton Honors points. Just booked five nights at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island for next year at 380,000. I’ve been saving up for 2.5 years. The free Hilton card was my first.” — Dennis H.

“Christmas and New Years at Andaz Costa Rica Resort at Peninsula Papagayo for 13 days at 15,000 points per night. Saved $23,430.” — Dan S.

“The Kimpton Seafire Resort & Spa in Grand Cayman: 280,000 points for five nights when it would’ve cost us $1,500 or more per night.” — Joey B.

“London Marriott Hotel Park Lane’s King Executive Suite: 180,000 points for five nights. It would have cost $12,000 so that’s nearly seven cents per point!” — Brandon P.

“Five nights at the Al Maha Desert Resort and Spa for 240,000 points. Next year will be the St. Regis Maldives, five nights with a 240,000-point redemption.” — Dayan Z.

“The two nights free at any Hyatt. We stayed at the Park Hyatt Sydney with a view of the Opera House. What a deal!” — Carol P.

Doesn
Doesn’t a free stay at the Park Hyatt Sydney sound great right about now? (Photo courtesy of the hotel)

The Best Trip Ever on Points and Miles

Some TPG Lounge members used points and miles to cover the whole trip, complete with free (or nearly free) flights and hotel stays in their favorite airlines products and vacation destinations.

“Surprised my now wife with a trip to Oktoberfest last year and a trip through Italy and Switzerland. I ended up proposing to her while we were over there. We flew Polaris business class for 55,000 United miles each and Lufthansa business class back for 70,000 miles each and stayed at some really nice hotels along the way — the new Ritz-Carlton in Geneva, the Excelsior Hotel Gallia in Milan, The Westin Excelsior Florence and some other SPG properties — all on points.” — Dustin L.

“[A flight from] Los Angeles to Phuket (HKT) with Asiana saver business class, and a stay in a beachfront bungalow at the Renaissance Phuket for a week with my wife. It was a 320,000 Marriott points vacation package redeemed for seven nights, plus 132,000 United miles.” — Jeff Z.

“Just booked a family spring break trip next March all on points. Two rooms for five nights each at Wailea Beach Resort by Marriott, then two rooms for two nights each at Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki, one night in Dallas for our early flight over to Honolulu (HNL), round-trip Delta tickets from Orlando (MCO) to Dallas (DFW) and two round-trip lie-flat seats on an American Airlines 777. Our only cash outlay was for two other round-trip lie-flat seats and our total savings so far is around $13,000. Should also have enough Hertz points by the time of our trip for free rental cars.” — Brian F.

“Madison (MSN) to Madrid (MAD) next January for 22,000 SkyMiles per person in economy (but with an instant ‘upgrade’ to Comfort+ at booking) and a Marriott Vacation Club sign-up points bonus redemption for five nights at the Hotel Santo Mauro, Autograph Collection. Total trip cost thus far is $86 in fees.” — Josh A.

“Round-the-world trip in January 2017. New York-JFK to Frankfurt (FRA) to Singapore (SIN) in Singapore Suites for 89,000 miles. Singapore to Male (MLE) via Tiger Air, paid with cash. Stayed in Park Hyatt Maldives for three nights for 75,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points. Male to Columbo (CMB) to Singapore via SriLankan Airlines for 15,000 Avios, then back to Singapore to fly to Tokyo-Narita (NRT) via ANA first class for 40,000 United miles. Tokyo-Narita to New York-JFK via JAL first class for 80,000 AAdvantage miles. All done in 11 days.” — Will W.

“New York-JFK to Brussels (BRU) on Brussels Air in business for 36,500 miles round-trip per person booked through Etihad Guest with Amex Membership Rewards points. Four free nights at the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome with certificates [when rates were] $1,200 a night. New York-JFK to Bangkok (BKK) on Cathay Pacific in first class for 120,000 miles round-trip per person, booked through American Airlines. Two Hyatt free night certificates at Park Hyatt Hong Kong [when rates were] $600 a night. Looking for the next one right now!” — Staci B.

Featured photo by Roman Slavik / Getty Images.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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.