2015: A Year In Review, Earning and Burning Over 1 Million Miles
Category : Uncategorized
The last of the great airline mergers between the legacy airlines occurred and, to American and US Airways’ credit, it went off smoothly. We knew that it was only a matter of time before American would devalue their award chart—and they did, but it was not as severe as we thought it would be.
As major banks upped the competitiveness and wallet-worthiness of their cards (hello Citi Premier and Prestige and American Express Gold Card), other banks began to clamp down on churners—Bank of America and Chase. We saw an increase of really solid sign-ups including the semi-public 100,000 AMEX Platinum offers and 50,000 Citi ThankYou Points on both the Prestige and Premier cards.
I’ve been involved in this hobby since July 2013, after graduating college. The first credit card I opened was the Chase Slate—not a points-earning card, but a no-fee card I knew I can keep forever. Six months later I applied for the British Airways and Chase Freedom cards. Approved for both, I took another six months before I applied for my next cards. And then six months later, another few cards.
In 2014 I applied for, and was approved for 9 credit cards.
Fast forward to 2015: I more than doubled that with 22 applications and 20 approvals. It also helps to have a significant other who can open up cards as well. She applied for, and was approved for 9 out of 10. In January I made a resolution to crank up the number of applications from 2014. There was some risk involved, a lot of creative thinking on how to reach the required spends, but in the end, the numbers say everything.
So without further ado…
A year in numbers:
|AAdvantage Miles||176,000||207,500||Airline||Redemptions made in 2015 but earned 2014|
|United Mileage Plus||115,000||30,000||Airline|
|Southwest RR||110,000||110,000||Airline||Companion pass|
|British Airways||48,000||Airline||Redemptions made in 2015 but earned 2014|
|Citi ThankYou Points||106,000||104,000||Transferable||Redemptions made in 2015 but earned 2014|
|Chase Ultimate Rewards||60,000||Transferable||To be redeemed|
|Hilton HHonors||49,000||Hotel||To be redeemed|
|Marriot Rewards||166,000||Hotel||To be earned|
|Hyatt Gold Passport||12,000||Hotel|
|Number of flights||36|
*Two Hyatt and two Hilton nights were also earned via credit card sign ups
So looking at the numbers, I still have a decent stash of points/miles—enough for any last minute trip to Chicago or wherever, that we would need to take. (Notice the lack of Ultimate Rewards earned this year—a post for another time.)
The most exciting thing for me to see that the approximate distance flown is enough to go around the world at least once!
For 2016, I have our travels booked until September which clocks in at 35,000 miles.
With some well-timed applications and the proper card(s) for spending, you too can go to these places, and more. Future posts will include best uses of miles, how to earn and where to spend, trip reports and more.
Thanks for your support and I can’t wait to see what next year brings!
Tomorrow on Mining for Miles—“20 Cards?! But what about your credit score?!”