Frequent flyer points- how to get free nights in hotels

How is it possible that the more you spend the more you get? Traveling can be expensive, but there are ways to travel cheaper. Many airlines offer memberships that include some benefits, so if you pay for flight anyway, why not take advantage of every possibility to get something in return? I have been very sceptical about it, there’s nothing ever for free, right? Well, and probably isn’t in this case neither, but at least you can get some benefits for paying for flights…and even shopping.

I am a member of Flying Blue group, to which Air France, amongst others, belongs. I never paid much attention to it though, since I mainly travelled around Europe where there are many budget airlines, which don’t belong to any group, but are so cheap to fly with. Then I signed up for Iberia membership card. Iberia belongs to One World group and whenever I fly with any of the members, I get points (Avios). How useful it can be I only realized while traveling in South America. Whenever you go in this continent,  you are very likely to travel with LAN (they seem to monopolize most of the airports), also a member of One World. Recently I signed up for Life Miles, which you collect while traveling with any airline that belongs to Star Alliance group.

If you to their websites you can see all the benefits they offer. To me it looks a bit like a pile of useless stuff and you can get lost a bit. I had tried in the past to book flights with using points and they most of the time were as expensive or even more expensive than paying with cash alone as they combine points and cash. So I wouldn’t recommend buying flights with points unless you have enough to pay the whole flight. I have found though that the points can be exchanged for other things than flights and I found most useful to pay in full with points for:

  • hotels
  • cinema tickets

But you can also exchange the point for:

  • meals
  • flights
  • shopping

If you have a membership card, you can find all the hotels via your account. In some destinations it is possible to choose from many hotels, but at times there’s none. There is also a list of all member airlines and other partners such as shop brands, where you can collect your points while shopping or pay with them.

See also: 12 Tips for Solo Female Travelers

Rio de Janeiro

How much are the points worth?

For example a flight from Madrid to Santiago de Chile gives you  6661 Avios (points from Iberia Airlines); flight from Santiago to Buenos Aires 213 Avios.

Flight with Copa Airlines (Star Alliance) from Cartagena de Indias to Panama City gave me 330 Life Miles.

Now let’s see what you can get for points.

I have exchanged 11100 Avios for one night in Radisson Royal in Cali in Colombia, hotel of a high standard with breakfast, a swimming pool and spa included.

For 12000 Avios three nights in Buenos Aires in Cyan Hotel with a beautiful view of the historical Recoleta. I couldn’t ask for a better location. Those 4 nights being paid by Avios only saved me around $ 400. Not bad, ha?

from the air

That’s not all. Sometimes you can use your points to pay for restaurants or for shopping. For example, you can use your Life Miles to pay in Mango, Ripley, Esprit, Carolina Herrera, Coach..to name a few. This however, does not apply in every shop as only some countries participate. I would advise to ask beforehand.

So, it would be worth checking up: Star Alliance, One World, Flying Blue. And remember to ask for points buy isotretinoin canada every time you check in your flight as later it gets a bit complicated. Check the airlines that belong to those groups as you get points while traveling with any member or even shopping in some shops.

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Jak jest to mo?liwym, ?e gdy wi?cej si? wydaje pieni?dzy, wi?cej mo?na zaoszcz?dzi?? Podró?owanie mo?e by? kosztowne, ale s? sposoby na to, aby móc podró?owa? troch? taniej. Wiele linii lotniczych oferuje cz?onkostwo, wi?c je?li p?acicie za loty pomimo wszystko, dlaczego by nie skorzysta? z ka?dej mo?liwo?ci, aby troch? si? zwróci?o? Ja by?am do?? sceptycznie nastawiona do tego, nic nie jest przecie? za darmo, nie? Có?, mo?liwe, ?e nie jest i w tym wypadku, ale przynajmniej mo?na skorzysta? z przywilejów p?acenia za loty…a nawet zakupów.

Jestem cz?onkiem grupy Flying Blue, do której nale?y, mi?dzy innymi, Air France. Nigdy jednak nie zwraca?am wi?kszej uwagi na to jako ?e g?ównie podró?owa?am po Europie, gdzie operuje wiele tanich linii lotniczych, a nie nale?? one do ?adnej z grup. Nast?pnie poprosi?am o kart? cz?onkowsk? Iberii. Iberia nale?y do grupy One World i kiedykolwiek korzystam z us?ug lotniczych jakiegokolwiek cz?onka tej grupy, otrzymuj? punkty (Avios). Jak przydatne to mo?e by? okaza?o si? dopiero podczas moich podró?y po Ameryce Po?udniowej. Je?li podró?ujesz po tym kontynencie ?rodkami powietrznymi, bardzo prawdopodobne jest, ?e b?dziesz podró?owa? z LAN (wydawa?oby si?, ?e zmonopolizowali wszystkie lotniska), te? cz?onkiem One World. Niedawno do??czy?am do grupy Star Alliance i zbieram Life Miles za ka?dym razem gdy podró?uj? liniami nale??cymi do tej grupy.

Na stronach internetowych tych grup mo?ecie zobaczy? list? wszystkich korzy?ci jakie oferuj? z cz?onkostwa. Dla mnie jednak wygl?da to ja mnóstwo bezu?ytecznych rzeczy i mo?na si? pogubi?. W przesz?o?ci próbowa?am kupi? bilety lotnicze p?ac?c punktami, jednak gdy si? nie ma wystarczaj?cej ilo?ci punktów, p?aci si? cz??ciowo gotówk? i cz??ciowo punktami i wychodzi to du?o dro?ej. Nie doradza?abym wi?c p?acenia za loty punktami, je?li nie macie ich wystarczaj?co aby pokry? ca?y koszt. Punkty jednak mog? zosta? wymienione na inne rzeczy i wed?ug mnie najkorzystniej jest p?aci? punktami za:

  • hotele
  • bilety do kina

Ale mo?ecie równie? wymie? punkty:

  • w restauracjach
  • za zakupy
  • za bilety lotnicze

Je?li macie kart? cz?onkowsk?, list? dost?pnych hoteli mo?ecie zobaczy? loguj?c si? na swoje konto. W niektórych miejscach mo?na wybra? spo?ród wielu hoteli, jednak czasem jest niemo?liwym p?acenie punktami w ?adnym. Znajduje si? tam równie? lista innych linii cz?onkowskich i partnerów jak marki sklepów, gdzie mo?ecie zbiera? punkty lub nimi p?aci? podczas zakupów.

Ile s? te punkty warte?

Na przyk?ad, lot z Madrytu do Santiago de Chile daje wam 6661 Avios (punkty z Iberii); lot z Santiago do Buenos Aires to 213 Avios.

Lot z Copa Airlines (Star Alliance) z Cartagena de Indias do Panamy da? mi 330 Life Miles.

A teraz zobaczmy co mo?na dosta? za te punkty.

Wymieni?am 11100 Avios za jedna noc w Radisson Royal w Cali w Kolumbii, hotelu o wysokim standardzie ze ?niadaniem, basenem i spa w cenie noclegu.

Za 12000 Avios- 3 noce w Buenos Aires z pi?knym widokiem na zabytkow? Recolet?. Nie mog?abym prosi? o lepsz? lokalizacj?. Te 4 noce zap?acone wy??cznie punktami Avios zaoszcz?dzi?y mi oko?o $400. Nie?le, nie?

To nie wszystko. Czasami mo?ecie u?y? zdobyte punkty do p?acenia w restauracjach lub za zakupy. Na przyk?ad mo?ecie u?y? Life Miles do p?acenia w sklepach Mango, Ripley, Esprit, Carolina Herrera, Coach…spo?ród wielu. To jednak nie jest mo?liwe w ka?dym sklepie, wi?c radzi?abym sprawdzi? wcze?niej, gdy? nie wszystkie kraje bior? w tym udzia?.

Tak wi?c warto by by?o sprawdzi?: Star Alliance, One World, Flying Blue. I pami?tajcie, aby upomnie? si? o punkty za ka?dym razem przy odprawie lotniczej jako ?e potem robi si? to do?? skomplikowane. Sprawd?cie jakie linie lotnicze nale?? do danej grupy i zbierajcie punkty od ka?dego partnera a nawet w niektórych sklepach.

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