I Want To Travel! Where Do I Start?

The Cost of Travel

I have found that traveling, and getting the chance to explore new cultures is an important part of life. These experiences can be hard to come by, however, due to the high cost of travel these days. Airline tickets and hotels can run for a premium especially if you are traveling during peak times of the year. To avoid these high costs, it is important to learn a frugal way to fly and find lodging.

Over the past few years I have learned many ways to save money while taking multiple vacations a year. The most prevalent of these ways is by utilizing credit card rewards. This portion of The Oasis will predominantly focus on booking award travel. For low cost cash fares, I typically rely on Scott's Cheap Flights. Signing up for Scott's service will put you on a list to receive mistake fares and abnormally cheap tickets. For example, I was able to fly to Stockholm, Sweden using a combination of Scott's deals and my Ultimate Rewards points with Chase. Ultimately, I ended up spending 17,000 UR for a round trip flight which as an amazing deal.

Award Charts

Outside of these types of redemptions, the most common is using award bookings, and in that situation the below chart will be your best friend.

Award Chart

This is an award chart. Many airlines use these charts to show the prices in points for all award flights. Knowing the different charts for various airlines can help you find some sweet spot redemptions like the 25k UR roundtrip to Hawaii from the US that I'll talk about in another post.

In addition to Award Charts, some airlines like Southwest have dynamic pricing which means that the points value is tied to the cash value. I used my Companion Pass with Southwest to go to Portland so if you are interested in details about that, check out my Portland Trip Report.

If you like the sound of cheap travel around the world, stay tuned for more posts to learn about good redemptions for hotels and flights!


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