Free Frequent Flyer Miles - Other Programs I Like
Sorry, I can't figure out how to categorize these without making my index to the left too large. But some of the easiest ways to accumulate miles are on this page. For example, all of your credit cards should be registered with an iDine® program, and some of the surveys are very easy ways to earn free miles. And be sure to read the very last entry on this page.
Register up to five credit cards with one of the airlines' iDine® programs listed below. When you charge a meal to one of those cards at any of the 9,500 (and growing) restaurants in the U.S. and Canada, you receive up to 5 miles per dollar spent. You are already paying for this program through the price of the meal when you dine at any iDine® restaurant. So you should register the card you use to pay for meals with one of the programs below in order to get your money's worth from the restaurant.
SmarterTravel has a pretty good article on the iDine® program.
There is a forum on FlyerTalk dedicated to iDine®.
There are Android apps for finding iDine restaurants while you are traveling.
Some restaurants within chains of restaurants offer iDine® miles, while others within that same chain do not. Denny's and Lyons come to mind. This is possible because many chain restaurants are independently owned franchises and can offer whatever bonuses they like. Many of these restaurants issue gift certificates valid for all restaurants in the chain, even those which do not offer iDine® miles. Purchase of gift certificates on your registered credit card qualify for the iDine® miles. So do the obvious.
A special example of the above is a few TGI Fridays in New York City. Some are iDine® restaurants, but do not offer the usual Gold Points. This thread on FlyerTalk discusses how to get both.
Special note: iDine® sends out special offers for bonus miles, but only to those registered for a participating airline's program. Since I am not registered for all of the programs I list, I do not receive all of the offers. So I depend on you to tell me about them. Please send me a copy and paste of any iDine® offers you receive that I have not already listed (or just forward it with a note - no attachments, please, for security reasons).
Many airline iDine® programs are offering special bonuses. A reader who posts as Cornroaster on FlyerTalk posted an excellent summary on how to "game" these bonuses. I copy the post below with a slight amount of editing to make it relevant to current offers. It might be worthwhile to follow the thread to see if others add ideas.
Now we get to the ways to "game" iDine®.
Although many restaurants restrict you to one iDine® visit a month, if you register different credit cards with different airlines iDine® programs, you can use each credit card once in the same month at such restaurants and still get the miles for each visit. This has been verified several times by folks posting on the various forums discussing frequent flyer miles. No, iDine® won't let you register the same credit card with more than one airline. You can't double dip.
Be sure to create an online profile for each of your iDine® accounts. I and others have noticed that this allows you unlimited iDine® visits to restaurants that otherwise restrict you to one visit per month.
Be sure to enter the information for Your Birthday, Add Birthday, and Your Anniversary in your account information. After logging into your account, go to the MY ACCOUNT CENTER > My Preferences section. The American and United Airlines programs currently offer special birthday month bonuses.
Owners of restaurants interested in participating in the iDine® programs should click here.
The following programs are operated by Rewards Network (formerly iDine®)
Delta Airlines Skymiles Dining
American Airlines AAdvantage Dining
United Airlines Mileage Plus Dining by Rewards Network
Alaska Airlines MileagePlan Dining & Hotels by Rewards Network.
IHG® Rewards Club Dining (Priority Club)
Hilton HHonors Dining
The following programs are not operated by Rewards Network (formerly iDine®).
Mogl, Hawaiian Airlines® dining
The e-rewards program offers mega credit for doing surveys. Credit earned can be used to buy miles or points from American, United, Alaska, Frontier, Southwest, JetBlue, Virgin America, Virgin Atlantic, Air France/KLM, Aeromexico, Iberia, Emirates, or Ethiad Airlines, and points for Hilton HHonors, IHG (Priority Club), Wyndham, Carlson, LaQuinta, or Choice Hotels, or gift cards from various merchants.
Usually the opportunity is offered to earn more pseudo-cash after you click on the email you receive. Always look near the bottom of the page you get and click on any "earn more" link you see.
Caution: Joining through an airline invitation will probably cause your redemption opportunities to be restricted to that airline. It is not clear to me if a similar restriction is place on enrollments via hotel invitation. But such an enrollment may increase redemption opportunity to once per quarter, rather than once per year. Read this Flyertalk discussion for the latest on this.
These pages describe how you can get an invitation:
E-rewards now has a European wesbite.
Expiration e-Rewards Currency:
If Member's account has been inactive for twelve (12) months immediately preceding the end of the Membership Year, one-hundred percent (100%) of any unused e-Rewards Currency remaining in the a Member's account that was earned during the just-ended Membership Year will expire, and will be removed from the Member's account.
|MyPoints||MyPoints frequently offers points for surveys. You may read about the MyPoints program on my Click for Miles, Money, and Good Causes page in the Click for Miles section.
|Opinions Take Flight and Hawaiian Airlines
Earn 350 Hawaiian Airlines Miles by joining Opinions Take Flight and completing your first survey. You will then be awarded HawaiianMiles for each additional survey you complete.
|Opinion Check-In and IHG Rewards Club
Opinion Check-In offers IHG Rewards Club for surveys. As of September 26, 2016, there is a 1,000 points bonus for joining and completing your first survey.
|OpinionMilesClub and United Airlines
|OpinionMilesClub offers United Airlines miles for surveys.
|Valued Opinions and Southwest Airlines
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Members can earn points by completing surveys through Valued Opinions.
As a member of Valued Opinions, you will be sent market research surveys tailored to your interests. For every survey you complete, you will earn $0.50 and $5.00. The more surveys you take, the more rewards you will collect. In next to no time, you could have accummulated enough rewards to exchange for Rapid Rewards® Points.
|PointsForSurveys and JetBlue
|PointsForSurveys offers JetBlue points for surveys.
|PointsForSurveys and Spirit Airlines
Miles for Thoughts offers Spirit Airlines points for surveys.
|Swagbucks||Swagbucks now offers points "Bucks" for doing surveys and answereing daily polls, among many other thins. You may read about the program on my Click for Miles, Money, and Good Causes page in the Click for Money section.
AskingCanadians offers 250 Air Canada Aeroplan points to Canadians for signing up for its program, plus earn miles in exchange for your opinions on products and services sold in Canada.
See the description of the Amtrak program in the Points for Miles section below.
|SNCF (French railway) and American, United, and Continental Airlines||
SNCF is the high speed train in France(TGV). American, United, and Continental Airlines code share many of its trains out of Paris/Charles de Gaulle International Airport. Look on my Registrations and Other Bonuses page under each of these two airlines to find what is offered for riding these trains. Miles are always offered, and sometimes there are bonus offers. Last I looked, United was offering free train travel.
|Deutsche Bahn (German Railway) and American Airlines||
Deutsche Bahn is the German Railway system. American Airlines code shares many of its trains to and from Frankfurt and various locations in Germany. Look on my Registrations and Other Bonuses page under this airline to find what is offered for riding these trains.
|Thalys (French - Belgium Railway) and American Airlines||
American Airlines code shares with Thalys Rail service between Paris, Charles de Gaulle Airport and Brussels, Belgium Midi Rail Station. Look on my Registrations and Other Bonuses page under this airline to find what is offered for riding these trains.
Business ProgramsBusinesses can earn extra miles through the travel of their employees and by holding business meetings at certain hotels. They can earn extra business and stay competitive by offering miles to customers and by accepting credit cards of those customers. There are also other pecial miles earning opportunites specific to businesses.
|Airline and Hotel Programs for Small Businesses Travel||
Many airlines and hotels have programs designed for small businesses travel. (Large business can make their own negotiated deals.) These programs typically provide points for the business buying the ticket which are convertible to airline tickets and/or other travel goodies, while still allowing employees to earn miles for themselves while traveling at company cost. The links to programs I know about so far are listed below. Please let me know of any other similar programs you find.
American Airlines offers serious group discounts for people traveling to your business meeting from different locations:
Low-Rate Zone FaresNote that these fares are discounted off of full fares, so they won't look so good against the lowest fare available on American's website. Be sure to compare.
I believe most airlines have similar programs. If you find one, please tell me about it. Thanks. I no one tells me about one, I will assume no one read and cared about this section, anyway.
Starwood Hotels' Preferred Planner program offers points for holding business meetings on their properties. Click on the Terms and Conditions link to get the details.
Hyatt Hotel's Meeting Dividends program offers points for holding business meetings on their properties. Click on the Terms and Conditions link to get the details.
Marriott Hotels Rewarding Events offer up to 15,000 miles on a large selection of airlines or up to 50,000 points for each group, event or meeting, plus 10 Elite nights toward your Silver, Gold or Platinum Elite status for each qualified group or event.
|Business can buy miles for incentives||
Businesses and organizations can buy miles from many airlines, and then use those miles for customer promotions, employee recognition, sales programs, fund raising, or whatever. This, of course, is the source of most of the offers on this web site. I do not plan to follow all of the offers for such programs, since most of them are privately negotiated. But if I find an offer of interest, I will list it here. Please let me know of any you find.
|Accept Our Miles Producing Credit Cards||
To help you, the business owner, accept our miles producing credit cards, I list some companies that help you do this. I know nothing about any of them, trusting that you, as a business person, can properly investigate and compare companies that offer this service to you. But these are a start. They will at least give you an idea of the costs such services.
|Services for Webmasters||
|Other Business Programs||
Regus offers American Airline miles for its services, including day office rental, meeting room rental, video conferencing, professional handling of your business calls and messages, professional administrative support, from packing and shipping to document printing and binding.
American Express OPEN for small businesses offers up to 30,000 Membership Rewards points for signing up and using its wire service for foreign exchange currency.
TR Cutler, Inc., a public relations firm for the manufacturing sector, offers 25,000 American Airlines miles at the conclusion of each 90 day Manufacturing Media PR Blitz program.
FedEx offers 1 Hawaiian Airlines mile/$1 spent plus some discounts for shipping with them.
FedEx offers: 500 miles Delta Airlines miles for your first and fourth shipments and 1 mile/$1 spent on eligible FedEx shipments.
As a Delta SkyMiles member, you can earn 100 miles for each FedEx Express® shipment using FedEx One Rate, up to 10,000 miles. FedEx One Rate offers simple, flat rate shipping with the reliability of FedEx. It lets you know up-front exactly how much youll pay no weighing or measuring required.
Miles for Conference Calls: Forget about flying to an expensive business meeting. Just do a conference call, and use your miles for an international vacation instead. I list miles opportunities for conference calls in my Telephone section.
Trusted Translations offers American Airlines miles for its services. You must sign up for its premier program and buy translation services from them. To earn the first time 1,000 bonus miles, the minimum value of the translations must be $500. Premier clients will earn 1 mile/5 words translated. Read the details of the offer.
Hotel and Other Points Programs
The programs below are great for earning free nights at major hotel chains. I usually use them for the first and last nights of travel, to recover from jet lag on that first day, and to be near my departure airport for departure. But for most of my travel, I much prefer smaller, family owned hotels and
B&Bs. Many of the latter are simply home stays in local homes with a few rooms to rent to make a bit of money. The interactions with the local people are priceless and are a major reason I travel.
Booking.com is my main resource for finding these accommodations. It does not have a points program, but its listings are hugely extensive world wide. They include home stays, farm stays (fun!), guest houses, hostels (many with private rooms - fun, especially for the young), resorts, apartments, inns, campgrounds, luxury tents, villas, country houses, lodges, boats (yes, you can stay on a boat), condo hotels, chalets, and even motels. Booking.com books directly with the property booked. The booking is immediate - the property owners know who you are immediately after you book, so you can contact them directly to confirm that your booking was actually made. To my knowledge this is the only third party booking company that does this. With others, the property owner may not know who your are until a day or two before your arrival.
Accessing booking.com by clicking on the banner to the left helps me at no cost to you. Thanks.
Accorhotels is my favorite hotel chain for the cheapest lodging, mainly because of its Motel 6 and Ibis chains. Since I don't travel for the purpose of spending time in my room, all I need is a clean bed and bathroom. So a low price for same is very attractive to me.
The A|Club loyalty program offers points for stays. Points vary with the chain. Alas, they are not available for Motel 6. Points are convertible to miles at various ratios on Delta and Singapore Airlines, U.S. and British Airways, Air France, Lufthansa, and Quntas. Partner offers are promised soon.
Accor offers miles for stays at some of the Motel 6, Sofitel, Pulman, Novotel, Mercure, Suitehotel, Adagio, Ibis, All Seasons, Etap, Forumle 1, Studio 6, and Accor Thalassa properties worldwide. Best I can tell, all you have to do is show your frequent flyer card number at check-in, but ask to be sure. Eligible rates and countries vary with the airline program. Generally 150 - 500 miles per stay are offered.
Thayls and SNCF passengers are offered discounts on some stays at some Accor hotels.
Alas, I have been unable to find miles offers for Accor's Motel 6 chain. However, clicking through the banner to the left gets all of them in your area of interest listed.
|IHG Rewards Club -InterContinental Hotels Group||
IHG Rewards Club (formerly Priority Club is a program from InterContinental Hotels Group (Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Candlewood Suites, and StayBridge Suites), which allows accumulation of points convertible to miles large number of airlines. Points also can be used to acquire free stays. You can also use points for free airline tickets, which seems like a better deal than converting to miles if you plan to acquire lots of points (for staying at the hotel group's properties, for example). Points to do not expire, so I plan to keep mine with Priority Club until I need them, since the survival of InterContinental Hotels Group seems more likely than that of most airlines.
I have found Priority Club points to be expecially valuable for booking rooms in Europe.
Priority Club's PointBreaks page lists opportunities to book award nights for only 5,000 points per night. Usually these are incredible deals, especially in places where the dollar is weak, like Europe. Always check this page before booking an award night.
Points can be earned by staying at InterContinental Hotels Group properties at the rate of 10 points/US$1 (or local currency equivalent) spent on eligible charges, acquiring and using its credit card (see the nice bonus offer on the Free Cards page of my Credit Card section), and via bonus offers, many of which are listed on my Registrations and Other Bonuses page. For stays, there is the option of earning miles instead of points. The number of miles varies by airline and hotel property.
|Best Western Gold Crown Club||
Gold Crown Club is the loyalty points program of the Best Western Hotel Chain. You earn 10 points per $1 spent at their properties. 5,000 points get you 1,000 miles on a choice of several airlines, or for free stays or other goodies. To avoid expiration of points, stay at a Best Western property at least once in any 12 month period.
Gold Crown members have the option of earning 250 miles per stay instead of points. Since 10 points are worth 2 miles, and $1 spent gets you 10 points, mileagewise your stay would have to cost over $125 to justify choosing points over miles.
Gold Crown Club lists other opportunities to earn points, as well as special discounts on rooms, on its Special Offers page.
|Choice Privileges and Ea$yChoice||
Choice Hotels has two loyalty programs.
The Starwood Hotels Starpoints programs offers points staying at its hotels, using its excellent credit card (one of my favorites - see the Free Cards page of my Credit Card section), and doing other things, many of which are listed on my Registrations and Other Bonuses page. Starpoints can be converted to airline miles rate of 1 Starpoint to 1 airline mile on most major airline carriers (except United Airlines, which gets a terrible 1 mile for 2 points ratio). Plus, when you transfer 20,000 Starpoints earned at Starwood properties or through its partners (such as the excellent Starwood American Express credit card), you are offered an additional 5,000 airline miles. The minimum number of Starpoints for transfer to miles is 2,500, 1,500, or none, depending on how many times you have stayed at one of their hotels. Starpoints can also be used to obtain other goodies, such as free stays at Starwood properties. Here is Starwood's description of the Starpoints program.
Loyalty Traveler describes how using the Starwood Preferred Guest Airline Direct Deposit program may be better for you than using Starpoints-to-miles transfers.
Note that it is possible that your Starpoints will expire. Be sure to use them or convert them to miles before this happens. From the terms and conditions of the program:
4.2 Forfeiting Starpoints. Except for SVO Owners to whom the obligations in Section 11 apply, Starpoints earned or otherwise obtained by an SPG Member will forfeit without notice if the SPG Member becomes Inactive, even if the SPG Member has achieved SPG Lifetime Gold or SPG Lifetime Platinum Status. An SPG Member is considered "Inactive" if during a 12-month period: (a) the SPG Member has not had a Stay at an SPG Participating Hotel; (b) the SPG Member has not earned or redeemed any Starpoints; or (c) the SPG Member’s account has been cancelled.
Marriott Rewards is a program from Marriott Hotels which allows accumulation of points convertible to miles of many airlines, at various conversion ratios, depending on how many points you are converting. The miles award chart is listed here. Marriott points also can be used to acquire free stays and other goodies. (Look at the menu to the left.)
You must enroll in the program before you can acquire points. Look on my Registrations and Other Bonus page to see if there is an enrollment bonus.
Points can be earned by staying at Marriott Hotels, acquiring and using its credit card (see the nice bonus offer on the Free Cards page of my Credit Card section), and via bonus offers, many of which are listed on my Registrations and Other Bonuses page.
An account may be closed at Marriott's discretion if no points or miles are accrued during a 24-month period. All points in the account will be forfeited at that time.
|Hilton HHonors Program||
Special note: If you have not yet signed up for the Hilton HHonors program and belive that you will be staying at an Hilton property, be sure to look at the Hilton listings on my Registrations and Other Bonuses - Miles and Points Programs page to see if there is a bonus offer for registering via referral.
The free Hilton HHonors program can be most useful to seekers of miles, even if you do not ever intend to stay at a Hilton property. There are several reasons for this:
First, if miles in an airline frequent flyer mile program are about to expire, you may transfer them to the Hilton program. Conversion rate is one mile gets you one Hilton HHonors point. Then you can use your Hilton points to buy miles on many airlines, or to buy Amtrak points which are convertible to miles on Continental (max 25,000 per year). You can read about the Amtrak program below. Conversion rate is 10,000 Hilton HHonors points gets you 1,500 or 1,000 or 850 miles (depending on the airline) or 1,500 Amtrak points. Yes, you lose a bunch of miles in the exchange, but this is better than losing all of them through expiration.
Second, there are lots of ways to earn Hilton HHonors points by staying at its hotels, and by other means that can be quite lucrative. For example, you can get an easy minimum of 20,000 points by applying for both of the free, no annual fee Hilton credit cards, described in the Credit Card section of this web site. That's at least 3,000 or 2,000 miles . I regularly obtain points from my use of the e-rewards program I describe on my Miles for Clicking page of this web site. MyPoints is described on my Click for Miles, Money, and Good Causes page of this web site. Check out this extensive list of ways to earn more Hilton HHonors points other than by staying in Hilton Hotels.
I list this program on this web site because the points convert to miles, and they are held by a business that seems to be more financially stable that most of the airlines. But those who actually stay at Hilton properties say the points are more value when used to buy stays in Hilton's high priced rooms. Some of the Hilton resorts seem to be especially favored.
I list special Hilton HHonors point offers on my Registrations and Other Bonuses - Miles and Points Programs page.
|Carlson Hotels Goldpoints||
Carlson Hotels includes Radisson Blu, Radisson®, Park Plaza®, Park Inn by Radisson, and Country Inns & Suites By Carlson.
Be sure to check my Registration and Other Bonuses page for bonuses for this program.
|La Quinta Returns program||If you often stay in La Quinta properties, its
Returns program will be of use to you. Earn 10 points/$1 spent at their Inns. Earn more if you achieve certain levels by staying lots of times within a year. 6,000 points convert to 1,000 miles on Aeromexico, Alaska, American, or Delta. 6,000 points convert to 1,200 Southwest Airlines points.
You may instead receive 250 miles on the above airlines, or 600 Southwest Airlines points per stay. You must choose points or miles when you check in, so do the math.
Read the terms and conditions. Note that
|Hyatt Gold Passport||
Join the Hyatt Gold Passport program and choose to earn either points or miles for stays at its properties.
You may combine your Gold Passport points with any Gold Passport member to redeem an award. Apparently there is no charge or loss of points for doing this.
A member's Hyatt Gold Passport membership may be discontinued at Hyatt Gold Passport's discretion if a member does not record Hyatt Gold Passport points or Airline miles activity during any consecutive 12-month period. All Hyatt Gold Passport points in the account will be forfeited at that time.
Be sure to read about special offers for this program in the Hotel and Other Points Programs section of my Registration and Other Bonuses page.
Wyndham Hotels include Super8, DaysInn, Howard Johnson, Ramada, Knights Inn, Microtel, Baymont, Wingate, Hawthorn, TRYP, Dream, and various Wyndham brands. Its Wyndham Rewards program offers points (10 points/$1) or airline miles (at various rates) for stays at member hotels. Points are convertible to free stays or miles of a choice of many airlines at various rates of conversion.
Wyndham offers a credit card that earns points up front and for purchases. You may read about this in my Credit Cards > Free Cards section.
Be sure to read about special offers for this program in the Hotel and Other Points Programs section of my Registration and Other Bonuses page.
WORLDHOTELS offers a straightforward minimum of 500 miles/stay at member hotels participating in the respective airline program in hundreds of locations worldwide on all rates unless explicitly noted otherwise in the rate description. Just show your frequent flyer card number at check-in. Twelve major international airlines serving every region of the world participate.
Be sure to read about special offers for this program in the Hotel and Other Points Programs section of my Registration and Other Bonuses page.
Fairmont Hotels offers 500 miles/qualifying stay at its hotels after you enroll in its President's Club. Various status type benefits are awarded after certain numbers of stays/year. Miles can be earned from American, Alaska, Air Canada, and Emirates Airlines. A qualifying stay to earn airline miles is booked under one of the following rates: published rack, package and corporate. Examples of non-eligible stays to earn airline miles are discounted rates (AAA, CAA, AARP), meetings, conventions, groups and government rates.
|Red Roof Inn RediCard||If you often stay in the inexpensive Red Roof Inns, the
RediCard will be of use to you. Earn 10 points/$1 spent at their Inns. 5,000 points convert to 1,000 Delta Airlines miles. (So that's 2 miles/$1 spent every time you spend $500 cumulative.) Read the terms and conditions. Points expire if no RediCard Preferred Member stay activity is recorded during a consecutive 14 month period, so this program is only for people who frequently stay in these Inns.
This post on FlyerTalk tells you how to get 500 points for receiving your statements online. Since I am not a member of the RediCard program, I cannot verify this offer or tell you when it expires.
Red Roof Inns are Accor Hotels properties, as are Motel 6's and other inexpensive lodgings worldwide. If find a similar program for other Accor properties, where the points convert to airline miles, please tell me about it. A Motel 6 points program would be really nice.
The Hotels.com Welcome Rewards® program offers credit towards a night's stay of the value of the average of you 10 nights paid stays. You must register to participate.
Hotels.com is listed on the Chase Ultimate Rewards shopping portal. This means that if you own one of the excellent Chase cards that earn Ultimate Rewards, you not only earn the extra points from the portal (up to 4/1$), I believe you also earn the double points for travel and hotels from the Chase Sapphire Preferred (SM) Card, Ink Bold® Business Card or Ink Plus® Business Card.
The Faqs also say
If you join the Welcome Rewards program after booking and your hotel stay has not been completed, you can still earn nights.
The S&H greenpoints shopping portal has resumed offering miles as rewards again. 11,900 Greenpoints gets you 500 miles on Alaska or Delta Airlines. (Search rewards for "miles".) For comparison shopping, 1 mile costs 23.8 points. Most of the merchants seem to be offering 20 points per dollar spent, which gets you only 0.84 mile per dollar spent. The list of merchants is large and familiar. Posting of points and rewarding of miles has been reliable in the past. This company has been around for a long time. Your parents probably remember S&H Green Stamps at their grocery store. (And in fact, you still can earn greenpoints at some grocery stores.)
Greenpoints is entering the services market. They have introduced a dining program, offers from Verizon, and a program for aviators. I expect that list to grow.
S&H greenpoints offers a free Visa Credit card with a 10,000 point up front bonus, which you can read about in my Credit Card page of this web site.
S&H reserves the right to terminate any membership if that member has been inactive for a period of 24 consecutive months. A member shall be considered "Inactive" for such time as the member has not engaged in either any greenpoint earning or spending transaction. Upon termination of an inactive account, the accrued greenpoints will be cancelled.
Amtrak strikes again!. Without any prior warning, Amtrak has posted in its terms and conditions for points to miles transfers the following:
Effective May 1st, 2008 the option to redeem Amtrak Guest Rewards points for airline miles, hotel points and experiential rewards will only be available to:They did this sort of thing before, by cancelling transfers of points to United Airlines miles without warning. So they may change the program again without warning. This program is not to be trusted. Use or move your points out whenever possible.
Caution: From the terms and conditions of the program:
"Points earned under the Program will not expire as long as the Program continues and the Member purchases travel on Amtrak within a 3-year period and provides sufficient documentation of such travel to Amtrak within at least 30 days of the Members travel. Sufficient documentation includes the original ticket stub, the Members name, signature, and Membership Number."There is a somewhat unsympathetic flyertalk discussion on this subject. I conclude that those who ride the train are proud of this and have no sympathy for those who don't. This is not an all bad thing.
Amtrak Guest Rewards is a useful points program for those who travel on Amtrak.
There's a standard 500 points bonus for signing up for Amtrak Guest Rewards if you take an Amtrak trip within 90 days of signup.
Amtrak lists it special deal for members of its Guest Rewards program here.
Caution: Amtrak is currently running a huge deficit, and is always asking Congress for more money, which it may not provide. Bankruptcy is possible, in which case you may loose any points in your account. I strongly suggest you convert points to miles or otherwise use them whenever you can.
|Pay your energy bill with your credit card||
Many utilities are now allowing you to pay your bill with a credit card, sometimes without a fee. A reader mentions this
My utility company, WPS (Wisconsin Public Service) does take credit cards, but charges $3.50 for each transaction. The trick is that you can charge up to $750 and still incur only the $3.50 charge. So this is an opportunity to prepay several months with a credit card (charging the maximum of $750) for only the $3.50 charge.
Caution: Be sure to compare prices to what you are already paying. Some say you will pay more for the miles offers, while other say you will pay less.
|Energy Plus and United, American, Delta, Virgin America, or Southwest Airlines, Jet Blue, Starwood, Amtrak, or Marriott Rewards , Priority Club, Wyndham Rewards, or Amtrak||
Energy Plus offers residents of New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, Illinois, Maryland, and Massachusetts United, American, or Delta miles, or Virgin America, Jet Blue, Marriott Rewards, Priority Club, or Amtrak points. Not all states are offered all miles or points offers. Check yours within each offer to be sure.
This seems to be a growing company. Please tell me about additions or changes to the Energy Plus offers. Thanks.
The company says you will save up to 15% on your electricity bill. It offers an all wind power option.
For comparison, the Energy Plus home page lists cash back and education offers.
I have given up keeping up on the details of each offer. This flyertalk discussion seems to keep up with them. I provide the links to the ones I know about. Read them carefully.
"The rate they quote for us in Connecticut is 10.55c per KWh. That is much less than the rate CL&P charge, but not the least expensive. The best rate, which I currently use, offers 10.25c per KWh. I reckon changing to Energy Plus would 'cost' me about $2 per month. For that I would get the 3,000 bonus miles obviously but also get about 170 miles per month. So even on an ongoing basis after the bonus, I am still getting about 170 miles for $2, which is fine, as I use my miles for International travel. You may think this is marginal though.
|Everything Energy and United Airlines||
Everything Energy offers 5,000 United Airlines miles for signing up with them, and then 2 miles for every $1 you spend on the energy charge portion of your bill. I can not find their service area on their website, but they seem to be based in Texas.
|Ohio Natural Gas and Delta Airlines||
Ohio Natural Gas offers Ohio residents 10,000 bonus Delta Airlines miles for signing up with them, and then one Delta Airlines mile per dollar paid on the natural gas portion of their bill.
|Georgia Natural Gas and Delta Airlines||
Georgia Natural Gas offers Georgia residents 5,000 bonus Delta Airlines miles for signing up with them, and then one Delta Airlines mile per dollar paid on the natural gas portion of their bill.
|Grand Rapids Energy and Delta Airlines||
Grand Rapids Energy offers customers in the DTE Gas Company and customers in the Consumers Energy service territories 2,500 Bonus Delta Airlines miles for signing up with them.
|Gexa Energy and American and Continental Airlines||
Gexa Energy offers some Texas residents American Airlines miles. Get details by going to Gexa's home page and clicking on Earn Airline Miles.
FlyerTalk has an excellent (very favorable) discussion on this program. Note the comment that you can buy Gexa's energy cheaper by not opting for the Continental Airlines program, but that you can still earn miles by paying with your credit card.
On April 27, 2006, a reader wrote
I did confirm that Auto bill pay for Gexa Energy residential accounts allow payment by Amex, Visa, and Mastercard with no fee. If you do not choose Auto bill pay and pay by phone or online, your credit card options (with $4.95 fee) are Visa, Mastercard, and Discover (No Amex). You cannot pay by mail with a credit card.
|Reliant Energy and American and United Airlines||
Reliant Energy offers American and United Airlines miles for its Reliant Energy Simple Solutions Flex Plan in the TXU Electric Delivery service territory. 15,000 miles for enrolling, plus 500 miles every month for 24 months while on this plan. I leave it to you to read the details.
|bounce energy and American Airlines||
bounce energy offers American Airlines miles for its electricity service in the Dallas - Fort Worth and down into central Texas areas.
|NRG and Airlines and Hotels||
NRG offers miles or points for its electricity and gas service in Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. First read this flyertalk discussion of the offer.
|SunPower Affiliate Solar Program and Hawaiian Airlines||
The SunPower Affiliate Solar Program offers 50,000 Hawaiian Airlines miles for the installation of a SunPower Residential System. I am unable to determine the location of its affiliates, but they do say they are worldwide, and the pulldown menu lists all states. 40,000 miles will get you a round trip between the mainland and the islands, for example. Nice bonus to sunny Hawaii for when the sun is not shining on your solar system.
Caution: The terms and conditions say "This offer must be presented at the time of inquiry, before a SunPower proposal for your home is generated; so, please be sure to notify your SunPower installer that you may qualify for this offer during your free solar evaluation." This indicates to me that the miles offer will cause your price to be higher.
Offers of miles for purchase of gasoline can be found on my Buying Stuff page in the Automobiles section.
There are a few really excellent blogs being published by people perhaps even more addicted than me to miles accumulation. Though I post most all of the opportunities to accumulate miles, with occasional commentary, the blogs tell you how best to make use of those opportunities. I frequently link to blog articles relevant to an opportunity I post.
Here are my favorite blogs. I read them daily.
Other Miles Finding Websites
|Other sites useful for finding free miles||
Milemaven and Frequent Flyer Bonuses do super jobs of finding bonuses for any route or airline you fly, or any hotel chain at which you stay. Always check these sites before you reserve a trip. Frequent Flyer Bonuses has a periodic newsletter.
SmarterTravel's Mile Finder database has a really useful site to help you get all the miles you deserve when you travel. Use the pulldown menus to search on your airline, or on a large list of frequent flyer partners to see who offers miles for what you are doing.
SmarterTravel offers several very worthwhile weekly e-mail newsletters, including Mile Alert for miles deals, and Deal Alert, a super newsletter that lets you know about airline deals from your home airport and other useful travel deals and discounts. This latter newsletter has saved me lots of money.
Randy Peterson runs the informative Web Flyer web site which offers information some of which is not published in his newsletter. He has probably been an expert on frequent flyer miles longer than most anyone else. Check out his Frequently Asked Questions section. It is quite useful, though it can be quite a bit out of date. (He doesn't mention the Hilton credit cards when appropriate, for example. So don't believe him when he says something doesn't exist.) Also visit his NotiFlyer page. It occasionally lists offers before I post them on my web site.
Tim Winship has an informative site dedicated to frequent flyers called FrequentFlier.com. It, also, can be quite out of date in some of its sections, like the credit card section.
Rewards Canada is a useful site for Canadians who are frequent flyers. The webmaster posts regularly on The FrequentFlier Forum as superdawg. Rewards Canada has free newsletter very useful to Canadians. It also features a Frequent Flyer Bonuses page, a compilation of bonus offers for airline and hotel programs from around the world. This page links to a nice bonus by route feature.
|Newsletters||There are a few excellent newsletters available, both of which are a source of information for this site.
|Discussion Forums on Frequent Flyer Miles||
The FlyerTalk Miles bulletin board is a the oldest forum on the subject, and has the most extensive posts on miles issues. But, it has a very large number of categories of subjects, and, although the individual threads have titles, the individual posts do not. It would take all day every day to read all new posts on all of the threads that might have miles info on them. I read the MilesBuzz and S.P.A.M. sections regularly, and post to them infrequently as pgary. If you find something of interest on one of the other threads, please tell me about it. Thanks. You may lurk or participate.
This reddit thread frequently lists miles offers not seen anywhere else - well, at least not until the rest of us copy it.
Canadians will be interested in the Rewards Canada Frequent Flyer Forum.
Australians will be interested in The Australian Frequent Flyer Bulletin Board.
Several airlines and hotels are either offering miles for donations to charities and/or are providing you the opportunity to donate miles or points. (A cynic would ask why the airlines would not just give them the ticket, and would wonder if the receiver of the miles has to go through the same restrictions and hassles for actually getting a ticket as the rest of us.)
Also see my list of charities which allow you to simply click on a link for free to cause sponsors to donate money to them. It is found on my Click for Miles, Money, and Good Causes page.
Miscellaneous Useful Programs and Websites
|Frequent-flyer partner database||
FlyVault is an amazingly useful website. It lists links to airline web pages, alliance web pages, articles on Hacks and How Tool's, and to very useful tools for getting an award ticket.
Frequent-flyer partner database promises to maintain lists of partner airlines
|The Funniest Forum Thread of All Time||
And finally, here is your reward for getting to the bottom of this page: The Funniest Forum Thread of All Time. Enjoy.