r/churning Jan 10 '22 Silver 1

Weekly Off Topic Thread - Week of January 10, 2022 Anything Goes

This is the Weekly Off-Topic thread

There's more to this hobby than just credit cards - it spreads out into travel aspirations, what luggage or wallet you're using, or what flavor kombucha your local WeWork is serving. Please use this thread to talk about all things even tangentially related to churning. Memes, jokes, and off-topic content are allowed (and encouraged) here. Please use our regular threads to ask basic questions, ask questions about what card to get, or talk about MS. But if it's off-topic elsewhere, you're on-topic here.

Regular rules still apply.

Have fun!

Note: Posting and soliciting referrals are still not allowed.

40 Upvotes

1

u/martyconlonontherun Jan 16 '22

Anyone know how to use the Headspace benefit with WOH biz? I can't find it anywhere for some reason. Like is it a linked account, just use the card or what?

5

u/michael72688 Jan 16 '22

Awhile back I got a Capital One Venture card and opted in for Capital One Shopping. Completely unrelated, I listed an iPhone SE (1st gen) on eBay. Then I got an email from Capital One stating "Earn 0.5% back in Shopping Rewards!" and below that was a single item, my eBay post for the iPhone. No, I didn't bid on it.

5

u/atojbk JFK Jan 15 '22

Thinking of going through all the online sports betting promos. Anything specific I need to look for?

1

u/lenin1991 HOT, DOG Jan 16 '22

Read the fine print for every promo: sometimes you need to click an Opt In link, sometimes you need to enter a promo code on a certain screen, sometimes it specifies the odds that qualify.

Look at the play through requirements, especially for the sign up bonuses: many just require you to play through the initial deposit & bonus match / freebet 1x, but I've come across some that require as much as 7x playthrough to get the stated value.

2

u/ajamke Jan 15 '22

I can’t do all the sportsbook ones in my state but I like PrizePicks(also limited to certain states). 100% bonus on up to $100 and easy to play through. And then they had a promo in December for deposit $500 get $200 bonus. An added bonus able to pay with CC with no fees and withdraw to bank account.

3

u/voscoreddit Jan 14 '22

Now that Yotta has opened up the Crypto Bucket, has anybody dug deep into their offering and have a strong opinion either direction? I have $10K just sitting in the standard account, and looks like I can get 2.5X the tickets by moving that into the Crypto side. It also seems like they continue to treat any earnings as standard 1099 for the consumer and handle all the crypto taxation from "their" end. For somebody who doesn't want to open up the tax headache of crypto, this seems fairly reasonable...yes?

1

u/Mantis_Toboggan_PCP BOS, 0/24 Jan 14 '22

Does Schwab pull for setting up a UTMA? Looking to set up for a few nephews using their grandparent as custodian. Will anyone get a hard pull for this?

-1

u/mickey972 Jan 13 '22

I started a remote job and I’m getting to know my colleagues virtually. When talking about hobbies, how do you slide churning in without getting into the weeds? A coworker mentioned how her family loves roadtrips, and I replied that I can’t be in a car longer for 3 hours. I also wanted to add I absolutely prefer flying and the luxuries that come with it, like award travel, biz class, and airport lounges; I didn’t tho cuz it prob would sound snooty.

0

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 15 '22

I don't even tell people I go on vacation.

3

u/beer68 Jan 14 '22

Don’t slide it in. It may naturally come up in conversation, but keep in mind the range of possible reactions to churning. Some folks think it’s rationalizing bad financial habits. A few get mad it cheats the banks. If you present it the wrong way to the wrong coworker, she might think you’re a credit risk or even a fraudster.

If my travel comes up, I wouldn’t shy away from telling a coworker that I got a good deal using points or discounted tickets from a credit card THAT I PAY IN FULL EVERY MONTH. But I wouldn’t go deeper unless there’s positive interest. And if she’s just talking about her road trips, I wouldn’t change the subject to talk my own lounge access.

5

u/lenin1991 HOT, DOG Jan 14 '22

biz class, and airport lounges; I didn’t tho cuz it prob would sound snooty.

It definitely would. Roadtrip coworker would think you're a jerk. Only situation I mention this to coworkers is when I'm traveling with them and can get them into the lounge too.

5

u/maxthedrummer SEA, lol/24 Jan 14 '22

I talk about it, but keep it high level. "I like to collect points and miles and find the best ways to use them." or just "I like to researching the best ways to save on travel, including using credit card bonuses". I found early on, years ago you can get a negative reaction from coworkers when you talk about the churning specifically or the number of cards I have or had. I have gotten a couple of referrals from them though.

6

u/abhirupduttamit BOS, BDL Jan 14 '22

“Can I interest you in some referrals?” Jk. For real though, why would you want to talk about churning as a hobby? Most people are very turned off by the idea of accumulating credit cards. How about you just say you’re passionate about traveling/flying?

3

u/chrumbles Jan 13 '22

"I play the points and miles game" and talk high level, maybe share pictures of our highlights, flights/hotels included if relevant. it's a legitimate hobby with tangible benefits and ROI, nothing to be ashamed of. a work-smart-not-hard hobby. if you want, you could throw in a line in there about "I have 800+ credit scores and no CC debt".

if they're interested in the how, I can talk more about it and offer unbiased recommendations. if not, no worries. often it leads to them using my referrals over time, so win-win.

8

u/URtheoneforme Jan 13 '22

It almost never works out. People are generally too caught up in "credit card = debt" and don't want to do the work that is required to churn. I've found that it's better to maybe admit to travel using miles and points, or otherwise, just say that you like to travel.

10

u/jfchops2 MSP Jan 13 '22

I don't, I just say I enjoy traveling. If someone comments on the expense I just say I enjoy finding deals and I use points whenever I can, two things that are true.

It's just not worth bringing it up with people who you don't know are well versed in personal finance and award travel. I know people who work in corporate finance who don't know the first thing about how credit scores and credit cards work. There's no upside to saying something to them that gets them thinking I'm drowning in debt and have a terrible credit score because I open a lot of credit cards.

2

u/shinebock IAH, HOU Jan 13 '22

I don't, I just say I enjoy traveling.

Same. I actually met one of the guys on my team only because he was flying back into LAX (where he lives) from a weekend trip around the same time I was doing a mileage run last month. So it wasn't a completely pointless MR!

8

u/liquor_in_the_front CIP, PPK Jan 13 '22

"I enjoy traveling using points and miles"

3

u/michael72688 Jan 14 '22

This is a great opener. Then if any of them are interested, they'll ask for more information and if they don't, then don't take it any further.

2

u/pointsinthepool Jan 13 '22

Signed up in late October for the Sam’s Club $45 deal when Amex had an offer for $25 back. Already received and spent the original $45 gift card for signing up. They sent me a new one yesterday. Email title Walmart, subject Walmart sent you a gift. Someone else mentioned they received one too in a Discord group, check your email if you signed up for that deal.

3

u/thekingoftherodeo BOS, MAN Jan 13 '22

I saw that email and just pegged it as being a scam.

Conflation of Walmart/Sams Club and "The Gift Card Shop" as the sender email. Seemed off.

Now that I look again, its actually legit - cheers!

3

u/pointsinthepool Jan 13 '22

Their emails do look sketchy. I deleted the offer a couple days ago for the $20 gcs, figured that was a scam. Then I saw it was a legit offer on Doc. You’d think they could do better with their emails.

3

u/findmepoints Jan 13 '22

completely forgot about two united passes that i have expiring today. PM me if you want them

7

u/alaskantraveler Jan 12 '22

This is a data point. I participated in Sofi promotion for up to $1k bonus. Took out a personal loan for $75k on Oct. 26(that is the max they would allow for me). Paid the loan back immediately. Got charged like $30 in interest. 75,000 points posted. Have to have the app to opt in for their points program. Was able to redeem the points for $750 in cash then immediately transfer out to another bank.

2

u/GodLovesFrags OAK, TRE Jan 13 '22

I did this too for $90,000 on 11/1 but no points posted. Did you follow up with them? I’m 6 days behind you, so I don’t mind waiting another week.

2

u/alaskantraveler Jan 13 '22

I wasn't watching that closely, and didn't have the app so not exactly sure when the points became available. I had to opt in/sign up for the points/rewards program then the points became visible.

1

u/GodLovesFrags OAK, TRE Jan 13 '22

They said the offer ended after I applied but before it was funded, so it wasn’t attached to my account. They’re putting a ticket in for me but said it might be too late.

4

u/thekingoftherodeo BOS, MAN Jan 12 '22

Anyone churning meal kits here? Definitely a golden age for it right now imo; between portal stacking and cycling through 'welcome back' offers, I think I've been paying < $5 a meal for 8 meals/week for about 6 months at this stage.

No doubt it'd be cheaper to meal plan/prep but honestly its just so easy to have a $30 HelloFresh box arrive and not have to grocery shop or think about what to cook.

6

u/reddit_user_2016 Jan 14 '22

Def not hating on the value proposition but I hate the waste and packaging generated by these meal delivery services.

2

u/garage_cleaner Jan 13 '22

Always excited for the offers, but limited selections seeing as they have to ship to Hawaii. MIL used to do blue apron, after several warm/rotting and lost boxes during last years USPS debacle, I’m wary. If anyone has been churning meals preps successful in Hawaii or Alaska, I’d appreciate your recs.

2

u/nxlinc TUS Jan 13 '22

I used to do it with Hello fresh- they would send me "come back" offers for 60-80% off my first box, so I would get a box, skip a week or 2 then cancel. The past several months its been "$100 off" which turned out to be $10 off the first 10 boxes, not worth it imo.

1

u/michael72688 Jan 14 '22

Yeah, the one I signed up for was 50% off the first week and then 10% for the next 10 weeks. They are basically only frontloading one week. And then they throw in a free desert in weeks 4 and 8. Not really worth it.

1

u/SideStepCrossover Jan 13 '22

Just did the Sunbasket $75 in swagbucks stacked with $25 off $50 Amex. My favorite one so far!

2

u/carpethediem5 BUR Jan 13 '22

Wish I could but P2 follows a very specific diet. If not that, I absolutely would have.

1

u/michael72688 Jan 14 '22

Yeah, some of them have what they call "diabetic" which I assume means low carb, but they aren't low enough.

1

u/carpethediem5 BUR Jan 14 '22

Exactly! 30 grams of carbs per meal seems like an impossible standard for the food industry (salads aside). :)

3

u/guess_my_password Jan 12 '22

I went through a month of churning Hello fresh with multiple accounts and got to a point that I was able to "gift" myself a couple free boxes, but after that the money spent per meal ended up being more expensive than buying groceries and cooking, and the management of several accounts and cancelling boxes was too annoying. It was fun while it lasted! I still use the website for easy recipe ideas.

23

u/isaacides JOK, STR Jan 12 '22

This has probably been brought up before but I just had an epiphany about a couple banks' smart assistants.

CapOne has Eno which is just 'One' backwards

BofA has Erica which is the latter part of amERICA

Wells Fargo has Fargo (not really an epiphany)

15

u/the_fit_hit_the_shan DEN, ESB Jan 12 '22

I had a shower moment like that the other month:

I subscribe to YouTube Premium since I often have it running in the background while I work, but there is a hacked version of the YouTube app for Android called YouTube Vanced that replicates a lot of the features of Premium. It suddenly hit me that it's called "Vanced" and not "Advanced" because it removes ads...

3

u/guess_my_password Jan 12 '22

Literally just downloaded Vanced and I never would have put this together.

3

u/isaacides JOK, STR Jan 12 '22

Woah

10

u/the_fit_hit_the_shan DEN, ESB Jan 11 '22

TFW someone from Amex calls and leaves a cryptic message that they urgently need you to call them back, before calling again sixty seconds later, all making you think that Amex have finally noticed you in the way we generally want to avoid, before the same rep sends you an email saying that they want to let you know about the new invite-only Kabbage business credit offerings...

1

u/dnmlanml22 Jan 12 '22

I get a kabbage mailer a week. I’ve already had the account 2 months…

5

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 11 '22

You have to take someone to the airport & need to be there by 12:30pm. You happen to have a flight that same day leaving at 4:30pm. You live 20 mins from the airport. Do you:

A). Just stay there and sit in the Skyclub for almost 4 hours? (Meh)

B). Change your own flight from a 3 hour non-stop to a 5 hour connecting itinerary that leaves at 2:30p with an hour layover in SLC (Bleh). Shortens the amount of time waiting at one airport and spreads it out over two, the final destination arrival time is almost identical. Also 4k skypesos cheaper.

C). Do the 12:30p drop-off, drive back home, then leave at 3pm to catch your 4:30pm non-stop flight (Eh.) This is would be the routine if not for having to play taxi to the airport earlier in the day.

D). Don't bother with any of it because covid will just cancel your plans again

E). Something else

20

u/POINTSmetotheMILES Jan 12 '22

F) Pay for the persons Uber

2

u/chrumbles Jan 12 '22

pre-covid I'd do A and bring a book, but now I'd do C or maybe D. B is enticing because of the lower cost, but the lounge's chair is much more comfortable than an economy seat.

3

u/CreditDogo TRN, LFT Jan 12 '22

I would probably do C to save on airport parking $ and spend the additional drive to/from home thinking about how B would have been a better choice.

1

u/IChurnToBurn THS, SUX Jan 11 '22

A depends on the quality of the Skyclub. But probably B. However, I'm a Avi-geek, so my perspective is pretty skewed.

1

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 13 '22

The PHX Skyclub, which is actually above average considering the miniscule presence Delta has there compared to AA & Southwest. I was leaning B but now more inclined to do A. I think I can get the hanging around time down to 3ish hours which is tolerable if the club isn't full (which it never is).

4

u/Memotome Jan 11 '22

B. Get to final destination at same time and save some Sky bolivares.

2

u/manageroftheyear BAS, BAL Jan 11 '22

If you’re only 20 minutes, would an Uber for the first flight be an option? Based on the anguish over this, it feels like the $15-$25 Uber would solve the problem and let you stay home for those extra hours.

5

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 11 '22

would an Uber for the first flight be an option?

nope, for reasons (that I don't want to go into)

12

u/POINTSmetotheMILES Jan 12 '22

I hope the reasons aren’t fucking stupid

13

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 12 '22

They are. So stupid. I'm sorry I disappointed you. Thanks for playing.

1

u/shinebock IAH, HOU Jan 11 '22

Probably A. I'd say B if the departure time was a bit earlier/layover time was longer.

1

u/URtheoneforme Jan 11 '22

Is there another direct flight during those 4 hours? You could always try doing the same day standby and worst case you end up doing A).

1

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 11 '22

Is there another direct flight during those 4 hours?

nope

6

u/katiedh Jan 11 '22

A, always. I hate driving back and forth to the airport and I love people watching. Easy choice.

1

u/GoBears16 Jan 11 '22

Anyone have a recommendation for travel insurance specifically related to Covid? Going to Mexico in April and don’t want to be SOL if I test positive on the way back. Specifically just covering any canceled flights or needing to quarantine. Everything I’ve seen also includes medical care, which I don’t need.

1

u/garage_cleaner Jan 13 '22

I’m curious why you don’t need medical? I imagine whatever supplementary you normally carry may not carry life flight, which can be unbelievably pricy. Keeping in mind you may not just get sick with Covid, but may experience a different medical emergency or accident.

4

u/bananaboat2569 Jan 11 '22

Linking previous thread, I’ve purchased this insurance, they specifically cover COVID quarantine costs if you are mandated to quarantine by the foreign government:

https://www.reddit.com/r/churning/comments/pb7egs/daily_discussion_thread_august_25_2021/habqr50/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=ios_app&utm_name=iossmf&context=3

2

u/GoBears16 Jan 11 '22

Thank you!

5

u/braclark BOS Jan 11 '22

I've seen some hotels (specifically Ziva) offerscovid insurance at check in.

For just $49 plus tax, per person, per stay and paid at the time of arrival, Playa’s Extended Stay Protection provides peace-of-mind that in the unlikely event of a positive COVID-19 test result, quarantine accommodations will be provided at no additional cost for up to 14 days.

1

u/GoBears16 Jan 11 '22

This is cool, thank you!

-4

u/doodler1977 Jan 11 '22

don’t want to be SOL

...don't go? i mean...world's a shitshow right now

1

u/happilytravel Jan 11 '22

I have a trip booked for Europe in April. Really unsure of it now, but hate to cancel again. Don’t want to get stuck in case of a positive test. What are you doing if you have an international trip in a similar time frame?

[edit] just saw a similar post down below 😝

2

u/[deleted] Jan 11 '22

[deleted]

3

u/bigheadsoftbody BOI, SEA Jan 12 '22

well on our way to herd immunity and the relaxing of restrictions.

This makes too much sense to actually be implemented

5

u/CasinoAccountant Jan 11 '22

I'd feel good about April tbh

7

u/jfchops2 MSP Jan 11 '22

Staying in the US until international travel in 2019 normal again. Still have 14 states left to visit and I can check them off faster without the lure of overseas trips.

3

u/BleedBlue__ Jan 11 '22 edited Jan 11 '22

Does anyone else actually really enjoy the Wine offers on Amex (Not talking Macy's)?

There's been some pretty great deals at Stags Leap, Beringer, Caymus, and B Cellars recently. When you factor in the offer, you can get some fantastic wines at a much much lower price than retail.

1

u/josephson93 Jan 11 '22

Seen any good deals for reds lately? I'm due for another batch but haven't kept up with the offers. Thanks.

5

u/BleedBlue__ Jan 11 '22 edited Jan 11 '22

If you’re just looking for a casual drinking wine the Knights Valley Cabernet from Berlinger the other poster recommended is a good choice. AMEX offer is 75 off 250. There’s currently a “TAKE30” code for 30% off and $10 shipping

It’s listed on their website for $36, total wine sells it for $35.

10 bottles x $36 = $360

30% off = $252 + 10 shipping = $262

Amex $75 off = $187

So you’re effective getting the wine for $19 a bottle or roughly half off. That’d be my choice without venturing into the more expensive bottles.

If you wanna go a little bit more expensive I’d go Stags Leap 2018 125th Anniversary Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s $60 a bottle, same Amex offer, and “TAKE25” for 25% off. You get 6 bottles for $195 or ~$30 a bottle

1

u/josephson93 Jan 12 '22

Awesome. Thanks.

3

u/Toastbuns TOO, AST Jan 11 '22

I dont drink much wine but I did a few deals last year. I had some bottles on a shelf in my basement and my cat knocked 3 over which smashed onto the concrete floor. What a mess.

6

u/shinebock IAH, HOU Jan 11 '22

Damn cat can't handle its alcohol!

2

u/normalinternetperson Jan 11 '22

We used the Beringer offer last month and are really enjoying the Knights Valley Cab and Oak Knoll Chardonay for the price. Their holiday sale stacked with the Amex offer got us a case delivered for about $20/bottle.

6

u/[deleted] Jan 11 '22

[deleted]

11

u/the_fit_hit_the_shan DEN, ESB Jan 11 '22

I feel left out of the fun :(

As a sober alcoholic, I sympathize

-8

u/BagDifferent3296 Jan 11 '22

Capital one savor one credit card reliable for MS ? Please Let Me know 3% Cash Back , Spend 9,000$ First 3 Months

3

u/Econ0mist CSH, OUT Jan 11 '22 edited Jan 12 '22

Better suited for the question thread, but I’ll answer anyway.

In my experience, lenders care much more about the source and frequency of your payments than what you’re buying.

If you spend a lot of money every month (MS) but always pay your credit card from the same external account and never overpay/prepay the credit card, you look like an eccentric rich dude, and the credit card company will mostly leave you alone (within limits).

If you spend a lot of money every month and have payments coming from money orders, anonymous bill pay services and multiple checking accounts, you look a lot more unusual, and the credit card company is going to consider shutting down your account.

With this advice in mind, I haven’t had any issues doing a decent volume of MS with Capital One (substantially more than $3000/month)

1

u/BagDifferent3296 Jan 14 '22

Once I Have The Card Physically in hand Ready To Go MS Do I Have my credit card already payed before I go spend or spend the pay the credit card back

2

u/Econ0mist CSH, OUT Jan 14 '22

Pay the card only after you spend money. Never pre-pay or overpay a credit card.

1

u/BagDifferent3296 Jan 12 '22

I love you bro

6

u/krivad Jan 11 '22

What are people’s thoughts/plans are Europe travel for this summer? Have a tentative trip booked for May-June, but really starting to reconsider.

1

u/discounted_cash_flow Jan 13 '22

Planning on a trip to Cannes/Monaco/Nice after Labor Day weekend. Glad to see others are optimistic.

1

u/PDX_douche_bag PDX Jan 12 '22

I feel optimistic about European travel by that point. P2 and I have a trip to Iceland and Spain in June so we're hoping for the best.

1

u/nxlinc TUS Jan 11 '22

I am booked for April and will see what happens - too much stuff can change between now and then to be worth worrying about right now. I am optimistic though. We got really lucky with our timing going to Europe last Sept/Oct where the cases were quite low - hoping the same thing may happen again for April.

A friend of mine is supposed to go to AMS/ OSL in a few weeks and both countries have 10 day quarantine now - he is trying to figure out what to do.

1

u/mapalm Jan 11 '22

We really want to visit family in Europe this summer. But stories like this are making us take a wait-and-see approach for now: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/11/world/europe/omicron-europe.html

1

u/flyiingpenguiin Jan 11 '22

Meh it's gonna be like this every year. It's just the risk you take to travel these days.

1

u/cexpertWV Jan 11 '22

Amsterdam for us in early June!

1

u/MorsAnteDedecus8 Jan 11 '22

Revenge trip to France, Belgium, Netherlands, and Germany booked for May. It was supposed to happen last year. Doing it come hell or high water this time. Just gonna get that big pharma shootup again right before going.

2

u/MyDearPanda Jan 11 '22

At least at the moment, Netherlands has a mandatory 10 day quarantine for US travelers (unless you've spent 10 days in the EU prior to arrival). Probably would expect that to be gone by May, but who knows

1

u/MorsAnteDedecus8 Jan 12 '22

I'm thinking we will have been in the EU for at least 10 days by the time we hit the Netherlands, but your helpful comment lead me to start researching all the different travel restrictions for our trip. Thanks!

5

u/CapedBaldy Jan 11 '22

I think Europe seems reasonable and very likely to be possible. Considering diverting my plans on visiting east Asian (Taiwan and Japan) to go to the Balkans or Southern Europe instead.

3

u/MoreThanNicePolynice Jan 11 '22

Taiwan seems like a no-go due to their quarantine system (typically 2 weeks, and that's if you can find a spot as the approved hotels/facilities can book up quickly), I would plan a different backup imho

2

u/CapedBaldy Jan 11 '22

Yeah this is why I'm floating alternatives. It's unfortunate because I have friends that currently live in both countries and it doesn't seem like either will be staying beyond 2022.

6

u/dennis_the_menace253 ATL, DEN Jan 11 '22

Visited Paris, Rome, Athens and couple Greek islands last July and it was great. Usually avoid Europe in summer but it was awesome. Headed to Milan then Greece for a month Mid May-Mid June. Much more optimistic for it than Asia/Oceania.

5

u/joe-movie SLC Jan 11 '22

Europe way more likely than most Asian countries, at least. P2 has Japan in June which we're fully expecting to cancel, but Eastern Europe in September that we expect to travel. Fortunately, most point bookings are fully refundable so it makes cancelling a little less painful than it would be otherwise.

3

u/shinebock IAH, HOU Jan 11 '22

Already bought tickets for a music festival that will be in August. Business class flights booked.

4

u/DCJoe1 Jan 11 '22

Have a trip fully booked out for much of August. Award tickets that are fully refundable. Airbnbs that are mostly refundable. Figure summer in Europe is pretty easy to do safely- pretty much never have to eat indoors if you don't want to.

2

u/Jacob0050 Jan 11 '22

pray, that's what I am doing. I have a good bit of countries I am planning to go to. Belgium, Lithuania, Prague, UK, and hopefully Norway. It seems that the eastern European countries are more lax on closing their borders and lock downs. So worst case for me is I go instead back West I just keep heading east after Lithuania. That's how I see it.

5

u/joimintz Jan 11 '22

This is for those that frequent LAS: it seems that you can earn 10 Wyndham points per dollar spent at Caesars properties, which is better than the Caesars Rewards rate of 1 reward credit we dollar spent. However, certain Caesars rooms can’t be booked on Wyndham and probably the resort fee won’t be waived unless it is an award stay. I have Caesars Diamond with a cash stay coming up and I’m going to try to give them my Wyndham number at check in to see if I can earn 10x points. If anyone has done this before (either trying to earn Wyndham points on a Caesars stay or trying to get Caesars elite benefits on a Wyndham stay) with success I would love to learn about it.

5

u/DCJoe1 Jan 11 '22

Luggage comes up from time to time here. Am a big fan of carry-on sized backpacks for more space (no wheels or frame) and ability to maneuver more easily when on the move.

Had an eBags weekender bag for years that was fine, but comfort when full was lacking, mostly from a weak sternum strap and no hip belt. Had looked at replacements, but the ones I wanted were too expensive.

Over Thanksgiving weekend Peak Design had a 30% sale, and I grabbed their Travel Backpack for $210 instead of $300.

Got a chance to use it on a trip, and WOW. So comfortable, the design and different compartments work so well. Great purchase, looking forward to a lot of good usage in the next decade.

Not surprising the company started making gear and carrying cases to photographers. I have noticed those companies design super thoughtful bags.

3

u/chowfuntime ASL Jan 11 '22

How much does it weigh compare to weekender? I know the weekender is sturdy, but that adds to the weight when you got no wheels.

1

u/DCJoe1 Jan 11 '22

This is my old one (eTech 2.0 weekender convertible, they don't make it anymore), 2.75 pounds.

https://travelbagquest.com/ebags-etech-2-0-weekender-convertible-review/

The Peak Design Travel Backpack is 4.5 pounds. Mostly from sturdier materials and a bit more structure, such that it "sits up" in a way the ebags one doesn't. Makes it easier to pack.

5

u/johnny____utah Jan 11 '22 edited Jan 12 '22

Had to cancel a trip this weekend for Naples/Everglades due to being laid up with Covid. Which sucks, obviously. And now I have quickly expiring SWA travel funds.

Any recommendations for a non-freezing February getaway, reachable via Southwest? I’m not really into snow sports.

Edit: looks like we’re flying into Orlando and doing the space coast at the end of February. Supposed to be a SpaceX launch, plus there’s a fairly new Hyatt Place right there for only 8k a night. Also going to hit up Ocala for an Everglades replacement.

1

u/doodler1977 Jan 11 '22

Aruba?

tho...with spring training starting up, i think the Fort Meyers/Tampa routes will start up again. That's not too far north...

5

u/435880Churnz Jan 11 '22

Why not just re-schedule Florida?

2

u/johnny____utah Jan 11 '22

Doesn’t look possible/affordable until next winter.

3

u/435880Churnz Jan 11 '22

I suspect that nowhere warm that people want to go is going to be cheap, especially domestic. International might be cheaper if you're willing to risk getting stranded with a positive covid test.

On the other hand, they can't even give away rooms in San Francisco.

2

u/findmepoints Jan 11 '22

confused...why not naples/everglades anymore/again?

2

u/johnny____utah Jan 11 '22

The dates I checked for the Hyatt House in February were either sold out, or no points. Cash is $600 a night.

I have to use the travel funds by May and already have an April trip planned. Will definitely book next year, it doesn’t seem to be in the cards this year.

5

u/findmepoints Jan 11 '22

hyatt regency coconut point is available for 20k points/night for feb 11-13 (valentine weekend).

definitely worth 20k/night although the rooms are a little dated/tired. brunch on sunday is awesome and highly recommended

2

u/johnny____utah Jan 11 '22

Thanks for the heads up. I guess I was assuming that weekend would be even less available.

2

u/OutofToiletPaper Jan 11 '22

Mexico? Los Cabo? PVR? Hawaii?

2

u/johnny____utah Jan 11 '22

Not really feeling Hawaii, and I’m pretty sure my girlfriend hasn’t renewed her passport. Maybe Puerto Rico…

3

u/guess_my_password Jan 11 '22

Anywhere in the, you guessed it, Southwest! California, Phoenix, Texas (Austin)?

4

u/Lower-Kangaroo6032 Jan 11 '22

Super Bowl in Vegas!

33

u/pkk101 Jan 11 '22

Just churned 1x through nearly all major casino sign up bonuses in Michigan for a friend. Total time invested, around 20 hours. Total take, ~$8100. Needed $5k seed money. 90% of the churn was no risk with the other 10% having some risk but very high ev. Could have done 100% no risk for about $6k. This is killing bank account bonuses, imo, especially because I was able to do it all in a matter of a few weeks. The velocity of the payback is very high, though it requires more attention daily..

2

u/Pandamonium98 Jan 11 '22

Can’t wait for Texas to legalize gambling

1

u/zachalmers Jan 11 '22

6556comments

requires a MI address i assume?

1

u/pkk101 Jan 11 '22

I think it might be ok to have an address outside Michigan, but you definitely need to be in Michigan while placing bets.

9

u/pothchola Jan 11 '22

Can you elaborate? What kind of sign-up bonuses? How do you cash out?

5

u/pkk101 Jan 11 '22

A combination of risk free bets with hedges on a different book and light casino play for casino bonuses. You can move cash both directions via PayPal.

7

u/[deleted] Jan 11 '22

[deleted]

1

u/Smart_Dumb Jan 12 '22

The sportsbook won't report to the IRS unless you win a wager of $600 and +30000 odds. But yes, the proper way to report your earnings is a joke. Also, moving money with paypal can trigger a 1099k with just $600 in a calendar year.

7

u/Lower-Kangaroo6032 Jan 11 '22

When California gets its day I hope it’s as lucrative

10

u/brainchasm Jan 10 '22

I think I've settled on my watch collection. It'll be three in total. Two are somewhat travel-related.

Orient Star Moon Phase LE

Casio Oceanus OCW-S5000AP-2AJF

Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT

The Orient Star is on my wrist, the Oceanus is in the mail, and I'm maneuvering funds around to purchase the Grand Seiko, likely this week.

The Oceanus is a solar-powered digital, and has more features than jeesus(!) including global auto-set, and the Grand Seiko is just a GMT.

Those two should be super useful with all the travel I'm not doing... :rolleyes:

1

u/JohnofCharleston Jan 11 '22

That Orient Star is gorgeous. I haven't looked at their stuff in recent years, why'd you have to show me!?

9

u/IChurnToBurn THS, SUX Jan 10 '22 edited Jan 11 '22

And here I am sporting a MVMT and the Pac-Man Timex from Saks.

1

u/thisfits DSN, YYY Jan 11 '22

You got the Pac-Man Timex? That’s awesome!

4

u/Toastbuns TOO, AST Jan 10 '22

Wow that Orient is hot! Love the GS as well.

I think I'm roughly done for at least a few years.

I have a Hamilton Jazzmaster Viewmatic 37, a Seiko SKX013, a Nomos Orion 35, and recently picked up a birth year 16220 DateJust with Blue Dial.

1

u/Redcorns SEA Jan 11 '22

Congrats! Looks like you got your Datejust for a good price?

1

u/Toastbuns TOO, AST Jan 11 '22

I didnt get my datejust from that site, it was just a link to show an example. Believe it or not I actually got it for significantly less than that link, though I bought mine without box/papers. My plan was to wear it not buy it as a collectible so while I would have liked the full kit, it wasn't a deal breaker for me.

3

u/Isavethings DTW Jan 11 '22

Love the Nomos. So crisp and fresh

3

u/Toastbuns TOO, AST Jan 11 '22

It was an engagement gift from my now P2. A couple years later I got her the 33 in rose

Https://nomos-glashuette.com/en/orion/orion-33-rose-325

2

u/Isavethings DTW Jan 11 '22

Damn, that is a gorgeous watch. Are either you or P2 single? Congrats on the gift!

3

u/brainchasm Jan 10 '22

Congrats on that DateJust! That's gorgeous!

3

u/Toastbuns TOO, AST Jan 10 '22

Thank you! I really had to be patient to get it. I had all sorts of automated searches and alerts setup. The right one finally showed up and I knew that I had to pull the trigger.

1

u/legoswag123 MOO, LAH Jan 10 '22

Nice choice with the GS. The dials are just incredible. I have an SBGA413 and the dial has me staring for hours.

2

u/brainchasm Jan 10 '22

I'd have to get the SBGA415 to get the proper sekki for myself.

But the "champagne" dials on GSes are apparently unique to them, and their (secret?) process. And I can't afford the blueish one I want anyway, so the GMT sorta finagled its way onto the list. :)

1

u/legoswag123 MOO, LAH Jan 10 '22

Champagne dials are awesome, but GS does textured dials best IMO. Blows watches that are even 5-10x in price away.

7

u/lenin1991 HOT, DOG Jan 10 '22

At those prices, I'd expect to be able to control time.

2

u/chrumbles Jan 11 '22

lol, it's more a fashion statement than a functional device at that point. I'd still prefer my apple watch since it has alarms, timers, camera control, text messages, other app alerts, weather etc. practical over posh.

2

u/lenin1991 HOT, DOG Jan 11 '22

Yeah, I get that. And I am distinctly unfashionable: the cost of that last watch is probably more than all the clothes, shoes, and accessories I own combined.

1

u/GoBears16 Jan 10 '22

Love the GS being “just a GMT.” Beautiful watch! I’m hoping to try and save up and buy a GS GMT with their 9F quartz by the end of the year

2

u/brainchasm Jan 10 '22

It's pretty impossible to find an elegant GS with the complications I like, so I decided on the GMT. But my thing for GS is the Spring Drive. If I can't have a GS with a Spring Drive, then I don't need a GS.

1

u/GoBears16 Jan 10 '22

Oh I would love a spring drive, just don’t think I can afford that for several years now

36

u/Sea__Larus Jan 10 '22

How much more are banks and call centers going to beat the "higher than normal call volume" drum? My guess is forever.

9

u/Pandamonium98 Jan 11 '22

And the “our menu options have recently changed” that seems to always apply

10

u/DCJoe1 Jan 11 '22

Google "Hold For Me" option works amazingly well. Such a great feature.

4

u/buildingcredit Jan 11 '22

I love it too. Enough of a reason to switch to a Pixel. Only wish it doesn't scare the crap out of me each time it's ready for me lol

4

u/DCJoe1 Jan 11 '22

Absolutely that ring is loud and shocking!

11

u/Toastbuns TOO, AST Jan 10 '22

How about the ones that tell you this but then havent implemented a callback feature yet. Worst.

7

u/generic19name Jan 10 '22

Staffing in positions like that has been difficult with the pandemic. From what I see, until those types of jobs become more competitive, the labor market will avoid them.

10

u/Sea__Larus Jan 11 '22

I'm sure that's been happening, but that's still a staffing/employer issue, not a "call volume" issue.

7

u/generic19name Jan 11 '22

Banks be like: Call volume is due because we don’t staff enough. Go pound sand

3

u/MoPointsMoProblems Jan 10 '22

An Interesting prediction thread on flight trends for next year to couple with the credit card prediction threads. https://scottscheapflights.com/guides/travel-predictions-for-2022

12

u/JohnCalvinCoolidge Jan 11 '22

The domestic in-flight mask requirement will expire or be repealed no later than June 30

I'd bet against it, personally.

3

u/Econ0mist CSH, OUT Jan 11 '22

I think a domestic air travel vaccine mandate is possible (low probability), but only after the November election

6

u/chrumbles Jan 10 '22 edited Jan 10 '22

The recent negative covid test requirement to fly to the US will be repealed no later than September 30. (60% confidence)

I hope the world is in a good enough place to do so at this point, I have our first international trip post-COVID starting exactly 9/30 to Europe. otherwise just doing domestic for now, we really don't want to be locked in a hotel for 2 weeks and have to burn PTO.

-6

u/435880Churnz Jan 10 '22

My prediction would have to be the opposite. I think the negative covid test rule to return to the US will extend past September 30. BeCuZ vArIaNtS.

3

u/shinebock IAH, HOU Jan 11 '22

Yep, agree. I don't even want to start thinking about how long we'll be stuck with the onboard mask mandate for.

0

u/435880Churnz Jan 11 '22

Probably around when the 2024 Presidential Election season is in high gear and the incumbent needs a feel good moment.

4

u/someones1 DEN Jan 11 '22

Your comment sounds like the predictions that the pandemic would magically go away the day after Biden was sworn in.

-8

u/435880Churnz Jan 11 '22 edited Jan 11 '22

The pandemic is arguably over now. Frankly, it’s over in most of the country. Have you been around the usa? Masks and distancing are nonexistent over the vast majority of the country and no one cares about Covid like it’s 2019. It’s over everywhere except a few of the bluest cities and states who will be living like Its 2020 until 2030.

The omnicron variant is mild enough that to a vaccinated individual, it’s like a cold. But we are gonna keep wearing masks on planes for a long time. And when Biden needs a campaign pick me up, the call will be made to ditch them.

15

u/urgetopurge Jan 10 '22

Anyone else really miss those Hilton dining credits every month? Gave me a reason to try out a lot of places I never would have

1

u/Newchurnerlyfe Jan 11 '22

Oh thought those continued into 2022

2

u/CericRushmore Jan 11 '22

Only in our dreams.

6

u/AlbinoAlex Jan 10 '22

Yup, also the Shop Small credits. Trying to cut down on eating out, but it was definitely nice to have (part) of the cost reimbursed. Especially since all those credits were on non-AF cards.

6

u/urgetopurge Jan 10 '22

As someone who came from the original no AF Aspire (about 2 years ago), once you downgraded, the original 20$ dining credits never went away. So I had those and the downgraded 5$ dining credits. So basically a total of 25$ for a no fee hilton honors card. Truly the gift that keeps on giving.

2

u/Eurynom0s LAX Jan 10 '22

I had $10/month on my Marriott Personal. On the one hand it was nice to get a dining credit that was straight cash value instead of having to go through a specific vendor like with the Gold dining credit, but there was still an element some months of having an order I wouldn't have placed without feeling compelled to use up the credit,* plus I don't carry it for anything else so it is sort of nice to not have to remember to use it each month.

*Bad for the waistline, not just the wallet.

3

u/mikep4 4/24 Jan 11 '22

All I did with them is load the Chick Fil A app on autopilot once per month.

1

u/someones1 DEN Jan 11 '22

Yep combination of Chick Fil A and Starbucks.

1

u/guess_my_password Jan 10 '22

I usually go out to eat at least 4-5x in a month so it was really easy to get the $10 credit on my personal Marriott. That more than the FNC easily justified keeping it open for another year. I'll probably cancel it next renewal at this point.

6

u/jaktf Jan 10 '22

I remember towards the end of November thinking about where to place an order while I still had thanksgiving leftovers in the fridge just to use up the credit.

7

u/Lower-Kangaroo6032 Jan 10 '22

What’s your routine for keeping up with blogs and other info relevant to this hobby? I’m pretty disorganized - just randomly checking doc, frequent miler, this sub, and occasionally others - which works out fine until I miss a few days - I was surprised how out of the loop I feel after not spending as much time with it over the holidays.

6

u/Parts_Unknown- Jan 11 '22

99% of blog info comes from reddit or FT (not always attributed). Why bother with regurgitated info

2

u/tchr619 Jan 11 '22

Travelbloggerbuzz on e of the best ones.

3

u/chrumbles Jan 10 '22

subscribing to their emails makes it much easier to just skim the headlines on emails that are pushed to you rather than having to pull for the info.

3

u/trilogy-09 Jan 10 '22

Milesfeed and only look at Doc, OMaat, FM, LL

Travelisfree for when it was still alive.

11

u/btr5017 BWI Jan 10 '22

milesfeed.com

19

u/Lieroo WEW, ORK Jan 10 '22

DoC's summary of other blogs in its low-clickbait format makes catching up easier. Reading other blogs is like looking for a recipe and you have to scroll 30 pages of their backpacking trip before they tell you the damn thing.

7

u/RobotMaster1 Jan 10 '22

re: recipes - this website cuts through the clutter.

https://www.justtherecipe.com/

11

u/garettg SEA, PAE Jan 10 '22

Use feedly, subscribe to the blogs, easy way to see new posts quickly in one place and by post title you can ignore the things you aren't interested in. Can save posts for things you might want to refer back to in the future.

3

u/tdashrom MIA Jan 10 '22

DoC does a daily email wrap-up of all posts, which is nice for days I don’t check

2

u/Newchurnerlyfe Jan 11 '22

I get their weekly emails... Now do I want them daily...

20

u/[deleted] Jan 10 '22

[deleted]

1

u/xosotypical Jan 10 '22

wow 5 months?! what are you going to do with those free minutes every day now? haha. and good on you for not giving up. can i ask how far in advance you were checking? do those availability always have such a large range for when they can open up?

2

u/[deleted] Jan 11 '22

[deleted]

1

u/xosotypical Jan 11 '22

oh nice! congrats to you. that must feel awesome, all the time paid off! i have a good number of points across the diff flexible systems but i only have really basic knowledge of how to transfer and when to use them when it comes to flights, esp biz/first class. IIRC you were the lucky AA million mile winner too? have a great trip!

2

u/chrumbles Jan 10 '22

it's like catching a fish, awesome feeling.

2

u/rockyqintou Jan 10 '22

What were you eyeing?!

9

u/[deleted] Jan 10 '22

[deleted]

2

u/rockyqintou Jan 10 '22

Ah nice, Hope you enjoy it!

→ More replies