Good afternoon everyone, I hope you all had a great New Years! With the beginning of the new year, I wanted to make a few travel resolutions for the coming year. Here are my 5 New Year’s travel resolutions for 2020. Feel free to share your own travel resolutions in the comments section.
1. Travel Somewhere Every Month
For the last several years, this has been my only travel resolution. It could be a short weekend trip, a road trip, a cross country trip, or a long international trip. I love to travel and take advantage of the 52 weekends every year (it helps that I work in San Francisco and can easily get to SFO or OAK in less than an hour). I’ve got the first 3 months of the year covered:
- January: Laura and I will do a short road trip down to Carmel / Monterey for a long weekend and use our Hyatt Free Night Certificates.
- February: I will fly down to Orange County for Super Bowl Weekend with my family and then we will make a second trip to Orange County for my cousin’s wedding.
- March: Laura and I are flying to Ireland for her Spring Break (she is an assistant principal). Check out my post How to Book Aer Lingus Award Tickets with British Airways Avios (Call BA to Save $100+ on Taxes & Fees).
There are a few other trips planned the rest of the year, so my first travel resolution should be accomplished. Here are the 4 other travel resolutions I have in mind for 2020:
2. Use American Express Airline Fee Credits (Without Buying Airline GCs / eGCs)
Thanks to my American Express Business Platinum Card, American Express Gold Card, and American Express Hilton Aspire Card, I have $550 in airline fee credits to use in 2020. For the $200 airline fee credit from my AMEX Biz Plat, I selected JetBlue and just paid $198 for 2 Even More Space Seats for an upcoming JetBlue redeye flight from SFO-BOS. For the remaining $350 in airline fee credits, I selected Alaska Airlines since Laura and I tend to fly Alaska Airlines often. I can use Chase Ultimate Rewards Points, Citi Thank You Points, or the Visa Infinite Discount Air Benefit to purchase basic economy flights and then “upgrade” to regular economy flights using the AMEX airline fee credits (“upgrade” means we can bring a carry on bag and select our seat assignments).
I also plan on using the $10 monthly dining credit from my AMEX Gold (I think I used it every month in 2019) along with the 2 $100 Dell credits every year on my AMEX Biz Plat.
3. Use my Caesars Rewards Diamond Elite Status for $100 Dining Credit and 2 Free Show Tickets
I was in Las Vegas last weekend for a short trip to visit my new niece, but I did have time to swing by Caesars Palace and pick up my Caesars Rewards Diamond Elite card. My membership is supposed to expire on January 31, but I was able to status match my Caesars Rewards Diamond Status back to Wyndham Rewards Diamond Status. Then on February 1, I plan on status matching my Wyndham Rewards Diamond Status back to Caesars Rewards Diamond Status to extend my Caesars Rewards Diamond Status through January 31, 2021. For more info, read this Middle Age Miles post.
4. Use Orphaned Airline Miles, Hotel Points & Amtrak Points
When you sign up for credit cards that offer high sign up bonuses, but you don’t have a use in mind (or there is an unexpected award program devaluation), you may end up with orphaned miles and points. In my case, all of these miles and points came from credit card sign up bonuses:
- 42K Korean Air SkyPass Miles – no clue
- 48K Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Miles – I think I can use these miles for Delta flights
- 75K Wyndham Rewards Points – I haven’t found a decent Wyndham Hotel, maybe a hotel in New York City this summer
- 23K Amtrak Guest Rewards Points – I plan on taking Amtrak Acela from Boston to New York Penn Station this summer
5. Reduce Credit Card Annual Fees
A few weeks ago, I wrote a post called I Paid $4,588 in Credit Card Annual Fees in 2019 & Was it Worth it? In that post, I looked at all the credit cards that Laura and I have and calculated the amount we paid in annual fees and the value we received from those annual fees. Thankfully, we get more value out of our credit cards than we pay in annual fees, but I am going to see if there are any credit cards that we can get rid of in 2020 to reduce our credit card annual fee expenses.
There you have it, those are my 5 travel resolutions for 2020. What do you think of my travel resolutions? Do you have your own travel resolutions? Please share them in the comments below. Have a great day everyone!