The world of travel credit cards and points is complicated, confusing, overwhelming and completely worth it. I get asked a lot of questions about how I utilize membership points, but what most people don't understand is that it takes a ton of time and effort and more than five minutes to explain. My husband and I traveled for years without ever utilizing a single travel credit card and it wasn't until a few years ago that we realized how utterly insane that was and jumped on the travel credit card bandwagon. In the last three years, we've accumulated nearly 1 million membership points and haven't paid for a flight since. Now we don't exactly trace for free mainly because we enjoy high end places that often cost more than points, but the discounts, perks and free flights have truly changed our travel life.
My very good friend and travel point guru, Nate Ritter, recently put together a completely free online course for newbies who want to travel for free, but don't know how called How to Get to Europe and Stay For Free. A couple years ago as I was starting to get into travel credit cards, Nate and I sat down at his kitchen table and shared our secrets on how to efficiently utilize credit cards to maximize travel. His course literally takes you through all the points we discussed that day and helps beginners navigate themselves to free flights and hotel stays as simply and straight forward as possible. I follow all of his tips to this day and have taught many people his methods.
While you do need to sign up for an account to access the course, it's free and easy to do and you won't get bombarded with spam emails - it's literally just to track who is accessing the site. Also keep in mind that this is just the beginning of what it means to use travel points for free travel, but it is exactly what beginners need to get started without being overwhelmed with too much advanced details. I'm looking forward to Nate's next course that will take those skills to the next level. Good luck and happy travels!