Guests Posts

Here are all the guest posts I've commissioned on Hack My Trip.

Do We Always Have To Earn and Burn?


"Look at all those naive folks out there with their slow building mileage balances and run of the mill credit profiles," say the Conventional Wisdomers. "They save up their frequent flyer points over years and years to take that big trip of their lives, and then just before they're going to make the redemption.... wham! A devaluation! Earn and burn, people! Earn and burn!" "Earn and burn!" is … [Read more...]

Respect the Unloved Standard Award Redemption

Featured Standard Awards

"I've got to get from Los Angeles to New York this upcoming Friday and then back by Sunday because my buddy just told me he got us tickets to see the Islanders in Game 7 of their playoff series!" Clearly this is a fictional and highly implausible scenario, as it has the words "Islanders" and "playoffs" together in the same sentence. But it's going to serve as our example to explore some … [Read more...]

App-O-Ramas Are Your Father’s Oldsmobile


The term "app-o-rama" is a familiar one to miles and points junkies. In short, app-o-ramas involve applying for multiple credit products (usually credit cards) as close to each other as possible, ideally within a few hours or even a few minutes. App-o-ramas appear to have originated with our compatriots over at FatWallet, who started experimenting with the concept a decade … [Read more...]

Katherine Reviews Virgin America (plus a 15% Discount!)

Virgin America Cabin Lighting

Hello everyone! I'm Scottrick's favorite little sister, here to do another post. This time I'm reviewing Virgin America. I don't travel as often as Scott, so while I do participate in some points programs, I'm not doing mileage runs or long-distance flights. I go for the cheapest way to get where I have to go, and only spring for a nicer plane or better airline if it's not too much more … [Read more...]

From Booking to Arrival: A Guide to Airbnb

Thanks to Angie from NerdWallet for today's post expanding on how to use Airbnb to book apartments, homes, or just an extra room as an alternative to traditional hotel stays. Eric surveyed Airbnb and similar services like Couchsurfing and VRBO last week, but Angie volunteered to go into more detail on this particular option. Airbnb -- the popular short-term travel site -- has been in the press … [Read more...]

Finding a Place to Stay When Hotels Don’t Make Sense


Big thanks to Eric B. for today's post! I've used VRBO a few times, but I'm not a regular customer of this or other alternative resources for finding a place to stay. He kindly volunteered to share some of his experiences. My name is Eric and like Scott I'm an avid fan of points and miles, but I'm writing today to talk about some lesser-known options for lodging that are often overlooked by our … [Read more...]

Visiting Machu Picchu (Part III: Visiting the Ruins of Machu Picchu)

Machu Picchu at 6AM.

Check out Part I: Advance Preparation and Part II: Getting There Buses for Machu Picchu begin departing as early as 5AM (and for this reason, some restaurants begin serving breakfast as early as 4:30). Taking the first bus is unnecessary: the trip is about twenty minutes and the gates don't open until 6AM. By getting on the ~5:30 buses, we were able to get to the gates just before the park … [Read more...]