A travel hacker has demonstrated the degree to which dedication, knowledge – and plenty of credit cards – can gain you handsome airline rewards.
Dan Gillaspia, a lawyer, travel blogger and travel hacker does very well with airlines. “Travel hacker” doesn’t denote anything illegal – he’s just very tech-savvy and carries a few more credit cards than most of us.
“You may have seen articles floating around on social media about people (“travel hackers”) who take exotic trips around the world flying first class and staying in top-notch hotels, all while paying next-to-nothing,” he writes on his website, UponArriving.com.
“These stories all sound wayyy too good to be true, but I can assure you that it is definitely possible. And not only that, it’s really not that hard to do yourself.”
His website gives tips. It helps if you have quite a few credit cards. Gillaspia apparently has 45 of them. It also helps if you are adept at using spreadsheets.
Recently, Gillaspia’s know-how got him a USD 15,578 (AUD 20,578) luxury first-class suite on a Singapore Airlines flight from Tokyo to Singapore for only USD 130 (AUD 172).
Gillaspia and his partner Brad Darnell were both upgraded to the ultimate suite.
“The service from the first class crew was phenomenal and it really made the experience unforgettable,” Gillaspia writes in his blog.
“From the moment we stepped on the plane and were greeted by name (they even accurately pronounced my crazy last name) until we left the plane, we were treated like royalty. Whether it was something big or small, the staff was there to quickly see what they could do to help us out and always did with an amazingly positive attitude.”
Gillaspia used 100,000 miles from two credit cards. The USD 15,578 suite on Singapore Airlines only cost him USD 130 out of his pocket.
Gallaspia’s review, which must have delighted Singapore Airlines, can be read here.
Written by Peter Needham