The Best Credit Card to Earn the Most Travel Rewards

The Best Credit Card to Earn the Most Travel Rewards

Roughly a year before our global departure, I began doing a lot of research, focusing on which credit cards, airlines, hotels and rental-car companies offered the best loyalty programs with the most perks. Then, I registered for these top programs and started earning points on every dollar I spent and each vacation I took. It was surprising how quickly points accumulated once I began to understand this simple system.

Kim and I rolled all of our monthly expenditures—like utilities, groceries, gas and other big-ticket purchases—into one airline-specific credit card and one hotel-specific credit card to help us earn enough points to kick start our year-long adventure in style – with three free international business-class flights and enough extra points for a few short haul flights later in our journey (and more than 20 free hotel nights). Throughout our travels, we continued to build on those rewards by accumulating more points for all our flights, hotel stays and credit card expenditures while on the road. This methodology is how you will create wealth by establishing mindfully selected alliances.

Choose credit cards that offer the most points for purchases and offer the greatest travel benefits such as point bonuses, cheaper redemption options for reward travel, airport lounge access, hotel upgrades, automatic elite status with partner airlines and the ability to earn higher-level elite status through dollars spent. At the time of our travels, we selected the United Presidential Plus (no longer available) and Marriott Bonvoy credit cards to accelerate our point earnings.

Want to travel in style for FREE? If you are just beginning your travel planning, I would highly suggest getting one or both of the following cards – Marriott BonVoy and United Mileage Plus. Since BonVoy is now the biggest hotel brand in the world (Marriott acquired SPG and Hyatt as well), and United is part of the largest airline partnership worldwide (Star Alliance), getting the amazing bonuses offered to sign up for these cards is a NO-BRAINER. If you click on the links below, you can choose one of two BonVoy Cards (both built to maximize your free nights and status) and you can choose one of four United Clubs to earn miles galore and get you to far off destinations more quickly. If you have questions about which credit card is best for YOU, contact me for a free call, TODAY.

Establishing a Daily Travel Budget

Establishing a Daily Travel Budget

During the one year that the Goyette family vagabonded around the globe, we took 47 flights, slept in 87 different accommodations, engaged in stellar, blow-your-mind experiences, and returned to the United States with absolutely ZERO debt.

“How is that possible?” you ask.

It’s possible because we are the type of family that only spends money we actually possess.

“Well, then you must have been staying in low-end hostels and found cheap airline tickets smooshed in the back of the plane near the toilet,” you say.

My response to that is, “First-class baby, (almost) all the way!”

We lived like royalty while we were traveling.  In most cases, we had a much better quality of life than back in the States. We stayed in deluxe hotels at beachfront properties and the classiest Airbnbs in downtown cities.  We had the luxury of flying business or first class for the majority of our flights.  We dined on the finest cuisine and indulged in gourmet food from every culture.  We did once-in-a-lifetime activities like exploring the Pyramids in Egypt, bathing elephants in Thailand, feasting on an epicurean picnic at the base of the Torres del Paine mountains in Patagonia, and jaunting off on a helicopter to go blue-whale-watching in Sri Lanka.  We would never have been able to afford these incredible experiences abroad if we were living at home in the United States.

Moreover, we did it all on a budget of $60 per day for food and $60 per day for accommodations.  Unbelievable, right?  Our daily travel budget was so much cheaper than our daily living expenditures back in Austin.

When you establish your daily spending budget for your adventure, it does not mean you need to spend that exact amount every day.  Leaving a little wiggle room will allow you to save some money one day so you can splurge on another day.  For example, we stayed in a cheaper apartment for a week in Santiago so we could enjoy more extravagant accommodations when we were in Patagonia.

Another way to offset your daily cost of living is to get free breakfast and evening Hors d’oeuvres at hotels (due to having elite status).  This provides an opportunity to shift your daily spending dollars to save up for special experiences.  Remember, if you meet your total monthly budget, it does not matter how you got there, so get creative.

Kim Goyette

Goyette Family