The Best Presentation at Frequent Traveler University Wasn’t Mine!

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Emily and I were at Frequent Traveler University over the weekend. We had a wonderful time chatting with readers and everyone who stopped by the Million Mile Secrets table!

The Million Mile Secrets Table

The Million Mile Secrets Table

This was the largest Frequent Traveler University ever and it went off very smoothly!  A big thank you to the organizers and everyone who helped make it a success!

Mommy Points and I presented an “Introduction to Miles & Points” in the morning.  I’ve presented similar versions of the presentation at previous conferences, so you shouldn’t attend the session if you’ve heard the presentation before.

It is very important to think about YOUR goals (not some random blogger’s goals!) and to set your ethical limits and time spent on the hobby before you dive in.  Miles and Points will consume you, so it is best to plan out what makes sense before you start collecting miles and points.

Here’s the Introduction to Miles & Points presentation.

Later, I gave a similar introduction to the (very) basics of miles and points credit cards.

Here’s the Introduction to Miles & Points Credit Cards presentation.

I didn’t attend all the sessions, but my favorite session was Rapid Travel Chai’s presentation on international travel.  Many middle aged men dream of sleek convertibles and boats, but I dream about traveling the world one weekend at a time!

Rapid Traveling

Rapid Traveling

If you’ve attended any miles and points conferences you may find this post by Points Summary funny!

And if you missed Frequent Traveler University, there will be another one in Tampa at the Grand Hyatt in Tampa, Florida from September 27 to September 29, 2013.  Tickets are available for $100, and rooms at the Grand Hyatt in Tampa start at $119 plus ~$15 in taxes.

And the Chicago Seminars will be from October 11 to 13, 2013 at the Holiday Inn Elk Grove.  Tickets cost $85 and the hotel costs ~$79 per night.  The complete schedule is posted here

Not only will you get some swag, but also the chance to yuk it up with like minded folks!

Conference Swag

Conference Swag

Emily and I look forward to seeing you at one of these events!

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26 responses to “The Best Presentation at Frequent Traveler University Wasn’t Mine!

  1. I was lucky enough to hear Stefan’s presentation. Perks/upgrades/lounges/deals are great but it’s really about travelling and seeing the world. I loved that he flew to UAE for the weekend (coach) because that’s all the time he could spare. While his co-workers were heading home @ 5pm Friday he flew to Dubai, arrived Saturday night , rented a car, drove to all 7 emirates/principalities on Sunday and flew back to Atlanta Sunday night. It wasn’t boasting, it was about travelling. No wonder Rapidtravelchaiblog is a must-read for a lot of us.

  2. All this time I had been mispronouncing your name Dare-ee-us. Is it a spelling variation on the Persian King Darius? Or probably the same if spelled in the original Persian/Arabic alphabet. Those were nice shopping bags you gave away, very generous of you!

  3. @ Acker, if it wasn’t about boasting, why mention it?
    The skill to keep information to yourself is a losing artform.

  4. Lots of bags you guys got there. Great slide show presentation also.

  5. You guys look like a celebrity couple! You both definitely are the best looking and good hearted couple! Now that’s a rare combo! 🙂

  6. You guys are a class act. The swag bags were definitely creative and keep up the good work!

  7. I hope i get to come to the event some day! You have inspired me so much 🙂

  8. Excellent! I wish I couldve been there this time…but couldn’t make it. btw Dariaus…those bags are used for groceries and its nice to see the clerks go” hey! that’s that one kid with the tuxedo blogging about credit card points! hehehe no joke

  9. Robert Hanson

    Don’t get me wrong, I love to travel. But unless the weekend coach, {coach!}, trip to UAE was the final mileage run to qualify for Ex Plat, especially if booked on a $12 mistake fare, I think this implies the need for a 12 step program more than it implies being a travel genius.

    I hope he took lots of pictures, because the jet lagged memories are going to be a blur.
    If it’s 1:47 pm, this must be Emirate number 4, wave as you drive by….

  10. Huge win for you wearing a tuxedo. If you can, always wear a tuxedo.

    I wear a suit while traveling just for the treatment you receive.

  11. Are there ever any events in Denver?

    • @Acker – Ideally I’d use the perks and deals to travel and see the world!

      @Tara @ Miles To The Wild – It is a variation of the Persian name (My parents added the extra “a”)

      @Dave @Diana @Jana @ 365 Hand Lettering Project – Thanks!

      @Jamison @ Points Summary – Thanks and it was nice to see you again!

      @Ozaer N. – Ha! That’s funny!

      @Robert Hanson @Kent C – Different styles of travel for different folks and age certainly factors into it. I don’t mind doing 4 different cities in 4 days, but Emily would rather do 1 city in 4 (or more) days. My perspective is that you have a limited amount of time and her perspective is that you won’t really see anything in 1 day and it is too rushed.

      @wtfci – It wasn’t a tux, but a sports jacket, trousers, and bow-tie. I’ve noticed that wearing a suit does change how people perceive you (though it does mean more negotiating at car dealerships!)

      @Ken – There are none planned for Denver (as yet), but the next event is in Chicago and Tampa.

  12. Agree with Robert Hanson….then again,
    I’d rather sit at home for 2 days if that’s all I got, play with the kids, not drive or fly anywhere if possible, recuperate from work. Then again I’m married with 2 kids and 47 years old, so minimum I need is 4 days away, longer if further away. That being said if I was single and younger, why not take off for the weekend. You got the energy and no responsibilites. Plus 20 years later you’ll remember that weekend and not sitting at home. LOL. Ah the days of driving 6 hours to Vegas and back in one night with no sleep and too many drinks. Youth. Do that today, and I’d pass out before even getting in the car.

  13. ABC,
    Stefan wasn’t boasting about his travels. He loves to travel, squeezes in trips when and however he can, and makes the most of his time. Do I think he has status? Yeah, but so what? If you heard him talk I bet you’d understand. Most of the audience got it – as nice as it is to fly first, get hotel upgrades, and accrue miles the real reward is seeing the world – and if he only has a weekend to travel, well, then he’ll pack as much into 72 hrs as he can. Not for a second did I think he did these weekends regularly. It was refreshing to have the focus off gaming the credit card/vanilla card/status card system and back on the pleasure of visiting interesting countries, even when there’s no Hyatt/Hilton/IC/lounge in site. Maybe we’re so used to outdoing each other that we lose site of what it’s really about – seeing the world.

  14. What do you recommend, Tampa or Chicago?

  15. I might try and catch the Tampa FTU. A good topic to cover would be the BRG for the different hotels.

  16. goals^n^dreams

    Love your power point! How can I download your power point? I would like to save it in my comp.

    • @Jorge – Whichever works better for your schedule and is easier to get to. I’ll be at both!

      @Lively – I’ll pass that along to the organizer.

      @goals^n^dreams – Email me and I’ll send you a copy.

  17. @Robert Hanson, @ABC – I originally had nothing in the presentation about me, and then I decided that without introducing myself the rest would have no context. I enjoy the way I travel. I would enjoy even more to have more time, but I still would challenge myself on tight itineraries and physically taxing trips because that is what excites me. I took that trip to UAE because the fares were fairly low due to Ramadan and I wanted to see UAE. I already had earned my elite status for the next year and that did not figure, and for that matter have never taken a mileage run which does not make sense for me as a use of time. I have vivid memories of all 7 Emirates, and that is what I wanted.

    I wrote the presentation to be applicable to international travel at any speed, highlighting tips and destinations. I do not think it is good to lay out every word on PowerPoint slides since they get too busy, but of course much is lost in context. I made clear in the presentation that all kinds of trips and speed can work, arguing that travelers seek out what is really unique in a place, for instance, not just any old beach but a really spectacular beach. Hopefully you got something useful from the slides beyond the biography.

  18. Hi Darius

    Are there groups or education sessions that teach how to create flight itinieries that reduce the excessive fuel charges for international travel? I have read about this but do not understand the process.

  19. This could be a stupid question 🙂

    Does Emily adjust her hairstyle on the presentation days to suit the girl in the logo (or may be, viceversa).
    I am just randomly noticing that this hair-do is exclusive to presentations? 🙂

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  21. Slide number 20 of your presentation should say “priceless” instead of $5,000.00!

    By the way, I love your blog.

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