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Sharing Potentially Dead-End Offers

Sharing Potentially Dead-End Offers

Million Mile SecretsSharing Potentially Dead-End OffersMillion Mile Secrets Team

We devote thousands of hours of research to help you get Big Travel with Small Money. You support us by signing-up for credit cards through partner links which earn us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

 

Yesterday, the Sheraton Madison was offering 3,000 SPG points for “liking” them on Facebook and sharing it with your friends on your Facebook wall.  This was posted on FlyerTalk and MilePoint and One Mile At At a Time and The Points Guy blogged about it too.

Sheraton Madison - Facebook Like

In case you don’t use Facebook and are wondering, “liking” something on Facebook is officially defined as to “give positive feedback and connect with things you care about.”  You do this by clicking on the “like” button (the thumbs-up image) in Facebook.

The terms and conditions for this promotion indicated that the offer was valid only in June and only open to Wisconsin residents.  It turns out that a few people were successful in liking the Sheraton Madison, but the deal was pulled very quickly.

On Wednesday, the Four Points in Chicago was offering 1,000 SPG points for liking them on Facebook and spamming sharing with your friends.  This offer died in a few hours

And about a week before that, the Westin Charlotte was offering 1,000 SPG points for anyone who posted a travel picture on Facebook and got 50 likes. Folks on FlyerTalk uploaded pictures and included “ft” in the caption so that others could vote for their picture and everyone would get the miles!

As expected, the Westin Charlotte pulled the promotion early and Lucky complained (rightly so, in my opinion) that the Westin Charlotte was taking the low road by changing the terms of the deal.

My Dilemma

I knew about these promotions either through FlyerTalk, MilePoint or other bloggers, but I didn’t post them on Million Mile Secrets.  Nor did I *gasp* participate in them myself!

I didn’t think that these promotions would last long enough to provide value to readers, because the sponsors would pull the promotion once they realized that their promotions were unknowingly lucrative to others.

If you had  signed-up for the promotion, you would have had to follow-up to get your promised points (if you got them at all).  Or you would have been frustrated and angry when the promotion was pulled sooner than expected.

It turns out that you would have got some points if you had got into the promo early.

What should I do?

But perhaps I should have posted about these promotions, and let you the reader, decide whether to take part or not.

Should I be verifying that each deal works before posting on the blog, or should I just be sharing information about mile and point earning opportunities – even if some of those turn out to be false?  Or potentially harmful to you?  And let you decide if you want to take part or not?

For example, I know of an offer to earn 100 free AAdvantage miles by signing up for daily emails from a shopping website.

But I haven’t posted about it because:

  • I didn’t receive any confirmation that I would earn 100 AA miles when I signed-up
  • The company is not listed as an official American Airlines partner and
  • Perhaps most worryingly, the domain name for the company was registered just a few months ago.

All these little discrepancies make me suspicious of the legitimacy of the offer.

It is okay if I submitted my email address to a spammers list, but I don’t want to take a chance with your email address!

On the other hand, I could be completely wrong (I often am!) about this, and could be preventing you from earning an extra 100 American Airline miles.

So what should I do?  Share every bit of information that I find?  Or verify it and perform a reasonable amount of diligence before posting so that you read about only the surefire ways to have Big Travel with Small Money?

 

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Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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I think you should only share the best and most lucrative offers which mostly have to do with credit card applications and minimum spending techniques. I am personally dredding getting spammed by AA for getting my email “appraised” and now I wish I had given AA a fake email address. I think my time would be better utilized waiting for the next big 75K/150AA score instead of getting 3K or 100 miles or 1000 SPG points as described on Lucky’s blog. I also unliked the hotels after I realized that they were not giving me any points. BTW one thing I found on Lucky’s blog is super good award inventory on AA from a BOS CDG routing on AA metal throughout the summer. Makes sense to connect in BOS as a final North American Gateway if one wants to get to Europe.

Author
Million Mile Secrets

@mike – Thanks for sharing! We should have set up separate email accounts for this type of promotion, though I just let mine go to a separate folder. Thanks for the tip on the BOS – CDG availability!

Hi Darius,

It sounds like most folks that have commented, like to be made aware of all offers. I disagree.

One of the things I value most about you, is your experience, and your “gut intuition”. I trust your gut, on the risk/reward payoff of a deal. If you think a deal is worthy, and it passes your criteria, based on your valuable experience, I think you should share it. If not, please don’t. Don’t just share it and disclaim it. That just wastes my time.

I could waste hours slogging through FT threads, if I was looking for every potential offer. There are other blogs for that. I value you, for your ability to filter out the chaff, save me time, and just bring the good stuff.

Let other blogs be crap-o-ramas of already expired or sketchy deals. I appreciate you, because most of your posts are valuable to me, and don’t waste my time.

Author
Million Mile Secrets

@Ed – Chase has become very strict in allowing you to collect the sign-up bonus only once per card. If I do mention questionable deals, I’ll be sure to disclaim.

@Harold – I like the idea of not wasting too much time writing about the questionable deals and concentrating on other topics instead!

@Ofer – If I do write about them, I’ll be sure to keep it short and warn about the potential pitfalls!

@SH – I agree – I won’t spend too much time on them, if at all.

@worldtraveller2 – Is “Potentially Dead-End Deal” catchy enough?! I like your idea about keeping it short and simple.

@david – You can’t earn points for making payments on a credit card. But you could add your children to your new credit cards as additional users, so all their charges would appear on your credit card and you would earn the points. Depending on how much they charge, this could be a VERY expensive way to earn points!

@Jade – You can be rest assured that the Amazon Payments discussion, will NOT cause me to censor my postings. I’ll mention all lucrative mile and point earning opportunities on the blog. The issue for me is whether I want to waste reader’s time with deals which may not work.

@Chris – I appreciate your candor! If I do post about potential dead-end deals, I’ll try to keep it short and mention it upfront so you don’t have to wade through it if you don’t want to.

I’m not sure what you are worried about, Darius. Most of us have participated in enough promotions to realize and accept that any promotion may be of limited time, and may be pulled at any point by the company. I can think of several recent examples of companies retracting/expiring deals early: 1) the Chase Sapphire Preferred extra 50K points 2) Spafinder 40 miles/$ , and the examples you posted here. I doubt that any of your readers would be angry with you, rather than the company, when it’s the company that is retracting the offer.

You seem like a good man, and your readers trust your gut instincts when you filter through all the offers you encounter on FT, FW, or other travel blogs and decide what to post here. (p.s. I hope the outcry in response to the Amzn payments post didn’t cause this second-guessing regarding what you repost from other sites??)

Darius

I like the information regarding points or miles earned by a simple click such as liking a hotel. I’ve been wondering how I was going to earn the additional 15ooo Points with SPG to receive the Bonus award that came with the card issuance . I don’t belong to FaceBook but would join with minimal personal information to qualify for such points. As an aside, I wonder if there is a way to earn points when making payment on my children’s overly large–out of control credit card bills? Thanks for all the helpful tips.

worldtraveller2

Darius

I think you should post them.* but come up with a catchy phrase in a particular font and color that you use every time something like this comes along. Always use that heading, do a quick little blurb about it with YMMV. You really never know how long these things will last or what time each reader happens to be checking your blog when they do. I personally want to know about everyone of them, and then make the decision of whether to do it or not. I agree with the other reader that most of us are constantly checking ALL known websites with airline/hotel point related info.

ps I like it that you have outlined a lot of the more “hidden” secrets that takes us months and months of searching in order to find. Keep up the good work!

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