Treats: Our Favorite Tricks for Big Travel With Small Money!

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We love sharing secrets and strategies to help y’all achieve your travel goals.

So this Halloween, the Million Mile Secrets team put together some of our favorite tricks, including ways to score free treats, like hotel room upgrades!

Treats Our Favorite Tricks For Big Travel With Small Money
Learn Tricks From the Million Mile Secrets Team, so You Can Treat Yourself to Big Travel!

We’d love to hear your favorite tricks for Big Travel treats in the comments too!

5 Travel & Money Saving Tricks From the Million Mile Secrets Team!

1.   Don’t Get Spooked by Minimum Spending Requirements

The quickest way to get Big Travel with Small Money is to earn lucrative credit card sign-up bonuses.  Most offers require you to spend a certain amount in a set timeframe.  If you don’t have lots of monthly bills, the requirements can seem overwhelming if you’re new to miles & points.

Million Mile Secrets team member Harlan has a trick for meeting minimum spending requirements in ~1 minute.  Just use Plastiq to pay monthly bills which don’t normally accept credit cards, like rent, utilities, mortgages, and HOA fees.

You’ll pay a 2.5% convenience fee to use Plastiq.  But Harlan thinks its totally worth it because you can unlock valuable sign-up bonus much quicker!

Treats Our Favorite Tricks For Big Travel With Small Money
Million Mile Secrets Team Member Harlan Loves to Use Plastiq to Quickly Earn New Card Sign-Up Bonuses. So He Can Enjoy Big Travel to Places Like Glacier National Park in Montana!

And Harlan tries to time his card applications so the new card arrives a few days before monthly bills are due.  Then, he sets up payments on Plastiq and earns the new card sign-up bonus right after the 1st billing cycle closes!

For even more ideas on unlocking big sign-up bonuses, check out our post with 40+ ways to meet minimum spending requirements.

2.   Sweeten Your Everyday Purchases With Extra Rewards

Emily and team members Keith, Jason, and Meghan love to shop online through a cash back or miles & points portal.

This one extra step can make internet purchases much more rewarding…even when you’re booking travel!  And you can check Cashback Monitor and Evreward to quickly find the best shopping portal for your purchase.

Team members Keith and Meghan prefer TopCashback.  Over the past year, Meghan has earned hundreds of dollars through TopCashback on purchases she was making anyways!

Treats Our Favorite Tricks For Big Travel With Small Money
Go to TopCashback Before Making Your Online Purchases or Travel Bookings and the Savings Can Really Add Up!

Emily’s favorite is the Chase Ultimate Rewards shopping portal, where she can earn valuable and flexible points that she can transfer to airline and hotel partners, like United Airlines and Hyatt!

3.   Make the Most of FREE Hotel Treats!

Team member Scott says “Boooooo!” (sorry, had to do it!) to hotels that require Triple Red Diamond Rhodium Globetrotterist Status just for a bottle of water when you check-in.

He prefers to book hotel chains with free treats like breakfast, Wi-Fi, and a fitness center.  He’s enjoyed pleasant experiences at IHG’s Staybridge Suites, which include free hot breakfast and free happy hour food and drinks.  Scott also likes Hampton Inn by Hilton because they offer similar perks.

Treats Our Favorite Tricks For Big Travel With Small Money
Free Hot Breakfast Is a Nice Treat, Which Is Why Team Member Scott Likes to Book Stays at Hotels Like Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton!

4.   Beware of Scary Fees and Familiarize Yourself With Workarounds

No one likes to pay pesky fees for award booking changes or cancellations.  That’s one reason I love Southwest.  Because you’ll never pay fees to change or cancel ANY flight!

While the American Airlines award booking cancellation policy isn’t as generous as Southwest, there’s a trick that might be helpful for some folks.

If you use miles to book award flights for multiple passengers, you’ll pay a $150 fee to cancel the 1st award ticket.  But you’ll pay just $25 per ticket (instead of $150)  to cancel award flights for additional passengers on your reservation.

Treats Our Favorite Tricks For Big Travel With Small Money
The Reduced Award Booking Cancellation Fee Can Help Folks Who Book Award Flights for Multiple Passengers

5.   Hocus-Pocus Strategy for Hotel Room Upgrades

Ever wonder what magic is required to get a hotel room upgrade?

Simply calling the hotel before your arrival and politely requesting an upgrade is contributor’s Chris’s trick.

It might not work every time, but it helped get Chris a Junior Suite at the highly-rated Park Hyatt Washington D.C.

Treats Our Favorite Tricks For Big Travel With Small Money
Treat Yourself to a Spacious Hotel Suite! Simply Call Ahead Before Your Arrival to Request an Upgrade!

Don’t forget, certain credit cards get you automatic hotel elite status.  This is another way to increase your chances of securing a room upgrade!

Bottom Line

You’re never too old to trick-or-treat for some travel or money saving secrets!  So the Million Mile Secrets team put together a few our favorite tricks!

It’s easier to unlock valuable credit card sign-up bonuses using Plastiq to pay monthly bills which don’t normally accept credit cards, like rent, utilities, and mortgages.  Or you can earn rewards on purchases you’re making anyways by shopping through a shopping portal, like TopCashback!

Team member Scott prefers tasty treats!  That’s why he books hotel chains with free breakfast, like Hampton Inn by Hilton.

Happy Halloween from the Million Mile Secrets team! 🎃

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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