Success! Black Sand Beaches, Ancient Jungles, and Mountain Top Vistas Made Reader Bob’s Hawaiian Babymoon a Photographers Dream!

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Success! Black Sand Beaches, Ancient Jungles, and Mountain Top Vistas Made Reader Bob’s Hawaiian Babymoon a Photographers Dream!

Million Mile SecretsSuccess! Black Sand Beaches, Ancient Jungles, and Mountain Top Vistas Made Reader Bob’s Hawaiian Babymoon a Photographers Dream!Million Mile Secrets Team

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Welcome to the next installment of our Reader Success Series where Million Mile Secrets Readers share how they booked a trip with miles & points to get Big Travel with Small Money!

Bob is our newest reader success story to show folks it’s possible to travel without spending a lot of money.

Bob C Success Story
Sunrise Above the Clouds.  We Woke up at 3 am to Get to Haleakala Summit in Maui, Which Has an Elevation of 10,000 feet.  It Was One of the Most Epic Sunrises I Have Ever Witnessed.

What’s your name and how long have you been involved in the miles & points hobby?

My name is Bob and I have been collecting miles & points since January of 2017.

It started when we were preparing for our wedding.  I really didn’t know anything about miles & points then.  We were paying everything with our debit card and with my 12 year old credit card that earns very little cash back.  I realized there must be a better incentive than cash back.

What was the goal of your trip?

My wife is 6 months pregnant, so I wanted to take her for a week long trip before our little one arrives.

I also wanted to take pregnancy photos of her while we were there.  Check out my Instagram to see more of my photos.  And take a look at a little video of our trip I put together!

 How long did you collect miles and points for your trip?

It took me ~6 months to earn enough points to cover this trip.  It didn’t take me too long to collect points, because I convinced my wife to get on board.  So we were able to combine our points together.

Which points did you save to take your trip?

For our round-trip flight to Hawaii, I saved British Airways Avios points because they have one of the lowest award prices for a main cabin seat to Hawaii.  I redeemed 25,000 British Airways Avios points per person per round-trip ticket.

Early Morning Walk with My Wife at the Ho’Omaluhia Botanical Garden.  Behind the Picture Is Where They Shot Most of the Jurassic Park Movies

My wife and I saved Chase Ultimate Rewards points for our hotel accommodations.

Which cards (max 5) would you recommend to open for a trip like yours?

How did you search and find the award flights?

I used Award Hacker to check for the lowest award redemption for a flight.  This led me to use British Airways Avios points.  I then used the airline’s website to look for a flight from Los Angeles to Honololu, then Kahului back to Los Angeles.  Using British Airways Avios, I booked tickets on partner American Airlines.

How did you find your hotel accommodations?

I couldn’t find any available award nights.  So I used the Chase Travel Portal to book our hotels.  It saved me hundreds because of the 1.5 cent per point value I got with my Chase Sapphire Reserve card.

Bob C Success Story
My Wife Enjoying the Black Sand Beach After a Zigzag Road to Hana.  We Rarely See Black Sand in California, so This Is Too Awesome for Us

What was the most challenging part about planning your trip? How did you solve it?

Trying to find hotel award nights was a nightmare.  I couldn’t find any available awards with major hotel chains in both islands where we stayed.  So I ended up booking rooms through the Chase Travel Portal.

Give us a few recommendations or tips for what to do at your destination.  Parks, restaurants, hidden gems, etc.

Oahu is very touristy, especially down in the Waikiki area.  So try to drive up to the North Shore and enjoy a better view and good Hawaiian food.

Bob C Success Story
Taking the Drone for a Quick Sunflower “Selfie With the Wifey.”  This Was in Maui.  We Passed by It on Our Way to the Beach.  Anyone Can Park Their Car on the Side of the Road and Walk in for Few Quick Photos

Kahuku Farms has the best organic Acai bowl in all of Oahu, if not the world.  Also, they offer a farm tour and you will see and learn a lot there.

Papa Ole’s Kitchen serves Hawaiian breakfast and a mouth watering lunch and dinner.

At the Tropical Macadamia Nut Farm you will have a chance to crack a macadamia nut yourself.

What did you learn about yourself on the trip?

I am a photo and video enthusiast, so I tend to forget how to fully enjoy the place.  This time, I was able to do both.  I would capture pictures, take aerial shots, record a few clips, and spend the rest of the time enjoying the scenery with my wife.

What would you say to folks looking to plan a similar trip?  Or to those who haven’t taken a miles & points trip yet!

It seemed like a very basic redemption, but it felt good taking a comfortable trip without spending so much.

Want to Share Your Story?

If you’d like to be considered for our reader success story series, please send me a note!  Emily and I would love to hear about how you travel with miles and points








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Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select
  • Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®

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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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Beautiful photos

I smell hate from Eric. Lets just be all happy. Nice redemption.

I think it depends on who you talk to nicely. I see a lot of people flying their drone and if you watch hawaii videos, they have tons of vlogs that have drone clips. Use your resourse and charm I suppose.

Um……the LAW > “charm” and “resource”. Just because people do it, never makes it right.

I went to Maui last year when there was sunflowers, cops pass by our cars so many times and didnt stop or say anything. Lots of other cars were park there too.

#1. It’s illegal to fly a drone on state or national parks….I see footage of both in this video.

#2. It’s NOT legal to park and look at the sunflowers, people do it, yes, but it’s not ok, the owners of the field are NOT happy about people tramping on their crop. Cops frequently pull up and write everyone trespass and illegal parking tickets.

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