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Photo by Karl Baron

Does the concept of points, miles, frequent flyer passes, and rewards make you feel like you need an undergraduate degree in Frequent Flying to figure it all out? Lucky for you, we’ve got the inside scoop.

A life of a frequent flyer can have its ups and downs (no pun intended). There’s a saying that goes: “travelling makes a man wiser, but not happy.” Word to the wise, a flight is much more enjoyable when you can save money and pick up bonuses along the way.

In recent years, mile points can be rewarded by using co-branded credit and debit cards. Acquired miles can even be redeemed for some fantastic bonuses, including free air travel, airport lounge access, priority check-in and travel class upgrades.

A flight is much more enjoyable when you can save money and pick up bonuses along the way

We’ve searched high and low to find the most exclusive frequent flyer forums with tips on offers and deals, the hottest sites with the freshest news on how to maximize airline points, and we’ve even found a list of like-minded “mileage junkies” to share their own personal tips. Read on to discover how to make yourself even more travel savvy.

Blogs & Websites

Frequent Flyer websites are a great way to keep on top of all the great offers out there in order to maximize air miles and earn bonuses aplenty. They are usually managed by top experts and those with insight into the airline industry. Blogs can also give frequent flyers access to top tips and even a chance to read tales and anecdotes from fellow frequent flyers. It’s like a VIP club, and only the determined make it out alive.

Here are some features of the best sites and blogs to get you started.

1. Frequent Flyer Miles

  • Provides a frequent flyer program award mileage comparison table, purchasing miles charts, news on which credit cards offer the most points, and airline alliance charts.
  • Gives out information on how to reach “elite status” across all major airlines, which can allow the flyer to have priority check in and discounted first class flights. You don’t need to be a millionaire to have luxury, you just need to use your brain.

Photo by Larry Johnson

2. Frequent Flyer Bonuses

  • This blog was created by Canadian entrepreneur Patrick Sojka, a travel rewards specialist.
  • Features “pick of the week,” which gives the inside scoop on how to top up on points.

3. Boarding Area

  • Offers handy news about the latest rewards for frequent flyers.
  • Updates on which companies are currently offering frequent flyer bonuses, and which may be discontinuing their offers.
  • Features mini blogs from frequent flyers themselves who share stories and humorous anecdotes about the life of a frequent flyer. In other words, the kind of people we secretly hate for making it all look easy.

4. Frequent Flier

  • A premier site for the frequent flyer, which focuses on urgent breaking news such as limited time offers.
  • Features “The Frequent Flyer Crier” newsletter so members can keep on top of news and deals. Hear ye, hear ye. Read all about it.
  • Useful section devoted to freebies and sweepstakes.

5. Smarter Travel

  • Interesting articles such as “ten worst travel rip-offs” and revealing interviews with experts.
  • Provides resources for frequent flyers by bookmarking companies which currently offer deals when purchasing air miles.

6. Web Flyer

  • Online newsletter linked to the site InsideFlyer.
  • Alternates between frequent flyer program topics one week and general travel content the next week.

Photo by Darren Mak

7. Mileage Manager

  • Allows members to have a complete online source to manage their frequent flyer points.
  • Provides members with a personal record of their air mileage and shows airline expiration dates.
  • Important news and notifications automatically sent via email.

8. Points

  • Purchase, convert, trade and redeem airline points and rewards through major airlines such as Air Canada and Priority.

9. Inside Flyer

  • An online magazine jam-packed with articles containing tips and resources to maximize frequent flyer points.
  • Compare credit cards related to air miles and a mileage converter.

10. The Points Guy

  • A personal account and a must-see for frequent flyers.
  • Posts on industry news, travel deals and reviews of the major airline, hotel and credit card loyalty programs.

11. The Art of Non-Conformity

  • Chris Guillebeau is a frequent flyer ninja with endless tips for helping readers accumulate free air miles.
  • His Frequent Flyer Master Guide promises you can earn up to 200,000 frequent flyer miles a year without even going anywhere.
Forums

The great thing about forums is that they can create an entire community of people with common goals: earning points, and boarding planes (or getting cool stuff). These are places fellow frequent flyers can chat about their own experiences and offer hot tips, kinda like a support group for travel addicts.

Here are a list of some forums with their selling points.

12. Flyer Talk

  • The biggest online forum for frequent flyers. Sometimes, size matters.
  • Topics range from opinions on the best airlines to baggage allowance and top hotels around the globe.
  • Members post photos of their travels, chat live on the site and, even better, share their tips on maximizing points.

13. ITYT

  • An online community of so-called mileage junkies, with hundreds of subsections allowing members to indulge in tale and tip sharing. Do you eat, dream and sleep mileage? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Someone can help.
  • Lists the top airlines and gives members a chance to share their opinions on the programs’ deals.

14. Frequent Flier Forums

  • One of the most popular forums for travellers.
  • Regarded as a more intimate, relaxed community. The nude beach of all frequent flier forums, if you will.

15. Australian Frequent Flyer

  • A forum aimed primarily at Australian frequent flyers. Don’t worry, you won’t be executed if you’re not from Oz (maybe just laughed at behind your back).
  • Shares knowledge not just from top Aussie airlines such as Qantas, but gives members the chance to discuss their globetrotting antics.
Online interviews with frequent flyers

For a “straight from the horse’s mouth” account, have a look at these interviews with globe trotters who make flying more of a lifestyle than a necessity.

16. Interview With Brett From The Cranky Flier

  • Brett describes himself as an airline “dork” and writes his own consumer air travel blog, The Cranky Flier.
  • Brett has work experience with several airlines in revenue management, marketing and strategy, so he knows what he’s talking about.

17. How Stuff Works: What are the best frequent flyer programs?

  • Alfonso Javier, material trainer, educational consultant and frequent flyer, talks about his valuable take on the best frequent flyer programmes.
  • Tim Winship, editor of FrequentFlyer.com also gives his own advice.

18. Jaunted: “The Points Guy” Shares His Secrets for Maximum Frequent Flyer Miles

  • The so-called “points guy,” Brian Kelly, is interviewed and sheds light on his site.

19. Ask Mr. Credit Card

  • Frequent flyer aficionado and credit card point professional, Jason Steele is the self-titled Mr Credit Card, and the name is actually well deserved. Jason comes from a long line of credit card point hustlers and has hundreds of tips and ideas to help you really work the system. No worries. It’s all legal.

COMMUNITY CONNECTION

Feeling overwhelmed by what to do and how to actually use this wealth of resources? We have an expert on hand. Jason Steele of Ask Mr Credit Card has opened his doors for questions. Ask him anything and everything that confounds you about how to get the most out of your credit card and frequent flyer points and find your way closer to discounted, upgraded and free travel.

Send all your questions to leigh@matadornetwork.com or leave them in the comments below, and we will pass them along to Jason and post his responses here on Matador Life.

Financial Savvy

 

About The Author

David Boyd

David Boyd writes for Frequent Flyer Credit Cards, an Australian comparison service dedicated to helping frequent flyers find a card that boosts their mileage earning potential.

  • Worldtraveller2

    you forgot the one and only . . . frugaltravelguy.blogspot.com love him!

    • http://www.travelfreefaster.com Tim

      Add one more to the list…. TravelFreeFaster.com
      This site provides a list of all major airline and hotel frequent flyer mile, hotel point and rental car promotions. It’s a good one!

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