Mileage run

At the end of a calendar year, take a low cost flight to the farthest destination to requalifyfor an additional year if you are close but don't have enough miles/points to maintain your status. For a business traveler this is worth it especially when needing to get bumped up on the standby list.

Mattress run

Same idea but for hotel programs. I’ve been known to pay for a low cost hotel in a programs chain without even staying there at year’s end just earn the stay credit. Traveling a lot during the year and getting room upgrades all year long are definitely worth the effort.

Status match

Sometimes major loyalty programs will match your status from another competing program hoping that you will continue to be loyal to them.


AA does an unwritten ‘challenge’ of 5,000 elite qualifying points (Gold) and 10,000 elite qualifying points (Platinum) flown in a 90 day period. I flew one international flight and a first class flight from LAX to AUX and did this with 2 flights (Platinum)

Get there faster

Be sure to sign up for your favorite loyalty program’s reward credit card to help achieve your goals quicker.

Double dip

In order to ‘double dip’ your points, pay to refill the balance on your Starbucks loyalty card with a rewards credit card

Take time

Arrive at the airport extra early when traveling on a Monday morning which can be the busiest travel times for most airports, don’t think having status will save you time because this is when all of the elites come out and sometimes the elite line is longer that the regular line.

Talk it out

Join a forum such as or to learn how to maximize your point earning potential.

Know the route

Vegas Tip #1: When arriving, never let a cabbie take you to your hotel via the ‘tunnel’, this is known as ‘long hauling’ and if mentioned will get you a reduced fare as it is illegal. Long hauling typically adds up to $20 or more to your fare. Best to tell the cabbie to take Tropicana to Koval which hits most hotels on the back way and also avoids the Las Vegas strip which can get busy.

Skip the line

Vegas Tip #2: When flying Southwest and leaving Vegas on a Sunday, its best to opt for the early boarding fare, the extra $15 is worth it when security lines can stretch for over an hour.