13 ways to maximize your future travel dreams during the COVID-19 pandemic
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While traveling has come to a halt during the coronavirus pandemic, and we’re spending our days at 凯发k8地址home following shelter in place orders, there’s no stopping us from wanderlust daydreams. In fact, now is the smart time to strategize for future vacations by boosting mileage earnings with airlines and stockpiling reward balances.
The great thing about airline mileage programs is there’s no need to leave the house to maximize earnings. While having a co-branded travel credit card generally multiplies the number of miles earned, it’s not a necessity and absolutely anyone with a reward program number can boost their mileage earnings through savvy planning.
Through everyday spending on shopping and services, mileage earners can use this time to collect bonus miles. When the travel world reopens, just think of where all those bonus miles could take you.
If you’re ready to stop dreaming and start planning for your family’s next vacation, scroll down and flip through the gallery above for 13 ways to maximize your airline mileage programs during quarantine.
1. Sign-up bonuses with travel rewards cards
While a cobranded travel credit card is not necessary to earn major miles, there are some tempting offers on the table right now worth a mention. Take the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card for example. The current welcome offer includes a 40,000-mile bonus on activating the card and a $100 statement credit. Even more attractive is the continual mileage earnings achieved through everyday spending, like earning twice the miles on supermarkets and restaurants. Card users can boost their mileage earnings through regular spending on everything from 凯发k8地址home office supplies to paying the monthly utility bill. Pay off your balance each month and those miles become a great asset when you return to traveling, as cardholders earn three times the miles on hotels and on Delta purchases. Platinum cardholders also receive a free checked bag, credit for pre-check of Global Entry, and a companion certificate each year upon card renewal.
If you prefer to fly with Alaska Airlines, look at their current bonus offer for the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature card. In addition to a $100 statement credit, new cardholders receive a 40,000-mile bonus upon activation and each year cardholders receive a companion fare ticket. Eligible Alaska Airlines purchases earn three times the miles, while everyday spending earns one bonus mile per dollar. Alaska Visa cardholders also receive a free checked bag, so this is another great card for travelers.
2. Bonus miles on everyday needs
There’s no need to have a co-branded credit card to earn bonus miles on everyday spending. As long as you have a mileage earning account, also known as a frequent flier number, there are plenty of ways to top up your mileage earnings even while sheltered in place. Here’s how: Instead of going directly to an online retailer website, use a mileage shopping portal to earn bonus miles at your favorite stores. Use your Alaska Airlines mileage plan number to shop through links at Mileage Plan Shopping to earn miles at Walgreens, Staples, JCPenney and more. Or sign in to Skymiles Shopping with your Delta mileage number to earn bonuses on everyday purchases at Target, Gap, Rite Aid and more. It doesn’t matter how you pay when you shop online, as long as you use the online portal with your mileage account number you will elevate your mileage earnings on each purchase.
3. Mileage bonuses on supermarkets and grocery delivery
Thinking of trying grocery delivery? Sign up for Safeway 凯发k8地址home delivery with Skymiles Shopping to earn a Delta Skymiles bonus. Stock up on essentials from Sam’s Club and earn bonus miles through the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Shopping portal. Or earn multiple miles by having Keurig coffee pods shipped to your 凯发k8地址home. In addition to mileage bonuses, keep an eye on additional discounts offered through these shopping portals.
4. Flexible cancellations with airlines
Whether you have emergency travel plans to make right now or simply want to grab a deal for future plans, there are some tempting airline offers to keep an eye on. Alaska Airlines fliers can earn 50% more elite-qualifying miles on flights until May 31, 2020. Alaska has also implemented increased flexibility with no change or cancellation fees on travel booked through May 31. Check their website regularly for cheap flight deals.
In addition to their new flexible change and cancellation policies, Delta has recently modified their flexible travel offerings by extending usage of travel credits for two full years. With all of these options, and access to greatly reduced flight pricing, it’s a good time to think about saving on upcoming travel plans.
5. Peace of mind cruise bookings
While a cruise may not be in your immediate future, it’s a perfect time to plan ahead thanks to incredible deals and flexible cancellation policies in place. Norwegian Cruise Line is currently promoting future sailings with $200 free onboard credit, free specialty dining and an open bar, and free excursions and WiFi, along with a Peace of Mind policy in place allowing easy cancellations and postponed travel. Carnival Cruises is currently offering two for one deposits, onboard credit, and free room upgrades in their latest promotions. Even planning for cruises next year and beyond can be beneficial now with up to 10,000 bonus miles earned on cruises booked through Delta’s Skymiles Cruises.
6. Bonus miles on future hotel bookings
Start putting your daydreams to work by booking hotels well in advance and reap the rewards with bonus airline miles. Book future hotel stays with Alaska’s hotel platform and earn between 250-10,000 airline miles per night. Or earn bonus miles on Delta’s hotel platform while also saving up to 55% off your stay. Be sure to select stays with free cancellation to maximize this opportunity.
7. Online wine delivery bonuses
Frequent Spirit flyer? Shop the Spirit Mall to earn three times the mileage bonus on wine purchases. Already have a Delta Skymiles credit card? Check your Amex Offers to save $20 on a $50 purchase from WineInsiders.com. Or sign into your Alaska Airlines shopping portal to save 30% off your first wine delivery through Winc Wines and earn a bonus of 1,400 miles.
8. Big bonuses on magazines and books
Running low on things to read? Sign in to your American Airlines Advantage shopping portal for discounts and three miles on the dollar at Books-A-Million. Earn 11 miles on the dollar buying magazines through the Alaska Airlines shopping portal.
9. Flower and gift delivery bonuses
Want to brighten someone’s day? Earn seven times the miles on 1-800-flowers through the Alaska Airlines shopping portal. Earn 20 miles on the dollar at FTD Flowers through Delta’s shopping portal. Or take advantage of discounts and Delta bonus miles earned at Gourmet Gift Baskets.
10. Office and school supply bonuses
Up your game while working from 凯发k8地址home with office supply Delta mileage bonuses at Staples, Office Depot and Costco Business. Earn bonus Alaska miles with office supplies like ink, computer software and educational tools from retailers like Dollar General, Sam’s Club and Melissa and Doug. Or shop for computer and paper supplies through the United MileagePlus Shopping portal.
11. Bonuses on 凯发k8地址home repairs and decor
Spring cleaning is in the air and it seems we’re all becoming a little more attentive to our 凯发k8地址home surroundings. Get free shipping and earn bonus miles with United MileagePlus 凯发k8地址home decor offers at retailers like Overstock or Cost Plus World Market. Watch Alaska miles add up with bonuses on 凯发k8地址home repairs and decor at 凯发k8地址home Depot and Williams Sonoma. Or boost your Delta mileage earnings with 凯发k8地址home organization purchases at The Container Store and Bed Bath and Beyond.
12. Tax prep mileage bonuses
Take advantage of discounts and bonus mileage earnings on H&R Block with Alaska’s Mileage Plan shopping portal. Earn 450 bonus United miles with TurboTax software purchases. Or start dreaming of tropical vacations with Hawaiian Airlines bonus miles on your TaxAct purchase. If you have a Delta Amex card, double dip on the rewards by checking your Amex Offers for cashback rebates on H&R Block.
13. Boost your at-凯发k8地址home hobbies with mileage earnings
Shop through your favorite airline retail portal to maximize mileage bonuses on craft supplies or puzzles and games at Walmart, Target or Staples. Earn bonus mileage as you enhance your 凯发k8地址home gym with gear from Dick’s Sporting Goods and Cabela’s. Or pick up a few foreign language books and language lessons at Books-A-Million as you hone your skills.
Remember, you need not have a co-branded travel credit card to take advantage of these bonus airline mileage offers. To maximize your mileage earnings, stick to one or two preferred airlines and shop directly through their portals to watch miles add up over time. Then start daydreaming where you’ll go with enough earned miles for a roundtrip ticket.
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