NOTE: I’ll be going on a blogging vacation between December 18 and 31, during which there may or may not be any posts. But, we’ll ring in the new year on January 1, 2024 with the 2023 version of Travel Hacking as Told by GIFs though, so no need to be up in arms. What’s this “may”, you ask? I’m soliciting for guest posts and I’ll use those during the regularly scheduled newsletter. They should be non-sponsored, non-promotional, non-political, and at least travel hacking or churning adjacent. Please reach out to me if you’re interested, it’ll be the third easiest gig you’ve ever gotten!

  1. The American Express Delta co-branded cards have increased sign-up bonus via referral or at

    – Personal Gold: 70,000 miles after $2,000 spend in six months, annual fee waived the first year
    – Personal Platinum: 80,000 miles after $3,000 spend in six months
    – Personal Reserve: 90,000 miles after $5,000 spend in six months

    There are a couple of ways to play this: (1) Just think of a SkyMile as worth 1.0 cents toward Delta airfare and churn the card, (2) get the Platinum and/or Reserve card and hit big spend in the next couple of weeks to earn elite status before the program changes in 2024, noting that MQMs will post in the year you hit spend and not in the year that the statement closes, and that you can get business cards too. (Thanks to TheSultan1)
  2. Safeway / Albertsons stores have a digital coupon for 5x rewards points on third party gift cards running through December 19, but only for J4U chains that run weekly promotions starting on a Wednesday, not for those starting on a Friday. No, I’m not making this up.

    Occasionally when there’s a coupon like this, 5x actually means 6x, but that’s not the case this time based on my testing.
  3. Southwest is opening up its schedule through October 2, 2024 this morning. This extension includes Labor Day and end-of-summer travel. (Thanks to the unstoppable Brian M)
  4. Do this now (if you hold a Hyatt credit card): Register for 5,000 bonus points per stay of three nights or longer at Inclusive Collection hotels between January 8 and March 3, 2024, limit 10,000 bonus points.
  5. The Alaska Business card has a heightened bonus of 75,000 bonus miles after $4,000 spend in three months. This link is from an in-flight promotion, and you can use a referral code of 000000. UPDATE: This link is now dead.

    If you’re going to go for one Alaska Business card, why not a few? Also, don’t forget that the personal card still has a 70,000 bonus mile offer if you VPN to Southern California. (Thanks to DDG)
  6. Alaska’s elite program is changing for 2024. The major points:

    – Status is earned only via elite qualifying miles, or EQMs
    – Credit cards earn 4,000 EQMs per $10,000 spend, up to five times
    – Top tier members will have excess EQMs rolled over from year to year

    Unfortunately credit card spend alone will only earn you MVP status, which practically speaking means a few free checked bags on Alaska and other oneworld airlines but not a lot else.

Happy Thursday!

The tenth easiest gig you’ve ever gotten.