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Archive for September 2015

The 2016 Travel Calendar [Luxury Travel on a Backpacker's Budget]

A blog has gone viral recently when Rolling Stone magazine published an article that this guy travels for free. I follow his blog, and also want to show the people that no, he didn't really do it for free, these points & miles have a cost in it (ie credit card spend, etc).

This post is to show that lowly people like me and you can indeed travel for free. You don't have to become a popular travel blogger, nor email a lot of establishments asking for free stays and activities. In fact, I find that it is actually easier to just pay for your own travels than ask for sponsored trips. That way, you don't have to be biased when you write about the destination and you get your own experience instead of someone painting a picture of a destination for you.

Here is a list of our 2016 plans of (almost) free travel:

January 1-3, 2016:  Orlando, Florida


February 2016: Montego Bay, Jamaica


Hotels -

May 21 - 23, 2016: Miami, Florida

Why?  Need a visa to get back to Europe (third world passport and all). Plus his cousin is landing in Miami for our wedding! (cousin-in-law managed to snag a $500 RT direct flight from Vienna to Miami, which was a great deal)

Hotels - Eyeing the Hyatt Renaissance in Miami for 12,000 Hyatt Points a night or perhaps an 8,000 Hyatt near the airport. Any suggestions?

June 18 - July 3, 2016: France, Switzerland, Austria & Slovakia

Why? Euro 2016 - as you probably know by now, my fiance is an avid soccer fan, so we're flying there mostly to see if Slovakia (the country he's from) will play. We got ticket to one game already in Lyon. 

The Routing: TPA - FRA - LYS - GVA - VIE - RSW.

We start from Tampa on the 18th of June, as we have to bring our dog to my future in-law's place. Myself & Peter will travel to Frankfurt, spend an 8 hour layover (free c/o United), then get on a plane to Lyon to meet his brother. We'll then make our way to Geneva, where I'll get on a plane to Vienna. Will spend a day or two in Vienna to wait for Peter & his brother to arrive, then spend a week in Slovakia, his home country. From Vienna, I'll fly back to Ft Myers, where my future in-laws will pick me up.

Airfare: Used 60,000 United Points (transferred from Chase Sapphire Preferred/Ultimate Rewards)  + $150 in taxes & fees (reimbursed using Barclaycard Arrival+). Total spend: $0.


  •  Lyon - 
  • Annecy -  
  • Chamonix -
  • Geneva - 
  • Vienna -

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