My husband and I are goal-oriented people. One of our favorite things to do on New Years Day is to sit down and set our goals and resolutions for the coming year and travel is always high on the list of a goal to do it more often. Part of the plan is also saving more money so we can travel more, and earn more points and miles so we don’t have to save as much. We are very specific in our goals; we write them down and keep them posted in our office as a constant reminder.
Our Travel Goals and Resolutions for 2013
–Take one short trip per month either using points or a discount deal from Groupon, Living Social, Travelzoo, etc. We already have a family cruise planned in March and our annual Christmas trip for December. The rest of the months will be spontaneous depending on the deals we can find.
–Save $11,000 for next big trip planned for 2014 when we will take off a year to travel. (This is in addition to our other savings goal to fund our IRAs and other retirement funds to the maximum.) Here’s a link to how we focus on saving money for travel without sacrificing our life.
–Sign up for 6 more bonus credit card offers. We need to focus on balancing airline miles and hotel points. At the moment, we have tons of airline miles but not enough hotel points for very many free stays. We get most of our best credit card deals from MillionMileSecrets and The Points Guy.
The credit cards with big bonuses we want in 2013 include:
1. Bob to sign up for the Priority Club Rewards by Chase for 80k points good for 2-4 free hotel nights depending on the property. (I got the card in 2012. Here is the link I used to get my card for 80k points a few months ago–it doesn’t specify the bonus but I confirmed it when I got the card. It does have an annual fee but the benefits more than outweigh the fee in my opinion.)
2. Me to sign up for the Southwest Rapid Rewards business card for 50k points. I just cancelled my personal card before the annual fee was due so I will be able to “churn” the deal and get the card again in the future. We have been using Southwest more often because its so easy to book a flight with points compared to American Airlines, which was our favorite carrier until we both got the Southwest Rapid Rewards cards last year. These cards are well worth the $69 annual fee for the 2 free flights we get. (The link above is good for both the personal and business cards.)
3. Bob and I both to sign up for Marriott Rewards Visa for 50k points each (good for 2-3 nights PLUS we each get 1 free night.) These will work great for our monthly mini-vacations.
4. Bob and I both to sign up for Club Carlson Premier cards for 85k points each. With this card when we book 2 nights with rewards we get a 3rd night free. With 85k points we can stay 2-3 nights free and then also get the bonus night. Again, great for our monthly mini-vacations.
–Hike locally at least once every other month. For us, this is a great “staycation” that feels like a real vacation plus it’s good for our heath!
If travel is important in your life, make specific travel goals and resolutions so you can travel more often and for less in 2013!