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June 28, 2022

Making Travel Affordable Using Points


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This week is about family travel and the tips and tricks of using points to afford incredible vacations and instant getaways! Join me and my incredible guests, Bridget and Patrick Lovett, a family of four who loves to travel - and they know just how to do it!

Share your traveling tips on our Real Life Momz Facebook group at facebook.com/groups/reallifemomz/, and don’t forget to follow Real Life Momz so you don miss an episode.

Links to resources mentioned in this episode: 

*www.thepointsguy.com

*10x Travel Insiders Facebook group www.Facebook.com/groups/10xtravel

*www.onemileatatime.com

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Transcript

Welcome to Real Life Momz. I'm your host, Lisa Foster and Real Life Momz is a podcast where moms have real conversations, share resources and tell their inspiring stories. Our mission is to connect moms by talking about these topics that parents deal with every day and to continue these conversations in our Real Life Momz Facebook group, where we would love for you to become part of our community. Today, I invited a mom and dad duo Bridget and Patrick Lovett, who love to travel with their family, and they had been traveling all over the US, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and so much more. They've been doing this by using travel points to help them afford these amazing trips. Today, I asked Bridget and Patrick to come educate us on travel points and other resources that can help our family trips become more affordable. 

Hi Bridget. Hi Patrick. Welcome to Real Life Momz

Well, thanks so much. It's really great to be back and today you have your husband, Patrick with you and you guys are amazing at travel. You travel to amazing places, but you also have mastered the art of using points for travel, which makes it so much more affordable.

Yeah. I mean, we love travel and we needed to find a way when we were, early in our marriage when we had just started a business and we had two little kids, but we really wanted to travel. We had to find a way to make that happen in a way that would fit the budget.

So honestly like this topic came about because I was talking with my husband and we were just trying to plan a summer vacation and we just kind of totally got stuck. It just seemed like we kept getting into these like roadblocks. One of course was cost, but even just like figuring out like where to go. So my first question to you is how do you even pick where you're going to go on vacation?

Yeah, that's a good question. So we've got a lot of great places. Some of the places we go to see family, for example, like we tend to go to Virginia and Washington, DC, California, Kansas city to see a bunch of family.

We also have family that live in really cool places, family and friends who live in awesome places. So it will be like, hey, we're going to come see you in Japan. Oh, wow. We're going to go see you in New Zealand. And it's not that we're going to go stay with family. Um, we get our hotel points, use hotel points for that, but, it gives us an idea of where to go and we're not totally flying solo, but we have gone a lot of places where we don't know anybody. And that's great too.

Yeah. We tossed around so many ideas between like, do you want to go to this city or would we prefer like a beach vacation? And even when we finally like figured out where we wanted to go, just where we wanted to be within where we were going, just seems so overwhelming. I almost needed a vacation from planning my vacation.

Yeah. I mean, one thing that Patrick and I were kind of just joking about is that he loves to travel really to see the world and have experiences with his family. And I like to be with him and our kids. And so I can kind of do that anywhere. So when he then says something like, Hey, do you want to go to Ireland in the winter? I'm like, sure. Let's do it.

That'd be awesome. And if not, you know, going off season is a really great way to save money. And so, it might not be the most ideal time to go to someplace, but it can work out really well and make it accessible for a lot of people.  I think by traveling more and more, we don't hold it on this pedestal of, we need to go  when it's exactly the right conditions at the best time of the year you know, we don't have that in our mind.

Like we went to Japan during rainy season and we were raincoats the entire time and it was great.

No, that's a good point. Um, because I think though that, because we don't travel as much as you, um, we tend to like want to have a better experience. Like, you know, not in the raining season, we used to travel off season to save money, but like for instance, we went to Cape Cod and it was May, and we really wanted to have a beach vacation and have some time on the beach. But like when we were there, it was like so cold.

And although we like loved it, we had like one day of sunshine and we just thinking like, oh gosh, if there was more days like this, this vacation would have been amazing.

Totally and you know.  I guess being like Phoenix is so awesome and, you know, just go in July, it'll be fine. It won't be fine in July. It will be, it won't be what you're looking for from an Arizona vacation. Right. There's also a time perspective of it, right? Like there's the rainy season in Japan, which is really the potential that there could be a hurricane, which there happened to be when we were there. But you know, it's, I think the, the climate is in, in Tokyo at least is equivalent or similar to you like Washington DC, which is like, just like rarely snows, but I it can be cold and it's not fun to like walk around for hours when it's cold like that.

But on the other end, you know, in the middle of July, it's not real pleasant either. Cause it's steaming hot. Right? So like when are you going to have the perfect time to go? So there, you know, there's only so many times a year that are like the right time to go. But also what, when does my free time match up with that good time, you know, elsewhere? I mean, like with the kids' school, there's only a few times a year, realistically, that we can take an extended period of time, you know?

So that kind of dictates like, okay, we have like a week for fall break or the week for spring break, maybe something at Christmas time, maybe not, and then definitely the summer, but also everybody else is traveling.

I think to answer your question though, we said, um, two things really influenced how we choose where we are going to go. One being, what do we want to do? Well, often ask, do we want to go on a vacation or do we want to go on a trip? So if we're going to want to sit and chill and relax, that's going to be a totally different trip than if we want to hike and go on adventures and you know, sightsee and other things, um, you know, vacations don't always happen.

We joke that if we're bringing our children, it's automatically a trip It's not relaxing.

Yeah. I mean, It's fun.

And it's getting there getting to be such great travelers. It's getting to be a vacation for everybody, right. I mean, they've been traveling all the time too is now. So, um, but when they were little man, we were like, just remember, you might be in Hawaii, but it's not your vacation cause you have a two year old, you know?

Right. And, and it is a totally different kind of trip. Like I remember when we went to London, our kids were small. They were like eight months and three years old. And I remember someone saying that going on a trip with kids is definitely a different kind of vacation and it's true. You know, we ended up exploring these really awesome, cool parks that they had and doing like kid-friendly museums, which was really fun at the time,  but definitely a different trip than we would take now.

Well, and so we ask ourselves, do we want to do the vacation or the trip? And then you can plan around that, right? Like London has the coolest part. It's such cool parks, but you would never know, but you plan for your family trip. And that's really how that kind of goes down. So I mean, that's awesome. The other thing we look at really is what do we have points that we can use and where are there really good deals for points? Where can you get an amazing hotel for a special or something like that.

So Patrick follows a lot of blogs and podcasts and things like that, talking about how to use points for travel. And so we follow that and he'll be like, guess what? There's this great deal to Costa Rica? There's this hotel in Florida. Would you like to go check it out? And that's how a lot of our trips get planned.

Okay, Patrick, I am a point Virgin, we have a card, it has points, but I don't really understand how to even use them. So I need you to help me. I need to know everything about these points and how to use them.

Okay. So that's a big question, what Bridget mentioned earlier, you know, we were trying to figure out like, how do we travel? How can you afford to travel with a family of four? Um, you know, and at the time our parents lived out of town. My family lived out of town and it's like, how are we going to be able to travel and have enough money to be able to travel? Like for fun, because we're like at Christmas and Thanksgiving and other holidays and birthdays that we're going to see family, how are we going to do that?

We listened and by chance, one of my best friends from high school was out of here visiting me. And I'd seen all his posts, his wife did on Facebook. And I mean, they're going to Europe and they're going to Australia and you're going to Asia.

And I'm like, how in the world are you dealing with a family of four? And so when he was out here, I asked him, he goes, oh yeah. And he said, he referred me to a couple of websites. And he's like, yeah, these are the ones that I follow. And if you just get like a knack for it, if you just kind of study up a little bit, you'll kind of see patterns of like, uh, things that, that make sense. And  at the end of the day, it kind of comes down to math and figuring out like, kind of where the value is.

So I started reading that within, you know, within six weeks I was like, okay. And I kind of had a play on of, okay, I'm going to apply for these credit cards. And I'm going to get X, Y, and Z bonuses for signing up for these credit cards, which are great. And then also I think the point as  like currency, so for example, like we use chase credit cards a lot, but chase has their own like currency.

I am going to backtrack for a second. Like, what are the websites that you are getting all this information?

So the main one that I follow is called the points guy, G U Y.

The points guy.com. I'm going to sound like a dork. I probably check that website twice a day, at least because it's a blog.  I'm guessing 10 to 15 new articles each day and on the weekends. So, that's a really good resource. It will say like sometimes it'll say deal alert tickets to Europe for 500 bucks, or it might say these are the best hotels to stay at when you're going to Hawaii.

Or it might say, you know, a special deal on this credit card. You know, if you signed up now you get a a hundred thousand point bonus. Whereas normally it's always 50,000.

This never seems like a little scammy to you.

Yeah, no. So they don't sell tickets. It's like, American has a deal from JFK and Dulles going to Heathrow. Um, you know, for, for 500 bucks, you know, go click on the Delta website or Google flights or whatever, but they're not selling these things. 

They keep track all the offers out there. Okay. Got it.

That's right. And it's, you're smart to like, go, oh wait, no, we're talking credit cards. And this has impact on my credit. How is this going to affect them? But the big thing. So that was kind of what I came at was with some caution to Patrick. And what we're understanding is really, if you are somebody who pays it off every month, anyways, you can make it work for you. 

And so getting into this, it wasn't a risk for us to open a credit card because we weren't going to have a balance on the credit.

I should have said that first. That is really the number one. If you carry a balance, um, with these things you lose. So that's what they want you to do. They want you to sign up for their credit card, right? But like chase or American express, they want you to sign up for their credit card balance and they make interest. So that's the number one rule is you cannot carry a balance, if you do, they will make a lot more money off of you on interest than you will ever make it.

But if you're one of the people who kind of figure out, figure it out and not carry a balance and be wise with your money,  then you can use that and leverage it to your advantage too, to take advantage of those deals.

Okay. So I'm getting a little lost. So can you explain a little bit more about how the points actually work?

Right. So like, it depends on the kind of card that you have, what kind of points you have, like different currencies, right? So, um, like there's ultimate rewards or have like a certain value if you will, versus like other points, let's say, like Hilton points, they're a lot less valuable because it takes more nights or seeming more points to redeem for, you know, a free hotel room would say, so like certain points are more valuable.

And I think  like the U S dollar versus, you know, the Mexican peso, they're not one better than the other per se, but one is more, you know, when you compare one to one, one is more valuable. And so the same, thing's true with points. So when people are like, oh, I have, you know, whatever, a hundred thousand points, well, it kind of depends what points you have because certain ones are more valuable.

Okay. So then what do you consider like the most valuable point card?

Uh, so the, the cards, I like the, the chase ones, like I was mentioning because of the different transfer partners that you can have, the value on those points is pretty high, but you can like transfer them to Southwest, United airlines, Hyatt, um, you know, a few other places where you can get really good value out of using those points. And again, it's a matter of, I wouldn't say there's a real easy way to do it, but learning kind of the values of the points and learning the transfer partners and kind of figuring out, okay, like, you know, I found this good deal on Southwest and then transfer points over here.

I'm going to buy it. It's a good value.

The other thing that you can look at is from different cards, give you points and more points for different reasons. So if you go out to eat a lot, there are cards that give you double points for going out to eat, so  you can also choose cards based on that. Like at any given time, I might have two or three cards in my wallet that Patrick and I have sat down and said, okay, if I'm going out to eat, or if I'm traveling, I use this card. If I'm going grocery shopping or to the mall, I use this card.

If I go to home Depot, I use this card. And what that does then is that just maximizes the amount of points, because we have found out that that card gives you double points for when you use it at those facilities. Right. Or if you do a lot of domestic travel, getting like a Southwest card can be really amazing because there's ways to do a lot of domestic travel with a Southwest card.

So I personally have a card with points, but I think what I'm getting stuck on is that really knowing what I can use my points for and how to actually apply them when I'm actually purchasing something.

Yeah. So depending on the card, like if it's a, I wouldn't say generic, but if it's a, uh, like  a chase only card, right? Not a United chase card or a Southwest card, but like a straight a chase card, usually it'll attach to recall ultimate rewards points. When you log in to your account, like to see your balance and stuff on the side, you'll see, you have whatever 60,000 points, right. Click on that. It'll take you to the ultimate rewards section.

And it gives you a bunch of options up at the top. And one of them is, I think it says like travel or book travel and you click on that. And then, you can look up flights, uh, you can look up hotel rooms and stuff through the chase portal. I don't think that they used to use, they used to use Expedia, but I don't think they do anymore. But basically you can. So let's say a hotel room is a hundred dollars a night.

Right. And you click on it will give you the option. Do you want to pay a hundred dollars for this room or do you want to use whatever 10,000 points? And so yeah, you click on that and that's how you reserve it.

I have a question for you, Patrick, and here I am married to him, but you're bringing up some good points, Lisa. Um, but is there like a cheat sheet for a place to go to see, okay. I mean, I know the points guy and a couple of the other blogs that you follow, but is there a place where you go to find out what credit cards do, or what points are worth?

So a couple things about that. So something that I forgot to mention, and I probably should, I haven't actually done it. So I've sort of done is it's called, uh, it's a Facebook group, 10 X travel insider, but it's a good resource. They have over a hundred thousand members in that group and people will post, right? Like, oh, I just found this deal for, you know, whatever flights or XYZ. They also have a, they call it a beginner course. And I haven't taken it because I've beendoing the points for like seven years.

And I just joined this group like a year ago. But if you were new and you joined this group and kind of the rule is you have to take the course. If you take the course, I think the listeners would learn a lot. It's free. Um, I assume it's like a PowerPoint or something and it would give you a lot of the background and basics.

The other thing is like Brigit asked. Like what card does what, when you apply for a card, you need to have a purpose for the card. You kind of need to have a bit of a plan. Like there, I don't do this often because there are certain rules that certain credit card companies have, like chase where it's like, if you apply for more than four credit cards within 24 months, they're not going to approve you for more. I'm not real big on like applying for a lot of credit cards per se. Let's say they release a credit card that has like some elevated bonus.

And it's really good. Yeah. I'll sign up for it, get the elevated bonus. And that's my purpose for that card. And I might cancel that card a year later. It might be a card that there been cards that had something like that in the past that like Bridget said, they also offer three times points when you use it at a restaurant or use it on travel, whether it's hotels, rent-a-cars whatever.

Well, we still have that card, uh, over five years later. And so like my purpose for that card, I could cancel at any time, but my purpose is like, we learn, we earn a lot of extra points by using that card. Right. So point being is, you kind of have to, you have to have a little bit of a game plan of like, okay, like if I'm going to apply for this card, this is the purpose of the card. And I have to know what I'm going to do with the plan with those points of potentially whether I'm going to, you know, fly Southwest or United or whatever the case might be, or take this certain trip.

Like the trip that we took to, um, to Australia, New Zealand, I think we each signed up for a couple of cards to make that happen and it was totally worthwhile.

Okay. So do you actually have a destination and get a card to earn points and then actually cancel that card after? Is that right?

So yeah, I mean, not all the time, but yeah. Sometimes like, for example, for that trip, we signed up for two credit cards each. Well, some of those credit cards have like high annual fees. Yeah. I mean, I probably wouldn't cancel it the month after I got that bonus per se. But maybe before that annual fee comes back up, you know, 10, 11 months later, I might cancel it because I don't want to pay an additional fee again. Now going back to credit part of it, as long as you manage your credit correctly, I don't know the exact equation of how they figure out a credit score, but one of them is also like how long you've had certain amount of credit.

So you don't want to be, you don't want to be churning through 10 credit cards a year because that doesn't look good. But as long as you're paying it off your balance and you're paying your bills responsibly, your credit should stay high. And  like I said, if you're responsible and doing it in a responsible manner.

Yeah. You know, we have a partnership in our travel world, but as you can tell from the interview, Patrick's really passionate about figuring out how to do it with our points so that we can make more of the world accessible to us at any given time. And something Patrick has always done is travel. His mom was a flight attendant. And so he has grown up traveling and I had to really get okay with the fact that our kids weren't always going to be perfect and all these other countries we were going to,and that, you know, we were going to have a lot to learn going to these places, but we just kind of had to jump in with two feet and not be scared to try it out.

And it's definitely been worth it. Um, and we've had some pretty amazing experiences because of it.

You know, we've gone on a lot of tropical vacations, like Hawaii and Mexico and Florida, and really beautiful places and had a lot of fun, cool vacations and stuff like that with our family, which I would have guessed would have been our kids' favorite, you know, maybe a Disney world or a Harry Potter land. Some of those would have been their favorites. But, when we've asked them recently, they told us that Japan was their very favorite place they've ever been. Wow. Put it in perspective. It was rainy season. They had to be on their  best behavior the whole time.

And they weren't. But Japanese culture is that, you know, the children are well-behaved and people are quiet and children are quiet because you don't want to invade someone else's space with your noise. Well, you know how quiet I am? So imagine how quiet our children are. They're not. And it was like, oh no, this is so hard. So it was a real challenging trip. It was super challenging. It's super amazing. So for them to say that their favorite, lets me know that they're not looking for ease of travel as much as they're looking for the experience of travel.

And that kind of changed my perspective of where I want to take them.

So do they have input and where you guys choose to go?

Not really. We used to let them weigh in a lot more, but they were choosing like, you really wanted to go to China or really, and that would probably be an amazing location, but points weren't taking us there. So we, we chose another Asian country in Japan. Um, but really they don't get much of a say, but we do keep them in mind when we pick the place, but we don't ask their opinion.

Do you guys ever use like Airbnb or do you just do kind of hotels or resorts?

We've done Airbnb a little bit, but we usually do it out of pocket. Um, when we do.

We do a lot of resort.

Yeah. Going back to the thing about points is the interesting thing about points is you can, you can get amazing value out of point. So like for example, we went to, you know, this was like a year ago. Um, it was spring break time and you know, we weren't sure what was going on with masks and uh, COVID tests and whatnot. So I was like, let's just go to, um, let's just go to Florida. You're supposed to be this amazing hotel. And it's a reasonable amount of points for a really nice hotel.

It was 20,000 points a night, which like isn't cheap. But if you compare that, if you bought that hotel room and cash, it was at the time, like when I booked it, it was over $500. Wow. Yeah. Which means those points basically, and this is a good way to ensure my value.

Those are high. Those are, that would make each point worth over 4 cents, which is a lot like that's really good value. And it was a great resort. We had a lot of fun, so yeah, just like making good use of the points, um, and finding value. Uh, and that's kind of comes down to the math like, oh wow, this is like, that's how you get like a good deal. It doesn't necessarily mean it's cheaper, but you can stay at great places like that. I mean all over the world, but you kind of have to find.

So what has been your best family vacation?

I would say one of the ones that we liked the most, I don't think we use, well, we use points. Maybe the flights went during COVID back in like October of COVID. We ended up going to Kansas city and we went with her parents. We flew into Kansas city, drove down to table rock lake, which is about three and a half hours away. Um, they stayed in a hotel or parents did, we rented a camper, an RV, and I rented it from a local guy.

And so he, pulled it in, he parked it, he hooked it up the whole nine yards. We rented it for a week and stayed there, had a blast at a campground, but in an RV. And then again, he was local, he came, he picked it up. Um, we didn't have to move it an inch. And, uh, and it was awesome.

Well, like, uh, just a very simple vacation really.

Um, I grew up camping. So, you know, here, we're talking about this international travel that our children are doing. My travel was we would go to a lake in Kansas about twice a month and camp all summer long. And that was the extent of it. And then once a year we would drive down to Texas and stay at a beach with our camper and that was kind of it. And so, you know, our kids hadn't really experienced any kind of camping, even though we live in Colorado, it's kind of a shame, but we really haven't done a lot of it.

And, um, and so this was a really cool way for them to get to experience camping, but in a way that didn't challenge our camping skills and the there's an RV kind of like an Airbnb, but for RVs,.

And it was, it was really cool. It was really cool.

Yeah. I had to pay the guy a little bit extra for like a delivery charge, if you will. And he dropped it off, set it up, hook it up, looked it up and then we just showed up, stayed in it. And he picked it up when we were done.

Oh, that's so fun. So what vacations do you have planned now?

Yeah, one of Bridget's roommates from college is from Fairbanks Alaska. So we're going to go up to, Fairbank's for a few days and then drive down into Anchorage and do that right after school ends for the kids actually the day after school. And so like end up in beginning of June, that's pretty exciting. And then we're going to use points and fly to Minnesota and meet up with bunch of my high school friends and all their families. So kind of like a mini reunion. So that should be a lot of fun. And then that's in July.

And I'm going to Mexico provider to on point with the girls in June. 

Yeah, our fall break next year, we're going to go to Costa Rica for nine nights, which should be cool. And then I just booked last Friday, I booked tickets actually  to Ireland for, I think, nine nights for New Years.

Wow. You guys really plan.

It's, it's nice to have someone who is a planner. I mean, my husband is a planner and he, um, can keep like numbers and, um, point values and things like that. Straight that  if I wasn't married to Patrick, I don't know that I would be doing as much points travel. It is something you have to keep organized and straight. I think it's something that anybody can do, but Patrick has fun doing it and it would be really, I think, real hard for me to do so I'm really grateful that you can do it.

We're still planning our summer vacation. We're going to go to Hawaii, No points.

Not yet.

Not yet. We haven't rented a car yet, so maybe that's our opportunity, but that alone, like we're done. Like, we're like, okay, that's our trip. So it's inspiring to hear planning all these trips.

We had to take a lot of the weight of it being perfect out of the equation.

For it to be, for us to be comfortable biting the bullet. Even when we put travel without points, we have to have a little bit of surrender to the travel guides and saying, you know, what's going to happen is going to happen. But I mean, we were flying into Tokyo and there was a typhoon and we know rainy season, but as soon as we landed, they were like, there are no more flights in or out of Tokyo. So we got there and we are going to visit my cousin for like five days in Tokyo.

And his flight couldn't come in to Tokyo. He was out of town. We, you know, so being flexible is a huge piece of travel for us is that it may all hit the fan, but at the end of it, that's all part of the adventure come, what may, it's an experience. And so that makes it a little, uh, less hard to say, okay, yeah, let's do it. Let's go. Because even with the best laid plans, if you get too married to those plans, they absolutely Murphy's law will not end up like the way you wanted it to go or they'll be different, but different can be amazing if we allow it to be.

Yeah, that's a good perspective. And I think it's hard when traveling with kids.

Yeah. And our children are not flexible. I mean, that is not, I don't know that kids really are. Um, but our, our children have a real special inflexibility sometimes. 

I think the travel teaches them to be more flexible. And I think that's true. I think that's one of the huge benefits of traveling with your kids is yes, you get to show them different cultures. You get to show them, you know, different foods and different whatever, but also just like wrapping your head around or them happy wrapping their head around. It's not always going to be perfect. It's not always going to work out exactly the way that we plan, but we're going to get through this and it's going to be fun no matter what.

Can I tell you? The magic that happened the night of, um, the typhoon. Okay. So I mean, we were hoping to get there and we had like, you know,  places we wanted to go for dinner and all these cool things. Well instead, the only thing open was seven eleven. So we went over to seven eleven  in Japan is like gourmet. So we got like sushi and then the kids got to get all these gas station treats. And then we got to, and I found a Zima.

When was the last time you saw Zima and went back up to the hotel room and we played board games and we ate dinner. That was from a gas station, but it's from really nice gas station. And it was so fun. You know, we played clue.

They were stopping and talking to all the hotel staff. And by the time we left, the hotel, staff wrote them a letter and they were writing letters back and forth. It was the sweetest. So, you know, magic really can happen out of a little bit of, um, uncertainty, but, you know, we've had some pretty amazing trips that were, there were things that were planned and things that weren't planned. I mean, New Zealand and Australia is a must do it's, it's amazing as well. Um, but, it is interesting to think about, you know, some of our fun trips, but the big, the big thing for you and for anybody who is wondering about traveling with their family or starting to look into points, it's kind of a, why not just do it, it's so fun.

And it's, it's been such a rich experience for us. And people always say, wow, you're so lucky. And I see Patrick with the computer and he's, you know, really into checking it out. It's a hobby for him. So he works hard at it to do the points, but it's been a real treasure for our family.

Right. And it sounds like there's great resources through just these, even the groups and websites too. 

Absolutely.

Well, thank you guys so much for sharing all this information about points and just making travel like more affordable. That's good insight. Then I think a lot of us are not using this resource, you know, so thank you.

Yeah, you're welcome. It was a lot of fun to be here.

Thanks, Lisa.

Thanks.

Thank you for listening to this episode. I am definitely going to check out some of those resources that Patrick and Bridget shared with us today. Come join us on our Real Life Momz, Facebook group, and share your creative resources on how you afford travel with your family. And don't forget to follow Real Life Momz so you don't miss an episode.





Patrick & Bridget Lovett Profile Photo

Patrick & Bridget Lovett

Patrick & Bridget have always loved travel. In fact, Patrick's mom was a flight attendant when he was growing up. During his childhood his family traveled a lot because they flew for free. When Bridget & Patrick started a family and a business in 2009, they wondered how they were ever going to afford going on vacation other than going to see their families that lived out of state. In 2015, a dear friend introduced Patrick to the world of credit card points and miles for hotels, airfare and other crazy adventures.

Since that initial introduction to points and miles, Bridget and Patrick have taken their family of four to Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Mexico, and all over the United States. This year they have trips to Alaska, Costa Rica and Ireland on the books ALL using points and miles.