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We talked a little about this in the post on “The Basics” in the Beginner’s Guide.  I think that the default behavior for people starting out is just getting miles and points just to get them.  After all, if 5000 miles are good, shouldn’t 50,000 be even better!!!!

This is somewhat true, but the trick is the devaluation of miles and points.  I have read reports of people that work for years to save say, 300,000 airlines miles for 2 first-class round the world tickets, only to find the airline changing their award structure once they reach what they thought was the goal.  Just in the past few months, we’ve seen changes (not only devaluations but program changes) to Southwest, United, Delta, Hilton and I’m sure there’s more that I’m forgetting about

Hilton Conrad Maldives - used to cost as low as 37,500 points with an elite discount - now it's Category "10", costing up to 95,000 points

Hilton Conrad Maldives – used to cost as low as 37,500 points with an elite discount – now it’s Category “10”, costing up to 95,000 points

I’m actually kind of bad at this – there is just something about my personality that really likes accumulating things.  But just know that I AM trying :-).  This is why it’s so important to come up with a demand schedule – knowing where you want to go lets you know what kind of miles and points that you need to get.

Earn em and burn em

That is the mantra of the travel hacker – earn ’em and burn ’em.  The only reason to get points is to use them!!  While I am sure there are many bloggers that do have hoards of miles and points, I have read from some who intentionally try to get down to 0 before building up.

Don’t be a hoarder

We all know those people – just hoarding and hoarding.  And while it’s not quite as bad as the lady with 67 cats that you see on TLC, hoarding miles and points DOES come at a cost.  Remember – we earn points to travel!  So get on out there and use them!!

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