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ft4rlYesterday was the 3rd Family Travel for Real life conference and I had a blast.  I thought that I would share my thoughts on the conference

When I first started out in the travel hacking hobby, I was somewhat off-put by a lot of these conferences and get togethers.  Why would I want to spend hundreds of dollars

Now I realize that much of the benefit of attending these conferences comes not from the content of the presentations themselves (though there’s usually several good nuggets in there even for the most grizzled veteran), but from networking with other like-minded folks.  We even found out yesterday that Rich the Points Jock grew up with my brother-in-law :-D.  It’s always fun to talk to other people who know what you’re talking about when you

Dia always does a great job of a) keeping the costs down, b) organizing good speakers and c) providing ample time for those of us at the conference to interact together.  I think nearly 80-90% of the attendees also went out to dinner together after the conference (I, unfortunately, had to catch a flight to head home).

Here are the recap links to my live blogs of the 5 sessions in case you missed them, but I thought I’d also share some of my notes for things that I want to do better

What I learned at FT4RL

  • Trevor and Kenny really taught me that I need to up my game in earning points.  I’m not signing up for “enough” credit cards, and I think one of the reasons that I’m not is because I don’t spend a lot of time manufactured spending.  The thing is that a lot of manufactured spending (especially things like reselling) are really in my wheel-house – it’s things that I would enjoy and I think would be good at – I’m just not dedicating myself to it.  I need to treat it more like a business and get serious about it
  • I also need to get myself some Nationwide VisaBuxx cards, especially given how many social security numbers I have access to 😛
  • Angelina (Just Another Points Traveler) mentioned a website called Mercari, which is like Craigslist but with nationwide reach.  Basically you snap a picture of something you want to sell (think clothes or household items), and when someone wants to buy it, Mercari gives you a postage-paid envelope to ship it to them, and there’s no commission!  I don’t know how they make any money but maybe they make it up on volume 🙂 You’ll want to use her referral code (RJWCJJ) if you sign up
  • I’m not sure I can go to Disney next year or any time soon – it seems very intimidating (and expensive!)  I’m just not sure it’s worth the price and hassle when there are so many other places to go for cheaper
  • Rich shared some CRAZY things on the Etihad Guest partner award chart.  He actually wrote an article for The Points Guy on the topic a few months ago – definitely something to check up on.

Most of all – I enjoyed seeing some old faces, meeting new folks and sharing my knowledge with everyone there as well – see you next time!

Were you there at #FT4RL?  What were the things YOU learned?

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