|2018 Bali trip deposit (2)||$3,520|
|One week Puerto Vallarta (4 people)||$3,295|
|One week DC area (4)||$1,115|
|Charleston weekend, yacht sleeping (4)||$1,005|
|Glamping weekend – RV hotel (4)||$670|
|One night Asheville (2 people)||$300|
|2018 Weekend Dome hotel stay (4)||$585|
|Credit card fees (miles & points)||$725|
|One night Great Wolf Lodge (4)||$330|
|Weekend camping (4)||$235|
|One night Tree house hotel (4)||$220|
We tried to give our family a great variety of experiences – sleeping on a boat, RV, camping, tree house, next year a dome, etc. Super fun travel year!
I am also including pre-payment expenses towards our epic (adults only!) almost 3 week trip to Bali next year (business class and luxury villas, baby!) – more on that soon! In addition, I pre-booked a “sleeping in a Dome” experience that I have wanted to try for a while and fit within budget so we went ahead and booked (next year travel budget goes down to $8K – will be hard to pre-book anything for 2019! Boo!).
Credit card fees & travel hacking
Yes, that is a hefty $725 dollar fee for credit cards that we use for travel hacking, but it absolutely pays for itself.
The biggest fee here is the Citi Prestige ($450 annual fee), which we have now had for 2 years. I love the 4th night free at most hotels, as many times as you want. You also get credit for Global Entry (we used that last year) and a $250 credit on travel expenses, yearly.
Also this includes each of our Marriott cards ($85 fee each) for which we are able to get 1 night free at a category 1-5 yearly, and we took advantage of their 7 night fly and stay packages, for which we got 7 nights free in DC and transferred American Airlines points towards a business class ticket to Bali next year in Cathay Pacific. Absolutely pays for itself!
I will probably do another post with all the cards that we own and use for more info. And no, I don’t get compensated for this, solely my opinion and personal use (I will disclose if that ever changes).
Best move 2017
Beyond the week long stay in DC with Marriott, the best travel hacking was the week long trip to the stunning, all inclusive Puerto Vallarta Hyatt Ziva during spring break.
The flights were retailing for $850- 950 dollars, EACH! I was able to do a combination of AA miles and Citi Thank you points and credit to get that down to under $180 for all of us (taxes and fees). Total.
We then used a coupon to get kids 50% off for the hotel AND used the Citi Prestige to get the 4th night free on the all inclusive, which ended about $2,665 for 7 nights. Beyond that we spent about $150 in transportation and the rest on extras (jet ski rental and a massage, etc) for a total of $3,295 for a week long spring break all inclusive vacation for 4, abroad. Not bad!
Tell me – how was your travel and expenses in 2017? Any fun tips for travel hacking or must visit places, anywhere?