Up to 1600 Free Marriott Points

Marriott is running some promotions for the holiday season. Starting today, if you make your way over to Marriott's promotion page, you can link Marriott to your social media accounts and grab points for doing so. 

Heading over to the Marriott promotion webpage, you'll see the current promotion is running through December 7th, 1 month from now.

As the promotion states, all you need to do is connect your accounts, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to Marriott in order to receive 1,500 free points. What the promotion does not say here is that if you follow Marriott Rewards on Facebook and Twitter through this signup, you'll get another 50 points per follow, for a grand total of 1,600 points.

I do tend to lock down my social media and avoid companies having access, so like me you may be weary to give Marriott access to these accounts. We've seen companies go a little too far with this access in the past and post on user's behalf, usually to the detriment of the company. Luckily, Marriott is almost immediately posting the points to your account, so I was able to see the points added within a few hours, some users even faster. This means you can then go disconnect Marriott from your social media accounts and lock them back out. 

1,600 points is a decent free offer, and they transfer to SPG points at a 3:1 ratio. These 1,600 points would land you a little more than 500 SPG points. Head over to the promotion page to grab your free points

Delta Partners with Airbnb

Delta has some pretty awesome partnerships. On the hotel side, if you are a elite member on Delta and at Starwood Hotels, you will earn Delta miles on Starwood Stays and Starwood points on Delta flights. Earning these rewards give you an awesome chance to sort of double dip, getting miles and points this way is an important perk to take advantage of where you can.

This week Delta announced another partnership, this time with Airbnb.

If you are unfamiliar with Airbnb, the idea is that regular people who may not be using a home, apartment or some other dwelling, can post it for a short time or permanently on Airbnb for people to stay in for short vacation periods. 

Airbnb representatives had the following to say:

“We are excited to partner with Delta and offer their travelers the opportunity to earn Delta miles when staying and hosting n Airbnb, while creating memorable moments with friends and family,” said Lex Bayer, Head of Business Development, Airbnb. “SkyMiles members can now enjoy the additional benefits of living like a local with authentic travel experiences on Airbnb in all global destinations that Delta services.”

So it appears that staying with Airbnb will now be able to earn you Delta Skymiles.

It looks like Airbnb bookings need to be made through the Delta Airbnb partner site, which will request your Delta Skymiles account before redirecting you to the booking site. 

There are a few additional perks running with this promotion that may be worth a try. First, if you have never created an Airbnb account, as a new guest you are given $25 off your first booking, 1000 bonus Skymiles on your first booking and the standard 1 Skymile per $1 spent at Airbnb.

Second, if you want to host through Airbnb and have never done so, this partnership allows you to get a bonus 25,000 Skymiles. These are some pretty awesome one time perks, but in my mind not really worth going out of my way for. If I try Airbnb, it'll certainly be something I take advantage of, but the earning rates are not good enough to make me switch away from Starwood Hotels.

I will say this though, if you stay at Airbnb already, this is great. Personally I tend to stay at Starwood hotels instead. Earning a few Delta Skymiles is certainly not a good reason to switch from Starwood to Airbnb. Starwood points are just too valuable. Also, keep in mind that if you take advantage of the existing Delta and Starwood partnership, you already earn 1 Skymile per dollar spent at Starwood hotels, on top of getting Starwood points as well and that's a far better way to earn miles/points.

86,045 Miles... 45 Flights... 25 Airports... 1 Awesome Year

It's been a pretty eventful year in travel for me. 2016 has been the first year that I started to travel like a crazy person, and I loved every second of it.

My travels this year started with a work trip to France, my first time flying with Delta in years. 

Aix En Provence, France

Aix En Provence, France

Soon after, I made my first major miles based flights in business class to Argentina. A lackluster place to visit if I've ever seen one, but some great and not so great flights made for a memorable experience. Not to mention my first time aboard a Boeing 787, the aircraft I helped design right after graduating college.

United 787

United 787

Weeks later I boarded a flight to Hawaii where me and my girlfriend spent a week on vacation. This is where we were engaged, now my fiancee, we fell in love with Hawaii. Returning to Hawaii is a must for us, the islands are someplace everyone should get the chance to visit.

Pololu Valley, Hawaii

Pololu Valley, Hawaii

Another quick trip to France for work.

Then the last minute, spur of the moment flight to Beijing, China. Well as spur of the moment as it could get having to still get a visa from China.

Beijing Forbidden City

Beijing Forbidden City

A few trips back to see family in NY were sprinkled in throughout the year, but the next and biggest trip was my Cape Town and Dubai trip. Having just finished this, it really put a nice finish on the year of travel. 

Downtown Dubai

Downtown Dubai

I have a few more flights to go this year, but mostly short flights to my hometown, and to possibly see a friend in Florida if I have the cash to make that happen. Overall though it has been an awesome year, blowing away all my previous years of travel, I've seen more countries and flown more miles this year than my last 2 years combined.

Next year is coming fast, and I'll be off to the races as soon as I can. There are so many places left to see, and so many I want to revisit. The travel bug has bitten me hard, and I don't think it'll stop any time soon.

Delta Skymiles and Private Jets

Delta has just announced the ability to use Skymiles to get on board one of their private jets. Let me warn you up front, do not do this!!!

Let me explain. Delta has been driving down the worth of their Skymiles, ultimately it appears they are shooting to make each Skymile worth only 1 cent. Now this is a slow, but definitely steady process. Yet again this week, Delta has devalued their program for the 9 millionth time... alright that may be a small exaggeration, but more on that later

As Skymiles customers, our goal should always be to get the most worth out of miles as we possibly can. 

Delta has now released the ability for those of us with millions of miles, to spend them on private jets. First things first, Skymiles are being devalued so fast and frequently, no one in the right mind should be sitting on multiple millions of Skymiles, just don't do that. If you do happen to have that many Skymiles, the private jet may sound tempting.

Keep in mind that Delta is driving toward 1 cent per mile, and that is exactly what is being offered here from Delta. Starting at 2.5 million Skymiles, you will be able to pick up a Delta $25,000 Jet Card that acts like a private jet prepaid card. Using their private jet service will deduct off this prepaid card as you use the service.

If you are flush with miles and don't care about maxing out your usage, then by all means go for the card if that is what you want. I don't recommend it, since your miles are worth far more if applied correctly. At the end of the day, each person may want to use their miles for different things, so it is entirely up to you. Personally I'd much rather fly all over the world in business class than get a few rides in a private jet.

This just seems to be the latest way for Delta to try to reduce your mileage count at a rate that is very favorable to them. Devaluations are flying free and wild now with Delta, once again making me take a hard look at going free agent on the loyalty front. For now, I'd stay away from this private jet perk and focus on spending the miles you have in a way that gets you to amazing locations, in comfortable seating, at fantastic prices.

Virgin America Offering Even More Free Points

Virgin America is on a points offering spree it seems. September brought 2 seperate promotions that allowed everyone to sign up for email offers and recieve 500 Elevate miles after roughly 10 days. Some of my points just posted from the previous signup.

Well Virgin is back with another 500 miles if you sign up for more promotions, this time with their Virgin Produced newletter. The website doesn't go into much detail on what Virgin Produced is, after looking it up, it appears to be a media company of some sort. Regardless of what Virgin Produced is, you are able to sign up and recieve 500 free miles from Virgin America. If you have taken advantage of the previous offers, this will bring the total to 1500 free miles in the last 1-2 months, not a bad deal for signing up for some mildly annoying email offers that you can cancel later.

Sign up prior to Oct 26th, and you'll grab 500 miles within 10 days of the end of the promotion, much like the terms of the other two signups. I will never argue with free miles, so go grab them while they are hot!