Most of us sign up for the award programs for the hotels and airlines that we use the most. We do not take the time to sign up for a hotel that we think we’re only going to stay in for a few nights, or an airline that’s taking us on an international trip that is a once-in-a-lifetime.
If you had a crystal ball and knew you were going to be flying on the same airline and staying in the same hotel for multiple trips, of course you’d sign up for their award programs. Without the crystal ball, it’s easy to say “Oh, I’m only flying this airline one time … I doubt I’ll ever fly them again.” And months later, you find yourself booking a ticket on that same airline. Or your one-time-only airline merges with another and you could have combined the points into one account. This goes for hotel stays and car rentals as well.
You never know where your travels may take you, so sign up for every travel award program possible.
3 reasons why:
- You begin accruing points from your first flight, hotel stay or car rental.
- The opportunity to use the same airline, hotel or car rental company in the future is high, especially with mergers and acquisitions consolidating the number of companies; and
- Discounts and deals are sent to you via email, which can offer great savings on future travel. (If you’re worried about too many emails, set up a separate email account just for your travel accounts.)
What if you’ve recently traveled and had not signed up for the travel company’s award program? If you have your receipt or boarding pass, you still have a chance! Sign up now and send in a copy of the proof of your travel and request that the points be credited to your new account. 6 to 12 months may be the limit to get in your mileage request for missing miles or stays, but the time may be shorter (a quick 30 days) for applying your recent travels to your new rewards account.
Here are links to a few travel companies for requesting missing or new miles/stays/rentals so you can see the type of information needed:
To receive a free copy of our ebook, 70 Secrets to Safe Travel — Because Your Life Can Change in a Heartbeat, and for more travel savvy info to help you travel smarter, safer and with more enjoyment, visit SmartWomenTravelers.com and PearlsofTravelWisdom.com.