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What is your favourite credit card?
My all-time favourite is the Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card (formerly Starwood Preferred Guest American Express Card). It comes with an annual 15 Marriott Bonvoy elite night credits that helped me to achieve that coveted Marriott Bonvoy top elite status. Plus, the annual FREE one night stay every membership anniversary easily justifies the cost of the annual fee.
What has been your favourite flight you've taken using miles?
So far my best redemption was the almost 15-hour Cathay Pacific first class flight from LAX to HKG which I booked using 70,000 Alaska Mileage Plan miles plus 60 CAD! What is great, is that with Marriott Bonvoy, you can transfer to 45 different airline loyalty programs. Happily, I transferred my Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card welcome sign-up bonus points to my Alaska Mileage Plan to help contribute to the needed miles.
What made this extra special is that I had the whole first class cabin for myself during this flight. Nothing beats relishing caviar with champagne in the first class cabin, plus I had a separate seat converted to be my bed. To add more value, this booking came with a free Hong Kong stopover and second segment business class flight from Hong Kong to Manila.
What has been your favourite hotel you've stayed at on points?
I would not argue that the best redemptions can be made in most 5-star hotels, but I also believe that good redemptions can be made even in lower category hotels. For example, I previously redeemed 12,500 Marriott Bonvoy points (valued at around 112 CAD) for a night stay at Aloft Taipei Beitou which would have easily cost $200 CAD, had I booked this last minute.
What has been your worst hotel or flight experience using points or miles?
I can’t think of one on top of my head and I truly hope that I won’t have an answer for this question in the future.
What is your biggest regret since starting this hobby?
In hindsight, I should had educated myself more before embarking on this journey. I made a mistake in the past that cost me around 20,000 United MileagePlus points. During that time, there was a special promotion on hotel points to airline miles transfer. I was impatient since the website was having recurrent errors, so I decided to make the transfer by phone. To my dismay, I was told 3 months later, that points that were transferred over the phone were not eligible for the bonus. This is the reason why our team is here to share our knowledge and to help you maximize your miles and points.
What is your best piece of advice for those who are interested buy haven’t started this hobby yet?
Be very excited, think smart, and dream big! Start first with the decision where to bank your miles and points. I noticed that many people have points distributed in multiple loyalty programs (just like me initially) that in the end you won’t accrue enough points to redeem something that is of excellent value. Nothing beats studying and learning first prior to earning, converting and redeeming points. It is fortunate that there is tons of information now and I suggest you stay tuned here with the Master and our team to help you plan out that coveted dream flight and well-deserved vacation. We will be glad to answer your travel-related questions to the best of our abilities. I hope you enjoy this journey as much as we did.
What is your favourite Vancouver hotel?
The Douglas, Autograph Collection. The unique and vibrant atmosphere coupled with the keen attention to details really made an impression during my stay. The Douglas is currently a category 6 hotel, so it will cost 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night to stay.
What upcoming trip are you most looking forward to?
I just ticked off my “around the world” trip in OneWorld business class cabin off my bucket list using Asiamiles. I am now looking forward to my upcoming roundtrip business and first class flights from Saigon to Chicago via American Airlines and Vietnam Airlines codeshared with Cathay Pacific that I bought for less than $1500 CAD!
Jayson set his foot on a plane when he was 12 year old and loved it ever since. His ardent wanderlust had helped him explore the world amidst his busy work schedule. He does not mind travelling solo to explore what every city has to offer. Although he was introduced to the world of miles and points on a later time, it did not prevent to learn to use points strategically in his travel. His trips were immediately transformed from economy class and hostels to luxurious first class and hotels, and never looked back.