Saturday, April 1, 2017

A long, boring story ;)

April is off to a great start! The sun has been out, drying up the water from the rain we got over the last few days, and even though it's still a bit cold, it at least looks like spring. What a gorgeous day today!

I've been trying to plan a trip to Portland (which has basically become an annual thing) for the end of May, and I've been watching the airline tickets for a couple of months, waiting for a good deal to come along. But they've been crazy expensive! Normally, a ticket would be about $400--but the ones for the dates that I want were $550+, and even those ones in the $500's had odd flight times. It was starting to look like the only way to get a ticket would be to spend over $600, which I was not willing to do. I started thinking about using a buddy pass, but there are other problems that arise when using a pass, so I wasn't sure if it'd be worth it.


Jerry and I each have SkyMiles accounts, and as of this morning, my balance was 29,727. Jerry's balance was 23,708. To purchase the ticket with SkyMiles would have cost about 50,000-ish miles. I could get the ticket with some SkyMiles plus cash, but the minimum miles needed in order to do that was 30,000--and I'm just shy of that number.

So, I wanted to ask Delta if I could merge Jerry's and my miles. Since we are married, I assumed it wouldn't be a big deal. Well, Delta doesn't allow transfers of SkyMiles without a big penalty fee--even between spouses--and it would have cost $250 to transfer Jerry's miles to ME, his wife. I thought that was ridiculous, and I was not about to agree to that. I had a very unpleasant experience with the SkyMiles customer service, and got nowhere. The woman acted like I was an idiot for even asking if I could merge our miles into one account.

Then, I called American Express to see if they could do anything, since it's a Delta SkyMiles Amex. The service rep was super nice, but said they don't have authority to do much with the SkyMiles plan--Amex and SkyMiles are two separate accounts. She was able to offer me 12,500 miles for being a good-standing customer, but said the miles wouldn't show up in my account on time for this ticket. It was really cool of her to help how she could! But I still wasn't sure what to do about my ticket.

I started trying to think of an alternative/creative way to use our miles, and I decided that maybe I could get two one-way tickets instead of a round trip ticket--pay for one with my miles, and for the other with Jerry's miles. Perfect!

So, I checked the flights, and there was pretty much NOTHING for less than 30,000 miles. (To get my miles balance up to 30,000, I would only have to spend $273 on my American Express card--but the miles wouldn't appear in my account on time to buy the ticket.) If I decided to do the one-way tickets, then I would have to pick a crappy flight time in order to have enough miles for it, and arrive in Portland at midnight. Just as I decided fine, I'll do that, I noticed a flight that had no availability for coach, but it had a first class ticket available... for 25,000 miles. Say what?! I was shocked. I never even look at first class, because it's way too expensive.

I thought it had to be a glitch (or April Fools joke?), but I quickly started the process to buy the ticket. The departure and arrival times were fantastic, and it was first class with one short layover. I couldn't believe how lucky I'd gotten! And then when I'd filled in ALL my info, I clicked "purchase"--and the screen said that the ticket at that price was no longer available.


I almost cried I was so frustrated. I tried again a few more times, with the same result, so I called Delta again. The woman who I spoke with was amazing, and she said someone else must have purchased it right out from under me while I was filling in my info. Because of the inconvenience, she allowed me to choose a different flight, first class, at the same cost--25,000 SkyMiles + $5.60. So, I bought a first class ticket with flight times I was happy with, and I was able to get the whole thing with my SkyMiles! I was thrilled.

The only flight that I had enough SkyMiles to buy to get home from Portland (using Jerry's miles) was a redeye, but I actually like redeye flights... so it was my top choice anyway, and it was only 15,500 SkyMiles + $5.60.

I can't even tell you how stoked I am that I was able to get both tickets for a combined total of 40,500 SkyMiles and $11.20... and I'll be in first class on the way there! I had almost given up even trying to go on this trip because I just wasn't sure how I was going to be able to pay for the ticket. As frustrating as it was earlier, everything worked out perfectly!


Have any of you started watching 13 Reasons Why on Netflix? I read the book a couple of times several years ago, and I loved it--I was really excited when I saw that it was going to be a series on Netflix! I started watching it yesterday; and already, I like it a lot. It's been a while since I read the book, so I can't really remember everything that happens.

Anyway, I was just excited about the plane ticket story, so I wanted to share :) Happy Saturday!

15 comments:

  1. Well, I just read the entire "long, boring story" and I smiled at the end so I call it a win! (Sometimes I simply get excited over the "not-a-big-deal-to-anyone-else" things too.... ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, totally not a big deal to anyone but me, but I was thrilled! Haha :)

      Delete
  2. Congrats what a great deal, that never happened to me before. I'll admit though - feeling a bit sad for Jerry not getting anything out of his miles.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In our house, if this was my husband or my situations we'd just be glad we weren't paying $600 for a flight we wanted to take anyway. :)

      Glad everything worked out great, Katie!

      Delete
    2. Yes, Sara, Jerry was thrilled! We had budgeted $400 for my ticket, so by using our miles instead, we now have $400 for spending money in Vegas this November ;)

      Delete
  3. I am so glad this worked out for you!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Not a boring story at all. And a happy ending! Those are the best kind. Have a wonderful time in Portland!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Your long,boring story just saved me $437!!! I was planning on paying $437 to transfer miles from my AA account to my husbands, so that he could purchase a ticket for Hawaii. We purchased one way on my account and one way on his. Never thought of that, so thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Holy smokes, that's AWESOME!! Isn't it insane that they make you pay so much to transfer miles to a SPOUSE? I'm glad I could help :)

      Delete
  6. That wasn't boring at all. I'm just so thrilled to hear from you two days in a row! I don't check on consecutive days anymore because your posts are not that frequent but each day that I do check, I mentally cross my fingers that there will be a new post. I know that you are doing what works best for you and that is exactly right but I do miss the daily blog, it was a fun part of my own daily routine. I wouldn't let myself visit runsforcookies until all of my house chores and other things were done, this blog was my reward! I value all of your posts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow--what a fantastic compliment! I do miss blogging daily sometimes, but I just haven't been doing much worth blogging about, unfortunately ;) Thank you for being such a loyal reader! xo

      Delete
    2. I like posts like this and find them to be just as valuable as ones discussing training/diet plans. You are so relateble and since we are all more than the sum of our calories counted and miles ran, hearing about your day-to-day reminds me that you aren't any different from me and I can do it too! It's easy to read blogs dedicated to something like weight management or fitness and convince myself that they are successful because of x,y, or z, which doesn't apply to me, so I give myself an excuse to fail at it. But you're Katie, totally normal, no excuses Katie! I lost 60 pounds 4-5 years ago and your blog was an integral part of my motivation system. I'm in maintenance right along with you. I enjoy whatever crumbs runsforcookies chooses to share. xo

      Delete
    3. I second that, Lindy! Katie, your posts always go up after I go to bed, so when I check my email first thing in the morning, I love seeing a RfC email in my inbox :) Brightens my morning!

      Delete

I'd love to hear from you! I read all of my comments, and if you have a question, I do my best to respond; sometimes, however, I get busy and forget to go back to reply, so if it's important, just email me! :)