The Point Hoarder
For those that know me, I’m always looking for ways to get more points and I’m willing to do (almost) anything for it!
With this newsletter, I wanted to let you guys in on a few secrets I’ve been taking advantage of to get points without spending a dime. This may be a bit region specific with me being in Canada and the travel partners I use but I’d love to hear your thoughts on any hacks you’ve found.
- For awhile I was exploiting the TopGuest DoubleTree check-in with FourSquare for 50 points a check in but since TopGuest got bought out, they put an end to that.
- e-Rewards Opinion Panel
- Survey platform where you fill out surveys for e-Rewards $$. Different surveys give you different amounts.
- If you don’t qualify for the survey, you still get a minimum reward amount.
- Once you accrue $125, you can convert that to 7000 Points. There are lesser levels of conversion as well.
- I joined Nov 2013 and by Feb 2014 I was able to convert the credit I earned from doing surveys to get 7000 HHonors points. Not bad for 3 months of survey work.
- Point transfer took less than a week.
- Cost me nothing except time and effort.
- US Based.
- Similar to e-Rewards but it’s not so much about filling out surveys. They want you to watching ads, taking surveys, and making donations to charitable organizations.
- What I do is I just watch whatever they want me to watch but don’t take any action. Even if you do nothing you’ll usually get 5 miles.
- 500 e-miles can be converted to 1,000 Hilton HHonors points.
- US Based.
- Turns out this offer expired April 12, 2014 so sadly this isn’t in play unless they bring it back
Okay so this one I cheated a little because it does cost you something but if you’re going to buy something at Gilt anyways… Now this is a new one for me this year but if you haven’t signed up for Gilt, you should definitely look into this one to get 2000 points. Your first purchase of $50 US or more will get you 2000 HHonors points Any additional spend you make in the first six months ONLY will get you 6 points per $1 spent.
- Hilton HHonors Dining
- I suppose I should rename this post to “Free HHonors Points without spending an extra dime”? Just think of these offers as restaurants you might be going to anyways.
- This one’s also new to me this year. The gist is that once you sign up and link a few credit cards to your account, anytime you dine at a restaurant that’s on their list, you get anywhere from 2, 5 to 8 HHonors points for each $1 spent there.
- New members can earn 1,000 bonus points after spending $30 on a single dine within 30 days and completing a review.
- US based as all restaurants are in the US.
- Alamo Car Rental
- Through June 30, 2014, HHonors members save up to 25% and earn up to 1,500 HHonors points per rental. Use Contract ID 7015298 during booking.
- When signing up for Alamo’s Insiders program, make sure you put in your HHonors number in the reward preferences.
- National Car Rental
- Through June 30, 2014, save up to 25% and earn up to 1,500 HHonors points on car rentals.
- When signing up for National’s Emerald program, make sure you put in your HHonors number in the reward preferences. Do note that they do charge a $0.75 per day surcharge when you choose the miles/points rewards option.
- BONUS: Free Gold status – Prior to 2013, getting Gold status via Visa Infinite actually wasn’t that hard. This year, 2014, they’ve made it a little more difficult but it’s still possible if you fit 2 different groups of people.
- Do you live in Asia? Go to Visa Infinite and call the concierge to be get you instantly to Gold status with HHonors.
- Are you an MBA graduate from one of these US schools in 2014? LoyaltyLobby has written quite the detailed post on how Hilton has sent out targetted e-mails to MBA graduates. If you’re one of them, you could be eligible for Gold status for up to 20 years. Crazy right?
- SUPER BONUS: Looking to join the HHonors program? If so, send me your email and I can send you a referral. The way it works is that on your second stay with any Hilton property you’ll get a bonus 1,000 bonus points!
- Asking Canadians
- Similar to e-Rewards except catered to Canadians. Surveys are similar as well.
- Difference is that each survey you fill out has specific Aeroplan points associated to it if you complete it. If you don’t qualify you’ll always get a minimum of 5 Aeroplan points
- Takes roughly 3-4 weeks for the points to transfer.
- Over the last 12 months, I’ve accumulated 5715 Aeroplan points simply by completing surveys.
- Survey lengths range from 10 minutes to 40 minutes though how quickly you whip through them is up to you ;)
- Aeroplan Advisors
- I’m in the process of joining this group. It is on an invite-only basis.
- The idea is that you complete Aeroplan specific surveys and in return you get points.
- I was never invited so I actually went to their help section and submitted a ticket and they said they’d try to get me into their next batch of invites.
- Update: It worked! One of the guys responsible for inviting new folks said they don’t normally do this but they’ll let me. I’m part of the group now.
The credit card game
- This may not be for everyone but credit card bonuses have probably been my best way to get free points really quickly.
- There may be a minimum spend associated to this (i.e. $500 or $1000 in the first 3-5 months)
- Minimum spend aside, you can quickly jump up 20,000 to 40,000 points. Learn how you can do this by seeing what the best travel hacking credit cards for Canadians are.
- So definitely see what’s available in your area!
I hope you found this useful. A lot of these methods are long-term plays as it could take you months of work to get your points but I say it’s worth it for the thousands of points I’ve been able to get without spending a dime.