Awesome Things, Value From Hilton and Hyatt Points, Win SPG Points, and a New Finance Blog

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1. 1000 Awesome Things

This is such a fun blog.

A guy named Neil is working on a list of 1000 things that are… awesome. And no corner of life is left unexplored.

He’s got 161 left to go, so there’s plenty to read and lot more to look forward to. Instantly added it to my feedly. I think anyone can find something they appreciate there.

2. Virgos are having a great month

If you’re a Virgo, this is a pretty good time to be alive. For the first time in 12 years, Virgos are experiencing a solar return.

Susan Miller explains this much better than I do

Susan Miller explains this much better than I do

What’s that mean? I’ll let Susan Miller explain it. But it basically means this year is dipped in gold for the Virgo-folk out there.

I’ve experienced a turning point this month already, and things are always on the up and up.

I check in with Susan each month on Astrology Zone, as her horoscopes, whether you’re “into” astrology or not, are simply a delight to read. Her voice is so kind and knowledgeable. Love it.

3. TPG digs into Hilton

Richard from The Points Guy wrote a thorough and detailed post about Hilton points.

A great read!

I didn’t know about Hilton Points & Money awards, tbh. It’s no Starwood Points & Cash, where you can routinely get 4+ cents per dollar of value. But it’s a good option to have if the value proposition works out.

Which kind of unleashes why I’m liking my little stash of Hilton points now: they’re so easy to earn. Compare that with Starwood, whose points accrue at the pace of a diseased crawl.

I appreciate the thought and effort that went into this post. Added it right into my Evernote.

Oh, and definitely agree about Hilton Gold status. Worth having even for occasional Hilton visitors.

4. 1 best thing about each points and miles program

Travel Is Free endeavored to find the best use of points for each mileage program.

I’d have to agree, mostly.

AA off-peak dates

AA off-peak dates

I personally think the best use of AA miles is off-peak to the Caribbean and Mexico for 12,500 miles each way, though the dates are more limited. With Europe, off-peak is over half the year and 20,000 miles each way.

Why? Simply because of prices. Flights to the Caribbean can be freaking expensive.

I’d also argue the best use of Hyatt points is low- and mid-tier propertiesnot the hotels that go for 25,000 points per night.

In his example, you’ll pay 25,000 points for a room that goes for ~$1,000+ per night AKA 4 cents of value per point.

asd

I’d rather use points at low-tier hotels

I’d rather use 5,000 points for a Category 1 hotel like the Hyatt House Dallas/Uptown (review coming soon!) that goes for ~$200 a night.

asd

And get the same value

But ya know what? That’s still ~4 cents of value per point.

So it’s a case of different strokes for different folks. As always, it depends on what you value.

And yeah, I’d totally spend that many points for a special occasion or super romantic getaway. But for regular travel with Hyatt, I like to stick to the lower end, like when I stayed at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans, Hyatt French Quarter, or Hyatt Regency Boston.

I agree with him about Hilton, though. I’m quickly finding you can get damn near 2 cents of value from a Hilton point, especially at Category 1 and 2 hotels.

2015-09-09_21-44-38

There are good uses for Hilton points… and value to be had!

A night at the Hampton Inn & Suites Mexico City is $159 or 10,000 Hilton points. So… ~1.6 cents per Hilton point. Which is very good all on its own.

But, with Hilton’s 5th night free on award stays, you’d pay 40,000 Hilton points for a stay valued at ~$800, which is right around 2 cents per point.

Considering the sign-up bonus on the Citi Hilton Visa is 75,000 points right now, and has no annual fee, you could nearly get 2 five-night stays at Hilton Category 2 hotels and get ~$1,600 worth of value per the quick off-the-cuff example above.

That’s a really good deal for any sign-up bonus, and especially for points that are generally considered useless. I like finding the value in things, and, as Warren Buffet says, when everyone else zigs, you gotta zag!

Oh, and because it’s a Citi card, be on the lookout for new Citi Offers soon!

5. Sex Health Money Death

A new personal finance blog. I know what you’re thinkin’ – not another one!

<3

<3

The spirit and tone of Sex Health Money Death is refreshing.

In the race toward FIRE, this blog stops and says, “What’s it all for?” and “Why?” – in a darkly hilarious way, which makes it all the better.

I love the feeling of catching a well-written blog at the beginning. If you’re into personal finance, definitely give this one a read-through!

HT: Thank you to George from Travel Blogger Buzz for turning me on to this!

6. Starwood’s Open the World Game

Even though I don’t care about Starpoints, I’ve been giving this little game a go each morning (it goes through September 30th). Apparently, you can win Starwood points or “instant prizes.” So far, I’ve turned up nothing.

Hey, ya never know

Hey, ya never know

Who knows, maybe I’ll hit the jackpot and have a stay so amazing it makes me rethink Starwood.

Until then, I’ll ride my little Hilton/IHG/Hyatt train while the gettin’s still good.

Good luck if you play – let me know if you win anything!

lolerz

#truth

Oh, and check out these hilariously depressing motivational posters. I lol’d.

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Dallas.

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