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FlyerTalk Forums Thread Wiki: Chicago Seminars October 14-16th, 2016
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Last edit by: Renes Points
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Dates for 2017 event are: Oct 20-22, 2017

* Event Registration: http://chicagoseminars2016.eventbrite.com - lunch and daily snacks are included in registration (breakfast is NOT included in registration ... see below)
* Hotel registration is live in post # 2. Breakfast for 1 is included in room rate if booked using seminar code.
* Schedule of weekend events is in post #3.
* Current event sponsors in post #4 (and email provided if someone is interested in sponsoring)
* Some info re: charity raffle is in post #5.
* Request for volunteers is in post #6. (volunteers get a thanks & handshake - and an apple).
* A full list of the current speakers is in post #7
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Old Jan 9, 16, 8:21 pm   #1
Company Representative: AwardWallet
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: SAV
Programs: DL PM, SPG PLT
Posts: 776
Chicago Seminars October 14-16th, 2016

If you want some history on the event take a look at the 2015 thread or previously linked threads. This is the 7th year for this event

Last year we raised over $20,000 for charity and based on the feedback from attendees, sponsors and speakers it was a great success.

Same format, same venue.

Registration: http://chicagoseminars2016.eventbrite.com

Last edited by thehowieee; May 5, 16 at 10:30 am
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Old Jan 9, 16, 8:21 pm   #2
Company Representative: AwardWallet
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Hotel Registration Information

Holiday Inn Elk Grove Village

Group Code is CHI

Overflow hotel is La Quinta Inn ORD - http://www.laquintachicagoohareairport.com/

Overflow hotel has been a bit of a challenge this year. While transportation will be provided between the properties, we're having a challenge getting online booking properly setup. Updates as they come.

Last edited by thehowieee; Aug 4, 16 at 4:24 pm
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Old Jan 9, 16, 8:22 pm   #3
Company Representative: AwardWallet
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: SAV
Programs: DL PM, SPG PLT
Posts: 776
Event Schedule

FRIDAY OCTOBER 14TH

4pm - 8pm - Registration Desk Open

5pm - 6pm - Welcome to Chicago Seminars & Everything You’re Too Embarrassed to Ask About Points & Miles (thehowieee / FrugalTravelGuy) - An Introduction to the Chicago Seminars and an open forum to ask any question that comes to mind.

615pm - 715pm

Introduction to Mileage Runs with Rene (Rene / RenesPoints) - What is a Mileage Run? Why a "MR" can still be worthwhile under revenue based programs. How to find a MR and position to a "start city" for very little.

Booking Travel for Five or More (Dave / Bikeguy) - When you're a solo traveler or a couple looking to cash in miles you often have struggles with finding just the right flights ... but what about trying to make it happen for five or more people?

Become an Expert with ExpertFlyer (Chris / ExpertFlyer.com)

730pm - 830pm

Introduction to Manufactured Spending (Rene / RenesPoints) - A beginners look answering the questions What is Manufactured Spending? What are the different types, risks and rewards of "MS"? Can this help me travel for less?

Bookings with Aeroplan (Miguel / PMMTravelConsulting.com) - With access to Star Alliance members award availability, an attractive award chart and as both an Amex and an SPG transfer partner, Air Canada's Aeroplan is among the most underrated rewards programs out there. Join us to learn more about the myths and facts about this wonderful rewards program.

Mythbusters: Miles & Points Edition (Angelina / Angelina Travels) - An interactive discussion where miles & points myths and urban legends are put to the test. There’s no “one size fits all” approach to earning and redeeming miles. With so many rules and theories comes tons of misconceptions. Learn all about “rules” of the game (hint: lots can be broken).

SATURDAY OCTOBER 15TH

8am - 12pm - Registration Desk Open

830am - 930am - Credit Cards with Howie from AwardWallet - Just a guy with a wife and a dog with more than the average number of credit cards, points and miles.

945am - 1045am

Begin with the End in Mind (Dan Miller / Points with a Crew) - Confused about all the different credit card possibilities? Overwhelmed between Skymiles, Ultimate Rewards, Hilton HHonors, Arrival miles and other different currencies and not sure where to start? Begin with the end in mind - first, figure out WHERE you want to go, and only THEN apply for the cards that can get you there. It doesn't work to get a Skymiles credit card if only American flies where you want to go, and you can't apply for a Marriott card if you want to stay at a Hyatt. Walk through 2 real-life examples of how to pick a destination, and figure out the cards to get you there for free.

Advanced Credit Cards (Stefan / Rapid Travel Chai) - Banks are getting smart so we need to be smarter. Learn the latest developments and techniques for maximizing credit card rewards and benefits. Explore little known cards, cards for heavy manufactured spend, and more.

AA Live Booking (Scott / MileValue) - A step-by-step live demonstration of a booking using American Airlines miles. Using an example routing, I will look at the award chart to find the price, consult the award rules to determine valid routings, find the useful partners, search for award space on the appropriate search engines (using advanced searching techniques when necessary), and call American Airlines to put the award on hold (if technologically feasible.)

11am - 12p

The first 90 Days in the Points and Miles World (Shawn / Miles to Memories) - New to the miles & points world? With so many banks, credit cards and travel loyalty programs, the amount of information can be overwhelming at times. Find out what you need to know to get started on the path towards realizing your travel dreams.

Valuable Perks & Gems That No One Really Talks About (Angelina / Angelina Travels) - A collection of little travel tips, tricks, and tidbits that can enhance your travel experience forever. Credit card perks that earn you $$, when and how you can get compensated for a delayed or canceled flights (even years after!), retaining top-tier status through free status matching, maximizing hotel savings (and free nights!) through BRG strategies, etc.

Travel for Free Without Credit Cards (Drew / Travel is Free) - Besides applying for credit cards and using points, turns out there's a lot of other ways to travel for free. Lesser known promotions, sites and tricks to get free travel.

12pm - 1pm - Lunch

1pm - 215pm

Beginner and Intermediate Reselling for Profit and Points (Shawn / Miles to Memories) - Learn the basics of reselling merchandise online on eBay and Amazon. Find out which credit card is a must for any reseller and learn techniques for maximizing profit and the amount of points earned.

Booking your first award (Tiffany / One Mile at a Time) - The fundamentals needed to book your first award ticket, including understanding alliances and partnerships, general tactics for finding award space, and what to expect when it's time to use your miles.

Earning Points and Free Travel Through Unique Promotions (Jen / Deals We Like) - Learn about unique ways to earn points, free hotel rooms, and free flights that do not include flying, staying at a hotel, or even signing up for a credit card. This session will show you how to take advantage and maximize this "outside the box" methods. Some examples include mail-in entry promotions (where you do not even have to leave the house!) and purchasing random qualifying items at drug stores! Everyone qualifies for these promotions and you do not have to be a frequent flier to maximize your free points and travel!

230pm - 345pm

15 Dos and Donts When Applying for Credit Cards & Redeeming Awards (Daraius / Million Mile Secrets) - Rules to live by when it comes to getting the right credit cards and then cashing in for epic redemptions.

Award Chart Sweet Spots (Scott / MileValue) - Whether you dream of a huge, round-the-world trip or just want to find the best use for each of your mileage balances, you need to know the sweet spots on each miles' award charts. This presentation will cover some sweet spots with United, American, Delta, Alaska, Singapore, Korean, Flying Blue and many more miles. Plus there will be example itineraries that string together several miles' sweet spots into amazing trips.

Bookings with Korean Airlines (Miguel / PMMTravelConsulting.com) - Korean Air has arguably the best premium cabin award availability of any airline. Korean also serves more North American destinations than any Asian airline and is both a Chase and SPG transfer partner. As a result, when it comes time to consider award options to Asia, the Middle East, the South Pacific and beyond, Korean should be at the top of your list.

4pm - 5pm

Maximizing Statement Credit Offers and Quarterly 5x Bonus Credit Card Offers (Jen / Deals We Like) - You will be introduced on the many ways to in fact "make money" with various credit cards. This session will take you through statement credit offers, where if you spend "X", you'll receive a "Y" statement credit. Examples include: Amex Offers, BankAmeriDeals, and Citi Smart Savings Offers. Additionally, you will also learn more about maximizing the quarterly 5x bonus offers with the Chase Freedom, Discover it and Citi Dividend cards.

How to Maximize Hotel Points with Category 1 and 2 Redemptions (Dan / Points with a Crew) - It seems that many folks talk about how they stay for free in 5 star hotels using miles and points. And while that is one way to travel, did you know that in some programs, you can get up to 20 nights at a lower level hotel for the SAME amount of points as 1 night at a top-tier hotel. And we're not talking about roach motels here - these can be some pretty nice places! Learn how to maximize your hotel points with Category 1 and 2 redemptions.

Traveling to Cuba (Emily / Million Mile Secrets) - A long-time hotspot for anyone but Americans, access to Cuba is becoming easier if you're from the U.S. but is it ready for an influx? Learn from someone that has been to Cuba as she shares her story on Cuba.

515pm - 615pm

Redeeming Miles with Non-Alliance Airlines (Tiffany / One Mile at a Time) - You know about oneworld, Star Alliance and SkyTeam, but what about all the other airlines that don't belong to an alliance? Airlines like Alaska and Emirates ...

101 Tips, Tricks and Hacks to be an Expert Traveler (Stefan / Rapid Travel Chai) - A fun, practical romp through the world of travel in 101 tips from miles and points to what to do on the road to be an expert traveler. If you've never had a layover in a Japanese love hotel, this session is for you!

Getting the Most Free Nights with Each Hotel Chain (Drew / Travel is Free) - Learn how to get the most free nights out of every hotel loyalty program.

7pm - 8pm

Happy Hour / Reception in Woodfield Ballroom

SUNDAY OCTOBER 16TH (All Sunday Sessions are open to all)

8am - 9am - Open Panel Discussion on Credit Cards

9am - 10am - Sponsors Workshop

10am - 11am - Charity Raffle

1115am - 1215pm - Hotel Breakouts

1215pm - 115pm - Lunch

115pm - 230pm - Airline Breakouts

245pm - 4pm - Event Closing & Open Panel on Everything Else

Last edited by thehowieee; Oct 14, 16 at 4:24 am
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Old Jan 9, 16, 8:22 pm   #4
Company Representative: AwardWallet
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: SAV
Programs: DL PM, SPG PLT
Posts: 776
Sponsors

Our event sponsors are:

AwardWallet
ExpertFlyer
MillionMileSecrets
The Plastic Merchant



We have room for 8. Please contact chicagoseminars2016@gmail.com if you're interested in sponsoring.

Last edited by thehowieee; Jun 11, 16 at 8:22 am
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Old Jan 9, 16, 8:23 pm   #5
Company Representative: AwardWallet
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Join Date: Feb 2008
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Programs: DL PM, SPG PLT
Posts: 776
Charity Raffle & Donations

"Hi everyone! Yup, it's me - SkiAdcock, the Charity Raffle Queen, the one who runs around yelling ge-e-e-t your tickets, ge-e-e-t your tickets!

Once again we'll have great prizes, and in addition to cash we will accept credit cards via the square or PayPal app.

Prizes to be detailed as seminar gets closer. In years past we've had such things as Kindles, free nights at Marriotts in NYC & Vegas, 50% off Starwood stays, AA & UA systemwide int'l upgrades, etc. We expect to have even more great prizes this year!

If you have something you would like to donate to the charity raffle, please PM me (SkiAdcock).

Yes I'll need volunteers to help w/ ticket sales and/or distributing prizes on Sunday. Volunteers do not miss any sessions, as sales occur in between sessions. If you're interested in volunteering w/ charity raffle, PM me (SkiAdcock).

We pick 3 great charities each year, and monies raised are divided between them. We owe it all to you, our generous FT/IF/blog followers!

Each year we've beat the previous record of what was donated. Let the FT Chicago Seminar Event Charity Raffle tradition continue!"

Cheers.

Last edited by thehowieee; Apr 29, 16 at 12:29 pm
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Old Jan 9, 16, 8:24 pm   #6
Company Representative: AwardWallet
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: SAV
Programs: DL PM, SPG PLT
Posts: 776
Opportunities to Volunteer

Just as an FYI for anyone wondering, volunteers do not get free registration. As a volunteer you get a firm handshake and a thank you.. Please email chicagoseminars2016@gmail.com if you'd like to help out and with what.

Registration
Friday:
4pm - 6pm -- Scott Grimmer, Eric, BrandiParshley
6pm - 8pm -- John L., Prat (1 more needed)

Saturday:
8a - 945a -- BrandiParshley, Carol (znke252)
945a - 11a -- 2 people needed
11a - 12p -- 2 people needed

Projector / Tech Support:
Gareth

Breakout Session Moderators / Leaders:
Airline:
American -- FlyerBeek
Delta -- John aka John DELTA
Southwest --
United --
International & Others -- Stefan / Rapid Travel Chai

Hotel:
Hilton --
Hyatt -- John aka John DELTA
IHG -- Stefan from Rapid Travel Chai
Marriott -- SkiAdcock
Starwood -- Tiffany / One Mile at a Time

Apples - Mark

Last edited by thehowieee; Oct 10, 16 at 9:58 am
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Old Jan 9, 16, 9:16 pm   #7
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Join Date: Aug 2009
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Posts: 3,507
Can't wait for another amazing year in Chicago with all the changes to the game in 2016!

It looks like our current list of speakers to look forward to is:

  • Dave aka Bikeguy of FlyerTalk

Last edited by Renes Points; Jul 19, 16 at 1:13 pm Reason: added speakers list
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Old Jan 9, 16, 9:38 pm   #8
pkk
  
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Posts: 28
It's on my calendar. Looking forward to it!

Last edited by pkk; Apr 16, 16 at 11:34 pm
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Old Jan 9, 16, 9:39 pm   #9
formerly FlyingExplorer
  
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Posts: 578
Looking forward to it.
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Old Jan 10, 16, 12:30 am   #10
  
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So now that Amex has shut down many of the Bloggers who give talks, will be interesting on the new topics this year..
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Old Jan 10, 16, 7:18 am   #11
  
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On my calendar, looking forward to it.
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Old Jan 10, 16, 8:51 am   #12
  
Join Date: Aug 2013
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Posts: 246
Nooooo... One of the biggest deadlines in my business is October 17th, so I'm not going to be able to make it this year
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Old Jan 10, 16, 9:11 am   #13
  
Join Date: Mar 2013
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Woot!
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Old Jan 11, 16, 7:22 am   #14
  
Join Date: Jul 2015
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Looking forward to it!

It's on my calendar.
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Old Jan 11, 16, 8:22 am   #15
  
Join Date: Feb 2014
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Posts: 93
Looking forward to it! I would be willing to lead the Hyatt Roundtable if needed, too.
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