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looking for a mentor

looking for a mentor

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Old Jul 8, 08, 7:43 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2008
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looking for a mentor

Just joined yesterday. I have learned so much from reading the forum and thought it was time to dive in. I have done so much reading that sometimes I feel I know just enough to be confused.
Just a little hx..I traveled very little until being diagnosed with advanced stage cancer in 2006. My life changed drastically with that diagnosis. I have found that going to conferences and retreats with other survivors to be the best way to get the support I need to live with cancer stalking me.
Anyway, I need to maximize getting FF so I can make my dreams realities. $$ is slim since I am able to work only parttime and work in children's services.
I need someone that is willing to answer questions and help coach me on steps I can take. So far, all I have done is the Delta car rental promotion.
Any takers?
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Old Jul 8, 08, 8:33 am
  #2  
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Welcome to FlyerTalk. I am veryy sorry to hear about your cancer and wish you the best. You don't have to look for one mentor; here at FT we are all mentors and mentees to one another. We share and we learn; that's why we are here.

OK, a few suggestions:

1. Select a favorite program to concentrate on. That could be an airline that you fly most often and would like to accumulate miles for award tickets. Or it could be Starwood hotel points that could be transferred into miles for quite a few different airline programs. I see that you mentioned Delta car rental. Are you focusing on the Delta Skymiles program?

2. If you pay off your credit card bills every month, then you can select one or a few credit cards that you use to achieve/maximize your miles.

3. The most fun comes from executing a successful Mileage Run. Since you do fly around to conferences and retreats, you can quite easily combine your travel with a mileage run. You can visit the MR forum to get ideas. Also, you can post your destination with a question, and you will find plenty of helpful responses.
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Old Jul 8, 08, 9:47 am
  #3  
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Best wishes from here too. I don't know the specifics of your situation, but my SO is a survivor, as was my mother until something totally unrelated got her, and we have a close friend who's been living with the "big C" for quite a while - so you may have many, many years to travel!

(Welcome to FT, too.)

ChaseTheMiles has good suggestions. A few other thoughts:

- Pick an airline to focus on, for sure. It's hard to accumulate enough miles to be useful without flying, especially if you're not in a position to charge tens of thousands of dollars to credit cards, and nearly (though not totally) impossible to achieve the elite airline status that makes traveling more pleasant. It's much better to earn 30,000 miles in one program than 15,000 each in two.

- You might want to share your FF goals with us, as they can affect the choice. Is it to earn award flights, upgrades, or something else? Also, where are you based, and is there a pattern to the location of the conferences and retreats you'd like to go to? (The type of fare you usually pay can also affect program choice, but in this case it sounds like that would be the lowest fare available.)

- You're now a member of another support group if you want to look at it that way. Many of us besides myself have personal or very close experience with what you're going through. Check out the CommunityBuzz forum for events in your area or that you might want to fly to. Some of them don't have to cost a lot: there's a very cheap introductory fare on Virgin Australia to next May's OzFest 6 in Cairns, Australia, for example.
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Old Jul 8, 08, 8:11 pm
  #4  
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Gosh, thanks so much. I live in Charlotte, NC and seem to fly USAir most of the time. However, I did go out west 2 times this year and accumulated some Delta miles so I did the rental program. However, I had no idea that the car rental co. had to be a corporate office and no idea what that meant, so I may have paid for the rental for nothing.
My immediate need is to get from Charlotte to Missoula Montana for a Sept. 4-8 survivor retreat. If my car rental stuff is corporate, will I get those miles soon enough to use them? My departure and return dates are flexible. My goal is just to get enough miles to save fly. The status stuff sounds great but for now I desperately want this. Plus, I would love to have a goal to do a run. How cool. I can't do a credit card because my husband and I have made a pledge not to due to my medical situation. Any suggestions?
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Old Jul 8, 08, 9:39 pm
  #5  
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For your Delta rental question, please try posting the same question to the Delta Skymiles forum. You might get better responses. I'm sorry I don't know anything about the Delta rental program. Where I have racked up the most Delta miles is through getting the American Express Delta Skymiles credit card and mileage runs. For any of the mileage-earning cards, usually there is a huge singup bonus that's near or equivalent to a free ticket just for getting the card.

Here's a link to a FTer's own personal site that has a lot of helpful tips: http://www.freefrequentflyermiles.com/index.htm
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Old Jul 8, 08, 10:00 pm
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by hinsopa View Post
I can't do a credit card because my husband and I have made a pledge not to due to my medical situation. Any suggestions?
There's a difference between GETTING a credit card and USING a credit card. I've got the Delta Amex, which simply requires you to use it once to earn a 17,500 mile sign-on bonus (plus a free companion certificate). I've also got a NW WorldPerks Visa (20,000 sign-on miles after $500 in spending).

I respect your very responsible decision to avoid taking on debt in light of your present situation, but you must still be buying gas/food/etc. You might as well get something for the spending you are doing in any event.
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Old Jul 27, 08, 3:48 pm
  #7  
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Hi Everyone,
I didn't get any takers for my request for a mentor, so I am back asking questions

I am doing the promotion on Delta;however, my miles weren't posted by budget so I am still bugging them about this. Avis did post. That will not give me enough miles for my trip planned Sept. 8. So, I am having to purchase a ticket and want to be sure I am getting the biggest bang for this expense. Since I have some Delta miles I am thinking I should fly Delta, correct? Is there anything else I can do to make more miles? Any suggestions for a flight ? I appreciate all your help. I belong to almost all the blogs and especially learn from the frugaltravel guy but he hasn't answered my emails. Thanks.
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Old Jul 27, 08, 4:26 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by hinsopa View Post
Hi Everyone,
...
I am doing the promotion on Delta;however, my miles weren't posted by budget so I am still bugging them about this. Avis did post. That will not give me enough miles for my trip planned Sept. 8. So, I am having to purchase a ticket and want to be sure I am getting the biggest bang for this expense. Since I have some Delta miles I am thinking I should fly Delta, correct? Is there anything else I can do to make more miles? Any suggestions for a flight ? I appreciate all your help. I belong to almost all the blogs and especially learn from the frugaltravel guy but he hasn't answered my emails. Thanks.
Yes, if your goal is to accumulate Delta Skymiles, then do everything to get those miles. However, if the ticket is simply too expensive, you could check Priceline and other discount sites to see if you can get a cheap ticket.

I suggest you post the same question to the Delta forum to increase your chance of getting help.

I don't normally track the Delta-Skymiles site, but you might want to check if there is any promotion to register there for bonus miles traveling to/from your destinations.
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Old Jul 27, 08, 5:25 pm
  #9  
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Originally Posted by hinsopa View Post
Hi Everyone,
I didn't get any takers for my request for a mentor, so I am back asking questions

I am doing the promotion on Delta;however, my miles weren't posted by budget so I am still bugging them about this. Avis did post. That will not give me enough miles for my trip planned Sept. 8. So, I am having to purchase a ticket and want to be sure I am getting the biggest bang for this expense. Since I have some Delta miles I am thinking I should fly Delta, correct? Is there anything else I can do to make more miles? Any suggestions for a flight ? I appreciate all your help. I belong to almost all the blogs and especially learn from the frugaltravel guy but he hasn't answered my emails. Thanks.
welcome

even if the miles from Budget had posted , you might have had enough miles for a free coach SkySaver tkt 25k , but that doesnt mean that DL would have been offering any 25k tkts in that mkt when you wanted it or at all.

DL doesnt offer too many 25k tkts they usually offer free tkts at the SkyChoice rate which is 50k and not always to every destination either

Now that you will be purchasing a tkt, dont forget to check out how much NorthWest wants. Either way you will need to make at least 1 stop. And if NW is cheaper you can buy that and always give NW your DL# an dget credit on your DL acct even thou you actually flew NW. A good place to go to see what is being offered is www.orbitz.com , also check any airport that is within x time from CLT. When Im gonna fly somewhere being based in NY, I check all of the following before actually purchasing JFK,LGA,EWR,PHL,BDL (2 1/2 hrs drive, and BWI 4 hr drive.

the other week I needed to get out to PDX it was $1200 from everywhere, BWI was $340, so I drove down to BWI, added appx $50 in gas and still was $800 cheaper then anything else.Whats funny is my 1st flight was flying up to EWR to catch a non-stop out to PDX that would have cost me $800 if I just flew it out of EWR.

w/o looking Id imagine Mt to be a very expensive tkt, not many flights. Sort of like going into Kalispell,Mt its alot cheaper flying into Spokane renting a car and driving the 4 hrs to FCA. thats why I also look at different airports to fly into and not only fly out of.
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Old Jul 29, 08, 5:40 pm
  #10  
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I'd consider it a pleasure to help you along. In years gone by I have mentored many a fellow frequent flyer and so let's start anew with you.

If you'll start to contact me at [email protected] I'll be there to offer up advice, suggest new or different strategies for you and of course, review what decisions you have made and will be making. I think I've got access to everything you might need and of course will share my particular view of things, though often suggesting you compare with your own goals and build from the contrast.

So, let's get going. But don't worry, I'm likely back to this same group and others to fill in the blanks as we go through this project.

Welcome ...

Originally Posted by hinsopa View Post
Hi Everyone,
I didn't get any takers for my request for a mentor, so I am back asking questions
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Old Jul 30, 08, 10:31 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
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You can get a lot of miles for getting an American Express Delta SkyMiles credit card - no fee the first year. You could also get a Gold AMEX Business card and get more miles - also fee free. You will get MQMs, which count toward Silver, Gold and Platinum status. If you got a card and and flew a couple of long trips, you'd have enough miles for a SkySaver award.
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Old Jul 30, 08, 11:57 pm
  #12  
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Best wishes from here.
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Old Jul 31, 08, 4:54 pm
  #13  
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hinsopa,

Hope you take up Randy's offer. In case you didn't know, he's the founder of FlyerTalk.
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Old Jul 31, 08, 5:32 pm
  #14  
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Randy's kind offer

Originally Posted by ChaseTheMiles View Post
hinsopa,

Hope you take up Randy's offer. In case you didn't know, he's the founder of FlyerTalk.
I was so excited and emailed him immediately!
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