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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Mid-Year 2016 Travel Check-in

It's over the halfway point for the year, though I thought it might be helpful to do a quick check-in on my travel and re-qualifications so far.  It's been a different year with less cross-country travel so earning EQM's has been more difficult.  Not sure if that's going to get any better in the near term.


I've been enjoying Exec Plat this year and have really made use of the Same Day Standby and Flight Change options when applicable.  Normally that would cost about $75 an instance so I'm getting great value along with frequent upgrades.  Unfortunately, my overall accrual is way down - reaching Platinum won't be an issue, but my days of Exec Plat are probably ending.  With the addition of fare dollar-requirements for next year ($10k for Exec Plat!) I may never get the status again.


There have been a few reasons to fly United this year and I have to say it's been nice to be back those times.  For a few years United was my top choice.  I was able to snag a promotion to Silver status for the rest of the year though my chances of requal are slim.  Dining and credit card use are still my prime ways to get miles (and flying Star Alliance to Europe still is the easiest!)


Diamond status has been a great perk for this year and the bonuses alone make stays that much better.  Free breakfast doesn't hurt either.  I'm about half way on requalifying though I'm fairly certain I won't make it unless more options come available.  If I had a choice I'd requal on American or United before Hyatt in the next year for sake of value.

Overall I'm satisfied with my travel so far for this year - it would be nice to get one more year of top status on American though not a necessity.  Credit cards are becoming a much more viable way to offset access to elite benefits and normal daily credit card spend to acquire points and miles are really the way to go.

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