Aight so boom … as many of you may know, I daveled in the word of credit cards preceding the unannounced pandemic in early 2020. My goal was to use my everyday spending to earn bonuses from credit card companies, and then use those bonus points/cash back/credits to travel the summer of 2020. UNFORTUNATELY, that powers that be locked us down shortly after I crafted my master plan, and like many of you, I went ALMOST nowhere.
Lets get into the story … how I traveled from Florida to Houston for the FREEEEEEE!!!
First and foremost, we riding Spirit Airlines faithfully around this muafxcker .. ON GAWD!! Follow this Spirit Airlines Guide:
- Visit Spirit.Com and look up flight times and dates; Spirit flies into IAH (George Bush Intercontinental Airport) in Houston.
- Visit your local airport, park in Short Term Parking. In most places, this is free for a certain amount of time. Anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour.
- Purchase your ticket from the Spirit Ticket counter, and save maybe $30-$40 .. I honestly don’t know the actual amount.. but its somewhere around that range.
So to continue .. somehow … I ended up finding a $56 (w/ the discount listed above) round trip ticket to and from Houston, Thursday to Sunday. Keep in mind, this is January 2021, therefore pre “the world opening back up” prices were still in effect.
But Mac, how is it FREE if you paid $56?!!? … if you’ll STFU and let me finish you’ll know .. rude azz.
Any-who, prior to purchasing my ticket, I applied for Bank of Americas Travel Rewards Credit Card. This card requires that you make $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening, in return you’ll receive 25,000 online bonus points which can be redeemed for a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases.
$250 (Travel Credit) – $56 Flight = $194 left for Rental Car, Hotel, or Future Travel.
Imma be honest w/ y’all boyz … my Hotel wasn’t ALL DAT .. and for that reason I WILL NOT be disclosing the brand and/or company. I can tell you this, it was in the 3rd ward close to the other Airport, Houston William P. Hobby. In my attempt to be in proximity with my visiting party, I ended up booking a hotel in a not so touristy area. So I wouldn’t call it bad, but I will say its much more residential than it is for tourist. If you’re planning to visit Houston I would consider staying either downtown or the galleria area. As I recall, the prices were about the same.
So .. the room was around $80 a night, which from what I can see was standard for 3 stars in Houston that weekend. $80 x 3 Nights = $240 plus tax.
… so Mac .. how is it free if you paid $240 for it!?!?
Well, Mid 2020 I applied for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card, which at the time had a bonus of 60k points for spending $4000 in 3 months, which when redeemed for Travel comes out to about $1000 – $1200. I booked the hotel via the Chase Portal for about 24kish points .. or something like that … I would look it up but Im lazy .. so.
$1000 – $240 = $760 left for Rental Car, Hotel, or Future Travel
I’m the kinda guy, that hates being stuck somewhere without being able to exit when I feel like it. Also, having visited Houston before, I was aware has to how BIG this city actually is. It is literally a huge circle, everything is 30 to 45 minutes away from everything.
Furthermore, being that I was there for a bachelor party, it actually came in handy for transporting everyone flying into IAH, to where we were located.
The car was a midsize, 3 days for around 10,000 points, so somewhere around $130.
$760 – $130 = $630 remaining for Future Travel.
In summation, using my everyday spending I was able to apply for 2 Credit Cards which rewarded me around $1300 to $1500 in travel benefits. Out of that amount, I’ve spent around $430 on at the least getting there, housing and transportation. If you decide to do the same (this is not financial advise), keep ion mind to pay your balance off on time every month to avoid any interest and/or late payment fees. By following this method, you can book a decent trip somewhere, simply spending the money that you already was going to spend.
Car Rental: $130
I’ll tell you what though … parking in Houston … is a BIIIIIHHHHH!!! I had to spend around $100 alone, just in parking in one night of venue hopping.
Notable Spots Visited
- Turkey Leg Hut – Favorite sport every on life .. if you know me, you already knew this. You will wait in line .. for a few hours! Make sure ya phone charged.
- Frenchies – Fried Chicken Conissuer
- Lucilles – Expensive, but the food is A1!
- Atomic Bottle – $20 Parking, but a nice lil indoor/outdoor vibe.
- Area 29 – Skrip Club, felt like I was back at the crib the way the DJ was playing Jeezy!