Unfortunately, Santa doesn't come around much anymore. Sure he made an appearance a couple of years ago in the form of Expedia handing out free Christmas vacations, but last year he skipped our house (I suspect he read about my stretching the truth at hotel check-in and put us on the naughty list) so we were left to fend for ourselves. This year I don't see a return to the nice list as imminent (for reasons that I choose not to disclose here), so we're making our own plans. Unfortunately, flights and hotels in tropical destinations are way out of our budget during the Christmas season, which means that if I want to make this happen, I'm going to have to spend some of my beloved points.
That's probably why I have such a hard time spending them. I long ago got used to seeing the occasional negative sign in front of my bank balance, but my heart breaks just a little every time one of my mileage balances approaches the zero mark. I'm insanely jealous of my American friends who can restock any mileage plan they choose by simply opening a new credit card, but I've had to earn my points the old fashioned way. The way of our ancestors. I had to hotel hop.
Still, if spending a few of these points is what it's going to take to make this vacation happen, then I guess I'll have to do it. Miles are like money in that having them is great, but the real enjoyment comes in spending them. Just know that while my family is enjoying their "free" vacation, I'll be cringing a little bit inside knowing that my points balances have plummeted and it's going to take a little time to get them back up, even if Lori does charge everything more expensive than a Churro to our credit card. No point charging Churros though. Despite my brilliant arguments, our bank still refuses to recognize Churros as a necessary grocery item, thus qualifying them for double points. No wonder people say the banks are out of touch.
Written by Steve Pratt