In February, my family faced a terrible situation. A close (young) family member only had days to live–at most. And we needed to get out there as fast as possible.
A quick flight search showed prices in the thousands for a last second flight. But when we searched using miles, we were able to find award availability and get out there right away.
A couple of years ago, my figure skating coach died. I don’t know if you know this, but I was a competitive figure skater for a while, and spent a lot of my life competing and practicing to compete.
When I found out she had passed, I wanted to get to my hometown ASAP. So I just trusted in my miles.
I hopped in a cab and headed for the airport. While in the cab, I booked an award trip to New York.
Once I got to the airport, I was able to move that flight up to one that got me there even earlier. And I was able to meet up with her other figure skaters, who were also grieving for her.
Miles were really powerful because I was able to assume I would be able to get there. I never let my miles run low, so even if it took a lot of miles, I knew it was possible.
Miles have made it possible for me to be agile in emergencies.
So even though this “miles and points” game can seem pretty cold and calculated, it can allow you to make judgement calls that would otherwise be very difficult if you were paying cash.