Getting Started with

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  Home helps you become an expert at saving money on all your trips, getting the most from travel reward programs, and unlocking free travel and valuable benefits from travel and reward credit cards.

This page will help you find your way around the site.

Getting started: 8 simple steps for cheaper and better travel

Not everyone wants to spend a lot of time and energy becoming an expert. A few simple strategies require very little effort, will make a big impact on your travel, and work for almost everyone. They are a great place to get started.

Collecting credit card signup bonuses

If you are willing to move beyond our simple plan, the most valuable "next step" is to start collecting signup bonuses. You can sign up for one credit card after another, to earn their often lucrative signup bonuses. Contrary to popular belief, it wont' kill your credit rating—it is more likely to improve it.

As long as you don't have a problem handling credit, this is the easiest way to generate hundreds of thousands of reward points that can be used for free airplane tickets and hotel rooms.

Get the most from travel reward programs


Frequent flyer and hotel programs let you travel more often or more luxuriously. But, frequent flyer programs, in particular, can be difficult to take advantage of. Our Step-by-Step Guide to Booking Award Tickets provides the advice you need to actually find available award space and get the most out of your frequent flyer miles. If you don't already understand the basics of frequent flyer miles and airline alliances, read the background information in our Award Tickets 101: The Basics guide first.

Fortunately, taking advantage of hotel reward programs is a lot easier. Get Free Hotel Nights with Hotel Points and Certificates provides all the details you need to use hotel loyalty programs to book free nights.

Beyond the basics, there are many strategies that can help you get more out of frequent flyer and hotel programs.

More advanced strategies

When you are ready to dig a little deeper, you can learn about some of the more advanced strategies for better and cheaper travel.

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