What is “The Hobby” ? Well it is a way to utilize multiple credit cards to gain air miles / points which can then be used for Airline or Hotel upgrades or in some cases free services. “The Hobby” aka Gaming the Airlines has been around for years but with the recent Rolling Stone Article on Ben Schlappig “The Hobby” is again gaining more media attention and new followers. The article focused on Ben traveling the world for free. Nothing is exactly for free as Ben states in a recent blog post. You must after all use your credit cards and make purchases to gain miles / points. Being selective in the credit cards you choose can gain you $1 -$2 points for every $1 you spend. To start “The Hobby” you don’t need a perfect credit score however to really take advantage credit card signing bonus points,sometimes up to 40,000, you really need to have an excellent credit score. You must also be in a financial position to pay off the cards monthly to avoid being charged percentage rates. I have included links below to help you get started and master “The Hobby”.
Free Credit Scores
- Clark Howards Free Credit Report Guide
- Credit Sesame – Review from Doctor of Credit
- Credit Sesame – Free Credit Report
How does Credit Sesame make money? They make money a number of ways. When you sign up and receive your credit score they will suggest various credit cards based on your credit score. Then with every credit card you sign with through their system they receive a fee. Lastly they sell your credit score to other companies wanting to offer you credit. That’s how they are able to offer you the free service.
Tracking your Credit Cards
- How to keep track of your spending on Multiple Credit Cards
- The No-Nonsence Guide to Budgeting Multiple Credit Cards
- Frugal Travel Guy Wallet
- Mint allows you to see all of your accounts on its website and analyse your spending habits.
Websites for mastering “The Hobby”
- http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.com/ – Online 1 year.
- http://thepointsguy.com/ – Online 5 years.
- http://www.frugaltravelguy.com/ – Online 7 years.
- http://www.expertflyer.com/ – Online 11 years.
- http://boardingarea.com/ – Online 14 years.
- http://www.farecompare.com/travel-advice/the-best-free-websites-for-frequent-flyers/#/ – Online 14 years.
- http://www.flyertalk.com/ – Online 15 years.
- http://www.insideflyer.com/ – Online 18 years.
- http://www.webflyer.com/ – Online 18 years
Including Andy Graham because he’s a friend and gives some of the best advice on Traveling on the planet. It’s also a great way to meet and connect with fellow travelers. http://www.hobotraveler.com/ – Online 17 years & still going strong.
Greg doesn’t talk about travel much but he’s got the sensibility of a world traveler. Here he makes fun of the multitude of services on a Cruise ship. He really love’s cruising the high seas. 🙂