Reader success story: How this couple used journey rewards to cowl an epic $50,000 anniversary journey to Asia

Immediately I wish to share a narrative from TPG reader Katie O’Brien, who used factors and miles to ebook a splendid luxurious anniversary journey to Southeast Asia.

Katie posted her story within the TPG Lounge, and once we noticed she used factors and miles to ebook what would have been a $55,000-plus journey, we knew this could be an unforgettable reader success story. As Katie put it, “This was really the journey of a lifetime.”

Katie and her husband spent 5 years saving the factors and miles to make this dream journey to have a good time a decade of marriage a actuality. They deliberate their journey round award availability, circumnavigating the globe in luxurious over the course of 18 days.

Beginning the journey off proper


The couple began their journey with a Japan Airways first-class flight from New York’s John F. Kennedy Worldwide Airport (JFK) to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport (HND). Reserving this coveted award spot required 120,000 Asia Miles per individual, so Katie and her husband transferred Citi ThankYou factors to Asia Miles at a 1:1 ratio. However they nonetheless wanted to high off their Asia Miles stability.

In order that they enlisted the help of their Marriott Bonvoy factors and transferred them to Asia Miles. Whereas these transfers are at a much less spectacular 3:1 ratio, Marriott offers 5,000 bonus Asia Miles for each 60,000 factors transferred.

The end result? A $30,000-plus flight for 240,000 miles.


Associated: Spa at 35,000 ft: A evaluation of Japan Airways in top notch from New York to Tokyo

After spending three nights on the InterContinental Tokyo Bay, the O’Briens continued to Thailand. As with their JAL flight from New York, they transferred Citi ThankYou and Marriott Bonvoy factors to Asia Miles to fund a 61,000-mile-per-person journey from Haneda Airport to Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) in Japan Airways’ enterprise class.


This flight would have price north of $5,000 utilizing money.

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Associated: Getting a style of Japan in JAL enterprise class from Tokyo to Chicago

The enjoyable continues in Thailand and Singapore


After a fast in a single day in Bangkok, Katie and her husband took a home flight to Krabi Worldwide Airport (KBV) in southern Thailand. They spent 5 nights at Rayavadee Resort, which has 100 pavilion-style rooms tucked away in tropical foliage. By reserving the reservation with Citi ThankYou and being cardholders of the Citi Status® Card (not out there to new candidates), they leveraged their bank card’s fourth-night-free profit, saving $1,028.

The data for the Citi Status has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or offered by the cardboard issuer.

Following their 5 nights in Krabi, they flew to Chiang Mai Worldwide Airport (CNX), having fun with 4 nights on the 137 Pillars Home Chiang Mai. This Nineteenth-century teak mansion-style property boasts 30 suites, showcasing Thailand’s colonial affect. As with the Rayavadee, they used the fourth-night-free profit from the Citi Status card, saving $380.

Boarding a fast hop from Chiang Mai to Singapore Changi Airport (SIN), they spent their last two nights in Asia on the JW Marriott Lodge Singapore South Seaside. With a nightly fee of 48,000 Marriott Bonvoy factors, they spent two nights right here, with a 50,000-point certificates for one night time and a 35,000-point certificates (topped off with 13,000 factors) for the opposite night time. Their Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite standing granted them complimentary entry to the JW Marriott’s govt lounge, which serves breakfast and night hors d’oeuvres. Their keep would have price $913 booked with money.

Associated: My best-ever lodge expertise: A keep on the iconic Raffles Singapore

The grand finale


Whereas the O’Briens may have booked the ultra-long-haul 19-hour nonstop flight from Singapore to JFK, Singapore Airways would not have its Suites product on its Airbus A350s that function this route.

As a substitute, they opted for the Suites by touring on the Airbus A380 from Singapore to Frankfurt Airport (FRA) and from Frankfurt to JFK. The journey again price 474,000 KrisFlyer miles, which they transferred from Chase Final Rewards at a 1:1 ratio. Two money seats would have price a whopping $18,068.

Additionally they broke the 2 flights up with a 35,000-point Marriott certificates for an evening on the Frankfurt Airport Marriott Lodge — a modest redemption, as this room would have price $187 out of pocket.

Associated: Final information to Singapore KrisFlyer

Backside line

Katie and her husband’s tenth anniversary journey would have price over $55,000 if that they had paid money. As a substitute, they calculated they spent $1,811 (there are taxes and costs on award tickets) for airfare which might have been $54,171.

On the inns entrance, they saved $2,499 because of Marriott Bonvoy factors, free night time certificates and the Citi Status’s fourth-night-free perk. As Katie mentioned, “We obtained to see and do issues we by no means would have dreamed of had we not had the information to avoid wasting up the factors to make this occur.”

She and her husband spent years saving the miles to make this journey a actuality. Was it value it? Katie mentioned it was “an expertise we will definitely always remember!”

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