Two Tricks When United.com Isn’t Working

United.com is convenient to use, but doesn't work very well.

I ran a simple search the other day, and got a different problem with a different solution for the outbound and the return.
The Plan
I was just running a search from Chicago to Sydney roundtrip.

Book Tickets from Fake Location to Save Money

A friend passed along an article from Time.com that advocates doing something I've done a few times, but not described:

You can often get a cheaper price on a cash ticket if you book the ticket in foreign currency through airline's website designed for use by people in another country.

Power Point Slides from Chicago Seminars about Trick Awards

I gave a well-received presentation on Trick Awards at the Chicago Seminars in October.

The presentation dealt with free one ways, negative price one ways, open jaws, stopovers, avoiding fuel surcharges, and award chart SUPER sweet spots.

Enjoy!

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Two Tricks I Used on My Last Award Booking

As you read this, I'm 35,000 feet up on my way to Medellin, Colombia.

I was in Tucson over the weekend for a tennis tournament, and I didn't have any exit flight booked. I really wanted to return to Colombia because I had enjoyed Bogota so much and heard even better things about Medellin, but award space didn't appear to be available for a Monday departure from Tucson to Medellin.

I used two tricks and a little bit of creativity to come up with a Saver award, save myself $75 in fees, and give myself a chance to hang

Get Virgin Australia Status and Miles by Flying Delta Award Ticket?

I met the author of Don't Call the Airline (great blog name, right?), a Canadian frequent flyer miles blog, at the Chicago Seminars.

He came up to me and told me about how he had earned 20,000+ Virgin Australia Velocity miles and status by flying a Delta AWARD ticket.

What did DCTA do to "earn" the miles?
Is the process repeatable?

Trick
After booking his roundtrip in Virgin Australia Business Class with Delta miles, DCTA added his Virgin Australia Velocity number to the award ticket.

Virgin Australia mistakenly credited him for a full Business Class paid ticket, some 22

Reminder: You Can Still Book United Awards at Pre-Devaluation Prices

You can still pay United's award prices from January 2014 and before for premium cabin awards.

The catch is that you need to be changing an existing award that you booked February 2, 2014 or earlier.

My Second Best Travel Tip (Don’t Get Lost Abroad)

I actually haven't ranked my travel tips, but I love this one because it's super simple and saves me from getting lost all around the world.

But it's not my #1 travel tip, which would probably be "use miles" or "travel more" or "travel solo" or something like that.

It may not even be my #2 travel tip because you can save a lot of money with these two:

How I Pay Zero ATM Fees Worldwide
How to Get Free Texts and Cell Phone Data (Almost) Worldwide

Anyway, here's how I avoid getting lost worldwide when I don't have cell

I Changed a United Award to Lufthansa First Last Week at the Old Price

The 50k mile bonus offer is back on the Lufthansa card mentioned in this post until 6/30/14.

United Ends Free Holds Online, But You Can Still Use This Trick

Update 3/6/14: This post is outdated. See Master Thread: Holds on United Awards

In What You Need to Know about United Award Holds, I ran through the two ways to hold a United award online:

Any award that contains a partner segment can be held for free if your account does not have sufficient miles to ticket the award immediately.

Holiday Travel Tips from MileValue Featured on Forbes

The card offer in this post has expired so its links have been removed. Click here for the top current credit card sign up bonuses.

I was featured in a recent Forbes article called "20 Holiday Travel Secrets from Industry Insiders" about tips for cheaper and more comfortable holiday travel.