Makapu'u Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
December 31, 2013
For those who inquired about our wedding plans, travel, photos, etc, please check out the links below. We have included all the resources for the vendors & locations we chose to use for our big day - all of which were absolute perfection.
If you are also interested in our tips for free and discounted travel, scroll down past the links for more details!
|Craig & K.J. Purcell-Beard|
More about our Wedding:
Suggestions for free/discounted travel:
Use credit card reward miles programs and sign up well in advance (1-2 years). By doing this, and taking advantage of the full rewards and referrals, 5 of our guests did this with the Southwest Airline reward card. Between all of us who did this, we saved a total of approximately $4500.00 in airfare across the board.
Here's how: Sign up for one of the credit cards, then spend the minimum limit within the time specified. We recommend starting with Southwest, then Hawaiian, then Marriott. Current offers vary, but google them & find the best. Always fully investigate any offer. Sometimes different banks offer higher point programs. There are blogs and sites out there that help you understand more about "Travel hacking." It's perfectly legal and these companies WANT you to take advantage of these programs. (I am not affiliated with any of the companies - haha).
Put every dime you possibly can on these cards and pay them off immediately. Use it as your bank... only spend what you would normally & go home and transfer the money from your bank account immediately. Do not carry balances. Most cards require a $1000 - $3000 spent within the first 1-3 months. If we are honest, it's sometimes easy to do if we are diligent & use it for all household expenses AND PAY IT OFF IN REAL TIME. Once you receive the reward for a card, then sign up for the next one & repeat. Each card is about a 2-3 month process. However, by doing this with current offers available on these credit cards (as of Jan 2015) you may earn enough points for at least a round trip domestic flight on Southwest Airlines, approximately a round trip fare (generally off-season) on Hawaiian Air, and at least 1-3 nights at Marriott depending on peak/offpeak or room category. If you refer others to do the same with these programs, sometimes you receive a bonus referral reward as well *cardholder guidelines apply*. Also, spouses can sign up in each persons name (instead of joint) and EACH will receive the reward - thus doubling your benefits.
- Travel for work? Sign up for rewards programs with each travel provider and use the same hotel/airline/etc every time (as much as possible). Accrue those points!
- There are often multiple offers online - look for the best one. Do your research.
- If you don't have a good credit score, start there! Most people can turn their credit score around in a year or less, so a three year plan is not out of the picture.
- Check on each card's partnership programs. Sometimes by using the Southwest card at our local restaurants we go to anyway, we get double or triple points. Always use Marriott cards to pay for Marriott services. I've gotten triple points.
- Plan WAY ahead and be very diligent and you could just find yourself in Hawaii for no more than the cost of entertainment and food! It's real. We did it. Oh, by the way... we have points left and are planning another trip that is already mostly paid for. AND I'm still using one of the cards every day and accruing points. Hawaii or bust!
- Southwest Airlines (Rapid Rewards Credit Card) (earn points by signing up for the card & accrue points well in advance.)
- Hawaiian Airlines- Hawaiian Airlines (earn points by signing up for the card & accrue points well in advance.)
- Marriott Rewards Credit Card (earn points by signing up for the card & accrue points well in advance.)
- American Airlines (AAdvantage).