Like regular readers would know, last year, I met a girl, fell in love, and asked her the question. She said yes!
It is about time to introduce all of you to Shipra. Shipra, has lived, worked and travelled across 4 continents. While she travels on work, she also makes a great co-traveller for me as we go around conquering cities small and big every now and then. Shipra will try and be a regular around here, and these are her perspectives that she will bring to you. I’ll turn the mike to her to make her introductions, while I go back to sipping my Diet Coke at the InterContinental Asiana Saigon’s 20th floor lounge. Of course, if I got a dime for every time I tried to coax her into starting her posts here, I’d be a millionaire by now.
I started my career with one of the largest airlines in the world. During my five year stint with them, I had multiple opportunities to fly on work and on vacation. Work travel always entitled me to the business class cabins and when travelling personally, staff benefits made business class travel cheaper than the cost an economy commercial ticket. Thus, there was never a need to look out for airline sales or put my head together to learn about how to earn and burn airline miles.
I was exposed to the subject to airline miles last year. Ajay, my then boyfriend, now fiancee, of course jars my ears non-stop about how we need some more miles and points for the kitty all the time. So, to start with, I’ll share my stories of how my perspective on travel has changed in the last 1 year.
Ajay says, If the local grocer below your house has a card machine, pay him every rupee by card. I grew up in an Indian business household, where we believe that “cash is king”. Carrying a credit card was always a hassle for me when I could always pay in cash for everything upfront.
My perspective began to change when Ajay, constantly started talking about earning air miles for every paisa spent. I learnt that some cards allow you to earn 4 miles for a 100 rupee spend and some up to 6 miles. He convinced me to apply for the American Express Jet Airways Platinum Credit Card that allows me to accumulate 8 JP miles for every 150 INR I spend on this card, apart from a bonus of 15,000 JP miles to get started. This got me thinking, I can earn 8 air miles for every 150 INR spent. This meant that for every INR 1.5 lakh that I spend, I will gain 8000 air miles. Simple calculation, a one-way air mile redemption ticket from Mumbai to my hometown near Lucknow is about 8500 air miles and with my spending pattern I can easily earn myself a free one way air ticket every 3-4 months. That’s about INR 7,000 saved or shall we say another INR 7,000 earned
Have I mastered this yet? NO! I am still learning to self discipline myself to stop doling out notes wherever I can and the result is that last week I used my AMEX card to recharge my Starbucks account with INR 200 denomination.