Reader Success Story to Iceland


Our latest Reader’s Success Story comes from Corey. Her family used points and miles to go to Iceland, a destination that we know some of our readers are interested in! Here is her story:

We have been collecting points since 2020 and have about 15 cards. We primarily used Chase Ultimate Rewards for this trip. Any travel that wasn’t with points, we paid with our Chase Sapphire Preferred Card or our American Express Platinum Card for the insurance benefits and to earn more points.

We flew Alaska Airlines from Pasco, Texas to Seattle (3 of us) and Portland to Seattle(2 of us) to position to fly Icelandair from Seattle to Keflavík. The total for the positioning flights was 34,300 Citibank ThankYou points (for 5 one-way tickets).  I paid for return flights from SEA with the $200 Amex Platinum incidental airline credit (by paying for them separately, they qualified) and leftover Alaska credits. The Icelandair flights were paid with 285,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards and $33 in taxes and fees.

Man and woman standing in front of snow


We purchased Amazon gift cards for buying things we needed for our trip and an Airbnb card for our Airbnb stay. We purchased these at grocery stores with credit cards that offered 5x points for groceries.

I got global Entry for everyone using our American Platinum credits for the adults, free authorized user Gold cards for the teens, and paid out-of-pocket for my son. Our car rental and one activity were also paid with points.

We were able to visit the American Express Centurion Lounge in Seattle because each cardholder gets in free and can bring two guests. We had a total of five people on this trip including my husband and me and three kids (ages 15, 13, and 11).

I entered the world of travel hacking during the pandemic as something to do while we weren’t able to travel. My husband was very suspicious at first but was fully on board after I earned a bonus or two without spending extra money. I read every article on It gave me the confidence that travel hacking would be both beneficial and doable for our family.



Our future plans for travel hacking are to keep amassing points! We do it the opposite way from many who have a goal and plan their points around their goal. We can’t plan much in advance so I focus on earning the points and, when we have an opportunity, we go for it! The top contenders for the next trip are Cost Rica, the Southern part of Spain, Japan, and Ecuador!

Bottom Line

Great job, Corey! Thanks for sharing your reader success story to Iceland with us! We are so happy that we were able to have a small part in teaching you about this amazing hobby!

Northern lights above snow

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want to know the most popular card for beginner travel hackers? 

click here

Affiliate Disclosure: Travel Hacking Mom uses affiliate links. We may receive compensation if you use our links when applying for a credit card at no extra cost to you. This compensation does not impact how or where products appear on this site. Travel Hacking Mom has not reviewed all available credit card offers on this site. Thank you so much if you use our links!

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this site is not provided by credit card issuer. All opinions, reviews, and recommendations are expressed by the author, not the credit card issuer.