Our latest reader success story comes from Jessica as she shares her trip to Ireland. Ireland has long been on my “to-do” list. Here is her reader success story to Ireland!
Early last year, we learned that our nephew’s high school band had been invited to play in the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Dublin for 2023. My husband’s sister and her husband were going and planning on spending $3,000+ to do the tour booked through the school.
Ireland has always been my husband’s dream trip, so I thought, “no time like the present to try out my travel hacking skills!” As a bonus, I could help my in-laws save money by teaching them how to hack their travel also (and our trip was way better than the shadow tour).
I wanted to make sure we were on the same flight as our nephew, so we booked the flights as soon as the calendar opened up in April 2022. Needless to say, this trip had been a long time coming!
Fortunately, I got started on this hobby when a lot of the banks were offering increased bonuses. My husband and I had each gotten the Chase Sapphire Preferred when it offered the 100,000 points bonus and the Citi Premier when it offered 80,000 points. I had also opened the Capital One Venture X when it offered 100,000 points and the $200 AirBnb credit.
We referred my brother-in-law to the Chase Sapphire Preferred and instructed him to sign up for Citi (no referral bonus with them) so that they would have the type and amount of points needed for the bookings. I then came up with an itinerary and walked them through booking their flights and nights at Hyatt.
We flew round-trip from Orlando to Dublin on Aer Lingus for 65,000 points and $548.34, transferring points from Citi to British Airways and then to Avios.
Our Hyatt stays were booked using points transferred from Chase Sapphire Preferred. We booked these separately from our in-laws. We stayed two nights at Hyatt Centric The Liberties in Dublin for 24,000 points and two nights at Glenlo Abbey Hotel and Estate in Galway for 50,000 points (by far the nicest place we have ever stayed, and my in-laws were in awe of it!)
Thanks to my Capital One Venture X card, I was able to book one night in a two-bedroom AirBnb in Dingle for the four of us using the $200 AirBnb credit. Then, using the Capital One Venture X $300 travel credit, I was able to book two rooms for one night at Hotel Kilkenny for all of us as well.
In return for us covering two of their nights of lodging, our in-laws covered the cost of the rental car. We were able to spend a week driving to and staying in four different cities in Ireland for less than $600! And checking a destination off our bucket lists!
Travel Hacking Mom was one of the first accounts I followed on Instagram when I heard about travel hacking in 2021. We had never even stayed in a Hyatt or flown Southwest before learning all the tips and tricks from them. Now we have a Companion Pass and are close to Explorist status!
Thanks for your reader success story to Ireland, Jessica. I can’t wait to check Ireland off my bucket list, as well!
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