✈️ Wait... awards charts can get... better?

✈️ Wait... awards charts can get... better?

Estimated read time: 3 minutes and 30 seconds

🤓 Trivia Tuesday: In which South Asian country can you find a sacred fig tree that was planted from a cutting taken from the Indian tree that granted Siddhartha Gautama enlightenment to become Buddha? Phew... I'm winded just reading that.

Howdy. Welcome back to Daily Drop, the fairy godmother of newsletters. We’re here to make all your travel hacking wishes come true.

Today, we’ve got a number of wishes to grant, so let’s jump in:

  • ✈️ Qatar Airways LOWERS award pricing on partner airlines

  • 🏨 Radisson Hotels 5,000 points per stay

  • 🤓 Travel Trivia Tuesday

✈️ Qatar Airways LOWERS award pricing on partner airlines

Gather round, kids. I’m going to tell you a tale about the olden days of travel hacking.

Back in the good ol’ days, airlines and hotels used to price awards based on what they called “award charts.”

They were beautiful. Stunning, really.

Basically, if you were flying a certain route or staying in a specific hotel, the points price was fixed based on these charts.

However, it wasn’t long before an evil warlord took over. This warlord is called dynamic pricing, and it’s ruled the travel hacking world since.

If you look hard enough, you can see some elderly charts that still exist.

One of these charts belongs to Qatar Airways and dictates the pricing of awards for partner airlines.

And guess what?

It just got better… Like… a lot better. Like so good it makes me dance like this:

And by that I mean, it makes me wish I could dance like this… Also, does anyone else get hella nostalgic watching the Carlton dance, or is it just me?

Anyway, here’s the deal:

Qatar recently published a new, updated award chart that applies to airlines like American, Japan Airlines, and Cathay Pacific when booked with Qatar Avios.

This new award pricing also happens to be a lot cheaper than it used to be. In some cases, awards are 55% lower than the previous chart…

Here’s a quick look at the chart:

So let’s look at a quick example of how you can apply this to your own travels.

Let’s say you live in Los Angeles and want to fly to Tokyo. Japan Airlines is a partner of Qatar, so you can use your Qatar points to book a flight nonstop from LAX to NRT.

Since the distance between the two cities is 5,451 miles, the flight should cost you 25,750 Avios in economy based on the new chart above.

Sure enough, if we run a search on Qatar…


25,000 points to fly across the Pacific is actually a great deal if you ask me.

Sure, there are other comparable programs that can get you there at similar prices, but this just gives you yet another great option when booking your trip.

Qatar Avios are SUPER easy to earn, given that you can freely convert them to/from British Airways and Iberia Avios.

That means that since every major bank program allows you to transfer your points to British Airways, they essentially also allow you to transfer to Qatar.

This is a BIG win for the travel hacking world, so we should all be celebrating. Party’s at my place. 7:00 p.m. Sharp. Don’t be late. 😉

🏨 Radisson Hotels 5,000 points per stay

Radisson is the honeydew melon of hotel programs. Yeah, it’s fine. I guess. And if it’s there, I guess I’ll try it. But I just don’t care. Nobody does.

Their program and portfolio of hotels are just… meh.

But at the end of the day, I’m willing to sell my soul to the highest bidder. Even if that bidder is Radisson Hotels. Which at the moment, it may be…

Right now, you can earn 5,000 bonus points per stay at Radisson Americas hotels with very little fine print.

Here’s the deal:

  • Earn 5,000 bonus Radisson points for every stay completed before July 16th

  • Earn a maximum of 100,000 points during the promotion period

  • You must first register for the offer

  • Only valid at Radisson hotels in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean

To be clear, a “stay” can technically be just one night, which is a GREAT return to get on your hotel spending.

As I said, Radisson isn’t a great program. But many of you probably have summer travel plans both at home in the U.S. for the 4th of July or abroad like me.

Radisson has plenty of budget-friendly hotels, which might allow you to earn a lot of outsize value on a single-night stay.

For example, I have an overnight layover in Sao Paolo, Brazil, in early July and need to book a hotel. This Radisson property costs less than $70 per night and would earn me 5,000 extra points toward another quick layover stay in the future, which I think is a great deal.

So here’s the bottom line:

If you have any travels coming up in the Americas over the next few weeks, register for this offer and consider booking a nice, cheap stay and raking in some big points.

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🤓 Travel Trivia Tuesday

Correct answer: Sri Lanka 

The tree’s full name is Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi, and it is believed to be the oldest living human-planted tree in the world! 😳 

This tree has been nurtured and cared for over the course of 2,300 years, symbolizing a direct connection to Buddha.

The original Bodhi tree was located in Bodh Gaya, India, and is believed to be the tree under which Siddhartha Gautama attained enlightenment.

As a lover of Buddhism, meditation, and South Asian culture, this one piques my interest quite a bit—and adds another item to the neverending bucket list of travel destinations.

The Yoda of all plants, this tree is. 🧘🏼‍♂️

That’s all for today, folks. I don’t know about you, but I love learning these random trivia facts about the globe. It always makes me realize how many unique corners and cultures of the world I have yet to explore.

If so, where?

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Love you and see you tomorrow,

Mike Dodge
Head Writer, Daily Drop

29.9753° N, 31.1376° E

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