✈️ When dynamic pricing is actually good

✈️ When dynamic pricing is actually good

Estimated read time: 3 minutes and 45 seconds

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Good morning and welcome back to Daily Drop, the hottest newsletter on the market. It's like Ryan Gosling... if Ryan Gosling was an email and didn't actually look like Ryan Gosling.

But I’m Candian, so that counts for something, right…?

Here’s what today’s edition will be aboot:

  • ✈️ Capital One Travel Sale (starts tomorrow)

  • 🏃‍♂️ Mike on the Move: The positive side of dynamic pricing

  • 😆 Meme

✈️ Capital One Travel Sale (starts tomorrow)

Starting tomorrow, our friends at Capital One have a special surprise for people who hold their credit cards.

I don’t have ALL of the details, but the details I do have should get you pretty excited… 😉

Here’s the dealio:

  • If you hold this card or this card from Capital One, you can save up to $200 on flights and hotels

  • The sale starts tomorrow, October 10th

  • Valid for 40 cities around the world

You can check out this page for a few extra details, but you’ll have to log into Capital One Travel tomorrow to see the full details.

They have teased a handful of cities that this sale will apply to, including Tokyo, Paris, Miami, Aspen, Nashville, and more.

Howdy, Nashville

Given the crazy high earning rates for booking travel through Capital One Travel, this is an excellent deal.

For example, this card will earn you some pretty serious rewards on travel purchases:

If you can also rake in a hefty $200 discount, that can be an amazing way to both save money and get a great return on your spending.

So if you have one of the aforementioned cards, definitely look into the sale when it launches tomorrow so you can explore the available deals and hop on them!

🏃‍♂️ Mike on the Move: The positive side of dynamic pricing

Holy cow… I’m back in Toronto after a long, 49-day trip. And although I had plans to head off to Europe, those plans have since disintegrated.

But that’s okay because I’ve got some solid hacks to share with you from the final leg of this crazy journey home.

Here’s what my entire trip ended up looking like:

Over the last month, I’ve shared some great hacks for traveling around Africa using miles and points.

But I have one grand finale hack to share with you.

This hack got me 32 hours in business class over five flights through six countries and a free hotel for just 85,000 points.

Are you interested…?

Basically, here’s the deal…

Some points programs like Aeroplan have award charts for partner airlines but dynamic pricing for the primary airline of the program (Air Canada in this case).

This means that when you fly partner airlines, you can predict exactly what the points price will be based on the distance you’re flying.

When you fly on Air Canada, however, the points price is tied to the cash price.

But what happens when you book an itinerary with both partner airlines AND Air Canada flights…?

Well, sometimes it works in your favor. 😏

For example, if you wanted to book a flight from Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe to Toronto, the most common route on Aeroplan is this:

Basically, you have to fly from Zimbabwe to Botswana to Ethiopia to Togo to New York to Toronto.

Yeah, there aren’t a ton of routes available in Africa that are bookable with points…

Flying on partner airlines, this route spans 11,017 miles and should cost 110,000 points to fly in business class, based on the award chart:

However, that very last flight (which only accounts for 2.3% of the flying time) is on Air Canada, so dynamic pricing kicks in.

Instead of 110,000 points, this entire flight costs only 80,000 points… again, this is for BUSINESS CLASS.

As you can see, economy class also costs 18,000 MORE points than business class.

As I said, dynamic pricing can be very unpredictable, sometimes in VERY good ways…

Since Aeroplan lets you add stopovers for only 5,000 points, I stayed in Botswana for a couple of days and booked this exact ticket, in business class, for just 85,000 Aeroplan points.

I can’t explain how much more comfortable it was to spend 30+ hours in a lie-flat bed vs. in economy…

Plus, you may remember a hack I told you about a few weeks ago to get a free hotel when you have a long layover in Ethiopia. Since this itinerary involved a 12-hour overnight stay in Addis, that hack applied here, and I got a nice long sleep in a cozy room before the second half of my journey home.

Overall, this set of flights and the hotel would’ve cost a combined $8,430.

Obviously, most people would never pay that. Because it’s insane.

But business class tickets aren’t cheap, especially not over five different flights spanning dozens of hours.

Ethiopian Airlines is one of my favorite in the world, and flying in their luxurious business-class cabin is no joke, especially when we’re talking about dozens of hours in the air.

Still, this means that I got a value of around ten cents per point on this itinerary and got to spend extra time in a new country (Botswana) because of the stopover.

So, when you have longer itineraries like this, look for tickets where you can get dynamic pricing to kick in a little bit.

Sometimes, it will make the ticket way more expensive. Other times, however, it could save you tens of thousands of points and give you an incredible and comfortable journey home.

And if you aren’t aware, you can transfer points to Aeroplan from pretty much every major U.S. bank, so it’s incredibly easy to come across their points.

If you hate Aeroplan, this principle applies to any other program that uses both dynamic and fixed-chart pricing… which is most of them.

😆 Meme

Please don’t check bags, people.

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…or you can just buy these prizes from our website if you want to keep us all to yourself. 😉

Phew, that was a doozy, eh?

I know some of this travel hacking business can be tedious, but it really does pay off when you find yourself in a lie-flat bed for 30 hours for minimal points…

What’s the best points deal you’ve ever booked? I’d love to hear about it, so tell me by replying to this email or reaching out on social media.

Have a lovely day, folks.

Mike Dodge
Head Writer, Daily Drop

52°22'35.4"N 52°15'17.4"W

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