In February, two weeks after I travel hacked Las Vegas, I travel hacked New Orleans.
Despite my love for beignets, it had been more than 12 years since my last visit to the Big Easy. A return visit was long overdue.
But unlike my trip many years ago, on this visit, I travel hacked New Orleans for a total trip cost of $167.90.
Here’s how I hacked my trip to New Orleans and you can too!
How to Travel Hack New Orleans
This is part 1 of a multi-part series on travel hacking New Orleans.
I flew roundtrip from San Diego to New Orleans for a weekend getaway including an overnight layover in Dallas for $16.80.
Pro-tip: Without the stop in Dallas, the trip would have cost $11.20.
This was a short trip to attend a miles and points meetup.
Several airlines fly from San Diego to New Orleans so there are a lot of options. The least expensive ticket was $346.
Most airlines charge 25,000 miles roundtrip for a free flight. For that price, it makes sense to buy the ticket instead of using miles.
Unless you can find a better deal, as I did.
Because I was traveling solo I couldn’t use the Southwest Companion Pass.
I found an economy web special on American Airlines to New Orleans for 8,000 that included an overnight in Dallas. One less night in New Orleans but I would avoid a redeye flight.
For the return flight from New Orleans to San Diego I booked a standard award of 12,500 miles.
The cost for both flights was 20,000 miles plus $16.80.
On the way to New Orleans, card_name gave me free access to the San Diego Airspace Lounge and a $10 credit for food and drinks. You can also use card_name. Enrollment is required for select benefit. The card also got me into the Centurion Lounge at the Dallas Fort Worth Airport.
Flying home from New Orleans, my card_name got me into the Club MSY.
Pro-tip: You can get free access to airport lounges with your credit card.
To avoid a redeye flight to New Orleans, I stayed at two Hyatt hotels during this weekend’s getaway to New Orleans.
Hyatt Regency DFW International Airport
For my overnight in Dallas, I stayed at the Hyatt Regency DFW International Airport in a suite. I’ve stayed here many times before and they treat Globalists very well. Free night awards are 8,000 points per night. Sometimes you luck out and rooms are inexpensive so you have to decide when you should use points and when to pay cash for hotels. With taxes, I paid $151.10.
Pro-tip: This is a Category 4 hotel so you can use your free night certificate from the World of Hyatt card.
Hyatt Place New Orleans Convention Center
While in New Orleans, I stayed at the Hyatt Place New Orleans Convention Center. I used 12,000 Hyatt points. The Hyatt Centric and The Eliza Jane in the French Quarter are also 12,000 points per night. I had an early morning flight so would miss breakfast and the Hyatt Place was walking distance to the brewery. So I picked the Hyatt Place.
How to Earn the Miles and Points
The quickest way to earn miles and points to travel hack New Orleans is credit card bonuses.
Besides welcome offers, I use creative ways to earn unlimited miles and points. With those points, I’ve travel hacked Australia not once but twice for a two week Australia trip, a ten day trip to Europe, and the Maldives.
Sixteen airlines fly to New Orleans and several offer co-branded airline credit cards. For this trip, it was cheaper for me to use American Airlines miles.
With so many airlines and hotels, you can travel hack New Orleans. My trip to the Big Easy should have cost $746.10 but I only paid $167.90.
New Orleans is inexpensive unless you visit during Mardi Gras. So it’s easy to use miles and points when visiting the Big Easy. The quickest way to earn miles and points to get a free trip to New Orleans is through travel rewards credit cards. But do the math because it might make more sense to pay cash than to use miles and points.
I use miles and points for trips in the US when I can find a great deal like the web special award and reduced miles awards. That way I have more points to travel hack Australia, Europe, and the Maldives.
Stay tuned for the next part of this series: flights to New Orleans.
What are your tricks and how-tos to travel hack New Orleans?
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