We’re getting close to the end of the year, and it’s time to plan travel for next year. Aside from visiting as many new countries as possible, I do have some new goals this year: Re-qualify for AAdvantage status. Due to the upcoming devaluation, I’d obviously prefer to stick with Alaska Airlines, but unfortunately, OneWorld benefits will be more useful to me in my future plans. So, AAdvantage it is!

I have always wanted to visit New Orleans. I’ll be stacking a bunch of deals to make this trip affordable, while hitting a bunch of travel goals. Alaska Airlines is now offering quite a deal ($118 one-way on select days), combined with the SPG Amex Keyless promotion, and some leftover Citi ThankYou points, and I’m looking at an affordable trip to a city I’ve always wanted to visit and a fairly decent haul of miles and points.

And of course, I’m looking forward to some amazing Jazz, and Creole cuisine.

Costs & Miles & Points Breakdown


Airfare: 27 USD (used 8850 Citi TY points for AA flight SEA-DFW-MSY, got a 75 USD discount code + 10 USD Alaska Air Wallet funds to discount 118 USD MSY-SEA flight on Alaska Air)

Hotel: 102 USD (SPG – I have other options to waive this, but the 2500 bonus meant I decided to pay for this out-of-pocket)

Total: 129 USD

Miles & Points

AAdvantage Miles: 4720 RDM (crediting my Alaska flight to AAdvantage, and 25% AAdvantage Gold bonus) / 2096 EQM – I’m not too worried about re-qualifying through EQM, but just really needed the 4-segment minimum

SPG points: 2676 Starwood points (I also needed to make my 1 eligible stay, so I can earn SPG points for using Uber this year)

Using The Points Guy’s valuations, I actually come up on top a bit:

Total earned: 146 USD (4720 AA x 0.017 + 2676 SPG x 0.025)