Disclaimer: You are probably going to think I am crazy when I post this, but I am going to do it anyways.
So I fly a lot these days, mostly to go see Stephanie, and I pay a lot of attention to frequent flier miles as a result. They are very handy to either book some expensive ticket far in advance, or to book last minute travel, which I have done a few times. Also if you fly a certain amount every year, you get perks like getting to reserve good seats, sometimes getting first class upgrades, and extra miles every time you fly.
Since I am no longer playing poker, flying and dealing with FF miles has become one of my new addictions. I research fares a lot for places I like to go (Alabama, Indiana, Seattle, New York), and creative ways of getting there. See if I could take a direct flight, but a connecting flight costs the same, I might take the connection because I get free extra miles, which gets me closer to the number of miles I need to fly every year to keep my nice benefits, and allows me to get more free tickets.
Therefore, this weekend when I was going to Albany (ALB), I already decided to go through at least Detroit (DTW) as my parents were going through there, and the MSP-ALB direct flights were much more expensive. However I happened to know there are cheap fares through Chicago, so I booked MSP-ORD-DTW-ALB for Friday and ALB-DTW-ORD-MSP for Sunday. Crazy right?
Well here is where the fun comes in. I noticed Thursday night that my MSP-ORD flight was overbooked. Knowing this I asked the agent if they would need volunteers to give up their seat. Typically one can get a $100-300 voucher towards a future flight, plus being booked on a later flight for giving up your seat. However, being sneaky I negotiated to not only get a $200 voucher, but to put me on a direct MSP-DTW, that would get me to DTW earlier than I had originally been scheduled, so I would not even be delayed at my final destination. Score!
But what about those frequent flier miles you so preciously covet you may ask? Well since they rerouted me I only got credit for the 2 flights I took, instead of the 3 I had booked. However I called in, and they should be able to give me credit for my original routing, which means I get the more miles, spent less time on the plane, plus got $200. How about that?
On the way back today, it was the same thing, all flights out of ORD were overbooked pretty much since Sunday night is big for commuters. There was only one flight after mine, but I went ahead and asked about volunteering. The lady said I could get $200, but since the later flight was also overbooked they'd probably have to send me through DTW. This was ironic because I had just came from there, but for the $200, and the extra miles I would get for doing it, I was fine with it. After my original flight left though and the gate agent started to process my bump, she went ahead and booked me on the 8pm direct to MSP flight anyways.
Now having gained $400 in vouchers on a trip I paid $320 for, I was doing quite well. But of course since my new flight is still overbooked, I get another opportunity for a voucher. This time $300, but I would have to stay overnight. This isn't too big of a problem because they would cover the hotel, but my bag had already taken the previous flight to Minneapolis since they couldn't pull it off in time. Combining this with having to work in the morning, I figured it would probably not be a good idea to give up my seat.
Thus I flew on home, and here I am.
If I were cool I would put a poll up, but since I can't I'll just ask. Do you think I am extremely crazy, moderately crazy, or not crazy at all? Reply in a comment.