Tips for Starting Out

I first dipped my feet in this hobby in February 2015, but it wasn’t until June that I realized the full potential of MSing, churning, reselling, portals, etc. Needless to say there are tons of different ways to get points/miles. Some people are able to get miles just from credit card bonuses and normal spending. Other people perform to buy items with the credit card and resell them on Amazon or eBay. There are many different paths to earning miles/points. What I have noticed during my short time in this hobby is that most people use a combination of manufactured spending, churning, and portals. The people who make it out the best are the ones that can adapt to the ever changing environment.

Here are some tips to people starting out:

  • Read. Research. Repeat. As soon as I started this hobby I started reading 8-10 blogs a day. Blogs much like this one post offers or deals that you might not have found on your own. They offer advice or new methods of manufactured spending. The key is to constantly be reading and researching. Reddit and Flyertalk are great for having discussions with other people in this hobby.
  • Have a Plan. The other thing about people in this hobby is that they are organized and have an attack plan before they even apply for the credit card with the $7,500 minimum spending bonus. You need to know what you’re going to do before you jump into the deep end.
  • Just Do It. You’re not going to know if it works till you try. First off do your research about the credit card or the manufactured spending technique, but in the end you have to go and try it out for yourself. There’s a term, YMMV, which means Your Miles May Vary and I think this encompasses a lot of what this hobby is about. One grocery store might not allow you to purchase money orders, but the one 5 miles away will let you. For instance, I lost probably about $5 are my first couple of resale items due to the fact that I didn’t account for shipping to Amazon’s warehouse. However, I wouldn’t have known that you pay for inbound shipping unless I actually went through with a FBA sale.

I am the type of person that likes to have everything figured out before I hit the apply or purchase button. Unfortunately, you’re not going to find the magical answer to every question you have when it comes to this hobby. Hopefully through taking the time to research and have a plan of attack you can mitigate certain risks.