I just returned from a pretty awesome weekend attending the Chicago Seminars with 500+ other frequent flyer and points and miles junkies, and it was an incredible experience just as I had expected it to be! This was my second year attending the seminars (last year’s event planted the seed of inspiration for the blog), and it was a perfect way to put names and faces to blog names and twitter handles.
If you missed out this year, don’t worry – it’s an annual event that’ll be returning in October 2013. If you can’t wait that long, consider attending Frequent Traveler University at LAX in just a few weeks for another similar fun-filled weekend November 30-December 2. I’ll be there, and I’m super excited to see everyone again!
Here were some highlights of the Chicago Seminars in chronological order:
- Meeting MileCollector and his new points-addicted friend Edvard on our 6 am flight to ORD and then exploring downtown Chicago with them before the event started. Reader and fellow points-ethusiast, Bobby, met us for a yummy deep-dish pizza lunch.
- Rooming with New Girl in the Air to save on costs, and convincing the hotel to let us break up the stay into two separate nights so that we can both get the points/stay credit.
- Participating in a variety of nearby mattress runs at the Sheraton Suites Elk Grove and the Radisson O’Hare in order to get free night certificates.
- Having lunch at Lou Malnati’s with Very Good Points and the Frugal Travel Lawyer using $30 worth of free gift cards from a previous AmEx sync promotion a few months ago.
- Mingling with Captain Denny, Will Run for Miles, Mile Value, The Frequent Miler, and Frequent Flyer University at the hotel bar and enjoying penny beers for checking in with FourSquare.
- Having all of the other bloggers gasp at me when I admitted that I did not have an Ink Bold or Ink Plus card yet. The host hotel was conveniently nested next to an Office Depot…
- Heading on over to an evening cocktail reception and enjoying two free drink tickets courtesy of The Points Guy.
- Seeing many retweets of my tweet the next morning that read: “Retweet if you’re slightly hungover this morning #chicagoseminars”
- Hoping to win a prize in the world’s fastest raffle drawing ever (of course, I did not win). I believe over 50 raffle prizes were given away in a record-time of 15 minutes.
- Participating in the Blogger Q+A Panel, moderated by Frugal Travel Guy, that also included Mommy Points, Mr. Pickles, Brian Cohen of The Gate, Delta Points, Will Run for Miles, The Rapid Travel Chai, Frugal Travel Lawyer, Hack My Trip, Very Good Points, Million Mile Secrets, and Jeff the Wanderer.
- Having that very said session evacuated when tornado sirens went off and we all had to find “shelter”.
- Enjoying just a 5 minute trip to the Admirals Club with Southern Travel Girl and The Deal Mommy since we all were lucky enough to clear earlier standby flights home!