A month ago hotel program Club Carlson offered 1000 free points for filling out a form with your email address, account number and twitter handle and following Club Carlson on twitter.
I admit I had forgotten about the points until this morning when I updated all of my points balances (as I do first thing each morning via AwardWallet).
I saw that 1000 points posted, logged into my account to see what it was.
And I immediately remembered!
It struck me though that I had never added this 1000 points to my spreadsheet of outstanding points due to me.
There was a time that I added every 100 point item. Next to each I noted when the points were promised to post. And I followed up on each and every one that did not post by the expected date.
I always followed up by email where I could, so that I would get a written record of whatever commitment was made. Usually it told me to wait more, and I could then follow up in response to that written commitment when the points still didn’t post (as was usually the case). Responding to a written promise of points by a certain date almost always yielded the points.
Ten years ago I never let a point fail to make my list, and I never failed to follow up. And I’ve contemplated a bit this morning why that’s changed a bit.
For one thing, points are so much easier to earn than they used to be. When a credit card signup bonus was 15,000 points at the most, 1000 points seemed like a relatively bigger deal. When roundtrip business class awards to Australia were 90,000 points, 1000 points seemed like a bigger deal.
And I suppose I’m not as big a cheerleader for Club Carlson as some (the Club Carlson Visa’s second night free on award stays is amazing, but you have to make two-night stays at Club Carlson properties to really take advantage of it).
Finally, points just post much more reliably than they used to. I don’t have to follow up on as many transactions as I used to. So the expected upside to tracking small items is smaller than it used to be.
With some of the big mileage scores, I’ve been wondering if I’ve gotten too lazy in my points collecting? Or if improving technology and tracking has just made this all so much easier than it used to be.
Do you track every mile due to you? Do you find the miles you are owed posting properly the vast majority of the time, or do you have to follow up? Have your habits here changed at all in the past few years?
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