I wrote this post because this past week an incredible number of people have asked how this works.
Getting Plane Tickets for Free?!!!
Yep, that’s right plane tickets for free. Here is how. The US Mint runs a dollar coin circulation program. A single dollar bill will remain in circulation for months, while a dollar coin can remain in circulation for decades. You can order boxes in denominations of $250 with free shipping. How can the US Mint afford to ship these heavy coins for free?!! According to coinflation, Dollar coins have a metal melt value of 6.59 cents. And they “sell” them for $1! They are not losing money.
Below (in simplest form), are the steps to get free airline tickets:
- Click on this link and purchase the dollar coins:
- Once the coins are received, deposit them into your bank account
- Pay off the dollar coin purchase on your credit card with the coins you deposited
- Use your airline miles for free flights.
Before attempting any of this, you need to choose a credit card that offers airline rewards miles. I use the Chase Visa United Mileage Plus Credit Card. Two major factors are which credit card and which airline carrier. Why United? I am from Chicago. United Airlines is headquartered in Chicago and has it’s largest hub there. You can use miles to purchase flights on airlines in the Star Alliance network which includes US Airways and Continental. The hub for a particular airline is a large factor in deciding which airline to go with because this will in large part determine the availability of flights with your airline miles.
Research which airline best serves your city. A few are listed below.
United Airlines Hubs: (Star Alliance)
- Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington DC, Tokyo, & Denver
American Airlines Hubs: (OneWorld Alliance)
- Dallas/Fort Worth, New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago
Delta Airlines: (Sky Team Alliance)
- Atlanta, New York, Detroit, Amsterdam, Paris, Memphis, Tokyo, Salt Lake City, Minneapolis, Cincinnati
Each airline will have numerous credit card rewards programs. There are many websites dedicated specifically to the differences between each card. Pick an airline, and then research the card options.
For United I went with the Chase Visa United Mileage Plus Credit Card. Just for signing up for the card you will receive 30,000 miles once you spend $250 on the card. (One box of dollar coins!) 25,000 miles is equivalent to one free flight, so you will get a free airline ticket just for signing up for the card, and still have 5,000 miles leftover. Additionally you get 15,000 miles for each friend you refer (up to two). I have referred two of my friends already and received 30,000 more miles. This is worth another free flight! Note, I have already maxed out my referrals, but I know people who have the card and would love to get the referral miles. If you are interested in this card and willing to let them “refer” you, please contact me.
Now, on to the dollar coins
When you purchase $250 (or any quantity of coins) it will show a $4.95 shipping fee. This will disappear once you checkout. Once you receive the dollar coins, deposit them and pay off your credit card.
***Note: If you have a chase credit card, and have a chase bank account where you deposit your dollar coins, you will not get credit for the miles. I suggest opening up a “dump account” at another banking institution and use that to pay off your credit card. There has also been trouble reported with people who have bank accounts at US Bank with them not receiving airline mileage credit. Also, Bank of America has a policy where they do not count coins at bank branches anymore. They send out coins once a week to an offsite facility to be counted. This can be incredibly annoying for a few reasons. First, they make you unwrap each roll of dollar coins! If you do this in quantity this can take a while. Since they ship them out once a week, they can take a long time to actually clear and show up as a deposit in your account.
Once your miles show up, you can now start planning your vacation J Woo hoo! Free airline flights make a vacation that much sweeter!
Disclaimer: The coins are HEAVY. $2500 is 42 pounds. Assuming you referred two friends and got the 30,000 mile signup bonus, you’ll have 60,000 miles. To get 3 free flights you’ll need 15,000 more miles. This would weigh 252 pounds. If you don’t refer anyone, you’ll have 30,000 miles. Still good for a free flight with some change leftover. However, to get 3 free flights you’ll need 45,000 miles. $45,000 in dollar coins weighs 756 pounds. (This assumes zero expenditures on anything else).
You can still use your card for everyday purchases like food and gas. If you can pay your rent by credit card this is also an added plus. Is this worth it? That is up to you. There were times when it was so unbelievably annoying that I thought I’d vomit at the sight of another dollar coin! However, being able to fly to Vancouver, Los Angeles, Akron/Canton (small airport and expensive flight), and Austin for FREE has made it worthwhile.
My mileage history not including miles earned from card purchases:
Hope this answers all the questions regarding the process. If there’s anything else send me an email or ask in the comment section below. Enjoy the free flights!!!!