FUN: Remembering when I was a “Miles Chaser”

https://bitcoinmagazine.com/culture/bitcoin-songsheet-airline-miles?utm_source=Bitcoin+Magazine&utm_campaign=4e1027bcbe-&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f7d45fbb67-4e1027bcbe-357073741&mc_cid=4e1027bcbe&mc_eid=386b7b0895

Bitcoin Songsheet: Airline Miles Are The Original Altcoins
Airline miles are the original altcoin, allowing zombie companies to issue
value for nothing while encouraging people to be “Miles Chasers.”
Jimmy Song
Apr 11, 2022

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Confessions of a Miles Chaser

I used to be one of those Miles Chasers. I’d spend an hour looking for a way to earn miles so I could get the equivalent of $8 in miles. Somehow, it never registered that I was giving myself a job at $8/hr. The sadder thing is that the work didn’t really benefit anybody or build anything. It was as productive as doomscrolling through Facebook. Unfortunately, Miles Chasing is a hard habit to break because of the scarcity mentality that’s so common to fiat money: You can take the miles from my cold, dead hands.

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I was once a “miles chaser”, but I never bought into the credit card offers and other ”extra miles” gimmicks.

I had a job at AT&T where I was doing database trying for a new footprint side roll out.  I had to visit an absurd number of cities in — as I remember it — in 8 week window.  The United plan had some number of miles and “segments” for a few week in Hawaii including free round trip first class tickets for two people.  Getting miles was the “easy part”; segment were much harder. Reading the “rules”, a non-stop counted as one segment, but stops along the route counted as segments. Since I was allowed to chose my flights, I took the roll out schedule and figured out how to do the training and collect the required number of segments. Laugh!  (Just tell me the rules and I’ll figure it out.)  So I was doing two cities a week Monday / Tuesday in City #1 and then Thursday / Friday in City #2.  So Sunday night I went Trenton to Pittsbugh to O’Hare then proceeding to City #1. On Wednesday I’d fly from City #1 to City #2; non-stop unless I needed more segments. And finally on Friday night, inbound to home from City #2 to O’Hare, Pittsburgh, and Trenton. Laugh!  No problem. Then Frau Reinke and I went to Hawaii via LA and San Fran with side trips to Las Vegas and Reno. 

Made it all worthwhile. Got a great appraisal for doing the training with a raise, bonus, and promotion. No much of a life for those 8 weeks but everything in life was a trade off.  I even got kudos for “saving travel money” since the price of direct flights at the time was about triple my connectors. 

It was a great “life hack” and I learned to always study the rules.

Laugh!

I never used or collected “miles” after that. 

Laugh!

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GOVEROTRAGEOUS: Airlines are “zombie companies” due to Gooferment bailouts

https://bitcoinmagazine.com/culture/bitcoin-songsheet-airline-miles?utm_source=Bitcoin+Magazine&utm_campaign=4e1027bcbe-&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f7d45fbb67-4e1027bcbe-357073741&mc_cid=4e1027bcbe&mc_eid=386b7b0895

Bitcoin Songsheet: Airline Miles Are The Original Altcoins

  • Airline miles are the original altcoin, allowing zombie companies to issue value for nothing while encouraging people to be “Miles Chasers.”

Jimmy Song
Apr 11, 2022

*** begin quote ***

Because governments view airlines as a display of national prestige, there’s a tendency to bail them out of their troubles. The three major U.S. airlines (Delta, American and United) have gone through at least one bankruptcy in the last 20 years. The bankruptcy proceedings usually result in a merger or some new company that’s injected with government funds. Even airlines that might go bankrupt are bailed out by the government such as during the travel shutdowns of the pandemic. The result is that airlines are now zombie companies that repeatedly get revived through government intervention.

Zombie companies typically don’t do that well in the marketplace. It’s no coincidence that air travel times are slower now than in the ‘70s. Planes might be more fuel efficient, but they’re not really faster or more convenient. The way these zombies have survived, besides government intervention, is through the financialization of their miles programs.

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One really has to see the link between bailouts and inefficient zombie companies.

Real competition between financially healthy airlines would make air travel faster, more convenient, as well as “cheaper”.

The DHS / TSA “airport security” is “security theater” at best and further allows zombie airlines to shift costs to the public at large.

Argh!

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