Wow, time really flies when you have a kid. RB40 Jr. is almost 3 years old now and he is growing so much every day. Long time readers will remember when he was just a 6 lb 4 oz ass kicking machine. Now he is running around and getting into all kinds of trouble. He is getting more independent and it’s easier now to take care of him.
At this age, a couple of months make a huge difference. In September, we tried a preschool and it didn’t work out. He cried nonstop and the small school couldn’t handle it. He just wasn’t ready for preschool back then. Two months later we tried a bigger preschool and it is working out much better. He cried a bit the first week, but he is doing quite well now. His new teacher also seems to be more in tune with his needs, so that’s really great. Sometime it just takes the right person to get it done.
He also flew for the first time earlier this month. Mrs. RB40 went on a 2 week business trip so we took the opportunity to visit my brothers in California. He had the window seat and he liked the take off. He especially enjoyed having orange juice and peanuts served. We did have a little issue on the descent, though. We were in the restroom when the captain told everyone to get back to their seat. He finished “making water” and then we went back to our seats. Of course, a couple of minutes later he wanted to go “make poopoo…” I told him we had to wait until we finish landing and he cried a bit. I think the ear pressure was also a factor. Anyway, we made it to the airport restrooms and didn’t make life difficult for our poor flight attendant.
So now that we know he can handle flying, we want to travel again. I’m thinking about taking a family trip to Hawaii with my mom and brothers this winter. I want to check out the Big Island to see if it’s a feasible retirement destination for us. We visited Oahu, Kauai, and Maui when we were childless and we liked them all. Kauai was our favorite destination, but I think the housing price is really crazy over there. I heard that the Big Island is more affordable, so I’d like to check it out.
We used to travel internationally almost every year when we were younger, but we haven’t done a major overseas trip since 2009. Over the last few years, I have been hearing more about travel hacking and I am fascinated. Many people are able to travel for a nominal fee or free by taking advantage of reward miles. Airlines have partnered up with credit card companies to offer some great sign up bonuses. I have been ignoring travel hacking so far because we didn’t really want to travel with a baby. Now that RB40 Jr. is ready to see the world, I want to get in the game, too. Who wouldn’t want to travel for free?
Well, there is a downside. We’d have to sign up for more credit cards to get these bonuses. Currently, I only have one personal and one business credit card. This is great because it’s so easy to keep track of all my expenses. If I sign up for more cards, then I’d have to spend time and energy to manage them. It wasn’t worth it when we couldn’t travel. Now that we can travel again, I’m all for this.
Here is the first card I’m signing up for.
Barclay Arrival Mastercard
- Earn 40,000 bonus miles if you make $1,000 or more in purchases in the first 90 days from account opening. 40,000 bonus miles equates to $400 off your next trip!
- $89 annual fee waived for the first year
- No foreign transaction fees!
- 0% introductory APR on purchases for the first 12 months after account opening. After that, variable APR, currently 14.99% or 18.99%, based upon your creditworthiness.
- Earn 2X miles on all purchases
- Get 10% miles back when you redeem for travel (i.e. redeem 40,000 miles for travel and receive 4,000 miles bonus)
- Use miles for a statement credit toward any airline purchase to any destination with no seat restrictions and no blackout dates
- Easily redeem your miles for statement credits toward flights, cruises, car rentals, hotels and more
- Complimentary FICO® Scores as a benefit to active card members. Opt-in to have instant and convenient access to FICO® Scores from your Barclaycard online account.
Apply here for Barclaycard Arrival(TM) World MasterCard® – Earn 2x on All Purchases ($89 fee waived for the first year)
If you don’t want to deal with the annual fee, there is also a no fee version: Barclaycard Arrival(TM) World MasterCard® – Earn 1x on All Purchases. However, the signup bonus is 20,000 miles instead of 40,000 miles.
I’ll apply for a card myself and then perhaps Mrs. RB40 can apply for another card. We’ll see if that works out. A fight ticket to the Big Island in February is about $450 so it’s not quite a free flight. It’ll help quite a lot. I’ll write a follow up
Disclosure: We do get a referral fee if you sign up for the card through the links on this page.