Well, this is odd. It’s Christmas and I’m at home. For as long as I can remember, I have been on the road for Christmas and usually out of the country for New Year’s Eve (see the NYE destination list here. Last year was Bangkok).
After moving back to Scottsdale two weeks ago, I have had no desire to travel.
Silence comes over the audience.
While celebrating Festivus by complaining, the Ghost of Christmas past knocked on my door and told me to be a bit more upbeat. Heeding his advice, I began to reminisce about all the great places I have spent Christmas in the past. While points travel didn’t formally come into my life until 2011, I still was able to travel well before that. The United States, Canada, and Mexico were my Christmas/New Years destinations from 2000 to 2005 which is why my Scrooge journey starts in 2006.
2006: Tokyo, Japan: In 2006, I was actually flying over the North Pole en route to Tokyo. Back then, I paid for tickets and traveling on Christmas was a good way to save money.
2007: Grand Blanc, Michigan: That Christmas I was unaware that I would receive coal in my stocking by way of finding out that I couldn’t go to Brazil for NYE because I didn’t know about the visa requirement (see my list of Visa Blunders). I ended up going to Bahamas which was still a fun time.
2010: Cartagena, Colombia: The first time Aguardiente struck. 2011: Grand Blanc, Michigan en route to New Orleans: Who can forget the fool’s gold of Michigan going to The Sugar Bowl. This was the year I officially started churning when I applied for the SPG personal card. 2012: Goa, India: As a points newbie, I used my FlexPerks to get here. Ah the memories of the NorthWest card. This was also my first time flying business on points. It was aboard Lufthansa in the days of the angled flat seats.
2013: Rangali Island, Maldives: Beautiful Maldives at the forgettable Conrad. This was part of my $77,000 Trip Heard Round the World which began with the hashtag #thepointslife. 2014: Yangon, Myanmar: The aforementioned hashtag evolved into a domain and in March 2014, The Points Of Life was born. In order to escape miserable Mongolia, I went to magical Myanmar. The whole journey is documented in the So Long Mongolia, Hello SE Asia Trip Report.2015: New York, New York: From Mongolia to Manhattan, TPOL in NYC Trip Report documents my 2015 move. That Christmas was unseasonably warm and was highlighted by the SantaCon spectacle. 2016: Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia: Where else would you want to spend Christmas? This delightful city was part of my Year of the Monkey Trip Report.
2017: Scottsdale, Arizona: I don’t plan on being in Scottsdale for long which is why the Trip Report, TPOL in the Desert was made. While it’s not as exotic as other places on this list, who can complain about not having a white Christmas?
See people? I do more than complain!