Over 225 Have Signed up for the Chicago Frequent Flyer Seminar October 29-30

Rick Ingersoll emails to let me know that 225 people have registered for the Chicago frequent flyer seminar that’s being held October 29 and 30 at the Holiday Inn Elk Grove Village (same location as last year, where the entire hotel was dedicated to the event for the weekend).

The host hotel is completely sold out, but rooms are still available at the overflow hotel, the Holiday Inn and Suites O’Hare/Rosemont.

Full details are in this discussion thread on Milepoint and registration is here.

The event is sponsored by AwardWallet, Electric Wombats, ExpertFlyer, Milepoint, and ITASoftware. Costs are $75 per person which includes lunch on Saturday and Sunday.

I’ll be giving a talk on frequent flyer award booking, hHow to identify the best value uses of your points, find award seats, and navigate the call with your mileage program to secure the flights.

Ben from the One Mile at a Time blog and Rick from Frugal Travel Guy are both speakers. So is the legendary “Pudding Guy” who earned all those miles years ago from Healthy Choice pudding (and who inspired the P.T. Anderson / Adam Sandler film, “Punch Drunk Love). There’ll be a talk on advanced priceline techniques and mileage runs. And Captain Denny Flanagan will be there. So will Steve Belkin, the guy who hired Thai rice farmers to fly and earn him miles (and international upgrades), and who leverages huge credit card signup offers by managing the accounts of dozens of friends and family..

Hope to meet many of you there!

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. And maybe a virtual event is worth looking at for this type of thing; there are a lot of us that just can’t get away for such a conference but would love to be part of it.

  2. @Michael they are not, and that’s something to take up with the organizers, while I come out and speak I’m not involved in the logistics.

  3. Hopefully you can pass along a good word as I’m sure it’ll mean more coming from you. Such a forward thinking group, as FFs are, should look to extend its reach. Unless this is just another elite club (which it very well may be) looking to protect its secrets 🙂

  4. @Michael I completely agree. I shot an email to ThePointsGuy (TPG) a while back about this too. I would gladly pay for a streaming or recorded webinar of this event. Perhaps individuals presenting their respective topics at the conference would be interested in making just their individual segments available.

  5. I get the joke 🙂 but to be clear this isn’t a Milepoint event, Rick Ingersoll and some other frequent travelers are putting it together themselves. It’s being discussed online, and Milepoint is one of the groups that agreed to provide some cash to help out as a sponsor.

  6. Look forward to meeting you Gary. I appreciate you taking the time to attend. And thanks again to Rick for setting it up.

  7. @Michael:

    I am one of the organizers of the Chicago Seminars 2011.

    Most of the presenters do not want this material online in easy-to-digest form that can be immediately accessed by millions, including the airlines/hotels/CC companies. It would get too many things killed. I assume you have heard of Airfarewatchdog and what they did to a certain trick.

    Gary has written before about some of the other reasons presenters may not want to be recorded.

    Much of what these guys discuss at the Seminars can be easily found on Flyertalk and Milepoint. Newbies will save a ton of time attending something like this, with many top experts in one spot willing to give unvarnished private advice.

    The social aspects of the weekend IMO are at least as valuable as the info you get in the Seminars. You network with a LOT of people whose knowledge can be very valuable, and of course yours is useful to them.

    And I want to see what gpapadop dresses up as for the Halloween party!

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