Point Me to the Plane flags a story about cheating spouses traveling in order to carry on their affairs.
“There’s no better time to pursue a discreet affair than when you’re hundreds or even thousands of miles away from home,” said AshleyMadison.com founder Noel Biderman. “Our members have stated that the distance not only lessens their fear of getting caught, but also alleviates feelings of guilt.”
…And how on earth do these cheaters pay for these rendezvous without getting caught? Turns out more than half pay for it through a business trip, either directly on a corporate card or through a rewards program (no paper trail!) or by adding days onto a business trip.
Using miles under the belief that there’s “no paper trail” seems naive at best. Sure, strictly speaking the tickets are electronic but
- You pay taxes on the award ticket with a credit card, and using miles would seem to undermine the story about being gone on a business trip.
- Frequent flyer accounts will show the redemption. I guess this assumes that the spouse being cheated on doesn’t have access to the family AwardWallet account.
In the case of paid trips it might be advisable not to accrue miles so that the real details aren’t visible to a spouse logging in to see changes in a points balance. But what frequent flyer aficionado can walk away from earned miles — elite qualifying miles no less! Perhaps cheaters open separate mileage accounts and accrue with alliance partners?
Pondering whether Vanilla Reload purchases loaded onto Bluebird cards are really just ways of putting money onto a prepaid card that generates no paper statement. Are cheaters more likely to use Bluebird? Is “manufactured spend” really a myth — a cover for illicit activity?
Unlikely. Divorce is a scary thing for frequent flyers. Marriage means double the people to apply for cards, and household income will again be permitted on card applications.
Point Me to the Plane also seems to have a theme going, having posted suggesting that inflating ones income on card applications could be used as proof of higher income in divorce proceedings. I expressed skepticism in the comments, and the divorce attorney guest-writing the post conceded the more likely scenario was using true statements about income as evidence to combat artificially low reported income in divorce proceedings.
Nonetheless, there are very strong reasons for frequent flyers not to cheap. Entirely apart from moral considerations. Miles are too easily tracked. They’re hard to walk away from. And being married doubles your opportunity for card signup bonuses. What miles and points junkie would risk that??
That’s why I considered it a mistake for AshleyMadison.com to offer the city of Phoenix $10 million for the naming rights to Sky Harbor airport for five years. When the city turned it down, they were really just offering the cheating website sound business advice.