Gaming Frequent Flyer Miles From Your Credit Card

Making a luxury purchase like a new car, a Nokia bling-phone, a face lift, a funeral, a blackmarket baby? Why not charge it to your airline-branded credit card and get yourself some free miles to boot?

The Washington Post has a look up at the Frequent Flyer mile wheeler and dealers who are totally gaming the system. Like Ann Scharpf of Maryland, who will buy $5000 worth of groceries for her and every single person she knows, then pay it all back in the same month for a free trip to St. Petersburg.

Of course, even the Washington Post can’t ignore the absurdity of people going through so much bother to get Frequent Flyer miles at a time when it’s almost impossible to turn them in. What they don’t say is that it’s largely because of people like this that it’s almost impossible to redeem them. Not that we’re criticizing — hey, they’re working the system, and we admire them for that. Just keep that in mind next-time you get frustrated that you have to spend four hours trying to redeem a free flight to Papua New Guinea from that Porsche you convinced Nick Denton to reimburse you for.

Shop Till You Fly [Washington Post]