12 Replies Latest reply: Dec 21, 2014 4:58 PM by erc RSS

USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC

insidenji Gold 6 Reviews
Currently Being Moderated

I'm on USA Today's Road Warrior Panel and got an email today about an event in DC December 5-7 and I've copied in some info below.  If anyone is interested in attending here is a link to register and also more info.  It is at the Hyatt in Crystal City but being the Marriott gal that I am I just booked the Renaissance Arlington Capital View which is very close.

Has anyone ever been to one of these?  It will be the first time for me and even though I've been a frequent flyer for a little more than 25 years I bet I could learn something new.  I hope it will be fun.


http://ftuniversity.wpengine.com/events/ftu-washington-dc/

 

The world’s most popular educational event about maximizing your miles and points has been reinvented, and is back in Washington, DC! For the first time, we’ve partnered with USA TODAY to bring you the best event possible. There will be more speakers, more sessions and a Frequent Flyer Holiday Party hosted by Hyatt and Milepoint!

This event will cater to a wide variety of skill levels, from those looking to learn about miles for the first time, to those who consider themselves experts but want to learn a little more. Our slate of presenters will include:

– Ben Mutzabaugh, USA TODAY Travel
– Gary Leff, View from the Wing
– Ben Schlappig, One Mile at a Time
– Greg Davis-Kean, FrequentMiler
– Stefan Krasowski, Rapid Travel Chai
– Matthew Klint, Live and Let’s Fly
– Scott Mackenzie, Hack my Trip
– Daraius Dubash, Million Mile Secrets
– Summer Hull, Mommy Points
– Ed Pizzarello, Pizza in Motion
Matthew Kepnes, Nomadic Matt
– Randy Petersen, The Godfather of Frequent Flyer Miles, founder of Milepoint & Flyertalk

From Fuel Dumps to First Class you’ll learn everything you need to know about travel, miles and points! This event is open to everyone who wants to go further with their points and is ready to Learn, Earn and Burn.

(For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
    erc Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    This is good stuff insidenji, if I wasn't in Florida (possibly at vaboywnder's MCV Grand Vista) those days I'd have joined you at Jaleo, Legal Seafood, or Ted's Montana Grill for a post game analysis. Please share with us any good info you pick up at the conference. Thanks for spotlighting this.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

    • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
      insidenji Gold 6 Reviews
      Currently Being Moderated

      Hey there erc

       

      You’re welcome; I thought this sounded like fun.  If anyone else will be in the area let me know and we can meet for a drink.

       

      I just missed the get-together in DC on the 7th (my 45 year high school reunion is that week-end) but I did book a trip to DC next weekend (the 31st – Nov 3rd) and I was going to stay at the Gateway in Crystal City but the rate wasn’t bad at the Mayflower so I booked that instead.  I’ll warm up a seat or two in the bar so it they will be ready for the Insiders. Wish I could join in the fun.

       

      And yes, I’ll report back to everyone after the seminars at the FTU event; an AAR (After Action Review) and post it.

       

      Have a great weekend all.

      (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

    • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
      vaboywnder Alumni Steward Platinum 21 Reviews
      Currently Being Moderated

      insidenji

       

      Good Stuff...thanks for posting.  Looks like there will be some interesting guests there.  Let us know how it goes!

       

      erc,

      If you stay at the Grande Vista make sure you ask for a Lake View. Also feel free to stop by the MVC office there and tell them to loose my number.  I've gotten two phones calls from them this week that I just let go straight to voice-mail.  I want to hear a full report when you get back.  Also when in Hotlanta...if your feeling adventurous you should check out one of my fave spots "Cowtippers" in Midtown. http://cowtippersatlanta.com/

      (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

      • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
        erc Platinum
        Currently Being Moderated

        Wow, first bejacob with his strong feelings about the CY rankings and now vaboywnder gettin' feisty with his social recommendations, what next, the third member of the well behaved triumvirate ssindc concerned about not getting concierge contact? Marriott's in trouble if the 'good guys' start acting like the rabble rousers IAHFLYR and yours truly.  insidenji  see if they have a panel discussion on loyalty programs, "Keeping the good, in line" .

         

        Whereas I was originally scheduled for a Buckhead stay at the Lenox JW, I've now moved further north, so I won't get a chance to drop by Piedmont Village (attended a film festival there, a good vibe), but I'll keep that bovine place in mind for future visits.

         

        One of the benefits of being a n'er do well with loads of time on my hand is that I can take a Seinfeldian approach to those pesky sales calls. Rarely do I get them, because I seldom give out my 'stuff', but in the rare cases where they do crack the code and call me, I often will tell them up front, "I'm not interested, but I'm quite lonely; let me grab a beer and you can take 30 minutes of your time and then I'll tell you no"  it's pretty effective (and I do follow through in the rare case where someone takes me up on the offer, almost always with them sighing at the end, "man, you weren't kidding, this was a waste of my time"

         

        Ok, off to Georgia, with my proudly earned A zone boarding pass with Southwest. Aloha

        (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

        • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
          ssindc Platinum 42 Reviews
          Currently Being Moderated

          hey, erc, just to clarify, expressions of frustration and open-minded inquiry don't always rise to the level of rabble-rousing... having said that, it is possible to get really, really frustrated...  but that's a topic for another day.

           

          Personally, even though the property in question remains nonresponsive, I'm feeling pretty sanguine about Marriott this week because I recently received excellent service through the Platinum line.  I called to vent about the latest MegaBonus promotion, which - for inexplicable rationales that I simply cannot comprehend - only accumulate at the rate of one room per night, even if your family (or party) has booked two, or even three rooms.  (Aren't the ultimate goals to (1) fill rooms and (2) maximize revenue?  What am I missing?)  Anyway, the helpful representative converted me to "double points" during the MegaBonus period, which will reflect my revenue generation or, might we suggest, brand loyalty....  For now, that's a happy ending....

          (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
    lindseyh Community Manager Marriott Associate Member
    Currently Being Moderated

    Cool! This looks like a great event, insidenji Can't wait to hear all about it!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
    erc Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    insidenji

     

    Have a great time and be sure to share some ideas (like the sensei master who doesn't teach the student the one last 'knockout punch', feel free to keep the very best one for yourself , you deserve it) as you help us,

     

     

    and yes Insiders, even in this joyous holiday season of giving; it's us or The Greater Team and I choose us!

    Keep on keepin' on Insiders - Go man, go

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
    skiadcock Platinum 4 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    I'm a Road Warrior too & got the same email.  I've been to a couple of these & know the people/am friends with who organize them.  Their first one I chaired the charity raffle.  There can be good info at them, but the best part quite frankly is with the other attendees & exchanging information.  The folk organizing FTU have turned it more into a bizness at this point (which is fine) & hold a few a year.  They're also good marketers, hence roping USAToday to sponsor/promote it   You'll see primarily the same speakers at each one, so if you miss one not to worry.  You can always get info at the next one.

     

    Full disclosure: I chair the charity raffle at the Chicago Seminars Event, which is a similar event to FTU, but is all volunteer run and happens only once/year in Chicago in October, and most of the same speakers are at it.  It's less expensive than FTU.  I moderate the Marriott break-out session at the CSE. All proceeds from the charity raffle and any funds left over after expenses are paid go to charity, so the books close out at zero each year.  It's not a bizness.

     

    The thing about FTU/seminar events is so much information is thrown at folk it can be a bit overwhelming, so I tell people to try & get one idea from each session & they're good.  And that not everyone is an expert & has a gazillion miles/points in all things.  There's a broad range of knowledge (and lack of) at these events.

     

    Cheers.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: USA Today Travel FTU (Frequent Traveler University) Washington DC
    erc Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    insidenji

    Hope you had a good and productive trip. Anything good worth sharing? Thanks

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

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