Popular gay travel destinations are affordable for anyone with a good to excellent credit score. Apply for travel rewards credit cards and use their signup bonuses to cover a round-trip flight and week-long hotel stay. Here is a ready recipe of your dream vacation at the legendary European gay travel resort Mykonos. Follow all the steps and enjoy Mykonos for free!

Time: 1-9 months

Complexity Level: 1-2

Participants: 1

Estimated price: $700 hotel, $1,300 flight

Cards: Marriott Rewards® Premier credit card, Chase Sapphire Reserve℠, Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card

Destination: Mykonos

The Greek Island of Mykonos is the oldest of ‘Big 4’ gay travel destinations in Europe. There you can find all sorts of nightlife, enjoy open-air concerts, world-level DJs and artists, as well as annual cultural events like the Summer festival, the Gay festival, and the Harvest festival. Besides that, beaches and bathing are at your full disposal.

The best time to visit Mykonos is within the period from May to September, during the bathing season. Depending on the year, April and October may be equally good.


How to get and redeem points

You’ll need to apply for three credit cards to arrange the journey for free. Signup bonuses from the Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ cover your flight expenses. And the signup bonus from the Marriott Rewards® Premier credit card is sufficient to pay for your hotel stay.

Booking a flight

Apply for two credit cards from Chase – Sapphire Preferred® and Sapphire Reserve℠.

These two cards offer a 50,000-point signup bonus each. To get the bonus, you have to spend $4,000 within the first three months of account opening. To avoid overspending, you may allocate more time for earning bonuses – at first, apply for one card; three months later, the other one. Depending on your monthly spendings, receiving signup bonuses may take from three to six months.

Once you’ve received both of the bonuses, transfer points from your Sapphire Preferred® account to your Sapphire Reserve℠ account. This small hack increases the redemption rate of Sapphire Reserve℠ points.

Now it’s time to book your flights. Use the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal for searching and booking, then your points will be redeemed at the highest possible rate – 100,000 points here are equal to $1,500. This is absolutely enough to book non-stop flights for two people from New-York (or other U.S. locations) to Athens and back, pay for checking in your bags and sometimes even upgrading to a higher class. All for free!

Please bear in mind that you arrive in Athens not Mykonos. There is a short piece of your trip requiring some cash. Not a lot, from $20 to $150 depending on your preferences:

  • From Athens you may take a fast ferry to Mykonos. A one-way ticket costs about $10-$20. A one-way trip takes from two to six hours, so you’ll see all the best views. Check your options for the Athens – Mykonos route.
  • Alternatively, you may go by plane, check for available flights to Mykonos here olympicair.com or here en.aegeanair.com. Prices for a round-way flight starts from $125.

Booking hotel

To cover your hotel stay, apply for the Marriott Rewards® Premier credit card. It offers a 80,000 signup bonus to those who spend at least $3,000 with this card within the first three months of account opening.

Once the bonus is received, go to the Marriott rewards portal and redeem your points for a six-day stay at the only Marriott property on the Mykonos island – a four-star superior hotel: Courtyard Linz. Simple as it is!

How to meet the minimum spending requirement

Do some math first, and decide if you can get the bonus with your typical monthly expenses.

For example, dividing $4,000 of the minimum spending amount onto three months, we get about $1,333 per month.

If this amount is higher than your typical monthly spendings, apply for the card with a signup bonus before a planned big-ticket purchase. Or you may pay your rent or taxes with the card, but in these cases, you will be charged with a fee.

Plan your gay travel vacation in advance, and you’ll avoid overspending.

The bottom line

Planning in advance may result in a dream vacation in one of the best European gay travel destinations for free. To arrange this once-in-a-lifetime experience, apply for these three credit cards: the Marriott Rewards® Premier credit card + Chase Sapphire Reserve℠ + the Chase Sapphire Preferred® credit card.