No, really. They’re probably not.

I do a lot of award booking for people who get absolutely pissed off when there is no low level availability in first class for the family of four during the holidays to Australia on a direct flight.

And they’re not willing to fly economy. Or fly with a stop or two or three. Or split the family up onto two separate flights. Or be flexible on the dates. Or the destination.

If that sounds like you, points and miles aren’t for you.

That’s not to say that traveling isn’t for you, and that you can’t save money on your travels, though! You should definitely still travel if you want to, just concentrate on maximizing your cash back through cards like the Citi Fidelity Card or the Barclay Arrival Card, or even taking advantage of programs like Southwest where you can book any available seat that can be paid for with cash.

Flexibility is key when using points and miles, and if you don’t have any, it is going to be so so hard to use your miles. It pretty much comes down to luck at that point (especially for premium cabins).

And despite the fact that I spend wayyyy too many hours looking at award charts, flyertalk, blog posts, airline routes, and award availability almost everyday, I am not a wizard and if the availability isn’t there, there is absolutely nothing I can do about it.