Earn thousands of Avios through hotel bookings
Ironically probably the best way to earn air miles is by lying on your back in hotels rather than in the air. Airlines are now mainly aligning the amount of miles you make to the price of your fare and the fare classes most of us will find ourselves will inevitably earn just a fraction of the distance flown.
Luckily with a lot of travel comes hotel nights which are now one of the best ways to rack up the miles we were used to a couple of years ago. (Unless you fly Alaska who are still cool and give you the actual distance you fly) there are various websites Such as Rocketmiles and Kaligo that will show up upfront what bonus miles you can get booking certain hotels for a wide variety of airlines.
I always check these back to booking.com to check if they are charging a substantial mark up to the actual rate which sometimes is the case and others isn’t. If that mark up isn’t much these sites are great for some decent hauls, the more expensive the room the better. One problem with these though is you are paying upfront, with restrictions and you lose any points or membership perks from the hotel chain where you are staying.
A recent development which is the best of both worlds is the major hotel chains are starting to show up in the airline shopping portals. From these points are awarded when you click through to the hotels actual sites not an affiliate. This means you earn from the portal and from the hotels themselves so you still receive your perks... perfect right.
Currently if booking through executive club you you can get 5 Avios per $ spent with IHG and 3 with Marriott Bonvoy. So a $1000 stay at an Intercontinental earns you all your IHG Points plus 5,000 Avios which is essentially a free flight within Europe.
In summary if it’s a one off stay somewhere where your preferred chain has no presence book with Rocketmiles and collect the miles. If you have status or are chasing it use a shopping portal and double dip!!!