5 years, 50 states. Welcome aboard Stephen!

Stephen Pepper has just joined the Frequent Miler team as a part time Quick Deal author.  Given that Nick is about to become a father, there was no doubt that we could use the help.  And, hopefully the additional revenue from this part time position will help Stephen and his wife (and their adorable dog) with their incredible road trip.  They plan to spend the next 5 years visiting all 50 US states.

5 years should give the trio plenty of time to explore each state in-depth.  Stephen writes:

That’d give us an average of five weeks in each state, spending less time in smaller states (sorry Rhode Island) and more time in larger states (hellooooooo California).

And they plan to use points & miles to help make it all possible.  Stephen writes:

In 2014, I’d started learning about airline miles and hotel point reward schemes. We’d been avidly collecting miles and points so we could travel for free and I’d been learning as much as I could about how to make those points go even further.

Based on how much we were earning through my other websites and how we could maximize our points for free hotel stays, we realized this long-held dream of an epic 50 state road trip was actually possible.

Follow Along

Stephen will be documenting his road trip on his own blog: No Home Just Roam.  Visit the site and sign up for emails to keep up to date with his journey.  Or, if you’d like to see Stephen’s Frequent Miler posts, this link will take you there: thefrequentmiler.com/author/stephenp/.

Welcome

Please join me in welcoming Stephen to the team!

Last updated on September 3rd, 2018

About Greg The Frequent Miler

Greg is the owner, founder, and primary author of the Frequent Miler. He earns millions of points and miles each year, mostly without flying, and dedicates this blog to teaching others how to do the same.

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Recap: Chase Pre-Approval Tip, $250,000 In Airline Compensation & More - Doctor Of CreditMiles Expiration, Travel Hackers Credit Card Debt, Most Remote Places, IHG Rewards Club Category Changes - TravelBloggerBuzzStephen PepperLonn BoyerAnastasia Recent comment authors

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Nick Reyes
Editor

Welcome aboard, Stephen! Great to have you here.

Eli C
Guest
Eli C

Welcome Stephen, bon voyage, that’s awesome!

Congrats Nick!

Dee
Guest
Dee

Welcome, Stephen!

Good luck and congratulations, Nick.

Thanks, Greg, for steering the ship and years of great advice.

Sophia
Guest
Sophia

Congratulations Stephen!

Santiago
Guest
Santiago

Congrats on becoming a Father Nick, Welcome Stephen!

Stephen Pepper
Member

Thanks Greg and everyone – I’m really happy to be on board!

Ramzi
Guest
Ramzi

Very excited for your contribution Stephen. Welcome!

Anastasia
Guest
Anastasia

Welcome, Stephen! (Your dog is ADORABLE, by the way). Hoping you enjoy my home state of Michigan on your road trip – hit me up if you need any tips about what to see!

Stephen Pepper
Member

Thank you! We’re always after local suggestions, so we’d love to know any of the best places to go in Michigan.

Anastasia
Guest
Anastasia

Oh boy! (hope it’s okay to post advice here, I figured that way others can take advantage of it as well)

Obviously the thing we’re famous for is probably the Great Lakes, and they are truly stunning. My favorite is Lake Michigan – there’s lots of small towns and gorgeous beaches along it, and the lake is so large you feel like you’re at the edge of the sea! (a freshwater sea). We’ve vacationed often in the towns of Holland and White Lake, which are extremely lovely. If you’re going in the summer or early fall (which I hope you do), it is a must see! Plus, if you go farther north, you can enjoy many of our sand dunes. (that’s my spiel for the obvious attraction)

We have a town called Hell, Michigan, which took every joke, idiom, and gimmick possible and embraced them wholeheartedly. For $100, you can be mayor of Hell for a day; at the end of the day, they impeach you. There’s also a Hell Hole diner and everything else you could possibly think of: https://www.gotohellmi.com/

Detroit also has a few great attractions (despite everything you’ve heard about it). The Detroit Institute of Arts has one of the best art collections I’ve seen, including a breathtaking Diego Riviera mural. It also has some great 20th century architecture, and the oldest aquarium in the U.S. Grand Rapids also has a fantastic art museum and extensive and also very lovely Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. The Amway Grand Plaza is a grand historic (1920s) hotel in the city, and it’s a Hilton (Curio collection) so you can redeem points!

The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village are also a must. The Museum has an extensive collection of what they call “American artifacts,” including old cars, a replica of the Rosa Parks bus, early airplanes, and much more. Greenfield Village is an extensive historical “village,” where you can ride a model T, see blacksmiths and glassblowers, visit historic houses, while many of the employees wear historic dress. It’s intended to be a kind of “immersive” experience.

Lansing (the capital) is not very interesting at all. You could go see the capitol if you feel that you must, but otherwise there’s absolutely nothing in that area of any interest.

I’m also guessing that this won’t apply to you, since I assume your road trip involves a car, but our public transit isn’t great (being the heart of the car industry and all). there’s some buses, and a train that from Detroit to Chicago with some stops, but mostly you’ll need to drive between cities and in many cities.

I also highly suggest the website Atlas Obscura, as they list many of the unique and bizarre attractions that you’d want to see on a road trip, but that aren’t always featured in tour guides.

Hope that helped!

Stephen Pepper
Member

Wow, that list is amazing – thanks! I’ve added all those things to our spreadsheet tab for Michigan.

My wife was born in Detroit, so we’re planning on spending some time there. And being mayor of Hell for a day is something we’ll DEFINITELY be doing!

Tammy Bunch
Guest

Congratulations to Stephen regarding this fantastic opportunity! Nick thank so excited that you have brought Stephen on board! We are very proud of our son-in-Law, daughter and grand puppy for following their dreams! We look forward to now following you as well!

Stephen Pepper
Member

Thank you Mom!

William Charles
Guest

Welcome! You’ve always provided good tips and information to me via e-mail, so looking forward to your additions here as well.

Stephen Pepper
Member

Thanks Will 🙂

Wei
Guest

Congrats Nick! Could have said that in person when we met at Chicago Seminar. Wei@MilesMoneyBall.com

Steve, look forward to reading new FM writings from you!

Lonn Boyer
Guest
Lonn Boyer

Congratulations on your upcoming accomplishment. However, as a single dad, I have already taken my two minor children and extended family, while working full time, to all 50 states to educate and allow them to experience the unique history and diversity of cultures of each state that make up our nation. These trips have cost virtually nothing by using air miles and hotel points and I haven’t had a blog or other revenue generating site to help compensate or provide me an additional income in order to travel. It is great that you are able to be paid in order accomplish your long held dream, however, I find it hard to brag about an up coming accomplishment when I’ve been able to make this happen many times over.

Lonn Boyer
Guest
Lonn Boyer

By the way, when you go to Alaska, go to Barrow and to the Inupiat Heritage Center, also go to the Gates of the Artic National Park, and when in Nome drive to the village Teller and experience a true subsistence living village. This is a true experience of Alaska and not the typical tourist excursion.

Stephen Pepper
Member

Excellent – thanks for the tips!

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[…] 5 years, 50 states. Welcome aboard Stephen! by Frequent Miler. Welcome to Stephen (and congratulations to Nick with the baby on the way). As mentioned in the comments Stephen has always provided good tips and information to me via e-mail, so looking forward to his additions to FM as well. […]