84. Nicky Kelvin; The Points Guy UK on Mongolian Rockets, Israeli Biker Gangs, Dicing with Mugabe in Zimbabwe and Great Travel Deals - The Big Travel Podcast

Episode 84
January 13 , 2020

84. Nicky Kelvin; The Points Guy UK on Mongolian Rockets, Israeli Biker Gangs, Dicing with Mugabe in Zimbabwe and Great Travel Deals

The face of The Points Guy UK, a website showing us how to get the most from points and miles whose US site has over 75 million unique visitors a year. Nicky Kelvin’s own travel journey started with cheap flights courtesy of his cabin crew sister and moved on to climbing Kilimanjaro, accidentally setting fire to a Mongolian hillside, working as a photojournalist (oh and a Manny) in Israel and he was once forced to pay £600 for a jam sandwich in Zimbabwe in order to escape the Mugabe regime unscathed.


On this episode we cover:


Helping you get the most of points and miles

75 million unique visitors a year

Their YouTube channel with 29 million views

More of us travelling than ever

Not being able to afford a house – let’s travel!

Aspirational but achievable travel

How to fly first class by playing the miles and points game

Lisa’s recent Ethiopian Airlines first class

Always being an ‘aviation geek’

His BA cabin crew sister sparked his travel bug

Student trips to Hong Kong and the Caribbean

Watching mass games in North Korea being other-wordly

Launching rockets in a Mongolian army base

Setting a Mongolian hill on fire

Cambodia’s killing fields

Shooting an AK47

Not exploding any cows

Getting mugged in Mexico

Then getting ripped off by the police

Aggressive West Bank Monastery boys and their donkey

Working as a photojournalist in Israel (oh and a lawyer and also a ‘Manny’!)

Photographing migrant workers, prostitutes and drug dealers in Tel Aviv

Wanting to show the unseen side of destinations

How anyone conflicted about Israel needs to spend time there

Touring Bethlehem with a Palestinian Harley Davison gang

The Church of the Nativity in Manger Square

Lisa in Eilat and sailing from Israel to Egypt down the red sea

Those moments when you travel where you never really know if you’re ok

Climbing Kilimanjaro, going to Rwanda, gorillas in the Congo, loving Malawi

A £600 jam sandwich in Zimbabwe

Having to bribe a cleaner to access local currency

Mugabe and the potential to be ‘disappeared’

Feeling they’d escaped Harare by the skin of the teeth

Lisa’s recent trip to Addis Ababa

Ethiopia being an especially brilliant place to go

Lisa and Nicky’s embarrassment of not having been to South Africa

Lisa naming and shaming her friend (sorry, Fran!)

Imagining a world where we didn’t travel

But keeping an eye on the eco issue

How travel can create a better world

More of the world understanding

The romance of seeing somewhere very different

The Beach movie and book inspiring travel

Are You Experienced by William Sutcliffe (yes I’ve mentioned it again)

(then he came on The Big Travel Podcast)

Nicky’s top tips for the best deals

The shopping portals that elevate points earning

The beginners guide with nine basic steps

Working as a music lawyer

The Garden State soundtrack

The wonderful feeling of listening to ‘the BA song’

The buzz of coming home on a British Airways flight and immediately feeling at home (no we are not being paid by BA (sadly…), we are just both fans!)

Being proud to be Australian but not actually being Australian…