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Homeless Executive Lives Off of Rewards Points

Here’s proof that all those frequent-flier miles and rewards points you’ve racked up are good for more than a subscription to Golf Digest.

Skip Nail | Photodisc | Getty Images

Jim Kennedy, a 46-year-old executive in Southern California, went from six figures to homeless in less than two years after he lost his job as a corporate-development manager, had to file for bankruptcy and then lost his Newport Beach condo to foreclosure, the OC Register reports.

Now, he’s using the more than one million frequent-flier miles and rewards points he accrued in his career to survive and help stretch the few dollars he has.

He’s not your typical homeless guy: He drives around in a leased BMW, but hops from hotel to hotel, including a stay at the Motel 6, and tries to keep his food budget to $5 a day. He looks for places with free Internet to facilitate his job search.

He’s found that mixing cash and points gives you the best value. This week, he’s at a Holiday Inn in San Clemente Calif., paying $25 a night, after cashing in 5,000 United Airlines miles. Bonus: Free breakfast!

You can cash in miles for more than hotels and magazines — you can use them to buy food (be it at a restaurant or Kmart), drugstore items, clothing, gasoline — even a haircut!

Kennedy estimates his million miles will stretch about five months, according to other reports.

Call it the Platinum Homeless-Rewards Program: Never leave home without it!

You can follow Kennedy on Twitter at @HomelessThomOC .

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