When Scott Ford was laid off from his job in New York City back in 2008, he headed to JFK International Airport without thinking of anything other than getting on a plane to visit friends in sunny San Diego.
And when the Delta Airlines gate agent announced he needed a volunteer to be bumped from the flight because the plane was overbooked, Ford idly lifted his hand and accepted a voucher for a future flight.
"Suddenly, it clicked," says Ford, a native of Dayton, Ohio, who now makes his home in Portland, Ore. "Since I was unemployed I had the free time and flexible schedule to travel as much as I wanted if I could find a way to afford it."
As Ford accumulated travel vouchers and frequent flier miles by getting bumped from as many flights as possible, he developed a plan to spend every week of 2011 on vacation.
While not every traveler has the time and flexibility to voluntarily miss a flight, Ford's experiences offer a blueprint that some fliers can use to garner some of their own free travel.
Click through our gallery for Ford's top ten tips.