American Express Points Match Program

Discussion in 'American Express | Membership Rewards' started by Zomby Woof, Jan 21, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. Zomby Woof

    Zomby Woof Silver Member

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    This is a targeted promo for business card members and almost seems too good to be true. Use MR points 1-to-1 for an award ticket on United or American. AMEX buys a revenue ticket, deducts the same amount of points as you would have used miles, then provides a statement credit less taxes/fees. I don't get why there has to be award space on the flights you want but AMEX doesn't redeem for an award ticket.

    https://www.americanexpress.com/us/small-business/pointsmatch
     
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  2. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Very interesting. And seems like it is ripe to be gamed in some ways.
     
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  3. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    My guess on this is that they want to have more control on the points and are going to leverage the AMEX travel entity to do it. Just one guess would be that they use the travel entity volume discounts and relationships to issue the ticket for you which may cost less for them than buying the same number of miles from the airline partner when you move them over.
     
  4. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    They say in the fine print that the booked ticket may be refundable. I can easily see an arbitrage-esque play of converting points to flight credits well above the typical rates with this sort of thing. Imagine booking a fully refundable quick turn EWR-FRA-EWR for 340,000 points and then having a fully flexible $10k credit with the airline to rebook as desired.
     
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  5. MX

    MX Gold Member

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    That's about $0.03 per MR point, which is good but not spectacular value. Also the customer would pay all taxes and fees, which can be substantial.
     
  6. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    You're paying taxes & fees anyways, and that's <$200 on the itinerary I identified.

    And while 3cpm is not the best ever it is still pretty darn good when you consider no limits on what flights are booked. I didn't hunt for instances where the numbers are even more favorable but I'm betting they exist.
     
  7. MX

    MX Gold Member

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    I think you may be looking at the number called "Additional Taxes & Fees" by United. All taxes & fees listed on Expedia for the same flight are over $1K. I'm afraid AmEx will exlude all taxes & fees from reimbursement.
    And we don't pay either one with airline awards.
    In any case, this doesn't make the AmEx deal unattractive, just changes the selection process for the best redemption.
     
  8. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Read the fine print.
    and
    Expedia has absolutely nothing to do with it.
     
    MX likes this.
  9. MX

    MX Gold Member

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    Ok, I'm sold. :)
    Any way to get the deal, if I'm not targeted?
     

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