MR Purchase Points Question

Discussion in 'American Express | Membership Rewards' started by Steven Schwartz, May 18, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Steven Schwartz
    Original Member

    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    I know you can purchase AMEX MR points - in fact up to 500,000 per year. My question is can you purchase and bank them or do they have to immediately be transferred to an airline?

    Thanks.
     
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  2. marcwint55

    marcwint55 Gold Member

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    Unless there has been a very recent change, you have to use the points immediately when you purchase them.
     
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  3. cc1972

    cc1972 Silver Member

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    How much are they? Is that available only in the US?
     
  4. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    I'm curious, what were you thinking would be of value by purchasing AMEX MR points?
     
  5. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    Thought I could build up an account while I was still working to use later.......

    I have no desire to retire from my dental practice at this point but when the time comes, one hard part will be losing the points/miles I earn from dental supplies and labs - a fairly decent amount each year. Obviously, these last two weeks point up the folly of such an idea as programs have significantly devalued. Such changes used to be incremental but some have been enormous of late. Still - would be nice to have a travel IRA - no?!
     
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  6. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    It would be wonderful, but there's no way to do that apart from saving actual cash. Real IRAs invest their money to keep ahead of inflation (and ideally, to grow it at a much faster rate than inflation). There's no equivalent way to invest miles and points: they just sit there in the account and devalue over time. It's the travel equivalent of saving money by stuffing it under the mattress. Heck, by the time you're ready to retire loyalty programs may not even exist!

    Enjoy the points and miles now, and if you're earning far more than you can burn in a reasonable time, switch some of your spend to a cash-back card and then put that cash in an investment vehicle for later use. Otherwise you're likely to be sorry later.
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2013
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  7. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    @moongoddess has it right, concentrate on building your AMEX MR balance with your business as opposed to buying points outright, cash is probably better spent elsewhere on travel if/when you actually need to spend cash as awards are unavailable (or do not make sense).
     
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  8. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    And also - don't put off travel until you retire! Plenty of people discover that by that time, their health doesn't allow them to travel any more (and of course some unfortunate souls don't survive long enough to retire at all). Start traveling now, while you can. I know how hard it is to get away from a medical practice for any length of time, but even a week away can be quite enjoyable. That's enough time to explore a great city like London, Rome, or Tokyo in some depth.
     
  9. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    You're all right but not to worry! Trust me, we have NOT been putting off travel! My wife retired from teaching four years ago and it's been full blast since then. This winter, we will be away about one week each month with a 2+ week vacation to France and Berlin in May/June. This is the time we've been waiting and working for. And with well over 2 million points/miles still in the bank, the next few years are definitely handled. It's the redemptions that have gotten harder and harder. First Class on Air France, Swiss, and Lufthansa (among others) has been great but is likely not replicable.

    That said, some of my goals have, indeed, changed. I still love the mile chase but it does get harder and harder. And at age 65, traveling with two carry-ons, two suitcases and golf clubs can get old pretty quickly! Seriously thinking of a second home in southern Florida. The thought of going on vacation with only an iPad on the flight is very, very tempting! Still have my bucket list (Amalfi, Australia/New Zealand, South Africa and China/Japan) that we would tackle a year at a time.
     
  10. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    Glad to hear you've been hitting the road, Steven! :)

    You're right about the increased difficulty of redemptions, which is yet another reason not to stockpile too many miles. Who wants a huge pile of unusable miles?
     
  11. flynow

    flynow Silver Member

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    I travel when I can. By age 55 my wife and I seen all 50 States. I was in the Army travel to 5 continents .And now 35 Countries. A lot have been on miles over the last ten years. I'm not working now so I have a Bucket list to get to a total of 50 counties . In Dec my wife and I are flying to Aruba for one week on a frequent-flier tickets and staying on hotel points. ( 36 counties) I'm calling my Bucket list 5-5-5 . Meaning 50 states five continents 50 countries. That's my Bucket list for me and my wife.
     
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  12. satman40

    satman40 Gold Member

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    There is always Medical Conference somewhere, every business needs a few good CC's.

    After a while, you will just give the miles away, they can not all be used.

    Amazing what rewards work and savings can produce.
     

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