Online shopping portal. How much is a point/mile worth?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by vickers, Sep 11, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    I do quite a bit of online shopping and I'm trying to figure out which portal to use based on the dollar amount of each point/mile. I've been researching for a while now but the information is all over the place.

    I know different portals give you different point values but I am just really trying to determine how much each mile/point is worth. Here are the the programs I belong to. Each has its own shopping portal with various merchants:

    United
    Delta
    Marriott
    Wells Fargo - Seems to be an easy 1 cent per point. A $25 gift card will usually run you 2,500 points.

    Wish SPG had a way to earn star points with a shopping portal...

    I'm also a member of bigcrumbs.com. Haven't used it yet but let's throw it in there too.

    Thank you for your thoughts.
     
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  2. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    It all depends on what you're gonna use them for. Y/J/F redemption? JW/Ritz? Then there's the question of just because a flight in J is $3000 is that money you would've spent on it or would you have bought the Y for $1200. Guess I'm just saying .... there isnt a real/concise "value." A few bloggers have put monteary cent values on them, but those are their values & are probably not yours.

    Out of the four ... UA > Delta > WF > Marriot would be my rank.

    Here are some links to get your started.
    http://boardingarea.com/frequentmiler/fair-trading-prices/
    http://milevalue.com/mile-value-leaderboard/
    http://boardingarea.com/onemileatatime/2013/03/11/what-miles-points-are-worth-introduction/
     
  3. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    Thank you. When I fly, not looking for first class, or international. Just coach and within the United States. For hotels, I usually stay in a category 1-4. Im not fancy. lol. I just want to get the most bang for my buck.

    I see what you are saying...... Not a simple "This point is worth this many cents". I appreciate your take, and thank you for the links.
     
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  4. danny
    Original Member

    danny Silver Member

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    I think you just described one of the lowest value redemption options for the miles in coach and domestic.

    If you can't figure out what value you're personally getting from the miles stick to BigCrumbs and get the cashback.
     
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  5. miles and smiles
    Original Member

    miles and smiles Gold Member

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    If you do a lot of shopping online, you should know about these portals:
    http://evreward.com/
    http://www.cashbackholic.com/
    Neither of these is comprehensive, but they are a good start.
    In my humble opinion the value of a point/mile varies enormously depending on the individual or the situation. For me the true value has very little to do with how many pennies someone says a mile/point is or is not worth. The real value comes from my own appreciation of a free/cheap flight or hotel room. If it its valuable to me, then what someone else says/thinks makes no difference to me.
     
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  6. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    Thank you for putting things into perspective. I appreciate it, and the links. evreward.com gives a great snapshot.
     
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  7. servo

    servo Silver Member

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    Are you flying out of HSV to go everywhere you travel, or do you fly out of BNA or BHM, or even ATL also? If domestic coach redemptions are your primary reward, I would highly suggest looking into Southwest/Airtran's program. Domestic coach awards with Southwest are guaranteed to be a value of at least 1.68 cents per mile, which likely blows Delta and United away, plus there's no worry about availability, because Southwest's points awards aren't capacity controlled (the old "standard awards" are, but it's never been a problem for me to get non-stop award flights even with the old program).

    I'm not a huge fan of the airline itself, but the route availability for domestic locations I travel frequently (SDF to visit family 4-5 times a year) is unbeatable for the point value I get in redemption. The Companion Pass would make your point redemptions worth double, because the companion flies for free once you earn it - and if you searched blogs for companion pass, you can learn how to get it with 2 credit card signups! I honestly believe that would be your best bet for earning cheap domestic travel, even though you'd have to drive 2-ish hours to get to an airport that they serve.

    They typically offer pretty good point value deals on their shopping portal as well.
     
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  8. vickers

    vickers Gold Member

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    Thanks. I have flown out of BNA once or twice, but after a week long business trip, the last thing i want to do is get off the plane and drive 2 hours home. lol. When I fly out, i normally fly early on Monday (5 or 6 am). Really wouldn't want to get up 2 hours earlier. I know I could stay the night before, but I have 2 small kids who dont like when I travel. Wouldn't want to add an extra night away from home. And I dont think the Mrs. would like that too much. ;)

    But really appreciate the perspective and info about southwest. I didnt know before how their benefits stacked up.
     

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