Dec 21

Tips on Redeeming Reward Points

Airplane2 If you don't have enough frequent-flyer or hotel-loyalty points for a flight, an upgrade, or a night in a hotel, it doesn’t mean your hard-earned points have to go to waste. Realsimple.com lists some great ideas for how to cash in on your not-quite-enough points. Here are their top three suggestions:

1. MileDonor.com Founded by Colorado Springs-based Frequent Flyer Services, this is a free, non-profit effort that facilitates the donation of miles, points, and awards for personal and charitable use worldwide. Here you’ll find 80 charities that accept point donations from 17 frequent-flyer and hotel-loyalty plans, as well as individuals desperately seeking donations.

2. Points.com - This site offers more than 3,600 exchange options at retail outlets including Old Navy, Saks Fifth Avenue, Amazon.com, Best Buy, and even some restaurants. For instance, you can trade 5,889 American Airlines miles for $25 at Starbucks. The service isn’t free (it costs US$10 per trade, or $30 per year) but you may find something you can use.

3. United Mileage Plus - You can redeem United miles for a bunch of stuff: dining certificates through Restaurant.com; newspaper subscriptions at one of over 50 newspapers; or music downloads from Sony Connect. Get 100 tracks for 10,000 miles…

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