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What do you consider good redemption value?

What do you consider good redemption value?

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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:41 am
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What do you consider good redemption value?

With the current roster of partners and dynamic pricing, what does everyone consider to be a "good" redemption value for SkyMiles, especially if you have transferable points available. I feel like with other rewards programs I can easily get cash value of more than 2c per point, but maybe with Delta I should aim for more like 1.4?
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:43 am
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Originally Posted by whicuz View Post
With the current roster of partners and dynamic pricing, what does everyone consider to be a "good" redemption value for SkyMiles, especially if you have transferable points available. I feel like with other rewards programs I can easily get cash value of more than 2c per point, but maybe with Delta I should aim for more like 1.4?
With Delta, I'm OK with anything over 1.3 or 1.4 cents, although I aim for 2 cents or more if possible...
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:49 am
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Iím not nearly as successful as many here in maximizing the value of my miles. I usually donít have the luxury of being able to play around with dates, etc. I pull the trigger if the flights I need are available for 1.2 cents to the mile or better; otherwise I pay cash or use points (e.g. Chase UR).
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:59 am
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Originally Posted by acrophobia View Post
Iím not nearly as successful as many here in maximizing the value of my miles. I usually donít have the luxury of being able to play around with dates, etc. I pull the trigger if the flights I need are available for 1.2 cents to the mile or better; otherwise I pay cash or use points (e.g. Chase UR).
I'm the same way, although even finding 1.2 cpm can be tough if you're trying to go nonstop and flying desirable times.

I've started to look at mile's main utility as being the effectively refundable fares they provide (as a DM/PM). I may only get 1.1-1.2 cpm (and 1.1 really = 1 cpm because you get a 10% "discount" back in the form of miles when you pay cash), but it means I can make tentative plans and then cancel if things pick up with work or whatever it may be. That's worth at least a few additional factions of a cent to my cpm calculations.

That said, this may not apply if the OP is not at least a PM/DM.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:24 am
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Originally Posted by ethernal View Post
I've started to look at mile's main utility as being the effectively refundable fares they provide (as a DM/PM). I may only get 1.1-1.2 cpm (and 1.1 really = 1 cpm because you get a 10% "discount" back in the form of miles when you pay cash), but it means I can make tentative plans and then cancel if things pick up with work or whatever it may be. That's worth at least a few additional factions of a cent to my cpm calculations.

That said, this may not apply if the OP is not at least a PM/DM.
Same here, I am using miles to book flights that I may have to cancel, without too much regard for point value. I rarely do get less than 1.2 though. As the flight time approaches and I know I will take the flight I have sometimes look for cheap fares that make it worth canceling the rewards ticket and buying the cheap fare. Again, that only applies to PM/DM.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:29 am
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So to be honest I find I am easily able to beat the "good" redemption by using skymiles for domestic (U.S.) flights to "expensive" locations (i.e. non stops to remote airports etc.)

Though I would normally say if you can beat 1.2 cents per mile you are in a good spot. I have sometimes gotten up to 4 cents + a mile on the example above though (but that is rare and a true surprise)
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:33 am
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Originally Posted by vincentharris View Post
So to be honest I find I am easily able to beat the "good" redemption by using skymiles for domestic (U.S.) flights to "expensive" locations (i.e. non stops to remote airports etc.)

Though I would normally say if you can beat 1.2 cents per mile you are in a good spot. I have sometimes gotten up to 4 cents + a mile on the example above though (but that is rare and a true surprise)
I take really good redemption values like that and flip it on its head... "Wow, Delta is really screwing us on the regular fare price"
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:41 am
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Originally Posted by ethernal View Post
I take really good redemption values like that and flip it on its head... "Wow, Delta is really screwing us on the regular fare price"
I couldn't agree more, one example I have found is ATL-EYW. That flight is regularly $750+ in main but can easily have low mile redemption (if you look at the right time)

I get why its expensive because its a convenience thing of not having to drive to and from MIA but it gives me heart burn trying to pay cash on that flight
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:46 am
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IMO, there are some really good redemptions to be had with DL. For example, from PHX there are 5,500 mile O/W awards to Western Canada, 15,000 miles to rural Eastern Canada (part on Westjet), etc., and those are easily 2+ cents a mile. Some of the Europe sales are 2+ c/mile too. On the other hand, going to LA from PHX would set you back 9,000 miles or so O/W, which is about 1 c/mile. So, it is all a matter of looking for good redemption rates, and then jumping on them if they work for you.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:49 am
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I will often use SM for award tickets to hold the space in advance and then when I am certain of my travel plans I will switch to the PWM feature to ensure I get MQMs for the trip. The huge advantage of SM award tickets is the flexibility to cancel at no charge. The huge disadvantage is the fact that no MQMs are earned for travel on award tickets.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:56 am
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Originally Posted by sydneyracquelle View Post
I will often use SM for award tickets to hold the space in advance and then when I am certain of my travel plans I will switch to the PWM feature to ensure I get MQMs for the trip. The huge advantage of SM award tickets is the flexibility to cancel at no charge. The huge disadvantage is the fact that no MQMs are earned for travel on award tickets.
FYI though this feature is only available if you are a PM or DM
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Old Feb 15, 19, 9:02 am
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Alas, I don't have status on DL anymore, but I remember that when I did (even at Gold) last-minute award fares would show up at the lowest level on my favorite route - JFK-SLC. I don't know if that's still an un-advertised perk of status, but sadly doesn't apply to me!

I have MR points so I figure I can always transfer them to DL if there's a crazy deal, so maybe it's worth going through my Skymiles stash at anything > 1.4c.

Like many others here, I'm not flexible with dates or times, but I've often been able to get good deals with other carriers and transferrable points: e.g. I'm going to Japan tomorrow in JL F and back in DL suites, booked with AA and Virgin respectively (60k Virgin vs. 300k Delta miles...). That last datapoint makes me feel like Virgin miles will almost always book DL flights cheaper than Skymiles.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 10:44 am
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Originally Posted by sydneyracquelle View Post
The huge advantage of SM award tickets is the flexibility to cancel at no charge. The huge disadvantage is the fact that no MQMs are earned for travel on award tickets.
Thatís why I always pay cash for myself and spend my miles on my wife and son. Although in my case, itís MQDs that I need rather than MQM. I have substantial rollover banked so the latter arenít important to me.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 11:18 am
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Originally Posted by whicuz View Post
Alas, I don't have status on DL anymore, but I remember that when I did (even at Gold) last-minute award fares would show up at the lowest level on my favorite route - JFK-SLC. I don't know if that's still an un-advertised perk of status, but sadly doesn't apply to me!

I have MR points so I figure I can always transfer them to DL if there's a crazy deal, so maybe it's worth going through my Skymiles stash at anything > 1.4c.

Like many others here, I'm not flexible with dates or times, but I've often been able to get good deals with other carriers and transferrable points: e.g. I'm going to Japan tomorrow in JL F and back in DL suites, booked with AA and Virgin respectively (60k Virgin vs. 300k Delta miles...). That last datapoint makes me feel like Virgin miles will almost always book DL flights cheaper than Skymiles.
DL no longer has reduced rate awards for Medallions and they pretty much never have last-minute award deals. If you look at the fare rules on the cheapest levels, you will see they mostly have 21-day or 30-day advance purchase requirements for domestic flights and 90 days or more for international. There are also a number of award levels that require a round-trip purchase. If you are only looking at one-way awards, you are likely missing out on a number of options for awards where a roundtrip purchase is required and which are lower than purchasing as two one-way's.

Sometimes they have reduced levels with no notice. I'm currently seeing awards from hubs to LHR/AMS/CDG in Delta One for 128K roundtrip. Normally, the lowest level on DL metal is 172K RT. The 128K awards are roundtrip awards (can't be purchased as one-way's) with a Saturday night stay required and a 60-day advance purchase requirement. They are also seasonal --
VALID FOR TRAVEL COMMENCING ON/AFTER 30JUN 19 AND ON/ BEFORE 06SEP 19. ALL TRAVEL MUST BE COMPLETED BY MIDNIGHT ON 06SEP 19.
Fare code is CSVR640.

Last edited by LBJ; Feb 15, 19 at 11:29 am
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Old Feb 15, 19, 11:45 am
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Redemption value has been a big adjustment for me coming from AS; I was able to get CX J redemptions at 6.5 cpm in some cases. Granted, the alternative for me was buying a cheap coach fare instead of actually paying $3k+ for a one-way transpac J fare, but DL's redemption values have still paled in comparison given how high their international J rates are. My one DL award booking so far was a domestic F redemption at 1.5 cpm, and I don't expect to get much better than that.
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