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Selling Miles- how?

Selling Miles- how?

Old Jun 27, 10, 1:23 am
  #1  
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Selling Miles- how?

So let's say you have 10 Million miles. You want to convert them into actual cash. How would you go about it without violating any of the airlines T&C's?

Could you transfer these miles into another program where they would be redeemable for cash?

Could you transfer them into another program (like a hotel program) with less restrictions about barter and selling awards?

Could you use them to purchase resellable goods or services?

Even if you were going to take a big hit in the mile value, the devaluation.

This is a hypothetical, but the basic question is-- what's the path out of miles into cash, at any legal price, and then, can we find the best price?

One idea that came up for me-- let's say I own a company. I have employees. I fly them around. I have 10MM Amex Points. Can I use the Amex points to book my employees travel on reward tickets?

Now let's say I don't own the company, can I perform that service for the owner without selling him the tickets for business purposes?

You can see where it gets complex. The point is to NOT violate the T&C's, not to ANYTHING shady, but see even if at big loss what is a path back to cash.

Interesting........
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Old Jun 27, 10, 2:37 am
  #2  
mia
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American Express Membership Rewards (USA) terms and conditions are published here. Points may be redeemed for cash. Points may not be redeemed for employee business travel.

http://www.membershiprewards.com/cat...rmsSplash.aspx

You may redeem in increments of 20,000 points for $100 in cash. Payment of the cash will be made by a credit to your Card account. Credits will not be made to a Corporate Card account. Corporate CMs with only the Corporate Card enrolled in the program may not redeem for this reward. However, Business CMs are eligible to redeem for this reward.



The program is intended to be a service provided to an individual, not a company. A CM may redeem points for rewards for personal or business purposes as that CM may choose. It is therefore considered fraudulent and abusive for any individual or company to (i) direct or compel any Corporate CM, Business CM or other individual to redeem points for company use or (ii) to direct, compel, encourage or allow a Corporate CM or other individuals to use a single Corporate Card account for the purpose of accumulating points for company use.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 9:19 am
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
American Express Membership Rewards (USA) terms and conditions are ...

You may redeem in increments of 20,000 points for $100 in cash...
Half a cent per dollar spent. If that's what you want to do, and you'll spend the $20,000 minimum, you'd do better to get a cash-back card in the first place.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 10:52 am
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Originally Posted by Efrem View Post
Half a cent per dollar spent. If that's what you want to do, and you'll spend the $20,000 minimum, you'd do better to get a cash-back card in the first place.
Amtrak let's you buy gift cards which are almost as good as cash. 10,000 points for $100 GC. 1 cent/point.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 11:25 am
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Great ideas. How would I sell the Amtrak giftcards? If I had 10mm miles, then I'd convert to 1000 Amtrak $100 gift cards. Now how do I make those cash?

Any way to do this at a higher redemption value? I wish i could sell someone my first class tickets in an intelligent way that didn't violate t&c. That would boost my mile value from .5-1c per mile in Amex cash or Amtrak gift card to 5-15c per mile in international business/first class. Hmmm....

What if you bought out first class on a bunch of flights? Took every seat available with a combination of partner and anytime miles. Think they'd be willing to buy some of the seats back from you for revenue passengers? Crazy, I know. Let's get creative, let's get nuts!
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Old Jun 27, 10, 11:31 am
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Originally Posted by njarecki View Post

What if you bought out first class on a bunch of flights? Took every seat available with a combination of partner and anytime miles. Think they'd be willing to buy some of the seats back from you for revenue passengers? Crazy, I know. Let's get creative, let's get nuts!
right, airlines will for sure give out 100% of their F seats on miles
The only safe way to 'sell' miles is within the family where you can't get maximum value, but at least you are reasonably certain that airlines won't catch you. Selling anywhere else including ebay is not a good idea.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 12:26 pm
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Originally Posted by njarecki View Post

What if you bought out first class on a bunch of flights? Took every seat available with a combination of partner and anytime miles. Think they'd be willing to buy some of the seats back from you for revenue passengers? Crazy, I know. Let's get creative, let's get nuts!
This post is already there....crazy and nuts!
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Old Jun 27, 10, 1:31 pm
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Originally Posted by cfischer View Post
right, airlines will for sure give out 100% of their F seats on miles
If you're willing to pay the "rule-buster' rates I'm not so sure that they can stop you. I also doubt that they'd care too much as getting millions of miles off the books would be so bad.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 1:43 pm
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Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
If you're willing to pay the "rule-buster' rates I'm not so sure that they can stop you. I also doubt that they'd care too much as getting millions of miles off the books would be so bad.
I guess it depends on the airline, most airlines are pretty restrictive with their F products. Anyway, they would not buy anything back and the OP could have the entire F-cabin
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Old Jun 27, 10, 2:00 pm
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Get your miles to gift cards (paths vary) and then convert those to cash.

example:
higher status DL members can convert directly to gift cards at 1 mile= 1 cent. Sell thse to Plastic Jungle/Ebay/etc and your 10 million miles become $70,000+.

Horrible redemption value, I also think someone with that point wealth would have a corresponding net worth to not need to resort to such measures. Then again my pile of points has never topped 250k before redemption so relatively I am a potato sack peasant.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 2:01 pm
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Some airlines, like DL, have marketplaces where you can buy hard goods for around 1/3 cent/mile. You could then resell the stuff for half of list price on ebay, netting you 1/6 cent/mile. Of course, exchanging miles at that rate is probably a violation of the FT TOS.

You're way better off with a cash-back card.
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Old Jun 27, 10, 6:15 pm
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So, to sum up, you lose money on all the cash you convert to miles, but you make up for it in volume?

Sounds pretty "crazy and nuts" to me.

I wish i could sell someone my first class tickets in an intelligent way that didn't violate t&c.
Well, it might occur to you that it's not in the airline's interest to lose money via their frequent flyer program, and they write the rules AND print the currency (and control the redemption).
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Old Jun 27, 10, 8:46 pm
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A company I once worked for offered 50% of the cost of an economy ticket in cash if we used our FF miles for flights. I redeemed 25,000 points for a return YEG - IAH and put $1000 in my pocket.
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Old Jun 28, 10, 3:52 pm
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Selling miles is against the policy of almost all airlines, but bartering miles is not. I discussed this in my blog post here: http://boardingarea.com/blogs/unroad...trading-miles/. My suggestions would be to post on forums such as Coupon Connection here on FT and other similar forums to see who is willing to barter awards redeemed using miles by you for what they may be able to give to you in return. A round trip US-SIN in exchange for an iPhone 4 anyone?
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Old Jun 28, 10, 4:20 pm
  #15  
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Originally Posted by sharmaintl View Post
Selling miles is against the policy of almost all airlines, but bartering miles is not.
Yes it is.


At no time may AAdvantage mileage credit or award tickets be purchased, sold or bartered. Any such mileage or tickets are void if transferred for cash or other consideration. Violators (including any passenger who uses a purchased or bartered award ticket) may be liable for damages and litigation costs, including American Airlines attorneys fees incurred in enforcing this rule.

Use of award tickets that have been acquired by purchase or for any other consideration may result in the tickets being confiscated or the passenger being denied boarding. If a trip has been started, any continued travel will be at the passenger's expense on a full-fare basis. The passenger and member may also be liable to American Airlines for the cost of a full fare ticket for any segments flown on a sold or bartered ticket.


http://www.aa.com/i18n/AAdvantage/pr...Conditions.jsp
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