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question about buying merchandise with FF miles

question about buying merchandise with FF miles

Old Jan 24, 16, 8:16 am
  #1  
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question about buying merchandise with FF miles

Has anybody here bought merchandise with frequent flier miles? I was feeling extravagant the other day and bought a designer purse with some of my UA miles. The order status has been "processing" ever since then, and they don't show any shipping/arrival estimate. Is that normal? Am I spoiled by Amazon.com to want a shipping estimate?
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Old Jan 24, 16, 9:52 am
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question about buying merchandise with FF miles

Buying things outside of flights with airline miles generally represents a terrible value. So you probably won't find many people that have done that around these parts
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Old Jan 24, 16, 10:14 am
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Originally Posted by jcwoman View Post
Has anybody here bought merchandise with frequent flier miles? I was feeling extravagant the other day and bought a designer purse with some of my UA miles. The order status has been "processing" ever since then, and they don't show any shipping/arrival estimate. Is that normal? Am I spoiled by Amazon.com to want a shipping estimate?
Waste.
Of.
Miles.

Having said that, you've done it. It's not uncommon for these orders to be slow. How long ago was "the other day"? If it's under a month, be patient.
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Old Jan 24, 16, 2:50 pm
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ive bought merchandise from ffp, with cash, that was a far better deal than with miles

a rimowa luggage was 800 eur vs 150,000 miles which is worth atleast twice that much if can be redeemed
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Old Jan 24, 16, 2:53 pm
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question about buying merchandise with FF miles

I did it once for a handbag when I closed my AMEX account and it haunts me to this day as the worst redemption ROI when I was newbie. I didn't have enough for a ticket at the time.

That said it took a bit of time for AMEX to confirm availability as they processed M-F and about two weeks to receive my item. Amazon has spoiled us.
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Old Jan 24, 16, 9:29 pm
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If you were never going to use the miles it's a good deal. But since you are a member of FT I'm guessing you would use them, so almost certainly a very poor redemption value. That said, I hope you enjoy the purse.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 7:03 am
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Well, it can take me about a year to use the miles for a flight, so... I thought it was a good deal. It's an expensive designer bag that I would never pony up $400+ retail for, and I got it for "free" (27,000 miles).

But yeah, Amazon has me spoiled with quick shipping and also notification of such! It now seems weird to have an order apparently go into la-la land and not know what's going on with it.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 7:14 am
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AA &BA &lh cancel miles in an inactive account after 18-24 months. does not a purchase of a something reset the time. i bought Barrons(newspaper) in one of my acts, and my account counter renewed. i got 26K miles on klm a month ago, and will probably not fly with them in the next 2 years.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 7:50 am
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I redeemed Emirates miles that were expiring for Heathrow rewards points last year, a yummy bottle of marmalade vodka, a couple of bottles of bailey's luxe, and some Jo Malone goodies were definitely worth it!
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Old Jan 25, 16, 12:09 pm
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Originally Posted by jcwoman View Post
Has anybody here bought merchandise with frequent flier miles? I was feeling extravagant the other day and bought a designer purse with some of my UA miles. The order status has been "processing" ever since then, and they don't show any shipping/arrival estimate. Is that normal? Am I spoiled by Amazon.com to want a shipping estimate?
I bought 8 Waterford crystal wine glasses w/ Diners Club points & a 32" television w/ Hilton points. I 'think' (it's been many years since I did this) that I received email updates but again I could be wrong (it certainly wasn't as big an update as Amazon gives). I also don't remember how long it took to arrive, but I vaguely remember it not being too long.

My TV died the day before the Hilton Christmas catalog arrived, I had a lot of Hilton points & back then they were really difficult to redeem for hotel stays, so I said what the heck. Saved myself several hundred $$ (back then 32" TVs were the norm pre large-screen HDTVs & were pricey).

I think it was similar w/ the Diners. Catalog came, I was building up my Waterford collection at the time & had a lot of Diners points but not as much cash.

I'm also thinking redemption values way back when aren't as bad as they are now.

Cheers.
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Old Jan 25, 16, 2:37 pm
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Originally Posted by slawecki View Post
i bought Barrons(newspaper) in one of my acts, and my account counter renewed. i got 26K miles on klm a month ago, and will probably not fly with them in the next 2 years.
Yes, in most programs that works.

Not all merchandise redemptions are awful. I've done them to reset an expiration date...my "merch" is usually a magazine subscription.

Speaking of that, there's often an Economist offer that actually yields pretty good value-per-mile compared to what a typical subscription would cost you in cash. I'm about due for a re-up...
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Old Apr 13, 16, 12:38 am
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I just bought myself two high end purses with my united miles. I was supposed to go on a trip this summer; however it got cancel. I'm not sure when I'll be using them so I decided to buy purses that I will never buy with my own money. I feel good about it. I can always accumulate more united miles via CCs.
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Old Apr 18, 16, 6:57 pm
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Originally Posted by jcwoman View Post
Well, it can take me about a year to use the miles for a flight, so... I thought it was a good deal. It's an expensive designer bag that I would never pony up $400+ retail for, and I got it for "free" (27,000 miles).

But yeah, Amazon has me spoiled with quick shipping and also notification of such! It now seems weird to have an order apparently go into la-la land and not know what's going on with it.
Bolding is mine. Just because a bag retails for $400 doesn't mean that it can't be had for much less is the question. Just like airline tickets you need to determine if it is a bag that never goes on sale and retail is pretty consistent or is offered by several retailers that if you follow you can easily snag the bag for much less.

While this isn't an exact match of circumstance I never knew that prestige/high end makeup ever went on sale. It wasn't till I started following several bloggers/youtubers that I realized you could get amazing discounts by following prestige cosmetics makers. I rarely buy makeup at full retail unless it is something I just have to have.
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Old Apr 19, 16, 1:56 am
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I hate using miles to buy stuff as it represents bad value as others have said. But sometimes you have to use them or lose them. I had 35000 etihad miles that were expiring, so I got a frying pan (as we were in need of a new one) and EUR250 in Amazon vouchers, which I put towards a Kitchenaid mixer for the missus.

IIRC the vouchers took about a week to arrive via email, and the pan about 2 weeks to be delivered.
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Old Apr 19, 16, 3:54 am
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I've converted tons of credit card points to $20 grocery store vouchers in the past (before I discovered FT).
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