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With so many dirt cheap options, do you find yourself holding on to your miles?

With so many dirt cheap options, do you find yourself holding on to your miles?

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Old Nov 21, 18, 10:19 pm
  #1  
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With so many dirt cheap options, do you find yourself holding on to your miles?

With family of 5 I can't book every trip in business or first, so on shorter flights I used to look for specials in economy like the one Air France had last week - 14K miles to Paris.
Now, I find it cheaper to book full revenue flights in basic economy rather than wasting miles and paying fees. My wife just left on a girl trip to Denmark for $450 (almost last minute idea). We have spring break to Europe booked for $370. I know what you will say about basic economy, but with lifetime status and other perks I never had any problems. The way I look at is is 5x60K .. Thats 2.5 business class tix to Asia.
Feels weird to sit on tone of miles and pay for your travels. Keep them gas prices low
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Old Nov 23, 18, 8:27 am
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No, only very rarely. $370 is very cheap, though.

We booked some LAX to Europe tickets that were about $400, but we had vouchers. That's a good chunk of what a departure from LHR to LAX would cost in taxes, so we did it without hesitation and kept the points in the piggy bank. Other than those couple of flights, it's miles and more miles. The miles still come cheaper than the cash outlay. We don't have status, so we sit where we're seated. Our biggest concession to keeping the miles coffers full is to fly in coach when our family of 4 travels overseas. At 60K r/t pp in coach, vs. 120/180 in business, we would deplete the mileage banks in short order.
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Old Nov 24, 18, 4:18 pm
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I save my miles for Business Class tickets where I can get the most bang for my buck. I did use miles for one direction of the DSM-ORD overnight trip I took with my 4-year old granddaughter and found exactly ONE day acceptable flight where I could use them at the discounted (7,500 miles one way) rate, booking 2 months out for October. ("Acceptable" meant not the 6:30 AM flight, the last flight of the night, or one requiring a connection.)

Yeah, I'll stick with using them in Business Class on long-hauls.
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Old Nov 25, 18, 12:46 pm
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I ascribe a value to my miles and any booking needs to exceed that value. This is a variable amount as I also take into account miles foregone, status acquisition and some other factors.

My other main use is when plans are not firm so I need the ability to cancel or change.
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Old Nov 25, 18, 11:12 pm
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There's nothing strange about holding onto points and paying cash instead. Points are an alternate currency with I can purchase tickets. For each purchase I consider the cash cost, the points cost, and the exchange rate offered as the ratio between the two. For each points currency I hold I have a target exchange rate in mind. If the points value is well above that threshold, I'll almost always redeem points. If it's below, I'll almost never use points-- preferring to save them for better value later.
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Old Nov 26, 18, 1:50 am
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Well, with BA I don't purchase tickets with points straight up, because it's just not a great deal if you're flexible with dates, but sometimes it could come in useful for a last minute economy ticket. Other than that they have a 2-4-1 voucher for redemptions so that's what makes it good value, so I just keep my points for that. Upgrades are also good value I think, but availability is limited.
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Old Nov 26, 18, 9:37 am
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I just assess each situation independently based on what stashes of miles I have at hand.

Our summer 2019 family vacation (5 people) is a mix of awards and paid. All 3 alliances involved, 7 total airlines, 5 countries...just booked whatever made sense on each segment.
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Old Nov 28, 18, 10:12 pm
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Originally Posted by Athena53 View Post
I save my miles for Business Class tickets where I can get the most bang for my buck. I did use miles for one direction of the DSM-ORD overnight trip I took with my 4-year old granddaughter and found exactly ONE day acceptable flight where I could use them at the discounted (7,500 miles one way) rate, booking 2 months out for October. ("Acceptable" meant not the 6:30 AM flight, the last flight of the night, or one requiring a connection.)

Yeah, I'll stick with using them in Business Class on long-hauls.
Same here. I can't justify spending 60K miles plus $200 on a shirt trip to Europe when I can buy tickets for under $400
Now, when we fly to Japan this summer, thats a different ball game. Longer flight, worth spending extra miles on business. Plus I found use for my useless Lufthansa miles by spending them on intra-Japan flights on ANA.
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