Is it ever worth buying airline miles or points?

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bisbicos
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Is it ever worth buying airline miles or points?

Postby bisbicos » Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:00 pm

What is the purpose of buying points? Why would anyone do this?
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FastSRT8
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Postby FastSRT8 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 1:30 am

I would never do that. I'm guessing people buy points because they don't know any better or they need just a few more to get that free trip

Why anyone would pay for points that is handed out for free boggles my mind
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pac4toon
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Postby pac4toon » Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:37 am

Yup, that's just like buying airline miles.
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rockyrock
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Postby rockyrock » Thu Jun 27, 2013 6:00 am

Assuming the points are purchased at a discount: If someone was selling gift cards to a restaurant you liked for half off wouldn’t you jump on that opportunity? What is the difference with points; if you value the points at $0.02 and they are on sale for $0.01, its win-win. Same as buying a gift card--actually better since points are almost always transferable. If you have Starpoints, MR, or UR they all transfer 1:1 in most cases so having extra of them around can always come in handy to top-up another account if the need arises. I see no downside.
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FastSRT8
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Postby FastSRT8 » Thu Jun 27, 2013 9:56 am

Anyone selling MR points? I want to get to 2,000,000 just for fun :)
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swipe_masta
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Postby swipe_masta » Thu Jun 27, 2013 1:28 pm

rockyrock wrote:Assuming the points are purchased at a discount: If someone was selling gift cards to a restaurant you liked for half off wouldn’t you jump on that opportunity? What is the difference with points; if you value the points at $0.02 and they are on sale for $0.01, its win-win. Same as buying a gift card--actually better since points are almost always transferable. If you have Starpoints, MR, or UR they all transfer 1:1 in most cases so having extra of them around can always come in handy to top-up another account if the need arises. I see no downside.


+1 But I have yet to find anything that actually would want me to go this route.

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Z06Biker
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Postby Z06Biker » Thu Jun 27, 2013 1:48 pm

I think the underlying issue most people are having is: why not just spend what you would've spent on points on a purchase instead? That way, you get something out of it as well as hitting whatever point quota it is you were seeking.
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Jacksnow
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Postby Jacksnow » Thu Jun 27, 2013 3:17 pm

Because with bought points, It posts next to immediately so If I was planning a trip to X and I'm 100 points off. Amex is selling points 1000 for $50 it would make sense to pay the 50 and get my 1000 points book my trip and have fun.


That is the *only* use case I can think of that isn't silly.

MB131174
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Postby MB131174 » Sun Jun 30, 2013 8:49 pm

$50 for 1,000 points is not a good deal at all. You figure, those points are being bought for 5 cents a piece, while their redemption is going to be worth maybe, what, 1, 2 or 3 cents a piece? Maybe 4 if you're getting a super über great deal? I can understand if the trip is of urgent nature and you can't afford to pay out of pocket for the ticket, but can swing $50 to get the points needed. If it's a non-vital trip, I'd put it off until the points accumulated, or spent the money on items you need for your everyday life (or items you'd need for the trip) to gain the points.
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MB131174
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Postby MB131174 » Sun Jun 30, 2013 8:52 pm

Forgot to mention - any time a business sells something, they're going to sell it for a profit. (Unless it's a fire sale, and I don't think AmEx has had a fire and needs to clear out burnt and smoke damaged points to make room for new, non smoke damaged points.) Basically, for them to sell points, it's a way for them to make extra money off people who don't think things through.
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