How to Actually Use Your Travel Reward Miles

How to Actually Use Your Travel Reward Miles

“I can’t use my miles to pay for the taxes.” “I can’t find any flights that I can use my reward miles on.” “I have all these miles collected and just cannot figure out the best way to use them.” Do any of these sound familiar? Collecting reward miles from airlines is a must for any frequent flier; or even those who travel occasionally as these reward programs are free and easy to use. But the main complaint is that these reward miles are just so hard to use and often come at a price higher than anticipated. Between blackout dates, excess fees and other restrictions the process of actually using your miles can seem to outweigh the benefits. Here are a few tricks that make using your reward miles a little easier and some tips on how to actually use them correctly.

Tip #1
Don’t spend hours whittling away on the Internet trying to find the best route to take. With the growing trend of everything going “self-serve” this is one instance you’ll want to go the old fashioned route. Get on the phone and call the airlines reward desk as they often have better suggestions for routes and alternative dates. One thing to note is that some reward programs are now charging for this service. To get around this make sure to get the information from the agents such as flight number, exact day and time of departure and then book it online yourself. That way you can avoid the service fee that comes along with the booking. If your ticket cannot be booked online the airline will often waive the booking fee.

phone call

Tip #2
Use your miles to upgrade into business class. Flying Blue is a great example to use when we talk about using your miles to go from economy to business or business to first class. KLM and AirFrance along with many of their partners allow passengers to upgrade with a certain number of miles. This takes away the hassle of trying to use the miles for flights and instead lets you have a much more pleasurable flying experience. Asia Miles with its 25 partner airlines also offers the chance to purchase companion tickets with your miles.

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