In an article on Bloomberg News, a representative of American Express said that even during the global pandemic, members with Membership Rewards points appear to be hoarding them for future travel. Anyone else raising their hand about not cashing in Membership Rewards? Because yeah, I’m right at the front of that line.
It’s only about once every three years that I’ll cash in my AMEX points for a massive redemption under normal circumstances. Even before 2020 went sideways, I was keeping my AMEX points because I was able to use my American Advantage and United MileagePlus points to get us to Japan and back. I can only imagine how many other cardholders weren’t transferring points because of travel instability in 2020 and 2021. There’s no need to transfer points now when you can make a last-minute booking if everything works out.
I was glad to see that many AMEX cardholders were smarter than the company anticipated. You could almost read the disappointment in this statement.
“They’re not choosing to redeem them for online retail, which they could,” Campbell said at a virtual conference Tuesday. “They’re just stocking up the points to travel.”
So people aren’t taking the bait and using the points to buy things, which is a horrible use for your points. Instead, cardholders are keeping their points, waiting for when they can use them for travel in the future.
Congratulations to everyone who is hoarding AMEX points instead of spending them to buy things on the AMEX mall or redeeming them for purchases on Amazon.com. Sure, partner airlines might increase the prices for flights when all of these points come back into the market, but I bet you’ll still get a better value than cashing them out at the rate AMEX offers.
h/t: Miles to Memories
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary