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View Full Version : Update, talked to Airmiles about buying points, & opinions on my strategy pls


coastgirl
07-26-2006, 12:07 PM
...So I posted below about Airmiles and buying points to make up tickets. With the mosaic mc I can get to Orlando for 1400 pts per ticket. I have about 2600. The website says you can purchase up to 50%. So, if I can accumulate another 200 then I can buy another 2800...and have 4 tickets! That would be about $800 for the extra miles, plus whatever fees, taxes etc. Still cheaper than getting two tickets on miles and buying two (about $1500 at this point, with no particular discounts). I asked the phone agent, and she said absolutely I could do that once I have at least 2800. Seems like a deal, though not a huge one. But seeing as we're going in Jan/Feb it'd be nice to have to get only as far as Halifax (about 70 mins) rather than driving to New Hampshire or something. The agent also said we should book soon, as Jan is getting full already, and Westjet is very popular.

Still not entirely willing to give up on a seat sale of some sort, or an amazing ding, or whatever. I don't love the idea of the winter drive, but my dh needs a periodic road trip!

OTOH, I want to book hotel so I can make an ADR for CRT, and I really hate trip planning without having settled something as key as transportation!

So. Here's my strategy--what do you think?

Work like crazy to get those 200 AMs as fast possible.

At that point try to book 4 AMs tickets.

If they're not available, we'll wait for a ding or other seat-sale.

???

JoAnne in NS

Palendat
07-26-2006, 12:26 PM
It may be cheaper to purchase the tickets directly through Westjet. We recently booked, and were charged about $135 per ticket in taxes. If you could book Westjet for around $500, you might be better off. Mind you, the taxes were from Winnipeg, which has an extra leg to the journey, so my numbers might be off!

coastgirl
07-26-2006, 12:34 PM
It may be cheaper to purchase the tickets directly through Westjet. We recently booked, and were charged about $135 per ticket in taxes. If you could book Westjet for around $500, you might be better off. Mind you, the taxes were from Winnipeg, which has an extra leg to the journey, so my numbers might be off!

Yes, you're right, I do have to do the math, and a bit more research on the likelihood of a seat sale. Plus the points ticket insurance is something like $60 a ticket and doesn't cover "oops we changed our mind".

Trying to get a sense of how much extra the tickets from US gateways would cost in taxes and fees also. A $49 ding looks pretty good, but is it going to be another $200 in taxes and fees like it would be on AC??

tophee99
07-26-2006, 03:40 PM
The taxes when flying out of the US are much more reasonable.......way, way , way less than the 250% that we are charged in Canada. You can go on one of the sites and purchase tickets (or pretend to) and it will tell you exactly how much it is.

Good Luck

tmli
07-26-2006, 03:55 PM
On a $49 ticket you wouldn't pay more than $15 in taxes/fees (based on what I pay out of buffalo)

Lizziejane
07-26-2006, 11:36 PM
How much do you have to charge to your card to make up the 200 airmiles? Someone told me it was 1 air mile for every $15 put on the card - that's $3,000! But I don't have a mosaic card, so I could be way off there!

Once you get those 200 additional miles, then I think you said you have to pay about $800 for the purchase of the 2800 additional miles, plus about $135 per person in taxes. Excluding the $3000 to get your miles up to the required level, you're looking at about $800 + $540 = $1340.

Westjet out of Halifax in January/Feb is about $700 per person. You'd be paying $1400 total for 2 tix, plus $270 taxes for the 2 air miles tix, plus about $60 to buy the 200 miles that you're short = total of $1730.

It seems purchasing the airmiles would result in a $400 savings. How quickly can you earn those extra 200 miles!?!?!

coastgirl
07-27-2006, 06:29 AM
How much do you have to charge to your card to make up the 200 airmiles? Someone told me it was 1 air mile for every $15 put on the card - that's $3,000! But I don't have a mosaic card, so I could be way off there!

It seems purchasing the airmiles would result in a $400 savings. How quickly can you earn those extra 200 miles!?!?!

Wow, thanks for doing the math for me! I had a ballpark in my head, but that's much more precise! :thanks:

As for charging, well, I think it is $15 per mile, but I am also going crazy finding other ways...managed 22 on my trip to Sobey's on Monday, by buying stuff I would've bought anyway. We also put everything we can through the card, from $5 up.

Ds is hovering and wants to see this icon. :hourglass Ok, so time's passing til our next trip!

Thanks again for the analysis!

explorer1977
07-27-2006, 12:38 PM
Racking up airmiles is not that hard and to get 200 should be pretty easy. We bring in alot in a month or at least try too, through a credit card (amex), gas at shell, the LCBO, and the best one grocery shopping. We shop for the bonus airmiles and the record we have made in one shopping trip is 298 airmiles for about spending $140 on groceries. The trick with the bonus airmiles it to find the best bonus for the lowest cost. The two that have been the best in the past were frozen juice (buy 3 at 89 cents each and get 20 bonus airmiles) and spice marinade (buy 3 at just around a buck each and get 20 bonus airmiles). There is usaully good bonus deals through major brand such as Kraft or Lipton or cleaning products. We have not been trying to get many lately but have to try soon as the mosiac card looks like a great deal for booking and I'm thinking about getting one very soon cause an pre approved application just came in the mail with a 300 bonus airmiles perk.

coastgirl
07-27-2006, 06:07 PM
We shop for the bonus airmiles and the record we have made in one shopping trip is 298 airmiles for about spending $140 on groceries. .

Whoa. You're my hero, Michael. :thumbsup2 We once made about 200 in one trip to Lawton's (drug chain in Atlantic) and I was pretty proud of myself...298 is amazing.

cab0899
07-27-2006, 06:48 PM
We had a Safeway in Winnipeg that for a few months had a deal spend $200 get 600 airmiles or spend $100 and get 400 airmiles. By the time you used your Airmiles Mastercard and a few special promos like buy 2 salad dressings and get 15 airmiles, you could leave Safeway with 700 airmiles easily. That's half a ticket to Orlando! The Winnipeg Free Press frequently has Safeway airmiles coupons, usually $200 250 airmiles or $100 100 airmiles. It takes me about a year and half to get enough airmiles for 4 flights and 4 5 day passes and that's basically just from Safeway and Mastercard. It's a great deal!! Kim

coastgirl
07-28-2006, 06:29 AM
We had a Safeway in Winnipeg that for a few months had a deal spend $200 get 600 airmiles or spend $100 and get 400 airmiles. By the time you used your Airmiles Mastercard and a few special promos like buy 2 salad dressings and get 15 airmiles, you could leave Safeway with 700 airmiles easily. That's half a ticket to Orlando! The Winnipeg Free Press frequently has Safeway airmiles coupons, usually $200 250 airmiles or $100 100 airmiles. It takes me about a year and half to get enough airmiles for 4 flights and 4 5 day passes and that's basically just from Safeway and Mastercard. It's a great deal!! Kim

I do remember seeing Safeway deals when we lived in BC, but we were still collecting Aeroplan pts then. Wow. My dh works for Sobey's, the airmiles grocery affiliate out here, so I guess I can't complain (and most of my miles do come from there), but we never get deals like that...!

calgarygary
07-28-2006, 08:33 AM
A couple of years ago, Safeway was running a number of specials on school treats combined with bonus airmiles. Got 750 miles that shopping trip. We usually average at least 2 free trips a year.

explorer1977
07-28-2006, 12:05 PM
I have to move out west to get those huge bonus airmiles (i'm a bit jealous). No bonuses that big here in Ontario that I know of but if there was I would get them for sure.

DutchsMommy
07-28-2006, 02:35 PM
My biggest airmiles winner is having my son's daycare charged to my airmiles MC. I have the westjet gold 1mile/every $15 card so I get about 300 airmiles per month on Mastercard spending alone. As long as you pay off the credit card I find this is a good strategy. :thumbsup2

mbb
07-29-2006, 10:19 AM
.....a bit more research on the likelihood of a seat sale. ....


I'm still holding out hope for better schedules (ie, direct flights!!) and a *little* seat sale for YHZ pre-clearance :goodvibes :goodvibes :goodvibes

I hope, I hope, I hope!!!

:sunny:

matsterrocks
08-07-2006, 10:08 PM
I thought you could only buy 50% of airmiles needed for one ticket???

robsawatsky
08-07-2006, 11:41 PM
You can buy up to 50% of the "reward value". Doesn't limit it to just one ticket.

almacdonald
08-08-2006, 01:51 PM
Unless you're planning on going in January or February 2012 I wouldn't count on getting an airmiles flight now (See my earlier thread entitled "Airmiles wins again"!)

Although it probably doesn't matter cause you won't be able to get a flight anyway, buying airmiles isn't that great of a strategy. As previous posters have mentioned, you pay quite a bit for the airmiles but when you cash them in, the flight isn't quite free; you still have to pay taxes and fees and surcharges and AIFs.

If you plan on flying Westjet, book your ticket ASAP. If a seat sale does come up you can change for a small fee (I think about $30/person). We booked our tickets about 5 months in advance and watched the price go up close to $800 for 2 people.

Airmiles is a huge stinker in my opinion. Hopefully you can have better luck with them than I did. Try booking 1 flight if that's all you have enough points for right now. If you're lucky 1 "free" flight is still better than nothing, right?