Travel Points & Miles Valuations – What Are They Worth? [July 2019]

Full Disclosure: We may be compensated when you click on links to credit card products from our advertising partners, such as American Express, Chase, Citi & Capital One. Opinions on this site are ours alone, and have not been reviewed or approved by the issuer. See our Advertiser Disclosure for more details. Thanks!

What are points and miles actually worth? Unfortunately, there are no official answers. In other words, the airlines and hotels don’t give out their own point and mile valuations. Therefore, it’s up to you to make your own conclusions on that value. However, we’re here to help.

There are many factors that come into play when determining this metric. Below are questions you should ask yourself when evaluating the value of points and what we’ve taken into account to create our point and mile valuations:

  • How valuable are these points?
  • How flexible are these points and how many transfer partners are there?
  • What are your redemption options?
  • How much would you buy points and miles for?
  • What’s the average redemption value from 3 different bookings?
  • How abundant is award availability?

Upgraded Points’ July 2019 Points & Miles Valuations

Flexible Points Programs

Flexible Point ProgramValue (cents/point)Value of 50k / 100k Points
Amex Membership Rewards Points2.1$1,050 / $2,100
Barclaycard Arrival Miles1.0$500 / $1,000
Chase Ultimate Rewards Points1.9$950 / $1,900
Citi ThankYou Points1.6$800 / $1,600
Diners Club Rewards Points2.0$1,000 / $2,000

Airline Loyalty Programs

Airline Loyalty ProgramValue (cents/point)Value of 50k / 100k Points
Air Canada Aeroplan Miles1.5$750 / $1,500
Air France Flying Blue Miles1.1$550 / $1,100
Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Miles2.0$1,000 / $2,000
American Airlines AAdvantage Miles1.4$700 / $1,400
All Nippon Airways (ANA) Mileage Club Miles1.4$700 / $1,400
Asiana Airlines Asiana Club Miles1.6$800 / $1,600
Avianca Airlines LifeMiles1.4$700 / $1,400
British Airways Executive Club Miles1.3$650 / $1,300
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles1.3$650 / $1,300
Delta Air Lines SkyMiles1.0$500 / $1,000
Emirates Skywards Miles1.1$550 / $1,100
Etihad Airways Etihad Guest Miles1.4$700 / $1,400
Frontier Airlines FRONTIER Miles1.1$550 / $1,100
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles0.9$450 / $900
JetBlue TrueBlue Miles1.25$625 / $1,250
Korean Air SKYPASS Miles1.6$800 / $1,600
Lufthansa Miles & More Miles1.3$650 / $1,300
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Miles1.35$675 / $1,350
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Points1.4$700 / $1,400
Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles Miles1.3$650 / $1,300
United Airlines MileagePlus Miles1.6$800 / $1,600
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club Miles1.5$750 / $1,500

Hotel Loyalty Programs

Hotel Loyalty ProgramValue (cents/point)Value of 50k / 100k Points
Choice Hotels Choice Privileges Points0.6$300 / $600
Radisson Hotels Radisson Rewards Points0.30$150 / $300
Hilton Hotels Hilton Honors Points0.4$200 / $400
Hyatt Hotels World of Hyatt Points1.6$800 / $1,600
IHG Hotels & Resorts IHG Rewards Club Points0.5$250 / $500
Marriott Hotels Marriott Bonvoy Points0.75$375 / $750
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts Wyndham Rewards Points0.9$450 / $900

UP’s Highest Valued Points

Not all miles and points are created equal, so naturally, each category has its own winner with the highest valued points. Here’s why we ranked the highest valued points why we did.

Transferrable Points: American Express Membership Rewards Points

Amex Membership Rewards continues to be the king of transferrable points. It has a variety of partners across all alliances (and many non-alliance partners), so it’s easier to find award space here than on any other transferrable points currency. Some of these transfer partners include Qantas, Air Canada Aeroplan, and Emirates.

Airline Miles: Alaska Airlines MileagePlan Miles

Alaska Airlines has the best of both worlds: a variety of partners and solid redemption rates. Some of its partners include American Airlines, Emirates, Japan Airlines, and more. Redemption rates are lower than other partners across the board—for example, a one-way business class flight on JAL from the US to Tokyo costs just 55,000 points.

Further, the airline just added Dublin-based Aer Lingus as a partner. This means that Alaska MileagePlan members can now earn and redeem miles on the airline, giving MileagePlan hoarders even more ways to fly to Europe.

Hotel Points: World of Hyatt Points

Hyatt has the most reasonable redemption rates of all the major hotel chains. Further, we’ve found that there are virtually zero blackout dates and that all hotels are on a standard award chart, so you’ll always pay the same price for a room at any hotel.

Movers

This month’s mover is Alaska Airlines MileagePlan. As noted earlier, the airline added Aer Lingus as a partner, giving MileagePlan members yet another way to redeem their points across the Atlantic.

Additionally, American Express Membership Rewards recently added Qantas as a transfer partner. This opens up great redemptions on Qantas partner El Al, making it easier than ever for Membership Rewards point holders to book direct flights to Israel.

Final Thoughts

While the value of points and miles can vary, you want to ensure that you’re getting a great value when redeeming those hard earned points. When it comes to flexible points, Amex Membership Rewards points is valued at the highest cent per point. These points are extremely flexible and Amex partners with a number of airlines and hotels, offer good transfer rates, and gives you a lot of fantastic redemption options. All of these elements ensure that you get the most of your points.

Andrew Kunesh

About Andrew Kunesh

Andrew was born and raised in the Chicago suburbs and now splits his time between Chicago and New York City. He’s a lifelong traveler and took his first solo trip to San Francisco at the age of 16. Since then, Andrew has traveled to over 25 countries in style with over 10 business class products under his belt. Some of his favorite business and first class products are on Lufthansa, SWISS, Hong Kong Airlines, JAL, and Qatar Airways. But don’t worry: he still takes the occasional Spirit and EasyJet flight when the price is right.

These travel secrets can be life-changing...

What if you & your family could explore more of the world than you ever thought possible - without blowing your savings?

Discover the real-life strategies that anyone can use to enjoy limitless travel (even on a limited budget!)

Just sign up below and we'll send you the Limitless Travel Playbook instantly:

We respect your privacy. Please view our privacy policy here.

Disclaimer: Any comments listed below are not from the bank advertiser, nor have they been reviewed or approved by them. No responsibility will be taken by the bank advertiser for these comments.

6 comments

  1. Nirendu Kumar ghosh · February 22, 2019 · Reply

    dear sir,
    I have lost my Emirates skywards number. i want to regain to get more points for benifits.
    please help me.
    Thanks.
    Nirendu kumar Ghosh

  2. Natalie · July 6, 2019 · Reply

    How much are Japan Airlines points worth? I would love to fly them in First Class.

  3. Jim Lovejoy · July 6, 2019 · Reply

    I really appreciate the work you’ve put into this. It shows the quality of your work that you got everything right except that you’ve undervalued Bonvoy points. Since 60k Bonvoy points can be exchanged for 25k airline miles on all the MR airline transfers plus about 25 others, then 60 Bonvoy points should be worth at least 25 MR points, especially as Bonvoy points transfer to high-value miles like Alaskan or Korean. The MR hotel transfers shouldn’t change the valuation as 1 Bonvoy point for Marriott is worth more than either 25/60 Choice points or 1.5*25/60 Hilton points to me.
    The only reason for valuing Bonvoy points at less than 2.1*25/60=0.875¢ is the fact that Bonvoy points sometimes take an unreasonably long time to transfer, and if that’s why you are devaluing Bonvoy points, I can’t disagree.

    • Hi Jim,

      Thank you for the feedback, we appreciate the kind words. The amount of time a point transfer can take is definitely a reason why Bonvoy points are valued less than Membership Reward points. Additionally, as you mentioned you have to transfer 60k Marriott points at a time in order to achieve a similar value that you get with Membership Reward points, this also causes Bonvoy to lose some value in our opinion as there are no such requirements with Membership Reward points.

      As you know, placing an evaluation on your points is very subjective and vary greatly depending on a large number of factors. So no method is perfect, and we encourage each of our readers to do their research and form their own opinions when deciding on to best value their points and miles.

      Thanks for reading!

Any thoughts or questions? Comment below!

Email needed if you'd like comment updates. It will NOT be published.

Advertiser Disclosure

Many of the credit card offers that appear on this site are from credit card companies from which we receive compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). This site does not include all credit card companies or all available credit card offers. For more information on our advertisers, see here.