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The last time I checked, I had hoarded a total of 112,000 unused travel points, worth somewhere between $750 to $1,000. Know someone like me? A point.me subscription might be a good gift for your traveler.
Point.me is a flight aggregator that works a lot like Google Flights or Kayak. But instead of searching for the best dollar deal, it lists the best points and miles deals for any given route. It considers point transfers, complete with instructions on transferring points and where to book your flight with points.
The catch is that point.me requires a subscription instead of taking a cut from your purchase. So before you get too excited, it’s worth exploring whether the $129/year price tag is worth it for you or a loved one.
Before we start, you should know that a 24-hour access starter pass is available for $5. So you can always test the system for yourself.
Who Is point.me Best For?
The most obvious contenders for a subscription are frequent travelers. Digital nomads, business travelers, and retirees all make the list. But there are a few more qualifications that someone should meet before signing up for an account.
1. Have accrued points for multiple airlines or programs.
If the person you’re shopping for only has points/miles for one airline, they are better off looking for flights directly on that airline’s website. So, if you’re shopping for a businesswoman who only books flights on Delta, this isn’t a subscription for her to get.
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2. Have less time than points.
The main problem point.me solves is the amount of time you would otherwise spend finding the best points deal on airfare. Every points and miles program has its rules, like blackout dates and points transfers. The subscription saves some head-scratching by letting you compare everything on one page. So if a person has points but not a lot of time to research the ins and outs of each program, this may be a good fit.
3. Care about maximizing points.
Some people care so much about maximizing points that several websites have become successful just by showing how you can squeeze value out of point transfers, elaborate flight bookings, and special promotions. But not everyone cares — most people don’t, which is why points exist in the first place. Airlines are pretty much betting that the majority of people will book seats worth less than the value of the points. If you or your traveler that you're considering point.me as a gift for falls in this camp, it might not be a worthwhile subscription.
In addition to these baseline qualifications, it’s worth asking how experienced the person is at booking with points. People who are new to the game might benefit from having an easy-to-use aggregator through the basic point.me subscription. They may even benefit from the $200 per passenger booking concierge service, where a point.me representative will book a flight for them.
Is a point.me Subscription Worth It?
At $129 when paid yearly (just $10.75 a month) or $12 on a monthly plan, the base subscription might be worth it for people who otherwise would not bother to maximize their points.
But for people who are adept at researching points program rules (or just don’t care that much about maximizing them), this money is better spent on any purchase that will earn you points, like at a restaurant with a credit card that earns 2x or 3x points per dollar. Plus, a quick Reddit search reveals that many frequent flyers use the free alternative AwardHacker.
All that being said, testing the service is still a good idea.
A one-day point.me pass is only $5, so if you’re curious about whether your points could be going further, it’s worth dedicating that small amount of money to book award travel. Keep in mind that there are up to $200 of additional charges for cancellations and redeposits, so you’ll want to be sure about your travel plans.
Featured photo courtesy of point.me