Personal Finance

How much is 1 airmile worth?

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  • Dec 18th, 2009 8:59 am
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Newbie
Apr 19, 2007
53 posts
east

How much is 1 airmile worth?

Has anybody ever tried to figured out how much 1 airmile is worth.

I am wondering if its worth changing credit cards a paying the $99.00 fee to collect more airmiles.

Are they worth .05cents .10cents?

Thanks
24 replies
Deal Expert
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Dec 11, 2005
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It depends on what you buy with it.

A BOGO movie ticket is worth $10, and costs 25 air miles, so if you spend it on that, then 1 air mile is worth 40 cents.
To be nobody but yourself - in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else - means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. -- E. E. Cummings
Deal Addict
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Mar 31, 2007
3593 posts
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BC
I made this maybe 8 months ago, but it's a general idea on redemptions.
Ignore the top heading $20 = 1 mile.

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Deal Addict
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Jul 8, 2009
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Edmonton
Good chart. So it seems one Air Mile is worth about 14 cents on average, give or take. Good rule of thumb to remember.
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Dec 12, 2006
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Barrys Bay
Yes but that $0.14 cents, can you on average $15( gold mastercard bmo ) -$40( silver mastercard bmo ) to get that one point. Dependant on promotions, or if you double dip can be cheaper.

I have looked at it this way, on the airmiles site if i need 700 points for an item:

divide item points * 0.15 = cost of item
so 700/0.15 = $105 item
Now to get that 700 points it cost me if i double dipped on my AM Card and Gold Mastercard = 700/2 = 350 AM
Now if used gold mastercard means $15 for each point so for 350 = 15 * 350 = $5220 spent to get item

Now that means 700 AM rewards cost me 5220 / 105 which mean my AM returns are 0.02 % of what i spend.

Now how good are the rewards for this return??????

So with chart above, to get $20 GC from shell on my double dip, would mean.

reward 175
I will double dip it
175/2
= 87.5
so 87.5 * $15 for rewards on gold card
= $1312.50 to get $20 or 0.015% or my spending

Yes i know you can get good rewards perks and coupons and 3x of 4x rewards or bonus miles, but this is just an example for people who just basically do AM's.
Deal Addict
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Mar 31, 2007
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Yea, generally the Air Miles credit cards are terrible unless there's some sort of promotion tacked on.

There's an Air Miles thread, I think in the freebies section, which outlines all the great deals at Safeway. Ie: I bought $30 worth of cereal once and received like 100 miles (promo) + whatever the standard rate is + X cashback using my SmartCash card. These are the typically things you want to aim for.

I've heard the best bang for your buck is on actual Flights though, never tried it myself.
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Deal Expert
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Dec 11, 2005
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RiCHC3 wrote:
Dec 15th, 2009 7:42 pm
Yea, generally the Air Miles credit cards are terrible unless there's some sort of promotion tacked on.
Again - it depends what you redeem them on. Redeeming airmiles for gift cards sucks - no two cents about it.

But redeem them for movie tickets or car washes or trips, and they are worth quite a bit.

If you go to the movies a lot then a 1/$20 Airmiles card is as good as 2% back. Try getting that elsewhere with no fee...
To be nobody but yourself - in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else - means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. -- E. E. Cummings
Deal Addict
Aug 21, 2009
1317 posts
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Saguenay
Now that means 700 AM rewards cost me 5220 / 105 which mean my AM returns are 0.02 % of what i spend.
Your math is right but you wrote it in the most confusing way. $350 = $5220??

You do mean 2% right? Which is more than you get from a cash back card except that elusive-no-longer-available 2% cash back card known as the RFD membership card
Sr. Member
Dec 20, 2006
517 posts
42 upvotes
brunes wrote:
Dec 15th, 2009 9:42 pm
Again - it depends what you redeem them on. Redeeming airmiles for gift cards sucks - no two cents about it.

But redeem them for movie tickets or car washes or trips, and they are worth quite a bit.

If you go to the movies a lot then a 1/$20 Airmiles card is as good as 2% back. Try getting that elsewhere with no fee...
If you have a Costco card you can buy the same movie ticket package there for $25... maybe not all Costco's have it though...

These are the movie tickets I am talking about
https://www.airmiles.ca/arrow/ProductTi ... =prod00179
Sr. Member
Nov 1, 2001
836 posts
27 upvotes
We use our airmiles for flights to Vancouver.

Normal price is $487 return.

Airmiles is 650 miles and $140 for taxes, etc.

So we use 650 miles and save $347.

$0.53 per AM

If we shop Safeway for the miles, it's not hard to spend $200 and end up with a flight, so it's a good deal that way.
Deal Addict
Aug 16, 2005
1840 posts
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I've been redeeming for shell car washes.

75 airmiles gets you a 2 free car wash package. You can have choice of which one you want. Their most expensive "ultimate plus" wash cost $11.99+tax = $13.55.

$13.55 x 2 = $27.10 / 75 = $0.36 per AM
[OP]
Newbie
Apr 19, 2007
53 posts
east
Thanks for the replies, lots of good information!! I guess it really does depend on what you use them for.
Sr. Member
Feb 3, 2005
846 posts
322 upvotes
when I worked at the shell head office, we paid Loyalty 0.08 when awarding an air mile and 0.08 upon redemption

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Member
Nov 14, 2007
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brunes wrote:
Dec 15th, 2009 9:42 pm
If you go to the movies a lot then a 1/$20 Airmiles card is as good as 2% back. Try getting that elsewhere with no fee...
Actually Brunes, most people use movie passes these days and the ones from AM go for around $25, (175 AMs) which equates to 0.14, this seems like the magic number
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