Part 1 of 3: Assessing Your Points
- How you check your points varies depending on the precise points system you use. If you’re unsure where to look for your points, call a customer service representative and ask.
- For example, maybe you can spend your travel points at iTunes. You can cash in some points for an iTunes gift card for a family member this Christmas.
- You can usually click something that says “redeem for cash” and enter information regarding your bank or checking account. The travel points will then be changed to cash and transferred to your account.
- Some travel points system may require you to have a specific number of points before you can convert your points to cash.
- Third party trackers can show you what rewards and coupons you can use at the check out when doing online shopping. You can cut down on a lot of money using these systems, as you can use multiple different types of rewards points in addition to coupons.
- If you have more than one rewards points system, using a third party tracker could help you save quite a bit of money on holiday gifts.
Part 2 of 3: Choosing Material Items
- Big shopping days such as Cyber Monday may mean more stores than usual are accepting points. You will also save money due to major discounts in addition to using your points to pay for a portion of your gifts.
- It may be in your best interest to stock up on a lot of items when shopping online. Some stores offer free shipping if you spend a certain amount. If your travel points are already taking care of a chunk of the payment, see if any items you need are cheaper to simply purchase online. If spending an additional $10 will save you $40 on shipping fees, for example, it may be worth it to buy a small item you need as well.
- If you’re traveling this season, gift cards can be an easy gift as they’re easier to transport. Think about opting for gift cards as presents if you have a long way to go to see loved ones.
Buy jewelry and other accessories. Many jewelry stores, or stores that sell other fashionable accessories, may accept travel points if you’re shopping online. See if you can pay for, say, a watch or necklace with your travel points. If you want to buy someone a somewhat expensive accessory that’s slightly out of your price range, travel points can help.
- If you prefer to look at items prior to purchase, try cashing in your points and then spending the money at a store.
Be on the lookout for holiday sales. If you want to double up on your savings, keep your eyes open for holiday sales. You may be able to, say, pay for a chunk of an item with travel points and then get an additional 10% off on a sale day. If there are online retailers you use frequently, jot down when they’re having sales. Try to use your points these days to increase your overall savings.
Part 3 of 3: Spending in Other Ways
Buy someone plane tickets. Many travel rewards points systems allow you to transfer your points for free or discounted tickets. If someone does not need anymore physical items, try buying them tickets somewhere. The gift of a vacation may be much appreciated by a family member or friend.
- Make sure you have an idea of someone’s schedule before buying them tickets. You don’t want to buy them something they can’t use.
- If there’s a big family event coming up, try buying a family member plane tickets to that event. For example, get your sister who lives in Texas plane tickets for the family reunion in California this year.
Donate to a charity. Many travel rewards points have a system that allows you to transfer your points to a charity. Points are converted to cash and then donated. If someone does not want anything this year, consider using your points to donate to a charity in their name.
Pay for an experience. Many points systems can be used to buy passes to places like amusement parks, spas, concerts, and events. These types of gifts can be very much appreciated by someone who does not want anymore material goods. If you have a family member who lives near Orlando, for example, see if you can cash in your points to get them a day pass to Disney World.