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I recently commissioned The Princeton Group to conduct a national survey to find out how much people know about and are using their miles, and the results were very interesting.
It turns out that 73% of Americans who have frequent flyer miles don’t know how many they have and 59% said they don’t know how these programs work.
The other interesting facts to come out of the survey were that only 67% of us collect reward miles and points at all, and of those, 27% of people admit that they have let some or all of them expire.
Perhaps the most surprising fact? That those in the 18-29 age bracket are actually the worst at keeping track of their miles – 80% of them admitted they don’t know how many they have! Come on Gen Y – you’re supposed to be the tech savvy ones! With so many apps and tools for tracking miles and points, this just doesn’t make sense.
What also doesn’t make sense is why so few people are keeping track of their points and miles when there are such good resources out there to do so easily. Miles and points are a form of currency. They are worth money. Sometimes they are worth a lot of money – depending on how you redeem them. The bottom line is that your points and miles are an asset and they are worth keeping track of.
Given these results, I’ve decided to host a reader contest and giveaway to make sure that no one’s miles go unused anymore.
Now that the sun is out and shining and we’re all starting to think about summer travel, I think it’s time we all did a little spring cleaning, starting with our miles. So I’m going to be giving away some premium memberships to both TripIt Pro and AwardWallet to readers who enter my contest as well as a 30-minute personal phone consultation with one of them to maximize their personal points strategy.
Airlines have gotten more aggressive lately about blocking tracking sites’ access to account information, so not all of these are able to actively track your points, but there are workarounds and it’s still good to have all your information in one place that’s easily accessible.
TripIt Pro Prizes: Give Me Your Best…And Your Worst
I have six free one-year trial memberships to TripIt Pro to give away. TripIt Pro includes features like: tracking all your frequent travel account information including balances and expiration dates, instant alerts about flight delays, cancellations and gate changes (often before airlines themselves even notify you), the ability to automatically share your travel plans with contacts and complimentary 1-year memberships to Hertz #1 Club Gold and Regus Gold.
I’ll be giving three of these away to the readers who submit their best stories about how they have kept track of their points and used them for a valuable redemption.
I’ll give the other three away to the readers who worst stories about letting their points or miles expire. We’ve all done it, and the first step to recovery is admitting failure.
All winners will be selected at random from those who submit a valid comment using their email address at the bottom of this post.
Meanwhile for those of you who don’t end up winning, you can still try out TripIt Pro with a free two-month trial subscription – just redeem it by May 31, 2013.
AwardWallet Plus Prizes: Share On Facebook
One of the services I use for tracking my points and miles balances is AwardWallet, which has a basic membership that tracks balances and travel plans, notifies you when your balances are set to expire and allows you to share your travel plans. They also have a premium membership called AwardWallet Plus that does all that in addition to displaying historical account balance changes, allows you to export award balances into spreadsheets and will display unlimited award expiration notices.
I am giving away unlimited six-month AwardWallet Plus memberships to new users and also some OneCards that allow you to customize all of your mileage accounts onto one physical card for your wallet.
To win these prizes and get the AwardWallet Plus sign-up codes, go to my Facebook page and share the photo of me using my AwardWallet account. We’ll give six-month memberships to AwardWallet Plus to new AwardWallet subscribers (you can’t have had an account in the past, free upgrades to 100 members who share the photo, and the 50 OneCard coupons to another 50 Facebook fans who share it as well.
It’s spring and we all have to get our houses in order, starting with our points, so these free memberships to some of the best miles-tracking services out there are my way of helping folks maximize their miles and not let them go to waste!