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Best use of points?

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motlking

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Sep 30, 2011
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Hey guys,

I know this has probably been asked before but I couldn't find an answer.

I have a Citibank Visa Signiture with citibank points. What is the best dollar use of these points? Gift cards? Flights (which airline)? The only frequent flyer program I am with at the moment is Qantas.


Thanks!
 

knasty

Active Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2010
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General consensus is business/first class flights on Singapore Airlines is best via transfer to Krisflyer. Otherwise Velocity. Gift cards are a long way down the list.
 

zainman

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Jan 31, 2012
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as already mentioned. Best use is flights by transferring points to Velocity or Krisflyer.
 

motlking

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Sep 30, 2011
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Thanks guys! Now to decide whether to start racking up Velocity or Krisflyer points hmmm....
 

albyd

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Apr 7, 2011
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You don't need to make a decision on which program straight away as you can warehouse your points in the citi rewards program until you're ready to transfer to your chosen FF program. Best of both worlds while you rack up those points!
 

b_adger

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May 8, 2013
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General consensus is business/first class flights on Singapore Airlines is best via transfer to Krisflyer. Otherwise Velocity. Gift cards are a long way down the list.
I wouldn't be so quick to knock gift cards.
Getting gift cards direct from citi works out at about 0.82 c return per $ spent, but often they have promotions - I got some prepaid visa cards at 1c/$. Whereas for virgin flights I've done some quick calculations and get values from 0.68 to 1.2 c/$ depending on where you fly. Of course if you send your points to virgin when they have 10 or 15% bonus points that improves the return.

You should also take into account the lost opportunity cost of the value of the points. If you redeem the points for gift cards and spend them now, you don't have to spend that money from your own pocket, it stays in your mortgage and you "earn" 5% on it. If your points sit in your account for 1 year waiting until you have enough for a flight, the value of those points is effectively less by 5%.
 

knasty

Active Member
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Mar 11, 2010
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910
Not knocking...just saying J/F typically better value. I have advised many a friend and colleague to stop redeeming points for Y flights (typically QFF for Jetstar) and buy cash fares instead, using gift cards to offset the cost.
 

R36snowbound

Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2011
Messages
134
As with everything in life, it all depends on what you have planned. For the last 12 months, I have used my Citibank points of gift vouchers.

My spend enables me to get a $250 gift card every 6-8 weeks or so, last 12 months, we have received 8 gift cards. So for $700 annual fee, we get $2,000 worth of gift cards, with a few bottles of wine at dinner at the local restaurant, not a bad ROI for some one with no travel plans and a mortgage.

But next year, me & the Mrs are planning a trip to Asia, so am saving points now for redemption with SQ. If I can book a saver reward with SQ in business, that same number of points will save us around $5,000 in air fares, an even better ROI.

I think the smart thing is not leave points building up for more than 12 months (unless you have a specific plan). Every year, points are de-valued through increased burn rates and credit card companies can change their systems at any time. I am not saying that they will not honour the points you have earned, but for example, Virgin Velocity our SQ Kris Flyer could cease to be a partner at any time.
 

cove

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Feb 15, 2008
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11,398
Yes Kris Flyer points for pointy end flights are brilliant on Saver points for longhauls. For economy runs the taxes are too high so do not go there.
 

dajop

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Yes Kris Flyer points for pointy end flights are brilliant on Saver points for longhauls. For economy runs the taxes are too high so do not go there.
Actually unlike another particular carrier which will remain unnamed because I want to keep this comment simple and fair, SQ often have good economy saver award availability even when cabins are running quite full and fares are very high. Obviously, not as good value as business savers, but if unable to find availability or have a scarcity of points economy can still be reasonable. Recently managed just over 1.5c per point in economy to US return from SIN (based on cheapest commercial fare ......on UA) or >2c per point based on SQ fare (business was full). The good thing is basically redemptions don't completely dry up once the commercial fares move beyond the "sale" level.
 
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