How Much Is Each Point Worth?

Prince of Travel • September 2019


This page aims to provide a valuation of the major points currencies in Canada.

Valuing points currencies is a highly subjective exercise, and the value of a point in each program is constantly changing as the program itself changes. These valuations should therefore be treated as a general guideline, taking into account the general best-case usage of each program, rather than a definite representation of how much value you will get out of each point you earn.

Valuations for most programs are provided in Canadian dollars. For the programs with significant participation from US residents, I’ve included the value in US dollars as well.

Note: Care should be taken when comparing the values of points in two different program. For example, the value of 1 Air Mile is significantly higher than 1 Aeroplan mile, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that Air Miles is a stronger program. Instead, Air Miles simply uses a different denomination system, so while 1 Air Mile might be worth a lot more on paper, it’s also going to be a lot harder to earn 1 Air Mile compared to 1 Aeroplan mile.

I’ll be adding new valuations and updating existing ones as time goes by, so make sure to check back often.


Points Program Value Justification

Aeroplan
In-depth guide
2.2 cents/mile
1.6 cents/mile (USD)
Aeroplan is one of Canada's most versatile programs for long-haul international travel. Its advantageous stopover policies allow you to book some pretty amazing trips, like the Aeroplan Mini-RTW, that you'd never be able to pull off using cash.

Domestic redemptions will be harder to extract value from, but 1.5–2 cents/mile is still a reasonable target.

Air Miles (Cash Rewards)
In-depth guide
11.5 cents/mile Air Miles Cash Rewards are typically redeemed at a ratio of 95 Air Miles = $10, giving you a baseline value of 10.5 cents/mile. Occasional promotions allow Cash Rewards to be redeemed at a higher value, thus elevating our valuation slightly.

Air Miles (Dream Rewards)
In-depth guide
15 cents/mile If redeemed in the right circumstances (i.e., when the cash price of the corresponding flight is artificially high), Air Miles Dream Rewards can deliver very good value. Last-minute, short-haul domestic flights tend to work best.

Unfortunately, their value is limited to the above scenarios, and a lack of premium cabin redemptions is a major downside to the program.

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
In-depth guide
2.4 cents/mile
1.8 cents/mile (USD)
Alaska Mileage Plan features a wide array of unique airline partners, including some of the world's best premium cabins.

In addition, their redemption rates on said premium flights are among the lowest in the industry: one-way transpacific flights in business class or First Class can be booked at around 50,000 or 70,000 miles, respectively.

American Express (Canada) Membership Rewards
In-depth guide
2.4 cents/point Amex MR is by far the most flexible travel rewards currency in Canada. All things being equal, its optimal usage is probably through a 1:1 transfer to Aeroplan (2.2 cents/mile); however, its overall flexibility (including other airline and hotel partners, Amex Fixed Points Travel, etc.) boosts its valuation even further.

American Express (Canada) Membership Rewards Select
In-depth guide
1.5 cents/point Without the ability to transfer to airline partners, Amex MR Select is more limited in value compared to regular MR points.

Transferring to Marriott Bonvoy at a 1:1.2 ratio is a popular way to redeem, while Amex Fixed Points Travel can deliver even higher value if it's suitable to your travel needs.

Best Western Rewards
1.1 cents/point Best Western Rewards redemptions vary between 8,000–36,000 points per night, with the pricing generally reflecting the nightly cash rate.

Occasional promotions, together with the fact that Best Western often has hotels in places that other hotel chains lack coverage, allow you to get slightly higher value from the program.

BMO Rewards
0.7 cents/point BMO Rewards can be redeemed towards the cost of travel booked through BMO's in-house travel agency at a rather perplexing ratio of 140 points = $1, thus giving you 0.7 cents/point.

There aren't any other uses of BMO Rewards, which limits the potential upside. If anything, the fact that you must book through BMO, instead of using your points for any travel purchase, reduces the value of the program even further.

British Airways Avios
In-depth guide
1.6 cents/Avios
1.2 cents/Avios (USD)
With a unique distance-based award chart, British Airways Avios has a wide range of redemption sweet spots. Examples might include Toronto–Dublin on Aer Lingus or Seattle–Hawaii on Alaska Airlines.

Avios are also incredibly useful for short-haul side-trips on Oneworld partners while you're travelling internationally.

CIBC Aventura
1.2 cents/point CIBC Aventura points offer a baseline redemption option of offsetting the cost of travel booked through the CIBC in-house travel agency at 1 cent/point.

The fixed-value travel schedule, which allows you to get up to 2.2 cents/point on certain redemptions, gives the program some measure of upside.

Hilton Honors
In-depth guide
0.7 cents/point
0.5 cents/point (USD)
Hilton Honors does not publish an award chart, so each hotel's award price point can vary based on many factors. On balance, 0.7 cents/point is a reasonable target to aim for.

In general, award redemptions at both the very lowest and highest ends of the spectrum will give you the greatest chance of maximizing your value.

HSBC Rewards
0.7 cents/point HSBC Rewards points are worth 0.5 cents/point at a minimum, since you can use them to offset any travel purchase on your card at a ratio of 2 points = $1.

On top of that, the ability to transfer HSBC Rewards points to Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, or British Airways Avios gives the program some added value.

Marriott Bonvoy
In-depth guide
1 cent/point
0.7 cents/point (USD)
Marriott Bonvoy is one of the most useful hotel loyalty programs in Canada. The value in redeeming points for hotel nights is quite variable, as there are plenty of high-value and low-value opportunities. Overall, I'd say that 1 cent/point is a reasonable target to aim for.

Marriott Bonvoy points can also be transferred to 40+ airlines, giving it some added value in terms of flexibility as well.

RBC Avion
In-depth guide
1.7 cents/point Unique among the Big 5 banks in Canada, RBC Avion points can be transferred to a wide range of airline partners.

The general best-case usage is probably converting to British Airways Avios (1.6 cents/Avios) at a 1:1 ratio, but RBC Avion's value is boosted even further by their frequent conversion bonuses and the option to redeem via the RBC Travel Redemption Chart, which can deliver up to 2 cents/point in value.

Scotia Rewards
1 cent/point Nothing fancy here: Scotia Rewards can be used to offset the cost of travel purchases charged to your card at 1 cent/point. They're useful to collect for the purpose of reducing your out-of-pocket travel expenses, but not much more.

TD Rewards
0.5 cents/point TD Rewards can be redeemed at a value of 0.5 cents/point via the ExpediaforTD online portal towards flights, hotels, car rentals, vacations, etc. If you don't go through ExpediaforTD, the value is lower at 0.4 cents/point.

Similar to the other Big 5 banks' points (besides RBC Avion), their value is rather limited.

WestJet Rewards
$1.05/WestJet Dollar WestJet is unique in using "Dollars" as their rewards currency: 1 WestJet Dollar can be redeemed towards the cost of $1 off a WestJet flight.

However, you can get higher value through WestJet's Member Exclusive fares, which lifts our valuation of WestJet Dollars to slightly above par.