Video: Should You Redeem Points or Pay Cash?

It’s the age-old question: should you redeem points or pay cash when you’re booking a flight or hotel? What are the factors that go into making this decision?

In this video, I share with you some of the guidelines and principles that I personally follow when making these decisions, allowing me to optimally allocate my budget of both cash and points in order to meet my travel needs.

On one hand, you need to consider whether a points redemption offers enough value, taking into account the fact that you get to earn additional points if you paid cash instead. On the other hand, points are deflationary by nature, so you always need to earn and burn!

Without further ado, you can watch the video below. (And watch to the end for some bonus footage from my first time flying a plane here in Dubai!)

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  1. Francis Gagnon

    And of course for HSBC points RBC points avion and AMEX its always good idea to wait promotion to boost the value for redemption… Krysflier and british avios is november ( too late for me…) I suppose its the same for amex and bonvoy….

  2. Fernand

    I think one big consideration, that isn’t mentioned here, is “will points allow me to go on this trip”. For example, if a trip is to cost 1500$ per person and that you cannot afford that amount to part with that money at that time, are you able to make the trip for 300$ cash ?

    As a newb, I travelled to Barcelona on what would be considered a “somewhat poor valuation” usage of points. I don’t regret it one bit. I’d do it differently now, with better knowledge and experience, but the trip was taken SPECIFICALLY because the usage of points limited my cash spend. Amazing city, amazing experiences, amazing trip that doesn’t happen if I hadn’t used points.

  3. Francis Gagnon

    Hey! Have a good trip! Yes thanks for the tip with HSBC world elite! Im a newbie in that quest for points and i have that card and waiting for my welcome bonus.

    So yes its always difficult to take décision. The HSBC world elite Will probably be a keeper for the power to manufacture points with cash. The process just to have this card its a nightmare.So i just dont want to churn it every year ( i dont have salary 80k so im lucky enough)

    Right now i consider to go Australia but without date so risk of devaluation is probably too high. I Will probably reconsider for now… I churn avios and Alaska air miles not Aéroplan for now… I like to diversify but with 130k of HSBC points 40k of avios inwill.probably go all in avios for europe…i dont see Much value enough for Asia for what i have now…

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