Credit card points and miles can go further with different airlines; how to get the best deals

Thursday, September 28, 2023
How to get the best deals for your credit card points, miles
You may be able to get better deals by 'translating' your credit card points through alternative airlines. One consultant even does the work for you.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Stephen Au's business, Au Points and Awards Consulting Services (AuPACS), books points and miles travel.

"We've increasingly had to resort to using clever techniques to try to book these flights with points," says Au.

Oh, and clever he is.

"He basically will play matchmaker, getting you there and getting you back for the least amount of points," says AuPACS client Joe Perillo.

Kevin Kent is a client, too.

"He's probably booked six or seven international flights for me, and they've all been perfect," Kent says, "and he's very good at what he does."

And what he does is find a great deal, then find a way for your points and miles to get that deal.

"Something that we've deployed recently, increasingly," Au says, "is to book business class flights to Europe operated on an airline like British Airways through another intermediate airline partner, such as Cathay Pacific."

Here's what that looks like so you can do it yourself.

You trade 61,000 Capital One points for 61,000 Cathay Pacific miles, which can then be used through the Oneworld Alliance to book a British Airways business class ticket.

Your cost? 61,000 points, which Au estimates to be worth $610. Taxes and fees are $300, for a total price of $910 for a ticket worth $4,000 or more.

AuPACS charges $200 a month, paid upfront for a year, so you need to rack up some miles to make it worth it. Here is another piece of advice: Au says points tend to be better than miles because there are more ways to move them around.

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

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