Today we have a Reader Question about the options for a medium size amount of expiring Emirates Skywards miles for which the reader doesn’t have an immediate flight redemption use.
Readers are encouraged to send us questions, comments, or opinions by email, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. We’ll try to cover them here several times a week.
Sometimes people start collecting miles with one particular airline just because they have 1-2 flights and there is no other option to credit miles for these particular carriers with their main program and then one ends up with a loyalty account containing a small number of points but no immediate use option.
I received a message from a reader asking what he shall do with 42,000 Emirates Skywards miles that are about to expire. According to the reader he acquired these miles when he had a work assignment where Emirates was the best flight option and these 42k miles were collected with two First Class round trips.
Aside from this, he never used Emirates again and isn’t planning to either. The miles will expire in a few months.
What are his options?
- The most immediate thing that comes to mind is to either use the miles by booking a flight or an upgrade for himself or someone else, but he already ruled that out.
- Another choice would be to try and get a ticket to a sporting event through Skywards Exclusives or purchase a collector’s item through the portal.
- Use miles to book a hotel through Emirates Skywards Hotels
- Extend Emirates Skywards miles for a fee
Using the miles for a hotel night might be the best option in this case. 42,000 miles would give the reader the option to pick a hotel for ~ US$180/night. Better than nothing!
The best choice for the reader would be to use his Emirates miles to book a hotel room through the web portal that allows to redeem miles or even miles plus cash. Some hotel chains or properties still give elite status benefits even though the reservation is booked via a third party as in this case.
I have used small amounts of Emirates miles in the past for example for a First Class flight from Hong Kong to Bangkok. I believe it was 30,000 miles for the short 2:30h flight. Definitely a better value than a $180 hotel but then you’d have to go to HKG first and have an opportunity to redeem on that route.
Sometimes it’s best to just cut the losses and take the best opportunity available even if it means a slight loss of value. A free hotel room is still better than nothing and letting the miles expire.