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One of the questions that we often receive is “how do you keep track of all your points?” Those of you that collect points and miles know that it can be a real pain keeping track of them, especially if you have points in several different programs. This can be an issue too if you have points or benefits that expire. In this post and video, I want to share a tool that I use to track my points and miles. It’s called AwardWallet, and I think it’s the best way to track points and miles.
What is AwardWallet?
AwardWallet has been around for many years. In fact, I’ve used their service since 2012 and I’ve always found it to be a useful way to keep track of my points. They have over 500,000 members, managing about 120 billion miles and points. AwardWallet even mentions on their About page that there are approximately 10 trillion unused frequent-flier points in circulation worth over $165 billion dollars. They also mention that 20% of these points are never redeemed. That’s not hard to believe this figure as I’ve lost track of points in the past only to discover that they expired.
At its core, AwardWallet is a platform that allows you to track all your points and miles in one place. Though the service is capable of doing so much more, and has the potential of being your one-stop portal for all your travel activities.
Tracking points on AwardWallet
Credit card points and benefits
If you look at the AwardWallet dashboard, you’ll see that I have my American Express Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards points tracked under credit cards. I noticed that if I expand my credit cards, like my American Express Gold Card (learn more about American Express), I can see additional details like my recent transactions and the bonus points earned.
AwardWallet even tracks my monthly dining and airline fee credit for my Amex Gold card, showing me when they expire. It also tracks my Chase Sapphire Reserve annual $300 travel credit. There’s even a warning for the annual night certificates that I earn from my Chase IHG Rewards Club and World of Hyatt card.
Airline, hotel, and other loyalty points
I’m also using AwardWallet to track airline, hotel, and other rewards program. AwardWallet is able to track practically every points program available. As of February 2019, the service is able to track 670 programs. They’ve got all the normal travel programs covered, as well as shopping, dining, and even surveys. If you have elite status with a specific program, AwardWallet will even show you how you’re progressing toward earning or maintaining your status.
Other AwardWallet features
Quick login into travel accounts
You can use AwardWallet to directly log into your tracked accounts. For example, if I want to log into my Hilton account, I can click on my Hilton account in AwardWallet. AwardWallet automatically opens a new tab and logs me into the account. While I keep all my usernames and passwords organized in a password manager, this makes the process of signing into accounts even easier.
Generating your travel itinerary
Another feature that I like is the ability to display your travel itinerary. You can either send AwardWallet confirmations from your trips or link your email. Linking your email address allows the system to scan your emails for potential confirmations. If anything changes in your itinerary, AwardWallet will notify you. Travel itineraries can also be shared with others through a direct link.
AwardWallet has a mobile app for both iOS and Android. Like the website interface, it lets you log into your travel accounts with only a single tap. The app has integrations with Google Maps and the ability to show your flight status. It even lets you see alternative flights in the event that you need to rebook. While you may not ever imagine needing these tools, they can come in handy if you’re stuck in a situation where your flight is canceled, especially at the last minute.
How much does AwardWallet cost?
AwardWallet is a free service, but they also offer a premium option called AwardWallet Plus. It costs $30 for an entire year and adds some useful features. You’ll get more details on your reward accounts, reporting, historical transactions, and many other data-driven features. It also allows you to update your accounts an unlimited amount of times. Free users can only update twice in a 24-hour period.
Though I think the most compelling feature of AwardWallet Plus is the ability to display the expiration dates for all your accounts. With the free version, you can only pick to track the expiration on three accounts. In my opinion, this feature alone is well worth the cost of the Plus subscription.
Is there anything that I dislike about the service?
The only thing that I don’t like is that AwardWallet will tell you how you can earn additional points, especially when it comes to credit cards. While I’m not opposed to this advice, I don’t think that it fully accounts for both the earning and redemption value. For example, for my Chase Freedom Unlimited, it says that I could be earning 2X instead of 1.5X using a different card. While that’s true, I’m actually earning closer to 2.25X since I can redeem Ultimate Rewards points at a minimum 1.5 cents since I have the Chase Sapphire Reserve card.
Calculating a card’s point value is complicated. I’d hate for people to be confused or led astray because the system only accounts for earning value and not the redemption value too. This is a confusing concept, so I’m planning to do a post and video on it soon.
What about data security?
Some of you might have concerns about having so much of your login data connected and stored at AwardWallet. I can understand your concern, especially after all the recent accounts breaches, including at one of the major credit bureaus. AwardWallet does outline how they are protecting your data. They not only use industry-standard encryption but also participate in a bounty bug hunt. This is a program where they pay hackers to try and break into the site in order to constantly improve security. I mention this because I know a lot of companies that are not proactive about their security measures. AwardWallet appears to be taking data security seriously. I also appreciate that they offer two-factor authentication on all accounts, not just their Plus accounts.
Additional tips and considerations
As you can tell, I’m a fan of AwardWallet. Though I want to share some additional tips to keep in mind if you decide to use the service.
1. Some travel accounts cannot be automatically linked:
When you use the service, you may notice that a few travel accounts cannot be accessed or updated by AwardWallet. This has been an issue for as long as I can remember. However, it’s not AwardWallet’s fault. Travel companies like Southwest and United do not allow AwardWallet to pull data from their website.
AwardWallet does have a few solutions to address this issue. You can simply link your email to AwardWallet, allowing the system to periodically scan for travel confirmations and updates. You can forward any newsletter or updates from these companies to your AwardWallet email to update your account. Or you can even add your AwardWallet email as one of your addresses on these sites so that AwardWallet automatically receives your balance update whenever the airline or hotel sends out a statement or newsletter.
2. Set-up notifications:
One of the first things you should do when you use AwardWallet is to set-up
Not only do these notifications help you to stay organized, but they also alert you to any theft of points. Points theft is a real thing on many hotel and airline websites. Many of these hotel and airline sites are often targets of attack, and people have reported their accounts being hacked and their points
3. Set-up two-factor authentication:
AwardWallet offer two-factor authentication on both their free and Plus accounts and you should activate it immediately. This is a best practice and worth the effort to keep your account safe and secure.
4. Add connected users:
You can add other family members to your account, or even their accounts to your dashboard. AwardWallet allows you to share your individual account balances once your profiles are linked. Sharing accounts makes it easier when trying to book trips with others in your household. For example, when Fiona and I book trips, we often need to see both of our points totals. This helps us to determine who should book the trip and whether we need to move points around. AwardWallet streamlines the entire process!
5. Request additional services:
With over half a million members, you can imagine that there are a lot of award programs that people would like integrated into AwardWallet. I was impressed that AwardWallet gives users the ability to suggest and vote on points programs to integrate into their system. I love that they are driving development based on the feedback and needs of their user community.
6. Get a AwardWallet OneCard:
AwardWallet offers a product called OneCard where they print all your reward account numbers on a plastic card for only $10. I personally haven’t ordered one, but I can see how it could be useful and handy. This is a great product, especially if you’re “old-school” and worried about relying on information stored on
Win an AwardWallet Plus upgrade!
AwardWallet has generously offered to give away 30 Plus upgrade codes to our readers and viewers. Entering our giveaway is simple! All you need to do is fill in the form below or visit our giveaway page. You don’t have to purchase anything and there are multiple ways to enter and gain entries.
By signing up for our social media channels, you’ll not only earn an extra entry into the contest, but you’ll also get content that we share outside of YouTube and our website. All you have to do is click on any or all of the options to enter. The more options you complete, the more entries that you’ll earn. And of course, there’s no pressure to enter! The contest runs until Friday, February 15, 2019. We’ll randomly select 30 winners on February 16, 2019, then email the codes to the winners. Also, the giveaway is open to everyone, not just US residents.
Have you used AwardWallet? Do you have any tips for using the service? Also, let us know your favorite feature of AwardWallet in the comment section below.
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