Last week, though, Wyndham did something which should be a lesson for every Head for Points reader. Overnight, they devalued their reward chart for conversion to airline miles by 50%.
1 Wyndham point was, with most airlines, worth 0.4 miles. From January 31st, it is worth only 0.2 miles.
No notice was given of this change.
Club Carlson did something similar last year. It wasn’t quite as bad as this for small amounts, but at the top end it went from 100,000 points = 18,000 miles to 100,000 points = 10,000 miles. In some ways the Carlson devaluation was even less fair, since the transfer rate improved with bigger conversions, which encouraged people to hang on – until they got shafted overnight.
The lesson, of course, is not to hoard miles and points if you can help it. Almost certainly, your miles will devalue over time as redemption rates get worse. Usually you will get some advance notice, but sometimes a programme will pull a fast one, like Wyndham.
Of course, this opens up again the wider debate about ‘loyalty’ and about how ‘loyal’ the programme should be to you ….
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