Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Why you should use AwardWallet to track your frequent flyer miles and hotel loyalty points

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There is only one miles and points tool that I use every day – and have done for a number of years – and that is AwardWallet.

It turns out, however, that I haven’t done a single article in 2023 which talked about AwardWallet.  With a few days of the year left, I want to remedy that.

AwardWallet allows you to store the log-in and password details for pretty much all of the loyalty programmes you are in. It isn’t just travel, either – Nectar, Boots Advantage, Tesco Clubcard, Harrods Rewards …. they cover almost 660 programmes from across the world.

AwardWallet review

Across their entire membership, it is tracking over 211,000,000,000 miles and points for 815,000 users.

You can store programmes for various different people inside one AwardWallet account. When I log in, I see over over 25 different accounts across my family. A clever part of AwardWallet is the ability to sideline schemes which are dormant or rarely used.

Not all programmes are supported, unfortunately.  There are two sorts of exclusions – those that require 2FA or Captcha authentication such as American Express (AwardWallet does work with these programmes but you won’t want to type in multiple 2FA codes or do multiple Captchas each time you run it) and a few that block it deliberately, such as American Airlines and Delta.

You can sit and back and do nothing with AwardWallet if that is how you want to play it. Once a week, AwardWallet will automatically log in to each of your programmes and update your balance. It will then send you a weekly email with all of your balance changes.

For the more obsessive, like myself, you can log in to AwardWallet and simply click ‘Update’. AwardWallet goes off and updates all of your ‘active’ balances immediately (it takes two minutes to check my active ones). On a PC you can leave it running in another window.  There is also an impressive app which lets you check all your miles and points balances on the move.

If you are not already a member of AwardWallet, you can sign up for free here.

What is AwardWallet?

What is AwardWallet Plus?

Whilst AwardWallet is free, you can pay $30 per year to upgrade to ‘Plus’ status.  This comes with a number of extra benefits:

  • Balances update in parallel rather than one at a time (claims a 5x increase in updating speed)
  • The expiry dates of your miles are shown, based on what AwardWallet knows about the expiry rules of the programme, your status and your recent activity
  • You receive email warnings if miles are heading towards expiry
  • You can see historical transactions for some programmes and a graph of changes in your total balance for all programmes
  • You can update your balances multiple times per day (although the free version lets you do it twice per day, which is more than enough for most people!)

A note on security

Some people, understandably, are worried about the security of their account details. (AW is owned privately by a couple of guys in the US albeit they have quite a big team now.) If you are, you can choose to have AwardWallet store all of your log-in and password data locally on your PC, not on their server. The only impact of this is that you are limited to checking your balances on that one device.

My personal view is that using AwardWallet improves your security.  When my Tesco Clubcard vouchers were stolen, it was AwardWallet that notified me.  If I hadn’t seen my balance change, I may not have noticed for months.  AwardWallet has been in business for almost 20 years now without any serious issues.

I am a big fan of AwardWallet, and if you have never used it I recommend taking a look.  It doesn’t take long to set up, and once you have all your data there it becomes quite addictive checking your balances a couple of times a day.  You can sign up here and there is no charge unless you decide to upgrade to Plus at some point.

Comments (20)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Ian says:

    Beware that many people are currently being locked out of their BA accounts for security reasons.

    A common theme is Award Wallet and therefore it is being blamed.

    I also had issues and was also using AW.

    Maybe there is a common link.

    • Paul says:

      Award wallet is a great idea but the constant locking of BA accounts in particular is frustrating. More so when neither Award Walt nor BA will address the issue and say what the problem is!
      I have the paid version which helps track multiple accounts across the family but everyone of us locked out at least twice. The first time took literally hours of effort to resolve send BA ID. The second time was less bureaucratic with just BA awful IT to flight.

      • Daniel says:

        It’s not BA’s fault your account is locked. I’m sure it’s expressly against their T&Cs to give your password out to a 3rd party, not to mention reckless. They are locking accounts to protect you not to be annoying.

        The only way this could be resolved is if the points industry introduced a secure form of “Open banking” as banks to where you authorise an App read only access to your account. That ain’t going to happen though.

        • BBbetter says:

          Exactly. Hope BA locks accounts for longer. These people don’t understand the importance of not sharing passwords.

  • Rob H not Rob says:

    Great idea, but many accounts lock out, disable, or don’t update, no just BA.

    • Thomas says:

      Agree. Nectar doesn’t work. Virgin frequently fails to also. Harrods does not either and also
      Not going to renew this year and see if I miss it…

    • MF176 says:

      Qatar have now added 2FA too which removes them from the list. I won’t be renewing when my time comes

  • John says:

    Why use AwardWallet? Because…

    …you want to heighten the exposure of your loyalty accounts to hackers.
    …you are incapable of managing the accounts locally (using a local password safe such as Keepack to store passwords and a spreadsheet and/or calendar app to track balances and expiration dates).
    …you want to help pay salaries at HfP (who have a classic conflict of interest by receiving money for each AwardWallet sign-up).

    The comments on AwardWallet’s security are not substantiated in the article.

    1.) The lack of publicly-known past successful attacks is not a good indication of future safety and security. They are a high-prize target quite similar to Recall that was hacked with severe consequences for affected users.

    2.) In difference to some other sites, AwardWallet does not follow best practices on security–for instance, their APIs are not open source. They do not provide technical documents such as release notes, CVEs that have been fixed etc.

    3,) Repeatedly, there have been issues with loyalty accounts managed via AwardWallets being blocked temporarily (accessing accounts via a bot may constitute a T&C violation for some programs; also, fraud-detection engines may misinterpret AwardWallet automated logins as a malicious activity/an intrusion attempt).

    • S says:

      Well said. Every time an AW article is posted it baffles me that people are happy to expose their credentials in this way.

      • memesweeper says:

        The number one “NO!” for the security of high-value accounts like travel loyalty accounts is do use the same username (email) and password across them all. Unfortunately this practice is extremely common for entirely predictable reasons. Please don’t do this — get a good password manager like Bitwarden instead.

        • CarpalTravel says:

          Solid advice. Something I have also done for years is use a unique address for all registrations, it shows you who has been compromised and also, allows you to blackhole the spam. Gmail is good for this as you just add a plus (+) and then whatever words.

          e.g. JohnSmith+headforpoints @ gmail, or JohnSmith+Tesco @ gmail. All mail will go to the same address ultimately and so if compromised, only (in theory) the one account will be impacted. Obviously not completely hack proof, but a good step in that direction.

          Downside is if you have to phone someone up and not understanding the reasons, wonder how it is you have their companies name as part of yuor address!

      • Sideshowbob says:

        Especially as your credentials for American Express give access to your credit card account itself.

    • Rob says:

      AwardWallet does not pay for sign ups.

      All we get are some free upgrade codes which we giveaway to readers.

    • Can2 says:

      Completely agreed.

    • Roy says:

      I’m also skeptical that the option to store your credentials locally is really enough to protect you. I looked at this a few years ago and as far as I could surmise the credentials are still sent to AwardWallet’s servers.

      It’s true that this would protect you in the event of a database breach, but not necessarily in other forms of server compromise.

  • holland says:

    If details are stored locally, does that solve the 2FA issue?

  • CarpalTravel says:

    I have seen first, handsupposedly reputable businesses that have kept sensitive PII (and bank/card details) in plain text files, one on a shared drive. One was compromised in a big way. Another firm I only learned about their poor practices after a major data breach, where the investigations revealed that large amounts information and personal documents were compromised, including mine.

    It has shown me the hard way that the fewer instituions that hold my details, credentials, documents and sensitive information, the better.

    Data compromises are a “when” not “if” these days, and it amazes me that people would willingly, provide sensitive information to a business that they know little about for such minor conveniences as what AW offers. I think it similar to the awful Snoop app, where they get to analyse your spending habits so they can try to flog you stuff. Just, no.

  • Jannis says:

    I refuse to use it at all because their UI design is as old as my grandpa!
    At least adhere to IOS flat design

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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