Point.me Flight Award Search Review
Ever get frustrated while trying to find award seats for an upcoming trip? For those who love earning miles but dread the booking process, Point.me might be just the answer. This new service aggregates award inventory and prices, letting you compare all the current options using various currencies, including all your favorite bank points. In this Point.me review, we break down how the service works, it’s pros and cons, and its value for the frequent award traveler.
New Trial Offer – $1 For 1 Month
We have a new trial offer for MtM readers that I think is way better than the old 24 hours free trial. With this offer when you sign up for an account you will get the first month for $1. If you decide it isn’t for you then you can cancel at the end of the first month. If it works out for you then you will be rolled into Point.me’s regular plan.
To take advantage of this go to Point.me:
- Select Self Serve
- Standard Plan
- Then Monthly or Annual (Monthly if just testing, annual if you plan to do it long term anyway).
- You use the code MILESTOMEMORIES when you select standard plan and then go to pay. The price should drop to $1 for the first month.
DO NOT plug in the code in the I have a code section. This is not for that (the 24 hour codes are gone).
From reader Dr. Jay, which may help some people.
At first there was no monthly plan. You have to change the toggle switch on the annual plan to turn off annual billing, then it changes to the monthly plan and only charges you for 1 month.
Point.me Review: Features, Pros, and Cons
Point.me bills itself as a way to stop wasting your points by being a one-stop-shop for checking all available flight award options. Features include:
- Ability to search real-time flight award inventory on over 150+ airlines
- Ability to see award prices in numerous miles and points currencies – Point.me is compatible with 30+ loyalty programs
- Syncing your loyalty balances (by interfacing with AwardWallet)
- Providing retail prices alongside award prices so you can determine the value of each redemption option
The search functionality supports one-way or round-trip travel in all cabins, for up to nine passengers. You do have to select between ‘Economy & Premium Economy’ and “Business & First’ when searching. There is no option to see all cabins.
As soon as you hit ‘Search’, Point.me will start pulling award flight inventory. The search can take a while. The note on the page says up to two minutes. I noticed that inventory from most programs arrives in under a minute. This is a search of live inventory from different loyalty programs.
You can filter the results in various ways to find the best options for you. The three options (Airlines, Stops, Times) under the origin box let you select/unselect specific airlines, number of stops, and departure times.
The sort feature on the right gives you three options for organizing results: Quickest Flights, Points Low to High, and Point.me Picks.
Points Low to High is my favorite way to search. I’m typically looking for the cheapest award option. ‘Point.me Picks’ is supposed to recommend the best options for booking based on a mix of factors. Without understanding what this does (e.g. potentially filter out BA awards with $700+ in taxes), I’m hesitant to use it, afraid I may miss an option I like. Points low to high is good for me.
The selector to filter results to match my loyalty accounts didn’t quite work how I expected. It will filter out results for which you don’t have loyalty accounts in Award Wallet or any program points/ability to transfer points. At least that’s how I observe it working. It doesn’t account for whether you have enough miles.
For example, one search was showing options for Aer Lingus business class for 280,000 Alaska miles. Although I have Alaska miles, I don’t have this many. To me, it would make more sense if this result was filtered out. Maybe this is something they will add in the future. In my mind, a filter completely tailored to your loyalty accounts including balances and transfer options will prove more valuable.
You can see the booking currency and potential transfer currencies for each option. Selecting an option will then take you into a step-by-step booking process, which I’ll cover in a minute.
Point.me previously had a simple list of previous searches that was based on the date you performed the search. Not the date of travel. I didn’t find it useful. Turns out, Point.me has pulled it entirely.
If it showed the travel dates and a link to re-search that exact itinerary, I can see some utility there. We don’t know if such a feature will come back.
For flights you have booked, you can use the Reward Flights link under your account.
One great feature of Point.me is the ability to connect to AwardWallet, another popular tool for award travelers. I have had an AwardWallet account for years, and I maintain all loyalty balances I can with them. You can authorize Point.me to connect to AwardWallet and read your account balances and elite statuses.
This connection could be quite a benefit for people who don’t know their balances off the top of their heads. Point.me should eventually be able to recommend award options tailored to your specific programs and balances.
Although the UX is very good overall, you may notice some occasional issues. Point.me is still a work in progress and there may be bugs. I encountered an error when trying to connect to AwardWallet, but after refreshing the page, my AwardWallet balances showed. Point.me also pulls the sync date.
Features in the Works
There are a handful of additional features that are in the works. Right now, Point.me searches are limited to a single day for departure and return. A multi-day search will eventually be launched. They also plan to launch account alerts for specific inventory. They also plan to make the search results better over time. More features could quickly make Point.me worth it to even more users.
How to Book a Trip Using Point.me
Overall, I find the Point.me interface intuitive and easy to use. The landing page is also the search page, which I’ve already walked through. You first need to search your origin and destination and select an option. Walk through the Search Features section above to see this process.
Once you make a selection from the list of potential flights, you’ll be presented with a new list of booking options. For many flights, there will be multiple ways you can book, especially if there are multiple bank currencies that you can transfer to the required miles. I did notice that “Book with my existing program points” was nicely greyed out, as I do not currently have 92,600 Aeroplan miles in my account.
Point.me will tell you what you need to do to complete your booking. As an award search service, Point.me is unable to access airline websites directly to complete your booking fully from their site. But they can walk you through the whole booking process.
And the walkthrough isn’t just a list of steps. These are shown on the first page, but once you click ‘Book your Flight’, you’ll be walked through everything. Point.me includes both a detailed list of steps and animations/screenshots of how to search/transfer/book your trip. It’s quite slick.
Point.me Subscription Cost and Free Trial
How much does Point.me cost? Their services page shows the different prices for the self-search plan. The Standard Plan starts at $129 per year or $12 monthly. You can also purchase a premium plan for $260 per year which provides a discount on their concierge services and a handful of Starter Passes to provide to friends and family. The Starter Pass is one-time access to Point.me for 24 hours that is intended to let you test the service. This pass costs $5.
Point.me is offering Miles to Memories readers a coupon code that will let you test out the Starter Pass for free! Head over to the Point.me services page and click “Get Started” under “I have a code!”, and enter our code:
Is Point.me Worth It?
For me, as an award travel nut who knows the ins and outs of numerous airline award search sites, I’m personally split on whether Point.me is worth it. There are a ton of great features, and the time it saves you as a one-stop-shop is valuable. I did find myself recently using their search tool as my first choice to find business class seats for a possible trip to Peru, as I knew it would pull inventory from multiple programs.
In other cases, I know which miles I’d like to use for a specific trip and will search one or two programs directly. Or, as is more typical, I use one site for a particular alliance and then move over to the booking currency after finding the award I want.
For the non-miles-and-points nerd who is intimidated or overwhelmed by the award search process, Point.me could be well worth it. A cost of $12 per month to save you both time and help you find the best deal for your points could be well worth it. For example, if you save 10,000 miles on one trip by using Point.me, you could recoup the entire value of the service for the entire year.
It’s up to you to decide whether Point.me is worth it or not. The service has an easy-to-use UI, great features (including an awesome link with Award Wallet), all for a very reasonable price.