Redeeming Expedia Points for Flights: Here's How it Works!

In the past couple weeks, I've posted a couple times about Expedia Rewards. I won't rehash everything here, but now you can book flights with Expedia Rewards points. I made a few sample bookings today, and it didn't take me long to figure out exactly how it works. Want to head to the Maldives for a weekend and not pay for it? Me too. I tried to use my Expedia points to do so. Here's the result I got:

219,400 points eh? Well, that sure is a lot of points to spend at Expedia. I don't think I'm going to the Maldives, courtesy of Expedia, anytime soon! My first thought was, "How do they get that number?" I priced out a few other itineraries and they all fluctuated. I then tried to see how much it would cost me to do my weekend in the Maldives with cash. I got the following:

The paid fare is 1/100th the price in points of the award fare. 100 of your points are worth a buck: 1 cent per point. If you redeem for hotel coupons, you can get that value all the way up to 2 cents per point.

I'm not going to complain too much about the valuation, because this is a rewards program that I get for free, without changing any of my current travel habits. I do have one outstanding question, though, and it's a biggie... I don't think Expedia has negotiated a deal with pretty much every carrier out there, but they are showing results for every carrier. So does that mean that when we redeem our points for a flight, they're just buying it from the airline? And if that's true, does that mean that we would earn frequent flier miles on award ticket? Does that mean we'll be able to use a SWU on a ticket purchased through Expedia? Somehow, I doubt it, but maybe there's a chance. I've e-mailed Expedia for an answer, and I'll report when I hear back


Carmela January 17, 2013 at 12:12 am

So i guess my 1,043 points won't make any difference if i use them towards a flight ticket?

seth July 2, 2013 at 05:24 pm

No answer yet eh?

Diana Forest November 8, 2013 at 01:57 pm

I could not log into my rewards account because they said my password was incorrect. so instead of backing out of my reservation i completed it without using my rewards account number. I emailed Expedia and asked them to credit my account and can you believe they said no!! They said i was not a member until after i made my reservation. So not only do you need alot of points to do anything they will not credit you for any points you could have had. Very poor customer service. Thank goodness there are several other websites to use that will have better service.

rosvita toplak December 1, 2013 at 06:00 pm

can i use my points so, that i change my economic ticket for bussines or first class tickets, thank u, Rosvita Toplak

John March 25, 2014 at 01:44 pm

Expedia is still offering a free app for your phone. A link is sent to your phone that takes you right back to the web page where you enter your phone number. After some research, I found that Expedia no longer publishes the mobile app.

Lynn May 12, 2014 at 12:40 pm

Whne my work buys my airline ticket, I get the miles. When I buy my family a ticket, they get the miles. I would assume that this is the same... if you occupy the seat, you get the airline miles.

Lynn May 12, 2014 at 02:14 pm

I just did quick comparison and it was 90,400 points for a $179 flight from LAX to Las Vegas on July 4 weekend. I saw LAX - ORD r/t for 65,300 points or $415. At the current rate of 1 point per $5, I would need to spend over $300,000 in flights to get that free ticket.

Lissa May 12, 2014 at 07:24 pm

Are the points counted the same way even with hotels? (100 POINTS=1 DOLLAR)

Suz December 3, 2014 at 06:24 pm

Last week I turned in 42,000 points that I had saved up for a $300 coupon. That I am unable to use for any hotel anywhere in the world. When I wrote to complain, the response I got was a list of instructions to do exactly what was complaining I had already done - that did not work. I've been using Expedia since they "opened shop" on the internet. If they don't fix this, I will be done for good.

Amanda May 17, 2015 at 03:01 am

Hi everyone,

Yes it seems a bit worthless, the expedia points system. I was trying to work it out as i am doing a lot of travel this year - I think sounds better - even though it seems they are owned by or affiliated with expedia. At for every 10 nights you stay you get one free. I haven't redeemed one yet, but it seems like a pretty good deal as it should work out to a 9+% saving overall if in fact they do average the value of your 10 paid nights for the freebie.

Collettina August 22, 2015 at 05:55 pm

Due to being criminally defrauded (police report and all necessary filings done), and due to Bank of America not recognizing the validity of my being defrauded, I am stuck with my Expedia Citi Bank credit card and cannot apply for another until I get this straightened out. I have booked flights with my Expedia card the conversions stinks. I would gladly get an airline miles card and will when "the nightmare" is over, but in the meantime I make do. The points exchange is ludicrous. Very bad deal, terrible customer service, and Citi Bank made a fortune during the bailout. Still does make a fortune.

Sam December 5, 2015 at 08:53 am

You'll find that all free points work the same way. I have choice privilege points. I have 12000 but it takes 25000 for a free night anywhere close to where we live. Now they will remove 5000 because I didn't use before year end. I joined Expedia points a short time ago and have 6600 points. Guess I won't have a free trip very soon, so I guess this is only what I expected. The only one I don't have a problem with is Air Miles.

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