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1 in 2 point hackers earn 250,000-plus points a year – enough to fly Sydney-New York return on business class

February 27, 2019 Loyalty No Comments Email Email

Where can point-hacking really taking you? New research has revealed the number of points and flights that Australia’s real point hackers are enjoying just by being in the know.

Point Hacks (, an independent platform for one of Australia’s largest communities of airline rewards experts, surveyed 1600 of its members to reveal that a significant proportion earn a high level of points and are enjoying flights at the pointy end of the plane.

Far from being high-earning, older frequent flyers, the survey discovered that the demographic of point hackers is much more diverse. Fifty-four (54) per cent of respondents who answered the survey are under 50, a third (33 percent) are in a middle management role, and 24 per cent are in a junior-to-mid level position at work. However, they love travel. On average, half (50 per cent) of respondents take five or more domestic flights a year, and 70 per cent take at least two international flights a year.

 9 in 10 point hackers earn at least 100,000 points a year

When asked how many points they earned last year, 89 per cent of respondents earned at least 100,000, 55 per cent earned at least 250,000, and a lucky 22 per cent earned 500,000 or more.

Forty-seven (47) per cent are enjoying lounge access, priority boarding and extra baggage allowance because they have reached gold or platinum status on at least one airline rewards program. Around 1 in 3 (30 per cent) have flown first class, 60 per cent of which have used their points to book, or upgrade to, a first class seat.

Flights are the most popular redemptions

The majority of respondents have redeemed their points on flights and upgrades.

Flight redemptions

It looks as though point hackers are redeeming points for international flights more than domestic flights. More than half (58 per cent) have redeemed points on at least one domestic flight, and a quarter (27 per cent) used their points towards at least three domestic flights. Two-thirds (62 per cent) have booked at least one international flight with their points, and nearly half (46 per cent) have booked at least two international flights.

Two-thirds (61 per cent) redeemed their rewards points for at least one business class or premium economy flight, and 1 in 3 (30 per cent) have spent it at least three flights in the same classes. A lucky 14 per cent have used their points to book at least one first class flight.

Non-airline product redemptions

Point hackers know that flights are the best-value redemption. Despite this, a surprising 40 per cent of the survey respondents said they put their points towards one or more nights in a hotel last year to indulge, just 6 per cent redeemed their points for box seats at games, 8 per cent redeemed points for technology items, and 10 per cent redeemed for gift items.

Point Hacks’ spokesperson and frequent flyer expert, Daniel Sciberras, says: “Redeeming your points on flights – particularly on premium classes – is the best way to maximise the value of them. This is something the Point Hacks community are very aware of and continue to do – rather than purchasing tech items or other products. For instance, a Sydney to New York business class return flight costs 256,000 Qantas Points or 120,000 in economy. However, a business class ticket will set you back more than $8000 and an economy ticket is worth around $1300. From these calculations, you will get a sixfold increase in value for only double the points.”

Number of points the Point Hacks community earned in the last 12 months across airline rewards programs and other rewards programs

Number of points earned % of respondents
Under 50,000 points 12%
Closer to 100,000 points 34%
Closer to 250,000 points 33%
Closer to 500,000 points 14%
Closer to 750,000 points 3%
Closer to 1 million points 3%
Well over 1 million points 2%

Most popular award redemptions

Number of domestic flights redeemed (including upgrades) % of respondents
0 42%
1-2 31%
3-5 18%
5-7 5%
7-10 2%
10-15 1%
15+ 1%

Number of international flights redeemed (including upgrades) % of respondents
0 37%
1 16%
2 19%
3 5%
4 10%
5+ 11%

Number of business class or premium economy flights redeemed (including upgrades) % of respondents
0 39%
1-2 31%
3-5 18%
5-7 7%
7-10 3%
10-15 1%
15+ 1%

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