Reasonable Redemption Values (RRVs)

Reasonable Redemption Values (RRVs) are estimates of how much value you can reasonably expect to get from your points.  With almost all points programs, it’s possible to get very little value or, sometimes, huge value from your points.  RRVs are intended to be mid-point values that are reasonably easy to achieve with just a bit of work in finding good rather than poor value awards.

With hotel points, we took an easy approach: the RRVs are the median observed values found when users search for hotel awards.  Half of the available awards offered better value and half worse.  You can read more about hotel RRVs and how they are determined here.  Airline miles are more complicated since award values vary tremendously based on a huge number of factors.  So, we developed a methodology to simplify things.  You can learn about that here: Airline Miles are worth 1.4 cents each. A simplified approach to Reasonable Redemption Values.

With transferable points that offer 1 to 1 transfers to airline miles, the RRV is a simple formula: We increased the standard airline mile RRV by 30%.  The reason for this adjustment is that with transferable points currencies there is a much larger pool of high value awards one can pick from.  So, it is assumed that the median award value for informed consumers will be higher for transferable points.

Please also see: Are points worth what they buy or what they save?

Transferable Points

Program Reasonable Redemption Value Source
Amex Membership Rewards 1.82 30% over standard airline mile value (based on the idea that you can transfer points to any of a number of programs in order to find the best award deals)
Chase Ultimate Rewards 1.82 30% over standard airline mile value (based on the idea that you can transfer points to any of a number of programs in order to find the best award deals)
Citi ThankYou Rewards 1.82 30% over standard airline mile value (based on the idea that you can transfer points to any of a number of programs in order to find the best award deals)
Capital One Miles 1.36 75% of the value of the above transferable points programs due to the Capital One 1,000 to 750 transfer ratio.

The above RRVs assume that points are transferred to airline miles and used for medium to high value awards. If, instead, you pay with points for travel the redemption value will be lower.

Airline Miles

Program Reasonable Redemption Value Source
Air Canada Aeroplan 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
Alaska MileagePlan 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
American AAdvantage 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
Avianca LifeMiles 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
British Airways Avios 1.17 What are oddball airline miles worth?
Cathay Pacific Asia Mies 1.17 What are oddball airline miles worth?
Delta SkyMiles 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
Frontier Bonus Miles 1.02 What are oddball airline miles worth?
Hawaiian Miles 0.81 What are oddball airline miles worth?
JetBlue 1.43 What are JetBlue TrueBlue points worth?
Korean Airlines 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
LATAM Pass 0.67 What are oddball airline miles worth?
Miles & More (Lufthansa) 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
Southwest Rapid Rewards 1.5 The new true value of Southwest points, 2018 edition
United MileagePlus 1.4 What are airline miles worth?
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club 1.4 What are airline miles worth?

Hotel Points

Program Reasonable Redemption Value Source
Best Western 0.58 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017
Choice 0.81 Hotel Hustle Median Observed Value (as of 11/14/2017)
Radisson Rewards 0.38 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017
Expedia+ 0.71 3500 points = $25 hotel coupon = .71 cents per point
Hilton Honors 0.45 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017
Hyatt Gold Passport 1.74 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017
IHG Club 0.57 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017
Marriott Rewards 0.72 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017
Starwood Preferred Guest 0.72 SPG rewards points are identical to Marriott Rewards points as of 8/18/18
Wyndham 0.70 Pointimize Median Observed Value as of 11/14/2017

Other

Program Reasonable Redemption Value Source
Amtrak Guest Rewards 2.56 Points are worth up to 2.56 cents each on Acela trains and up to 2.9 cents each on other routes.
Arrival+ Points 1 Even though there is a 5% rebate when points are redeemed for travel, this estimate is based on the amount of travel that can be bought with existing points regardless of rebates.
CNB Rewards 1.25 When points are used for airfare, the points are more valuable for more expensive flights.  Point values range from 1.01 to 1.31 cents per point. Flights costing $300 offer about 1.25 cents per point value.  See: The Exact Value of CNB Crystal Visa Infinite Points.
FlexPerks 1.5 FlexPerks moved to fixed 1.5 cents per point value as of 1/1/2018
Merrill+ Points 1.44 Assumes using 25,000 points for $360 flight
PenFed Premium Travel Reward 0.85 How much are PenFed points worth?
Most other bank points 1 Most bank point programs have points redeemable for 1 cent each for gift cards or travel.

Update History

11/20/2018: Lowered Amtrak RRV to the Acela rate (1.56)

4/5/2018: Changed Southwest RRV from 1.6 to 1.5 due to devaluation in Wanna Get Away fare awards.

11/14/2017: Updated hotel values based on more recent data. Changed source from Hotel Hustle to Pointimize for many values

3/28/2017: Added CNB Rewards, PenFed Premium Travel Rewards

Last updated on January 17th, 2019

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