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United Airlines Mileage Plus just announced a new angle on mile earning today…
They are letting you turn in your unwanted gift cards online and receive United MileagePlus miles in exchange.
It’s an interesting proposition…we’ve all received gift cards that are for merchants we have no interest in shopping. Yes, you can try to sell the cards for cash on eBay or other online gift exchanges. Or you can try using the gift cards for something mildly useful from the retailer.
So turning them in for miles — a liquid and useful currency for many of us is intriguing, especially in light of the expiration dates on many gift cards.
How much do you get…
Well on FlyerTalk folks are reporting some OK but not great values. Basically each $1 in gift card value is worth about 3-4 miles, so a $25 card can be worth about 600 – 700 miles. Not great, since you’re effectively ‘buying’ the miles at $0.03 – $0.04 each, assuming you would have found value in the gift card another way.
But if you’re like me, you’re often forgetful with gift cards, and you find miles have real value. So why not turn them in online and get something rather than the hassle of opening other accounts and brokering them elsewhere.
Not the greatest deal in the world, but a nice option.
A few catches…
But let’s give United Mileage Plus some props for being first to try this.
Participating gift cards include…
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Foreign Transaction Fee Waived
Points Can Transfer to Airline Miles ?
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