You have 5 more days to sign up for Etihad Business Connect Program, doing so will earn you 5,000 Etihad Guest Miles. Many of the large carriers have a Business Frequent Flyer programs that work in tandem with the personal accounts – as a Small Business owner this means we get to double dip when flying, which is as nice treat. You will need a Tax Identification Number (TIN) to apply for this.
Personally, I rarely pay for flights anymore, unless I find a really cheap fare to somewhere that I am going which would mean I got poor performance from paying with points, but those are once in a blue moon. What this means is that when I get a boost of say 5,000 Miles in any one program I sometimes find them orphaned, the amount given is rarely enough to actually use, and it is one of those programs that doesn’t have a branded credit card in the US that I can sign up for and boost the points up with… what to do?
Transfer Fail- Boost your Balance by Transferring SPG Points at 1:25
This method doesn’t work, as you cannot transfer into your Business Connect Account, but it is useful to keep in mind if you have other types of mileage orphans that need topping up.
Starwood has one of the most lucrative transfer programs in the market; for every 20,000 SPG Points you Transfer you will receive a bonus of 5,000 more miles- therefore getting a 1:125 rate of exchange – the catch? You are only allowed to transfer 79,999 per day (so if you want to larger quantities you should transfer just 60,000 each time to get the full value. This works great if the account you were topping up is your personal account, but it seems that Etihad keeps the 5,000 in a separate business account balance, which isn’t interchangeable – so you would still have an orphaned off 5,000 Miles by doing this… still a good idea to keep in mind for other programs if they allow sharing.
Go Shopping – this works!
The Etihad Guest Program has a shopping portal that allows you to purchase goods with your points – and there are many options for as little as 5000 points, here is the link http://www.rewards.etihadguest.com/eyloyrewards/home if you select the max number of miles you want you can show only results that you can afford, which is helpful. And I really like that you also have the option to donate ANY NUMBER of miles to a list of charities. This means is you want to pick out something for yourself for say 4500 miles, you can still give that last little bit to a charity, or you can give as much as you like.
Cash out your Points with PointsPay
This is an interesting one, Etihad has Partnered with a company called PointsPay that has both an app, a virtual card and a physical debit card – you can transfer you Etihad Guest Points to PointsPay and use it to pay for anything you like either on the web or in person with the card. The exchange rate isn’t brilliant.. but it means that your free 5,000 points is worth $32.86, for the sake of 34 seconds to fill out the form to join the Etihad Guest Business Connect Program- which is a pretty good hourly rate if you ask me!
Here is the link – valid until July 21st! https://www.etihadairways.com/sites/etihad/businessconnect/en/pages/home.aspx
I decided to donate the full 5,000 miles to House of Hope – Aids Ophans. I thought it was ironic that I could give orphaned miles to orphaned kids and help them out for free. This charity that is dedicated to easing the suffering of the many Children around the world that have been orphaned by AIDS or TB. Many of these Children were born with HIV and AIDs and their parents have since died. This charity homes the Children and provides medicine, and love for them. Perhaps you could find half a minute or so to sign up for the Business Connect program and help one of the 45 Charities listed on the site for free.