Some links to products and partners on this website will earn an affiliate commission.
E-Rewards is often maligned as a good idea in principle – after all, it offers free miles or hotel points in exchange for filling in surveys – but one that eventually ends up frustrating a lot of people. As a result, InsideFlyer UK usually recommends just signing up for a new account when offered a sign-up bonus (using a different e-mail address), before cashing out after attempting the single survey that triggers the bonus.
I don’t find E-Rewards to be nearly as annoying as others. Perhaps due to practice and some “hacking” strategies, I receive a higher “time spent : miles earned” ratio than many. So I thought I would share my experiences with E-Rewards.
Firstly, you can only join E-Rewards if invited by a participating company. This is usually simple enough. Tom has shared sign-up bonuses offered via Avios.com (and BA) and Hilton Honors. Some referrals leave you locked into a limited number of payout options. Other referrals leave you open to a wide variety of payout options. This variety can be overwhelming – unfortunately I can’t remember where I was referred from, but I have lots of payout options on my main account – so the first thing I would like to share is my valuation of the various payout options based on the indicative valuations listed in my recent post.
If you are able to pay out to Iberia Plus, this is usually the highest value reward, with 8,000 Opinion Points getting you 3,000 Avios. Surprisingly, Hilton Honors comes a close second if you are able to pay out the maximum 8,000 Opinion Points for 7,000 Honors points. IHG Rewards Club is an appalling option although, until recently, those points used to be considered Elite Qualifying Points and therefore had substantial secondary value if you were trying to reach Platinum or Spire via the total points route.
Valuation aside, the availability of different airlines and hotel chains can be a lifesaver if you are facing an imminent expiry of miles or points. Rather than buy miles or rush out to do a mattress run, you could chose to pay out a few thousand Opinion Points and extend the life of your miles/points balance for free. Although, even in such scenarios I like to think to myself “would I be willing to spend 750 Avios (£7.50-8) to get 1,000 Club Carlson points or 500 Virgin Atlantic miles?” (the answer is often no and I look for different ways to remain active!)
Of course, miles & points junkies can sometimes forget that hard cash is a whole lot more practical than miles or hotel points. So if you regularly stay at Accor hotels or shop at M&S, Boots, Amazon, Sainsburys, etc. it is also worth considering taking your E-Rewards payout as cash equivalent vouchers.
If you are a survey-taking machine like me – I do them when the adverts come round on the telly… – then you might run into restrictions on the amount of Iberia Plus Avios you can extract each month. As I understand it, you can only:
Withdraw once every thirty days to the same reward partner OR account with that partner
Now, I apologise for the slightly inelegant way of expressing the above. But what this means that, ahem ahem, your “E-Rewards Account A” can payout Avios to your Iberia Plus account whilst your “E-Rewards Account B” can simultaneously payout Avios to your partner’s Iberia Plus account (but not yours). I’ve also found that your “E-Rewards Account C” can pay Avios to either Iberia Plus account, but only if that specific Iberia Plus account hasn’t received a payout from any E-Rewards account within the last 30 days.
What About Finding Surveys to Take?
I suspect that the main complaint with E-Rewards is that you can be e-mailed a survey, fill in the preliminary questions (or worse, fill in what feels like most of the survey) and then get thrown out to only receive the miserly consolation points. I can’t really share my strategies on an open forum using my real name, but with practice you soon learn how to avoid getting thrown out at the first hurdle. But a tip I can share is to hang on to the generic e-mail that E-Rewards sometimes send – it will look like this.
Then, whenever you have some free time, you can click on this e-mail and E-Rewards will usually find a survey for you.
Taking surveys in order to earn miles isn’t for everybody. But by making sure you choose the highest value reward options, you can watch the Avios really add up. Even though it does involve some investment of time, how many weeks/months of pay from your day job would you require in order to afford that intercontinental flight in Business Class?