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My Favourite Ways to Earn Miles and Points

With the ever changing world of miles and points (for example, very little referral bonus opportunities left), I constantly feel like I need to change up my earning strategy. I previously wrote an article about my top ways to earn points. Today, I will talk about my favourite ways to earn and why.

1) Credit card Sign Up Bonuses

This is by far my favourite way to earn miles and points. There is currently not even a close second. The CIBC Aerogold Visa for Business is the latest credit card that I got, where I will be earning 25,000 Aeroplan miles and first year fee ($180) waived. I am still waiting for my first statement to receive my miles. This is such a great way to earn a lot of miles in one shot, without really having to do too much. All you really need to do is be familiar with how the credit score is calculated and you will be good to go!

2) Conversion / Transfer Bonuses

The two main programs that offer a nice transfer bonus are Avion/RBC Rewards and American Express Membership Rewards. This is almost like generating points out of thin air. For example, if you transfer 10,000 points, with a 30% transfer bonus, you will come out with 13,000 miles. You are generating 3,000 bonus miles with so little effort. The only effort you really have to put in is to time the promotional period. You do need to have the points available at that time.

3) Doing Surveys

I know that lots of people find this a waste of time, because we earn points too slowly. Think about it this way, have you ever had a day where you feel like relaxing, and you just want to be lazy at home? Or you are waiting in line for … pretty much anything these days (if you live in a big city). Well, that’s where surveys come in. Whenever I am waiting in line for something, I see lots of people in their phones, chatting away, playing games, etc. I’m the guy who’s doing surveys on his phone. Great way to earn points while killing time. And back to the being lazy factor. Yes, I am probably not the type of guy who will just turn on the TV and lay on the couch. I may still do that, but I will have a survey on my iPad going at the same time, especially during commercials.

4) Spending Bonuses / Stacking Promotions

Any time there are bonus promotions for spending, such as 5x the miles or points, shopping portals, etc., I always try my best to delay a purchase, by waiting for a spending bonus to earn more points than usual for the same purchase. I always look for double dipping opportunities as well. For example, you may see an item on sale, along with a bonus points promotions offered on top.

5) Credit Card Spending

You probably know this by now, but I really hate spending money. So this is why credit card spending is the lowest on the list, but at least we are still earning rewards.

I am one of those people who will say, even if I had $1 million in my bank account, I still won’t spend it. But, we can’t really live without spending at least some money, so I am going to get some sort of reward for it. So the next time you see some guy lining up in front of you, paying for a pack of gum that costs less than $1 with his credit card, you know it’s me.

The next time you see a group of friends in a restaurant splitting the bill, and one person is collecting all the cash to pay with his credit card, hands up it’s me!

I will say this though, most retailers who accept credit cards as a method of payment, already marked up their price, to factor in the cost they pay to credit card companies. So if we aren’t paying with credit cards, we are actually overpaying in a sense.


There you have it. I listed my favourite ways to earn miles and points. You will notice that most of these ways require very minimal effort relative to other options out there, aside from surveys I guess.

So tell me, what are your favourite ways of earning miles and points?

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