I dare say that AwardWallet may be one of my favourite travel hacking website/App out there. It has saved me so much time and trouble over the years, so I held off on commenting about the price increase, because I do not like to speak negative about anything.
What I usually do is abstain from commenting if I have nothing good to say. Anyway, I will get away with that trend this time, seeing as AwardWallet is one of my favourite tools to use, I don’t feel as bad about a small negative commentary.
AwardWallet was going to increase its Plus service price from $5 for 6 months to $30 per year. If you ever paid the $5 fee in the past, you will be grandfathered indefinitely going forward. What that means is that you will only have to continue to pay the same $5 price regardless of the changes.
If you never paid before, you will be subject to the new price.
Personally, I know that one of AwardWallet’s biggest challenge is security. What happens if someone hacks into your account? That is obviously a big issue. The way I see it is that if someone hacks in, they will get access to all our accounts. But to me, it is the same risk as someone hacking into an individual rewards account.
What I like most about it is that I can see most of my loyalty accounts on one page. Furthermore, it has a feature that allows us to click into a rewards account and automatically log into my specific rewards account. I can’t count how much time it has saved me to have this feature. I have over 20 personal loyalty accounts to track (probably not even much compared to many others). Furthermore, I also help track the accounts for many family members who do not want to deal with the hassle, which actually puts me at over 50 accounts. If I had to log into 50 different accounts, even once in a while, it would take way too much time.
Instead, I log into my AwardWallet account about once a day (Yes, that’s how often I check my accounts, that’s Pointshogging for ya!), push the “Update All” button and go do something else while my accounts are updated. Once it’s done, I come back, take a quick look to see if there are any discrepancies and then move on with my day.
Save time is probably my favourite outcome from using AwardWallet. Not to mention the ability to monitor all the loyalty accounts in real time and expiry dates. I also really appreciate the feature that tracks my upcoming trips, which is an underrated feature, granted it does not work for all loyalty programs.
Having the Plus version has some additional features, including:
- Extra reward account properties
- Historical account balance changes chart
- Historical transactions for some loyalty accounts
- Allow exporting award balances into Excel or PDF formats
- Update accounts 5x faster
- Unlimited expiration dates
The question is whether this is worth $30 per year?
For $10 per year, it is totally worth it! However, tripling the price to $30 is a bit of a stretch. I understand that they need more money to sustain their business, but that’s seems like a huge jump. Would have preferred that they did a more gradual increase, maybe $1 increase per year, but started a while back.
AwardWallet was founded in 2004, so I would have like to see them start at $5 per year back then, if they were to increase it by $1 per year, that would be $5 + $13 = $18 per year by now.
In hindsight, my $1 increase per year may or may not have made sense. Some people would probably understand the gradual increase, otherwise may be frustrated with the continual increase. So there is no way to know whether my idea would have made sense. My point is, we are looking at a 200% increase overnight, it’s a bit of a shock to the system.
I suspect that many users will probably end up using the basic version only. I just hope that they don’t trim down what is available in the basic version.
There is still a chance!
The roll-out day was suppose to end yesterday (February 1, 2017); however, it has now been extended until February 15, 2017.
You still have a chance to be grandfathered in the old rules.
Email me if you would like a referral to sign up!