The beginners guide to airline shopping portals – The Points Guy

Editor's note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with the latest information.
Newcomers to the points and miles world often think that the only way to earn loyalty with an airline is by flying frequently or using their travel rewards credit card.
There are many ways to earn points and miles, and one of the easiest is through online shopping portals. Shopping portals reward you with points and miles (and status, in the case of American Airlines) without leaving your home.
It boosts your points alongside flying and credit card earnings and offers the opportunity to double or even triple dip. While there are shopping portals that offer cash back and hotel points, we will focus on airline shopping portals.
Online shopping portals offer the opportunity to earn bonus points and miles by shopping at various online retailers. When combined with a rewards credit card, the rewards become even more lucrative.
The points can accumulate whether you're making small purchases like ordering photos or significant ones like buying a new MacBook Air. One practical example is when ordering everyday necessities such as contacts. Starting through an airline's shopping portal, like AAdvantage eShopping, you can earn 5 miles per dollar spent at
Say you're spending $500 a year on contacts. Here's what you could be earning:
Now, you've racked up 3,500 bonus miles by saving time and preordering your contacts.
Related: Your guide to maximizing shopping portals for your online purchases
Here's how to optimize your purchases through these portals to maximize your earnings.
All major airlines have shopping portals available, so choosing an airline you frequently fly with is important. You can refer to our latest valuations for the most valuable airline miles. Also, as mentioned, American Airlines AAdvantage eShopping purchases earn status-qualifying Loyalty Points and redeemable miles.
Most carriers only credit redeemable miles for shopping portal purchases, so you might want to go with American to earn AAdvantage elite status.
Before earning miles, you must have an account with your chosen airline. Setting up an account is a straightforward and crucial step in the process.
Shopping portal extensions are browser add-ons or plug-ins that allow users to easily access and activate rewards while shopping online. By downloading the plug-in, you will be notified with a pop-up if a site you're shopping on offers points. All you have to do is click "activate."
These extensions often provide a seamless shopping experience, allowing users to take advantage of bonus offers and earn rewards while making online purchases.
To earn points, go directly to your preferred portal and shop from there.
Here are some of the more popular airline shopping portals:
Depending on the portal, it can take several weeks for the miles to be credited to your frequent flyer account.
Here are some important things to remember when using shopping portal extensions or sites:
These tips can help maximize your rewards and ensure a smooth shopping experience through shopping portals.
Online shopping portals are an excellent way for all types of travelers and online shoppers to easily increase their points and miles. You can start earning bonus miles without needing a credit card approval. If you have a travel rewards credit card, it's a perfect chance to double dip and maximize your rewards.
Additional reporting by Jordyn Fields and Liz Hund.
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