5 Easy Ways to Earn Points for Airbnb Stays (Updated 2020)

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My friend Meghan asked if I knew of any ways to save on an Airbnb booking. I gave the obvious one – get up to $35 off a booking with a new account.

save on airbnb

New to Airbnb? Save $20 off your first $200+ stay, plus get $15 off your first $50+ experience booking

Most everyone has an Airbnb account by now. But if you don’t, here’s my link if you’d like to sign up (and I’ll get a $10 travel credit as well).

That’s honestly the biggest savings. Still, there are other ways to get a return on your Airbnb stay: earn points or miles for it. Depending how you like to redeem them, you can get big value by stacking a few of the methods I’ll tell you about.

Lezz begin, shall ve?

5 ways to earn points and miles for Airbnb stays

These tricks are so easy that you’re literally leaving points on the table if you don’t use them. A couple of them require certain credit cards – but a couple are total freebies.

1. Get 1X Delta miles

Do I like Delta miles? Not my fave. But I certainly won’t say no to them if it’s as simple as clicking a link.

Earn Delta miles every time you stay with Airbnb

All you have to do is start your booking at the link above.

Considering Delta miles never expire, there’s no reason not to scoop this up. A little here and there can add up over time. And Delta does have some flash sales that are worth a look.

You can transfer Amex Membership Rewards points to Delta instantly at a 1:1 ratio. But it’d be nice if you already have some miles in there so you can save your points for other award flights. 😉

2. Or Get 2X British Airways Avios points

If you’re open to an international program, you can alternately earn 2X British Airways Avios points per $1 spent on your Airbnb booking. Similar to Delta, just navigate to the link above and click through to start your booking.

Double the fun

The benefit is you’ll get twice the amount of points as you’d get with Delta, but it’s a foreign points program which might turn some people off. That said, you can book short-haul flights on American Airlines with these points because they’re partners. And there are some great values to be had – especially on short, expensive flights.

Plus, you’ll get 2X points instead of 1X.

The other perk is you’ll earn 6X British Airways Avios points on your first booking. So if you’re new to Airbnb and like this points program, it’s a nice double dip.

3. 2X United miles through MileagePlus X

I told y’all about MileagePlus X back in April 2016. Y’all been using it?

You need this app

I sure hope so! You can purchase Airbnb gift cards through this app for an extra 2X United miles on your booking. Even better, if you have the Chase United Explorer card, you get a 25% bonus for every one you buy – and NO, you don’t have to pay with the card to get the bonus.

A $300 gift card from above would earn you 600 United miles. Or 750 miles if you have the Chase United Explorer card.

Chase United Explorer60,000 United miles
• 2 United miles per $1 spent on United purchases, at restaurants, and on hotel stays

• $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck

• First checked bag free when you pay for your ticket with the card

• 2 United Club lounge passes per cardmember year ($100 value)
• $95 annual fee, waived the first year• $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open
• Compare it here

United miles do NOT expire. So this is an easy way to add to your earnings – and it stacks with the offers above! This should also code as travel, so if you have a card that earns bonus points on travel (like the Chase Sapphire Reserve which earns 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel), be sure to use it.

If you have a lot of Airbnb stays, you might end up with an award flight sooner than you think. Top off your account with instant 1:1 transfers from Chase Ultimate Rewards. And again, add to your stash if you already have a stash of United miles!

4. Or buy Airbnb gift cards at stores + use card bonus categories and promos

You can purchase Airbnb gift cards at grocery stores and office supply stores. If you have a credit card that earns bonus points at these places, you’ll earn extra for your Airbnb gift cards.

For example:

  • Chase Ink Business Cash earns 5% cashback (5X Chase Ultimate Rewards points) at office supply stores on the first $25,000 spent in all 5X bonus categories combined
  • Amex Gold card earn 4X Amex Membership Rewards points at US supermarkets, on up to $25,000 per year in purchases

Don’t forget Amex Offers

And definitely check to see if there are any stores that sell Airbnb gift cards with active Amex Offers if you have any Amex cards! For example, I found offers to get:

  • 10% back at Staples
  • $10 back at Sam’s Club
  • Extra 1X point at Lowe’s + 10% back

Getting extra cashback or extra points (especially the 10% back offers) is an excellent way to save on a stay.

There are some limitations to know about paying with Airbnb gift cards, though – and my friends at Middle Age Miles have a great resource with that information.

There are also card-linked promos from time to time.

Don’t look too close

For example, there are deals you can sometimes add to your Chase and Regions cards (and other banks that offer these programs). If you see one, snag it! It’s an easy way to get extra savings on your Airbnb booking. In the past, I’ve seen them for 5% or 10% back – and these savings are as simple as clicking a button.

5. Earn 1.8% cashback through Acorns

I wrote about Acorns, an app that lets you start investing for as little as $5. They have a cool feature called Found Money that’s essentially a cashback portal.

Get 1.8% of your booking to invest in stocks

When you start your booking through Acorns’ Found Money, you’ll get 1.8% of your stay cost to invest, which is pretty rad. There are also 200+ other merchants that let you earn money to invest.

It doesn’t seem like as much as the other options until you consider the power of compound interest. So that 1.8% can end up being many times more if you have a long investing horizon.

Plus, you’ll get $5 free when you sign up with my link!

A few stack stack stacks 💸

Obvi, your powers synergize when you can find a nice stack. Here are a few:

  • 2X United miles from MileagePlus X + 1X Delta miles OR 2X British Airways Avios points + bonus points for travel
  • 1.8% invested + 2X United miles from MileagePlus X
  • Card-linked promotion + bonus points for travel category + 1X Delta miles OR 2X British Airways Avios points
  • 1.8% invested + card-linked promotion + bonus points for travel category

There are potentially several combinations that would work.

save on airbnb

I used these tricks to save on two Airbnb stays in Mexico City

Your personal return will vary based on how much you value your points/miles. And of course, you’ll earn points for paying with credit card that earns points.

You can’t really lose whichever way you choose to stack.

Save on Airbnb bottom line

Of course the best way to save is to get up to $35 off your first booking with a new account – which isn’t helpful for repeat customers. But there’s really no reason not to get some combination of points, miles, or cashback on an Airbnb stay. You can get:

Most of these are freebies, although a couple require you to have certain credit cards (and thanks as always for getting new cards with my links!). Any way you slice it, the savings are there. Especially when you do my favorite thing to save: stack stack stack. 😺

Booking with Airbnb is still practical in many ways: stay where they’re aren’t chain hotels, pay less, or get more space during a trip. Considering you can get savings for clicking a couple of links, it couldn’t be easier.

Do you know of any other creative ways to save on Airbnb stays?

* If you liked this post, consider signing up to receive free blog posts in an RSS reader and you’ll never miss an update! And thanks for using my links to apply for new card offers!


Out and Out has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Out and Out and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.


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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Dallas.

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Comments

  1. One more stack for you Harlan, for a $100 Airbnb GC:

    – Amex Plat —-> MPX/Amazon GC – 5x = 500 MR and 250 UA
    ————————————————-
    – Amazon via Jetblue—> Safeway or Meijer GC = 300 JetBlue Points

    Safeway/Meijer GC —->Amazon GC

    (You could rinse and repeat endlessly here for free JetBlue points)
    ————————————————-
    Or buy the Airbnb GC at Safeway/Meijer store to complete the cycle.

    Use GC for 3x Delta 300 Delta

    Enjoy 🙂

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