Aussies Can Earn 50,000 Miles On A Personal Loan, And It’s Actually A Pretty Good Deal

Symple is a fintech that’s offering personal loans at a lower cost than established market, and they’re offering 1 Qantas point per dollar borrowed up to 50,000 points.

  • It’s a great deal for anyone who would borrow money anyway, or that’s looking to move debt off of a credit card, since they’re likely to get a better rate and miles.

  • And there may be an interesting opportunity here since there’s no prepayment penalty or minimum time to hold the loan before earning miles.

Chase used to offer United miles for home equity loans with no fees, people would borrow and then repay as soon as the loan funded… In 2004 there was even a bonus of 5250 miles per $10,000 financed. Mileage Plus members (there was a space between the two words in the program name then) were earning up to half a million miles at a cost of around $500. Some even did this more than once.

That level of opportunity here isn’t possible, first because mileage for funding a loan is capped at 50,000 points per transaction and second because many people will have a loan origination fee for taking the funds. The Symple website says there’s a (risk-based) loan origination fee of “0% to 5%” and anyone seeing more than a 1% fee is going to lose out if their only purpose in the transaction was earning the miles.

With no credit ding for pulling up loan costs, and full proposal including costs available during the inquiry process, this does at least seem worth checking out for anyone in the financing market. Australia, where most mortgages are still variable rate, has long seemed like a market ripe for disruption. Symple raised $15 million in a series D earlier this year “taking the total capital [they’ve] raised to date to more than $130 million in combined equity and debt.”

Qantas miles aren’t the greatest, but if you’re in Australia it’s a good part of what you’ve got, and this is better than earning 1 Spirit mile per dollar.

Here in the U.S. up to 15% of people are financing their vacation packages which seems insane to me. Manage your expenses responsibly, but if you can get the best available rate on funds you need to borrow and earn miles (effectively pocketing the lender’s marketing dollars) at the same time that’s a superior outcome.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. Ahh, memories. First got into the mileage game via draws off new HELOCS . Was before the internet, so you had to do wire transfers to pay off the loan, Didn’t get 500k if I recall but definitely well more than 100K and did it multiple times.

    Interest rates were high back then so the interest even on a 7 day draw on 500k was a hurdle.

  2. Ahhh yes, that Chase offer back in 2004 was so nice. There were no upfront costs. Took out a $200K mortgage for one day and repaid the next day. Interest paid for one day was minimal.

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