This equates to an earn rate of 3 points for every $50 spent – an effective cashback of 1% based on how much we value Fly Buys points.
There are no fees incurred for online bookings, though this bonus points offer excludes earning points on any taxes.
Remember that you can ‘double dip’ and also earn Airpoints Dollars on Air New Zealand bookings.
Guide to earning and redeeming points with helloworld
Helloworld is a travel agency that offers the ability to book most flights online, and all other travel via their network of stores across New Zealand.
- Earn Fly Buys points on bookings made in-store and online
- Redeem Fly Buys points for flight bookings online
- Redeem American Express Membership Rewards points for bookings made in-store
- Redeem Fly Buys, American Express Membership Rewards or Westpac hotpoints for helloworld gift cards that can be spent in-store
We have explored these varying earn and redeem options below.
You’ll earn 1 Fly Buys point for every $50 spent on travel bookings in-store or online, excluding taxes and fees etc.
You can also redeem your Fly Buys points online.
For every 6 points you redeem, $1 will be credited towards the revenue cost of the flight booking.
This gives each point a value of 16.6 cents.
You have the option of paying for a portion of your flight with points, and the rest with cash. This is a great option for those who do not have the full number of points to redeem towards the entire flight cost. There are no fees incurred for redeeming in this way.
If you prefer to make a booking in-store, you can redeem for a helloworld gift voucher at the same per point value.
American Express Membership Rewards
You can pay for all or part of your next booking using American Express Membership Rewards points.
Each redemption of 10,000 Membership Rewards points will equal $75 that can be spent with helloworld on travel.
This gives each point a value of 0.75 cents.
This is better value than converting to Airpoints Dollars, where you only receive a per point value of 0.57 cents.
This makes helloworld a competitive option for revenue flight redemptions, particularly with Air New Zealand. You will still earn points and status for your flight booking.
The downfall however is that points can only be redeemed in-store, and not online or over the phone.
There is also a gift card option, however at a per point value of 0.65 cents per point, a direct redemption is better value.
Each redemption of 10,000 hotpoints will equal $50 that can be spent with helloworld on travel.
This gives each point a value of 0.5 cents.
You can redeem for a gift card online.
Points earn options
As can be seen above, each points currency has a varied per point value when redeeming for credit to spend with helloworld. However it is important to also consider how easy it is to earn these points in any volume.
While programmes like Fly Buys have varying options for earning points for free, the largest source of everyday points earn for most New Zealanders will be through credit card spend.
On the hypothetical basis that you were selecting a credit card purely for the purpose of earning points to redeem on travel with helloworld, these would be your options (best value options in blue):
|Card||Spend category||Points earned per $1 spent||Helloworld redemption
value (cents) per $1 spent
|American Express Platinum Edge||Supermarkets||3||2.2|
|American Express Platinum Charge||2||1.5|
|Westpac hotpoints World Mastercard||3||1.5|
|Westpac hotpoints Platinum Mastercard||2||1.0|
|Westpac hotpoints Mastercard||1||0.5|
|Westpac BusinessPLUS Mastercard||1.25||0.6|
|BNZ Advantage Visa Platinum||0.066||1.1|
|BNZ Advantage Visa Classic||0.025||0.4|
How to make a booking online
The steps below show you how to make a flight booking online using either cash, Fly Buys, or a mixture of both.
- Visit helloworld.co.nz/flybuys, input your flight search details and click ‘Search Flights’.
You will land on a results options page.
Depending on the airline, you may have other options that you can select when booking. For this example, with Air New Zealand, you can choose between seat only or more flexible options. You are also told whether there are free seat selection options available, dependent on your Airpoints status. You can also see how many standard Fly Buys points you will earn, or how much it would cost in points if you wanted to redeem in full for the flight instead.
Once you click ‘Select’ against your preferred flight, your chosen option will appear at the top of the page. Click ‘Continue’ to progress.
A new tab will open on your browser, again confirming your selected flight details. Make sure that everything is correct, and click ‘Continue’:
The next page will prompt you to input your traveller info.
Remember to input your Fly Buys and frequent flyer information so that you earn points and can take advantage of any status benefits (but first read our guide on where to credit your flight to). Unfortunately, the platform will not show you how many bonus Fly Buys you will earn if there is an offer on.
Click ‘Continue to Payment’ when ready.
The ‘Review & book’ page is where you can choose to pay by card:
Fly Buys points, or a mixture of points and cash:
You can choose to redeem as little as 1 Fly Buys points towards your redemption, which will round up to 17 cents off your flight cost.
If you choose to pay with a mixture of points and cash, the final credit card fees will be reduced proportional to the cash amount remaining.
The final trip cost details will show the cash amount owing, any credit card fees, and the number of Fly Buys points used on the redemption:
Paying by credit card
Remember that you can ‘double dip’ on your points earn by using a rewards credit card.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Payment with Visa or Mastercard will incur a 2% transaction fee, or 3% if paying with American Express.
- Using a Visa Debit or Mastercard Debit will not incur any transaction fees, but this does not rule out points earn, with cards like the Westpac Airpoints Debit Mastercard falling into this card category.
- In many cases, incurring the transaction fee via helloworld will work out cheaper than if you booked via the airline direct. For example, for the flight used in the step-by-step scenario above, the fee for using your American Express would be $1.79 – but booking directly with Air New Zealand would cost a flat fee of $6.00.
The highest earning Fly Buys card is the BNZ Advantage Visa Platinum, where you’ll earn 1 Fly Buys point for every $15 spent.
The highest earning Airpoints card that you can use at helloworld is the American Express Airpoints Platinum, where you’ll earn 1 Airpoints Dollar for every $59 spent.
The highest earning hotpoints card that you can use is the Westpac hotpoints World Mastercard, where you’ll earn 3 hotpoints for every $1 spent.
Helloworld offer a healthy range of point and cash purchase options with both Fly Buys and American Express Membership Rewards.
There are a variety of pros and cons of using a travel agent versus booking direct. The main con for me is that you are adding in an intermediary between you and the airline. Booking direct can also result in a better price.
However, if your travel plans are solid, and there is no price difference, using an online travel agent like helloworld could help you earn a few more points on your next booking.
They are also one of the best uses for Fly Buys points, and typically come out ahead of Airpoints in terms of value when being redeemed for flights with Air New Zealand. You will also avoid extra fees when using a mixture of points and cash, unlike Airpoints Flexipay.
Have you redeemed points with helloworld? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of helloworld.