How to Optimize Shopping Portals for Points and Miles

If you’re an avid online shopper, you’ve probably come across shopping portals. But do you know how to optimize these portals to earn more points and miles? This guide will walk you through the ins and outs of shopping portals, and how to make the most of them.

What Are Shopping Portals?

Shopping portals are websites that offer bonus rewards for online purchases. They are often tied to airline, hotel, or credit card loyalty programs. By shopping through these portals, you earn additional points or miles on top of what you would normally earn with your rewards credit card. This means you get to double-dip on rewards, making your online shopping even more rewarding.

How Do Shopping Portals Work?

Essentially, shopping portals work as intermediary platforms. They partner with hundreds of online retailers, and when you make a purchase through the portal, they earn a commission. A portion of this commission is then passed on to you in the form of points, miles, or cash back.

Here’s a simple breakdown of how it works:

  1. Log into your preferred shopping portal
  2. Search for the store you want to shop at
  3. Click on the store link within the portal
  4. You’ll be redirected to the store’s website
  5. Shop as you normally would and complete your purchase
  6. Bonus points, miles, or cash back will be credited to your account

The key here is to always start your online shopping journey via the portal. If you go directly to the retailer’s website, you won’t earn the bonus rewards.

How to Choose the Right Shopping Portal

With numerous shopping portals available, choosing the right one can be a bit daunting. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Travel Goals: If you’re saving for a dream vacation, choose a portal connected to the airline or hotel you plan to use.
  • Reward Rates: Check which portal offers the highest reward rate for the store you want to shop at. Websites like can help you compare reward rates across different portals.
  • Preferred Rewards: Some people prefer airline miles, others prefer hotel points, and others prefer cash back. Choose a portal that offers the type of reward you prefer.

Maximizing Your Earnings with Shopping Portals

Simply using a shopping portal can boost your rewards earnings, but there are strategies to take it a step further:

Take Advantage of Seasonal Bonuses and Retailer Promotions

Shopping portals often run promotions around major shopping holidays or feature specific retailers for a limited time. These promotions can significantly boost your earnings. For example, you could earn extra miles for every dollar spent or a fixed bonus for reaching a certain spending level.

Use a Rewards Credit Card

This is where the double-dipping comes in. By using a rewards credit card for your purchases, you earn points or miles from both the credit card and the shopping portal.

Compare Prices

Make sure you’re not paying more just to earn rewards. Compare prices across different retailers and factor in shipping costs. Some portals offer free shipping or have partnerships with free shipping services like ShopRunner.

Track Your Purchases

Always keep a record of your purchases and the rewards you’re supposed to earn. If your rewards don’t post, you’ll have evidence to back up your claim.

Popular Shopping Portals to Consider

Many airlines, hotels, and credit card issuers have their own shopping portals. Here are some popular ones:

Each portal offers different reward rates, so it’s worth comparing before making a purchase.


Shopping portals are an easy and effective way to earn more points and miles. By choosing the right portal and employing smart shopping strategies, you can optimize your earnings and get closer to your travel goals. Whether you’re a frequent traveler or just someone who loves online shopping, these portals can add great value to your purchases.