Bilt introduces unrewarding Milestone Rewards

18

Bilt has a history of surprising us in a positive way. Early on, they somehow secured American Airlines, Hyatt, and United (among others) as transfer partners. I would have bet big, big money against any one of those partnerships happening, but they did. Then they started offering unbelievably generous one-day transfer bonuses. Initially they offered 100% transfer bonuses during Rent Day promos and later they offered up to 75% to 150% bonuses (depending upon your Bilt elite level). Again, I would have bet big money against any of that happening.

And now they’ve surprised us again with their Milestone Rewards. I would have bet that these Milestone Rewards would be, well, rewarding. I would have lost that bet too. Bilt’s Milestone Rewards are a big nothingburger (that’s my scientific assessment).

On a recent podcast, Nick and I asserted that the Bilt card isn’t just for renters anymore. Assuming Bilt’s amazing transfer bonuses continue, it has become a great card for many non-renters who play the points & miles game (see the full podcast for details about who it is and isn’t good for). In that podcast we mentioned that we didn’t yet know details about Milestone Rewards. We had high hopes for them, but our assessment of the Bilt program wasn’t at all based on those expectations. That’s good because Milestone Rewards ain’t “all that.”

The basic idea of Milestone Rewards is that you get to pick a reward when you earn 25,000 points, and every additional 25,000 points thereafter, within a calendar year. Some of the reward options, such as “2x at grocery stores for 30 days” or “2X on digital wallet purchases for 7 days”, look mildly interesting until you learn that they’re each capped at 1,000 bonus points. And they don’t stack. They don’t stack with each other (e.g. you can’t earn 4x at grocery stores by paying by digital wallet) and they don’t stack with Rent Day or other promotions.

Here’s the full list of Milestone Rewards:

  • Available to claim after earning 25k points, and again at 50K
    • Double points on Bilt Dining for 7 days (up to 1,000 bonus points)
    • 1,000 points for the Bilt Collection
    • 2X at grocery stores for 30 days with your Bilt card (up to 1,000 bonus points)
    • 2X at gas stations for 30 days with your Bilt card (up to 1,000 bonus points)
    • 2X on sports & concert tickets for 30 days with your Bilt card (up to 1,000 bonus points)
  • Available to claim after earning 75k points
    • All of the Milestone Rewards at prior Milestone
    • 10X on up to $25 spend with your next 3 Lyft rides
    • 2X on digital wallet purchases for 7 days with your Bilt card (up to 1,000 bonus points)
  • Available to claim after earning 100k points, and again at 125K
    • All of the Milestone Rewards at prior Milestone
    • Get 5,000 points closer to the next status
  • Available to claim after earning 150k points, and again at 175K and 200K
    • All of the Milestone Rewards at prior Milestone
    • $10 towards your next fitness class
  • Available to claim after earning 225k points
    • All of the Milestone Rewards at prior Milestone
    • 7,500 points for the Bilt Collection
  • Available to claim after earning 250k points, 275K, 300K, etc…
    • All of the Milestone Rewards at prior Milestone
    • 4X at grocery stores for 30 days with your Bilt card (up to 3,000 bonus points)
    • 4X at gas stations for 30 days with your Bilt card (up to 3,000 bonus points)

My Take

I find Milestone Rewards extremely unrewarding. There’s not enough upside to be worth going out of your way to earn 2x at grocery stores, to spend up to $25 on Lyft, etc. I mean sure I’ll pick a reward and hope I earn a few extra points, but I’m certainly not going to change my behavior to maximize it. And its clear that Bilt knew we’d be underwhelmed when they told us that these are “purely little sweeteners in-between status benefits.”

What’s that about status benefits? Bilt isn’t done with expanding their elite program. At some point, presumably soon, they’re going to tell us about new elite status benefits beyond Milestone Rewards. I bet these are going to be good…

Want to learn more about miles and points? Subscribe to email updates or check out our podcast on your favorite podcast platform.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

18 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments