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If you aren’t up on airline award travel as a frequent flyer, or you’re just not someone who likes to be in the weeds of rewards, deciding when to use your points or miles for a flight versus paying in cash can feel overwhelming. There are several tools out there to help you make this decision, one of which—Points Path—now integrates directly with Google Flights.

Points Path currently searches award prices through American AAdvantage, Delta Air Lines SkyMiles, and United Airlines MileagePlus and compares them with cash fares (the company says more loyalty programs are being added in the coming weeks).

Points Path isn’t the only option for comparing rewards redemption to cash prices. We’ve written before about a similar tool,, which also searches for deals. At the moment, Roame is more robust in that it covers 16 airline loyalty programs and a handful of credit card reward systems (including Amex Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards) as well as points transfer recommendations. However, it does have some limitations, such as only pulling one-way fares, and is a separate search engine from Google Flights.

How to use Points Path

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To use Points Path, you’ll first need to install the browser extension. The service is currently only available on Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, though a Safari version is expected to launch in the future. Points Path requires you to provide your name and email address—and join their mailing list—through their website, after which they will send you a link to download the extension. (The extension does not come up in the Chrome Web Store search.) Click through the email to add the extension to your browser.

Next, navigate to Google Flights and search for your itinerary. The results will show the cash rate and then retrieve the award price for each flight, including miles and taxes/fees. You’ll also get a recommendation arrow for booking with cash vs. miles. If the airline isn’t covered by Points Path, or if an award seat isn’t available, that’ll be noted next to the specific flight.

google flights screenshot

Credit: Emily Long

From there, use Google Flights as normal, including filters. You can select the flights you want to build your itinerary, then click Continue under Booking options. Points Path’s step-by-step guide indicates that you’ll be redirected to their website first and then can click through to the airline, but when I searched, it took me straight to Delta (and American), auto-filled my specific search details, and returned the award ticket I’d selected for me to book.

Note that Points Path’s recommendations are based on the estimated value of airline miles, which keeps it simple for price comparison but leaves out other considerations, such as cancellation/change fees, mileage earning and redeposit policies, and cabin and fare limitations. So while you may pay less upfront for an award ticket, it may cost you more if you have to make any changes down the line. Make sure you know what you’re buying before you finalize your purchase.

Finally, while Points Path’s limited airline coverage may make it less useful for some travelers for now, it’s nice to have the integration with Google Flights versus a separate search engine.

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