We have decide to discontinue coverage of El Al’s Matmid Club. This is due to several reasons, detailed below. Furthermore, we’re assigning a semi-permanent value of $0.6307.
All Award Flights Begin or End in Tel Aviv
This makes comparing El Al’s availability to our hypothetical basket of currencies really tough.
So How Did we Arrive at $0.6307
Matmid points are like the Bitcoin of frequent flyer miles. They’re worth alot, but you also don’t earn them very easily. American Express Membership Rewards transfer at a rate of 50:1. So, one should divide the above figure by 50 to view them on the same scale as most other award miles. In order to value them, we went quick and dirty. As illustrated in the table below, we simply took a small sampling of available award seats, found the lowest cost cash alternative and did the math. Furthermore, we reduced the average by our estimate of how often we saw award seats. It’s the basic process that we’d use to value any other currency, just on a much smaller scale.
|Route||Class||Date||Points||Fees||Low Cost Cash||Redemption Value|
|BOS -> TLV||Business||3/1/2018||2150||$157.4||4338||$ 1.9445|
|BOS -> TLV||Econ||3/4/2018||450||$157.4||608||$ 1.0013|
|EWR -> TLV||Econ||3/5/2018||700||$157.4||1788||$ 2.3294|
|JFK -> TLV||Business||3/1/2018||2500||$157.4||2601||$ 0.9774|
|JFK -> TLV||First||3/1/2018||3500||$157.4||5303||$ 1.4702|
|LAX -> TLV||First||3/21/2018||3750||$157.4||6673||$ 1.7375|
|Matmid Point Value||$ 0.6307|
To put the results in some context that makes them more comparable to other award miles, lets divide the point value by 50(the Amex transfer ratio)…this provides us with a “normalized value” of $0.0126, decent.
Ultimately, we view El Al’s Matmid program as a low tier transfer option. Unless one is planing to fly from a US gateway to Tel Aviv, and is willing to be very flexible with their travel dates, look elsewhere.