Hardly a day goes by when I don’t talk to a business traveler who proudly boasts of the cache of frequent-flier miles he or she has squirreled away. The stash, they tell me, is always “banked” for serial visits to faraway resorts or a retirement fueled by free flights and flights of fancy.

I tell them what I tell you: Spend the miles. Now. Stop “banking” miles for fantasy holidays that may never materialize or a retirement that can’t possibly be filled with flying freebies.

I have a sound bite, one I pull out whenever a radio or television show wants snappy patter about frequency-plan foibles. “Airlines,” I say gravely, “do lousy jobs being airlines. Why would you think they are good banks?”

Tags: loyalty