Went to the Southwest web site today to cash in some points. I do this every so often to keep my account active (which I found using points is not enough anymore you have to earn some too, but that's for another discussion).
Surprised that I could not use points for anything other than airfare right now, and even that is inflated over what I am used to seeing on my most taken route. Used to be able to redeem for gift cards, newspaper and magazine subscriptions, many different purchases. But no more.
Wondering if other airlines will follow in their attempts to reduce cash spending? I quickly looked but did not see any restrictions on other airlines I have miles/points with. Wondering if it might be a good idea to use up all the points/miles I can right now on merchandise just in case? And wondering what my million miles on United could get for me?