US Airways offering a 50% discount on the purchase of miles through January 31, 2012

US Airways is offering a 50% discount on one transaction for the purchase of Dividend Miles through January 31, 2012. This offer seems to only be available to those that purchased or gifted miles last year. Through this promotion you can purchase a maximum of 50,000 miles for approximately 1.87 cents each.

Usually they offer a 100% bonus on purchased miles, which makes the per mile cost the same. The difference is that this promotion greatly limits the number of miles you can purchase. In the past you could purchase up to 50,000 miles and receive a 100% bonus. The last time they offered this promotion they limited the bonus to 40,000 purchased miles (for a total of 80,000 miles). And this time they’re limiting the bonus to 50,000 purchased miles. So since it’s a 50% discount instead of a 100% bonus, that’s the maximum value you can get out of this promotion.

US Airways’ strategy is pretty clear here. They like making money off of selling miles, but they don’t want you to be able to purchase enough miles to book an international premium cabin ticket. Add that to the fact that they recently raised the cost of purchased miles to 3.5 cents each, and this deal isn’t as good as it used to be.

Comments

  1. IMO now that purchased miles are 3.5c each before any promos, the miles purchases are now bad until they reach a 125% bonus or a 60% discount (those both work out to 1.4c per mile which still isn’t great).

  2. @ Will — Since they seem to be limiting the number of miles that can be purchased per promotion, I’d say buy now, since you can always take advantage of the next promotion as well.

    @ Ryan — Depends how you look at it. At 1.8 cents per mile I’d be paying under $2,200 for a first class ticket to Asia via Europe, which is an absolute bargain in my book.

  3. I have no status with USAirways but have purchased so many miles and have been lucky enough to fly F and C class on many routes. As an AP Elite — keeping status is hard now due to the increase in mileage needed and the aerolotto of waiting to be upgraded.
    I will continue to buy USAirways miles — for me they have been wonderful and fuel surcharges have been 75% less than Air Canada’s Aeroplan!

  4. Only buy and not share:

    Get 50% OFF your Purchase of Dividend Miles

    Thank you for buying, sharing or gifting Dividend Miles in 2011!

    We’d like to help you earn more miles this year. Enjoy 50% savings
    when you buy Dividend Miles before January 31, 2012.

    This exclusive offer is just for you* and you can only get it here:

  5. I would only buy if I need to top up for a redemption because:
    1) Miles are more expensive
    2) US DM devaluation….

  6. I bought 50k miles in 2011 but didn’t get an email with the offer. So I logged into US Air and saw that I was suddenly a silver preferred member! I ended 2011 with 18,500 DPM so any ideas why I was made silver? Not that I’m complaining…

  7. Never mind. I just got the email for 25% off one mile purchase before 1/31. Still no clue why they upgraded me to silver though!

  8. My US Airway account shows 0% discount for buying miles. However, I can use Lucky’s link for the 50% discount.

  9. @ Lars — Whoops, misread the offer, it’s for the purchase of miles only.

    @ jason — It seems they’re still sending the emails out, so be patient.

  10. Stranger yet, an hour after I got the 25% off offer email I received an email with a 50% off offer…

  11. Just like Rebecca, about an hour and a half after receiving my 25% off email, I received the 50% off one. Airline IT at its best.

  12. Unfortunately, even when I click on the 50% off link I still get the 25% off price. The first page from the 50% off link lists the 50% off promo but when I fill out the form and go to the second page its lists the 25% off again. Annoying.

  13. Hi Lucky

    Is this worth doing for people outside the US? I live in Japan, so have lots of nice *A opportunities, but is the booking process going to be too much of a pain from here?

  14. @ sendaiben — Absolutely, there are a ton of options out of Asia whether you’re going to the US, Europe, or Australia, with plenty of availability. I’d definitely go for it.

  15. @Lucky, actually last year I purchased 40K miles and expected to get 40K bonus, but I ended up getting 50K bonus miles? Not complaining however….I did get the 50% off mail and when logging in I also get the actual 50% discount. Will be buying the miles, living in Australia Thai Airways has great availability in First class to Europe (where I am from).

  16. Crap, just bought miles 2 days ago to top off an award to Beijing, Hong Kong, and Bangkok. Oh well, still only paid $300 for the trip because of Biscoff cookies and super shuttle rides in Phoenix.

  17. Would you say it’s worth buying if it makes the difference between two business class tickets to Asia up to first class tickets? Sitting on 240k now, so 40k more would be 2 tix f/c to Asia, right?

  18. I was reminded today why I never fly US Air anymore and why I will go out of my way to avoid the Dividend Miles program. I tried to buy miles in December (for my mom, who wants to use 80K to go to the middle east and back and is 20k short) using the US Air portal/points.com and the 100 % bonus promotion. It looked like it went through, but the miles never posted. I tried callling Dividend Miles but the 45 min. wait time I was quoted was too much. Yes, I should have called back but it was the holidays and I never did. So I was surprised when I got the targeted email regarding buying miles in January for 50% off the other day. I thought it was my lucky day! So the link looked like it was working and then right when I was about to buy it said “you already took advantage of this promotion” and didn’t let me buy the miles at the discount.

    I called Dividend Miles, determined to wait (and wait I did – about 35 minutes, which, for a 1K on United used to the elite line, felt like an eternity). I got a rep who basically said, after 20 min of a runaround, that I did not qualify for the Jan promotion (since the miles I thought I bought in Dec didn’t go through) and that I was ineligible. She didn’t understand that they got it wrong in December and likened me calling now to me calling a month after seeing a fare and asking for that fare. I asked for a supervisor and got the “you have to wait 24 hours for a callback” run around. I was incredulous at that statement, and I asked if she could look for a supervisor for me to speak with. She put me on hold for another 30 min. and said that she could connect me. Then, she left the call. The woman she connected me to was in RESERVATIONS in Chapel Hill and could do nothing to help me. Then, I thought, OK, let’s see if I can work with her to at least extend my hold on the reservation I made for my mom 2 days ago. She said she was not the right person for me and then routed me once again to someone else. 30 min later, an agent came on the line from Dividend Miles and I explained the situation again (though I thought I was supposed to be connected to someone in intl reservations?). She basically raised her voice and said there was nothing she was willing to do but that she would have a Supervisor call me within 24 hours. I told her I didn’t have 24 hours – the reservation was about to expire. Unbelievable! She could do nothing, so I gave her a piece of my mind about how United should have acquired US Air years ago!

    Now I’m on hold with US Air reservations, desperately trying to extend the hold time. In the end, I’ll likely bite the bullet, pay $700 for the miles, and get this nightmare overwith. But I was reminded why I do not fly US Air and hate Dividend Miles.

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