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As I first wrote about in early May, Alaska Mileage Plan is presently offering their biggest ever bonus on purchased miles. I figured I’d post a reminder about this, since Alaska’s 50% bonus on purchased miles expires tomorrow, Monday, June 13, 2016. I’d note that the offer is technically targeted, though in practice many accounts seem to be eligible for the offer.
Details of Alaska’s 50% bonus on purchased miles
If you are eligible for the offer, the bonus is tiered, as follows:
- Buy 10,000-19,000 miles, get a 20% bonus
- Buy 20,000-49,000 miles, get a 35% bonus
- Buy 50,000-60,000 miles, get a 50% bonus
If you buy miles with a 50% bonus you’ll end up paying ~1.97 cents per mile, which is pretty darn good. For example, 75,000 miles will cost you $1,478.13.
While the maximum number of miles you can purchase per transaction is 60,000 pre-bonus, you can buy as many sets of miles as you’d like. So you could buy a million miles if you wanted to, for example.
Alaska mileage purchases are processed by points.com, meaning they don’t count as airfare spend for the purposes of your credit card. If you buy miles you’ll want to use a card which maximizes your return on everyday, non-bonused spend, like the Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card, Chase Freedom Unlimited Card, Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express, etc.
Redeem Alaska miles for Hainan Airlines business class
Why you should buy Alaska miles for under two cents each
Last year I wrote a post entitled “6 Reasons Buying Alaska Miles Is A Good Deal.” Check out that post for full details, though just to summarize, here are some of the things which make Mileage Plan miles so valuable:
- You’re allowed a free stopover, even on a one-way award
- Mileage Plan has generous change & cancellation policies (up until 60 days before departure you can change and redeposit your award for free, and within that timeframe the cost is $125 per person)
- There’s no limit to how many miles you can buy per promotion, so this is great for people just getting started in the hobby (you can buy up to 60,000 miles pre-bonus per transaction, but can make as many transactions as you’d like)
- Alaska has some unique airline partners, like Fiji Airways, Hainan Airlines, Icelandair, etc.
- Alaska miles are especially useful for travel in Cathay Pacific business class, where there are often five business class seats available per flight; the ability to do a “free” stopover in Hong Kong enroute to elsewhere is awesome as well
- Now that American greatly devalued first class redemptions on partner airlines, redeeming Alaska miles for Cathay Pacific first class is the best way to book that award
- Redemption rates in Emirates business class are excellent, which is a great way to get to many regions, including India, Africa, Asia, etc.
Examples of great uses of Mileage Plan miles
To give a few examples of some of the great uses of Mileage Plan miles (all of which allow stopovers on one way awards):
- Cathay Pacific first class from the US to Asia for 70,000 miles
- Cathay Pacific business class from the US to Australia for 60,000 miles
- LAN business class from the US to South America for 45,000 miles
- Hainan business class from the US to Asia for 50,000 miles
- Fiji Airways business class from the US to Australia/New Zealand for 55,000 miles
- Icelandair business class from the US to Europe for 55,000 miles
- Korean Air business class from the US to Southeast Asia for 60,000 miles (roundtrip required)
Alaska miles are the best way to redeem for Cathay Pacific first class
On a per mile basis, Alaska Mileage Plan miles remain the single most valuable mileage currency out there. We’ve never seen a better offer on the purchase of Mileage Plan miles than this, so this is a great opportunity if you’d have a use for these miles.
Mileage Plan miles are especially valuable since you can buy as many as you want, and also because you can do a stopover on a one-way award, which very few frequent flyer programs allow. Buying 70,000 miles for a redemption in Cathay Pacific first class to anywhere in Asia, the Middle East, or India, for under $1,400 and getting a stopover in Hong Kong in the process is tough to beat.
There are lots of other good values as well, like travel to Asia on Hainan with a stopover in Beijing, travel to New Zealand on Fiji Airways with a stopover in Fiji, etc.
Do you plan on purchasing Alaska miles with up to a 50% bonus before the offer expires?
Non-Affiliate Product Disclaimer: The information for the AmEx Everyday Preferred has been collected independently by One Mile At A Time. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.