In the interest of full disclosure, One Mile At A Time earns a referral bonus for anyone that’s approved through some of the below links. These are the best publicly available offers that we have found for each card. Please check out our advertiser policy for further details about the partners we work with. Thanks for your support!
At the moment Aeromexico has some great business class fares for travel between Mexico and Asia. The reason I’m calling these out isn’t because they’re that exceptional as such for someone who doesn’t care about miles, but rather because they’re phenomenal if you’re trying to earn Delta Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQMs) and Medallion Qualifying Dollars (MQDs).
That’s because paid business class travel on Aeromexico that’s credited to SkyMiles earns 200% redeemable miles, 200% MQMs, and MQDs for 40% of the distance flown.
So, how good are these fares? For ~$2,300 roundtrip you can fly from Mexico City to Tokyo Narita, which covers a flown distance of 14,000 miles. That means you’d earn 28,000 redeemable miles (not including any elite bonuses), 28,000 MQMs, and 5,600 MQDs (that’s about 2.5x the normal amount).
For roughly the same fare you can fly from Cancun to Seoul Incheon, which covers a flown distance of 16,500 miles. That means you’d earn 33,000 redeemable miles (not including any elite bonuses), 33,000 MQMs, and 6,600 MQDs (that’s about 3x the normal amount).
These fares have tons of availability, and you can travel between now and October for both fares, which gives you a big window for travel. Your best bet for searching these fares is Google Flights or ITA Matrix.
Unfortunately the longhaul flights are operated by Aeromexico’s 787-8s, featuring B/E Aerospace Diamond seats in business class, which I’ve reviewed before. I say “unfortunately” because I’d jump on this in a heartbeat if the flights were operated by 787-9s, featuring reverse herringbone seats in business class.
As I said at the beginning of this post, the Delta SkyMiles revenue requirement for status is a big consideration for people. Depending on the status level you’re going for, you need to earn anywhere between 3,000 and 15,000 MQDs per year, in addition to the mileage or segment requirement.
It used to be that you could waive the revenue requirement by spending just $25,000 per year on a co-branded Delta credit card. However, as of this year the credit card spend requirement for Diamond members has been increased ten-fold, meaning that you need to spend $250,000 rather than $25,000 on a co-branded Delta credit card to waive the revenue requirement. That’s something that many people can’t do, so as a result they’re having to find other creative ways to achieve spend requirements, which is where fares like this come into the equation.
With these fares you can earn MQDs at three times the usual rate, meaning that proportionally it’s the same as achieving Diamond by only spending $5,000 rather than $15,000.
If you do book one of these tickets and have access to US credit cards, make sure you maximize the points you earn. The Platinum Card® from American Express offers 5x points on airfare purchased directly with airlines, which is a great option if you’re booking directly with the airline. Meanwhile the Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card offers triple points on airfare purchases, and also offers fantastic travel coverage in the event of irregular operations.
Hopefully some of you can take advantage of these great fares.
(Tip of the hat to qupasyd)