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Saturday Recap: End Of Year Deals Roundup

Dec. 29, 2012
7 min read
Saturday Recap: End Of Year Deals Roundup
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Here’s a recap of the interesting points and miles news that are ending on December 31st, if not sooner:

American Express 35% Transfer Bonus to Virgin Atlantic: As a recap, American Express cardmembers who transfer Amex Membership Rewards points to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club will receive a 35% bonus until the end of the day today. The bonus is hard-coded into the transfer page, so you don't have to register or do anything special, just transfer miles as you normally would. Since Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles transfer to Hilton at a 2:1 ratio, this is a great way to make even more of those Amex points, which transfer to Hilton HHonors directly at a ratio of 1 Amex point to 1.5 HHonors points. With this promo, however, 1 Amex point = 1.35 Virgin miles = 2.7 HHonors points, 80% more than transferring directly from Amex.

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50% Buy Miles Bonus American Airlines Promotion: Generally buying miles isn't a great value, especially because they don't earn you elite status, but right now, American is holding a sale with a potential 50% bonus on purchased miles, making it something to consider if you're just a little bit short of an award redemption. The sale runs until December 31, 2012, and American Airlines has also raised the annual limit of miles you can purchase per account from 40,000 to 60,000, meaning you could end up with a total of 90,000 miles through this promotion for a total cost of $1,685 at a CPM of 1.87 cents. That still ends up being a healthy chunk of change to spend, but it's something to consider if you need miles in a hurry.

30% Off at Hilton and up to 5,000 Flying Blue Miles: Hilton has been teaming up with a lot of airlines lately to offer bonus miles based on stays, and the next one up is Flying Blue, the frequent flyer program of Air France/KLM. Now through December 31, 2012, when you book a stay through this promo page, not only will you get a discount of up to 30% off on your Hilton stay, but you'll earn additional miles when flying Air France and KLM per one-way flight when Flying Blue is selected as your preferred airline for earning Points and Miles.

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5% off all American Airlines Flights: Last month, I wrote about a 5% coupon code for American Airlines flights now through December 31, 2012. There don't seem to be any blackouts - neither Thanksgiving nor Christmas and the only conditions are that you must book on using the code 9612DD in the promo code box at checkout. The entire itinerary must be on American or American Eagle, so no codeshare or partner flights, and the 5% is taken off the base fare, not taxes or other fees. Still, if you are making last-minute New Year's plans, you could save a little extra cash.

500 Bonus Southwest Points: If you have a Southwest credit card like the personal or business Rapid Rewards Premier cards you can earn 500 bonus points when you make a purchase with it through the Rapid Rewards Shopping portal by December 31, 2012. Only one bonus per Rapid Rewards cardmember account. Shopping portals are a great way to earn bonus points on purchases anyway, so if you were going to buy something through Southwest’s portal, you might as well get even more of a bonus, and even if you weren’t but you have one of their credit cards, you could always try to find something super cheap to buy just to get the bonus.

If you were considering SkyClub membership (or renewing), might as well get some extra MQM's in the process.

1,500 Medallion Qualifying Miles with SkyClub Membership: Delta's Sky Club holiday promotion, where Medallion members receive an additional two months of Sky Club membership or 1,500 Medallion Qualifying Miles when they purchase or renew a one- or three-year club membership ends December 31, 2012. To get the additional 2 months free, use the promo code SC2MO. To get the 1,500 MQM’s toward elite status, include the promo code SCMQM when making your purchase.

Buy up to 10,000 Medallion Qualifying Miles: For those desperately trying to earn or maintain Medallion status, SkyMiles members have until December 31, 2012, to buy MQM's. Delta is selling Medallion Qualifying Miles, up to 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) that will post to your 2012 MQM balance and apply toward 2013 Medallion status (2012 qualification). They should post to your SkyMiles account within 24 hours. The prices for the MQM’s are: 2,500 MQMs for $395; 5,000 MQMs for $595; 7,500 MQMs for $795 or 10,000 MQMs for $995.

Win a trip on Lufthansa

Lufthansa Check-In Promotion: Now through December 31, 2012, Lufthansa is offering passengers who check-in for their flights online a chance to win roundtrip tickets to Europe. To be eligible to win, you must register with the confirmation number of an upcoming flight, then when you check-in you will be entered. The winner will receive two economy class roundtrip tickets on a Lufthansa-operated flight from any of the current U.S./Canadian gateways to any of the current Lufthansa European destinations.

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Bonus American AAdvantage Miles with Avis: Now through December 31, 2012, American and Avis have teamed up to offer customers 250 American Airlines AAdvantage bonus miles per day on their next Avis rental up to 1,000 miles per rentalusing coupon number MUAA013. Plus, Avis also offers a 35% discount to American Airlines flyers when they book using AWD #K817179. Bonus points can take 6 to 8 weeks to appear. Book here.

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1,000 Bonus American Miles and 30% Discount with Alamo: Now through December 31, 2012, save up to 30% and earn 1,000 American Airlines AAdvantage miles with a 3-day minimum rental on any size vehicle at participating Alamo locations in the United States and Canada. Use ID number 7015732 for the discount and be sure to provide your American Airlines AAdvantage number at the time of rental. Book here.

Triple JetBlue True Blue Points: For travel now through December 31, 2012, register to earn triple True Blue points on all JetBlue flights booked on and completed by the end of the year. You usually earn 3 points per dollar spent on JetBlue flights (base fare only), or 6 per dollar when you book on – so when you register for this offer, you get a total of 12 points per dollar, and there’s no limit to the number of flights this is valid for or points you can earn.

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5,000 Bonus Alaska Miles For Board Room Lounge Membership: When you enroll between now and December 31, 2012, you get 5,000 bonus miles and the airline will donate 2,500 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation – so at least there’s an upside to joining and you’re doing something charitable. Also unlike the other promos out there, this one is only good for new memberships, so renewals won’t count. New one-year memberships range from $250-$450 depending on whether this is a main account or a spouse account, and your elite status. While there are only 5 Alaska Board Rooms – in Anchorage, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Portland, membership also gives you access to over 50 affiliate lounges including domestic Delta SkyClub lounges. Find more info here.

British Airwyas 25% Hotel Transfer Bonus: Now through January, 13, 2013, British Airways is offering a 25% bonus when you transfer hotel points to the British Airways Avios program. British Airways hotel partners include Starwood, Club Carlson, Marriott, Hilton, Priority Club, Hyatt, and Shangri-La. To convert points to miles, head over to the hotel partner you want to transfer from and you will complete the transfer from the hotel site. There is no need to register for this promotion. The bonus Avios can take up to 4-6 weeks to post to your account. I calculated the value of each possible transfer here, but just as an example, For each Starpoint exchanged you will receive 1 Avios for a 1:1 transfer ratio, with a 5,000 Avios bonus per 20,000 points transferred.With this promo 20,000 SPG = 31,250 Avios.
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