Avianca LifeMiles Announces Changes to Domestic Award Prices in the United States
LifeMiles, the mileage program of Colombian-based airline Avianca, tops our list of the most undervalued airline loyalty programs for two reasons. First, it offers a number of hidden gems in the program and charges low fees, making it a fantastic way to book Lufthansa first class for cheap. Second, it's very easy to earn miles with the program as it's a transfer partner of Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One, Citi ThankYou Rewards and Marriott Bonvoy. They also sell discounted miles at attractive rates with some frequency.
While the program's international sweet spots aren't going anywhere (at least for now), the program is making some changes to its United States domestic award chart come July 15.
LifeMiles Award Chart Changes
Let's start with the good news first. Unlike with United, the award chart isn't said to be going away and the changes will only apply to domestic US awards, so you can breathe a little sigh of relief. Some awards will soon be slightly more expensive, meanwhile some will be cheaper and others will stay the same.
Presently, domestic economy awards (which would be booked on United) cost between 7,500 miles to 12,500 miles each direction plus a $25 booking fee depending on the zone in which the flight is categorized. On July 15, these awards will cost between 6,500 miles to 13,500 miles per direction plus a booking fee of $10 to $25.
The award chart on the LifeMiles website hasn't been updated to reflect the changes, but the announcement lists some examples of routes that will change in price.
Essentially, economy short-haul flights are becoming cheaper, meanwhile, transcontinental flights are becoming more expensive. No changes to premium cabin awards have been announced as these examples are economy award prices.
With United moving to dynamic pricing on its own award flights, it will sometimes make sense to book United operated domestic award flights via LifeMiles and sometimes directly with United. Once the LifeMiles changes are live, or a full award chart is revealed, we'll have a better sense of the full extent of the coming changes.