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You can currently buy points and miles with up to a 155% bonus — but should you?

Nov. 14, 2022
10 min read
Downtown Proper
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Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with the latest promotions.


Loyalty programs are a huge moneymaker for airlines and hotel companies — in large part because they have so many revenue streams. One of these revenue streams is selling airline miles and hotel points at a discount or with a bonus.

Selling points or miles gives the seller an immediate cash injection, as travelers are essentially prepaying for future travel at a potential discount.

This guide walks you through some of the best current sales on airline miles and hotel points, including some that may be targeted. But first, let’s discuss when it makes sense to buy points and miles.

Should I buy points and miles now?

ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY

There are a couple of things to consider before taking advantage of these sales.

The first is that buying points and miles only makes sense for certain travelers. It’s generally a much better deal to earn points and miles for “free” through welcome bonuses on top travel rewards credit cards.

However, buying points and miles during good promotions can make sense for those who have tapped out their credit card options and can get high value from their points and miles. That said, we only recommend buying points or miles when you have an immediate plan to use them. Otherwise, you’re left open to unexpected devaluations.

With that out of the way, here are the promotions for buying points and miles that are currently available.

Related: How I saved thousands of dollars on travel by buying 310,000 points

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Promotions for buying airline miles

Avianca LifeMiles

  • Current promotion: Up to a 155% bonus.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 1.29 cents per mile.
  • TPG valuation: 1.7 cents per mile.
  • Ending date: Nov. 15.
  • Link to buy miles.

Through Nov. 15, you can purchase Avianca LifeMiles with a 155% bonus when you register on this page. You'll get the highest bonus when you purchase at least 51,000 LifeMiles.

This sale drops the price to as low as 1.29 cents per mile, which is lower than TPG's 1.7-cents-per-point valuation and can be an excellent way to book Star Alliance tickets at a discount. For example, a one-way business-class flight costs 63,000 LifeMiles, bringing the cost to $812.70 before factoring in award ticket taxes and fees. Better yet, LifeMiles doesn't pass along fuel surcharges when you book tickets operated by Austrian, Lufthansa and other airlines that typically add high surcharges to award tickets.

Verdict: Great way to purchase Star Alliance award flights at a discount.

American AAdvantage

  • Current promotion: Up to a 35% discount.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 2.4 cents per mile.
  • TPG valuation: 1.77 cents per mile.
  • Ending date: TBD.
  • Link to buy miles.

American Airlines AAdvantage is offering up to a 35% discount on miles. You’ll get the highest discount when you buy 150,000 miles, dropping the price to 2.4 cents per mile. This is significantly higher than TPG’s valuation of American miles but could still be a good deal for specific high-end awards.

Verdict: It can be a decent deal if you expect to redeem your miles for expensive, premium-cabin travel.

United MileagePlus

  • Current promotion: Up to an 85% bonus.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 2.03 cents per mile.
  • TPG valuation: 1.21 cents per mile.
  • Ending date: Nov. 20.
  • Link to buy miles.

United is selling MileagePlus miles with up to an 85% bonus when you purchase at least 40,000 miles. This is less impressive than United’s 100% bonus available earlier this year to most MileagePlus members. When you buy a smaller number of miles, the bonus is smaller. While there are rarities when you can redeem MileagePlus miles at 5 cents apiece, United is selling its miles at a significantly higher cost than TPG’s valuation.

Verdict: It might be worthwhile for a specific high-end redemption.

JetBlue TrueBlue

  • Current promotion: Up to a 50% bonus.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 1.97 cents per point.
  • TPG valuation: 1.3 cents per point.
  • Ending date: Nov. 22.
  • Link to buy points.

The current promotion for those looking to purchase JetBlue TrueBlue points isn’t too exciting. When you purchase at least 40,000 points, you’ll unlock a 50% bonus. When you buy fewer points, smaller bonuses are available. Since JetBlue uses dynamic pricing for its flights, getting more than 1.3 cents per point is hard. And unfortunately, the purchase rate is significantly higher than 1.3 cents per point.

Verdict: Skip unless you’re buying extra points to get to a specific redemption.

Southwest Rapid Rewards

  • Current promotion: Up to a 45% discount.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 1.65 cents per point.
  • TPG valuation: 1.5 cents per point.
  • Ending date: Nov. 22.
  • Link to buy points.

Southwest Rapid Rewards is selling its points with up to a 45% discount. The highest discount kicks in when you buy at least 15,000 points, bringing the purchase rate to 1.65 cents. While that’s close to TPG’s valuation, Southwest ties its award rates to paid rates, so getting more than 1.5 cents per point isn’t easy.

Verdict: Pass unless you’re topping off your account. Consider taking advantage of one of the boosted Southwest credit card offers instead.

Air Canada Aeroplan

  • Current promotion: Up to a 110% discount.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 1.65 cents per point.
  • TPG valuation: 1.5 cents per point.
  • Ending date: Nov. 28.
  • Link to buy points.

Air Canada is offering a 110% bonus on points purchased by Nov. 28. You must purchase 90,000 points to receive the full bonus, with smaller purchases earning a lower bonus. This drops the price to 1.25 cents apiece and is lower than TPG's valuation of 1.5 cents per point. This can be a great way to purchase Star Alliance tickets at a discount, but do the math to see if you'll save money over purchasing a ticket outright.

This bonus is targeted, so you may have an offer higher or lower than 110%. Additionally, Air Canada will charge your card in Canadian dollars, so pay with a credit card that does not add foreign transaction fees.

Verdict: Good deal for buying Star Alliance award tickets at a discount.

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

  • Current promotion: Up to a 50% bonus.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 1.97 cents per mile.
  • TPG valuation: 1.8 cents per mile.
  • Ending date: Dec. 23.
  • Link to buy miles.

Alaska Airlines is offering up to a 50% bonus on miles purchases by Dec. 23. You'll get the highest bonus when you purchase at least 30,000 miles, which drops the cost to 1.97 cents per point after taxes. This isn't the best deal we've seen on Alaska miles but it could be worthwhile if you need to top up your account or have another immediate redemption in mind. Just note that Alaska has hinted at program changes which could devalue partner bookings.

Verdict: Can be a good way to purchase partner award tickets at a discount, but do the math first.

Promotions for buying hotel points

The Punta Cana coastline in the Dominican Republic. PRETO PEROLA/SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

Hilton Honors

  • Current promotion: Up to a 100% bonus.
  • Purchase rate: As low as 0.5 cents per point.
  • TPG valuation: 0.6 cents per point.
  • Ending date: Nov. 22.
  • Link to buy points.

Hilton Honors is giving its members up to a 100% bonus when they purchase more than 5,000 Hilton Honors points by Nov. 22. This brings the purchase rate below our valuation of Hilton Honors points. For 120,000 points (purchasable for $600), you can spend a night in a king lagoon-view suite at the Conrad Bora Bora Nui, a room that usually sells for $1,456.99 per night.

Verdict: It is worth comparing cash and award prices on your next Hilton stay.

World of Hyatt

World of Hyatt is a favorite of the TPG team for having the most valuable hotel points. When you buy at least 5,000 points through Nov. 28, you’ll unlock a 25% bonus. Earlier this year, we saw a more intriguing promotion for Hyatt that allowed members to buy points for just 1.68 cents apiece. Still, this promotion could be worthwhile, particularly since Hyatt waives resort fees when redeeming points.

Verdict: Even with the high purchase rate, it could be worthwhile, especially if you want to dodge resort fees.

Marriott Bonvoy

You can buy Marriott Bonvoy points with a 25% discount through Dec. 20. The discount kicks in when you purchase at least 2,000 points and drops your per-point price to 0.94 cents. This is above our valuation but could still save you money on select high-end stays.

Verdict: It could be worth checking out for booking expensive stays at a discount.

Which credit card should you use to buy miles?

Most of these promotions are processed through Points.com rather than directly by the hotel or airline. Unfortunately, that means you won’t usually get bonus rewards with a travel category bonus card.

Instead, go for a card that offers a solid return on non-bonus spending. Remember that you may face foreign transaction fees on some cards when buying points or miles from a program located abroad. As such, you may want to use one of the following cards:

If you’re working toward a credit card spending requirement, using that card may be the way to go. For additional suggestions, check out our guide to the best cards for everyday spending.

The main exception to this rule is American Airlines. The airline reportedly codes mileage purchases as airfare, so you may want to use a credit card that earns bonus miles on airfare for the highest returns when buying AAdvantage miles.

Related: The best credit cards for buying points and miles

Additional reporting by Kyle Olsen, Benji Stawski and Katie Genter.

Featured image by MELANIE LIEBERMAN/THE POINTS GUY
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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How we chose these cards

Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
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TPG featured card

Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023