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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – The Platinum Card® from American Express
LifeMiles, the mileage program of Colombian-based airline Avianca, frequently offers sales on discounted miles. But, the sales aren’t usually this good. Until November 12 at 11:59pm GMT-6 (which is Central Standard Time), targeted customers can buy LifeMiles with up to a 140% bonus.
As with most programs, the standard rate for buying LifeMiles isn’t necessarily a good deal, but if you maximize this sale the cost drops to just 1.375 cents per mile — which is a great deal compared to TPG’s valuation of 1.7 cents per LifeMile. Even if you don’t fly Avianca, LifeMiles can still provide excellent value since LifeMiles has made itself known by being the wholesaler of cheap Star Alliance miles and award tickets.
Here’s how this sale breaks down by purchase amount:
|Purchase Amount||Bonus||Purchase Amount|
|Buy 1,000 — 50,000 miles||115% bonus miles||1.535 cents per mile|
|Buy 51,000 — 100,000 miles||130% bonus miles||1.435 cents per mile|
|Buy 101,000 — 200,000 miles||140% bonus miles||1.375 cents per mile|
To see if you’re targeted, log in to your LifeMiles account here. If you’re targeted, you should see a Singles’ Day promo banner. You can also click on one of the suggested mileage purchase amounts to see if a bonus appears in the “Applicable Bonus” field on the right.
If you’ve already purchased LifeMiles this calendar year, be careful. The sale’s terms and conditions state that “the maximum miles that a member can receive during the promotion, including applicable bonuses is 480,000 miles, minus the miles that the member has previously purchased in 2018 and their respective bonuses.”
Should I Buy LifeMiles?
LifeMiles is first on TPG‘s list of most undervalued airline loyalty programs due to its many hidden gems and low taxes and fees. Plus, LifeMiles doesn’t pass along carrier surcharges. Here are a few examples of what you can book with LifeMiles and the cost of the miles required for these redemptions if purchased during this sale:
|Award||LifeMiles||Cost to Purchase (in 1,000 increments)||Cost if Purchased at Maximized 1.375 Cent Rate|
|United domestic in economy||7,500 miles||$123||$110|
|United transcontinental in lie-flat business||25,000 miles||$384||$344|
|Flights to South of South America in economy||30,000 miles||$461||$413|
|Flights to New Zealand or Australia in economy||40,000 miles||$614||$550|
|Flights to Europe in business class (with no fuel surcharges)||63,000 miles||$904||$866|
|Flights to North Asia in business class||75,000 miles||$1,076||$1,031|
|Flights to Middle East in business class||78,000 miles||$1,119||$1,073|
|Flights to Europe in Lufthansa first (with no fuel surcharges)||87,000 miles||$1,248||$1,196|
It’s generally not a good idea to purchase miles speculatively. But, if you have an upcoming trip where these miles could be used, this could be a good opportunity to buy miles at a very discounted rate.
LifeMiles purchases are processed directly by Avianca, so you’ll want to use a credit card with a travel or airfare bonus category to purchase the miles. Two great cards to use would be The Platinum Card® from American Express, which should earn 5 Amex Membership Rewards points per dollar spent for a return of 9.5%, or the Chase Sapphire Reserve, which should earn 3 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent for a return of 6%.
If you’re not targeted for this sale but you still need LifeMiles for a redemption, you could buy LifeMiles through the Club LifeMiles subscription plan, transfer Citi ThankYou Points to LifeMiles at a 1:1 ratio, transfer Amex Membership Rewards points to LifeMiles at a 1:1 ratio or hope that LifeMiles offers another Cyber Week sale this year.
H/T: Loyalty Lobby
Featured photo of Lufthansa 747-8 business class on the lower deck by Alberto Riva / The Points Guy.
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