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United is offering MileagePlus members the opportunity to purchase miles at a discount — but the exact discount you’ll get is a mystery.
To see your United mystery miles offer, head to the promotion’s landing page, click the Reveal My Offer button and sign in to your account. You’ll then be directed to your personalized offer. Note that for all members, regardless of specific offer, the mystery miles promotion ends on May 24, 2018, at 11:59pm CT.
TPG staffers have reported getting offers ranging from a 100% bonus to a 60% bonus, including a 75% offer. Of course, some are better than others. For example, I was targeted to get up to 60% bonus miles with this promotion, broken down into the following tiers:
- Buy 5,000-14,000 miles, get 35% bonus
- Buy 15,000-29,000 miles, get 40% bonus
- Buy 30,000-93,000 miles, get 60% bonus
If I were to maximize the promotion and purchase 93,000 miles, I’d pay $3,499, including taxes and fees, for a total of 148,800 miles. That comes out to about 2.35 cents apiece. Based on TPG’s most recent valuations, United miles are worth 1.4 cents apiece.
However, if you were targeted for the 100% bonus, it could make more sense. If you were to max out that offer and purchase 75,000 miles (and get a 75,000-mile bonus) for $2,821 including taxes, you’d be getting a favorable value of 1.88 cents apiece — the best-ever offering from United when purchasing miles.
It’ll be worth checking this mystery miles promotion to see if you were targeted for an enticing offer. Of course, if you’re close to a redemption or have something specific in mind, it could make sense to take advantage. Keep in mind also that the usual restrictions for purchasing United miles apply to this promotion, including the following:
- You must purchase at least 2,000 miles. Miles may be purchased in increments of 1,000 miles.
- Members can only purchase 150,000 miles per account per calendar year, and bonus miles count toward the 150,000 mile annual limit.
- Miles may take up to 48 hours to post to your account.
- Purchased or gifted miles do not count toward MileagePlus Premier status.
Note that the purchase is processed by Points.com, so you won’t get any travel category bonuses from this purchase. Make sure to use the best non-bonus category credit card for your situation. Based on TPG’s valuations, the Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express’s 2x Membership Rewards or Chase Freedom Unlimited’s 1.5x Ultimate Rewards points would be the most rewarding choice.
With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 50,000 point sign up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® named a 'Best Travel Credit Card' by MONEY® Magazine, 2016-2017
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel.
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards