Everyone’s favourite FFP, Lifemiles, has announced its latest mile selling promotion. From now until 30 Sept, purchases of Lifemiles will accrue a variable bonus, depending on the amount you buy. Note that this different from the usual promotion, where the bonus you get is fixed.
The chart above looks pretty sweet, but it gets better. Apparently, registering your FFP number here gets you a bonus 10% miles on top of whatever you buy. That said, the terms and conditions say you need to register by 8th Sept to enjoy this. It doesn’t hurt to try though. It accepted my registration on the 9th, but you shouldn’t view this as a guaranteed bonus. If you get it, great, but don’t factor it into your calculations.
The cost per mile can be summarised as such (remember that you pay $33 for 1,000 miles). I’ve only taken the published bonus into account below and not the 10% mentioned above.
|Purchase quantity||Obtained quantity||Cost per mile (USD)|
Obviously, the more miles you buy, the better the deal. 1.4 cents per mile is good value ASSUMING you already have an intended use in mind for the miles. I would strongly advise against buying speculatively, given the potential for devaluations.
Also, the USD has appreciated quite a bit vis a vie the SGD in recent months, so that’s something else you want to factor into your calculations. The usual caveats about Lifemiles apply- you cannot book SQ premium cabin space except on short/medium haul flights, Lufthansa is blocking First class award availability, cancellations cost US$50 and about 40 mins of your time with customer service, you cannot do mixed class bookings. Remember that the maximum Lifemiles you can buy each year (including bonuses) is 360,000 (they increased the cap for this promotion).
But, remember that a one-way ticket from SIN-SFO costs 78,000 miles on Lifemiles (and lets you experience EVA Air’s quite excellent business class), and that Lifemiles does not charge fuel surcharges. So there is potentially some excellent value to be found here if you’re ok with booking far in advance/very close to departure and can put up with some inconvenience.
So, what do you guys think?
EDIT: I’ve been reminded that there’s still the bonus miles you’ll earn on your credit card for this purchase. This transaction will code as Avianca, meaning that if you’re using the DBS Altitude AMEX card and you’re within your first 6 months, you’ll earn 4.5 miles for every S$1 spent. You can’t combine Lifemiles and Krisflyer to do a redemption, obviously, but consider this a bonus.
EDIT EDIT: To summarise what you can’t do with Lifemiles
- Book SQ premium cabin space on their latest products (except in rare, rare instances)
- Book mixed cabin awards (eg fly J on one leg, F on another. If you want to fly F you need to make sure the flight you pick has F throughout)
- Book a stopover
- Make online changes to your booking (change fees via call centre are $150, it is actually cheaper to cancel for $50 and rebook)