November 11, 2015

Buy Alaska Miles at 50% Off

Alaska Airlines is selling miles at a pretty significant discount through 12/23/15.  The sale is actually a "mystery" sale where you enter your Mileage Plan number and either receive a 35%, 40%, or 50% offer.  My account was targeted for the 40% bonus which brings the cost (if you purchased the maximum 60,000 miles) down to 1.97 cents per mile.

While I wouldn't speculatively purchase a big chunk of Alaska miles, if you are looking to book a premium cabin award on either Cathay Pacific or Emirates, this would be a great way to top up your account.

I actually purchased a handful of Alaska miles during the last sale in order to top up my account and book our Emirates first class flights to the Maldives.  I booked those flights for 90,000 miles each way per person.  Through this promotion, you can get pretty close to that amount for $1,650 + tax.  While you are limited to 60,000 (used to be 40,000) miles per transaction, there's no limit to the number of transactions you can make.

If you (hypothetically) had 0 Alaska Mileage Plan miles and wanted a roundtrip Emirates first class ticket to the Maldives, that would cost you 180,000 total miles and about $40 in fees.  If you were targeted for the 50% bonus, you could make 2 transactions for a total of $3,546 and purchase the 180,000 miles needed for the roundtrip award.  While I certainly would prefer to earn miles in other ways, this approach would still dramatically reduce the cost of something VERY expensive.

Here's an example Emirates first class flight to the Maldives:

$3,546 is still a lot cheaper than nearly $22,000!!!!

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