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US Airways (convert to American) and Miles & More ‘buy miles’ bonuses – any good?

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Two new ‘buy miles’ promotions have launched in the last couple of days.

The first, with a novel format, is from US Airways.

It is offering a mystery bonus.  You will receive a bonus of either 25%, 50%, 75% or 100% of your miles.  Luckily, you are told (once you have logged in via this page) what bonus you will get before you need to commit!

US Airways buy miles

The key thing to remember is that US Airways has now merged with American Airlines.  At some point during 2014, you will be able to convert your US Airways miles into AA miles.  You may therefore see this promotion as a cheap way of buying American Airlines miles, assuming you don’t need them immediately.

Assuming you get the 100% bonus and buy the maximum 50,000, you will be paying $1,881 for 100,000 miles, so 1.8c each.

This post explains the ‘sweet spots’ in the American Airlines award chart.  However, as it may be another year before your US Airways miles merge with AA, it would be a little risky to place a bet on the AA chart remaining unchanged.  Of course, as US Airways is still a Star Alliance member until 30th March, you may see this as a way of booking a cheap Star Alliance redemption instead.

The deadline is March 26th.

Secondly, the Lufthansa deal.

Until the end of March, Lufthansa is offering a 20% bonus when you purchase Miles & More miles.

You can only buy up to 12,000 Miles & More miles per year, so this promotion is only useful if you are topping off your account to reach the amount you need for a reward.  Given that Lufthansa is not a American Express partner, this may be a convenient way of getting the miles you need.

(Technically, you could convert from Amex to Starwood Preferred Guest to Miles & More.  The conversion rate of 0.5 M&M per Amex point is poor, though.  It would rise to 0.625 M&M per Amex point if you converted 40,000 Membership Rewards at a time.)

Comments (19)

  • Ian says:

    It’s a pity these US Airways promotions are disappearing…

    Their various promos over recent times allowed me acrue 150,000 miles at about $0.14 or £0.085 each.

    This meant I had enough miles for Paris – Frankfurt (Biz) – Incheon (First) – Tokyo (Biz) – Sydney (Biz) – Bangkok (First) – Paris (First) for about £1500 + £174 taxes. Superb availability, and all with lovely Asiana and Thai service.

    • bacx says:

      Ian did you use a uk credit card to buy these points? I have had some trouble recently using my uk card on

      • Rob says:

        Seems to be an issue with certain programmes eg Alaska. handle all of BA’s ‘buy points’ transactions – and Virgin – so it can’t be widespread.

  • Shadowfixer says:

    If the US Airways are valued at 1.8c per point (assuming you get the 100% bonus), and Avois are valued roughly at 1p per point; what makes this a good deal…. Am I missing something?

    • Ian says:

      Only the fact that you can buy them and have them immediately. Star awards are bookable until 30th March, with very good availability, so it can make sense for some.

      I wouldn’t be buying them for use on AA though.

    • John says:

      Yes, you are purchasing US miles at 1.8c each, whereas you cannot buy Avios (directly) for 1p each

      If US miles become AA miles and there is no AA devaluation, they may become more valuable

      • Iheartarbitrage says:

        Where can you buy avios indirect for 1p?

        • Rob says:

          The Tesco life insurance deal (reminder post tomorrow) gets you 12,000 for 0.5p. Quite a few Tesco bonus point deals mean you effectively buy Avios for under 1p even if you bin the item you bought.

    • Rob says:

      No fuel surcharges on AA redemptions for a start, except on BA. London to NYC on an AA plane in Business would be £350 cheaper.

  • N says:

    I thought I would sign up to US Airways to see what was on offer, but I get “The US Airways Dividend Miles account you specified is not eligible to purchase miles.”

    Has anyone got the “buy miles” T’s&C’s?

    • Rob says:

      I think there is a 10 day rule on new accounts before they can buy? Something like that.

  • idrive says:

    sorry for the OT, practically, once US has gone from Star Alliance, the only way will be UNITED, for US based flights, right? has anyone been successful with the NYT subscription from Asia region?

  • Tom says:

    Not quite on topic, but I am wondering if I will be able to add by BAEC number to a US Airways booking to collect avios and tier points from the end of this month? I’m looking to do a trip LHR->SFO->JFK->LHR which prices very nicely on US Airways, but would only want to do that if I was going to earn TPs and avios.. any ideas? I can’t seem to find much online that confirms this and states what the earning rates are…

    • Rob says:

      You can earn from 31 March. Table not out yet I think.

      • Tom says:

        Do you think it is likely to mirror the AA one?

        • Alan says:

          Seems very likely given they’re all running with AA codeshare numbers and over time the two will be integrated. That’s certainly my hope as I have a TP run to HNL planned on US that I’m hoping will earn about 1120 TPs 😛