Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

10,000 extra bonus miles with the Miles & More credit card

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

Lufthansa and MBNA have brought back a decent sign-up bonus for the Miles & More credit card.

Normally the bonus is a dull 1,500 miles.  However, until 30th May, you will receive 11,500 miles.


These are paid in two instalments:

1,500 miles with your first purchase (as per normal)

10,000 miles when you spend £1,000 within 90 days

The cards come as a double-pack with an Amex and a Visa.  The earnings rate is surprisingly good – 1.5 Miles & More miles per £1 on the Amex and 0.75 miles per £1 on the Visa.

You also receive a 33% miles bonus on ALL your spending for the first six months, on both cards.  This takes the Amex up to 2 miles per £1, a very impressive earnings rate for a free card.

One of the key benefits of the Miles & More credit card is that it stops your Miles & More miles expiring.  Without the card, your miles have a 3-year expiry.  Unlike Avios, Miles & More miles expire after three years even if you have earned other miles in the meantime.

The card has no annual fee.

The issuer is MBNA, which also issues the American Airlines, Etihad, Emirates and United cards in the UK.  They are generally quite good at accepting modest earners (my Mum, who is retired on a modest pension, got a BMI card with no problem a couple of years ago).

You cannot churn MBNA cards, though.  If you have already had the Miles & More card, you will not receive a second sign-up bonus if you apply again – although they are happy to give you the card.

Miles & More miles only have value for long-haul redemptions, due to the crazy taxes on short-haul flights.  These are often higher than the cost of buying a cash ticket outright ….

If you are a solo traveller, there might be some value in getting this card.  A one-way in Business Class from the UK to, say, Dubai is only 30,000 Miles & More miles on Swiss, Lufthansa or Austrian.  An 11,500 mile sign-up bonus would leave you 18,500 miles short, which would only require £9,250 of Amex spend at the ’2 miles per £1′ rate for the first six months.

Miles & More also runs monthly mileage sales, which often have very good bargains – see this post for example.

Miles & More is NOT an American Express Membership Rewards partner, so you cannot top up your balance directly using Amex points.  The only option would be to transfer Amex points to Starwood and then to Miles & More, but that only gets you 0.5 M&M miles per 1 Amex point.  You could, of course, also get the Starwood Amex card (review here) with a sign-up bonus 10,000 points and transfer those into 10,000 Miles & More miles.  Lufthansa is also a Heathrow Rewards partner if you have any of those to convert.

(To see our complete list of all current credit card bonuses, click here to visit our ‘Credit Cards Update’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Comments (28)

  • Stu says:

    So MBNA cards definitely aren’t churnable? I know Amex have a stated policy but always thought MBNA’s was a bit more ambiguous. Has this changed?

    • Alan says:

      MBNA state no bonus but I’ve managed to churn with them before without an issue – I left six months’ gap.

    • Rob says:

      In the end days of BMI they got strict, as Alan points out you may get some leeway now. It is not guaranteed, tho’, unlike Amex.

      • Stu says:

        On the subject of Amex, I’ve seen rumblings on FlyerTalk that they’re clamping down on churning from May – at least in the US. Eligibility for any signup bonus may be restricted to once per lifetime! Any view whether this will apply/happen in the UK?

  • flieduk says:

    What are the taxes like on long-haul? I was considering for a long time whether or not to get a *A FFP.

    • Rob says:

      As big as BA with Miles & More. The United scheme in the US does not charge fuel surcharges on some airline redemptions which may make it a better choice for crediting flights, but it depends on your flight patterns, desire for status etc.

      Star Silver, unlike BA Silver, only gives lounge access on the airline that issues your card. If you fly LH in economy a lot, it makes more sense to use Miles and More – despite redemption taxes – as you will get lounge access once you,hit Silver.

  • Mark says:

    How useful is this likely to be for other Star shorthaul redemptions such as United for US domestics?

    We have a South African flight coming up later in the year and I was considering the best scheme to credit the miles to. It won’t earn us enough for status with Aegean (probably around 8-9K miles if we travel business class) and we rarely fly with Star airlines, so perhaps this is the way to go for an option which, with the credit card, won’t expire?

    • SoloFlyer says:

      You could credit them to VS if you do not fly Star a lot 🙂

      • Mark says:

        We don’t fly Virgin much either, but that’s possibly a good idea. Due to flight time’s it’s likely that we’ll be flying one direction on an Air Mauritius operated code share. Not sure whether that will make a difference…

        • SoloFlyer says:

          Ahh if its a code-share that might not work. But if not then credit to VS you never know it might come in handy one day.

    • idrive says:

      US domestics should be around 12k with almost zero taxes

      • Boon says:

        Best value use of Miles&More miles in my opinion is the US internal flights. Went from Las Vegas to New York for 12,000 in economy, only $1.20 in taxes I think.

  • Brian says:

    Worth pointing out that you need to make at least one miles-earning purchase PER MONTH to prevent your miles from expiring. Unfortunately, you can’t just leave it in your desk! Still, that’s not a major problem.

    • Mark says:

      So ideally a monthly recurring transaction then, if you have any.

    • Rob says:

      Sorry, I forgot to mention that. If have Oyster PAYG then setting that as your card for auto top up works.

      • signol says:

        A £1 (or more) per month charity donation also works.

        • idrive says:

          or LoveFilm (Amazon) or just send £1 giftcard to Amazon or any other recurring. i have got a couple of them setup for these purposes.

  • Paul Johnston-Knight says:

    Hmmm, I was hoping this would happen at the start of the year to prevent me losing or having to use my M&M before some expire this month, but it didn’t so I applied for the Virgin card.

    My issue now is that the Virgin I think is also an MBNA card so I think I’m stuck and cannot now get the M&M card even for the bonus miles (too late for the non-expiry clause this month) …. any views on whether Virgin would preclude the application to M&M?


    • Dan says:

      Not the case… I have MBNA virgin white, MBNA virgin black, MBNA united card and and MBNA AA card 🙂

    • Rob says:

      No, you will be fine. If they turn you down, ring and reduce the balance on Virgin – they will use this as the limit on the LH card.

  • Gill says:

    Similar question to Paul’s – I have an American Airlines MBNA card – will that stop me getting this one?

    • Dan says:

      as above 🙂

    • Alan says:

      It’s not an issue in the slightest – in fact if you have any problem being approved for the new card MBNA will often allow you to move some of your credit limit from your other card(s) to allow the new one to be opened!

  • louise says:

    On the subject of churning restrictions my husband and I have just had a ding dong with the Marriott credit card because he had already received 10,000 sign up once and they weren’t very keen on paying it again. We asked them to specifically point to the terms and conditions where it said “once per life” but they couldn’t because it wasn’t there. Marriott/Creation still said they wouldn’t pay it so we walked away with the “you can’t win them all” attitude only to find 2 weeks later the points have gone in.

    I strongly suspect the terms and conditions are now totally cast iron.