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Lufthansa selling miles with a 60% bonus via its odd ‘bundles’ – as low as 0.96p

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As we’ve covered on HfP in the past, Lufthansa has spent many years trying to claim that its miles have no value.

This isn’t because they are hard to redeem (although premium availability is very tight post covid) but because it has been hit by various legal claims under German law.

Lufthansa had a problem. It could hardly claim that its miles had no fixed value if it was selling them at a fixed price, so it pulled the sale of miles.

Lufthansa selling miles with a 60% bonus

It actually went further. It stopped the transfer of points from other schemes into Miles & More if those points could be purchased.

For example, because Marriott sells Bonvoy points to the public, you can no longer transfer Bonvoy points into Miles & More. This is because – de facto – you could claim it puts a fixed value on the Lufthansa miles. You can transfer Heathrow Rewards points to Miles & More, because Heathrow Rewards doesn’t sell points to the public.

The revenue stream from selling miles is hard to resist, however. I’ve heard employees (the company which runs most mileage purchase schemes) speak at conferences and the sums they quote for the total volume of miles sold is mind boggling. We once sold £600,000 of Avios from one HfP article on a ‘buy points’ discount offer, and this is only counting purchases done from people who went via our link – the true number will have been 2-3x higher.

Lufthansa has found a way around the rules

What Lufthansa has started doing is selling ‘bundles’. You are buying a pile of miles, but you’re getting some extra ‘benefits’ thrown in.

The fact that these extra ‘benefits’ are worthless is besides the point.

The price paid for the miles is in theory obscured and so they see the legal threat as reduced.

Lufthansa selling miles with a 60% bonus

Here are the extra ‘benefits’ that come if you buy Miles & More miles:

  • bonus miles when you next book a hotel or car via the Lufthansa website
  • bonus miles on your next five Avis rentals credited to Miles & More
  • with some bundles, mid level Avis status
  • a discount on a Priority Pass membership (identical or worse than the discount code you can buy from Groupon for £7)

Yes, it’s exciting stuff!

Get a bonus of 60% when you buy a bundle by 30th September

Until the end of the month, Lufthansa is offering bonus miles when you buy a bundle.

As you can see from the website here, you receive:

  • 16,000 Miles & More miles with the £220 ‘Small Bundle’ (1.4p per mile)
  • 80,000 Miles & More miles with the £880 ‘Medium Bundle’ (1.1p per mile)
  • 160,000 Miles & More miles with the £1,540 ‘Large Bundle’ (0.96p per mile)

You can buy up to 500,000 miles, pre any bonuses, in 2023. This means that you could buy 800,000 miles via the promotion with 5 x ‘Large Bundles’.

Lufthansa selling miles with a 60% bonus

Is it worth buying Miles & More miles at this price?

If you have no existing Miles & More balance then I don’t recommend it. This is because:

  • short haul redemptions are bad value
  • Lufthansa First Class redemptions (far easier to get via M&M than via partners) are currently very scarce
  • Business Class availability across Lufthansa and SWISS is far lower than it was pre-covid, when I could be pretty sure of getting four seats whenever I wanted
  • taxes and charges are high
  • miles expire after three years and you can’t do anything to save them, unless you earn M&M elite status

There are good points though, with several sweet spots including flights to the Middle East. If you do have a balance in the programme and want to top it up before a big redemption, this new ‘bundle’ promotion is a good chance to do so.

You can look at details of the bundles, and buy, here.

Comments (21)

  • Mikeact says:

    The very worst FFP scheme around ?

    • Justin says:

      I don’t think it is that bad a programme. It will depend on where you want to fly. I’ve used it mainly on EVA Air redemptions. The fees are not high as long as you are flying from EU or Asia. The main problem is there is no credit card. I did very well with the old card, especially combined with Curve 🙂 It’s more useful to me than Flying Blue, which seems to have stupidly expensive dynamic pricing redemptions now, or Flying Club, where the only worthwhile redemption is ANA.

      • QFFlyer says:

        While I didn’t have it, the old Diners Card would have been gold if it worked the way the Aussie one did with Curve…

    • The Original David says:

      Haha, you have led a very sheltered life if you think M&M is the very worst. Try Air China’s Phoenix Miles for a start.

    • David Cohen says:

      At Senator, it’s not bad. Not great, but not bad. You can waitlist for premium awards, get access to first class on Swiss, you get 50% off a companion if travelling together.
      It’ll be interesting to see how the changes in terms of aligning more closely to the Exec Club for going to tier points pan out. I think they’ve gone on the high side, but for their core market in DACH, it’s probably about right.
      Still a shame there’s no UK credit card.

    • Bagoly says:

      Meilenschnäppchen are still available, if limited in number while number of aircraft is low post-Covid. Managed Seattle in J for 55k miles + EUR700 in June.
      And if you want to go to some of Turkish Airlines less mainstream destinations such as East Africa (including proper business class from UK) the fact that the ceiling is 500k M&Ms rather than 50k Miles&Smiles makes a big difference.

    • Peter says:

      To each his own. Vienna to Dubai and back for 90.000 miles and 200€ in economy last autumn was not that bad… and that was the price for 2 people 😀 Could have been worse.

  • Greenpen says:

    This might be a really good offer if you need a substantial top up with your existing miles approaching the end of their life.

    Having collected miles towards a F flight using the LH MBNA credit card I was about twenty thousand short with that hard expiry date fast approaching. I had to buy miles through their hotel booking site (bonuses you pay for through a higher price) at about 1.5p per mile. This offer is much better and if you are happy to take the risk about securing F redemptions then makes sense.

  • Save East Coast Rewards says:

    “miles expire after three years and you can’t do anything to save them, unless you earn M&M elite status”

    Not strictly true, you could move to a country that still has a M&M credit card 😁

    • Jonathan says:

      Easier said than done !

      I think many months ago another reader mentioned something about being able to obtain a Swiss co-branded cc that’d stop points from expiring, anyone got any info on this at all ? It was mentioned however that ID checks are a bit frustrating though…

      • meta says:

        Plenty of peope with dual or multiple nationalities and/or residencies. Earning rates on some of these cards are very very poor, but at least they keep the miles alive if you spend once monthly.

        • Jonathan says:

          Yeah it’s not ideal, especially if your card offers little incentive to use it as your everyday card when earning rates are poor compared to competitor cards.
          Using a card once a month purely to stop points expiry is unfortunately the only good use some of their cards have !

  • Albo says:

    Does anyone know a creative way to convert Amex points into M&M points now that they’ve closed the Marriot Bonvoy option?

    • Jonathan says:

      There’s no option at all to earn M&M points via UK credit card spending.

      The Marriott route was forced to be shut down after someone in Germany begin legal proceedings to get cash for their balance of points claiming them to be a form of e-currency, as Marriott sold points directly and then allows (until it was stopped in light of the case) transfers to M&M, this makes M&M points a form of e-currency, and the person who began legal proceedings believes that they have a right to get cash for their balance of points.
      No one has any idea how this ongoing legal dispute is going on with the case, and things first kicked off in 2019, meaning that Covid definitely slowed the German legal system down to say the least.
      It’ll be good when it’s out of the way, as then M&M could potentially look at more partnerships from then on, for now though, a lot of doors are firmly shut

      • Londonsteve says:

        Germans are very good at launching awkward legal claims with an almost psychopathic determination to prove a nuanced point, in this case not even gaining very much. Reminds me too of the UK ebay vendor who had to pay a pile of damages to the German bidder for a professional reel-to-reel recorder. Having terminated the auction early with a view to not selling it, the German bidder claimed he was entitled to buy it for whatever price the auction was at, on the basis the vendor wasn’t entitled to terminate the auction early having started it. The German claimant won and cost the UK vendor about £10k in damaged.

        • Rob says:

          Indeed. Most Germans buy personal liability insurance because of the propensity of other Germans to sue you at any possible opportunity.

          • Jek says:

            Not true. Private PLI is there to cover damages caused to others. For example, dropping a glas of red wine at a friend’s house on an expensive rug. I dropped it, it’s my fault, my PLI pays for it, and I pay a higher premium. No problem. I still don’t understand the British approach. I dropped it, it’s my fault, the owner’s content insurance pays for it, and they pay a higher premium.

        • Jonathan says:

          Very unfortunate, if you think you might end the auction early, then you should state on the listing that you’re within your rights to do so.

          eBay don’t help themselves by deterring people from selling on their platform by treating host sellers like crooks when buyers decide to be dickheads

  • Jonathan says:

    Germans are worse than Americans with suing people ?!?
    I didn’t think anyone would ever do the Americans…

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