American Offering Black Friday Bonus On Purchased Miles

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At the beginning of the month I wrote about American’s November 2018 promotion on purchased miles, where you can buy miles for as little as ~1.92 cents each. That’s an okay deal, though we’ve seen better promotions in the past.

Well, through November 26, 2018, American is offering a special Black Friday bonus on purchased miles. It’s better, though hardly amazing.

As before, the number of bonus miles you earn is tiered, and based on how many you buy, as follows:

  • Buy 10,000-24,000 miles, get 3,000 bonus miles
  • Buy 25,000-49,000 miles, get 9,000 bonus miles
  • Buy 50,000-74,000 miles, get 27,000 bonus miles
  • Buy 75,000-99,000 miles, get 48,000 bonus miles
  • Buy 100,000-149,000 miles, get 72,000 bonus miles
  • Buy 150,000 miles, get 120,000 bonus miles

At all levels, this promotion offers 20% more bonus miles than before. To maximize this promotion you’ll want to buy exactly 150,000 miles (pre-bonus). If you do that, you’d receive a total of 270,000 AAdvantage miles at a cost of $4,786.88, which is a cost of ~1.77 cents per mile.

As usual, AAdvantage accounts less than 30 days old aren’t eligible to purchase miles. Furthermore, there’s a cap of purchasing 150,000 AAdvantage miles per account per calendar year (pre-bonus).

As far as the value of this promotion goes, it’s the second best price we’ve seen on purchased American miles this year. Back over the summer, American sold miles for ~1.72 cents each, which was a bit better.

One other thing to keep in mind is that American processes mileage purchases directly, which means the purchase of miles does qualify as airfare spend. Therefore you’ll want to consider using one of the following cards for your purchase, since they offer the following bonus miles for airfare spend:

CardPoints earned on airfare spend
The Platinum Card® from American Express5x Membership Rewards points per dollar spent
American Express® Gold Card3x Membership Rewards points per dollar spent
Chase Sapphire Reserve®3x Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card2x Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent
Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard®2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases


Redeem American miles for JAL business class

For example, I value Membership Rewards points at 1.7 cents each, so I view that as an 8.5% return on this spend if you use The Platinum Card® from American Express. To me that lowers the real cost from ~1.77 cents to ~1.62 cents per mile.

Bottom line

Personally I wouldn’t speculatively buy miles at this price, though if you have a redemption in mind, bonuses on purchased American miles don’t get much better than this. For more on redeeming American miles, see my previous post about the promotion.

Anyone plan to take advantage of American’s Black Friday bonus on purchased miles?

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