My gosh, this month is off to a busy start on the promotion/travel front.
Through May 17, 2013, American is offering up to a 30% bonus when you purchase 20,000 or more AAdvantage miles. The bonus thresholds are as follows:
Furthermore, until 12PM CT on Friday, April 5, American is offering a 15% discount on the purchase of AAdvantage miles.
You can purchase a maximum of 60,000 AAdvantage miles per account per calendar year, though to get the best cent per mile ratio you’d be best off buying 40,000 miles along with the 12,000 mile bonus.
If you do that you’d get a total of 52,000 AAdvantage miles for $1,040.13. That’s two cents per mile on the nose, which is about as good as these promotions get.
They actually offered miles at a similar price in February, though they marketed it slightly differently as up to a 50% bonus on the purchase of miles, and not a 30% bonus and 15% discount. I’ll say the same thing I said last time:
I value American miles at ~1.8 cents each, so this is actually a pretty decent rate for someone that has immediate travel plans but not enough American miles. Between the US and “Asia 2,” American charges just 55,000 miles for one-way business class or 67,500 miles for one-way first class. At two cents per mile that’s $1,100 for one-way business class to Asia or $1,350 for one-way first class, both of which are really good values.
This isn’t a rate at which I’d “stock up” just for giggles, but if you have a good use for American miles in the near future this is as good of a rate as I’ve ever seen.
It can take about 72 hours for purchased American miles to post, though also keep in mind that you can place AAdvantage award tickets on hold for five days, so if you’re eying a specific award you could hold the space and then purchase the miles.
American mileage purchases are processed by points.com, so purchasing miles doesn’t qualify as travel spend for the purposes of your credit card.