Emirates Skywards has launched a flash sale on purchased miles, which is the best promotion we’ve ever seen from the program for acquiring miles.
Buy Emirates Skywards miles for 1.5 cents each
Through 11:59PM GST on Friday, May 7, 2021, Emirates is offering up to a 100% bonus on purchased miles.
While different accounts may be targeted for different offers, the accounts I see all show the 100% bonus as long as you purchase at least 5,000 miles in one transaction. This is the first time I ever recall seeing a 100% bonus on purchased Skywards miles.
Emirates Skywards ordinarily sells miles for 3.0 US cents each, so with a 100% bonus you’re looking at paying just 1.5 US cents per Skywards mile. If you maxed out this promotion you could purchase a total of 200,000 Skywards miles at a cost of $3,000.
There are some basics to keep in mind when it comes to buying Skywards miles:
- You can purchase up to 100,000 miles per Skywards account per calendar year
- You can only purchase miles if you’ve had at least some activity in your Skywards account
- It can take up to 48 hours for purchased miles to post to your account
- Mileage purchases are processed by points.com, so wouldn’t count as airfare for the purposes of credit card spending; I’d recommend using a card on which you’re trying to reach minimum spending, or otherwise, a credit card that maximizes your return on everyday spending
Is buying Emirates Skywards miles worth it?
Emirates Skywards doesn’t have an award chart, but rather has a redemption calculator that will tell you how many miles you’ll need for a ticket. Typically one-ways cost more than half as much as a roundtrip, so the value proposition varies.
A while back Emirates Skywards miles became more valuable, as the carrier eliminated carrier imposed surcharges. You’re generally going to find the best value booking premium cabin awards, so to give you some examples of pricing…
New York to Milan or Newark to Athens will cost you:
- Business class: 62,500 miles one-way, 90,000 miles roundtrip
- First class: 85,000 miles one-way, 135,000 miles roundtrip
Redeem Skywards miles for Emirates business class
Los Angeles to Dubai will cost you:
- Business class: 113,750 miles one-way, 165,000 miles roundtrip
- First class: 155,000 miles one-way, 247,500 miles roundtrip
Redeem Skywards miles for Emirates first class
Those are just a couple of examples, though you can expect that the further you fly, the more miles will be needed.
In many situations booking through the Skywards program is the best value, though there are other options as well, like booking through Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan or Japan Airlines Mileage Bank (however, these programs have restricted access to first class awards).
Unfortunately Emirates Skywards doesn’t have any great award redemption values for travel on partner airlines, so you should exclusively be considering this if you actually want to travel on Emirates.
Skywards doesn’t have good partner airline redemption rates
Other ways to earn Emirates Skywards miles
Emirates Skywards is transfer partners with all major transferable points currencies, including Amex Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou, and Capital One, so there are lots of ways to earn Skywards miles. Sometimes we even see transfer bonuses, which can improve the value proposition of transferring points even further.
Personally I value most transferable points currencies at ~1.7 cents each, though everyone has a different valuation. Some people with transferable points may prefer to accrue Skywards miles that way, while others may prefer to buy Skywards miles outright with an offer like this, and save those points for other redemptions.
On top of that, Emirates has co-branded credit cards in the United States that you can earn Skywards miles with.
Emirates has just launched a flash sale on purchased Skywards miles, giving members the opportunity to buy miles with a 100% bonus, for just 1.5 cents each. This is the best price I ever recall seeing on purchased Skywards miles.
If you have a specific premium cabin redemption in mind then I’d say this puts Skywards miles into the price range where picking them up could make sense. And fortunately the minimum number of miles you need to purchase to unlock the full bonus is pretty low, so this could also be useful for topping off an account for a redemption.
Does anyone plan on buying Emirates Skywards miles for 1.5 cents each?