LifeMiles Offering 140% Bonus On Purchased Miles

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Update: It appears that not everyone is seeing this offer on their account. I’m working on investigating, though see no reason it would be targeted, so I’d recommend being patient.

LifeMiles has just launched their latest major promotion on purchased miles, which is available for four days only. The LifeMiles program is offering up to a 140% bonus on purchased miles through Monday, November 12, 2018.

Through this promotion, LifeMiles is offering a tiered bonus on purchased miles, as follows:

  • Buy 1,000 to 50,000 miles, get a 115% bonus (1.535 cents per mile)
  • Buy 51,000 to 100,000 miles, get a 130% bonus (1.435 cents per mile)
  • Buy 101,000 to 200,000 miles, get a 125% bonus (1.375 cents per mile)

LifeMiles ordinarily charges 3.3 cents per mile, so if you purchase at least 101,000 miles (pre-bonus) you’d end up paying 1.375 cents per mile.

Note that when you click the above link you won’t actually see the correct offer promoted. It seems they’re using an old banner accidentally. However, when you enter how many miles you want to buy (in the “other” box), you should get the correct pricing.

This offer is about as good as you’ll see on the purchase of LifeMiles. Typically when there’s a promotion, LifeMiles offers a 125% bonus. Then sometimes they’ve offered a 140% bonus on a targeted basis, or to readers of OMAAT. Here they’re offering everyone a 140% bonus, so that’s great.

Furthermore, LifeMiles has temporarily increased the cap on how many miles you can buy from 150,000 to 200,000, pre-bonus.

Should you buy LifeMiles?

When it comes to redeeming LifeMiles, Avianca is in the Star Alliance, so check out the Star Alliance award chart for redemption rates. To give a few examples of one way premium cabin redemption rates (there are no fuel surcharges on any awards):

  • US to Europe in business class costs 63,000 miles
  • US to Europe in first class costs 87,000 miles
  • US to Southeast Asia in business class costs 78,000 miles
  • US to North Asia in first class costs 90,000 miles

With a specific use in mind, this promotion can be a great value, especially for first class travel on ANA or Asiana. ANA first class between the US and Japan for ~$1,240 one-way is a pretty darn good value, if you ask me.

Or business class between the US and Europe will just run you ~$870, which is an excellent value as well.

Everyone has to crunch the numbers for themselves and decide whether this makes sense or not.

The one catch is that LifeMiles doesn’t always have access to all the same space that other Star Alliance programs do. So you’ll want to do an online search to make sure the type of redemption you’re looking at is available. However, they have access to more space than in the past, so I don’t find this to be as big of an issue as it used to be.

Buying LifeMiles counts as airfare purchase

LifeMiles processes mileage purchases directly, meaning that buying miles with them qualifies 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
Citi Premier℠ Card3x ThankYou points per dollar spent
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card2x Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent

So while the cost to purchase LifeMiles is as low as 1.375 cents each, if you used The Platinum Card® from American Express you’d earn 5x Membership Rewards points. I value those points at 1.7 cents each, so to me that’s the equivalent of an additional 8.5% return, bringing down the “real” cost to ~1.26 cents per mile.

Bottom line

A 140% bonus on purchased LifeMiles is typically as good as it gets. It’s tough to go wrong buying LifeMiles for 1.375 cents each (and potentially even less when you consider the value of the points you earn for credit card spend).

I book LifeMiles award tickets all the time, and love that they allow one-ways and don’t have carrier imposed surcharges. Just remember that the availability they have doesn’t always match what other programs see.

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  1. @Lucky

    Does buying LifeMiles extend the expiration date of your existing account balance?

    They implemented a new policy in 2018 saying that you need to accrue miles in order to extend your expiration date, but I’m not sure if “accrue” means earning points through flying or purchases with partners, or if you can also extend expiration through points purchases?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. i don’t see the promo if i use the link you have here. so i seems i am not eligible to get any bonus. Is this just targeted to some people?

  3. @ Rukmi @ RG — Sorry, will update the post to reflect this, but basically it seems they have the wrong banner and the display isn’t intuitive, but if you select the number of miles you want to buy, you should see the correct pricing.

  4. I have entered 101000 and I get $3333 and I get no bonus miles. Ive also done more and less too and its not calculating the bonus.

  5. @ ZC — Would be news to me, and since this is only four days, seems highly unlikely. Would be nice, though!

  6. @ RG — I’m stumped, this is odd. I received the email and see nothing suggesting this is targeted. So you enter your LifeMiles number and then does the next page show anything at all as far as a bonus, or a banner showing a 2-for-1 offer? Have you had your LifeMiles account for at least a few weeks?

  7. I checked as well and don’t see any promotion offer. I am getting the full rice for miles and no bonus miles. Have had account over a year. Thanks

  8. Definitely targeted. Not seeing the bonus and when I put in I want to buy 100K miles, it gives me a zero bonus and says that the cost is $3,300

  9. It appears to be working for me. I was not targeted, I’ve been a LM member for more than a year. Entered 101,000 to purchase, it shows 141,400 bonus = 242,400 LM to accrue. I clicked through Lucky’s article hyperlink.

  10. @ZC +1

    @Ben, can you get LifeMile to bring back the 150% bonus offer? It’s that time of the year & I’d partake at that price point! 🙂

  11. It appears that it is targeted. I received the email, followed the link, and see the bonus. My wife did not receive an email, and when I signed in to her account the offer does not show.

  12. Received an email this morning, “Singles’ Day Promo”…. 🙂
    Anyway, beautiful timing, purchased miles with bonus, had an LH transatlantic flight ticketed 5 minutes later, all good.

  13. I do not see any bonus offer at all. I’ve bought Lifemiles before so obviously this is a targeted offer

  14. Received an email direct from LM with the offer. Won’t be taking it up this time, as LM’s is not one you should go overboard on accumulating due to the limited availability of First class seats which are often available on, say, UA MP. Also miles will expire unless you do meticulous miles housekeeping!

  15. This offer is not appearing for me when I go to purchase LifeMiles; no Applicable Bonus populates. My account is more than a year old and never used it to buy or collect before. Sad.

  16. Got an email. entered 101,000 Applicable bonus 141,400 LifeMiles to accrue shows 242,400 Grand Total USD = 3,333.00.. Is it a good deal?

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