This is a continuation to my previous post Part 1 about ways to purchase miles for business class tickets without breaking the bank.
Lets look at a seemingly obscure but useful program from South America – Avianca Lifemiles, which allows redemption with Star Alliance members like ANA, Thai Airways, Lufthansa, etc. Avianca Lifemiles can be purchased at a standard rate of USD33 for 1000 miles, but I wouldn’t go crazy over that. Havibg said that Lifemiles are known to run regular points promotion several times a year.
- May 2016, 125% bonus
- December 2015, 150% bonus
- October 2015, 150% bonus
- September 2015, 145% bonus
Current promotion: A tiered promotion, i.e. maximum bonus when you purchase >100,000 miles.
Say if you are getting the top-tiered 2 x 1 +30% bonus means that you pay about ~USD14.4 per 1000 miles.
Avianca Lifemiles is a zone-based program and the details of the geographical zones and redemption chart are found in this link.
My favourite Lifemiles redemption:
Australia to North Asia business class one-way for 40,000 miles= USD 576 + taxes
Considering a revenue ticket from Sydney to Tokyo normally costs ~USD 2000 one-way, this is an amazing deal to be had. North Asia encompasses places such as China, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and interestingly Mircronesian islands such as Guam and Palau.
ANA 787 Dreamliner
What’s great about Lifemiles?
- No fuel surcharge: That’s right. Unlike many FF programs that still pass on ludicrous amount of fuel surcharge (even when fuel prices have been on record low for a while now), Lifemiles does not impose additional charges that would otherwise dilute its redemptive value.
- Purchase miles at USD16 per 1,000miles all year even when Lifemiles is not running a promotion. As long as you have about 40% of the miles required for the trip, you can use the miles and cash option to acquire additional miles at the rate above, which is excellent.
Should you purchase Avianca Lifemiles?
If you do not already have an account, consider signing up now as it is free to do so. I don’t tend to encourage purchasing miles speculatively. Unless I have upcoming trips in the foreseeable future, I would not purchase large sum of miles. You may also want to confirm the availability on Lifemiles portal before committing to purchasing miles.
Are you planning a trip to North Asia or Micronesia anytime soon? Why not plan in advance to score some amazing business class tickets.