Credit Cards KrisFlyer

Why DBS’s latest ‘more miles’ promotion isn’t worth it

Buying KrisFlyer miles for 2.2 cents each isn't sensible. Moreover, it isn't necessary.

EXPIRED This article relates to an offer or promotion which has now expired.

DBS Altitude Backround 2 (DBS)

An interesting new promotion popped up on the DBS Altitude homepage last night, the ability to register and earn up to 4 miles per dollar spent on the card. It’s their way of replicating the Maybank offer (which ended on Sunday) of 1 extra mile per dollar over your usual earning rates between now and the end of 2018.

So that’s 2.2 miles per dollar earned locally, 3 miles per dollar overseas and 4 miles per dollar for online hotel and flight transactions. On the face of it, all good news.

Read in a little more detail though and you’ll soon find the catch.

The cost

All DBS asks for you to be eligible for this additional mile per dollar compared with your usual rate on the Altitude card is a 2.2% ‘administrative fee’. It won’t take you long to work out what they’re actually asking is for you to pay them 2.2 cents each for the extra miles.

Here’s their worked example of how you can pay S$154 for 7,000 extra miles with this ‘promotion’:

More Miles Example.jpg
(Image: DBS)

Our regular readers will know we don’t endorse ‘buying’ KrisFlyer miles at anything above our upper limit of 2 cents each. That’s not to say a KrisFlyer mile is worth exactly 2 cents, if you’re redeeming sensibly you should be achieving much better than that. If you’re having a bad day and not thinking straight while blindly booking an award ticket, you could well be achieving a lot less than that.

The point is we maintain an upper limit to buy of 2 cents per mile for good reasons – read our ‘what’s a mile worth’ page to find out why.

The details of the DBS Altitude ‘more miles’ offer, including full terms and conditions, are available here.

Why should DBS be generous?

But hang on – DBS don’t have to sell miles to us at a cost we feel is reasonable, right? Right! They are a business and can sell them at whatever rate they want, it’s up to the consumer to decide if it’s a price worth paying. I think many will do so and DBS clearly feel they have settled on a rate whereby sufficient customers will take them up on the offer to make it worth their while.

DBS Building (DBS)
(Photo: DBS)

We aren’t here to police the banks, and they most certainly won’t amend the