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Alaska Mileage Plan 40% buy miles bonus

Buy Alaska miles at 2.11 US cents each until 23rd February 2019, for good value First and Business Class award flights with several top airlines

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

CX 77W J 2 (Matt@TWN)

Alaska Airlines never waits long between its Mileage Plan ‘buy miles’ promotions, with the last one ending just over a month ago. Back then it was the highest bonus they ever offer, with many members targeted for 50% additional miles.

This time round it’s back to the more usual 40% bonus, meaning you can top up your account with miles at 2.11 US cents each. Alaska miles are an ideal frequent flyer currency to hold for good value Business Class and First Class redemptions in Asia-Pacific and beyond with several top airlines.

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The current offer

AStrans

As usual you will have to log on to your Mileage Plan account to check how the bonus is structured. That’s because Alaska tends to tailor these promotions slightly depending on your customer profile.

For example in the last bonus I was targeted at the 50% rate, while Eddie was offered 40% with a slightly different structure based on the quantity of miles purchased.

This time for me the deal is offered as follows:

  • 1,000 – 19,000 miles – no bonus (2.96 US ¢ / mile)
  • 20,000 – 60,000 miles – 40% bonus (2.11 US ¢ / mile)

Eddie, who always seems to get a different offer, has the following options:

  • 1,000 – 4,000 miles – no bonus (2.96 US ¢ / mile)
  • 5,000 – 19,000 miles – 20% bonus (2.46 US ¢ / mile)
  • 20,000 – 29,000 miles – 30% bonus (2.27 US ¢ / mile)
  • 30,000 – 60,000 miles – 40% bonus (2.11 US ¢ / mile)
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Deadline: 23rd February

The offer closes at 11.59m PST on Friday 22nd February 2019, which is 3.59pm on Saturday 23rd February 2019 Singapore time.

Anyone can buy with a bonus

Last year Alaska Airlines removed their limitation that only accounts 10 days or older were able to buy miles. That means you can sign up for an Alaska Mileage Plan account at any time and see what miles purchase bonus you are entitled to right away.

The exact bonus structure offered won’t be known until you register, but it’s worth a try so sign up now if you don’t yet have an account. Even if they don’t give you a very good bonus this time, you’ll be all set for the next one.

It’s unlimited (nearly) It’s now limited

If you proceed to make an Alaska miles purchase during this offer, the site will clearly show you the bonus miles applicable to each level.

You might automatically assume the highest level shown in the drop-down menu is the limit – it’s not.

You can buy an effectively unlimited volume of miles by repeating the purchases. It’s only possible to make up to four miles purchases per card however, so you are technically limited by the number of credit cards you have.

Edit 25th Jan 17:45: Assuming you don’t hold elite status in the Alaska Mileage Plan scheme (MVP, MVP Gold or MVP Gold 75K), you are now limited to 150,000 miles credited per calendar year from points.com (i.e. buying miles as in this promotion). That includes the applicable bonus, and any miles gifted to you through points.com.

If this restricts you and you book as a couple then one option is to have your partner open an Alaska account too, which would then allow you to buy up to 150,000 miles each per calendar year, if required.

Remember this only applies to miles credited by points.com, and you are still free to transfer miles into Alaska on top of that limit from hotel loyalty programs for example, and of course from eligible revenue flying.

Thanks to freedom in the comments section for alerting us to this.

2A Bed 2.jpg
First Class on Cathay Pacific from Singapore to the USA for 70,000 miles is an excellent use of the Alaska scheme. Check our review of the seat. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Which card to use

Assuming like most of our readers you are based in Singapore, you’ll want to achieve the maximum number of credit card miles for the purchase itself when buying Alaska miles. If you do go ahead and buy, the transaction happens in US dollars (i.e. non-SGD) and is processed by points.com.

Pointsdotcom

You can earn the most extra miles for the purchase transaction by using one of the following Singapore issued credit cards if you can:

Card Miles per S$1 Notes
Card.png
DBS Women’s World Mastercard
(see our review)
4.0 4mpd on all online spend in a calendar month, capped at S$2,000.
Card.png
UOB Visa Signature
4.0 4mpd on all overseas spend of at least S$1,000 in a statement period, capped at S$2,000.
Card.png
BOC Elite Miles World Mastercard
(see our review)
3.0 3mpd on all non-SGD spend, with no cap.
image_standard-chartered-visa-infinite@2x02.png
Standard Chartered Visa Infinite
(see our review)
3.0 For non-SGD spend, provided total card spend (any currency) is S$2,000 or greater in the same statement cycle.
UOB-PRVI-MC.png
UOB PRVI Miles (see our review)
2.4 All non-SGD spend.
Card.jpg
OCBC Voyage Visa
(see our review)
2.3 All non-SGD spend.
citi-premiermiles-new.jpg
Citi PremierMiles (see our review)
2.0 All non-SGD spend.
Final Card Image.jpg
Citi Prestige (see our review)
2.0 All non-SGD spend.

We also understand the Citi Rewards Visa or Mastercard earns at the 10x bonus rewards rates (4 miles per dollar) on points.com transactions, though as we haven’t tried this do be cautious and don’t scold us if the bonus is not credited!

Card Miles per S$1 Notes
Citi Rewards Card.jpg
Citi Rewards Visa / MasterCard
(see our review)
4.0 points.com transactions qualify for 10x Rewards Points (4mpd). Remember a monthly cap now applies.

This can be a very nice deal

When used the right way, Alaska miles can represent very good value at these high bonus rates, with 40% being the second-highest bonus the airline tends to offer.

Alaska Air 737 (Alaska Air)
(Photo: Alaska Airlines)

As you might have guessed, or probably already know, First and Business Class redemptions with Alaska’s partner airlines are where the value lies.

If like us you’re based in Asia – think options like Cathay Pacific or JAL Business / First Class to the USA, Qantas from Sydney to Dallas in First Class on the A380, even Qantas flat-bed A330 domestic Business Class can be a steal with these miles.

We’ve outlined the great uses of Alaska miles to and from this region before, but here’s a recap of the options applicable to the majority of our readers.

Airline Routes
AAtrans.png Asia – Canada/USA, Caribbean & Mexico
Australia/NZ – Canada/USA
BAtrans.png India/South Asia – Canada/USA & Mexico
CXtrans.png Asia – Canada/USA
Australia/NZ – Canada/USA
India/South Asia – Canada/USA
Intra-Asia
Hong Kong – Africa, Australia/NZ, Europe, India/South Asia & Middle East