KrisFlyer News Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines devalues KrisFlyer miles rate for offsetting cash fares

Singapore Airlines is devaluing KrisFlyer miles by 6.7%, but only when you use them to offset cash fares, which you shouldn't be doing anyway.

Singapore Airlines has announced that effective from 17th August 2021, any KrisFlyer miles redeemed to offset cash payments for revenue fares via the ‘Mix KrisFlyer miles and cash’ option, or to settle ancillary payments, will be devalued by 7%.

That means you’ll now need to redeem 1,050 miles to offset S$10 of fare or payment, instead of the current 980 miles.

Value per mile

Here’s how the value per mile is changing for this cash offset option.

Value until 16th August 2021
980 Miles    S$10
1.02 cents
per mile

Value from 17th August 2021
1,050 Miles    S$10
0.95 cents
per mile

This works out as a 6.7% devaluation, but don’t worry – most of our readers are rarely (if ever) using this method.

Offsetting cash fares using KrisFlyer miles will cost you 7% more from 17th August 2021, but you should never have been doing this anyway. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Cash value for KrisFlyer miles

As with most frequent flyer programmes, the truly good value for your KrisFlyer miles lies in a flight redemption, most of the time in First Class or Business Class.

Whenever you redeem miles for a cash alternative – the value plummets – and it’s then a far cry from the 1.9 cents valuation we pin on the currency as our upper limit to buy, given the conservative 2.4 cents per mile we actually achieve when redeeming, based on over a million miles used and assuming current award rates.

Here’s how the cash alternative rates now look for your miles with this slightly devalued ‘Mix KrisFlyer miles and cash’ option highlighted.

Cash alternatives for KrisFlyer miles

Method Min. miles Value per mile
Transfer to Shangri-La points for ‘Instant Dining Awards’
Jade / Diamond SLGC status
20,000 1.40¢
Transfer to Shangri-La points for ‘Instant Dining Awards’
Gold SLGC status
20,000 1.12¢
Credit towards an SIA cash ticket
(ends 16 Aug)
980 1.02¢
Credit towards an SIA cash ticket
(from 17 Aug)
1,050 0.95¢
Credit towards a Scoot cash ticket 1,050 0.95¢
Redeem a KrisShop purchase 1,000 0.80¢
Redeem a vRooms hotel stay 1,200 0.80¢
Transfer to Tap for More points 3,000 0.73¢
Kris+ 15 0.67¢
Transfer to Esso Smiles points
3,000 0.33¢
to
0.67¢

As you can see the new rate now matches the same one applicable when offsetting fares for Scoot flights at 0.95 cents each, which of course we certainly don’t recommend either.

Redeeming Scoot flights using KrisFlyer miles always had this (slightly lousier) 0.95 cents redemption rate per mile. (Photo: Scoot)

It does still come out better than many other cash alternatives including KrisShop redemptions.

However, outside the Shangri-La Golden Circle programme, which requires a hefty minimum transfer, it remains the most valuable cash-out option when no promotional offers are running, though its value remains limited while we still don’t know when and where we can fly again.

We can’t emphasise enough though that the ‘Mix KrisFlyer miles and cash’ option is really poor value, unless you perhaps have a small balance to use up and wish to cash-out of the KrisFlyer scheme completely.

In the above example, it will cost over 413,000 KrisFlyer miles to totally offset the fare and taxes on a S$4,200 Singapore – London flight in Business Class next month, over four times the rate for a saver award seat in the same cabin.

From 17th August 2021, this rate will increase to over 440,000 KrisFlyer miles.


 

 

Summary

This slight devaluation of KrisFlyer miles when used as a cash alternative to your ticket cost isn’t something that will affect most of our readers right now.

Very few people actually make use of this poor value option, which we never recommended even at the 1.02 cent rate, and for the time being there are no imminent expiry concerns with all KrisFlyer miles extended until at least April 2022.

Further validity extensions are also likely, so there is simply no need to cash out your miles for non-flight alternatives at the moment if you don’t want to.

Let’s hope this devaluation isn’t a sign of KrisFlyer tinkering with it’s all-important award charts, with many of us raring to redeem some fairly hefty balances once quarantine-free travel options start to appear from September this year!

(Cover Photo: Plane’s Portrait Aviation Media / Malcolm Lu)

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