Pelago, SIA’s own Klook-like “destination discovery platform”, has been around since late 2020 and offers a range of activities, experiences and attraction tickets both in Singapore and overseas in destinations like Bangkok, Sydney Phuket and London.
Activities and experiences available include include theme park admission, food and drink tours, wellness treatments and museum tickets, with over 8,000 packages currently available ranging from a few dollars to over S$5,000 at the time of writing, including over 390 here in Singapore itself.
While the key draw is earning miles for Pelago bookings, recently enhanced to a year-round 3 mpd rate on top of up to 6 mpd with the right payment card, for up to 9 mpd total earning, there’s also the option to redeem your miles via the platform.
Redeeming with Pelago is poor value… but
As usual with these ‘cash out’ options for your KrisFlyer miles, “earn but don’t burn” has always been our advice – since Pelago only usually offers S$1 off your experience bookings per 150 KrisFlyer miles redeemed year-round (0.67 cents per mile value).
Recently though, Pelago has been offering a 20% discount on miles needed to redeem, meaning 120 KrisFlyer miles will get you S$1 off (0.83 cents per mile value).
Originally Pelago was offering this redemption discount for experiences booked by 14th July 2023, but the offer has been extended and it’s now good for bookings made by 7th August 2023.
Normally we wouldn’t be mentioning such a poor value way to redeem your hard-earned KrisFlyer miles, but there’s a looming issue for many members.
KrisFlyer miles are expiring again from 31st July 2023, just two weeks from now.
That means in the worst case some members will be waving goodbye to miles, or trying to cash them out at relatively poor value, in the very near future.
Assuming the best use of miles – a flight redemption with Singapore Airlines or a partner airline – isn’t one of the options, our recently-compiled list starts to look a little sad value-wise.
Redemption value for KrisFlyer miles
|Option||Min. Expiring Miles||Value per mile|
|Redeem an SIA or partner award flight||8,500||1.90¢+|
|Extend your miles for a fee||1**||1.74¢|
|Transfer to Velocity points||5,000||1.03¢|
|Offset an SIA or Scoot cash fare||1,050||0.95¢|
|Redeem a Pelago experience||1,050||
|Redeem a vRooms hotel stay||1,200||0.80¢*|
|Offset a KrisShop purchase||~600||0.80¢|
|Transfer to Velocity points then back to KrisFlyer||7,750||0.79¢|
|Transfer to Shangri-La points||20,000||0.74¢|
|Transfer to CapitaStar||3,000||0.70¢|
|Transfer to Kris+||1||0.67¢|
|Transfer to LinkPoints then back to KrisFlyer||3,076||0.66¢|
|Transfer to LinkPoints||3,000||0.65¢|
|Transfer to Esso Smiles||3,000||0.33¢
|Transfer to Marriott Bonvoy||3,000||0.50¢|
* Can be better value in some cases.
** Or the miles quantity you have expiring in a single calendar month, if greater
Where necessary in this table, a miles redemption value for a Singapore Airlines flight is assumed at 1.9 cents. You may have to adjust the value per mile for some of these options, if your own valuation is different.
However, as you can see a Pelago booking is currently one of the better “cash out” options between now and 7th August 2023, and with a wide range of experiences on offer both in Singapore and around the world there might just be a good activity to use any expiring miles on by booking before they expire, even for a future-dated event.
How it works
Unfortunately Pelago only allows full redemption for an activity or experience using KrisFlyer miles, unlike options such as KrisShop and vRooms which allow you to mix-and-match miles and cash, better optimising a redemption that uses up only your expiring miles.
With Pelago, you’ll therefore ideally want to be redeeming for an experience priced such that it uses up only expiring miles, or at least doesn’t stretch too far into your non-expiring balance.
For example, if you have 10,000 expiring KrisFlyer miles you could redeem this indoor skydiving experience in Singapore at iFly Sentosa.
As you can see the usual cost of S$85.50 is waived if you use 10,260 KrisFlyer miles instead (0.83 cents per mile). Only 260 of your non-expiring miles will be “wasted” with this redemption, which probably isn’t a dealbreaker.
Even if you’re logged on to your Pelago account, you’ll still be asked for your KrisFlyer account login details to complete the redemption.
You can redeem miles for a future-dated activity, provided you actually book before the miles expire. As always, KrisFlyer miles expiring first will automatically be redeemed first.
Things to note
Other points to note when redeeming miles with Pelago:
- KrisFlyer redemption on Pelago is subject to a minimum spend of 1,050 miles (which would offset an S$8.72 transaction). Activities cheaper than this don’t offer the KrisFlyer miles redemption option.
- Pelago bookings must be made under your name, or the name of one of your redemption nominees, to redeem miles.
- If you cancel your unused Pelago experience booking made by redeeming from KrisFlyer, your miles will be refunded back into your account within two weeks, but there is no cash refund alternative.
Do note that even though can cancel your Pelago experience booking and have the KrisFlyer miles redeemed refunded to your account within two weeks of cancellation, this does not circumvent the expiry issue.
In this case, the miles will be returned to your account with the same expiry date they had when redeemed. If any of them would have expired already when the refund is processed, those miles will not be refunded.
Full list of expiring miles alternatives
In case you missed it, we have a full guide on how you can get the best value from your expiring miles, from best to worst case, rather than letting them lapse.
Do take a read if any of your stash is affected this month or in the near future, since it’s best to plan as far ahead as you can.
Pelago has extended its 20% discount for redeeming KrisFlyer miles on thousands of activities through to 7th August 2023, so provided you book before then you’ll be able to cash out KrisFlyer miles at 0.83 cents each.
That’s a poor rate, of course, but it’s not as bad as some other options like transferring to KrisPay miles in the Kris+ app.
With miles expiry rearing its ugly head again from 31st July 2023 onwards, don’t forget about this option, and remember there are many overseas activities on Pelago that could be of interest, like tours or museum tickets, if you have an upcoming overseas trip.
As always though, do try to lock in a flight redemption with your expiring miles if you can – it’s almost always the best value you’ll get.
(Cover Photo: Sentosa Development Corporation)