Until May 31st you have an opportunity to purchase miles which could be redeemed for flights on airlines belonging to Star Alliance.
Avianca airline and their Lifemiles program is not very well know to people who are not in the miles and points hobby, but Avianca is a part of the Star Alliance so you have plenty of famous carriers serving destinations across the globe to redeem on. If you max out the current promotion you will get 125% discount to the normal purchase price of the miles.
In the example above, we are buying more than 101,000 miles to be eligible for the maximum bonus. 450,000 miles costs $6,600.01, or effectively 1.47 cents per mile.
How many Avianca Lifemiles do you need to get around? Here is the Lifemiles award chart including redemptions from all the regions and a few examples (excluding airline taxes) of one-way fare assuming your are purchasing miles @ 1.47 cents per mile and redeeming for flights from the USA:
USA - EUROPE in Business Class is 63,000 miles (~$926)
USA - EUROPE in First Class is 87,000 miles (~$1,279)
USA - NORTH ASIA in Business Class is 75,000 miles (~$1,102)
USA - NORTH ASIA in First Class is 90,000 miles (~$1,323)
USA - SOUTH ASIA in Business Class is 78,000 miles (~$1,146)
USA - SOUTH ASIA in First Class is 99,000 miles (~$1,455)
100% and 125% bonus promotions like this one are fairly common. We have seen and participated in the promotions anywhere in the range of 100%-150% in the past 4.5 years. We have previously found excellent value in buying these miles and redeeming for last-minute Business class tickets to Europe and Asia during peak season.
I do not suggest buying these miles unless you have a need to redeem them right away. That being said, if you are in the middle of planning a trip and wanted to fly First or Business class cabin, this promotion could be a very good value.
Let's look at couple of real-life examples:
1. Business class from New York to Frankfurt on Lufthansa/Swiss Air will set you back 126,000 miles and ~$150. If you purchased the miles @ 1.47 cents per mile this is approximately $2,000.
2. Business class from New York to Tokyo on ANA will set you back 150,000 miles and ~$70. If you purchased the miles @ 1.47 cents per mile this is approximately $2,275.
Have you ever bought Avianca miles before to save money on Business and First class airfare? Do you plan on participating in this promotion? Let us know in the comments section!