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American Airlines has announced its latest miles-purchase promotion, and through December 15, 2018, you can receive up to 120,000 bonus miles. To receive a bonus with this promotion, you will need to purchase a minimum of 12,000 AA miles.
- Promotion is valid on purchases through December 15, 2018
- You need to purchase a minimum of 12,000 miles to receive a bonus
- You can purchase a maximum of 150,000 AA miles per calendar year
- To be eligible, your AA account must be over 30 days old
- Purchase is subject to a $35 transaction processing fee
The number of bonus miles you receive will depend on the number of AA miles you purchase:
- 12,000-24,000 — receive 5,000 bonus miles
- 25,000-34,000 — receive 11,000 bonus miles
- 35,000-49,000 — receive 13,000 bonus miles
- 50,000-74,000 — receive 27,000 bonus miles
- 75,000-99,000 — receive 48,000 bonus miles
- 100,000-149,000 — receive 72,000 bonus miles
- 150,000 miles — receive 120,000 bonus miles
If you maximize this promotion and purchase 150,000 miles, you will receive a total of 270,000 miles (150,000 miles + 120,000 bonus miles) for a total cost of $4,425. This works out to 1.65 cents per mile.
Maximizing The Promotion
Fortunately, AA process miles-purchase transactions themselves, so if you decide to take advantage of the promotion, you can use a credit card with travel as a bonus category to earn even more points. Using the The Platinum Card® from American Express will earn you 5X per dollar spent. Alternatively, making the purchase with your Chase Sapphire Reserve® will earn you 3X per dollar spent.
American has an excellent global network of partners that makes it possible to get to nearly any destination. AAdvantage miles are a great complement to transferrable points like Chase Ultimate Rewards and Amex Membership Rewards.
Although you can book many of the same flights by transferring points to British Airways, Iberia, or Cathay Pacific, American often charges fewer miles—especially for business and first-class tickets. Despite some devaluations over the years, there are still plenty of Advantage sweet spots.
If you are looking for more domestic routes within the US, then taking advantage of the AA Reduced Mileage Awards can also provide excellent value.
We never recommend buying miles speculatively; you are always better off holding cash. On the other hand, if you would consider buying international business or first-class tickets at regular prices, you may be able to save significantly by purchasing miles through this promotion.
Here are a few sample prices from the continental U.S:
- Business class to Europe (round trip) — $2,413.44 to buy miles
- Business class to Hong Kong (one way) — $1,620.63 to buy miles
- First class to Japan (one way) — $1,715.76 to buy miles
American allows you to hold an award ticket for five days. Before you buy miles, make sure to use this option to protect your flights so someone else doesn't take your award seats!
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