Buy LifeMiles With a 160% Bonus (With a Way to Get a 175% Bonus, 1.2¢ Per Mile)

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Avianca's LifeMiles program is famous for selling miles at a significant discount, and its latest promotion is a perfect example of that. Now through June 1, 2021, LifeMiles is running a public promotion offering members a chance to buy LifeMiles with a 160% bonus.

However, if you register through a special One Mile At A Time link, you can get a 175% bonus. With this bonus, you can buy LifeMiles for only 1.2¢ each. That's the best price the program has ever offered!

buy LifeMiles promotion

Note on Buying Miles

We typically don't recommend buying miles without a discount or a plan to use them. For most miles and points currencies, you're much better off building your stash for free through credit-card earnings and transfer partners.

There are a couple of exceptions, though. When you can buy miles at a deep discount, it can make sense to do so if you can book a lucrative award redemption instead of paying for an expensive cash ticket. Moreover, if you only need a few more miles to complete that next, great redemption you're eyeing, purchasing miles can be the quickest, simplest way. Just make sure you do the math ahead of time to ensure you're achieving a value you're comfortable with.

It's also worth noting that Avianca recently filed for re-organizational bankruptcy. While LifeMiles is a separate legal entity from Avianca, the value of LifeMiles could be significantly affected if Avianca ceases to operate and loses its Star Alliance partners.

Key Terms

  • Buy LifeMiles promotion valid through June 1, 2021
  • Buy at least 51,000 LifeMiles and receive 160% bonus miles (or 175% if you register through the OMMAT link)
  • Members can buy miles in increments of 1,000 LifeMiles
  • The maximum miles that a member can receive during this promotion, including applicable bonuses is 520,000 miles (or 550,000 miles with the higher bonus)

The maximum number of miles you can purchase in one transaction to qualify for the special 175% bonus is 200,000 miles. This will set you back $6,600 for a total of 550,000 LifeMiles—1.2¢ per mile.

buy 200,000 LifeMiles with a 175% bonus to get 550,000 LifeMiles

To get the optimal purchase rate, you'll need to buy at least 51,000 LifeMiles. This promotion works on a tiered system:

  • Buy 1,000 – 15,000 LifeMiles: 145% bonus (160% bonus through OMAAT)
  • Buy 16,000 – 50,000 LifeMiles: 155% bonus (170% bonus through OMAAT)
  • Buy 51,000 – 200,000 LifeMiles: 160% bonus (175% bonus through OMAAT)

For example, you can buy 51,000 LifeMiles and get a 89,250 bonus for a total of 140,250 LifeMiles for $1,683. That's 1.2¢ per mile:

Buy 51k LifeMiles with a 175% bonus

When Does Buying Avianca LifeMiles Make Sense?

Thanks to a reasonable award chart and minimal fuel surcharges, LifeMiles is among our favorite airline currencies for premium-class redemptions across the globe. As the currency of Avianca, Colombia's flag carrier, LifeMiles can be used for award bookings on any of the airline's Star Alliance partners. That includes partners with fabulous premium products like Lufthansa, All Nippon Airways, and EVA.

Let's take a look at some of our favorite sweet spots of the program to demonstrate the kind of value possible when buying LifeMiles for 1.2¢ apiece.

Los Angeles — Tokyo in ANA First Class

  • Mileage Rate: 90,000 LifeMiles each way ($5.60 taxes from LAX-HND, $49.80 taxes from HND-LAX)
  • Typical Cash Price: $17,369 round-trip
  • Redemption Rate: 9.6 cents per mile (based on a round-trip)
  • Cost to Purchase Necessary Miles (at 1.2¢ each): $1,080 each way

Chicago — Zurich in Swiss Business Class

  • Mileage Rate: 63,000 LifeMiles each way ($5.60 taxes from ORD-ZRH, $53.21 taxes from ZRH-ORD)
  • Typical Cash Price: $3,202 round-trip
  • Redemption Rate: 2.5 cents per mile (based on a round-trip)
  • Cost to Purchase Necessary Miles (at 1.2¢ each): $756 each way

Washington D.C. — Dubai in Turkish Business Class

  • Mileage Rate: 78,000 LifeMiles ($12.91 taxes from IAD-DXB, $55.04 taxes from DXB-IAD)
  • Typical Cash Price: $3,762 round-trip
  • Redemption Rate: 2.4 cents per mile (based on a round-trip)
  • Cost to Purchase Necessary Miles (at 1.2¢ each): $936 each way

Maximize Your Purchase

One of the great things about purchasing LifeMiles is that Avianca processes the transaction directly. This means that point purchases will code as airfare, meaning that the purchase will be eligible for the travel category bonus on many cards. Some of the best cards to use would be:

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Annual Fee$95
Welcome Bonus Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn a $50 statement credit towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
Our #1 recommended beginners rewards card featuring an 80,000-point signup bonus after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. This card comes with great benefits and earns valuable Ultimate Rewards points.
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
  • 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide
  • 1X point per dollar spent on all other purchases

Other Ways to Earn Avianca LifeMiles

While cheap miles are great, an even cheaper way to grow your collection of LifeMiles is by converting flexible bank currencies. Avianca partners with four of the five major transferrable currencies:

If you're a devoted Avianca frequent flyer or a hardcore LifeMiles fan, you could also consider applying for an Avianca co-branded credit card. Puerto Rico's Banco Popular offers two co-branded credit cards available to American citizens, and both are currently offering a standard sign-up bonus after completing only one transaction:

Avianca Vuela Visa® Card
Avianca Vuela Visa® Card
Annual Fee$149
Welcome Bonus 40,000 welcome bonus after first purchase
  • 40,000 Bonus LifeMiles after first card use
  • Earn 3 LifeMiles per $1 spent on Avianca purchases
  • Earn 2 LifeMiles per $1 spent at gas stations and grocery stores
  • Earn 1 LifeMile per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 15% discount on purchases of miles with Multiply Your Miles
  • Free additional piece of baggage for travel between the United States and Central America
  • A 50% discount on an award ticket redeemed for travel to Central America or Colombia from the United States after $12,000 spent each year
  • An additional 50% discount on an award ticket redeemed for travel to Central America or Colombia from the United States after $24,000 spent each year
  • 0% Introductory offer for 12 months on Balance Transfers
  • You must be an Avianca LifeMiles member to apply
  • If you are not already a LifeMiles member, create your account here: www.lifemiles.com
  • Chip-enabled card provides added security
  • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver
  • Travel Accident Insurance
  • Protection against unauthorized charges
  • Emergency Card Replacement
  • Online Account Management
  • Electronic Statements
  • Auto-pay option
  • 3X LifeMiles per $1 spent on Avianca purchases
  • 2X LifeMiles per $1 spent on gas stations & grocery stores
  • 1X LifeMile per $1 spent on all other purchases

Final Thoughts

Plenty of airlines and hotel have been offering buy points and miles promotions recently. But, none come close to this 175% buy LifeMiles bonus! It's easy to get more than 1.2¢ of value through LifeMiles' award chart. While it's a difficult time to plan travel, it might be a while before you get a better opportunity to buy LifeMiles at such a discount. If you've got a plan, now's the time to go for it.

Are you going to buy Avianca LifeMiles with a 175% bonus?

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Comments

  • Avatar

    Itching to travel and very tempted. I’ve never used Lifemiles and this could be an opportunity to try it but am still a little wary about the airlines bankruptcy issue. Might be worthwhile to start with a smallish purchase and wait for international travel to open up a little more before investing in more Lifemiles.

  • Avatar

    I’m tempted to buy as I’ve almost finished my Avianca miles.
    I’ll decide some days before the expiration of the promotion.

  • Avatar

    LM keeps offering these great promotions, but they only matter if the miles can be redeemed on *A airlines. With Avianca bankrupt, I’m not sure if other airlines would accept their miles and without that LM is useless, even if it’s technically a separate entity. Does anyone have a recent experience of flying (not just booking) *A flights using LM?

  • Avatar

    My experience with Avianca ticketing a Swiss flight:

    Swiss had schedule change on short segment of ZUR to CDG and canceled itinerary sending it back to Avianca to rebook.

    Avianca did not inform me for a week by which time all reasonable business class redemptions during time period I need to fly were gone.

    The Avianca agent told me that refunds take at least three months and they were assessing a point redeposit fee and deducting it from my refund even though the cancelation of due to their bad customer service in failing to contact me immediately to rebook the short segment of itinerary.

    I filed a dispute and expect Chase to agree with me.

    Avianca says you can make ticket changes online are false. You can not make changes on Avianca partner tickets.

    It is nearly impossible to reach an Avianca agent. Expect hold times over an hour and repeated disconnects.

    Then the agent or bad IT system will fail to complete transaction.

    I fear that this sale at this discount means Avianca may be planning bankrupting the LifeMiles program shortly and the 180K in points I have stuck there will shortly be lost.

    Based solely on my own experience I accurately describe Avianca as the airline where the inept report to the unethical.

  • Avatar

    Seems most of the responses are positive. I won’t be in the market now, but might need to check out LifeMiles closer in the future.

  • Avatar

    Very attractive offer from Lifemiles. Lifemiles are a great way to book STAR alliance flights all over the world. I once flew my son to Latvia on Lifemiles….it’s a great program!

  • Avatar

    1.2c is a nice deal. Seems like the points are at full value.

  • Avatar
    Andre Monteiro says:

    That is a good deal! Plenty of options to use the LifeMiles! Thank you

  • Avatar

    Swiss business class with paid points seems like a great opportunity. Haven’t bought life miles previously, but this is certainly a prompt!

  • Avatar

    I do love Lifemiles (and this has been a perfect way to extend my miles expiration with them), plus their interface allows proper mix and match segment by segment. But availablilty is all over the place!

  • Avatar

    Great post. Thanks You

  • Avatar
    Stephen MacMIllan says:

    We love AwardWallet and it is an easy way to keep AA miles from expiring. Thanks

  • Avatar

    Tempting offer but as someone based in Canada and the tight expiration period, it may be best for me to pass on it this time.

  • Avatar

    I’ve been getting great value from Lifemiles. It’s a little quirky to book and use them, though.

  • Avatar
    ROBERTO MAURO says:

    The purchase of miles is complicated for those of us who are outside the United States, the travel bans continue, but the offer is very tempting. The issue of airline bankruptcy should be well analyzed, I think. Greetings.

  • Avatar

    good deal, but unfortunately nothing like the hay days of double points – possible could be worth revisiting especially under Covid times

  • Avatar

    I’ve been focusing more on lifemiles since other Star Alliance partners have devaluated their programs in recent years.

  • Avatar

    Last time the bonus was 200% if I remember well.
    Anyway, I could buy just 1000 miles to postpone the expiration of my miles.

  • Avatar
    angelo fonseca says:

    lifemiles was already better. for being part of the star alliance, it is an advantage.

  • Avatar
    Jessica Arbai says:

    Yes, agreed this is a method to maintaining one’s miles from expiring! Thank you for posting

  • Avatar

    Good deal!. But maybe just buy small for extending expiry date.

  • Avatar

    My fear remains the same. Step 1: Pandemic limits travel company’s value. Step 2: Find revenue by selling miles. Step 3: Devalue miles 1 year later. Buying miles just isn’t worth it right now except for trips you are booking right now.

  • Avatar

    This is simply a great deal. At 1.1c a mile, you are not only breaking even, but charging it to your credit card means you can get extra points on your preferred rewards card. Great to do if only to keep your miles from expiring!

  • Avatar
    Manuel jorge Martins filho says:

    With covid 19 and a drastic decrease in flights worldwide, airlines have been heavily indebted to airplanes on the ground and many are using the strategy of encouraging customers to reactivate miles. Today I think it’s a risk because we don’t know which companies will survive, I would only do that if I was sure of returning to flights and also of the financial health of the company that I did reactivating the miles

  • Avatar

    Very attractive deal but their website is pathetic and it is very difficult to navigate for award ticket on star alliance

    I will pass.

    Thanks but no thanks

  • Avatar

    Its a nice deal but only if you are sure you are flying soon otherwise you never know if they will devalue those Avianca LifeMiles again

  • Avatar

    This is a great way to keep your account active too since you can buy as few as 1,000 miles and still get the 2x bonus. Usually to get the full bonus they require a much bigger purchase.

  • Avatar

    Patrick, thanks for this great post!

    The examples you gave are ridiculous lower compared to the typical cash price. I am a bit skeptical about mileage programs and buying miles with cash, but I think it is an interesting option to consider looking at these examples

  • Avatar

    Even after devaluations, Lifemiles could make sense if you have high degree of certainty of flying. I’d not buy speculatively, especially since it’s unclear to me whether Avianca folds entirely before I get to use them

  • Avatar

    Thanks for this write-up, Patrick. I’m thinking about buying some LifeMiles for a post-covid flight in ANA F to HND. Avianca’s site shows limited availability next fall. Does anyone have anecdotal data points regarding the ease/difficulty of rescheduling via Avianca? I’ve never used them for an award booking before.

  • Avatar

    Thanks for including the cost to purchase miles per segment. I’ve done the math in my head and decided against purchasing in the past, but seeing it in print crystallizes my assumptions. I have paid ~$1600 for a business class flight, but that was in part due to the huge mileage and status earnings. I can’t justify that cost without those benefits, especially in these times.

  • Avatar

    Boy, they are trying to raise money and then some. However they just seem to be creating a huge debt on their books. This would be a terrific deal for someone if they can actually use these points in the next few months. Otherwise it’s just a huge risk. I certainly see devaluation coming

  • Avatar
    IGNACIO MEDINA says:

    Loyalty programs being a money maker again. In most companies, they are separated entities so if the airline collapses, they remain alive.

  • Avatar

    This airline seems to be in the business of selling miles more than flying an airline. It seems like the airline business is a money loser but the loyalty programs are a money maker.

  • Avatar

    Lots of promotions but I am too afraid to get on a flight 🙁

  • Avatar

    LifeMiles used to be very good award option before the award charts were devalued few times. You can still can find LifeMiles useful to utilize for certain routings.

  • Avatar

    You can tell if you’re targeted by entering the number of miles you’d like to purchase and seeing if a 200% bonus is reflected on the checkout screen.

  • Avatar
    Pablo Quilis says:

    I will not buy any miles during this COVID season. Avianca is now in chapter 11 and I think they are trying to make some cash quick.

  • Avatar

    It is a very tempting offer! Even though the situation not isn’t the best for travelling one could use the point and book something next year when things are slowly getting back to normal.

  • Avatar

    This is certainly a very tempting offer, but i’m already sitting on around 300K Lifemiles and given the COVID situation and Avianca’s financial situation, i would prefer to use my current stash before collecting more LM

  • Avatar
    Juan Ignacio says:

    Excellent promo!!! Wish AA or AF do the same thing

  • Avatar

    Now if only AA would offer this kind of deal.

  • Avatar

    I would like to buy some LM miles but i am afraid it’s will be expiry as Covid-19 . Hope that bad virus gone asap. So want to go to travel now!!!

  • Avatar

    Avianca website is not showing Turkish Airlines option on LifeMiles website. Turkish cannot be booked using LM anymore? :/

    • Avatar

      I haven’t heard of any changes there. Maybe it’s just a temporary website issue. Booking by phone with Avianca isn’t much fun, but it should be a workaround for an urgent booking.

      • Avatar

        I’ve checked several dates, but TK is not showing anywhere. Not under Star, not even in Smart Search, all other airlines are there but not TK. Can you check?

        • Avatar

          Hi there. I’m sorry for the delay getting back to you. I’m seeing results for TK via lifemiles for May 11, 2021 (IST-FRA). I suppose maybe they are limiting some routes or schedules have been blocked due to COVID restrictions. Regardless, I don’t think there is a long term change happening with TK bookings using lifemiles.

    • Avatar

      I just check for some think and Turkish was available for my search

  • Avatar

    this is really tempting but I’m still sitting on a pile of Lifemiles that due to the current situation won’t be put to use so soon as I would hope……

  • Avatar

    I’m very tempted to buy at the 25K level (equates to 75K with the bonus) but I obviously still has qualms about it given Avianca’s current financial state (they may be separate from LifeMiles but it’s still something to consider)

  • Avatar

    Wow so they are backstabbing people who bought miles just a couple of months ago with a substantially lower bonus?
    They should at least provide refunds to those who bought the miles with a higher cost so they can re-purchase them with a better bonus this time.

  • Avatar
    Derek Judson says:

    I will be buy some points cause it’s very cheap and very useful to redeem Star Alliance Flight and very useful to redeem business class flight ticket. Great!

  • Avatar

    Another dangling carrot.
    I’d love to be a buyer but can’t see myself planning any travel for quite a while yet.

  • Avatar

    I am not planning on buying any Life Miles.
    Who knows when Americans will be able to book travel to Europe again?

  • Avatar
    Juan Ignacio says:

    It was a good deal sadly I saw late the article… but be aware Avianca’s situation is not ok at all in Brazil and Peru they declared bankruptcy… despite the LifeMiles program is a separate business from the Avianca’s holding it could be drastically impacted in the future.

  • Avatar

    Avianca applied for bankruptcy.

    • Avatar

      Do keep in mind that LifeMiles is a separate entity from Avianca the airline. It’s certainly true that the loyalty program could be negatively impacted in the future. It’s probably wise to pass unless you can use the miles in the near future.

  • Avatar

    This is an amazing deal. I can see why it might be a good idea to buy miles even if I’m not traveling. I’m curious on their strategy of the large bonus. Wondering if this will devalue their miles or not.

  • Avatar

    I’ve bought the minimum amount: 1000+1550 miles for 33 USD.
    This also in order to extend the validity of the miles I have with Aviance LifeMiles.

  • Avatar
    Mike Johnson says:

    it’s confirmed Expiration date Jun 30, 2021, 12 m after this purchase.

    not bad to extend miles.

  • Avatar
    Michaelj1 says:

    I have no present need for this so I will be passing on this deal.

  • Avatar

    Gracias por la información!

  • Avatar

    I usually don’t buy miles, but I’ll see if it makes sense here!

  • Avatar

    It’s interesting to purchase miles when you don’t have enough from credit card usage and it’s cheaper to complement instead of dealing with the full price ticket. I may be do it when things get better.

  • Avatar

    This has always been a program that can definitely be used to advantage but this is just not the right time for me.
    Since the best value comes from redemptions for business class flights, the difficulty of finding those seats makes it not such a great deal as it initially seems.

  • Avatar

    As a general rule of thumb: If it’s an amazing deal but you don’t need it = it’s a bad deal.

    But if you have an upcoming trip planned, this seems like an amazing deal! Their last promotion was for a 40% bonus ($0.01375 per mile), so this is 6% better than their previous deal!

  • Avatar

    While a seemingly nice bonus at 155%, buying miles from an airline that has filed for bankruptcy seems like a risky move to me.

  • Avatar
    Mike Johnson says:

    After purchase, the Expiration date is not extended but still the same .

    This is very very strange .

  • Avatar

    It is too bad that you cannot redeem LH Group first class awards unless you are a top-tier M&M member nowadays.

  • Avatar

    LM have communicated in writing that they will keep the award chart. So not just a promise to OMAAT.

  • Avatar
    matt ward says:

    Why on earth are you showing the mileage rates for one-way but the cash price for round trip?

    • Avatar

      Don’t worry, we were comparing apples and apples! The mileage bookings can be booked as one-ways, so we wanted to show the one-way rates. For the cash fares, the round-trip prices are better than booking one-way. We based the redemption rate calculation off of the round-trip cash price and round-trip miles price. However, I clarified in the post to show how we got to these numbers.

      • Avatar
        arran wallace says:

        i so want to take this deal -its great value! but worried that miles will become useless if avianca go bankrupt..any advice?

        • Avatar

          Well, Avianca has already filed for bankruptcy. Thankfully, LifeMiles is a separate entity, so there’s some separation. Still, I’d only be buying LifeMiles if there was an award I was ready to book with LifeMiles.