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American Express just launched a new transfer bonus to Asia Miles — the loyalty program for Cathay Pacific. This offer may only be targeted to certain members and runs through June 14, 2023.
Often overlooked, Asia Miles can provide fantastic value — particularly on select Oneworld partner redemptions. In this article, we'll take a look at the details of this promotion and some of the opportunities it could present.
Asia Miles Transfer Bonus Key Terms
- Membership Rewards to Asia Miles transfer bonus runs through June 14, 2023.
- If you're targeted, the transfer bonus rates appear in the Membership Rewards points transfer area.
- Transfer Amex Membership Rewards at a 1,000:1,200 ratio, or a 20% bonus on Asia Miles transfers.
- Points conversions are non-reversible, non-refundable, and non-transferable.
- Maximum transfer of 999,000 Membership Rewards points.
- Former Asia Miles transfer bonus terms limited the bonus is only valid for one transfer. That limit isn't stated on this promotion.
- See this link for the full terms and conditions.
Thankfully, transfers that you make should be immediate. As the points come from the bank side, your points and the bonus points should show up together. Based on previous transfers from Amex, your miles should immediately post to your Asia Miles account.
Lucrative Asia Miles Redemption Options
Asia Miles utilizes a distance-based award chart for Cathay Pacific flights, partner-operated flights, and multi-stop itineraries operated by Oneworld partners. At first glance, it's difficult to decipher where the sweet spots might be. But, after tinkering with the award calculator tool a bit, you're likely to find some fun idiosyncrasies. Plus, Asia Miles lets you search award space much further in advance than other programs.
Here are some of our favorite Asia Miles redemptions to consider during this transfer bonus.
U.S. East Coast to Europe in American/British/Iberia/Finnair Business Class
For many travelers, the most practical use of this Asia Miles transfer bonus is flying between the U.S. and Europe. Pricing for a non-stop flight from New York-Kennedy (JFK) to London Heathrow (LHR) has the following prices:
- 27,000 miles in economy.
- 43,000 miles for premium economy.
- 61,000 miles for business class.
- 87,000 miles for first class.
Factoring in the transfer bonus, you'd only need to transfer 36k Membership Rewards points for premium economy or 51k points for business class. If you can find first-class award availability, it'd only set you back 73k Membership Rewards points each way.
The downside? Asia Miles doesn't let you book these awards online. Instead, you'll either need to call Asia Miles. Or, you'll need to fill out an award flight request form and email to an agent to book the award you want.
Los Angeles to Hong Kong in Cathay Pacific Business Class
One of the best ways to use Asia Miles is (unsurprisingly) for award redemptions on Cathay Pacific flights. For example, a one-way business class award from Los Angeles (LAX) to Hong Kong (HKG) costs 70,000 Asia Miles.
If you're for this 20% Asia Miles transfer bonus, you can now book this flight for as little as 58,333 Membership Rewards points. But, you have to transfer in blocks of 1,000 points. So, you'll need to transfer 59k Amex points to Asia Miles for this redemption.
There's a separate award chart for Oneworld multi-carrier trips, which is the same chart used for Round-the-World (RTW) itineraries.
Asia Miles Oneworld Multi-Carrier Award Chart
|Flight distance in miles||Economy award||Business award||First-class award|
Consider the following route:
- Fly from New York to London with American Airlines or British Airways.
- Travel onward to Amman, Jordan with Royal Jordanian.
- Hop over to Doha, Qatar with Qatar Airways and use the same down to Dubai.
- Fly with Cathay Pacific to Hong Kong before flying home to New York.
- You'll get a free stopover in each city and travel 18,781 miles.
- You'll pay 105,000 miles in economy, 165,000 miles in business class, and 260,000 miles in first class (though it won't be available on all segments).
Rules on these awards are found here.
Fly Qatar Qsuite from Perth to Atlanta
Another quirk of the Asia Miles program is that the award chart tops out at journeys of 7,500 miles or more. Translation: you can book an itinerary that's twice that distance for the same price.
This peculiarity lends itself great to redemptions on Qatar Airways. Thankfully, it favors ultra-long-haul flights on a route network that stretches across the globe. With Asia Miles, it's even possible for you to book a one-way Qatar itinerary from Perth to Atlanta via Doha — a journey of over 13,000 miles!
If you're going to fly for that long, you may as well do it in style. Importantly, that's why I'd recommend opting for business class. Both segments are currently operated by aircraft featuring Qsuite, arguably the best business class product in the sky.
This ultra-mega-long haul itinerary goes for 90,000 Asia Miles. But, with a 20% bonus, you could book this once-in-a-lifetime redemption for only 75k Membership Rewards.
Chicago to Sydney via Japan
Unfortunately, finding award availability from the U.S. to Australia can be tough. A common remedy for this is to route through Asia. Thankfully, this opens the door to much more award availability.
Alongside Cathay Pacific, Japan Airlines (JAL) is a great option. It's known for a great onboard product, often making premium-class travelers thankful for the extra travel hours.
You'll pay 42,000 miles in economy, 60,000 in premium economy, 85,000 in business class, and 125,000 miles in first class.
Asia Miles Expiration Policy
Your Asia Miles expire after 18 months of inactivity on your account. Qualifying activity includes spending or buying miles, transferring points into your account, and booking travel with a qualifying partner. Just note that any miles that were earned or transferred before January 1, 2020 still expired after 36 months, regardless of activity.
Also, you can reset the expiration clock via credit cards on this list. Cathay Pacific Asia Miles transfer partners — including American Express Membership Rewards, Capital One Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy.
In conclusion, targeted members can transfer American Express Membership Rewards to Cathay Pacific's Asia Miles with a 20% transfer bonus. The bonus is on the bank's end, so all of the points should show up in your Asia Miles account instantly. Thankfully, there are several great redemption options that become even sweeter with this 20% transfer bonus.
Were you targeted for this transfer bonus? What do you plan to book with it?
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