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Avianca is offering a 115% bonus when you transfer your LifeMiles to another account now through December 15, 2022. Although there are fees to transfer miles, this promotion offers a cheap way to increase your LifeMiles balance — as long as you already have miles in your account or transfer miles in from a transfer partner.
Key Terms to this LifeMiles Transfer Promotion
- The promotion is valid for transfers through December 15, 2022.
- Receive a 115% bonus when you transfer LifeMiles from one account to another.
- Transferring miles incurs a charge of $15 per 1,000 miles transferred.
- You can transfer a maximum of 75,000 miles per year.
- Miles can be transferred to any other LifeMiles account.
Taking full advantage of the promotion and transferring 75k miles, you will end up with 161,250 miles (75,000 miles transferred + 86,250 LifeMiles bonus). Transfers cost $15 per 1,000 miles transferred, so the total cost of the transfers would be $1,125.
This means that you are effectively purchasing 86,250 LifeMiles for $1,125. Crunching the numbers, this works out to 1.3 cents per mile, which is a great value. That's right around the cost we've recently seen LifeMiles sell miles recently.
Unless you're feeling incredibly generous, the idea here is to transfer miles to an account belonging to a close friend or family member. Since Avianca lets you redeem awards for anyone, moving miles from one account to another shouldn't limit your options for who can travel on an award ticket.
How Good is This Deal?
If you have a LifeMiles balance to transfer, this promotion can produce outstanding value. Remember LifeMiles has various sweet spots, especially on partner awards. At a price of 1.3 cents per mile, sweet spots with the promotion include:
- $783 for 60,000 miles for business-class flights from the eastern U.S. to Europe Zone 1 (includes the UK)
- $1,135 for 87,000 miles for first-class flights from the eastern U.S. to Europe
- $978 for 75,000 miles for business-class flights from the eastern U.S. to North Asia (including China and Hong Kong)
- $1,174 for 90,000 miles for first-class flights from the eastern U.S. to North Asia (including China and Hong Kong)
This is excellent value, especially if you can use your miles to book a Lufthansa first-class award from the U.S. to Europe. Effectively paying $1,135 for a first-class ticket on Lufthansa is simply unbeatable. The ticket normally sets you back at least 5 or 6 times the price.
What If I Don't Have Any LifeMiles?
If you don't already have a significant Avianca LifeMiles balance, you'll need to acquire miles before sharing them. Thankfully, Avianca frequently sells miles at a big discount — such as the 170% transfer bonus available through December 2, 2022.
To buy 75,000 miles without a bonus, you'd spend around $2,475 — which comes out to a terrible 3.3 cents per mile. If you buy 75,000 miles and then share them through the current promo, your net cost of buying miles drops to 2.18 cents per mile. You'd pay $2,475 to buy 75,000 LifeMiles and then $1,125 to generate 90,000 LifeMiles for a total cost of $3,600 for 165,000 LifeMiles.
Thankfully, there's a better option than buying miles at full price. You can transfer points from American Express Membership Rewards (1:1), Citi ThankYou Points (1:1), Capital One (1:1), or even Brex Cash (1:1) to LifeMiles. Marriott Bonvoy points also transfer to Avianca at a 3:1 transfer ratio, but those transfers may take 1 day or more to post to your LifeMiles account.
Even better, LifeMiles is currently running a 15% transfer bonus from American Express Membership Rewards points through December 7.
This option is certainly worth considering if you have a substantial balance with one of these rewards programs, but you should only do so with a specific award in mind. Since transfers are non-reversible, you'll give up lots of alternative options when you convert them into LifeMiles.
If you have a LifeMiles balance, and you are looking for a specific redemption then this promotion can be a no-brainer; it's hard to beat buying LifeMiles at 1.3 cents apiece. However, think carefully before buying miles speculatively, no matter how good the deal is.
Since this strategy requires transferring miles to another account, we should reiterate that (unless you're sharing miles as a gift) you want to transfer the miles to a trusted friend, family member, or another LifeMiles account you control.
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