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The latest American Airlines mileage sale is offering flyers a discount of up to 50% on the regular price of miles and while this isn’t (by any stretch of the imagination) a particularly amazing sale, miles purchased at 1.88 cents can have their uses. Sadly, you have just hours left to decide if this sale can save you some cash.
- Buy 1,000 miles – get no discount
- Buy 2,000 – 4,000 miles – get 10% off
- Buy 5,000 – 24,000 miles – get 15% off
- Buy 25,000 – 79,000 miles – get 20% off
- Buy 80,000 – 104,000 miles – get 25% off
- Buy 105,000 – 149,000 miles – get 30% off
- Buy 150,000 – 300,000 miles – get 50% off
The key terms are as follows:
- The sale runs through to 11:59:59pm CT November 28, 2022 (TODAY)
- The miles don’t count towards elite status
- Members may purchase, or receive as a gift, a maximum combined total of 300,000 AAdvantage miles in this sale.
Full terms and conditions can be found on the promotion page (here)
As is often the case with American’s mileage sales, the cost per mile doesn’t vary within each of the sale bands so as long as you purchase at least 150,000 miles in this sale…
… you’ll be buying miles at the lowest rate this sale offer (~1.88 cents/mile).
To put this sale in a bit of context, 1.75 cents/mile is around the best rate that we’ve seen American sell it miles in recent years, but it’s worth keeping in mind that it has been a while since we’ve seen a rate as low as that one on offer so 1.88 cents/mile isn’t terrible. It’s not amazing, but it’s also one of the better rates that American Airlines has published in the past 12 months.
Obviously, if you have no immediate use for AAdvantage Miles, you shouldn’t be taking part in this sale.
No matter how good a deal may appear to you, it’s never a good idea to stockpile miles and because the AAdvantage program is notoriously bad at releasing premium cabin award space, that is doubly true here.
Having said that, if you can find awards that you’re happy to book and you have run through the numbers to check that buying miles at 1.88 cents each will save you some cash, go ahead and buy as many miles as you need.
Assuming AAdvantae awards are available, a round-trip, Business Class fare to Europe would start at ~$2,162 + taxes/fees (115,000 miles), a round-trip, Business Class to the furthest reaches of South America to which American Airlines offers a service would also cost $2,162 + taxes/fees (115,000 miles) and a round-trip, Business Class fare to Asia would start at $2,256 + taxes/fees (120,000 miles) and all of those represent respectful deals.
There are also the partner awards to consider. If you can find Business Class or First Class award availability on the likes of Qatar Airways, JAL, Cathay Pacific, or Etihad (Qatar Airways will probably be your best bet) there could be value to be had out of buying miles in this sale.
Which credit cards to use
American Airlines sells its own miles (the transactions code as travel/airline purchases) so, if you can see a good reason for buying AAdvantage Miles in this promotion, make sure you use a credit card that will earn you a travel/airline category bonus like the Platinum Card® from American Express (review) – terms apply.
If miles & points aren’t what you’re looking to collect right now, a good cash back card like the Citi® Double Cash Card (review) is a very good alternative.
For a lot of people, buying miles in this sale won’t make a lot of sense, but for anyone looking to book a partner award this may be a sale to consider… just make sure you stick to these simple rules:
- Work out how much the miles would cost to buy
- Find the cash fare for the same route and the same dates
- Compare the two
That should give you an indication of how good or bad the deal is.
If the numbers work in your favor you should buy as many miles as you need but, if they don’t, don’t try to persuade yourself that the deal is a good one anyway (the numbers don’t lie) – keep your credit cards in your wallet and move on.