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Today is the last day of the Flying Blue mileage sale which has been running for a little over a month. The maximum bonus on offer is 75% (which is just about as good as Flying Blue bonuses have been in recent times) and, although Flying Blue awards attract surcharges, this is a currency that when used in the right circumstances can be a great money saver.
Before I go on it’s worth mentioning that Flying Blue miles can also be generated by transfers from all three big US credit card programs (Membership Rewards, Ultimate Rewards, and Citi’s ThankYou program) so if you have a stack of points in any of these programs you may not have a need to buy points in this sale.
If, however, you don’t have a sizeable balance of transferable points burning a hole in your pocket this sale may be the key to getting you to the award you’re looking to book.
- Sale runs through 23:59 CET+1 on 14 January 2020 (TODAY)
- A maximum bonus of 75% is on offer
- Elite members can receive a maximum bonus of 100,000 miles
- Non-elites can receive a maximum bonus of 56,250 miles
Full terms and conditions have been reproduced at the end of this post and can also be found on the sale page.
One of the very best things about this Flying Blue mileage sale is that you can buy miles at the same cost/mile regardless of whether you’re buying 4,000 miles (the smallest amount that triggers the 75% bonus)…
…or 75,000 miles (the highest amount non-elites can buy)
…you will be buying miles at ~1.57 Euro Cents or ~ 1.75 US Cents.
Is This A Good Deal?
When miles purchased at this rate are put towards regular award redemptions the deal isn’t particularly good (the surcharges that Flying Blue adds to its awards are simply too high to make the deals truly worthwhile) but when used for Promo Awards or Special Promo Awards there’s definitely value to be had.
The current crop of Promo Awards are truly woeful so there’s not much chance that you’ll find something within them which catches your eye, but we see great deals between Europe and various parts of the world often enough that it may be worth buying miles in this sale so that you have a large enough balance to snap up a great Promo Award in a future sale (Promo Awards are published monthly).
Examples of great Business Class Promo Awards that we saw in 2019 (all awards are for travel to/from Europe and will have surcharges added):
- Calgary – 39,750 miles/79,500 miles (one-way/roundtrip) (October 2019)
- Chicago – 29,000 miles/58,000 miles (November 2019)
- Edmonton – 26,500 miles/53,000 miles (December 2019)
- Mexico City – 36,000 miles/72,000 miles (October 2019)
- Montreal – 39,750 miles/79,500 miles (October 2019)
- Seattle – 36,000 miles/72,000 miles (October 2019)
- Seychelles – 38,000 miles/76,000 miles (October 2019)
- Toronto – 33,000 miles/64,000 miles (October 2019)
- Vancouver – 44,625 miles/89,250 miles (August 2019)
- Wuhan – 36,000 miles/72,000 miles (September 2019)
All of these awards will see surcharges of between $450 and $650 added to them (Flying Blue is annoying like that) but if you’re buying miles at 1.75 cents each that still means that you can snag some truly fantastic deals despite the abhorrent surcharges.
Hopefully this doesn’t need saying but I’m going to say it anyway before someone complains in the comments section: Just because we’ve seen great Promo Awards appear in the past doesn’t guarantee that we’re going to see great Promo Awards going forward.
If you buy miles in this sale there’s an element of risk to the purchase because there’s no guarantee of what Flying Blue will send our way with the next set of Promo Awards (and the set after that)…I just happen to think that we’re likely to see more great deals this year.
Understand the risk you’re taking before buying.
Flying Blue sells its miles through Points.com so there’s no scope to earn a travel/flight/airline bonus by using a credit card that offers bonus points for shopping in one of those categories (e.g. the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, the refreshed Amex Green Card or the Platinum Card from American Express)
What this means is that this is a good opportunity to use a credit card on which you’re working towards a welcome bonus or to use a credit card that earns you more than a point/dollar in a valuable currency (e.g. the Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express) or even a good cashback card (one that earns 2% or more).
If you’re planning to buy miles to use for regular Flying Blue awards you’re probably going to struggle to get good value out of this sale and I’d advise you to think again.
If, on the other hand, you’re thinking of buying miles to book a Business Class Promo Award or a Business Class Special Edition Promo award you may well be on to a very good thing…but be careful and understand the risks involved.
Full Terms & Conditions Per Flying Blue
During the promotional period, members can receive a maximum bonus of 100,000 Miles. Bonus Miles will be rewarded on transactions made between 11 December 2019 and 14 January 2020, 2359 CET +1, and will be credited to the recipient’s account when the transaction is complete. Miles are sold in units of 2,000 Miles. Elite members may purchase an unlimited number of Miles, while Explorer members may only purchase or receive up to 75,000 Miles in any calendar year, unless a promotion is active in which case it is possible to either purchase or receive Bonus Miles on top of the 75,000 Miles.
Miles are sold to you by Points Inc. Miles will be deposited into your account within 72 hours of purchase. You have the right to withdraw your purchase within 14 days as provided in the Buy and Gift Miles Program Terms and Conditions. To exercise the withdrawal right or to obtain assistance with the Buy and Gift Miles Program, please contact the Customer Service Centre.