LifeMiles Star Alliance award sale: "buy" business class to Asia for as low as $800

As part of their Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, LifeMiles, which is Avianca's frequent flyer program, is offering both Star Alliance award sales and a purchased miles sale.  The award sale includes business class travel to popular destinations in Asia and Europe, including the following one-way:

  • Chicago to Taipei in business class for 64,000 miles
  • Houston to Taipei in business class for 64,000 miles
  • Los Angeles to Hong Kong in business class for 64,000 miles
  • Los Angeles to Seoul Incheon in business class for 60,000 miles
  • Los Angeles to Shanghai in business class for 64,000 miles
  • Los Angeles to Taipei in business class for 67,500 miles
  • New York to Beijing in first class for 81,000 miles
  • Newark to London in business class for 48,000 miles
  • San Francisco to Hong Kong in business class for 64,000 miles
  • San Francisco to Taipei in business class for 64,000 miles
  • Washington to Beijing for 67,500 miles in business class or 81,000 miles in first class
Redeem LifeMiles for business class on Eva Airlines

Normally, business class from the U.S. to Asia is 75k each way, so these are pretty good discounts.  Eva Airline awards to Taipei, Asiana awards to Seoul, and Air China awards to China are typically not hard to come by, especially during the off-season.  And LifeMiles is one of the only programs that imposes no fuel surcharges period on all award flights regardless of the carrier(s).  For the full list of discounted awards, visit their sale page.  The sale ends on December 9th, but you can book trips past the end date as the tickets just need to be booked by December 9th.  There are also a good number of domestic discounts in economy class, including the following:

  • Chicago to Houston in economy for 9,000 miles
  • Los Angeles to San Francisco in economy for 5,500 miles
  • Newark to Boston in economy for 4,500 miles
  • Newark to Chicago in economy class for 5,000 miles
  • Philadelphia to Chicago in economy for 5,000 miles

How to earn LifeMiles

You can earn LifeMiles by either flying with them or with their Star Alliance partners.  LifeMiles is a 1:1 transfer partner for both Amex Membership Rewards and Citi ThankYou Points.  Through December 11th, Citi TYP is offering a 25% bonus for transfers to LifeMiles, which means that you could fly one-way LAX-ICN in business class for only 48k or SFO-TPE for only 52k Citi TYP.

LifeMiles purchased miles sale

Through December 3rd, LifeMiles is offering a 150% bonus on purchased award miles, which is their best offer of the year.  You can buy anywhere from 1k to 200k miles pre-bonus, and they'd come out to 1.32 cents each after the bonus.  So you could essentially buy enough miles for business class to Asia for ~$800 each way, which comes out to a great deal considering that these flights are typically much more expensive.  LifeMiles also processes miles purchases directly, so you would also earn bonus points with your credit card that earns bonuses for travel and flights booked directly with the airline.  Cards like the Amex Platinum (5x) and Chase Reserve (3x) would earn you a good deal of cashback on returns for the mileage purchases.

To take advantage of the 150% purchased bonus offer, first register for the promo with your LifeMiles account, which can be created for free if you don't already have one.  Then you should automatically see the increase when you buy the miles.

How to book award flights

LifeMiles Star Alliance award flights can be booked online, which is the definitive preferred options since their call centers can be horrendous.  Before committing to transferring or buying LifeMiles, it's best to ensure that your desired award flights are available on their website first.  LifeMiles does impose a standard $25 booking fee for all awards, but there are no close-in ticketing or fuel surcharge fees.  Cancellations will set you back $50 for travel within the same region (e.g. U.S. domestic flight) or $200 for travel between multiple regions (e.g. U.S. to Asia).

Bottom line

This is a pretty good award and purchased miles sale for LifeMiles.  If you've been wanting to hit up any of the discounted destinations but didn't want to fork out the $4k each way for business class, then this would definitely be a good offer to take advantage of assuming you can find flight award availability.



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