Today is the last day that members of Avianca, a Star Alliance airline based in Colombia, can buy LifeMiles with up to a 160% bonus as the current campaign end tonight, January 25, 2023.
LifeMiles members can buy up to 200,000 miles yearly (before any possible bonus), and the maximum bonus under this sale is 160% but with additional incentives of Elite Miles and a 10% rebate on future awards that will be credited back.
Potential buyers should be aware of recent tricks Avianca has used to discourage very lucrative award redemptions (by blocking them).
You can access this offer on the LifeMiles website here.
This time the bonus depends on the number of miles purchased:
- 1,000-20,000 – 140% Bonus
- 21,000-50,000 – 150% Bonus
- 51,000-200,000 – 160% Bonus
In order to activate the maximum 160% bonus, one has to purchase 51,000 miles or more:
The cost of a LifeMiles under this sale, when purchased at a 160% bonus, is 1.27 US cents each. The lowest price at which Avianca sold LifeMiles in 2021/2022 was 1.2 cents so this new offer comes pretty close.
What makes this particular sale attractive is that LifeMiles will also credit back 10% of the next award booking to the account plus, under the new program structure, two purchased miles will count as one elite mile towards status qualification:
I wrote about the new Lifemiles program structure here:
John tried to buy a large amount of Lifemiles to see how the elite qualifying miles would post, and unfortunately, not only did the miles NOT post as Avianca (meaning you can’t qualify for Gold based on mileage purchases alone), but there was also a transaction problem, and miles still haven’t reflected as a positive balance on the account:
This compounds the point we always try to hammer home when it comes to these sales: Avianca is a highly unreliable carrier / program and you can either be in for an easy transaction (like my recent Korea redemptions) or a world of pain, as in this case.
There is no excuse for most of these blunders associated with John’s transactions and pretty much all other problems people experience with them.
Lifemiles has, in the past, amended award charts without any prior notice, is actively blocking award availability and has an absolutely shoddy IT. Trying to cancel or, especially, change an award is a nightmare.
Lifemiles’ most recent miles purchase promotion will end tonight, and the bonus is about the right amount to make it worthwhile, especially with the rebate on future tickets. Miles should be used immediately though, at least in my opinion, to be on the safe side.
Nevertheless, a word of warning here: There have been consistent issues finding award space and issuing tickets using LifeMiles. Clearly, this has been intentional on LifeMiles’ part (less money going out for paying other carriers). I would be very hesitant to purchase LifeMiles unless you have instantaneous use for them, and award space can be booked using Avianca’s miles.
These are the Terms&Conditions under the new campaign:
This promotion is exclusive for LifeMiles members that have received this email directly from LifeMiles. This promotion applies for miles purchases made between January 17th, 2023, and January 25th, 2023 (between 00.00-23.59 GMT -6, El Salvador). The bonus applies as follows: for purchases from 1,000 – 20,000 LifeMiles receive 140%, for purchases from 21,000 – 50,000 LifeMiles receive 150% additional miles, for purchases from 51,000 – 200,000 LifeMiles receive 160% additional miles. The miles must be purchased in multiples of 1,000. The minimum miles to purchase per transaction is 1,000 LifeMiles. The maximum miles to purchase per transaction during this promotion is 200,000 LifeMiles. Additionally, the maximum miles that a member can receive during the promotion, including applicable bonuses is 520,000 miles, minus the miles that the member has previously purchased in 2022 and their respective bonuses. The purchase transaction cannot be made if the amount of miles to purchase and the corresponding bonus, including all miles purchased in 2022, including the bonuses, exceed the 520,000 miles limit, unless the amount of miles to receive without applying the promotional bonus is less or equal to 520,000 miles, in which case, the transaction will be processed but no bonus will be granted, giving such warning to the member. The maximum number of miles to receive by a member through the purchase of miles per calendar year outside of this promotion is 200,000 LifeMiles including any bonus miles received. If the member surpasses the limit, through purchases made during this promotion and other purchases in 2022, considering the bonuses received for those purchases, he or she will not be able to purchase any more miles outside of promotional periods until the next calendar year. Each package of 1,000 LifeMiles is US$33.00 without applicable taxes and US$40.26* including applicable taxes according to country of the mailing address registered in the LifeMiles database. The purchase of miles is not reversible or refundable, except in countries where this right is granted by applicable law, such as the right to retraction in Colombia, in the cases where it applies. The purchase of miles is an immediate execution contract. Once the payment is made, the miles will be accrued immediately on the member’s account. As of that moment, the miles can be used according to the terms and conditions of the LifeMiles Program. Miles are not endorsable. Miles purchase is available through Avianca’s Call Centers, LifeMiles.com and Avianca Information Centers. For residents of Venezuela, it is only available through LifeMiles.com. Only form of payment through Avianca’s Call Center and LifeMiles.com : credit card or international debit card. Cash payments are only allowed at Avianca’s Information Centers. The receipt of the transaction will reflect the total number of miles accrued to the member´s account, including the bonus miles and the total charge for the transaction. The miles purchased and earned with this promotion do not apply to achieve or maintain the Elite status. Does not apply to the Flexible Redemption (LifeMiles + Money) during the payment process of air ticket redemption. Miles purchased, once accrued, can be redeemed in accordance with the conditions specified in the LifeMiles Program Terms and Conditions and the portfolio of products and services available for redemption. The miles rebate applies for LifeMiles members who receive this email directly from LifeMiles and have purchased miles in the 2-for-1 promotion between January 17th, 2023, and January 25th, 2023, and after buying miles in this promotion, redeem air tickets within the dates and conditions herein established. For all cases, the rebate applies only for the following redemption dates: Between January 17th, 2023, and February 17th, 2023. For all cases, the rebate applies only for tickets redeemed with Star Alliance and our Air Partner airlines (Avianca does not apply) in routes from/to United States and Europe. The rebate percentage will be 10% of the miles purchased in 2-for-1 promotion. If there is more one than purchase per member, the rebate will apply to the first redemption made after each purchase. If you redeem more than one air ticket, the rebate applies only for the first redemption that occurs after the promotional miles purchased. The rebate miles will be applied on the member’s account no later than 15 business days after the redemption transaction. LifeMiles reserves the right to revert the accrued miles as rebate if the redemption that originated the rebate is reverted. All conditions for the redemption of air tickets apply.