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Flying Blue is running a new mileage sale in which it has brought back the very best bonus that we have ever seen the program offer when selling miles. A lot of Flying Blue members appear to have been targeted for a 100% bonus, but a fortunate few, a bonus of 120% awaits.
It should be noted 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) but when you see the price you can buy miles at in this sale, a transfer may not appear too tempting.
- Sale runs through 23:59 CET+1 on 21 December 2022
- A maximum bonus of 120% is on offer
- Elite members can receive a maximum bonus of 360,000 miles
- Non-elites can receive a maximum bonus of 120,000 miles
Full terms and conditions can be found on the sale page.
This is what I’m seeing in an account targeted for a 120% bonus:
- Buy 2,000 miles and get no bonus
- Buy 4,000 – 10,000 miles and get a 50% bonus
- Buy 12,000 – 22,000 miles and get a 70% bonus
- Buy 24,000 – 100,000 miles and get a 120% bonus
Link to sale page.
As we’ve seen with this year’s British Airways and Iberia sales, Flying Blue now appears to price its mileage sales in the currency of the country in which a member’s account is registered in and there doesn’t appear to be a way to change this.
What this means is that the cost of miles will vary according to where an account is registered and as usual, US members get a worse deal than members whose accounts are based in Europe or the UK.
Apart from the huge bonus that’s on offer, there’s one other great aspect of this sale – you can buy miles at the same great cost/mile regardless of whether you’re buying 24,000 miles (the smallest amount that triggers the 120% bonus) or if you’re buying 100,000 miles (the highest amount non-elites can buy).
If you have an account registered in the US, you are likely to be offered the chance to buy up to 220,000 miles for a total cost of $3,050. This would see you paying ~1.39 cents per mile.
If, like me*, you have your account based in the UK, you may be offered the chance to buy up to 220,000 miles for a total cost of £2,230 which would see you paying ~1.01 pence (~1.23 cents) per mile.
*As I have an address in the UK, that’s where I register all my European loyalty program accounts to ensure that I get the better deals.
Is this a good deal?
As always, no one should be buying miles without a plan for how they’re going to be used in the near to medium term, but, if you can find the awards that work for you, you’re highly unlikely to be able to buy Flying Blue miles any cheaper than this in the near future.
Also, quite a few people value some of the transferable currencies that can be converted to Flying Blue Miles (e.g. Amex Membership Rewards Points) at more than what Flying Blue Miles are being sold for in this sale so, if you’re one of those people and you were considering a points transfer to Flying Blue, it may be a good idea to think again.
Keep in mind that Flying Blue employs dynamic award pricing (which can work in a traveler’s favor when cash prices are low) and it loves to add surcharges to its awards which have to be taken into account.
Don’t forget that the latest round of Flying Blue Promo awards has recently gone live and while there isn’t exactly a plethora of Business Class awards flying around (no pun intended), some of the promo awards may be useful in conjunction with this mileage sale.
Personally speaking, I think that 1.23 and 1.39 cents both represent a very good cost/mile at which to buy Flying Blue miles, but, again, I cannot stress enough how this will only ever be a great deal if you can be sure to use the miles in the short term.
If you’re looking to travel now (or soon) and can see that awards are available to book for cabins and dates that suit you, do the math (don’t forget to include any surcharges) and, if the math works in your favor, buy as many miles as you need because they’re unlikely to get any cheaper any time soon.
Use the right credit card
Flying Blue mileage sales are processed by Points.com so that eliminates the 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 Platinum Card® from American Express). With that option closed off, this makes this sale a good opportunity to use a credit card on which you’re working towards a big welcome bonus (like the current offer on the Citi Premier® credit card).
If you’re not working towards a card’s welcome bonus, the Citi® Double Cash credit card which offers 2% cash back on all purchases would be one of the better options to use.
Do your due diligence and you won’t go far wrong in this sale.
- Check that awards are actually available on the route you’d like to fly and on dates you can fly.
- Check how many miles you need
- Check what taxes and surcharges Flying Blue will impose on the award booking
- Work out the actual full cost of buying miles and booking the award.
Only if the deal still looks good after all of the above should you buy Flying Blue Miles in this sale…otherwise just move on.
Lastly, don’t forget to check what entry restrictions are in place for whatever destination you’d like to visit. A lot of destinations still require you to be able to show proof of a negative Covid test taken before departure and some may even require you to self-isolate, so don’t go booking any trips before you’ve done your research.