Star Alliance Miles on Sale for 1.35 Cents Each, Then Redeem Up to 31% Off Awards

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Avianca’s LifeMiles is a Star Alliance frequent flyer program that:

  1. Has a reasonable award chart
  2. Sells miles cheap
  3. Doesn’t add fuel surcharges
  4. Let’s you book partner tickets online
  5. Partners with several banks to let you transfer miles

LifeMiles is one of the best frequent flyer programs for advanced miles and points collectors because they have hidden deals and there are tricks to reduce the price of awards.

I once heard the head of the program give a presentation where he called miles earned by flying “bad miles” and miles sold to partners (like banks) and to customers “good miles.” This frequent flyer program is basically the consolidator for Star Alliance airline excess premium cabin inventory. Lots of ways to get their miles cheap, and use them for seats that their partners aren’t going to sell for cash (saver award inventory).

Yesterday I wrote about the Avianca LifeMiles credit card‘s exceptional offer for a 50% bigger initial bonus than usual using a promo code.

[Snarkier comment than I had intended removed] There’s a 145% bonus buying LifeMiles if you first register for the bigger promotion via One Mile at a Time.

Buying miles for as little as 1.35 cents apiece is as low as LifeMiles goes. That’s an incredible deal on miles, and a reason why I usually prefer to save my transferable bank points to move to other airlines. Although although notably Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card and Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business cardholders have a 25% transfer bonus through the end of the month.

Avianca is an Airline — and Not Just a Frequent Flyer Program That Sells Partner Seats Cheap

Whether you’re snatching up miles from their credit card offer, transferring them in with a bonus, or buying them on the cheap there are great ways to use these miles — domestic awards start at just 3500 miles one way on United, transatlantic awards start at 16,500 miles one way (again, no fuel surcharges), and one of the things I covered last week is Star Alliance award sales.

  • Frequent flyer programs often discount awards on their own airline but rarely partners
  • And when discounts run it’s generally for coach
  • However in this case LifeMiles is currently running a promotion on certain premium cabin routes on Star Alliance airlines

One Mile at a Time was first to point out this new award sale for bookings made by August 14 and travel into the future offering 10% – 31% off specific routes. For instance,

  • Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, or San Francisco to Taipei business class for 64,000 miles
  • Los Angeles or San Francisco to Hong Kong business class for 64,000 miles
  • Los Angeles – Seoul or Shanghai business class for 64,000 miles
  • New York JFK or Washington Dulles to Beijing business class for 67,500 miles (Dulles only) or first class for 81,000 miles (both).

Now is a great time to have LifeMiles, however you’re accumulating them.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Editorial note: any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Comments made in response to this post are not provided or commissioned nor have they been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any bank. It is not the responsibility of any advertiser to ensure that questions are answered, either. Terms and limitations apply to all offers.


  1. I see your 145% registration link goes to “Subscribe now and enjoy this exclusive promo for One Mile at a Time readers.” Maybe TPG doesn’t have his own promo landing page. Maybe, unlike you, he’s not generous about sharing OMAT’s link. Maybe he’s jealous of the bigger bonus. Maybe he’s just a small person.

    Nice explanation of not only how to get cheaper miles but also how to use them for discounted awards.

  2. What Life Miles doesn’t have is a decent English language website. I tried your award sale link but when I clicked on the Eng icon I got the familiar “Page not found, “ which should be their slogan. At least I succeeded in extending expiration with your Capital One transfer idea. However I’m not certain I will ever succeed in using my points.

  3. @Harry Greene–go to the link that Gary posted. At the top right of the page you will see the Esp icon for Espanol. To the very left there is a small space to click and change the Pais (country) to Estados Unidos or Europa. Then, after doing that, click on the English to the right. The page will come up in English. I have been able to access the LM site from Europe and USA in English and have never had a problem booking, although when I try to book from the US I have had to use their call center a couple of times. From Europe I haven’t ever had an issue booking by myself online, even though I am using a US credit card. Also, I have found much better availability within 10 days of my intended departure date, OR 360 days out. Of all my FF programs this is my favorite.

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