The last time US Airways offered its much-discussed 100 percent bonus for purchasing miles was late last year.
When that offer was not extended—as it had been on several previous occasions—there was some question as to whether consumers had seen the last of the uber-lucrative promotion. Perhaps the airline had decided that the bonus was just too generous.
After a couple of months’ hiatus, however, the offer is back, albeit with a new wrinkle.
Through March 31, US Airways Dividend Miles members can earn a 100 percent bonus on purchased miles, as follows:
- Earn a 75 percent bonus for all purchases, up to the maximum.
- Earn an additional 25 percent bonus by downloading, installing, and using the Dividend Miles toolbar at least three times during the promotion period.
A maximum of 50,000 miles are eligible for the bonus, so 100,000 miles may be purchased for $1,375 if both requirements are fulfilled to earn the full 100 percent bonus.
A couple of restrictions to bear in mind:
- “Dividend Miles accounts less than 12 days old are not permitted to Buy, Share or Gift miles.”
- “Members who did not have a United States or Puerto Rico address on file as of 2/1/2011 are not eligible to receive the 25 percent additional bonus regardless of address updates.”
Deal or No Deal
Compared to US Airways’ past 100 percent bonuses, this one suffers slightly from the requirement to test drive the airline’s toolbar to earn the final 25 percent.
Still, that’s an easy enough hoop to jump through, and well worth the time and energy for anyone interested in cost-effectively scoring a large cache of US Airways miles.
And this promotion delivers solid value.
For perspective, 100,000 miles is enough for a restricted business-class award ticket to Europe or South America, on US Airways or a Star Alliance partner airline.
A quick check on Travelocity showed business-class fares to Frankfurt, Germany, from Los Angeles as high as $10,918 for nonstops on United and Lufthansa, and $8,871 for one-stop flights on US Airways.
Pay $1,375 for a flight that would otherwise cost $10,918? Even factoring in the hassle of finding award seats available for booking at the restricted 100,000-mile level, that looks like a sweet deal.
Reader Reality Check
Have you taken advantage of previous US Airways buy-miles bonuses?
If so, how did you redeem the purchased miles? How available were award seats?
This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.