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Mileage Plus United - Sale on Buying Miles

I've posted a similar question before because it just confuses the heck out of me: I got an email saying I could buy the max number of miles and receive the max bonus miles for a total of 148,800 miles at a cost of $3499.13. Is this a good deal? I'm only interested in Business or 1st class seating. On the United site a business class ticket LAX-Frankfurt, Germany would cost me over $5K if I bought it. I can find some seats using 70K miles each way. So I'm thinking this email special looks good. Or no?

Posted by
9361 posts

It depends on if you can use them when you want to. Sometimes rewards flights that suit your schedule are hard to find.

Posted by
167 posts

I just used some reward miles on united going to Lisbon ,passing through Frankfort . I look for the 57.5 business class deals. The return trip I have business class seating through the Lufstana mileage and more miles program. This ticket cost $250. Not bad for business class!
However, I have never purchased miles from United. I acquire miles using credit cards.
Once I discovered , years ago, the reward tickets can be one way, this opened up many more options.
Personally , I would not tie up my cash to buy the miles. I use the credit card bonuses and met the spend requirement for expenses that I would make anyway.

Posted by
485 posts

United is always having a sale on miles; you need to crunch the numbers and see if it makes sense. Also, trying to fly business class from LAX to FRA, more than likely it is going to be a Tuesday / Wednesday departure and return.

Posted by
4687 posts

Make sure you look on all pages of Reward Travel offered to you. Lufthansa code-shares with United can be especially cheap, both in dollars and in Miles. You might even find a flight to FRA via another German airport - an unecessary stop, but maybe a dollar or mile saver. Also, Lufthansa prices in dollars can be different than the United prices. Warning: I have thought in the past that United was tracking my past searches and repricing!

Posted by
478 posts

Tom, I have thought the same thing; that United would change their pricing as they were tracking me on their site. So I always sign out and clear my history, hoping this will eliminate the trail.

I accumulate miles through my Mileage Plus credit card and usually earn enough points to get 2 business seats to Europe every 18 months or so. I'm wanting to squeeze in an extra trip and only have miles for 1 ticket. A business class seat would cost me $4-5K, which is more than if I buy the miles.

Posted by
167 posts

Another option is to fly into an airport that has cheaper business class fares.
here on the east coast I can usually find business class fare to Madrid, 3 months out or so, as low as 1,670 USD business class round trip. Lots of low coast European airlines that fly from Madrid to other Europe destinations, some as cheap as in the 45 EU range.
Ever since I got a mysterious upgrade to business class flying out of Vienna on AA, I have decided that I am not willing to go across the pond in anything less than business class. Since I am not wealthy, I have many different strategies to achieve this!

Posted by
796 posts

This does sound like a good deal. We almost always travel first class with business class on occasion. This pricing and mileage sounds great.