Wednesday, May 7, 2014

US Airways 40,000 miles credit card sign-up bonus and 100% bonus miles sale

US Airways 40k Barclays credit card

Newly minted oneworld member US Airways has been at it lately with their new 40k miles credit card sign-up bonus, which is awarded after the first purchase using your card.  This takes a substantial burden off frantically meeting spending thresholds, which can be as high as $10k.  The US Airways Barclays card also gets you a good spread of useful benefits when flying with US Airways:

  • Enjoy your first bag checked free on eligible bags for you and up to 4 companions on domestic US Airways operated flights
  • Get one companion certificate for up to two guests to travel with you on US Airways operated flights at $99 each, plus taxes and fees
  • Take advantage of priority boarding Zone 2 on US Airways operated flights
  • Relax with a complimentary US Airways Club day pass
  • Check in at the First Class counter

The $89 annual fee is NOT waived for the first year.  Spending $25k+ in a year will also net you 10k miles towards elite status.  With the merger scheduled to be fully implemented by early next year, the Barclays cards' days are numbered as AA has stated that they're going with Citi.  So now would definitely be a good time to sign-up for this card as these miles will be merged with your AA miles.

100% bonus miles sale

US Airways' trademark promo seems to be their quarterly 100% bonus miles sale, where you can purchase award miles for as low as 1.88 cents each.  Although US Airways meticulously devalued their award chart overnight without notice last month, they still have phenomenal redemption rates.  With this promo, a business class flight on Cathay Pacific between Sapporo and Hong Kong (~5.5 hours) will only cost you $564 plus taxes and fees (30k miles), which is a steal considering that you get to fly on CX's flatbed biz product.

North America to North Asia in biz was recently upped to 110k ($2,068), so you're better off in first class for 120k ($2,256).  However, North Asia to Europe in biz has remained at 80k ($1,504), which is by far the best deal on the market.  Add that to the fact that you get a free stopover possibly even in North America, buying miles for the sole purpose of flying in a premium cabin could be cheaper than buying a discounted economy class ticket.

$1,504 in business class

Be on the lookout for swift devaluations in the near future, so buy miles only as needed.  US Airways phone agents are generally lousy to say the least, which is frustrating but at the same time rewarding when they allow you to book ridiculous routes such as Tokyo to Paris to San Francisco and back to Tokyo for 80k miles.  The double miles sale is a tiered bonus, and you'll only get 100% bonus miles if you purchase 30k+.

Limited time offer!
Buy miles from May 3rd until May 25th, 2014 and get up to a 100% bonus – up to 50,000 miles.

• Buy 10,000 to 19,000 miles, get 50% bonus miles
• Buy 20,000 to 29,000 miles, get 75% bonus miles
• Buy 30,000 to 50,000 miles, get 100% bonus miles

Bottom line

US Airways still carries the best mileage purchasing promos, and these deals most likely won't survive the merger.  If you've always been dreaming of that trip in premium class to Asia or Europe this summer, then this would be your ticket for the best value.  The Barclays card for sure won't outlast the merger, so mooch those miles while you still can, because chances are that we've got rough waters ahead with devaluations and stripped benefits.

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