American Airlines AAdvantage and United Airlines Mileage Plus are both running “mystery bonus” promotions through their online shopping portals.
Most AA members are receiving the offer of 500 bonus miles for spending $125 or more…
The UA offer requires a lower amount of spend of $65 before April 21st 2021, for those same 500 miles…
How to Spend $65-125 Easily?
I find it really easy to reach these spending targets by booking future hotel stays. (or cancelling and re-booking something I have already reserved) You don’t have to stay during the period of the promo, simply make the reservation. Some of the hotel chains you can find on the AA shopping portal are:
- Best Western
- Choice (Clarion, Comfort Suites, etc.)
- IHG (Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, etc.)
- Motel 6
There are fewer hotel chain options via the United shopping portal, but Marriott is available as well…
Of course, if you subsequently cancel your hotel reservation, you will lose your entitlement to the bonus miles.
And to be absolutely clear… When you use a cashback or airline shopping portal to click through to a hotel chain website, you are STILL booking direct and qualifying to earn points, elite status credit, etc.
Often you will receive a slightly better rebate by using a cashback website – and getting actual cash instead of airline miles – but these “bonus mile” promotions definitely help you extract more value by earning miles instead…
The Bottom Line
If you have a cheap Marriott stay coming up, you might want to cancel and rebook. A simple $70 room night booked via the United shopping portal could earn you 570 miles in addition to the points you would earn via Marriott Bonvoy. A very nice rebate if you ask me…