What should I do with 5,672 miles?

Discussion in 'Alaska Airlines | Mileage Plan' started by Maximizer, Jun 26, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Maximizer

    Maximizer Silver Member

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    Hi all,

    3 members of my family have 5,672 Alaska miles each, expiring in November.

    We mostly fly UA, and have significant AA and BA miles, but have no plans to fly AS, or DL or any other earn partners, in the foreseeable future.

    What are my best options for getting some value out of these miles?

    Thank you!
     
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  2. marcwint55

    marcwint55 Gold Member

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    I would think about applying for the Bank of America Alaska miles credit card, as the bonus miles will come in handy to keep the miles from expiring. If you do not want to do that, you should be able to buy something very cheap from one of their partners and that will extend the miles. You will have to buy something for each account just as you would have to get a credit card for each member. There are also charitable donations that you can make with the miles.
     
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  3. dgreen12
    Original Member

    dgreen12 Silver Member

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    I'd look at Mileage Plan Dining as an option to keep the accounts open.

    There's no Mileage Plan shopping mall, so you can rule that option out.

    If you're still flying a fair amount on AA, consider crediting those miles to AS once you've hit your goal on AA (either annually or lifetime). If I were starting from scratch (with the ability to fly AS somewhat regularly), I'd use AS for crediting my AA and DL flights (especially if I was going to be a lower tier on either one of them).
     
  4. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

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    An occasional car rental can help keep "orphan" accounts alive. That's how I have kept my 27k Alaska miles around for years. I really need to use them for something. I donated my wife's 5000+ miles a few years ago.
     
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  5. desamo

    desamo Gold Member

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    Sadly, Alaska recently withdrew from trades on points.com -- used to be you could post a trade and get United miles for them.

    I'd hoped to do that on a recent flight, but I was just a tidge too late.

    Worse, most of the trades I've seen are either unavailable redemptions or particularly bad ones. Bah.
     
  6. Maximizer

    Maximizer Silver Member

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    Thanks for the suggestions. I was thinking of a points.com exchange, but as mentioned above, that's no longer available.

    I really have no plans to fly anything other than UA, otherwise the suggestions of crediting both AA and DL to AS would be a good one. The reason I have AS miles in the first place is because I credited a stray DL transcon trip, thinking that AS would be a dumping ground for several carriers that I might fly occasionally.

    Here's what I am thinking: open two credit cards, which will give us 30K miles in two accounts (25K bonus plus existing). Buy 4 tickets Bay Area to Hawaii, using the 2 companion certs from the credit cards, and upgrade one-way using miles (probably the return). Are mileage upgrades confirmed at booking? Just for kicks I searched for flights around Thanksgiving. There is some reasonable availability for mileage-upgradable fares, around $600 for SJC-LIH-SJC. With credit card fees and companion fees, I'll be out about $1600 for 4 tickets plus use all the miles for the upgrades. Sound reasonable? Any tips for how best to execute this are appreciated, I have only the most basic experience with AS.

    The third AS account belongs to a child, it will be hard to earn miles from partners because she has no credit card, doesn't rent cars, etc. So donating might be the best option for this account.
     
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  7. daemon14

    daemon14 Gold Member

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    You never know what promotions, mergers, or opportunities will arise for the child's account. Keeping the miles active through shopping portals is easy and effective. 12500 is a one-way coach ticket on AS, and it's almost halfway there.
     
  8. Bay Pisco Shark
    Original Member

    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    Not only that, you'll be earning miles on your tickets flown with the companion tickets, so you'll end up pretty much in the same mileage boat you're currently in, but with an expiration date extended :)

    Hawaii is an expensive mileage upgrade, and really not worth it, and it won't get you free luggage anymore. :mad: However, you stand a better chance getting one via SJC than SEA.
     
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  9. Maximizer

    Maximizer Silver Member

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    I thought (after spending a few minutes on alaskaair.com) that all mileage upgrades are 15,000 miles one way. How is it "expensive" vs other destinations? Am I misunderstanding how mileage upgrades work?

    Yes, I'm not really sure about upgrading. I don't really care for the bigger seat personally, but it would be nice to have more room for the kids...
     
  10. Bay Pisco Shark
    Original Member

    Bay Pisco Shark Gold Member

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    Mea culpa - I thought the mileage upgrades were higher for HI.
     

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