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The various airline mileage shopping portals typically hand out extra bonus miles around the holidays, so it can make sense to time large purchases with these increased payouts to maximize your mileage earnings (and often also take advantage of great holiday sales). We usually start seeing these mileage increases around mid-November in advance of the Black Friday/holiday shopping period.
Today I got an email from the United MileagePlus Shopping portal informing me that as a “top shopper” (shhh, don’t tell Josh I’m a top shopper) I get two extra days to earn up to 6,000 bonus miles on my holiday shopping. I can’t swear to this, but the way it is worded makes me think that while limited accounts may get two extra days to earn the bonus miles, this bonus will open up to everyone in a couple days.
Earn bonus United miles from today through November 24th
- Spend $150, earn 500 bonus miles
- Spend $350, earn 1,500 bonus miles
- Spend $650, earn 3,000 bonus miles
- Spend $1,250, earn 6,000 bonus miles
What is great is that these bonus miles are in addition to whatever you are earning on the rewards credit card you use to shop online, as well as on top of the actual payout at the retailer you select. For example, right now Lands End is paying out at 8x miles per dollar. Let’s pretend that you had $1,250 in purchases to make from a retailer offering 8x during the bonus period. That would result in 10,000 miles from the actual retailer purchase, 6,000 bonus miles from this promotion, plus whatever miles your rewards credit card will earn you.
That is likely at least 17,250 United miles for $1,250 in purchases. That works out to over 13 miles per dollar – which of course will vary based on whether the retailer(s) you use are paying more or less than the one in the example. Not everyone will spend that much in the next few weeks via the shopping portal, but if you happen to need an appliance, have lots of holiday purchases, or whatever, it can really add up in a good way.
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Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.