Alaska Airlines’ Best-Ever Buy Mileage Bonus: It’s a Mystery

by Shelli

Mystery bonuses seem to be all the rage right now. Just as Hyatt ends one, Alaska Airlines kicks in with theirs. Alaska’s mystery bonus on purchased miles runs through October 4, and the best mystery bonus offered is 50%. This is as much as I’ve ever seen Alaska offer on purchased miles. Log into your account and find YOUR mystery bonus offer.

Alaska’s marketing can sometimes sound hokey, but hey, if your mystery bonus is 50%, this bonus is one of the few that makes buying miles a worthwhile proposition. For targeted Alaska Airlines members, the bonus levels are:

  • Buy 10,000-19,000 miles, receive a 20% bonus
  • Buy 20,000-39,000 miles, receive a 35% bonus
  • Buy 40,000-60,000 miles, receive a 50% bonus

Buying miles with a 50% bonus comes to about 1.97 cents per mile. If you buy the maximum amount of 60,000, which is the most miles Alaska Airlines allows members to buy at one time for this offer, you would actually be purchasing 90,000 miles for $1,773.75.

Alaska’s Mileage Plan has indeed provided me with the start to many wonderful journeys! There are incredible sweet spots in the Alaska reward chart (Cathay Pacific first class for 70,000 miles… hello!) We all have our favorite airlines and miles programs, and I’m a big fan of Alaska Airlines. I can never have too many Alaska miles.

Valuing Alaska Miles for Award Flights

I like that Alaska isn’t a part of an airline alliance. Instead, they have a long list of airline partners, including some of the most luxurious in the world.

My two favorite Alaska Airlines partners are Cathay Pacific and Japan Airlines. I recently had my Juicy Miles award booking team book me on Cathay Pacific Business Class to Asia.

Cathay Pacific Business Class on A350. Image by Cathay Pacific.

My first time flying Cathay Pacific was back in 2012, and even after all these years and airlines, I’m still a huge Cathay Pacific fan. I have an award ticket for a Japan Airlines flight booked using Alaska miles, so I’m really looking forward to experiencing JAL’s top-notch business class seats.

JAL's SkySuite business class seats are bookable using Alaska Mileage Plan Miles.

JAL’s APEX Suite business class seats are bookable using Alaska Mileage Plan Miles. Image by Japan Airlines

I’m looking forward to my fully flat bed and a great night’s sleep on my JAL Apex Suite that I booked using 50,000 Alaska Airlines miles!

Let’s consider the value here. At 60,000 Alaska Miles one-way, or 120,000 Alaska Miles round-trip, purchasing all the miles needed to book this Japan Airlines flight would cost about $2,600, round-trip. To compare, the cheapest round-trip flights this summer in business class are selling for nearly twice as much.

Alaska Miles Stopovers Increase Their Value Even More

Alaska allows you to book a stopover on award tickets. That’s true even on a one-way award ticket! For example, say you were going from the US to Bangkok. You could use your Alaska miles on their partner Cathay Pacific and stopover in Hong Kong for a couple of days and then head on to Bangkok. This is just one example. Why not enjoy more destinations for the same award price, right?

I’d never recommended buying points speculatively, but price it out and see if the math makes sense for you. You need to buy a minimum of 40k miles to receive the 50% bonus.

  • Buy 10,000-19,000 miles, receive a 20% bonus
  • Buy 20,000-39,000 miles, receive a 35% bonus
  • Buy 40,000-60,000 miles, receive a 50% bonus

Unlike other airlines, Alaska does not limit the total amount of miles you can purchase per year, only the total, (60,000 miles) you can buy in this one transaction. But keep in mind you must be an Alaska Airlines member for at least 10 days in order to purchase miles. Hopefully, you received the mystery 50% bonus offer when you log into your account.

Good luck! Where’s your next Alaska Airlines mileage award ticket taking you?

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