The Alaska Mileage Plan bonus is back! Right now Alaska is offering a huge mystery bonus of up to 50% on purchased miles until December 23, 2019! To see your bonus offer, click here.

buy Alaska Miles

Alaska Mileage Plan miles are some of the most valuable frequent flyers points out there. Why is that? Well, Alaska has a unique bunch of award partners for which you can redeem your points. Most notably are Cathay Pacific, Qantas Airways, Japan Airlines, Emirates, Korean Airlines, Fiji Airways, LATAM Airlines and Hainan to name a few.

Purchasing miles from Alaska Mileage Plan (especially when there’s a bonus involved) can be a cheap way to experience business or first class for much cheaper than compared to paying for a cash fare in business or first.

Alaska Airlines sell their points throughout the year, and from time to time there’s a bonus promotion, which in tandem with favourable exchange rates makes for a rather good bargain.

Alaska Mileage plan allows you to buy 150,000 miles per calendar year which is a new restriction as of 25/01/2019. To get around this you could open multiple accounts or use family to book under your name.

Keep in mind your Alaska Mileage Plan needs to be active for 10 days before you can start buying points, so get onto that ASAP if you want to take advantage of the current promotion!

Click here to buy Alaska Miles + bonus

Current Alaska Miles Deal (November-December 2019)

Currently, you can purchase up to 90,000 Alaska Miles (including the 50% bonus) for US$1,773.75
Keep in mind that the current promotion ends December 23, 2019. Make sure check our account via this page to see what % bonus you received. The deal this time works in tiers.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Buy 10,000 – 19,000 miles = 20% bonus
  • Buy 20,000 – 39,000 miles = 35% bonus
  • Buy 40,000 – 60,000 miles = 50% bonus

Of course, if 90,000 Miles isn’t enough you can purchase a second lot with the same discount. There’s no limit to your account, but there is a limit of 4 per credit card and capped at 150,000 points (per calendar year). Also, keep in mind that the purchase will be charged in USD so it’s best to use a card that doesn’t attract FX fees (typically 3%). Personally, I use my ANZ Adventures Visa card which earn points and attracts no foreign exchange fees.

Best Use Of Alaska Mileage Plan Miles

Japan Airlines 787 Business Class To Tokyo

This first example is by far the best value use of Alaska Miles but it won’t suit everyone. For only 25,000 miles + around $80 in taxes you can fly from Singapore to Tokyo and after a stopover (no restrictions) you can fly back to Kuala Lumpur. This is classed as a one way itinerary but since Singapore and Kuala Lumpur are so close together, it might as well be a return flight. 14h+ in Japan Airlines 787 business class; yes please!

Cathay Pacific Business Class Australia/New Zealand to Hong Kong

One of my favourite redemptions would be the business class flight from any Australian city (Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane) to Hong Kong on the A330 or A350 with the fantastic reverse herringbone seats.

  • Cost: 30,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $591

How to Book Cathay Pacific With Alaska Miles

Keep in mind that Cathay Pacific award space is not available online via Alaska Airlines; therefore you need to use other tools to do your research. We recommend British Airways, American Airlines or Asia Miles award finder tools. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Create a British Airways Executive Club account
  2. Search for award space on British Airways/American Airlines/Asia Miles etc.
  3. Note down your desired flight numbers, dates and time
  4. Call Alaska Airlines on +1-800-252-7522
  5. Inform the agent you would like to book an award ticket on Cathay Pacific using your miles
  6. Provide the flight info which you should have noted down earlier
  7. Provide your passport and credit card details to complete the booking.

Note that not all the award space you will find on the One World partner search tools will match with the inventory Alaska Airlines has been allocated, flexible travel dates is the #1 benefit a point hacker can have.

Cathay Pacific Dubai to London Via Hong Kong

Thanks to the Alaska Mileage Plan stopover rules you can book a trip with Cathay Pacific in business class from Dubai to London with a stopover in Hong Kong. Best of all, the price is amazing; only 42,500 miles are required for this whole itinerary! To book this amazing redemption, you will have to get on the phone as it can’t be done online.

  • Cost: 42,500,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $837

Qantas Business Class Domestic

Qantas business class from east/west coast on the A330. Check out my review here.
You will be paying a quarter of the cash price Qantas is looking for!

  • Cost: 20,000 Alaska Miles + Taxes
  • Price in USD: $394

Qantas First Class

Another great redemption (if you can get it!) is Qantas first class from Australia to the U.S. in first class! You can check out my review of Qantas A380 first class cabin here.

  • Cost: 70,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $1379

Qantas Business Class International

Naturally, if you can’t snag a seat in first, business class on Qantas isn’t all too bad, and for around 15k less than first, you can enjoy it from Australia to anywhere in the U.S.

  • Cost: 55,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $1083

Fiji Airways Business Class

Volcano spotting in Hawaii? Why not fly there in comfort with Fiji Airways for a fraction of the cash cost! You can depart from either Australia or New Zealand for the same price. Naturally, you’re probably thinking “why not Fiji?”. Good question, but it isn’t allowed as a redemption from Australia with Alaska Miles.

  • Cost: 45,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $886

Korean Airlines Business Class

Korean Airways from Australia to the U.S via South Korea in business is also an option. however, this is always priced as a return flight.

  • Cost: 125,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price is USD: $2462

Cathay Pacific First & Business (Europe)

If you’ve already positioned to Hong Kong, why not fly on to Europe in first class with Cathay Pacific? Check out my review here. Alternatively, “slum” it in business for a significant saving.

  • Cost First Class: 70,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $1379
  • Cost Business: 42,500 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $837

Japan Airlines First Class

Already in the U.S.? Why not try Japan Airlines in first class to Asia.

  • Cost First Class: 70,000 Alaska Miles + taxes
  • Price in USD: $1379

Those are just a few of the many options available. To maximise the journey you can even utilise the free stopover on a one-way ticket. If your end destination is in the same region, the mileage requirement will also be the same. For example, you could fly from the US to Hong Kong, stop over and continue onto Singapore for the same price (50,000 Miles). To figure out the best routes, you will have to look at the possible destinations each Alaska partner airline flies to.

Redeeming Alaska Miles for travel with Emirates

Unfortunately, Alaska Mileage Plan does not allow redemption on Emirates from Australia, but you can use your miles to redeem Emirates business and first from the U.S. to Dubai and onto other destinations in the Middle East. The cost price of these redemptions, however, received a considerable devaluation a few years ago so using Qantas points to fly Emirates is generally a better idea. To explore the prices and options, check out the award chart here.

Important note:

Before you jump in, keep in mind that since Alaska Airlines isn’t part of an alliance; they set the rules on the routes you can redeem your miles on. This means that even though they partner with Qantas, it doesn’t mean you can simply book ANY route on the Qantas network. The same goes for other airlines. To see which routing options are available (other than my favourite routes listed above). You can visit the Alaska Airlines interactive award chart to see the options.

How about those pesky taxes?

Good news, unlike Qantas, Alaska Mileage Plan is very reasonable when it comes to charging taxes. Generally, there isn’t much you can do about government taxes and when it comes to carrier imposed taxes known as “fuel surcharges”, there’s no markup by Alaska Airlines so they won’t collect any extras for the majority of redemptions. The exception to this rule is British Airways and Iceland Air.

To get an accurate idea of how much taxes you will need to pay in addition to the points required, your best bet is the ITA Matrix https://matrix.itasoftware.com and search for the flight you want to redeem. Once you find it, click on the total price to get a breakdown of all the taxes added on.

Other Fees

Alaska is very reasonable when it comes to charging fees but here are a few you may want to keep in consideration when booking!

  • $15 Phone booking fee. This is charged for awards that can’t be booked online such as Cathay Pacific or more complex routes. It’s worth it to try to get the agent to waive this fee because the award wasn’t bookable online… but it’s not a guarantee.
  • $12.5 Partner Award ticket fee, mostly this is an unavoidable cost when booking flights which aren’t operated by Alaska Airlines themselves.
  • $125 Change or Cancellation Fee. When it comes to Alaska Mileage Plan, changing or cancelling a ticket is essentially the same thing and will attract a $125 fee per ticket. Your taxes and miles will be refunded, so it’s not all bad news when worse comes to worse. However, if you’re cancelling 60 days before departure, Alaska Airlines will waive this fee. Same goes if you’re MVP Gold or 75k Elite with Alaska Mileage Plan.

Researching and booking

Finding award space and booking it is usually the trickiest part of this operation. I don’t find Alaska’s award finder all that reliable, so it’s best to double check with other carriers as well.
My favourites are British Airways, JAL Mileage Bank or Asia Miles.

Alternatively, you can use tools such as Award Nexus, Expert Flyer (my favourite) or KVS tool to do your research but these are paid options and generally require a bit more knowledge to operate.

Alaska Mileage Plan In Conclusion

It’s best to buy miles if and when you have a redemption in mind. Alaska Miles credit to your account instantly, so there’s no waiting around hoping the flights you found don’t disappear.
Overall Alaska Mileage Plan offers some fantastic prices if you want to enjoy first or business class at a fraction of the cash price so make sure you register for a free account here and see if you’re eligible for a 50% bonus!

Alaska Mileage Plan Sale History

Historical Alaska Mileage Plan bonus sales and discounts.
DateBonus Offer
July - August 201940-50%
June 201930% Discount on purchase
May 201950%
March 201940%
January-February 201940%
November-December 201850%
October 201840%
August-October 201850%
May-July 201840%
February-April 201840%
January-February 201840%
November-December 201740%
October 201730% Discount on purchase
August-October 201750%
May-July 201750%
February-April 201740%
January-February 201740%
November 201640%
August 201650%
May 201650%
February-March 201640%
November-December 201550%
August-September 201540%
July-August 201535%
March 201540%
November-December 201435%
September-October 201440%
May 201435%
March 201440%
December 201335%
September 201340%
August 201240%
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Brad
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Brad

Hi
How do you book jal award seats using the Alaskan miles.
Do you put them on Alaskans website.
Or convert the miles to JAL, if so, how?

Immanuel
Admin

Hi Brad, yes you would book JAL seats online via the Alaska Airlines website (click the check box to use miles). You can’t convert Alaska Miles to JAL, they simply partner where JAL releases seats to Alaska for redemption. Hope that makes sense?

DAVID
Guest
DAVID

Just slightly (?) confused about this. When I look at the AS “interactive” miles website and input that I want to fly from AUSTRALIA to ASIA the only option I get it CX, nothing regarding JL or QF or any other airline.

DAVID
Guest
DAVID

Also, unless I am doing something totally wrong, when I input that I want to fly from AUSTRALIA to CARIBBEAN the only result I get is FIJI AIRWAYS which just doesn’t seem right top me.

Immanuel
Admin

Hey David, Alaska Airlines isn’t part of an alliance so normal common sense rules do not apply. The program is great but it’s restrictive in what you can actually book (on partner airlines). To get to Hawaii from Australia, Fiji Airways is the only option. Cheers, Immanuel.

Immanuel
Admin

Hi David, as per the note; Alaska is great BUT it’s also very restrictive. So the routes you can see on the interactive chart are the only ones available for booking. This means to get to Asia from Australia you can only fly Cathay Pacific. Japan Airlines is only available out and into Asia from the US. Qantas is available from and to the US and within Australia. I hope that makes sense?

Immanuel
Admin

On that note, JAL is also available intra Asia. A cool route you can do for only 25k miles + $70 in taxes is SIN-NRT-KUL (with a stopover in NRT). Since SIN and KUL are so close together it kinda works out as a return ticket but on paper it’s a one way with a stopover, hence the amazing pricing in JAL’s 787 business class.

DAVID
Guest
DAVID

Thanks for the reply and it does make sense – in fact, that is what I assumed until I read on your blog regarding using AS points on KE: “Korean Airways from Australia to the U.S via South Korea in business is also an option. however, this is always priced as a return flight. Cost: 125,000 Alaska Miles + taxes Price is USD: $2637.5’ My understanding , both from what I read on the AS website as well as from your reply is that what is written on your site is either wrong and/or old information, I.e., AS miles CANNOT… Read more »

Immanuel
Admin

Hi David, here’s where it gets tricky again. Even though Korean Air goes through Asia, it’s part of a multi city redemption to the US. As far as I know, you can’t book SYD-ICN but you can book SYD-ICN-LAX (or other US airports). I believe you can add a stopover so you could hop off in Seoul and then continue on. On top of that, Korean Air does not allow one way itineraries for Alaska MileaPlan bookings but you can technically do 1 way on Korean and for the return, book Cathay or JAL (different pricing would apply).

DAVID
Guest
DAVID

WOW! Thanx for the info — that’s great news!

Immanuel
Admin

Glad it made sense 😀 If it was easy, everyone would be doing it!
The other thing is that you can book Korean Air online via Alaska so you can research availability and dates. Just make sure to use the “multi city” search tool.

Aidan
Guest
Aidan

How is the availability of flights when booking vs Qantas ff points. Assuming 0 status with Alaska vs Bronze with Qantas ?

Immanuel
Admin

Hi Aiden, status doesn’t matter when booking award seats through Alaska on partners such as Qantas. There’s no reliable way to tell you what availability is like, no one knows how many seats and what type of inventory Alaska can access. Best way is to check availability yourself and buy points when you find flights you want to book. Saying that, I’m not sure when the 50% bonus deal will be back, it’s the highest we’ve seen on Alaska.

Jmaes
Guest
Jmaes

super difficult to find ANY ex-Aus flights to Asia

Immanuel
Admin

The only option is Cathay Pacific from Australia to Hong Kong for which you have to call to to both book and check availability. Sure it’s not that easy but if it was, everyone would be doing it 😉

Phil
Guest
Phil

You may want to change the:
“Alaska Mileage plan allows you to buy unlimited amounts of miles, but you can only use the same credit card for up to 4 transactions per calendar year”
Now limited to 150K/ year

Immanuel
Admin

Thanks Phil, just updated the article. It’s unfortunate but at least it’s not a devaluation of the program (yet).

James
Guest
James

Do you think its worth it to buy Alaska miles given our crap AUD Fx rate?
Is it still good deal to use in Asia / Aus travel

Immanuel
Admin

Hey James, only you can decide that! Do the number on how much you will end up paying for a particular flight and make a purchase based on that. For me, yes it’s still worth it even though the Aussie dollar is in the shithouse

Joe
Guest
Joe

Hi All,

Attempted to purchase some points and actually completed the transaction. Whilst waiting for the points to be credited, received an email 2 days later to advise the transaction is cancelled.

Called the customer care team and was advised to contact my bank. Contacted the bank and said the transaction is authorised and ready for points.com to complete. Called customer care team again and different person suggested perhaps I am not US resident and using a non US card for purchase therefore transaction got cancelled.

Anyone have similar experience? Perhaps work around?

Thanks in advance.

Immanuel
Admin

Hey Joe, did you only recently sign up for Alaska Mileage Plan? If so, keep in mind you need to wait 10 days before purchasing any points.

Joe
Guest
Joe

Hey Immanuel, I signed up on the last promotion in December 2018 and only decided to buy points this time around after finding suitable CX flight.

Immanuel
Admin

Hmm that’s weird; I know Alaska sometimes didn’t accept Aussie cards in the past but that was a while ago. I purchased a bunch during the last promo and didn’t have any issues. From memory I used my FX free Bankwest card. Since the points are sold by Points.com it might be worth trying to call them. They are in Canada so try during business hours: +1 416.596.6370

Joe
Guest
Joe

I finally figured out the “problem”. In short, international cards are good. The problem relates to the name on the account and the name on the credit card. In Alaskan Air Miles, if you have created your profile as John A. Smith and when you are paying for the miles (in the payment screen) with your credit card, you enter as John Smith, the transaction still goes through and credit card will charge. On the back end, points.com will conduct a check (hence points not crediting instantaneously), if the name differs slightly, you will receive a transaction cancelled notification. Hope… Read more »

Immanuel
Admin

Hey Joe, thanks for sharing! I’m sure this will save some people as it must be a common occurrence!

Phil
Guest
Phil

I wonder if that’s a new thing for Points.com? I used to buy stacks of SPG points through them for just about every relative I had, using one card.

Immanuel
Admin

Could be a new anti fraud measure. Personally I haven’t had any issues.

eppie
Guest
eppie

Hi…. It happened the same to me, my transaction got canceled. Credit card got through and the next day got email said the transaction was canceled. My profile account and credit card name are exactly the same. Tried to email them to ask why, but no response until now.
Does anyone here know what other cause transaction declined?

Immanuel
Admin

Hi Eppie, can you confirm both your name on the card and name on the account math 100%? I think the best way to get it sorted quick is to call Points.com (the company that handles the sales). They are based in Canada and their number is: +1 416.596.6370

shane eadie
Guest
shane eadie

Thanks Immanuel once again fantastic info at our fingertips!

Immanuel
Admin

Thanks Shane! Glad to see you got some value out of it 🙂

Nathan
Guest
Nathan

Hi. You state that you can fly Qantas Business Class Australia to the US using 55K Alaskan miles. However from my trying of various dates from Melbourne to Los Angeles or Las Vegas return the it is only the Aus domestiv or US domestiv legs that are in business class. The international leg is in “coach”.. E.g. Mel to Brisbane to LAX it is only the Mel to Bris that is in business class. Or Mel to LAX to Las Vegas it is only the LAX to Vegas in business class. It will cost you 55K points though.

Immanuel
Admin

Hi Nathan, the unfortunate reality is that it depends on award space. Keep in mind that Qantas from AU to the US is probably the hardest route to find award seats on + the fact that Qantas Platinum One, Platinum and Gold members will get first dips on seats. Yes it’s possible but you will need to set alerts for seats to open and be super flexible with your dates. You can refer to the interactive award chart for pricing: https://www.alaskaair.com/content/mileage-plan/use-miles/award-charts

John
Guest
John

Hi Immanuel,
Is that Singapore-Tokyo-Kuala Lumpur one way sweet spot back as available on JAL? Thought they’d removed it with the recent program revaluation?
Regards,
John