LIMITED OFFER: Buy United Miles From 1.88 Cents Each

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United Airlines has come out with a limited offer/limited time miles sale in which MileagePlus members can buy miles from 1.88 cents each….if they’re quick. United is selling miles in bundles and when the first bundle sells out the next bundle is introduced at a more expensive price point.

United MileagePlus Packages

  • Buy 20,000 miles & get 20,000 bonus miles – 1,000 packages available
  • Buy 20,000 miles & get 14,000 bonus miles – 2,500 packages

Buy United Miles – Headline Rules

  • Promotional offer valid until 11:59 p.m. CT on June 19, 2018 OR when the 1,000 20,000-mile packages sell out – whichever is first.
  • The first 1,000 members who purchase 20,000 miles will receive 20,000 bonus miles. Timing and order of purchases will be determined by MileagePlus in its sole discretion.
  • Members may make only one purchase transaction in connection with this promotion.
  • Bonus miles will be credited to the recipient’s account when the transaction is complete.
  • You may purchase up to 150,000 miles per account per calendar year.
  • Bonus miles count toward the 150,000-mile annual limit per account.
  • The credit card used in the purchase will be billed immediately upon purchase.
  • Mileage rates and other applicable fees are subject to change.
  • Allow up to 48 hours for miles to process and post to your MileagePlus account.
  • Miles purchased are nonrefundable.
  • Purchased miles do not count toward MileagePlus Premier® status.
  • See here for all Terms and Conditions applicable to this transaction, which include United’s Privacy Policy and the MileagePlus Program Rules.
  • GST/HST is charged to Canadian residents.
  • If you use Powered by Points to purchase United MileagePlus miles, the transaction will appear as ‘Points United Miles’.

Link to Promotion

The Math

Unsurprisingly the best rate is available if you manage to buy one of the first 1,000 packages in which you earn a 100% bonus.

Buying 20,000 miles will see you net 40,000 miles after the bonus is applied for a total outlay of $752.50:

That works out at a cost of ~1.88 cents/mile.

If you’re too late to buy the first bundle the second bundle is considerably more expensive.

Buying 20,000 miles will see you net 34,000 miles after the bonus is applied for a total outlay of $752.50 – that works out to ~2.21 cents/mile.

Should You Buy Miles In This Sale?

At 1.88 cents/mile a round trip Business Class saver award between the 48 contiguous state and Europe would cost 120,000 miles or ~$2,258 and that’s not a bad price for a Business Class fare…..but you can only get 40,000 miles in this promotion.

You can’t buy enough miles in this sale to purchase a long-haul premium cabin fare so the sale is mostly only going to be of use to those looking to top up an account.

1.88 cents is just about as cheap as we see United Miles being offered for sale so, if you already have a good balance of United Miles but don’t quite have enough for an award you’d like to book then this could be a good chance to boost your account.

If you don’t have any United Miles right now I doubt this sale will me much good to you – you can really only buy enough miles for a roundtrip economy fare within the 48 contiguous states and economy class awards are usually not an economical way to use miles.

For 24,000 miles you can fly roundtrip Economy Class anywhere within the 48 contiguous states and, in this sale, 24,000 miles would set you back over $450 – that’s not a good price for most Economy Class fares.

Bottom Line

There is definitely value to be had here if you’re looking to book a flight in the not too distant future and if you already have a decent haul of United Miles. Otherwise it’s a bad deal.

The important thing to remember is that you shouldn’t be buying miles in the hope of being able to use them down the line – miles can devalue when you least expect them too so buying them to hold is a bad idea.

Check award availability, do the math and only consider buying miles if everything lines up – it’s simple!

Link to buy United Miles