Despite the immense impact of globalization and hype about a future with ubiquitous connectivity, it’s a pity that air travel is still considered the transport mode of choice for the elite. Yes, affordable air travel is still a distant dream and most wanderlust-inspired bucket lists are left unfulfilled due to the financial burden they can put on one’s lifestyle. For Singaporeans, the budgeting for air travel is an even more unrealistic challenge since they already have their plate full with sky high living costs.
Most Singaporeans hold out for promotional periods to make their bookings months in advance to cut down on airfare as much as possible; however, this isn’t the singular solution to cheap flight tickets. In fact, the majority of people fail to recognize the leverage they have at their disposal and overlook the powers bestowed by their greatest financial tool – the credit card.
The days of limiting the allocation of air miles exclusively for frequent flyers has come to an end. Yes, there are a host of credit cards that allow you to convert the reward points earned by you on regular expenditure at select eateries, petrol stations, retail outlets, and cinemas into air miles.
These miles can be redeemed to grant you discounted or free tickets, along with additional benefits like airport lounge access and upgrading your travel class. However, it is important to note that the stipulations for conversion points are directly dependent on the credit card and airline linked to them. For instance, let us assume Card A and Card B offer 10 points per dollar and 5 points per dollar spent respectively. Now, Card A converts 16,000 points to 1000 air miles; whereas, Card B converts 8,000 miles to 1000 air miles. In this care, the conversion rate associated with Card B will be the difference maker and allow you to get more bang for your buck than you would with Card B.
For Singaporeans, the KrisFlyer miles are the premier air miles reward points that can be cashed in for flights to over 1,000 destinations across 170 countries on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir and other airline partners. Here are the 3 best ways to purchase KrisFlyer miles:
Buying KrisFlyer Miles through Singapore Airlines
Buying KrisFlyer Miles directly through Singapore Airlines is not a very widely known solution. Singaporeans can purchase miles directly through KrisFlyer as long as they have at least half of the needed redemption amount. Therefore, booking a redemption worth 60,000 KrisFlyer Miles would require you to have a minimum of 30,000 miles in your account.
The price for 1,000 KrisFlyer Miles is fixed at S$50 USD.
Accumulating KrisFlyer Miles with American Express
The Singapore Airlines Amex Ascend credit card is one of the most popular assets in the hands of frequent flyers. American Express offers bundles of rewards points in blocks of 1,000 at $S30. Depending on the credit card conversion terms, you can convert either 450 or 400 points to accrue 250 KrisFlyer Miles.
The maximum reward points purchase limit is set at 20,000. Certain cards may also have to deal with transfer fees up to S$20 for converting their points into air miles.
Buying KrisFlyer Miles through a Hotel Partner
Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG)
Available for an astoundingly affordable rate of 3.5 cents per mile with a maximum limit of 20,000 points per year, the SPG program surely offers the cheapest route to purchasing KrisFlyer miles. The conversion rate is set at 1-1, and SPG also allows you to accrue 5,000 bonus KrisFlyer miles per 20,000 points worth of transfer.
If you were to buy and transfer 20,000 SPG points it would cost you $S882 for 25,000 KrisFlyer Miles working out at the cheapest purchase rate of 3.5 cents per KrisFlyer Mile (SGD) – 1.5 cents cheaper than through Singapore Airlines itself!
Value of Miles for Each Cabin Class
Singapore Air and SilkAir are two of the prime airline carriers based out of Singapore. Here are the miles value rates depending on the class of seats booked by passengers:
|Airlines||Suites||First Class||Business Class||Economy Class|
|Singapore Airlines||300% – R
150% – F, P
|150% – A, F, P||125% – C, D, J, Z||100% – B, E, H, L, M, S, U, W, Y
50% – N, Q
10% – K*, T, V
|SilkAir||N.A||N.A||125% – C, D, J, Z||100% – B, E, H, L, M, S, U, W, Y
50% – N, Q
10% – K*, T, V
Each dollar spent contributes to the multiplication of reward points in your account. Hence, it is essential to lay out a strategy that allows you to tap maximum value from your expenditure so that you can extract more air miles. Looking out for travel-specific credit cards is a fantastic way to get you started in the right direction.
How to Get the Most Out of Your KrisFlyer Miles
Redeeming air miles during non-promotional periods when ticket prices are elevated is a great way to ensure your savings are maximized, especially for less popular travel destinations. Since these low frequency routes are rarely discounted under any promotional scheme, it is more preferable to optimize your airfare with air miles.
Additionally, air miles are also great for booking long haul flights that are conventionally expensive throughout the year.
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