A Complete Guide To KrisFlyer Miles
Not everyone if lucky enough to win free tickets for a vacation. However, the next best thing is a ticket that you redeem for free with your air miles.
You may have come across ‘travel-hack’ articles, where people boast about how they have managed to travel the world on frequent flyer miles redeemed from their amazing credit card spending.
The trick to this is to sign up for a frequent flyer programme that allows you to earn miles easily, and also give you high value when it comes to redemption. For Singaporeans, the most obvious choice would be the KrisFlyer programme by Singapore Airlines.
Read on to find out if the KrisFlyer programme can really go the mile.
If you live in Singapore, then chances are you’ll be flying the most out of Changi Airport, and Singapore Airlines will offer you the most extensive coverage with direct flights.
Besides, there really isn’t any national carrier in competition here and maintaining a foreign carrier’s membership only makes sense if you travel to that country or region very frequently.
In addition to flights on Singapore Airlines, Silkair, Scoot and Tigerair, your KrisFlyer miles can also be used to redeem flights from the member airlines in Star Alliance, such as Lufthansa, Thai Airways, and United Airlines.
Your KrisFlyer miles will expire after three years at the end of the month in which you accrued the miles.
For example, if 10,000 miles were credited to your account in June 2017, they will expire on June 30 2020.
|Membership fee||Waived until further notice|
|Age limit||2 years and above|
|Earn miles||You can earn miles when you purchase air tickets with Singapore Airlines and SilkAir, when you shop at KrisShop, use their co-branded credit cards, as well as spend on selected car rental, hotels and serviced residences and retail.|
Convert to loyalty points in partner programmes.
|Expiry Date||Maximum expiry period of 3 years and can extend up to another year for a fee.
|Added Benefits||Star Alliance Silver Benefits for Elite members.|
What are the differences among KrisFlyer, KrisFlyer Elite Silver and KrisFlyer Elite Silver?
There are three tiers of membership – KrisFlyer, KrisFlyer Elite Silver and KrisFlyer Elite Gold. The higher the tier, the more added benefits.
Under the tier scheme, you are entitled for 25% elite tier bonus for silver and gold levels.
Here are the differences:
|KrisFlyer||KrisFlyer Elite Silver||KrisFlyer Elite Gold|
|Star Alliance status||None||Silver||Gold|
|How to qualify?||When you sign up for a membership.||When you have accumulated 25,000 Elite Miles within 12 consecutive months.||When you have accumulated 50,000 Elite Miles within 12 consecutive months.|
|Benefits||You can earn and redeem KrisFlyer miles.|
Priority reservation waitlist
Reduced (or waived) KrisFlyer service fees
Priority baggage handling, boarding and airport check-in
When does it make sense to use your miles instead of buying a ticket?
These days, there are many airline promotions and the ease of using websites like Skyscanner makes it nearly effortless to find the cheapest available ticket.
Obviously, if you want to travel and spend as little cash as possible, then using your miles is always better than coughing up cash.
In cases when you have both options, you are probably wondering when you should use their hard-earned miles. Here are some situations where it makes more sense to use your miles.
1. Travelling during peak period
If you are travelling during peak seasons such as the mid or year-end holidays, then your air tickets are most likely going to cost more.
For KrisFlyer redemptions, however, the number of miles required does not seem to vary according to travel season, though redemption spaces may sell out quickly for very popular destinations.
For example, a round-trip ticket on the cheapest fare to London may cost at least S$300 more over the Christmas holiday week than in September. On the other hand, the number of miles required for redemption during both periods is the same.
Hence, you might want to use your miles during popular holidays seasons and buy a ticket in cash for off-peak shoulder seasons.
2. Redeeming for a long-haul trip
When it comes to redeeming KrisFlyer miles, it’s a lot more ‘value-for-miles’ if you redeem for long-haul flights (e.g. Europe, U.S) compared to short or medium-haul (e.g. Thailand, Japan).
|Paid Ticket |
|SG-Hong Kong||S$360||30,000 Miles + S$79.60 in taxes and surcharges|
|SG-San Francisco||S$1626||76,000 Miles +S155.90 in taxes and surcharges|
To find out how much your mile is worth, we can compare it to the cost of a paid ticket, while taking into account the taxes and surcharges that are already included in the cost of the paid ticket.
Value per mile
SG-Hong Kong (S$360 – S$79.6)/30,000
SG-San Francisco (S$1,626 – S$155.9)/76,000
As you can see, your miles are worth more when you redeem for a long haul flight and it makes much more sense to purchase tickets for shorter flights and add on to your mileage instead.
Quicker ways to earn points
If you are not a frequent flyer, you can still earn KrisFlyer points. One of the easiest ways to earn points without having to fly with Singapore Airlines is to sign up for a credit card that lets you earn miles which you can then redeem whenever you want.
Here are some credit cards that let you do just that.
1. American Express KrisFlyer Credit Card
Get a card that helps you earn miles while you’re travelling. One of the easiest way to boost your miles is by enjoying welcome bonus of 5,000 KrisFlyer miles.
All you need to do is just charge your card and the miles will be credited to your account. Also, with this card, you can enjoy hassle-free conversion. For every S$1 you charge to AmEx KrisFlyer card, it will instantly converted up to 2 miles.
It’s definitely one of the best travel credit cards to earn KrisFlyer miles for avid traveler.
Receive up to 2 miles for every S$1 spentWelcome Bonus: Enjoy 5,000 KrisFlyer Miles + Free 1-Year Subscription of StarHub Go Select
2. Standard Chartered Visa Infinite
If your credit card spending is consistently at least S$2,000, then this card may be even more attractive. With a minimum spending of $2,000 in a statement cycle, S$1 spent locally will earn you 1.4 miles and S$1 spent overseas will earn you 3 miles.
With spending of less than S$2000, S$1 will give you 1 mile. For those who travel frequently, this card will definitely help you rake up the points a lot quicker.
Under the Standard Chartered 360° Rewards Programme, every 5 points you earned using your credit card can be converted to 2 KrisFlyer miles.
Enjoy up to 3 miles for every S$1 spentEnjoy up to (i) 86,000 miles, or (ii) 66,000 miles + 28 inch Samsonite luggage bag
3. Citibank PremierMiles Visa Card
This is one of the best travel credit cards in Singapore. Every S$1 spent locally gives you 1.2 miles and every S$1 spent overseas gives you 2 miles.
There is no minimum spend so every single dollar you charge to the card with the exception of flexible payment plans, income tax and cash advances will contribute to your mileage accrual. Also, your points don’t expire, so you can take your time to accumulate miles to redeem for a longer-haul flight.
Although Citi Miles are not the same as KrisFlyer miles, you can convert your them to KrisFlyer miles at 1Citi Mile for 1 KrisFlyer miles!
Up to 10 miles for every S$1 spent on online travel bookingsWelcome bonus: Up to 42,000 miles when you apply and spend.
Understanding how to earn and redeem your KrisFlyer miles will play a significant role in reducing your travelling expenses especially when you are an avid traveller. KrisFlyer miles also allow you to redeem on a list of best offered services for your travelling convenience.
By taking advantage of this system, you could be a step closer to your dream vacation in comfort.