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- Earn 20,000 award miles after your first purchase
- Earn an additional 30,000 award miles when you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
- $89 annual fee
Some readers are going to see this as a niche product, but it’s a great signup offer and two and a half times as big as the usual offer.
It’s from Barclaycard and there are some real gem opportunities for the miles.
There are really two ways to leverage this card.
United domestic first class awards are just 35,000 miles roundtrip
What’s more, the program offers one-way awards at half the roundtrip price. So that’s some cheap first class. When you meet your minimum spend on the card for the full 50,000 mile bonus, you’ll have 55,000 miles in the Miles & More program. That’s more than enough for a roundtrip domestic first class ticket on United, plus a one-way first class award.
Domestic (within one country) award is just 35,000 miles roundtrip for business class. United publishes their domestic forward cabin inventory as “I” or business class, even though they call the product first class.
The Miles & More program adds fuel surcharges onto awards, but there are no fuel surcharges for domestic US award tickets.
The Aspirational First Class Awards You Can’t Get With United Miles
Lufthansa doesn’t offer much first class space to their their partners in advance — Miles & More offers better premium cabin award space to their own members. You can actually book Lufthansa First Class awards more than a couple of weeks out if you’re using these points.
So if you want access to the legendary First Class Terminal in Frankfurt and don’t want to book your tickets in the days prior to departure, Miles & More miles are the best way to get there.
The award chart isn’t cheap at all but it’s the way to get there, and there really isn’t a ton of competition for those seats since US frequent fliers are essentially shut out from competing for them through United.
A new benefit is that the card comes with Lufthansa Business Lounge vouchers.
- You get (2) one-time use Lufthansa Business Lounge Vouchers upon the first purchase.
- Each year thereafter, you get 2 more when “the account remains open and in good standing for at least 45 days after payment of the annual fee.”
Lufthansa’s Business Class lounges are their base-level lounges. Senator lounges are open to Lufthansa Senator members and partner first class passengers (and Lufthansa first class passengers where Senator lounges are the top lounges). Of course, neither lounge type is the First Class Terminal!
Not as Good as the Starwood American Express
For spend on an ongoing basis, the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express is a better play. It earns Lufthansa’s Miles & More miles faster because of the transfer bonuses — for every 20,000 Starwood points you transfer to Miles & More you receive 5000 bonus points. That’s effectively earning 1.25 points per dollar on your spend, compared to one point per dollar for most of your spend with this card.
But Premier Miles & More World MasterCard® 50,000 point signup bonus is a great start to the aspirational trip or to cash in for domestic premium cabin travel.
(HT: Million Mile Secrets)