US Airways has the best holiday online shopping promotion this season, the
It will earn up to 250% on top of the normal miles for merchandise earned through their partners.
The offer is valid through December 30th, and applies to the first (10)purchases which post to your account and are dated by 12/30 (must post by2/28/10).
If you make 5 purchases or more (up to 10) then all of those purchases earn a 250% bonus. Fewer than 5 purchases and the bonus is lower.
But one merchant in particular is crazy-valuable: TrackItBack which gives you stickers with codes on them to attach to things. In theory if you lose those things, people report the item to TrackItBack and they handle getting the item from the person and then to you.
Purchases through them earn 40 miles per dollar normally, so you know it’s a high margin business they’re in.
With this 250% bonus, purchases will earn 140 miles per dollar. Put another way, you’re buying miles at 0.7 cents apiece. That’s not 7 cents each. That’s 7/10ths of a penny. Crazy.
But in order to qualify for the 250% bonus promotion on US Airways miles, we need to have (5) qualifying transactions, and those 5 need to be with different merchants. (You can have multiple transactions with the same merchant, but you need at least 5 separate merchants.)
So we need 4 that aren’t TrackItBack.
Now, there are some great offers like 70 miles per dollar (as a result ofthe bonus) from FTD, and 10,500 points for opening a Sharebuilder account and making one trade.
But for this exercise I’m just interested showing you how to earn the most miles at lowest cost. Feel free to substitute Sharebuilder from any of these below if you’d like, it only takes the bare minimum deposit into your account and purchase of a single share…
But here are four easy, cheap items that can get you the 4 other partners you need.
(1) Donate the planting of a tree at Gaiam, via the US Airways DividendMiles Mall, for $2.
(2) Buy a Restaurant.com gift certificate via ThanksAgain Network. They charge $10 for a $25 gift certificate. A discount code will come out very soon I’m sure, but the at $10 it is still a big winner
(3) Buy a $5 Sears gift card, comes with free shipping.
(4) Bose headphone replacement cable with free shipping came to $4.28 with tax.
Make those transactions, maybe one other to be safe, and then make a large purchase from TrackItBack. They have several packages, so use various combinations of their packages to get the purchase amount you need.
$570 spent with TrackItBack will earn 79,800 miles. 80,000 is the cost of a business class ticket from the US to Europe, e.g. Los Angeles to London orNew York to Istanbul.
The caveats here are that* the bonus miles are scheduled to post on March 1. It is possible that USAirways could make changes to their award chart before then, adjusting the price of award tickets. In fact, I expect them to increase the cost of a Star Alliance business class ticket by 25%. So the prices above could change.
* You have to watch to make sure that the miles from all of your purchases count! If any 1 of your 4 throwaway purchases failed to post, then the math on the bonus for TrackItBack won’t work. So diligence here is key.