Earn 500 Extra Airline Miles with Shopping Portal Holiday Bonuses
We’re always telling readers not to leave points and miles on the table. Maximizing the points you earn on every purchase, however big or small, is key.
Most airlines and even some banks run shopping portals, which allow you to earn more points on your purchases – with bigger multipliers based on the store you shop at. These never come close to huge sign-up bonuses you can get after opening credit cards, but it’s a good way to keep earning points and miles.
It seems some airlines are in the holiday spirit. American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, and United Airlines are each running promos through the end of the week, offering bigger bonuses for holiday shopping.
Read on to learn how it works and how you can earn some extra miles.
How Shopping Portals Work
Getting these extra points or miles is easy any time of the year.
Most airlines and several banks have third-party shopping portals. Each works the same way: offering consumers an incentive for shopping at different retailers affiliated with the portal. In exchange for directing you to a specified retailer, the portal will take a cut of any purchase you make from the retailer, and they’ll give you points or miles as a reward.
The best part is, you don’t need to use a specific, airline-branded credit card to get the bonus points. Simply link your frequent flyer account through the portal and use it to click through to the store to make your purchase. You can apply promo codes or even use a gift card and still get the bonus miles.
With dozens of airlines, each with their own set of retailers and multipliers, it can be difficult to track and decide which portal to use on a given purchase.
One of our favorite tools is CashBackMonitor. Simply type in the store you’re looking for and get a breakdown of all the different shopping portal bonuses (and cashback returns) that are on the table.
Get 500 Bonus Miles for $200+ in Shopping
Three major domestic airlines are sweetening the deal on holiday shopping with almost identical promotions.
American Airlines is offering 500 bonus AAdvantage miles when you spend $200 or more through the AAdvantage eShopping portal.
Alaska Airlines is running the same promotion. You can earn 500 bonus miles by spending $200 or more by Dec. 16 through the Mileage Plan Shopping portal.
And finally, United Airlines is doing the same thing. Get 500 bonus United miles after spending $200 or more through the MileagePlus shopping portal.
Each airline is dubbing this a “last-minute shopping” bonus, so you have to act fast. You have until midnight Sunday, Dec. 16 to get the bonus points.
You can spend $200 or more at a single store or spread it out across several qualifying retailers to get the bonus miles. But the best part of these bonuses is that it’s in addition to the normal store bonus you’ll get for your purchase. Depending on where you’re shopping, this can easily dwarf the bonus itself.
Let’s take the bonus for eBags, where you’ll currently get 15 miles per dollar shopping through United, American, or Alaska.
If you bought this $239 Samsonite carry-on bag – as a gift or for yourself – as an example, you’d earn 4,085 United MileagePlus miles. Or 4,085 AAdvantage miles. Or 4,085 Alaska Mileage Plan miles. That’s 500 bonus points for this promotion plus the 3,585 points for shopping at eBags.
These 500 points aren’t a game-changer by any means. But it’s a pretty stellar return for a purchase you were going to make anyway. And if you’re shopping somewhere that nets you a big multiplier, the extra miles can be substantial.
Use CashBackMonitor to scope out the best of these three portals to maximize your purchase, and get to it!
Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.