What can you do to boost your miles earn rate and get that upgrade sooner? Here are 7 lesser-known ways to earn more miles today.
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Is it possible to earn miles without physically getting on a plane? Of course – just turn to credit cards. But suppose you’re looking for that extra boost to your mileage account. What other options exist to do so?
In this post, I thought it’d be interesting to look at lesser-known ways of earning KrisFlyer miles. The good news is that whether you’re pumping gas, paying your phone bill, going on a shopping spree or dining out, there’s no shortage of ways to do so in Singapore.
1. Earn miles from petrol
|Shell Escape||Esso Smiles|
|Earn||1 point per litre (1.2 for V-Power)||1 point per litre|
|Convert||350 points = 250 KrisFlyer miles||110 points = 100 KrisFlyer miles|
Motorists who pump petrol at Shell or Esso may already be part of the Escape or Smiles loyalty programs. In addition to redeeming your points for petrol, you can also convert them to KrisFlyer miles.
At Shell, you earn 1 point per litre of fuel (unless you purchase V-Power, in which case you earn 1.2), and can convert 350 points into 250 KrisFlyer miles.
At Esso, you also earn 1 point per litre of fuel, and can convert 110 points to 100 KrisFlyer miles. This makes Esso a slightly better option in terms of the fuel to miles ratio.
2. Earn miles from your phone bill
|Earn||1 point per $1|
|Convert||1,700 points = 750 KrisFlyer miles|
M1 subscribers should know about SunPerks, the telco’s reward program. SunPerks awards 1 point per $1 spent on M1 bills, and 1,700 points can be converted into 750 KrisFlyer miles with no conversion fees.
Unfortunately, neither SingTel nor Starhub offer any opportunities to earn KrisFlyer miles.
3. Earn miles from shopping
|Club 21||Changi Rewards||ZALORA|
|Earn||2 points per $1||$10 = 10/20/60 points, depending on tier||5 KrisFlyer miles per $5|
(bonus 50 miles with >$150 in a single order)
|Convert||5,300 points = 2,000 KrisFlyer miles||600 points = 200 KrisFlyer miles|
If shopping’s your vice, then there are numerous ways to chalk up miles on your purchases.
Fashion retailers Club21 and ZALORA both offer bonus KrisFlyer miles on purchases. With Club21, you can earn the equivalent of 0.75 mpd (miles per dollar) on purchases in Singapore. ZALORA offers 1 mpd on purchases made at their website, with a bonus of 50 miles when you place a minimum of $150 in a single order.
If you prefer more options, Changi Airport’s rewards program, Changi Rewards, allows members to exchange loyalty points for KrisFlyer miles. Your earn ratio depends on your status with the program: entry-level members earn 10 points per $10 spent, top-tier members earn 60 points. That works out to a rate of between 0.33 and 2 mpd.
4. Earn miles from your groceries
|Earn||1 point per $1|
|Convert||2.3 points = 1 KrisFlyer mile|
Ever shopped at Cold Storage and been asked if you have a Passion Card? If you do, tap it and you’ll earn 1 TapForMore point with every $1 spent at Cold Storage, Giant, Jasons, MarketPlace, and Guardian.
This represents an incremental 0.43 mpd on expenditure you would have made anyway, so there’s really no reason not to get a card. It costs $12 for a five-year membership, but you’ll easily earn this back from the F&B savings it offers.
5. Earn miles from your hotel bookings
|Kaligo||Various hotel chains|
|Earn||1 point per $1||500 KrisFlyer miles per stay|
Kaligo works like an OTA (online travel agency) which awards you miles for booking hotel rooms. You can earn up to 12 KrisFlyer miles per dollar on hotels, although the rate for each property varies (and you should certainly compare to other OTAs to ensure you’re not paying way above market).
An important point to note about Kaligo – the website partners with KrisFlyer, but also with banks like UOB, Citibank and DBS. You can choose to either earn miles directly with KrisFlyer (in which case they’ll be deposited directly with no conversion fees) or points with your bank (in which case you’ll need to pay a conversion fee when you transfer). Be sure to do a comparison and see which one you’re better off earning.
It’s also worth mentioning that most hotel chains will award 500 KrisFlyer miles per qualifying stay, so it always makes sense to check. Examples include Langham, Mandarin Oriental, Melia Hotels, Millennium Hotels & Resorts and Pan Pacific.
6. Earn miles from dining and food delivery
|Earn||1-3 miles per $1||100-175 points per fulfilled reservation||1 mile per $1 (min $35 spend)|
|Convert||1,200 points = 1,000 KrisFlyer miles|
I’ve loosely grouped these three under “dining”, but in reality each has a very different use case.
Mileslife is a mobile payment app which allows you to earn between 1-3 miles per $1 spent at selected restaurants at no additional cost to you. Simply make payment through a card linked to the Mileslife app, and Mileslife rewards you with miles on top of what your credit card earns.
Chope is used for making restaurant reservations. Depending on your status, you’ll earn 100-175 points per fulfilled reservation, and you can exchange 1,200 points for 1,000 KrisFlyer miles.
When you don’t feel like heading out, consider foodpanda. So long as your order value is at least $35 (including delivery), you’ll qualify to earn 1 mpd.
7. Earn miles from car rental
|Earn||500 KrisFlyer miles per rental|
When you rent a car from any of the major rental agencies, remember to provide your KrisFlyer number! That’s because you can pick up 500 miles per rental, which will be credited to your KrisFlyer account directly.
Remember that for all the options above, you can double dip on your miles earning. This means, for example, that when I rent a car with Avis and pay with my miles card, I’ll earn miles from both the bank and from Avis.
In and of themselves, it’s unlikely that any of the above will massively accelerate your miles accumulation. That said, every little bit helps, and not leaving miles on the table helps you get on your next free flight faster.
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By Aaron Wong
Aaron started The MileLion to help people travel better for less and impress “chiobu”. He was 50% successful. This is his story.