You’ve heard about the miles game, but don’t know where to start. Fret not – with these insider tips and tricks, elevating your travel experience with the KrisFlyer rewards programme has never been easier.
Editor-in-Chief, NYLON Singapore
Get the most out of your daily spend
In 2015, Adele came across a YouTube video of a man who used his miles to fund his travels around the world. Inspired, she started doing some research and realised that one could easily accumulate miles via credit card spending.
Today, the bulk of her miles are earned through day-to-day credit card usage, from groceries to dining and shopping. “I recently changed my car and put the entire down payment on my UOB PRVIMILES Mastercard. That’s a free return ticket on Premium Economy to New York!” she shares. “Earning miles through [everyday expenditure] – which ensures you don’t spend more than you already are – is a smarter and quicker way to your next free flight and upgrades.”
What’s more, by frequently travelling on Singapore Airlines’ premium classes, Adele has managed to accrue enough miles to attain PPS status – the highest KrisFlyer membership tier. “This helps me cut the queues with my family when we’re on holiday,” she says. “It also gives me entry into SilverKris lounges around the world – important especially when you have hours to burn [in between flights].”
Maximise the value of your miles
“I will always redeem ‘Saver’ instead of ‘Advantage’ tickets – [the latter] sometimes requires almost twice the [number of] miles for the exact same flight and seat,” discloses Adele. “Since the difference between [the two] is the availability of the seats, I try to plan and book months in advance.”
Redeeming a higher value seat will also ensure that you get the most bang for your buck. For example, while the miles required to redeem a Business Class ticket may be twice that of an Economy Class ticket, you’ll enjoy thrice as much cost savings. “I always try to book Business or First Class tickets, because it’s just better value,” she explains.
Additional tip: Adele recommends sticking to one airline or alliance when you travel, as this will help you to chalk up miles more quickly.
Founder of lifestyle blog theshutterwhale.com
Accrue miles through hotel stays
“I do a lot of staycations in Singapore when I’m not travelling for business, and these relatively large expenses help me accrue a good number of miles over time,” shares Mark. “In fact, I daresay 60-70% of my miles are accrued by charging my frequent hotel stays to the right card.”
He acknowledges that upgrading his KrisFlyer status hasn’t been easy, as a lot of his Business and First Class flights are made on redemption bookings (which do not earn miles). However, as a Jade member of Shangri-La’s Golden Circle loyalty programme, he was able to make use of the Infinite Journeys programme(which facilitates seamless points conversion between KrisFlyer and Golden Circle) and obtain Elite Gold status this year.
Earn miles on non-travel-related activities
Mark firmly believes that every single transaction made on the right credit card is an opportunity to earn miles. “Flying used to be the only way to earn KrisFlyer miles, but [in Singapore, you can now] earn miles through non-airline-related activities,” he says.
Many credit cards issued in Singapore give cardholders the option to convert their points to KrisFlyer miles, which can then be used for flight upgrades and redemptions. What’s more, you often get to earn attractive bonus miles when you pay annual card fees. Do your research and select the right credit card for your spending patterns.
Radio DJ with 987FM
Use your credit card to pay for big ticket items
It wasn’t too long ago that a friend introduced Gerald to the miles game. “He asked if I’m interested in travelling on Business Class,” he recalls. “I thought it was a wedding gift… it wasn’t! It was just him telling me that I could [easily accumulate enough miles] if I [put all my wedding expenses on] the right credit card.”
Indeed, one of the quickest ways to accrue miles is to put big ticket purchases on your credit card – especially if you’re getting married. “[Whether it’s] the wedding dinner, furniture for the new house or even the engagement ring, don’t let it go to waste by paying with a debit card,” advises Gerald.
Spend your miles wisely
Gerald is no stranger to travelling on Singapore Airlines’ Business Class and often shares his experiences on social media. However, not many people know that he’s only purchased tickets once – the rest of his flights were redeemed using miles.
He believes in taking the time to accumulate miles and spending them wisely. “Use [them] to upgrade your flight to Business Class and experience the ultimate [pampering] and impeccable service Singapore Airlines can give you,” he says.
For his upcoming trip to Los Angeles for a Comic Con press junket, he managed to upgrade his flight to Business Class, despite having been booked on Premium Economy. “For only 40,000 miles, I was able to do just that. This is a 20-hour flight we’re talking about! I’m very satisfied with the redemption,” he enthuses.
Additional tip: Get first dibs on KrisFlyer’s latest promotions by signing up for the mailing list at singaporeair.com.