If you’ve been reading my blog, you know that generally speaking, I don’t particularly care for the Asia Miles program. Here’s a few reasons why you should try to accrue miles on other oneworld partners. Basically in every scenario you can think of, Asia Miles will be more expensive than if you chose Avios or AAdvantage. I try to keep miles in both programs and use the one which charges less for the itinerary I am planning on booking.
Also, keep in mind that when flying Cathay Pacific or Dragonair, not all of the fare classes will accrue miles on Asia Miles or other programs. You’ll need to check the chart with each airline to make sure you’ll get flight credit.
Asia Miles vs British Airways
As with BA, Asia Miles uses a distance based award chart, but the redemption costs for Asia Miles is MUCH higher than that of BA. Let me show you some examples.
- Hong Kong HKG to Taipei TPE Economy Class roundtrip:
15,000 Asia Miles vs 9,000 BA Avios = 6K savings
- Hong Kong HKG to Tokyo NRT Business roundtrip:
50,000 Asia Miles vs 40,000 BA Avios = 10K savings
- Hong Kong HKG to New York JFK Economy roundtrip:
90,000 Asia Miles vs 70,000 BA Avios = 20K savings
Additionally, one way awards using BA Avios are exactly half of roundtrip, which using Asia Miles it’s usually around 2/3 of the roundtrip price.
The main drawback with the BA program is that the award costs are calculated by leg, not by total distance like in the Asia Miles program. So if your itinerary includes many short legs, it may not be best to use BA miles since you’ll be charged for each leg.
Asia Miles Award Zone
|Distance in actual miles|
0 – 600
601 – 1,200
1,201 – 2,500
2,501 – 5,000
5001 – 7,500
7,501 – 10,000
|Awards type||Asia Miles required to claim award|
|One-way Economy Class|
|One-way Premium Economy Class|
|Premium Economy Class|
|One-way Business Class|
|One-way First Class|
Asia Miles vs American Airlines AAdvantage
AAdvantage miles are very easy to accrue, basically any paid fare class will let you accrue miles.
If you fly to North America a lot, and willing to go through Japan, AAdvantage has some great off-peak travel rewards:
- Los Angeles LAX or New York JFK to Tokyo NRT in Economy roundtrip:
60,000 Asia Miles vs 50,000 AAdvantage Miles (off-peak) = 10K Savings
- Hong Kong HKG to Seoul ICN in Economy roundtrip:
30,000 Asia Miles vs 25,000 AAdvantage Miles = 5K savings
- Hong Kong HKG to San Francisco SFO to New York JFK to Hong Kong HKG in Economy:
90,000 Asia Miles vs 70,000 AAvantage Miles (includes free stopover) = 20K savings
I also like the AA program because you can make date changes for free. Asia Miles now charges $25 USD, yuck.
AAdvantage Oneworld Partner Chart