Don’t want to pay cash for your flight tickets? Pay with your miles instead. There are quite a few credit cards in the UAE that give you the option of earning miles every time you spend and when you’ve accumulated enough miles, you can redeem them against flight tickets and upgrades.
We take a look at three of the most popular miles programs in the UAE and the number of miles you need under each of these, to buy flights to commonly chosen destinations:
- Emirates Skywards – 47,500 miles for a flight to Mumbai, 77,500 miles for a flight to London and 47,500 miles for a flight to Beirut.
- Etihad Guest* – 22,996 miles (cash surplus of AED 199) for a flight to Mumbai, 62,330 miles (cash surplus of AED 735) for a flight to London and 24,206 miles (cash surplus of AED 215) for a flight to Beirut.
- Air Miles* – 67,857 miles for a flight to Mumbai, 175,000 miles for a flight to London and 70,238 miles for a flight to Beirut.
Based on the miles program you subscribe to and the mile-earning criteria on your credit card, here’s how much it would cost you to fly to Mumbai, London or Beirut and back.
|Credit card||Miles program||AED spend to earn 1 mile**||AED spend for a flight to Mumbai||AED spend for a flight to London||AED spend for a flight to Beirut|
|Infinite credit cards|
|ENBD Skywards Infinite card||Skywards||3.70||2.47||117,325-175,750||191,425-286,750||117,325-175,750|
|ADCB Etihad Guest Above Infinite card||Etihad Guest||1.85||1.23||28,484-42,742||77,401-116,045||29,988-44,996|
|Citibank Emirates Ultima card||Skywards||3.70||2.47||117,325-175,750||191,425-286,750||117,325-175,750|
|Platinum credit cards|
|ADCB Etihad Guest Above Platinum card||Etihad Guest||2.47||1.48||34,233-56,999||92,983-154,690||36,040-60,004|
|Citibank Emirates Ultimate card||Skywards||3.70||2.96||140,600-175,750||229,400-286,750||140,600-175,750|
|HSBC Platinum credit card||Air Miles||1.00||1.00||67,857||175,000||70,238|
|The American Express Platinum Card****||Skywards||4.00||4.00||190,000||310,000||190,000|
|ADIB Etihad Guest Platinum card||Etihad Guest||1.60||1.60||36,993||100,463||38,945|
|Gold credit cards|
|ADCB Etihad Guest Above Gold card||Etihad Guest||3.70||3.70||85,284||231,356||89,777|
|HSBC Advance credit card||Air Miles||1.00||1.00||67,857||175,000||70,238|
|The American Express Gold Card****||Skywards||8.00||8.00||380,000||620,000||380,000|
|ADIB Etihad Guest Gold card||Etihad Guest||2.00||2.00||46,191||125,395||48,627|
|Classic credit cards|
|ADCB Etihad Guest Above Classic card||Etihad Guest||7.40||7.40||170,369||461,977||179,339|
|ADIB Etihad Guest Classic card||Etihad Guest||2.67||2.67||61,598||167,156||64,845|
*For Air Miles and Etihad Guest miles, we’ve chosen the cheapest airfare for a return flight from 1-10 December.
**We’ve used a conversion rate of USD 1=AED 3.7 to convert all USD spend requirements into AED.
***Citi Miles can be transferred 1:1 for partner miles such as Etihad Guest, Delta Skymiles, Qatar Airways, JP miles, and more. In the table, Etihad Guest miles was used as an example.
****AMEX Platinum and Gold credit cards offer 2 Membership Rewards and 1 Membership Reward respectively, for AED 4 worth of spend. These rewards can be transferred to 12 airline mile programs, including a 2:1 redemption for Etihad Guest or Skywards miles.