Huge Hat Tip to reader Daniel for emailing me about this deal. Email me your tips!
Today the AAdvantage eShopping portal tripled the earning rate on magazines.com to 60 American Airlines miles per dollar through November 30, 2013.
Stacked with the ongoing promotion that is awarding up to 2,500 miles for $250 in purchases through the portal (and fewer bonus miles for smaller purchases), you can buy up to 17,500 American Airlines miles for 1.43 cents each until the magazines.com promotion ends. And you even get some magazines thrown in for free.
What is the lowest price you can buy miles from the American Airlines portal for? Should you buy miles speculatively?
To figure out the price at which you are buying miles, subtract the value you place on the magazine from its subscription price.
For instance 28 issues of Sports Illustrated is $26. If you would value those 28 issues at $10, then we’ll imagine that you are paying $10 for the magazines and $16 for the miles.
Divide the extra amount you are paying above what you value the magazine by the miles you will earn to get the price you are paying for the miles.
In this case $26 * 60 miles is 1,560 miles earned from Sports Illustrated at a cost of $16, or 1.03 cents per mile.
The lowest cents per mile will be achieved if you spend $75, $150, or $250 to unlock the next tier of bonus from the tiered promotion.
Buying any of those amounts from magazines.com through the AA portal will result in manufacturing miles for 1.43 cents even if you value the magazines at zero. Buying $250 will earn 15,000 miles at the 60 miles/$ rate plus 2,500 bonus miles from the tiered promotion. That means 17,500 miles can be had for $250.
I would not buy American Airlines miles right now for 1.43 cents without an award in mind that I was nearly ready to book.
I expect a devaluation is the next few months during the American Airlines/US Airways merger, so I am not interested in buying either type of miles speculatively.
Getting Your Miles
If you go through with this deal at the AAdvantage eShopping portal, make sure you read Frequent Miler’s “How to ensure your portal points” post to make sure you get the miles to which you are entitled.