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Update: Deal is dead. Hope you got in on it.

Today only, until 10 PM ET, Rocketmiles is offering its biggest bonus ever on hotel bookings: 5,000 bonus miles or points on any of its airline partners for stays that have a check out date before December 31, 2013.

This bonus is open to new and existing customers.

This bonus is large enough that on many Rocketmiles bookings made today, the miles earned will be worth almost as much as the price paid for the hotel room.

For those who don’t know, Rocketmiles is a hotel booking site. Hotel booking sites have huge margins, but they can’t usually undersell the price on the hotel’s site, so most simply offer the same price without differentiation.

Rocketmiles is totally different. It takes those huge margins and rebates as much as it can to its customers in the form of frequent flyer miles on any of the following airlines:

  • Alaska Airlines
  • American Airlines
  • Etihad
  • Air France/KLM
  • Hawaiian
  • JetBlue
  • United
  • US Airways
  • Virgin America

For a general intro post on Rocketmiles, see my first post on Rocketmiles.

What is today’s deal? How would I maximize the value of today’s promotion? How do you make a hotel booking on Rocketmiles? Plus a full Rocketmiles FAQ.

The Deal

  • New reservations
  • with checkout dates before 12/31/13
  • booked on Rocketmiles today before 10 PM ET
  • will earn their normal frequent flyer miles plus 5,000 bonus miles
  • in any Rocketmiles program of your choice.

The reservations must be new. Cancelling existing reservations and rebooking them will not receive the bonus.

Existing reservations will not get an extra 5,000 bonus miles added today.

Each customer can only get one 5,000 mile bonus.

Maximizing the Deal

The miles bonus will be proportionally larger on shorter stays and by choosing the most valuable miles partner.

Stays You Need

If you need to book a hotel stay, you should check Rocketmiles and Kayak.com to see which offers a cheaper price on the hotel you want. Most of the time, the price is the same–which is Rocketmiles‘ goal–but sometimes one is cheaper–usually Kayak.

If the stay is the same price or Rocketmiles is cheaper, book with Rocketmiles and pocket the miles. If Rocketmiles is more expensive, figure out whether the miles are worth the extra cost. Since you’ll get at least 5,500 miles from a booking today, the Rocketmiles price would have to be at least $100 more before I’d consider not booking on Rocketmiles today.

Which Partner?

Theoretically any of the nine Rocketmiles partners could be the best one to credit your miles to, depending on your upcoming travel goals, but I think there are four main options:

1. Virgin America

Virgin America has some absolute steals on its charts like:

These low prices are the reason that 2 Membership Rewards normally transfer to only 1 Elevate point. I’d value 5,000 Elevate points at about $100.

The normal miles earned when selecting Virgin America is lower than all the other airlines on Rocketmiles in my experience. For instance, it’s common to be offered 500 Virgin America points or 1,000 US Airways miles on a Rocketmiles booking. Today, though, that would be 5,500 Virgin America points or 6,000 US Airways miles.

2. US Airways

US Airways is the most valuable mile on my Mile Value Leaderboard. You just cannot beat its award chart, which consistently has lower miles prices than its competitors.

3. United

United miles are super valuable now if you need to top up your account to make a booking before February 1, 2014, when the massive United devaluation kicks in.

4. American Airlines

If you want to book an ultra-luxury award like Cathay Pacific, Etihad, or Qantas First class, you want American Airlines miles.

How to Book

Follow this link to Rocketmiles, specify a type of miles to earn, and perform a search by city and date. The results will display a room price and the total number of miles you’d earn for the booking including today’s 5k bonus.

You can choose to have the results displayed from cheapest to most expensive or from most to fewest miles.

My Plan

I wasn’t planning on staying in a hotel the rest of this year. But some of the prices are tempting. I could snag one night in a Waikiki hotel for only $180 after tax and get almost $120 worth of US Airways miles for the stay.

That means if I would get $60 of value out of the room, it’s a good deal. I don’t know if I can get that much value out of a room, but I will try to make the numbers work.

Rocketmiles FAQ

For Rocketmiles‘ explanation of itself, see How It Works.

Terms and Conditions

Earn 5,000 bonus miles/points for new reservations booked between 8:00AM (CT) and 9:00PM (CT) on November 5, 2013 with a check-out before December 31, 2013. Limit 1 bonus per customer. All miles/points displayed on the site are inclusive of the bonus and will be awarded after completed stays. Existing reservations that are cancelled and rebooked do not qualify for bonus miles/points. This promotion can not be combined with any other bonus mile/point offers. Promotion ends November 5, 2013 (9:00 PM CT). See full terms & conditions here.

Qualifying Activity: To qualify for the Rocketmiles Anniversary Promotion, a new reservation must be made through www.rocketmiles.com/anniversary using this special promotional link on November 5, 2013 between 8:00 AM CT and 9:00 PM CT, and have a check-out date no later than December 31, 2013. The reward offer you see when searching Rocketmiles using this link will show the 5000 bonus miles if eligible. Limit one (1) bonus per customer. Any subsequent bookings will not qualify for the miles/points bonus, but will still earn the standard reward amounts. BONUS MILES/POINTS CAN NOT BE ADDED RETROACTIVELY TO EXISTING BOOKINGS. THIS PROMOTION CAN NOT BE COMBINED WITH ANY OTHER BONUS MILE/POINT OFFERS. ROCKETMILES RESERVES THE RIGHT TO DISQUALIFY AND ADJUST ANY BONUSES RESULTING FROM THE CANCELLATION AND REBOOKING (SAME SEARCH CRITERIA) OF AN EXISTING ROCKETMILES RESERVATION (OR IF IT DETERMINES, IN ITS SOLE DISCRETION, THAT ANY CUSTOMER HAS APPLIED BONUSES TO MORE THAN 1 PURCHASE). Bonuses can be disqualified and reversed at the sole discretion of Rocketmiles for any actions that breach these terms, including but not limited to fraud, deception, and technical errors. Please allow up to 4 weeks for bonus miles/points to post in a qualifying member’s account after hotel stay is completed and the qualifying member has met the stated conditions. For complete Terms and Conditions of Use please visit www.rocketmiles.com/terms.

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