MileValue is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as CreditCards.com. This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.

Note: Some of the offers mentioned below may have changed or are no longer be available. You can view current offers here.


US Airways has announced a new Share Miles promotion through June 30, 2014.

US Airways Share Miles promotions are routinely my favorite way to buy US Airways miles for myself. See here and here for my excitement.

Last year I used 100,000 miles I purchased during a Share Miles promo and 25,000 other miles transferring from Starpoints to book myself a First Class award to the World Cup in United Global First.

Screen Shot 2014-06-16 at 9.53.25 PM
My Bed for 10 Hours Each Way

During previous Share Miles promotions, you could send 50,000 miles from one US Airways account, and the receiving US Airways account would get 100,000 miles. The sender would pay $567.50, and a net of 50,000 miles would be created at a cost of 1.13 cents per mile.

The original receiver could even send 50,000 miles back + another 50,000 bonus, so that both sides would end the day with 50,000 new miles at a cost of 1.13 cents each.

At that price for buying miles, a roundtrip to Europe in business class would be only about $1,300 all in after taxes, an incredible deal.

US Airways just came out with a new Share Miles promotion through June 30, 2014, but it is far different and far worse.

Screen Shot 2014-06-16 at 5.30.36 PM

  • Why is the new Share Miles deal worse?
  • Should you participate in the Share Miles deal?

The new 100% Share Miles deal is worse for two reasons:

  1. The price of transferring miles has gone up 50%.
  2. The bonus miles are split between sender and receiver.

The new cost to share miles is 1.6125 cents per mile + $30. The old cost was 1.075 cents per mile + $30.

The old bonus was received 100% by the receiver. The new bonus is 50% for the receiver and 50% for the sender. This can create awkwardly orphaned miles, though there is a simple solution.

Old Share Miles vs. New Share Miles on One Transfer

On one transfer, there is a huge difference between the old and new Share Miles promotions in terms of cost and where the miles end up.

Old Share Miles Promo

Person A transfers 50,000 miles + bonus to Person B

Person A starts with 50,000 miles and ends with 0 miles, having spent $567.50.

Person B starts with 0 miles and ends with 100,000 miles.

New Share Miles Promo

Person A transfers 50,000 miles + bonus to Person B

Person A starts with 50,000 miles and ends with 25,000 miles, having spent $836.25. The reason Person A ends with miles is that the 100% bonus on shared miles is split between sender and receiver, so he gets 50% of the miles he sent back.

Screen Shot 2014-06-16 at 11.48.38 AM

Person B starts with 0 miles and ends with 75,000 miles.

Differences

Person A has spent $268.75 extra. Person A has 25,000 more miles under the New Share Miles promo, but Person B has 25,000 fewer miles.

The extra cost is obviously a negative. The different distribution of miles is worse too because one account with 100,000 miles can book more possible awards than two accounts, one with 75,000 and one with 25,000 miles.

Old Share Miles vs. New Share Miles on Two Transfers

On two transfers, there is a huge difference between the old and new Share Miles promotions on price, but the miles end up exactly as before.

Old Share Miles Promo

Person A transfers 50,000 miles + bonus to Person B, then Person B transfers back 50,000 miles + bonus

Person A starts with 50,000 miles and ends with 100,000 miles, having spent $567.50.

Person B starts with 0 miles and ends with 50,000 miles, having spent $567.50.

New Share Miles Promo

Person A starts with 50,000 miles and ends with 100,000 miles, having spent $836.25.

Person B starts with 0 miles and ends with 50,000 miles, having spent $836.25.

Differences

When doing back-and-forth 50k-plus-bonus transfers, each party ends up with 50,000 more miles than when he started, just like before. Each person will have to spend $268.75 more than in the past to get there.

The price of the 50,000 miles generated per person has risen from 1.13 cents each to 1.67 cents each.

Is the New Share Miles Promotion a Good Deal

The new Share Miles promotion is far worse than the old promotion, which I thought was a no-brainer to participate in each time it came around. I would speculatively buy US Airways miles for 1.13 cents each.

I do NOT advise speculatively buying US Airways miles for 1.67 cents each during the current Share Miles promotion.

I do think that US Airways miles are the most valuable miles of any major airline because US Airways has a very cheap award chart compared to competitors (see this comparison chart), lax routing rules, and a ton of great partners on which to book Business and First Class awards.

However I expect that in early 2015, US Airways’ chart and American Airlines’ chart will merge into a single, inferior chart. If you’re not confident that you’ll burn your US Airways miles before then for travel until early 2016, don’t participate in this promo.

Key Links

Don’t forget that The US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® is offering 40,000 bonus miles on first purchase. This is the best sign up bonus on the market with no minimum spending requirement attached. This card plus using the current Share Miles promo can skyrocket your balance in a hurry.

You currently need 120,000 US Airways miles for a roundtrip in Cathay Pacific First Class to North Asia or 140,000 US Airways miles for a roundtrip to Australia in Cathay Pacific or Qantas First Class.

Terms and Conditions

Offer available for share transactions made between June 16 2014 00:00:01 PT and June 30 2014, 23:59:59 PT. All transactions are non-refundable. Bonus miles will be awarded upon completion of the transaction. The maximum number Share Bonus miles that can be received by one member for this offer is 50,000 bonus miles. All miles shared beyond this limit will not be eligible for a bonus. The bonus miles will be split evenly between the giver and recipient. The maximum number of bonus miles that can be given by the donor to the recipient is 25,000 miles. All transaction inquiries must be submitted to US Airways Dividend Miles within 90 days from end of promotion. Offer is subject to change. Offer cannot be combined with any other offer. Buy and Gift transactions are not eligible for bonus. Only share transactions made online are eligible for the bonus. Please note that Dividend Miles accounts less than 12 days old are not permitted to Buy, Share or Gift miles. For Gift and Share transactions, the recipient account must also be 12 days old. All US Airways Dividend Miles terms and conditions apply.

Miles are shared for $0.015 per mile plus a processing fee of $30 and a tax recovery charge of 7.5%. GST/HST will be charged to Canadian residents. Miles purchased through Buy, Share or Gift Miles do not count towards Dividend Miles Preferred status. All other Dividend Miles Terms and Conditions apply. Miles may be used based on award availability at the time of booking. Please note that Dividend Miles accounts less than 12 days old are not permitted to Buy, Share or Gift miles. All purchases are non-refundable.

————————————————————————————————————
Follow MileValue on Twitter and Facebook. And sign up to receive one free daily email every morning with all of the day’s posts!

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Just getting started in the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card for you to start with.

With a bonus of 60,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months, 5x points on travel booked through the Chase Travel Portal and 3x points on restaurants, streaming services, and online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs), this card truly cannot be beat for getting started!


Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

The comments section below is not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all questions are answered.