Topic Wiki

Lifemiles Basics

Buying miles:

Lifemiles runs frequent promotions for buying miles, usually for 1.5 cents per mile. Given that Lifemiles has one of the most reasonable Star Alliance award charts, linked here, and doesn't charge fuel surcharges for any partners, buying miles can make a lot of sense.

The promos are usually run in one of two ways.

1. A straight up buy miles promo at 1.5cpm. In all previous buy miles promos, you needed to have an account before the promo starts in order to buy miles. Buying miles though the promo is limited to 75k per year. Be sure to use a credit card that does not charge foreign transaction fees.

2. A share miles promo. You can share miles from one account to another with a 100% bonus on each transaction. The cost is again 1.5cpm. Although in the past you needed to have a Lifemiles account in order to take advantage of the promo, the current promo (7/3-13) does not require a previously open account to participate. In order to maximize the promo on accounts not previously open, open 2 accounts, buy 1k miles at 3cpm, then share back and forth between both account at 1.5cpm. You can share back and forth between 2 accounts an unlimited amount of times provided you stay under the 75k cap. Doing this will most likely trigger a fraud alert with your CC, so it may be a good idea to call them beforehand and give them a heads up.

Lifemiles will also allow you to buy up to 60% of the miles required for booking a flight. The cost starts at 3cpm but is nonlinear. There are sweet spots that allows you to buy a large quantity of miles for 1.5cpm, usually in the 25-35k range. The 1.5cpm sweetspot varies depending on the amount required for the award. Full CPM spreadsheet linked here. (HT: Some dude on FT.)

Lifemiles is known to devalue without warning so hoarding miles is not advised. Buying miles at booking allows to hedge against sudden devaluations.

There is also a Lifemiles credit card  that occasionally offers a 40k bonus. Linked here.

Redeeming Lifemiles:
You can only redeem flights which are shown online. The Lifemiles call center has a horrible reputation and is usually useless. Emailing them usually yields better results if you can wait a day or two.

Lifemiles does not allow mixed cabin redemptions. If you want to book a first class flight with connections, you will need to book all legs in first class or book separate tickets.

Lifemiles is known to have better access to Miles & More and Singapore premium cabins than the rest of Star Alliance.

Lifemiles does not charge any fuel surcharges.

Lifemiles does not allow stopovers or open jaws on awards.

The max layover time that the booking engine will usually show is 8 hours, although people have had success forcing much longer layover times.

Lifemiles does not issue any lap infant award tickets.

Lifemiles cannot book any Austrian flights operated by Tyrolean Airways.

You can access partner confirmation numbers and eticket numbers with your Lifemiles PNR at checkmytrip.com

Lifemiles will occasionally show boomerang routings, which are routings that go from A-B, via C.  ;)

There are many mispriced cities and quirks in the Lifemiles booking engine, allowing for really cheap international awards.  ;)

Canceling a Lifemiles award: (HT, FT)

Lifemiles charges $150 to change an award and $50 to cancel.

Canceling:

1. This will take 20-30 minutes and costs $50
2. You have to pay the $50 up front and will need to have your credit card handy
3. You will need a PIN number for the call center. You set up the PIN online by changing your "information and preferences". Note that this has 3 pages but you only need to change the "Manage the Basics" page and hit "Save". The progress-bar at the top never seems to reach 100% but it doesn't matter. There are two places to press "Save and continue" when you give the PIN. The top button doesn't work. You have to click on the one on the bottom of the screen
4. Call the USA reservations number preferably during business hours +1 800 284 2622
5. Key 2 for English (or 1 for Spanish), 3 for Lifemiles/Corporate, then 1 for Lifemiles
6. If you have got a noisy phone line, hang up and go back to step 4. It is possible to get a good line even from overseas.
7. With luck, someone coherent will answer. If not, don't waste your time, HUCA
8. Give them the PNR to be cancelled
9. You will be asked "do you have a PIN". say yes. You will be put on hold
10. You will be connected to an automated system to key in your PIN. Don't press # afterwards.
11. You will be asked to pay the $50 via an automated system. You'll be asked for your CC number, then you must repeat it. Don't press # afterwards. Then the expiry month, then year, then the id number. Be ready to rattle through the keys as any hesitation causes the system to think you've finished. So, typically you will need 2-3 attempts. [The operator listens in on the automated process and helps you along if you donít key in the right numbers]
13. You will be put on hold for 5-10 minutes while the card is checked. It may fail the first time, for no reason. Go back to step 12.
14. Once the CC is confirmed the operator will ask you for the full billing address, then your name as it appears on the card, then the name of the bank which issued the card.
15. You will be put on hold for 5-10 minutes
16. The operator will confirm the cancellation, or rather confirm it will be put in the queue for manual cancellation.
17. After 24 hours or so, you should receive an E Mail receipt for the $50 (could be in Spanish)
18. Miles will be refunded within 2-3 days, as if you had paid using the maximum miles with no cash to refund all the cash and the miles to what you had before making the booking. The miles sometimes reappear immediately. [Most often, the miles are available within 24 hours.]
19. The taxes - fairly modest - will be refunded in full since you already paid the cancellation fee up front. The refund should hit the CC within a week or so. No refund for the $25 booking fee.
20. The refund will be refunded to the original card.



« Last edited by username on March 11, 2019, 02:37:39 PM »

Author Topic: Lifemiles Master Thread  (Read 95834 times)

Online tov hashem

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #400 on: August 28, 2022, 11:44:44 AM »
Is Lifemiles booking not currently working? There is no availability for any flights for months! (No blue dots.) Can someone confirm? I called customer service but spoke with a brainless agent.
just click on the dates . did you did star alliance search?

Offline moish

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #401 on: August 28, 2022, 02:21:40 PM »
Is Lifemiles booking not currently working? There is no availability for any flights for months! (No blue dots.) Can someone confirm? I called customer service but spoke with a brainless agent.
Yup, seems to be a problem

Offline nonstoptravel101

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #402 on: August 28, 2022, 03:51:01 PM »
Same. No availability even when theres saver space on united...

Offline Dan

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #403 on: August 28, 2022, 05:19:51 PM »
Same. No availability even when theres saver space on united...
Sample route/date?
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

Offline moish

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #404 on: August 28, 2022, 05:55:59 PM »
Sample route/date?
I always use Lifemiles for ET flights to Africa from TLV.
Example routing is TLV-ADD on 10/23 available in Y
« Last Edit: August 28, 2022, 05:59:49 PM by moish »

Offline nonstoptravel101

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #405 on: August 29, 2022, 08:06:06 AM »
Sample route/date?

Yesterday had ord-lga for august 30 x class

Just checked again, UA 246 for tomorrow has saver and lifemiles shows nothing..



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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #406 on: August 29, 2022, 08:09:06 AM »
Lifemiles often doesn't have awards within 1-2 days.
Known bug.
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

Offline nonstoptravel101

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #407 on: August 29, 2022, 08:47:19 AM »
Good to know.

Unfortunately that's the primary perk here for last minute flights on United

Offline Thingywingy

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #408 on: August 29, 2022, 09:19:55 PM »
Lifemiles often doesn't have awards within 1-2 days.
Known bug.
I don't think this is limited to last minute. I am checking YYZ>EWR and not seeing anything even months out. Even though United and AC are showing availability. Has anyone been successful at getting Lifemiles to book even though the site is not showing?
« Last Edit: August 29, 2022, 09:35:37 PM by Thingywingy »
I am sometimes accused of overthinking things. I am still mulling over whether that accusation has merit.

Offline Thingywingy

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #409 on: August 29, 2022, 09:50:07 PM »
Should the Thank You preferred card allow transfers to LifeMiles or is it only for the Premier cards? The only airline it is showing me is JetBlue.

I see now that this DDMS post says that I should be able to transfer even with a Premier card. Are other also noticing that that transfer options on the Citi ThankYou site are not showing all the transfer options?
« Last Edit: August 29, 2022, 10:34:28 PM by Thingywingy »
I am sometimes accused of overthinking things. I am still mulling over whether that accusation has merit.

Offline Shmuff23

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #410 on: August 29, 2022, 10:37:44 PM »
Sample route/date?

October 16 - 19 EWR to YYZ round trip has saver space on United and no availability on lifemiles. Also, no lifemile availability for months in a row. There must be an issue.

Offline moish

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #411 on: August 30, 2022, 05:38:41 PM »
Can't believe none of the travel blogs covered this yet.

Offline zaltz

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #412 on: August 31, 2022, 05:47:10 PM »
October 16 - 19 EWR to YYZ round trip has saver space on United and no availability on lifemiles. Also, no lifemile availability for months in a row. There must be an issue.
Same with bru/lhr to jfk/ewr Feb 7, Saver award on united but nothing on lifemiles

Offline moish

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #413 on: September 01, 2022, 04:06:06 PM »
My Ethiopian routes started working again

Offline ad120

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #414 on: September 02, 2022, 12:50:38 AM »
Any chance LM will ever fix these bugs?
Has anyone ever booked an AC flight with LM?

Offline my08701

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #415 on: September 04, 2022, 11:34:01 PM »
the WIKI says Canceling a Lifemiles award: (HT, FT) Lifemiles charges $150 to change an award and $50 to cancel. Has anyone had experience with them waiving this fee? Would not mind booking for 10,000 a United flight, but it is  far out and not worth it if I cannot change / cancel..

Online yelped

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #416 on: September 05, 2022, 10:10:24 AM »
the WIKI says Canceling a Lifemiles award: (HT, FT) Lifemiles charges $150 to change an award and $50 to cancel. Has anyone had experience with them waiving this fee? Would not mind booking for 10,000 a United flight, but it is  far out and not worth it if I cannot change / cancel..
A year ago they were not charging any fees for cancelling, DTC. I don't know if that is still the case.

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #417 on: September 05, 2022, 11:02:33 AM »
Thank you

Offline Mendel72

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #418 on: September 07, 2022, 12:47:00 AM »
Has anyone ever booked an AC flight with LM?

I did (flight was cancelled due to COVID and refunded).

Offline Lamppost

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Re: Lifemiles Master Thread
« Reply #419 on: September 07, 2022, 01:56:41 PM »
Sorry of this has already been discussed, hope someone can help
I booked a LM ticket for domestic UA trave yesterday fro travel next weel 9/13. Today I called to cancel and asked for a full refund since its within 24 hours. They said they need to create a case and that if the miles are not refunded within 7 business days I should call them. But as of now the reservation is active. Is this the way they normally do things? And will i get the full refund of both cash and miles?
Technically if they don't cancel the tickets until the end of the 7 days I would be a no show since the flight is within 7 business days even though I called now...