You can now pay to earn extra bonus miles from AIR MILES. Called the AIR MILES MAX PASS, the program takes a page from frequent flyer and frequent guest programs that have options to pay to earn bonus miles for flying or staying. As AIR MILES is a shopping program, when you buy a MAX PASS you’ll earn extra bonus miles for shopping at select AIR MILES partners.
Earn up to 40x AIR MILES
This first batch of MAX PASSES are available from two long time partners, Metro and Shell. For both partners you can buy a 20x MAX PASS for $5 or 40x MAX PASS for $10. And you guessed it – those passes will multiply your base miles by 20x or 40x.
The passes, which are limited in quantity must be purchased by October 3 and then purchases between October 2 and 9 will be multiplied. The 20x Shell and Metro passes are available for the first 600 collectors who buy them while the 40x passes are limited to 300 collectors each.
Is there value in these passes?
There definitely can be value in buying these passes. For example, at Metro you earn 1 mile per $20 spent thus if you spend $100 during the promotional period you would earn 5 base miles. With the 20x max pass that would be boosted 100 miles or the 40 times would be 200 miles. Those extra 95 miles are worth $9.98 (taking our valuation of 10.5 cents per mile) and the extra 190 miles from the 40x pass would be worth $19.95. In both of these cases you would be coming out ahead. If you spend even more then of course you will receive even more value from the passes.
To breakeven at Metro you need to spend $47 at Metro while at Shell the breakeven is a little more complicated as it will depend on what you purchase. Ideally, if you can simply buy something in store where you earn 1 mile for every $5 spent so your breakeven is only $11.91. If you are purchasing fuel you earn 1 mile for every 10 to 20 litres purchased depending on which type of gas you buy. Plus with gas prices varying across Canada the breakeven point will be different for collectors.
Wrapping it up
This is an interesting move on AIR MILES part – they are trying out something new with these new pay for play bonus offers. Should they prove successful in this first run I wouldn’t be surprised if we see this become a regular option in the program as we have seen from airline where you can purchases mileage multipliers on your flights and hotels who have higher rates that earn double or some set amount of bonus points.
For these MAX PASSES, the value is definitely there in buying them if you know have some bigger purchases coming up at Metro or Shell. I’m guessing the Metro passes will sell the fastest and most likely sell out as they are perfectly timed for the upcoming Thanksgiving feasts.
Images via AIR MILES