Miles & More is the largest traveler loyalty program in Europe. The program was originally launched by Lufthansa 20 years ago, a few years after the collapse of the Berlin Wall and during the peak of Fresh Prince of Bel-Air's cable TV reign. Since then, the program has been adopted by 13 European airlines, and allows members to redeem frequent flyer miles with Star Alliance and other partner airlines. Here are the 8 ways to earn enough miles to fly while still grounded.
1. Sign-up for a Lufthansa M&M Credit Card
The Lufthansa M&M World Business Mastercard is currently offering a 15,000-mile Welcome Bonus. This is a definite leap from the standard 4,000 miles usually given to European members. The card boasts numerous extra perks such as travel and rental car insurance, but no perks are as great as your M&M miles never expiring - a perk that is shared only with status holders.
Miles Earned: 15,000
2. Drop Euros with M&M Credit Cards
The standard earn rate with the M&M credit cards are 1 mile for 1€ spent. However, the M&M program is renowned for their great promotions and a member's ability to accumulate miles (both award and status) in a flash.
With the Lufthansa M&M Mastercard, new cardholders earn 20% more miles per Euro spent on the card within the first 2 months (up to 20,000 EUR).
Also, certain months offer double the miles earned for each Euro spent - this October is one of those months!
Miles Earned: 40,000
3. Open an Account with DKB… It's worth it
If you open up a Deutsche Kredit Bank checkings and savings account you will get a sign-up bonus of 7,500 miles (or 5,000 without the current promotion).
If you also use DKB as your Gehaltskonto, or the account where your employer deposits your salary, you are eligible for an additional 5,000 miles.
In addition, if you connect your account with the Lufthansa Miles & More credit card, you will get even more miles… a whole 5,000 more! Cha ching!
Miles Earned: 17,500
4. Already Bank with Deutsche? Refer a Friend!
Deutsche Bank has a fairly generous referral program. If a qualifying customer refers a friend to open a new account, the account holder is subject to some serious gift-showering. This means a selection from a few hopeless kitchen gadgets, or for the M&M collector: a whopping 15,000 miles!
Miles Earned: 15,000
5. Got a Few More Friends? Refer Them Too!
Deutsche Bank isn't the only financial institution willing to cough up some mileage for friend referrals. Both the Lufthansa M&M World Business Mastercard and DKB will gift 10,000 and 5,000 miles respectively for referrals. Sure your friends may stop speaking to you, but with all of your collected referral miles, who needs em'?
*DKB awards 50,000 DKB points which can be exchanged for 5,000 M&M miles
Miles Earned: 10,000 + 5,000
6. Shop, Spend, and Shop Some More
Why not spend recklessly when there are heaps of M&M miles to earn? Okay, maybe that was a tad excessive.
But even if you aren't one for hyper-consumption, there are more than 250 Miles & More partners that regularly offer up to 3 miles for every Euro spent or a fixed lump sum of miles.
For example: renting a car at Avis will give you 3 miles for every Euro spent; spending the night at hotel giant, Best Western will fetch you a comfortable 1,000 miles; and a 1-year subscription with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper offers an enticing 15,000 miles.
With several M&M partners stretched across the board, it's easy to earn miles by spending. There are countless products and services available that you would likely purchase anyways, but can also earn miles on.
Miles Earned: Mo' Money = Mo' Miles
7. Jump On the Amazing Promotions
M&M constantly has cool promotions as an alternative way to earn extra miles. These promos are ever-changing, but on-going ones include: writing reviews for Webmiles, Air Berlin Topbonus, and Baltic Miles. Writing one of these published reviews can earn you between 150-300 miles per post.
Past promotions range from uploading a Holiday photograph to the DKB website for 1,000 miles, to quintupling your miles earned when buying flowers at participating shops.
A current promotion with HolidayCheck lets you earn up to 1,000 miles for writing Hotel reviews (100 miles per published review, up to 10 a month). Check out this FlyerTalk thread on current M&M promotions.
Miles Earned: 1,000+
8. WWPMD: What Would "Pudding Man" Do?
We've all been mesmerized by the story of the "Pudding Man", David Phillips who earned over 1 million AAdvantage miles from buying $3,000 USD worth of pudding. By discovering similar program loop-holes, we can all have a piece of this mile-dense chocolatey pudding pie.
For instance, this summer Swarovski had a limited time promotion that gave customers 3,000 miles per purchase at participating boutiques in Switzerland. The best part you ask? There was no minimum purchase amount attached to the promo.
This meant, that when buying the cheapest item in the store (a small clover for CHF 29, or €24), M&M members were getting an incredible CPM buy rate. This particular promo was the equivalent of getting 125 miles per 1 Euro spent. On the Miles & More website, 3,000 miles retails for €85. This promo gave customers a 75% savings when buying miles.
A similar promotion is currently running at participating Swarovski boutiques until October 31st, however a minimum purchase of CHF 99 (or €81) has been put in place.
Miles Earned: A Gazillion
Let's Add Up Our Miles
With Lufthansa's Miles & More Program, your earning potential is determined by your unshakable commitment to a life of miles.
We couldn't assume that everyone would be a devotee to the cause, so we only included the fixed earn-miles into our calculation.
The "B+" Student
Mile-MethodMiles EarnedMiles & More Sign-up Bonus 500Lufthansa M&M Credit Card Welcome Bonus 15,000Open a DKB Bank Account 17,500Refer a Friend to Deutsche Bank 15,000Refer a Friend to Lufthansa M&M Credit Card 10,000Refer an Amigo to DKB 5,000Total63,000
Even with the "extra-curricular" earn methods excluded, you could still rack up an impressive 63,000 miles - all without any immediate spending!
The Teacher's Pet
Mile-MethodMiles Earned"B+" Student Total 63,000Spend €5,000 on M&M Credit Card 10,0001 Year Newspaper Subscription 15,000Stay 1 Night at the Best Western 500Write Hotel Reviews for 1 Month 1,000Write 2 Webmiles Review 600WWPMD: Buy Bling at Swarovski x10 30,000Total120,100
In this life, being a keener goes a long way and the Miles & More program is no different. But just how long of a way?
Up, Up and Away! But How Far?
Business Class Reward FlightMiles RequiredRetail PriceTaxes & Fees€ CPMBerlin to Munich 35,000€609€153 1.30Berlin to London 45,000€1,054€295 1.69Berlin to Madrid 45,000€1,032€250 1.74Berlin to Delhi105,000€3,458€5982.72Munich to Johannesburg105,000€4,222 €4923.55Berlin to Panama City120,000€5,118€6163.75Geneva to Las Vegas105,000€4,962 €575 4.17Frankfurt to Dubai 70,000€3,498€4144.44Last Minute: Frankfurt to San Francisco105,000€5,988 €4885.24
The great thing about Lufthansa's Miles & More program (and most other travel loyalty programs) is that the number of required miles to fly are fixed. This is quite beneficial to those flying last minute, travelling uncommon routes, or flying in and out of small costly airports.
Lufthansa is especially great for last-minute award flights in Business and First Class. The airline is known for opening up additional award seats in these classes within 2 weeks of departure; when the retail cost is at a premium. What could be a more satisfying time to redeem?
As such, when redeeming miles and aiming for the highest CPM, it is often best to carve out your own flight plan that remains within the parameters of the program. Where will you go?