Singapore Airlines introduced the Pay with KrisFlyer Miles option in 2013 and this is my review of what I think they are actually worth when you use KrisFlyer Miles in this way. If you are interested in what a KrisFlyer Mile is worth for standard redemptions then please check out my previous post on that topic.
I’m also keen for any views on this, do you value them differently? Leave a comment below!
What is Pay with KrisFlyer Miles?
Up until last year you could only use KrisFlyer miles for a full award redemption on flights. Now you can mix cash and KrisFlyer Miles for Singapore Airlines and SilkAir flights. This was great news for those that only had small amounts of KrisFlyer miles, or those with expiring balances. It also puts Singapore Airlines and it’s KrisFlyer program on par with other frequent flyer programs.
How do you book with Pay with KrisFlyer Miles?
When Singapore Airlines released the details of this new offering it actually launched a specific website explain what it is and how to use it. You can find the website here: www.paywithkrisflyermiles.com.
It’s a pretty simple process, but is only available right at the end during booking.
What’s a KrisFlyer Mile worth when using the Pay with KrisFlyer Miles Option?
You can read my previous post on what a KrisFlyer Mile is Worth for standard Singapore Airlines redemption here. When you use the Pay with KrisFlyer Miles option you are basically substituting the cash payment by paying with KrisFlyer Miles. But you aren’t getting the same value or worth a you might do from a regular award redemption, I’ll explain below.
How much you are getting back for you KrisFlyer Mile:
I did a dummy booking for an economy flight from Singapore to London (16th July-23rd). The Economy cost was SGD 2301.60, if I were to pay some of that with 4900 KrisFlyer Miles then it would cost 2251.60. This represents a saving of SGD 50, not much but that doesn’t matter really, what we want to know is the value. If we use the same value formula as I used in the KrisFlyer worth post we can see that the value is (2301.60-2251.60)/4900 the KrisFlyer Miles are worth nearly exactly 1 cent per Mile.
Economy flight from Singapore to London (16th July-23rd) – Value 1 cent per KrisFlyer Mile:
I did this on a number of different bookings including paying for Economy, Business, First and Suites – long haul and short-haul and they all came back with the same value per KrisFlyer Mile of 1 cent. The value of the KrisFlyer Mile does not change (well it did but only by 0.00001 cent!) whether you use the minimum of 5000 or 100,000 KrisFlyer Miles. So effectively it’s a straight transfer rate that you are getting for your KrisFlyer Miles.
Economy flight from Singapore to Bangkok (16th July-23rd) – Value 1 cent per KrisFlyer Mile:
Using the Pay with KrisFlyer Mile option for 100% payment Singapore to Bangkok (16th July-23rd) – Value 1 cent per KrisFlyer Mile (Economy):
- KrisFlyer Award Saver Value: 0.6 cents/mile (see this post for the calculation)
- Pay with KrisFlyer 100% Value: 1 cent/mile
Because all other redemptions meant a value of over 1 cent per KrisFlyer Mile it means this is the only case where you are sure you’d be getting better value for your KrisFlyer Mile when a saver award is available.
The only other time when it may of better value is when you book a Flexible Award, where for Economy including Long Haul the value drops to below the 1 cent per KrisFlyer Mile mark. I used the same formula as above but using 119,000 and 161,500 Miles for Standard and Flexible redemptions.
- Economy – Standard Redemption Value – 1.2 cents / KrisFlyer Mile (so less value)
- Economy – Flexible Redemption Value – 0.93 cents / KrisFlyer Mile (better value)
For business class and First Class/Suites you should be using your KrisFlyer Miles for award redemptions rather than Pay with KrisFlyer Miles as they offer way above 1 cent per mile in all cases.
Remember as well even is you pay part with KrisFlyer Miles you can earn KrisFlyer and Elite miles if the fare is eligible to earn miles. KrisFlyer and Elite miles will be earned in proportion to the fare (excluding taxes), that you have paid with your credit/debit card.
KrisFlyer and Elite miles will not be earned if your ticket has been paid entirely with miles.
So When to Use Pay with KrisFlyer Miles?
These are the scenarios that you should be using Pay with KrisFlyer Miles:
- Expiring Miles – this is by far the best use for this option, if your KrisFlyer Miles are expiring then you might as well get some value back on your next booking
- Economy Short Haul – as you can see they are worth nearly double compared to an Award Saver redemption due to the cost of the taxes and fees (that you still pay for on an Award booking)
- Flexible Award Bookings on Economy (long or short-haul).
- Ease of use – I know that there are also those that may just want to use their KrisFlyer Miles up whenever they can and this is by far the simplest method to use your miles.
You can find more about the Pay with KrisFlyer option here on the Singapore Airlines website.