How to Earn Airline Miles While Sheltering in Place

Estimated read time 3 min read

As we all continue to shelter in place and do our part to flatten the curve of COVID-19, travel seems like a distant memory. However, just because we can’t physically travel doesn’t mean we can’t earn airline miles to use for future travel. Here are some ways to earn miles from the comfort of your own home:

  1. Sign up for an airline credit card – Many airlines offer credit cards with sign-up bonuses of tens of thousands of miles. Then, use the card for your everyday purchases to earn even more miles. Just be sure to pay off your balance in full each month to avoid interest charges.
  2. Shop through airline shopping portals – Most major airlines have online shopping portals where you can earn bonus miles for making purchases at popular retailers like Amazon, Macy’s, and Target. Simply log in to the airline’s shopping portal, click on the retailer you want to shop at, and then make your purchase as usual.
  3. Use an airline dining program – If you frequently dine out (or order takeout during quarantine), sign up for an airline dining program like United MileagePlus Dining or Delta SkyMiles Dining. Just link your credit or debit card to the program and you’ll earn miles for every dollar spent at participating restaurants.
  4. Book and cancel hotel stays – This method is a bit more time-consuming, but it can pay off if you have a lot of free time on your hands. Book a hotel stay through an airline’s hotel booking portal, and then cancel the reservation a few days later. Many airline hotel booking portals offer a small amount of miles just for making a reservation, so you can earn miles without actually traveling.
  5. Take online surveys – Many airlines partner with survey companies like e-Rewards and e-Miles that allow you to earn miles by taking surveys. It may not be the fastest way to earn miles, but it’s a simple and easy way to earn a few miles a week.
  6. Buy miles – If you’re close to having enough miles for a free flight, consider buying a few miles to top off your account. While it’s not the cheapest option, it can be worth it to save money on a future flight.
  7. Stay informed – Keep an eye out for special promotions and offers from your favorite airlines. Many airlines offer bonus miles for completing certain tasks or making specific purchases, and you don’t want to miss out on any opportunities to earn extra miles.

While earning miles may not be the same as actually traveling, it can help you feel like you’re making progress towards your next trip. And with airlines offering increased flexibility and waived change fees, there’s no harm in booking future travel now. So, take advantage of these opportunities to earn miles while sheltering in place, and you’ll be jetting off on your next vacation before you know it.

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