Emirates Skywards members can now use their miles to book any seat on any Emirates flight via the airline’s new ‘Cash+Miles’ payment scheme, whether or not there’s a traditional frequent flyer reward seat available.
You can spend as few as 2,000 Skywards miles towards the cost of your ticket, with every 50 miles redeemed chipping US$1 (or around A$1.33) off the total bill.
It’s a great option for members who may only have a small number of miles in their account and wouldn’t otherwise have enough to secure a flight.
For example, spend the minimum of 2,000 Skywards miles and you’d save US$16, equal to about A$21.25 on bookings from Australia.
As part of the changes, Emirates will now refer to its traditional frequent flyer reward flights as ‘Classic Rewards’, for which the number of miles needed to book a flight remains unchanged.
The airline also highlights that during heavy sale periods where airfares are at rock-bottom prices, the number of miles needed to book a flight using Cash+Miles may actually be lower than to book Classic Rewards, as Cash+Miles is pegged against the commercial price of the ticket.
Members booking flights via Cash+Miles will also continue to earn Skywards miles and tier miles based on the type of fare they’ve purchased – unlike Classic Reward flights where no miles are earned.
How to book your Cash+Miles flight
Head to emirates.com, login to your Skywards account and then search for flights via the homepage as you would for any other booking.
Select your preferred flights and fare type and proceed to the payment page where you’ll see the new Cash+Miles option appear:
Miles can be used to cover the fare component of your ticket, but not things like taxes, fees and charges which still need to be paid with real money.
On the next screen, just choose whether you’d like to use as many miles as you can, only the minimum amount being 2,000 or a custom amount of your choosing:
Once decided, you’ll be able to confirm the final cost of your ticket before proceeding to pay the remaining balance via another method, such as using your credit card.
Cash+Miles bookings can’t be made via the Emirates app or mobile website, but can be done on mobile devices by browsing to the desktop version of the site.
You also can’t pay for any codeshare bookings using Cash+Miles – such as to book a Qantas-operated flight under an Emirates flight number – but can use Cash+Miles to book first class, business class and economy tickets on all Emirates flights with an EK flight number.
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