Sweet Spots: Best ways to redeem Cathay Pacific Asia Miles in 2024

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles recently devalued its award charts but there is still good value to be found. Let’s have a look at the best routes to redeem your Asia Miles for maximum value.

RelatedBest ways to redeem Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer miles

How to accumulate Asia Miles?

1) Credit cards

The majority of credit cards in Singapore have Asia Miles as a transfer partner. This makes Asia Miles very easy to earn, if you are based in the country.

2) Flight credit

Asia Miles members can credit their paid flights on oneworld or partner airlines to the Frequent Flyer Program (FFP).

Non-alliance partner airlines include major airlines like SWISS, Lufthansa and Air New Zealand.

Click here to view the accrual rates (sign-in required).

Travellers can earn Asia Miles when flying with the above airlines

3) Convert Marriott points to Asia Miles

Marriott Bonvoy members can convert their Marriott points to Asia Miles at a ratio of 3:1.

For better value, members can convert in blocks of 60,000 Marriott points to receive 5,000 bonus miles; for a total of 25,000 Asia Miles.

This method does not give you great value, as there are better ways to use Marriott Bonvoy points. However, it is an easy way “buy” Asia Miles to top up on your account balance, if needed.

4) Make purchases through shopping portals

Members can earn Asia Miles on retail purchases made through the FFP’s shopping portal.

On top of that, Asia Miles can also be earned on hotel bookings made through Kaligo and Rocketmiles.

Asia Miles validity can easily be extended by making purchases through the above methods.

Redeem Asia Miles for Cathay Pacific Business Class (read my review)
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What are the Pros and Cons of Asia Miles?

Pros:

  1. Miles/Points transferrable from most Singapore credit cards
  2. 18-month miles validity can be easily extended by redeeming or earning Asia Miles (incl. cheap purchases made on the shopping portal)
  3. Mixed-cabin award bookings are possible (e.g. Business + First Class)

Cons:

  1. Fuel surcharges (if any) are imposed on award bookings
  2. Poor award rates on partner airlines, especially those that come with fuel/carrier-imposed surcharges
  3. Weaker mileage accrual for (Business Class and above) paid flights on oneworld airlines (vs Alaska Mileage Plan)
  4. Miles do not go on sale, unlike some FFPs

Asia Miles Award Redemption Charts

Asia Miles adopts distance-based charts for miles redemptions.

Award Chart for Cathay Pacific-operated flights

This award chart shows the amount of miles required for redemptions on Cathay Pacific-operated flights only.

Y: Economy Class
PY: Premium Economy Class
J: Business Class
F: First Class

Distance
(in miles)
YPYJF
1 – 7507.5k11k16k
751 – 2,750
(type 1*)
10k20k28k43k
751 – 2,750
(type 2**)
12.5k23k32k50k
2,751 – 5,00020k38k58k90k
5,001 – 7,50027k50k84k125k
7,501+38k75k110k160k

*Type 1: Includes cities such as Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Seoul, Perth, Sydney and Beijing.
**Type 2: Includes all cities in Japan, Indonesia, India and Nepal.

Award Chart for flights operated by Partner Airlines

Unfortunately, Asia Miles does not publish an award chart for award bookings made on partner airlines. Members can check the amount of miles required by searching the route (sign-in required).

Nonetheless, here’s an unofficial award chart for flights operated by partner airlines, based on what I’ve gathered.

Distance
(in miles)
YPYJ
1 – 75010k14k20k
751 – 2,750
(Type 1*)
15k25k33k
751 – 2,750
(Type 2**)
17.5k28k37k
2,751 – 5,00027k43k63k
5,001 – 7,50040k55k89k
7,501+47k80k115k

*Type 1: Includes cities such as Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Seoul, Perth, Sydney and Beijing.
**Type 2: Includes all cities in Japan, Indonesia, India and Nepal.

Partner Airlines with no fuel surcharges

As shared above, Asia Miles passes on fuel/carrier-imposed surcharges (i.e. YQ/YR) on award flights (if any).

Since the recent devaluation, it makes little sense to redeem Asia Miles for flights on partner airlines that come with hefty taxes/fees (e.g. Qatar Airways, British Airways).

Travellers, especially those based in Singapore, can avoid these hefty fees and/or redeem lesser miles through other FFPs like KrisFlyer, Miles&Smiles, Privilege Club and Infinity MileageLands.

Partner airlines that have little to no fuel/carrier-imposed surcharges on award flights booked through Asia Miles include:

  • Finnair
  • Qantas
  • Malaysia Airlines
  • Fiji Airways

Asia Miles Sweet Spots

Here are some of the best ways to redeem your Asia Miles with little to no fuel/carrier-imposed surcharges. Cathay Pacific-operated flights are also considered, as they require fewer miles.

1) Distance of 0 to 750 miles

Miles required for one-way flights with total distance of up to 750 miles:

RouteAirlineYJ
Singapore

Kuala Lumpur,
Penang,
Kuching,
Phuket
10k20k
Get access to the superb Qatar Airways Singapore Premium Lounge when flying in Business Class in a oneworld airline (read my review)

2) Distance of 751 to 2,750 miles (Type 1)

“Type 1” in this band includes cities like Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Seoul, Perth, Sydney and Beijing.

Miles required for one-way flights with total distance of 751 to 2,750 miles:

RouteAirlineYPYJ
Singapore

Perth
15k33k
Singapore

Hong Kong,
Taipei
10k20k28k
Bangkok,
Ho Chi Minh,
Manila,
Phuket

Seoul
10k20k28k

3) Distance of 751 to 2,750 miles (Type 2)

“Type 2” in this band includes all cities in Japan, Indonesia, India and Nepal.

Miles required for one-way flights with total distance of 751 to 2,750 miles:

RouteAirlineYPYJ
Bangkok,
Ho Chi Minh,
Manila

Osaka,
Fukuoka
12.5k23k32k
Phuket

Fukuoka
12.5k23k32k
Singapore

India,
Nepal
17.5k37k
Bali

Melbourne
17.5k37k
Get access to The Pier lounge when flying in Cathay Pacific Business Class through Hong Kong (read my review)

4) Distance of 2,751 to 5,000 miles

Miles required for one-way flights with total distance of 2,751 to 5,000 miles:

RouteAirlineYPYJ
Bangkok

Helsinki
27k63k
Singapore

Sydney,
Melbourne
27k43k63k
Jakarta,
Bali

Auckland,
Christchurch
27k43k63k
Redeem Asia Miles for Finnair Business Class (read my review)

5) Distance of 5,001 to 7,500 miles

Miles required for one-way flights with total distance of 5,001 to 7,500 miles:

RouteAirlineYPYJF
Singapore

Milan,
Frankfurt,
Amsterdam
27k50k84k
Singapore

Europe
40k89k
Ho Chi Minh,
Hanoi,
Manila

Paris,
London
27k50k84k119.4k*

*Mixed Cabin: Business Class between Southeast Asia and Hong Kong, First Class between Hong Kong and Paris/London.

Bottom line

Post-devaluation, members can still squeeze good value out of Asia Miles, for flights to/from certain regions, on the above-mentioned airlines.

For Singapore-based travellers, many of these sweet spots require positioning to a neighbouring city, which leads to additional costs, unless if one has plan to visit that city during the stopover.

As much as possible, avoid using Asia Miles for the ultra long haul 7,501+ band (e.g. between Asia and North America).

Have a look at the cheapest ways to travel to North Asia and Europe with miles from Singapore cards.

10 thoughts on “Sweet Spots: Best ways to redeem Cathay Pacific Asia Miles in 2024”

  1. Hi Fai, I was looking at the sweet spots today, and more than 70% of the “sweet spot” routes are no longer searchable on Asiamiles. I could not find a single itinerary to get me to Korea/Taiwan/Japan from Singapore for 10,000miles. Only Hong Kong and Koh Samui at 10,000miles seems to have availability, but the taxes even for cathay flights to Hong Kong, are now so much higher, which I find strange. S$220 of taxes on a return economy redemption cathay flight from SG to HK.

    Reply
    • Hi Matthew, unfortunately, Cathay is still badly hit by the pandemic situation, making it difficult to make redemptions on Cathay flights. The airline has also reinstated fuel surcharges on award flights, making Economy class redemptions bad value.

      Reply
    • Hi Najib. You can redeem 30k miles for Business Class flights to some European cities (as shown above). Other than that, you should probably wait for Cathay Pacific to start flying again when Hong Kong relaxes its border.

      Reply
  2. Hi Fai,

    I was looking at your list and one of the sweet spot which interests me is for Singapore to Honolulu on JAL. I tried to search for this route on Asiamiles website but I cannot find it! Or am I doing it wrongly and supposed to search on JAL’s website instead?

    Reply
    • Hi Adam, you are right to search for availability on asiamiles.com. I tried to search the route that you mentioned and only found plenty of availability for Economy in the coming months. However, I do see availability in later months, like on 9 June 2022.

      Reply
  3. Hi,

    Am wondering if there is a specific reason why Singapore-Jeju in business class was not listed in the table? thanks very much!

    Reply

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