The Miles & More program returns for clients of a large Polish bank!

The Miles & More program is once again available to Polish bank customers, specifically to Bank Pekao credit card holders. What is the Miles Conversion Rate, i.e. how much do you have to spend on your card to get a free plane ticket?? Aside from tickets, what can you redeem your miles for? Will the Bank Pekao card with connected Miles & More win the hearts of Polish tourists?

Good news for fans of all kinds of loyalty programs, and especially for those who love to fly. After a break, the popular Miles & More program returns for bank customers – in short, the opportunity to make everyday purchases and at the same time collect points that can be converted into, among other things, for plane tickets. The operator of this program is Star Alliance, an alliance of dozens of European airlines, including our LOT.

You can use the Miles & More program directly by registering on the site and earning miles when purchasing airline tickets and other services offered by Star Alliance airlines. But just a few years ago, the most profitable way to participate in the Miles & More program was to obtain a bank payment card, thanks to which you could collect points on everyday purchases and convert them into miles.

However, banks have withdrawn from offering cards with Miles & More. And not just from this airline's loyalty program. Several years ago, Raiffeisen Bank withdrew from issuing cards in cooperation with Wizzair. In return, City Handloy stopped cooperation with British Airways. In the fall of 2021, mBank closed the airline card linked to the Miles & More program, and half a year later, Diners Club, which also introduced the Miles & More loyalty program, withdrew from the Polish market.

Banks' participation in this type of program is likely to be a major advantage for customers, because they can more quickly collect the miles needed to redeem a free or cheaper airline ticket. The bank hopes to attract more high-end customers (travelers) who will pay with cards more often because they will be incentivized with a free plane ticket reward.

Perhaps the cost of participating in the program (perhaps banks participate in financing the free tickets distributed to their customers under the Miles & More program) is too high? Let us also remember that when mBank announced the end of participation in the Miles & More program, we witnessed a pandemic that practically brought travel to a halt, which in turn worsened the situation of airlines and reduced their willingness to cooperate with banks.

But now travel is back in fashion, and airlines are recording an increase in the number of passengers, so we have a big return to cooperation between banks and carriers. In Poland, it will be possible to convert everyday purchases paid with the card into points and miles by customers of Bekow Bank, the country's second-largest bank.

Read also: You will once again be able to collect miles in the Miles & More airline program by paying for everyday purchases with a regular bank card. Good news for travelers

How many zlotys per mile in Miles & More?

What are the rules of the Miles & More program offered by PLL LOT and Bank Pekao as of February 20? Let me start by saying that credit cards are a “points booster.” It's about to Credit card with Żubr, which the bank offers in three types: And two prestige cards For private banking clients: Pekao World Elite Mastercard and Pekao Visa Infinity. You can add a card to the program in a few simple steps in the PeoPay mobile app.

Every customer who enters the program receives 1,000 welcome miles. The “exchange rate” of zloty spent into miles depends on the type of card. In case of credit card with Żubr In the standard version, 1 mile is awarded for spending 20 PLN. The card in the Gold package gives you 1 mile for 10 PLN, and in the Platinum package for 6 PLN. Better conversion rate – 1 mile for 5 PLN – applies to the prestige cards mentioned above.

How many miles do you need to earn to fly somewhere? Bikao Bank states that currently 10,000 miles can be redeemed for a round trip to Barcelona or Paris, 15,000 miles can be redeemed for a ticket to Istanbul, and 35,000 miles can be redeemed for a ticket to Tokyo.

How many miles and at what time will we earn depending on the turnover of the card? The bank calculated this on the example of the Żubr card in the Platinum version, where – let me remind you – the conversion rate is: 1 mile for 6 PLN. A customer who spends PLN 2,500 per month using the card will accumulate 5,000 miles per year, thus Two years later, he could fly with LOT to get points to Barcelona or Paris (and back).

In the case of a customer with a standard card, achieving this goal is rather a distant future. Because to collect 10,000 miles, you must have a turnover of 200,000 PLN on the card (conversion rate: 1 mile for 20 PLN). Everyone can easily calculate how much time it takes. When spending PLN 2,500 per month using the card, for example, We will not achieve the required sales volume until after 80 months, that is, after more than 6 years.

Will cards with bison win the hearts of tourists?

And if anyone is frustrated by the suggested conversion rates, Bikao Bank boasts that its cards can make traveling easier and more enjoyable in many ways. Owners can, among other things: Free to use Business check-in at Chopin Airport In Warsaw. Cards are also included Chwile's Mastecard loyalty program is invaluable (With increasing pip multiplier).

In addition, users of gold and platinum cards can use the so-called Fast trackAny quick safety briefing, Airport lounges in case of flight delay Attached to cards Travel insurance.

We've made it to February, and there are still a few months until the holiday season, but it's already time to think about choosing or changing financial services and products that can help you during your trip. Are Pekao Bank credit cards a good option? currently Nearly 100,000 customers use credit cards with Żubr. The bank reveals that thanks to the Miles & More programme, it wants to sell tens of thousands of cards this year. Will you be able to achieve this goal?

I'll start with the strengths. To get a credit card with Żubr, you do not need to have a personal bank account. Moreover, the card in the standard version is unconditionally free. In the Gold version, the cost is 19 PLN per month, and to reset the fee to zero, you must have a turnover of at least 2000 PLN per month. The “Platinum” card costs 39 PLN per month, and in order not to pay, it needs to have a turnover of 3000 PLN.

Another advantage is the many pre-described services that support travel. Moreover, miles can be redeemed not only for airline tickets, but also for other services, for example, a travel class upgrade (in this case, 8,000 miles are needed).

By using the program as part of a bank card, it is also possible not to lose unused miles. As a rule, miles are valid for three years, but that's enough Every month, the customer completes a transaction for an amount that allows him to get at least 1 mile (5, 6, 10, 20 PLN, depending on the card)So that your old miles don't expire either.

And the negatives? There is definitely a poor conversion rate for PLN to miles on the basic version of the card. The prospect of paying with a card for several years for a ticket to Paris can be frustrating. On the other hand, clients who are a bit wealthier, more active and open to the world, are known to use this type of software. In their case, the first choice card will be the Gold or Platinum version, at a better price.

Currency converter? It can be beautiful

Finally, a word about the exchange rate rules applicable to credit cards with Żubr. Because since we are talking about a comprehensive product for travelers around the world (this is what Pekao Bank advertises), it is difficult to avoid this topic. For years, at “Subiektivno o Finansach” we have been encouraging you to choose the “right” cards, that is, the ones that will help you avoid high spreads and currency conversion fees when paying abroad. Cards that meet this definition include currency cards, multi-currency cards (one PLN card linked to several currency subaccounts) or non-prevalent cards (a PLN card with good rates from the interbank market).

In the case of credit cards, this is impossible, because the card is in fact a loan, and our regulations – after “riding” with Swiss franc loans – practically prohibit banks from granting credits and loans in foreign currencies.

So, you cannot get a credit card, for example, in Euros, we are stuck with “loans” in PLN. When paying with this card (debit or credit), two models can be distinguished today. The bank either converts the payment from a foreign currency to Polish zloty at a good interbank exchange rate, but adds a commission to the conversion. The second option is Transfer at a much higher bank rate, but without any currency conversion commission. This is the second model used by Pekao Bank for credit cards with Żubr. Recently I was calculating which model is most useful from a customers point of view. to request? It was almost the same thing.

But there is also a third path that Bikao Bank can take – the so-called cardless, that is, settled at good interbank rates and without currency conversion fees. If I also take out travel insurance, the services that allow me to feel like a VIP when traveling (express check-in, airport lounge), and the conversion of PLN into miles in the Miles & More program will give me a real chance of getting a plane ticket in a year or a year and a half. … Such a card could conquer the heart of many Polish tourists.

Also listen to the podcast “Financial Sensations of the Week”: In Episode 198 we talk about the fact that Poland has become a destination for real estate investors from all over the world, about the financial plans of Poles, and about the fact that every quarter of us does not plan anything. The podcast also talks about dividend investing – the biggest failure of the last 20 years and the coming redemption – and the fact that the debate over CPK is not about the airport, it is about the railways. Maciek Samcik and Maciek Bednarek are inviting you.

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Where will you get the best rate?

Are you afraid of inflation? Are you wondering what to do with your money? See “Okazjomat Samcikowy” – constantly updated classifications of deposits and savings accounts, as well as personal accounts, corporate accounts and credit cards. All tables can be found in the “Categories” tab on the home page of www.motywnieofinansach.pl.

>>> Best term deposits

>>> Best savings accounts

>>> Best personal accounts

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Banner image: Maciej Bednarek

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