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When you’re traveling to Singapore from the US, you can experience another destination in Europe or Asia without paying more miles!
That’s because Singapore Airlines lets you add a stopover for free on round-trip award tickets. And for just $100 on 1-way award tickets.
I’ll show you how to use your Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou, Starwood Preferred Guest, or American Express Membership Rewards points to fly on Singapore Airlines. And stopover in places like Hong Kong and Seoul!
What’s the Deal?
Link: Singapore Airlines
If you’re traveling to Singapore, there’s a hidden gem in Singapore Airlines’ award program.
You can stopover for up to 1 year at several of Singapore Airlines’ destinations in Europe and Asia on your way to Singapore. And you will NOT have to spend more miles for the extra destination!
Where Can You Plan a Stopover?
Singapore Airlines has several routes between the US and Singapore, all of which have stops en route:
|Singapore Airlines Route||Potential Stopover City|
|Los Angeles → Tokyo → Singapore||Tokyo|
|San Francisco → Hong Kong → Singapore||Hong Kong|
|Houston → Moscow → Singapore||Moscow|
|New York → Frankfurt → Singapore||Frankfurt|
|San Francisco → Seoul → Singapore||Seoul|
Note: Singapore Airlines will add non-stop flights between the US and Singapore in 2018.
According to Singapore Airlines’ rules, 1 stopover can be added to 1-way saver award tickets for just $100, without paying more miles.
Round-trip saver award tickets already allow 1 stopover, but you can add a 2nd stopover for $100.
Standard and full 1-way awards allow for 1 stopover, or 2 stopovers on a round-trip award. However, these awards cost many more miles than the saver level we want to redeem for.
For example, including the 15% online booking discount, a 1-way Business Class saver award ticket from Los Angeles to Tokyo costs 65,875 Singapore Airlines miles and ~$68.
But a 1-way Business Class standard award ticket on the same route would cost a whopping 97,750 miles (with the same taxes and fees).
Because you can add a stopover to the 1-way saver award ticket for only $100, it’s much better to pay this small amount of cash than to spend an additional 31,875 miles.
These stopovers can be as long as 1 year, giving you an amazing opportunity to visit other great cities on the way to or from Singapore!
How Many Singapore Airlines Miles Do You Need?
Singapore Airlines’ award prices are often cheaper than other airlines. And it’s usually easy to find award seats, especially if you book in advance.
Better yet, they also offer a 15% discount if you book award travel online instead of by phone.
Here are Singapore Airlines’ prices for 1-way award tickets between the US and Singapore (including the 15% online booking discount). Round-trip awards are double the price listed below.
|Singapore Airlines Route (1-Way)||Coach Saver Award Cost||Business Class Saver Award Cost||First Class Saver Award Cost|
|Los Angeles → Tokyo → Singapore||29,750 miles||68,000 miles||91,375 miles|
|San Francisco → Hong Kong → Singapore||29,750 miles||68,000 miles||91,375 miles|
|Houston → Moscow → Singapore||31,875 miles||72,250 miles||93,500 miles|
|New York → Frankfurt → Singapore||31,875 miles||72,250 miles||93,500 miles|
|San Francisco → Seoul → Singapore||29,750 miles||68,000 miles||91,375 miles|
In addition to the miles, you’ll pay ~$100 to ~$400 in taxes and fees for each 1-way trip, depending on the destination and class of service.
Singapore Airlines usually has lots of saver level coach award seats available. However, Business Class, First Class, and Suites Class saver award seats can be a little more difficult to find.
You’ll find more award seats when the schedule 1st opens up, which is 355 days before departure, or waiting until a couple of weeks before your flight.
Look for saver level seats, because you’ll pay fewer miles than standard or full awards.
How Do I Book a Singapore Airlines Ticket With a Stopover?
You can NOT book Singapore Airlines award tickets with stopovers online. To book, call Singapore Airlines at 800-742-3333.
Note: Don’t worry, you’ll still get the 15% discount even though you have to call. I’ll explain below!
Before you call, search for the flights you want online to make sure there are available award seats.
Remember, Singapore Airlines does not offer holds on their award tickets. This means you must have the miles in your account before you book.
If you’re transferring flexible points to Singapore Airlines, it can take time for the miles to transfer, depending on the program.
For example, transfers from Chase Ultimate Rewards are almost instant. But if you’re moving points from Starwood Preferred Guest, it can take up to 4 weeks (although in my experience it usually takes 2 to 12 days).
So keep in mind the exact award seats you want might disappear while you’re waiting for your points to transfer!
1. Log-In to Your Singapore Airlines Account
Begin by signing in to your Singapore Airlines account. The log-in menu is at the top right hand corner of the screen.
2. Use the Flight Search Tool
Let’s say we want to book a trip from the West Coast to Singapore, with a stopover in Tokyo along the way.
In order to piece this award together with a stopover, we are going to search the award as 2 separate legs:
- 1-way from Los Angeles to Tokyo, and
- 1-way from Tokyo to Singapore
Begin by selecting “Book a Flight,” and fill in the yellow circle that says “Redeem flights.”
Enter your departure and arrival cities and choose a 1-way or return trip. Then click “Search.”
If a flight is available at the saver level, it will list the price of the ticket. If it says waitlist, it means that the award cannot be guaranteed, but you can join a waitlist to see if it opens up.
While you do not pay for the waitlisted ticket in advance, Singapore Airlines does require that you have enough miles in your account for the trip before you select the option to be put on the waitlist.
Singapore Airlines can contact you at any time prior to your travel date if the seat becomes available. You can decide then if you wish to book the trip, or decline the opportunity.
Once you’ve found available award seats, take note of the dates and flight numbers.
Now that you know the seat is available for the 1st flight, check what’s available for the 2nd flight after your stopover.
Repeat step 2, this time changing the origin and destination to reflect the 2nd flight.
Now that you know seats are available on both flights, it’s time to call to book!
3. Call Singapore Airlines
Call Singapore Airlines at 800-742-3333, and request to book a ticket with your Singapore Airlines miles. Tell them the dates and flight numbers you found online.
More importantly, request that the agent include a stopover for the $100 fee.
Because Singapore Airlines doesn’t offer the online booking discount over the phone, remind the agent that you still qualify for the 15% mileage discount because you can’t book the stopover online.
Don’t forget to pay the taxes, fees, and stopover charge with a card that earns bonus points for booking directly with airlines, like:
- Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express – 3X American Express Membership Rewards points when booking directly with airlines
- The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN – 3X American Express Membership Rewards points for booking directly with airlines when you choose this as your 3X category (otherwise 2X points)
- Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard – 2.1% back
when you redeem for $100+ travel purchases
- Chase Sapphire Preferred – 2X Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel
- Citi Prestige – 3X Citi ThankYou points on airfare
- Citi ThankYou Premier – 3X Citi ThankYou points on travel
Once you’ve booked, your miles will be deducted with an email sent to you confirming the flight.
What If You Need More Singapore Airlines Miles?
I like Singapore Airlines miles because they’re easy to earn. They’re the only airline that’s a transfer partner of all 4 major flexible points programs:
American Express Membership Rewards points can take up to 5 business days to transfer to Singapore Airlines, but in my experience it usually takes ~1 day. You can earn American Express Membership Rewards points from the following cards:
Personal Cards Business Cards
Premier Rewards Gold Card From American Express The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN
American Express® Mercedes-Benz Platinum The Blue for Business® Credit Card from American Express
The Platinum Card® from American Express The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN
AMEX EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express
Business Green Rewards Card from American Express OPEN
AMEX EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express American Express® Gold Card American Express® Green Card Blue from American Express® Note: These are the ONLY AMEX cards that earn Membership Rewards points that can NOT be transferred to airline & hotel programs. But you can use these points on the Membership Rewards website for other redemptions. Includes personal AND small business versions of the card.
Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfers to Singapore Airlines usually take less than a day. These cards earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points:
|Personal Cards||Business Cards|
|Chase Sapphire Reserve||Chase Ink Plus|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred||Chase Ink Bold (No Longer Available to New Applicants)|
|Chase Freedom||Chase Ink Cash|
|Chase Freedom Unlimited|
|Chase Sapphire (No Longer Available to New Applicants)|
|Note: Points earned from the Chase Freedom, Sapphire, and Ink Cash cards can only be transferred to travel partners if you also have a Chase Sapphire Preferred, Ink Plus, or Ink Bold card.|
Citi says it can take up to 14 days for Citi ThankYou points to transfer to airline partners. However, transfers to Singapore Airlines usually take ~2 days.
Be careful with transferring Starwood points! It can take up to 4 weeks for transfers to airline partners (although typically it takes less than 2 weeks). But this can be an even better deal, because you’ll get 5,000 bonus Singapore Airlines miles for every 20,000 Starwood points you transfer.
Remember, you can earn Starwood points from the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express or the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express cards.
Other Great Ways to Use Singapore Airlines Miles
Here’s how to get deals on award flights in the US using Singapore Airlines miles.
And this is how to experience Singapore Airline’s amazing First Class suites to Europe with little more than 1 credit card sign-up bonus!
What About Using Miles From Another Airline to Fly Singapore Airlines?
Let’s take a look at what the cost would be to use miles from another airline on Singapore Airlines.
You can book the same Singapore Airlines flight we used earlier, 1-way from Los Angeles to Tokyo, using United Airlines miles.
You’d pay 75,000 United Airlines miles and ~$6 for the same flight. That’s 9,125 more miles you would pay for using United Airlines miles instead of Singapore Airlines miles. But less in taxes and fees.
However, the real issue is that United Airlines is much more stingy than Singapore Airlines with how many seats they have available at the saver level.
While Singapore Airlines often has several seats open in advance for both coach and Business Class (as well as a few in First Class!), United Airlines limits almost all of their open seats to coach, with it being very uncommon to see a Business Class seat available.
You can NOT book Singapore Airlines flights using United Airlines miles online. You must call United Airlines at 800-421-4655 to book.
United Airlines also doesn’t allow stopovers on 1-way award tickets.
You can book a stopover on a 1-way Singapore Airlines saver award ticket for only $100 and NO additional miles. Or add a 2nd stopover to a round-trip saver award for the same price.
From the US, you can visit terrific cities like Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Moscow, Seoul, and Tokyo on your way to Singapore.
To book the stopover, search for award seats online. Then call Singapore Airlines to book. Don’t forget to ask for the 15% online booking discount (because the award can’t be booked on the website).
Paying an extra $100 could be worth it to visit 2 cities for the price of one!
If you need more Singapore Airlines miles, transfer points from Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou, Starwood Preferred Guest, or American Express Membership Rewards.