Don’t Waste Miles: Transfer Flexible Points (Including Chase Ultimate Rewards) to Singapore Airlines and Book United Flights for Less

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Don’t Waste Miles:  Transfer Flexible Points (Including Chase Ultimate Rewards) to Singapore Airlines and Book United Flights for Less

DevonDon’t Waste Miles:  Transfer Flexible Points (Including Chase Ultimate Rewards) to Singapore Airlines and Book United Flights for LessMillion Mile Secrets Team

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We’re big fans of United Airlines miles at MMS because you can redeem them for award flights pretty much anywhere.  But what we love even more is the ability to book the same award flights for fewer miles on certain routes using Star Alliance partner Singapore Airlines miles instead!

You can book many of the same award flights that United Airlines offers with Singapore Airlines miles for a LOT less – including sweet spot routes like the mainland US to Hawaii or Europe!

And unlike United Airlines, Singapore Airlines is a direct transfer partner of the 5 major transferable point programs:   Chase Ultimate Rewards, AMEX Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou, Capital One, and Marriott Rewards.  So you can transfer points earned from the best travel credit cards like the Ink Business Preferred Credit Card to Singapore Airlines and spend less!

You’re Overpaying Miles on United Airlines on Certain Routes, Like the Mainland US to Hawaii! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to Singapore Airlines for Great Savings on the Same Flights!

I’ll show you when it makes sense to book United Airlines award flights using Singapore Airlines miles instead of United Airlines miles.

How to Transfer Flexible Points to Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines is a direct transfer partner of the 5 major transferable point programs:   Chase Ultimate Rewards, AMEX Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou, Capital One, and Marriott Rewards.

You can also find our recommendations on earning points within each program right here:

As with all direct transfer partners, moving flexible points to Singapore Airlines is NOT reversible.  Additionally, Singapore Airlines miles expire 36 months from the date you earn or transfer them, so make you’re able to use any points transferred within that time frame.  It shouldn’t be too hard with all the great sweet spots below 🙂

If you’re new to miles and points, we recommend the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card for beginners.  It’s the most versatile and useful card for folks just starting out in our hobby.

Sweet Spot Redemptions by Booking With Singapore Airlines Instead of United Airlines Miles

Singapore Airlines has a zone-based award chart, meaning the miles required for an award flight depend on the regions you’re flying between (or within).  United Airlines uses a similar method to pricing their awards.

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
You Can Use Singapore Airlines Miles Calculator to See How Much Specific Redemptions Cost

The good news is that in many cases, it’s cheaper to book an award flight from the mainland US to Hawaii, South America, or Europe using Singapore Airlines miles than it is with United Airlines miles.

Within North America in Business Class

You can book domestic flights within the US on United Airlines using Singapore Airlines miles.  However, you can only book these domestic award flights over the phone.

Round-trip domestic flights will only cost you 40,000 Singapore Airlines miles in Business Class, instead of 50,000 United Airlines miles for the exact same flights.

You can follow the steps below for a relatively painless booking process:

  1.   Find available Saver award seats on the United Airlines website (flights must be operated by United Airlines)
  2.   Call Singapore Airlines at 312-843-5333 
  3.   Press 1 for Krisflyer Members
  4.   Enter your 10-digit Singapore Airlines frequent flyer number, followed by #
  5.   Enter 6-digit account PIN followed by #
  6.   Press 2 for award booking with partner airlines
  7.   The representative will ask for origin, destination, date of travel, number of passengers, and one-way or round-trip
  8.   The representative will check availability and help you book if the flight is available

You may be put on hold after step 6.  My wait time was ~4 minutes.  The representative was very nice and was willing to find another booking when my first date wasn’t available.  She even suggested routes that she could search like Los Angeles to Denver or Chicago.

While it’s a little inconvenient that you can’t book these awards online, it’s still nice you can book them over the phone and at a great price!

Note:   As with most phone bookings, if the representative tacks on a booking fee, ask them nicely to remove it because this redemption is not available to book online.

North America to Southern South America in Business Class

Flights from mainland North America to Southern South America (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay) is another great way to save when you book using Singapore Airlines miles.

When you book one-way from Miami to Chile, you’ll only pay 50,000 Singapore Airlines miles for Business Class.  The same itinerary using United Airlines miles will set you back 60,000 miles!

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
A United Airlines Business Class Award Flight Between Miami and Santiago Costs Less Using Singapore Airlines Miles

Round trip surcharges are very comparable, at ~$60 with Singapore Airlines and ~$50 with United Airlines.

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
The Same Flight Costs More When You Book With United Airlines

From the US to Europe in Coach (Plus Save Even More Flying New York to Germany and Houston to the UK)

For United Airlines coach flights from the US to Europe, you’ll only pay 55,000 Singapore Airlines miles compared to 60,000 United Airlines miles.

But if you’re flying certain routes, you can save even more by redeeming Singapore Airlines miles on Singapore Airlines’ own flights between New York (JFK) and Frankfurt, or Houston and Manchester, UK.

For example, booking this Singapore Airlines flight between New York and Frankfurt one-way costs 22,500 Singapore Airlines miles in coach.  But the same flight will set you back 30,000 United Airlines miles!

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
Fly Between New York and Frankfurt on Singapore Airlines to Save Even More

Here’s the booking on the same flight using United Airlines miles:

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
The Same Flight Costs More United Airlines Miles

Mainland US to Hawaii

It wouldn’t be a post about Singapore Airlines without mentioning the steal of a deal you can get by booking United Airlines award flights to Hawaii.  This is one of our favorite ways to save with Singapore Airlines miles.

You’ll only pay 17,500 Singapore Airlines miles in coach between the mainland and Hawaii.  But the same itinerary from United Airlines will set you back 22,500 miles!

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
Fly Between Los Angeles and Honolulu on United Airlines and Save 10,000 Miles Round-Trip Booking With Singapore Airlines Miles

This is one of the best ways to use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points for a trip to Hawaii, especially now that Korean Air is no longer a transfer partner of Chase Ultimate Rewards.  Team members Keith and Jasmin have each used this technique to save 10,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per person round-trip on flights to Hawaii!

You're Overpaying Miles on United Airlines! Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards to This Partner for Great Savings on the Same Flights!
The Identical Flight Costs More Using United Airlines Miles

This can translate to significant savings when you’re traveling as a family or group!

Bottom Line

You can often save by booking United Airlines award flights with Singapore Airlines miles instead of United Airlines miles.

And Singapore Airlines is a direct transfer partner of the 5 major transferable point programs, including our favorite Chase Ultimate Rewards points.  So Singapore Airlines miles are easier to earn than United Airlines miles.

Our favorite sweet spots include United Airlines flights between the mainland US and Hawaii, Europe, and Southern South America where you can save a lot of miles depending on the class of service you book.

Do you have any other favorite ways to save by booking United Airlines flights with Singapore Airlines miles?

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Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each account anniversary year
  • Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases–with no limit to the amount you can earn
  • Points are worth 25% more when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • Redeem points for travel, cash back, gift cards and more – your points don't expire as long as your account is open
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Employee cards at no additional cost
  • $95 Annual Fee

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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Great idea. If I pay with my Chase United Explorer card, will I get the free baggage benefits?

Traveling from US to Hawaii (one-way) using Singapore Airlines is 17,500 points compared to using British Airways Avios at only 12,500 points. I thought this post was gonna show me a better way! Looks like a great way to travel elsewhere though!