By now you may have seen the two Bank of America Alaska Airlines Signature Visa signup offers that have been widely reported:
- 40,000 MileagePlan miles: 25,000 on account approval and 15,000 after spending $10,000 within 6 months of account membership;
- 40,000 MileagePlan miles (personal and business): 25,000 on account approval and 15,000 miles after spending $2,000 in each of the first 12 months of account membership.
Obviously for my regular readers neither $10,000 in 6 months nor $24,000 in 12 months is a huge obstacle.
But that's not really the question.
The question is whether earning 2.5 or 1.625 MileagePlan miles per dollar (with the first and second offers, respectively) is the best use of that $10,000 or $24,000 in spend. There's no question that for many people it will be: I consider Alaska Airlines miles among the most valuable thanks to the ability to redeem them on both American Airlines and Delta Airlines, as well as Alaska itself. They also have a lot of premium international partner airlines which can give you enormous value per mile.
On the other hand, if you're earning 5% cash back at drug stores, you might be hard-pressed to decide between the cash and the speculative value of the airline miles.
That's why I'm happy to remind my readers that the 30,000 mile offer with no minimum spending requirement is still available.
Personally, I'll be holding out for another 50,000 mile signup bonus (plus I'm waiting for my credit report to cool off after my January application cycle). But if you're interested in MileagePlan miles and don't want to use your manufactured spending bandwidth on them, 30,000 miles is a very strong offer for this card.