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I’ve previously sung the praises of Avianca Lifemiles and all the amazing things you can do with them, especially as an alternative to United miles for a subset of domestic flights (SEE: 3 reasons I am SUPER excited for the new Lifemiles shorthaul awards). They are an easy currency to accrue these days, as you can transfer American Express Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou Points, and CapitalOne miles all to this currency. They are a great option for long-haul premium cabins, as they, like United miles, do not pass along ridiculous fuel surcharges on award tickets.

But dealing with Lifemiles can be a huge headache. This current promotion is just salt in a recent wound.

Avianca Double Miles promotion

Avianca is currently offering a double miles promotion for international flights booked between February 28 and March 4, and flown between February 28 and May 31. This is a promotion on paid airfare, so you would earn twice the base miles earned for any ticket booked with them. Your ticket must be booked through any Avianca booking channel (not through an OTA) and must be operated by Avianca, TACA, Avianca Ecuador, or Lasca. If you’re already planning to travel to Central or South America, this is not  a bad deal. Avianca often offers good fares to these destinations from some U.S. airports.

You must use the promo code LOVEMILES to take advantage of this offer.

But I don’t care. I’m still fighting them for miles I spent on a short-haul award that was canceled but they are refusing to refund. They are one of the most customer-unfriendly companies I have dealt with. A full post on the saga is forthcoming, if I ever get a final resolution. Just know I’ve wasted hours of my life trying to get my Lifemiles back.

To show you just how shady they can be, the terms of their current promotion contains a line that makes me shake my head:

“Thinking about your safety and the correct use of the services of our VIP Lounges, we reserve the right of admission to them, even if you have a booking in Business Class.”

Huh? I would think if you have a business class ticket, you can use their business class lounge. But apparently they can deny you for “safety” reasons??? If all they mean by this is that they’ll throw out the inebriated folks, then that’s fine. But this is definitely an odd thing to put in the terms.

So beware. Lifemiles can be great. I’ve booked a few awards with them, and they have been an excellent deal. Just know who/what you are dealing with.

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