Asia Miles is the points program for the oneworld member airline Cathay Pacific. It’s an extremely versatile scheme that’s equally good for booking short Qantas flights and big round-the-world trips involving multiple partner airlines.

While it’s not possible to directly earn Asia Miles from credit cards in Australia, there are a few flexible points programs that do have partnerships. In this article, we will guide you through all the essential questions you should consider to ensure you maximise the points earning potential of your credit card.

What is the best Cathay Pacific Asia Miles credit card sign-up bonus deal?

CardBonus Flexible
Points
Transfer
Ratio
Asia Miles (equivalent)Annual FeeExpiryCard Guide
American Express Platinum Card
American Express Platinum ↓
Up to 200,000 Membership
Rewards Points
2:1Up to 100,000 Asia Miles$1,450 p.a.27 January 2021Read Here
American Express Explorer
American Express Explorer ↓
Up to 150,000
Membership Rewards Points
2:1Up to 75,000 Asia Miles$39527 January 2021Read Here
American Express Platinum Business Card
American Express Platinum
Business ↓
150,000 Membership Rewards
Points
2:175,000 Asia Miles $1750 p.a.13 January
2021
Read Here
Westpac Altitude Black
Westpac Altitude Black ↓
150,000 Altitude Points3:150,000 Asia Miles$250 p.a.11 November
2020
Read Here
ANZ Rewards Black
ANZ Rewards Black ↓
130,000 ANZ
Rewards Points
3:143,000 Asia Miles$375 p.a.No current
offer end date
Read Here
NAB Rewards Signature
NAB Rewards Signature ↓
120,000 NAB
Rewards Points
3:140,000 Asia Miles$295 p.a.No current
offer end date
Read Here

What is the best credit card for Asia Miles?

Find below a roundup of some flexible points earning cards that allow transfer to Asia Miles with noteworthy bonus offers to know about this month.

What is the easiest way to earn Asia Miles?

In Australia, the easiest way to earn Asia Miles is by first earning points in other participating rewards programs, then transfer those points onwards to Asia Miles.

The main benefit of this arrangement is that you have flexibility in where your rewards points go. Just send them to your Asia Miles account when it suits you, rather than wait for a monthly transfer. Sometimes, there are bonuses for transferring too.

These programs can transfer to Asia Miles:

What do I look for in an Asia Miles-earning credit card?

  • Transfer rates: One of the most important things to keep in mind that the aforementioned flexible reward programs have different transfer ratios to Asia Miles. This means you could get different rewards from two cards that offer the same sign-up bonus and earn rates.

    For example, 120,000 Membership Rewards points would convert to 60,000 Asia Miles, while 120,000 Altitude Points would only convert to 40,000 Asia Miles.
  • Earn rates: Another important consideration – how many Asia Miles can you earn on an ongoing basis? Each card has its own ‘effective earn rate’ which can be worked out from the points you earn from the card, divided by its transfer rate to Asia Miles.

    For example, a card that earns 2 reward points per dollar spent and has a 3:1 transfer rate to Asia Miles will effectively earn you 0.66 Asia Miles per dollar spent.

    As of September 2020, one of the highest effective earn rates is 1.125 Asia Miles per $1 spent uncapped, through the American Express Platinum Charge Card.

    Most non-Amex cards will effectively earn 0.33 to 1 Asia Mile per dollar, depending on the card type. Some cards will have caps on the number of points earned per month, which is something to keep in mind if you have got a few large purchases coming up.
  • Bonus points offer: Most cards will have big bonus points offers to lure new customers in. It is not uncommon to see signup bonuses of 100,000 rewards points or more (which may be worth between 33,000 to 50,000 Asia Miles)!

    Just be mindful not to let the offers distract you from doing your homework. Check annual fees and spending criteria before applying.
  • Bonus travel inclusions: Higher-end credit cards will throw in extras to enhance your travel experience – one of the best being Priority Pass membership for lounge access. Consider if these will be of any use to you.
  • Included insurances: Platinum-grade rewards credit cards tend to include some form of complimentary insurances. Most common is travel insurance, which is activated when you purchase flights or accommodation with the card.

    Be sure to read the Product Disclosure Statements (PDS) very carefully, as these free insurances often have lots of clauses that can catch you out.

    Other cards might go above-and-beyond and include price-drop protection, extra extended warranties on products, or even smartphone screen damage cover.

What do I need to be mindful of with Asia Miles-earning credit cards?

Like any other credit card, you should take the following financial factors into account when deciding which rewards card is best for you.

American Express Platinum Edge offer - Point Hacks - Evin Tan Khiew
Example of fees, interest rates and conditions you should check before applying.
  • Annual fee: The annual fee is a yearly charge that most credit cards have. Charged by the issuing bank, it covers the benefits you get from the cards.

    The bigger the inclusions with your rewards credit card, the higher the annual fee. For example, both the $1,450-a-year American Express Platinum Charge card and the $195-a-year Platinum Edge card have the ability to earn Asia Miles at comparable rates but are quite different in other offerings. You’ll need to assess which one best suits your needs.

    Unless there is a special ‘no annual fee’ promotion, expect most rewards-earning credit cards to have an annual fee to cover some of the costs of your benefits.
  • Interest rate: All rewards cards have high-interest rates – they simply are not designed for carrying a balance over month-to-month. If you have issues with credit card debt, a rewards card may not be the best option right now, as the fees and interest incurred will outweigh any Asia Miles earned.
  • Interest-free days: Most credit cards will allow between 44-55 days interest-free for your purchases, which is standard. This gives you a little breathing space to pay off your purchases next month.
  • Income requirements: Platinum-level rewards credit cards will usually require a higher income level to apply for it. You will usually have to back up your reported income with recent electronic payslips or bank statements.

    If you live with a partner, your combined household income might be taken into account as well. Check the terms and conditions carefully before applying.

What do I need to know before I apply for an Asia Miles credit card?

Here is a quick checklist of what you should know before applying for a rewards credit card:

  • Am I eligible for the bonus points? Most cards will exclude you from bonus points if you have held their credit cards in the last 12-18 months. This will be in the terms and conditions.
  • Can I easily fulfil the criteria for bonus points? Most bonus point offers will require you to spend more than a certain amount (often $1000+) per month, for a few months.

    If this is difficult for you to achieve with normal household spend or paying some bills early up-front, then this might not be the right credit card for you. 
  • Is my credit score healthy? The chances of having your application accepted are much better if you have a good credit history.

How can I earn Asia Miles after I get my credit card?

Once you get your rewards credit card, be sure to meet the minimum spend requirements to unlock your sign-up bonus. Once that is safely locked away, there are a few strategies to ensure you keep on earning lots of rewards points that you can later transfer to Asia Miles.

  • Put your everyday purchases on the card: from hotel packages to bills, streaming TV to food delivery, you can maximise your points earned by putting most of your normal household expenses on the credit card and paying it off in full every month.
  • Take advantage of transfer bonuses: Flexible rewards programs often run transfer bonuses that might offer 15-40% more points when transferring to certain programs. If Asia Miles is part of the promo, then that could be a good time to transfer.

Frequently asked questions

The following answers are general advice and do not take into account your personal circumstances. Be sure to consider all aspects of a credit card before applying.

What credit card is best for Asia Miles?

The best frequent flyer card depends on everyone’s individual circumstances. This guide will help you understand all aspects of a rewards-branded credit card so you can make the best choice for yourself.

How do I get an Asia Miles card?

In Australia, there are no direct Asia Miles earning cards. However, this guide will show you other cards you can apply for that can transfer reward points to Asia Miles.

Which credit card gets you more miles?

In general, higher-tier credit cards with higher annual fees will come with heftier sign-up bonuses and a more solid points earning rate.

What can I use Asia Miles for?

Asia Miles is a very useful points program for travel with Cathay Pacific, Qantas and other oneworld partner airlines. Read more in our starter guide to the Asia Mile program.

What is the best credit card for Asia Miles? was last modified: November 10th, 2020 by Evin Tan Khiew