10% bonus miles on Alaska cards with qualifying Bank of America account

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Bank of America notified Alaska Airlines Visa Signature and Alaska Airlines Business Visa customers that they can now receive a 10% bonus on all miles earned on the card if they have a qualifying Bank of America account. It looks like you’ll need a consumer checking or savings account with Bank of America N.A. or an investment account with Merrill that maintains an average daily balance greater than $0 or a Bank of America checking or savings account that has had a deposit or withdrawal within 90 days to get the 10% bonus on the Alaska consumer card or meet a similar requirement but with a business account for the bonus on the business card.

a screenshot of a credit card

The Deal

  • Bank of America is now offering a 10% rewards bonus on all miles earned from card purchases on the Alaska Airlines cards if you have an eligible Bank of America account

Key Terms

From a consumer card (business card terms are similar but require your company to have an eligible business account instead of consumer account):

  • Relationship Bonus Miles: You will earn bonus Miles equal to 10% of the Miles you earn on each $1 spent in Net Purchases when you have an active Qualifying Account. An active Qualifying Account is an open consumer (non-business) checking or savings account with Bank of America N.A. or an investment account with Merrill that maintains an average daily balance greater than $0 or a Bank of America checking or savings account that has had a deposit or withdrawal within 90 days. Balances are reviewed at the end of every month to determine if qualifications were met. For cardholders with a Qualifying Account all Net Purchases made with your Card on or after the fifth business day of the current month through the fifth business day of the following month will earn the Relationship Bonus Miles. Upon new account opening of a Qualifying Account, it may take up to 30 days to begin earning the Relationship Bonus Miles.

Quick Thoughts

It’s always nice to get a little bump in miles for low effort, and the bar here is quite low in order to get 10% more miles. It certainly wouldn’t hurt to have a qualifying Bank of America account if you have one of these cards.

This deal will be most useful for those who use the card to make Alaska Airlines purchases since those purchases ordinarily earn 3 miles per dollar spent. With this bonus, you’ll end up with 3.3 miles per dollar spent. That’s a decent return for those who highly value Alaska miles, though I’d remind Alaska enthusiasts that the new award chart is ripe for more stealth devaluations, so I’d be lukewarm on spending on this card rather than a card that bonuses travel spend at 3x transferable points per dollar or better (and particularly one with good travel protections).

Unfortunately, I do not think the 10% bonus will apply to the welcome bonus on either Alaska card. The terms of the relationship bonus state:

You will earn bonus Miles equal to 10% of the Miles you earn on each $1 spent in Net Purchases when you have an active Qualifying Account

I take that to mean that you’ll earn the bonus only on miles earned directly from purchases as opposed to welcome bonuses.

Also unfortunate is that these cards are still excluded from the relationship bonus given to those with Bank of America Platinum Honors status. That status is achieved by having $100,000 in cash and/or investments (including IRAs) with Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, or Merrill Edge (the no-fee self-directed brokerage arm) and it provides a 75% bonus on rewards earned on the non-cobranded Bank of America cards. For instance, the Cash Unlimited card and the Premium Rewards card both offer a base earning rate of 1.5% on all purchases that becomes 2.625% back on unbonused spend with Platinum Honors. Unfortunately, the Alaska cards still aren’t eligible for that bonus.

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