Credit: Suitesmile
January 2024

I’ve recently written a beginner-friendly guide on the Miles Game and using the right cards for your spending.

In this article, I’ll share in greater detail how cardholders can redeem miles for maximum value, recommend routes for your first miles redemption and share how one can earn miles faster with a strategic partnership with a travel partner.


Basic information on Miles earned on UOB cards

Rewards earned on UOB cards are awarded in the form of UNI$, which can be converted to miles, by transferring to the following Frequent Flyer Programs (FFPs):

KrisFlyer by Singapore Airlines Group

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles


1 UNI$ is equivalent to 2 miles and the minimum transfer block is 5,000 UNI$ (10,000 miles). UNI$ expires 2 years after they are earned. Cardholders can extend the validity of their miles by transferring to an FFP.*

*Except for the KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card, where KrisFlyer miles are automatically credited to your KrisFlyer account in the following month.

Here’s a quick refresher on miles' validity in both FFPs:

KrisFlyer by Singapore Airlines Group: 3 years (fixed)

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles: 18 months (validity resets when there is account activity)


Sweet Spots: Best ways to redeem Miles

Now that you are earning miles faster by using the right cards, let’s look at the best ways to redeem them!


What makes these routes the “best”?

As everyone has unique travel patterns, there are many ways to determine which routes are the most “worth it”. Here’s how I decided on these sweet spots:

Find out how cheap (or expensive) the cash fares are for the same route

Compare the amount of miles required, against the total flight duration

Compare the amount of taxes/fees that come with an award booking

Compare against the number of miles that other Frequent Flyer Programs require for a similar route


Award bookings with KrisFlyer miles can be made at, while bookings with Asia Miles can be made at

Here are some great uses of miles that can be converted from UOB UNI$.


1) To/From Istanbul and South Africa

Here are the Saver award rates for flights to/from Istanbul and South Africa:

Economy Class: 29k KrisFlyer miles

Premium Economy: 43k KrisFlyer miles

Business Class: 56.5k KrisFlyer miles


Flight duration: 10-11 hours

Taxes/Fees: Typically under S$100*

*Depending on the conditions at time of booking

It’s hard to go wrong with a KrisFlyer miles redemption to this region, mainly because of the low mileage requirement for long haul flights of 10+ hours.

Istanbul, Turkey is geographically located right at the “front door” of Europe. This makes it pretty convenient for travellers who are travelling to the region to redeem just 56.5k miles for Business Class flights to Istanbul, before purchasing a separate Economy Class ticket (for as little as S$50 each way) to a preferred European city.

Singapore Airlines flies to other cities in Europe, but you would need to redeem 103,500 KrisFlyer miles for a Business Class flight to these cities, which is 47,000 KrisFlyer miles more, as compared to Istanbul!


Fly from Singapore to Istanbul before connecting to a preferred European city


2) To/From Hong Kong

Economy Class: 10k Asia Miles

Premium Economy: 20k Asia Miles

Business Class: 28k Asia Miles

Flight duration: 4 hours

Taxes/Fees: Typically around S$100

Travellers can fly directly between Singapore and Hong Kong on Cathay Pacific from just 10k Asia Miles + ~S$100 in taxes/fees.


Cathay Pacific Airbus A350 Business Class (Photo: Suitesmile)


3) To/From Eastern Australia and New Zealand

Economy Class: 27k - 40k Asia Miles, 30.5k KrisFlyer miles

Premium Economy: 51k KrisFlyer miles

Business Class: 63k - 89k Asia Miles, 68.5k KrisFlyer miles

First Class: 93.5k KrisFlyer miles


Flight duration: 8-10 hours

Taxes/Fees (KrisFlyer): Typically under S$100

Taxes/Fees (Asia Miles): Typically around S$200

For flights to Eastern Australian Cities (e.g. Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane) and New Zealand, travellers can redeem Asia Miles for flights on Qantas or KrisFlyer miles for flights on Singapore Airlines.


Qantas Airbus A330 Business Class seat (Photo: Qantas)


4) To/From Europe

Economy Class: 40k Asia Miles

Business Class: 89k Asia Miles


Flight duration: 13-15 hours

Taxes/Fees: Typically around S$100

Redeeming Asia Miles for Finnair flights to/from Europe gives you great value as the airline does not pass on fuel surcharges for award flights!

However, Finnair’s Business Class award availability can be scarce for flights to/from Singapore. To get around this, travellers can consider booking a flight to/from Bangkok instead, where availability is usually a lot better. Flights between Singapore and Bangkok on a low-cost airline usually cost less than S$100 each way.


5) To/From Perth

Economy Class: 15k Asia Miles, 21.5k KrisFlyer miles

Business Class: 33k Asia Miles, 40.5k KrisFlyer miles


Flight duration: 5 hours

Taxes/Fees (KrisFlyer): Typically under S$100

Taxes/Fees (Asia Miles): Typically around S$200

Travellers can redeem miles for direct flights between Singapore and Perth, Australia. Asia Miles can be redeemed for flights on Qantas, while KrisFlyer miles can be redeemed on Singapore Airlines flights.


Transfer bonus

Cardholders can get even more value from their miles by transferring them when there is a transfer bonus offer.

Asia Miles has a 10% transfer bonus for credit card miles/points that are transferred to the FFP between 25 May and 30 June 2023. For example, a UOB cardholder who transfers 50,000 UNI$ during this period will receive 110,000 miles, inclusive of 10,000 bonus miles.

Asia Miles typically offers transfer bonuses of 10% to 15% about twice a year. KrisFlyer does not usually offer transfer bonuses (aside from the one-time 15% bonus offered during the pandemic).


30% award discount through KrisFlyer Spontaneous Escapes

Travellers can get a 30% mileage discount on selected routes in Economy Class, Premium Economy and Business Class through KrisFlyer’s monthly Spontaneous Escapes deals.

The selected routes usually involve selected Singapore Airlines destinations, but occasionally, we see some of the “sweet spots” shared above included in the list; making the redemption even sweeter!


Suggestions for your first Miles redemption

The Miles Game is especially fun for travellers (like myself) who do not usually pay for flights in premium cabins (Business/First Class). With miles, cardholders can enjoy an elevated flying experience with wider seats, flat beds, better meals, free flow of champagne and even more free food and drinks in the airport lounge.

While there is nothing wrong in redeeming miles for Economy Class, using them for a premium seat can give travellers memorable flying experiences. This is especially when miles are redeemed for “high value” flights that are usually a lot more expensive than Economy Class.

Here are my suggestions for your first Miles redemption:


1) Singapore Airlines Premium Economy Class

Istanbul: 43k miles

I remember my first Premium Economy flight from Singapore to Istanbul on Singapore Airlines. I was not expecting much difference in comfort (vs Economy Class) but boy, was I wrong.

Comparing to Economy Class, all Premium Economy seats on Singapore Airlines has its own arm rests, better recline, more legroom, calf rest, foot rest and better food and beverage with Book the Cook options.

But Business Class costs just 13.5k more miles, you ask? That is true! I would recommend redeeming Business Class for this route any day. However, because of how popular the route is among miles chasers, it may not be available for redemption on your preferred travel date.

On those occasions, I recommend trying out Singapore Airlines Premium Economy Class.


Premium Economy Class on Singapore Airlines (Photo: Suitesmile)


2) Singapore Airlines Business Class

Bali: 21k KrisFlyer miles

Manila, Hanoi: 24k KrisFlyer miles

South Asia: 43k KrisFlyer miles

Istanbul: 56.5k KrisFlyer miles

Australia, New Zealand: 40.5k - 68.5k KrisFlyer miles

Having flown in premium cabins with most top airlines in the world, I have no doubt that Singapore Airlines’ Business Class experience is among the best in the world.

When redeeming KrisFlyer miles for the above routes, aim for flights on wide-body aircrafts like a Boeing 777 or 787.

Remember to make a Book the Cook meal selection before the flight. Main dish options depend on where the flight is departing from. For flights departing from Singapore, travellers can choose dishes like lobster thermidor, beef steak and special features like Boon Tong Kee Chicken Rice and Song Fa Bak Kut Teh.


Lobster Thermidor from the Book the Cook menu (Photo: Suitesmile)


3) Singapore Airlines Suites

Hong Kong: 45k KrisFlyer miles

New Delhi, Bombay: 58.5k KrisFlyer miles

Shanghai: 58.5k KrisFlyer miles

Singapore Airlines Suites is in most traveller’s bucket list, and for a good reason! The innovative cabin is literally a room in the sky, complete with a sliding door, 32-inch TV and a separate bed.

If you are travelling with a partner, selecting seats 1A and 2A or 1F and 2F gives you the opportunity to combine both beds into one large bed in a larger room! It may not make much sense to do so on a short 4-hour flight but it would make a nice photo opportunity in a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

These Suites can only be found in Singapore Airlines Airbus A380 aircrafts. Depending on Singapore Airlines flight schedule, the airline may not fly this aircraft type to/from the above destinations all year long. So, be sure to double-check the aircraft type before booking!

As there are only 6 Suites per aircraft, it may be difficult to find award availability on your preferred date. However, I usually see very good availability to/from New Delhi and Bombay, when an A380 is scheduled on those routes.

Flying in Singapore Airlines First Class/Suites also gives you access to the exclusive The Private Room lounge in Singapore Changi Airport.


Singapore Airlines Suite (Photo: Suitesmile)


4) Finnair Business Class

Europe: 89k Asia Miles

Finnair’s latest Airbus A350 Business Class seat is unique as it does not recline! This seat acts as a couch with extra-wide shoulder room. To go to sleep, travellers can simply slide themselves down to a flat bed.


Finnair’s latest Airbus A350 Business Class seat (Photo: Suitesmile)


5) Cathay Pacific Business Class

Hong Kong: 28k Asia Miles

Europe: 84k - 110k Asia Miles

While Cathay Pacific Business Class seats do not look as interesting as those mentioned above, the overall Business Class experience, when it comes to food and service is very good.

When flying from or transiting through Hong Kong, travellers can enjoy Cathay Pacific’s The Pier Business Lounge at the airport, which I rank very highly when it comes to F&B and overall airport lounge experience.


The Pier Business Lounge in Hong Kong International Airport (Photo: Suitesmile)


2-Player Mode: Earn miles faster by teaming up with your partner

What is 2-Player Mode?

“Two-Player Mode”, “P2 Mode” and “Player 2 Mode” are terms used in the travel-hacking world when you and a travel partner team up to maximize miles-earning.

This can be achieved through careful planning of credit card usage between two cardholders, especially on specialized cards with high earn rates (up to 6 miles per dollar) that usually come with monthly caps.

By maximizing each other’s monthly limits on these high-earning cards, cardholders can enjoy greater earn rates on shared expenses to collectively “double” the monthly limits.

Here are some specialized UOB cards with high earn rates:


1) KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card

The KrisFlyer UOB Credit Card offers an uncapped earn rate of 3 miles per dollar spend on Singapore Airlines, Scoot, KrisShop and Kris+ purchases.

The KrisFlyer miles you earn will be credited automatically into your KrisFlyer membership

account every month.

Cardholders can also receive the same uncapped earn rate on selected everyday spend categories like dining, food delivery, online shopping, online travel and transport spend, if they spend at least S$800 in a Card Membership Year on Singapore Airlines, Scoot and KrisShop.

What's more, fast-track to KrisFlyer Elite Silver status when you charge a minimum of S$5,000 on Singapore Airlines, Scoot, and KrisShop card transactions within your first-year membership period for more benefits when you fly with Singapore Airlines and Scoot.

Plus, other exciting travel benefits such as S$15 off Grab rides to or from Singapore Changi Airport, 5,000 Welcome miles with first eligible spend of S$5, 10,000 miles with payment of annual renewal fee and more!

Sign-up gift: Apply now and get up to 31,000 miles and first year annual fee waiver.


2) UOB PRVI Miles Card

The UOB PRVI Miles Card comes in 3 variants: Visa, Mastercard and American Express.

This card offers uncapped earn rates of 1.4 miles per dollar on local (SGD) spending and 2.4 miles per dollar on foreign currency spending; among the highest in Singapore!

On top of that, cardholders can also enjoy a great earn rate of 6 miles per dollar on major hotel and airline bookings (e.g. Turkish Airlines, Finnair, Thai Airways and more) booked via dedicated Agoda or Expedia link on the PRVI Miles Card website.

Sign-up gift: Apply now and get up to 50,000 miles 


Concluding thoughts

The Miles Game is not just about earning miles fast. By redeeming miles for high-value routes, those hard-earned miles can take you further, while offering memorable flying experiences to or from your dream destinations.

About the Author: Fai is the Founder of Suitesmile, a Singapore-based travel hacking blog where travellers can learn tips and tricks to travel smarter, as well as the best ways to earn and redeem credit card miles and points.



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