Many top airlines have signed up with a Singaporean-Chinese start-up that lets frequent travellers and shoppers earn air miles through everyday spending.
Mileslife arrived in Hong Kong in August, after launching in Singapore last year and mainland China before that. The company’s mobile app connects restaurants to diners, who spend and collect airline points for eating out.
To start, the company added a health aspect, giving users miles for walking a minimum of 5,000 steps a day. In future, it aims to give points for going to the gym or yoga classes, as it works to increase the number of transactions made through the app.
The app has unlocked new methods of earning miles at restaurants that were previously not available or possible, said airline loyalty expert Mark Ross-Smith, who ran Malaysia Airlines’ frequent flier business until earlier this year.
In Hong Kong, users can pay for meals on the app at 600 restaurants so far. In Singapore, that stands at 800 and is 1,800 in mainland China.
More than a dozen leading airlines have partnered with Mileslife so far. Several more airlines from North America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific are expected to join by the first half of 2019.
The number of customers that flew with all the airlines teamed up with the app so far reached 812 million over 2017 – highlighting the potential pool of untapped customers around the world. The airlines include British Airways, Singapore Airlines, Emirates and Qatar Airways.
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