15 Best Ways to Earn Lots of Emirates Skywards Miles & Points [2017]

Emirates First Class A380 - First Class Lounge

Emirates’ global network is the largest airline in the Middle East with a hub at Dubai International Airport.

The first Emirates flight took to the sky in October 1985 with only two aircraft in its operations. Fast forward to 2016 and Emirates is the operator of the world’s biggest fleet of Boeing 777s and Airbus A380s.

Emirates branded cards are not available in the U.S. Fortunately you can earn points by using many other credit cards and transfer them to your Skywards account.

This post will tell you about which credit cards to use to earn more miles and how you can benefit from incorporating them into your miles-earning strategies. You will also learn about the many Emirates partners and how you can maximize the miles you earn with them.

When you’re finished reading, you will be fully prepared to start adding tons of Emirates Skywards Miles to your account. Let’s get started!

Earn Miles with Emirates Skywards Loyalty Program

1. Sign Up with Skywards to Start Earning Miles

Skywards is the frequent flyer program run by Emirates. Enroll in Emirates Skywards for free and begin earning miles right away. Then redeem miles with the airline’s wide partner selection to enjoy a variety of benefits and services. We go much more in-depth about the program in our Emirates Skywards loyalty review.

Once you’re signed up, you can log into your Skywards account to check your Miles and recent transactions and find links to help you manage your account.

Emirates Skywards account
Log into your account using your email address or Emirates Skywards membership number and password. Then check your Miles balance, book an award or click on a resource link.

2. Book Flights on Emirates

Emirates Skywards is one of the few airline loyalty programs to provide both reward miles (Skywards Miles) and status miles (Tier Miles) for all fares.

Skywards Miles are based on the route, fare type, class, and tier (see website).

Route
Type of Fare* Special
  Saver
  Flex
  Flex Plus
Class Economy
  Business
  First
Tier Blue: N/A
  Silver: 25% bonus
  Gold: 50% bonus
  Platinum: 75% bonus

*There are some restrictions on every fare except Flex Plus, which is unrestricted and completely flexible.

Earn up to 175% bonus miles in First Class and Business Class depending on the fare type. Miles are credited after you’ve reached your destination.

3. Earn More with Skyward Status Tiers

As we mentioned, the Skyward Tiers are Blue, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. There are two ways to move to the next level: by earning the required number of Emirates Tier Miles or completing the required number of Emirates flights.

Each time you reach a higher tier, you will receive more benefits such as dedicated check-in, priority boarding, and lounge access. You can remain at your Tier for 14 months. That means you get an extra two months even if you don’t meet the renewal qualifications during the annual review.

Emirates Skywards membership tiers
Reach higher Tier Levels by earning qualifying Tier Miles or taking the required number of Emirates flights.

Earning Miles with Credit Cards

4. American Express Credit Cards

Converting American Express Membership Rewards points to Skywards Miles is another way to earn the highest Skywards rewards.

Make purchases with your American Express Credit Cards to build up your Membership Rewards points. Then transfer them to receive 1,000 Skywards Miles in increments of 1,000 (but watch out for sporadic bonuses that Amex run when transferring points to Emirates!)

When typing in the number of reward points you want to convert on your American Express Membership Rewards account page, it will prompt you to sign in to make the transfer.

Recommended Amex Personal Cards

CREDIT CARDCARD INFO
The Platinum Card® from American Express

More Info?
> Don't Miss These 18 Valuable Card Benefits


  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • Up to $200 Uber Savings Annually.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $550
  • Our Review
Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express
  • Earn 25,000 points.
  • 3x points for flights booked directly with airlines.
  • 2X points at US restaurants, US gas stations, and at US supermarkets. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $0 for the first year, then $195
  • Our Review
The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express
  • Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Our Review

Recommended Amex Personal Cards

CREDIT CARDCARD INFO
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express OPEN

Stacked with Benefits
> 41 Benefits You Need To Know About This Card
  • Earn up to 75,000 Membership Rewards® points.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $450
  • Our Review
The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN

More Info?
> Don't Miss These 11 Valuable Card Benefits
  • Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points
  • Get 3x points - Choose 1 out of 5 categories. Terms Apply.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $175
  • Our Review
The Blue Business℠ Plus Credit Card from American Express
  • Earn 2X points on everyday business purchases such as office supplies or client dinners. Terms Apply.
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Our Review

5. Starwood Preferred Guest-Branded Credit Cards

Emirates partners with the Starwood Preferred Guest loyalty program, which allows you to convert points to Skywards Miles at a 1:1 ratio. You’ll also get 5,000 bonus miles for converting 20,000 SPG points in one transaction!

The minimum number of points you can transfer depends on your tier in the SPG program: Preferred Guest (2,500 miles), Gold Preferred (1,500 miles), Platinum (no minimum). It can take up to a week for the points to transfer so start the process as soon as possible if you are planning a trip.

Earn SPG reward points faster by making purchases with the two credit cards in the following table:

CREDIT CARDCARD INFO
Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

Not Sure?
> Don't Miss These 7 Valuable Card Benefits
> Here's 45 Best Ways To Use SPG Points
  • Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints®
  • Up to 5x Starpoints® on eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Full Review
Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express
  • Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints®
  • Up to 5x Starpoints® on eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Full Review

Earn Miles with Emirates Travel Partners 

6. SPG Your World Rewards

Transferring Starpoints isn’t the only way the Starwood Preferred Guests loyalty program helps you boost your Emirates Miles balance. Emirates Skywards and SPG have a partnership called Your World Rewards designed to help you earn more miles and benefits.

When you stay at a Starwood Preferred Guest property, you’ll earn 1 Skywards frequent flyer program mile for every $1 spent along with your Starpoints! If you are a Skywards Gold or Platinum Member you’ll also get benefits like complimentary Wi-Fi, priority check-in, and late check-out.

It also works in reverse. SPG Gold and Platinum members will earn 1 Starpoint for every $1 you spend on eligible Emirates flights in addition to Skywards Miles. SPG Platinum members will also enjoy priority check-in and priority boarding.

Check out the table below to see more of the benefits of Your World Rewards.

emirates-skywards-your-world-rewards
Sign up for Your World Rewards and earn both Starpoints and Skywards Miles for Emirates flights and SPG hotel stays. Choose from more than 150 destinations with Emirates and 1,200 Starwood Hotels and Resorts’ nine property brands.

7. Emirates Airline Partners

Click on an airline partner link for more information about earning points as a Skywards member.

Airline Earn Airline Earn Airline Earn
Air Mauritius Up to 2 mi./1 mi. flown JetBlue Up to 1 mi./1 mi. flown S7 Airlines Up to 1.25 mi./1 mi. flown
Alaska Airlines Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown Jetstar Up to 1.25 mi./1 mi. flown South African Airways Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown
GOL Linhas Aéreas Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown Korean Air Up to 2 mi./1 mi. flown TAP Portugal Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown
Japan Airlines Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown Malaysia Airlines Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown Virgin America Up to 2 mi./1 mi. flown
Jet Airways Up to 1.25 mi./1 mi. flown Qantas Up to 1.5 mi./1 mi. flown easyJET* Redeem only

*While you can’t earn miles with easyJET, you can redeem them starting at 7,500 miles.

8. Book Car Rentals

Emirates Skywards partners with six car rental agencies, each of which offers up to 2,000 miles per rental for Skywards members. Click on a link below to learn the terms and conditions of the partner offers.

Car Rental Agency Earned Miles/Rental Car Rental Agency Earned Miles
Avis Up to 500 miles Europcar Up to 1,000 miles
Budget Up to 500 miles Hertz Up to 1,000 miles
Dollar Rent-A-Car Up to 1,000 miles Sixt Up to 2,000 miles

9. Emirates Hotel Partners

In addition to transferring reward points from the SPG loyalty program, you can also make transfers from the following hotel loyalty programs:

Hotel Transfer Ratio
AccorHotels 4,000:2,000
Hyatt 1:1; 5,000 bonus miles if transfer 50,000 miles in one transaction
IHG 10,000:2,000
Jumeirah 2:1
Marriott Rewards* 10,000:1,500
Radisson Blu 10:1

*For other Marriott Rewards transfer ratios see the Skywards Marriott page.

Just a reminder, you can earn hotel points by using hotel credit cards as we explained in the Earning Miles with Credit Cards section. Here are some of the cards that allow you to earn points with Marriott, Hyatt, and IHG hotels:

CREDIT CARDCARD INFO
Chase Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card
  • 5 Points Per $1 Spent at Marriott Rewards and SPG hotels.
  • Annual Fee: $85
  • Our Review
Chase IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card
  • Earn 5x points at IHG hotels and 2x points on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants.
  • Annual Fee: $0 first year, then $49
  • Our Review
Chase Hyatt Credit Card
  • 3x points at Hyatt properties and 2x points at restaurants, airfare purchased directly from the airline and car rental agencies
  • Annual Fee: $75
  • Our Review

Special Offers

10. Skyward Promotional Offers

While most of the Emirates Skyward shopping partners are only available internationally, you can find some great ways to earn extra reward points on the offers page instead. You’ll find featured offers plus deals with airlines, car rental agencies, hotels, and more.

Emirates-Skywards offers
Check the Skywards Offers page for new promotional offers.

11. Family Bonus Program

With the Emirates Family Bonus program, you receive 20% of the base miles earned by the people you nominate in your family. As the “Family Bonus principal” you don’t have to accompany your family members when they fly to earn the points.

Instead, you provide your membership number, either when booking the flight or when they check in.

Emirates also offers the Skysurfers program, which allows children age 2-16 to get extra benefits while earning miles. They can spend their Skyward Miles on reward flights or choose books, toys, and more. Skysurfers can also earn Silver and Gold status!

Emirates Skysurfers
With the Skysurfers program, kids 2-16 can earn miles too!

12. Book an Emirates Holidays Package

Purchase an Emirates Holidays package and earn 20% bonus miles. That’s on top of the miles you earn for flying Emirates. You must book a minimum 3-night package to qualify. A 5% discount applies to the cost of the trip if you book early enough!

Emirates Skywards Holidays
Earn miles with a Emirates Holidays package!

13. Business Rewards

Enroll your small business in Emirates Business Rewards and earn Business Rewards points when your employees travel. You may add up to 80 employees to your business account.

If they are Skywards frequent flyer program members, they will still earn miles on their flights as long as they link their frequent flyer number to the program.

At the same time, your organization will earn 1 Business Rewards Point per $1 whenever employees fly Emirates no matter which class! Just give your Business Rewards membership number when booking a trip.

Emirates Skywards Business Rewards
Sign up your business for a Business Rewards account and earn miles when your employees travel!

14. Refer a Friend

Nominate a friend or family member to the Skywards Miles program. You’ll earn miles both when after they enroll and complete their first travel experience.

They must complete travel within 6 months of enrolling for you to receive Skywards Miles from the Refer a Friend program.

15. Use Rocketmiles to Book Hotels

earn and redeem Skywards frequent flyer miles using Rocketmiles.com
You can now earn and redeem Skywards frequent flyer miles using Rocketmiles.com! Earn miles, spend miles, or spend a combination of miles + cash.

Rocketmiles.com is a popular hotel booking website, and now they have partnered up with Emirates Skywards to help you earn (and even redeem!) frequent flyer miles for Emirates.

To take advantage of this partnership, visit the Emirates partner page for Rocketmiles, click on Earn or Redeem. This will take you to a login screen for the Emirates loyalty program and get you started.

Skywards members can choose one of three options:

  • Earn 500 – 10,000 miles per night
  • Spend earned Skywards miles
  • Spend a combination of miles and cash

Conclusion

The more strategies you know for earning loyalty program miles, the easier it is to rack up the miles in your account. Now that we’ve shown you all the ways to earn Emirates Skywards Miles it’s time for you to get started. You’ll be using miles for rewards travel in no time flat!

Photo Credits
Emirates Featured Photo: photosounds / Shutterstock.com

Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

Not Sure?

Don’t miss out on these 7 valuable benefits & perks that you’ll get access to as a cardholder!

FAQ

Why should I join Emirates Skywards?
It’s free to join the Emirates Skywards loyalty program. As a member, you will earn Skywards Miles for flights you take with Emirates and their partner airlines. You can redeem Skywards Miles for flights, hotel stays, car rentals, and more.

Members also earn Tier Miles to move up the elite status tiers (Blue, Silver, Gold, and Platinum). Each Tier level offers perks such as priority boarding and check-in, lounge access, and more.

How do you earn Skywards Miles?
There are many ways to earn Skyward miles. For instance, you can earn miles by traveling on Emirates or Emirates travel partners.

Other ways to earn miles include using specific credit cards, transferring from certain loyalty programs, and taking advantage of special offers like Refer a Friend.

What are Tier Miles?
Earning Tier Miles helps you move up to a higher status level (Blue, Silver, Gold, and Platinum). Each Tier provides perks like priority check-in, priority boarding, and lounge access., you can move up to higher status levels (Blue, Silver, Gold, and Platinum) help you move up to higher

Members also receive bonus Skywards Miles when you reach Silver, Gold, and Platinum (25%, 50%, and 75% respectively).

Who are the Emirates Skywards partners?
Emirates Skywards has many travel partners, including airlines, hotels, and car rental agencies. Find a complete list of Emirates Skywards partners here.

Can you earn Skywards miles with Qantas?
Yes, Skywards members can earn up to 1.5 Skywards Miles per each mile flown on eligible Qantas flights.

How do I create an Emirates Skywards account?
Register here for a free Emirates Skywards account

Where can I find my Emirates Skywards number?
Look for your Emirates Skywards membership number in the email you received during enrollment. If you still can’t locate the number, contact Emirates Skywards here and they will email it to you.

What is an Emirates Skywards Saver fare?
There are four types of Emirates fares: Special, Saver, Flex and Flex Plus.

  • Special fares are the least expensive but have the most restrictions.
  • Saver fares have more flexibility than Saver fares but still have some restrictions.
  • Flex fares allow changes for a fee.
  • Flex Plus fares are completely unrestricted.

What are Emirates Skywards Miles worth?
It depends on how you redeem them. It’s possible to redeem Skywards Miles for Classic Rewards with 15,000 miles. Flight upgrades begin at 9,000 Skywards Miles. Combine Points & Miles with as few as 2,000 miles.

Find out exactly how many miles are needed for a flight with the Miles Calculator.

How long are Emirates Skywards Miles valid?
Emirates Skywards Miles are valid for three years.

Can I earn Skywards Miles with a credit card?
You can transfer points to Skywards Miles from a wide variety of loyalty programs. For instance, earn points with credit cards such as:

Then, transfer them to Skywards Miles from their respective loyalty programs.