16 Best Ways to Earn Lots of Emirates Skywards Miles

Emirates First Class A380 - First Class Lounge

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

The first Emirates flight took to the sky in October 1985 with only 2 aircraft in its operations. Now, Emirates operates the world’s biggest fleet of Boeing 777s and Airbus A380s.

This post will teach you about which credit cards to use to earn more miles and how you can benefit from incorporating them into your miles-earning strategies. Emirates-branded cards are not available in the U.S., but fortunately, you can earn points by using many other credit cards and transfer them to your Skywards account. 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 building up 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 Login
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. Image Credit: Emirates

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). Additionally, the Emirates Miles Calculator enables you to calculate the number of miles you’ll earn based on your fare, route, and class.

Type of Fare*Special
 Flex Plus
TierBlue: 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 Skywards Status Tiers

As we mentioned, the Skywards Tiers are Blue, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. There are 2 ways to move to the next level: 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 2 months even if you don’t meet the renewal qualifications during the annual review.

Emirates Membership Tiers
Reach higher Tier Levels by earning qualifying Tier Miles or taking the required number of Emirates flights. Image Credit: Emirates

Earning Miles With Credit Cards

4. Chase Credit Cards

The single best way to earn Emirates Skywards Miles is by leveraging Chase Ultimate Rewards credit cards. The transfer ratio is 1:1, and miles get transferred almost instantly to your account. You can transfer in increments of 1,000. The best part is that you can earn Chase points across tons of different credit cards for each bonus category.

Recommended Chase Cards (Personal)

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card - This is our favorite beginners travel rewards card, which is currently offering Chase's best offer ever of 100,000 point bonus after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,250 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

The card earns 5x points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3x points on dining and 2x points on all other travel purchases, plus more. Enjoy a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, and other travel benefits such as excellent travel insurance coverage, including car rental insurance and no foreign transaction fees, this card is a very rewarding card.
Chase Sapphire Reserve® - This premium card will get you access to 1,300+ airport lounges. as well as a number of other card benefits. The current sign up bonus is 60,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. You'll also get a $300 travel credit per year which wipes away a big chunk of the $550 annual fee. As an extra bonus, until 12/31/21, gas station & grocery store purchases will also count towards earning your Travel Credit.

Earn big with this card, earn 5X total points on air travel and 10X total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3X points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
Chase Freedom Unlimited® card - A solid, no annual fee card that earns you a $200 bonus after you spend $500 in your first 3 months. Earn 5% cash-back on grocery store purchases (not including Target or Walmart purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year, and 5% on travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Then earn 3% cash-back on dining and drugstore purchases, and 1.5% cash-back on all other purchases, but you won't get any travel benefits with this card.

If you’re a business owner, see our article on the best Chase business credit cards.

5. American Express Credit Cards

Make purchases with your American Express credit cards to build up your Membership Rewards points. Then transfer them at a 1:1 ratio to receive Skywards Miles in increments of 1,000 (but watch out for sporadic bonuses that Amex often runs 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 Cards (Personal)

The Platinum Card® from American Express - There's currently a new welcome bonus offer of 60,000 100,000 Membership Rewards Points after spending $6,000 on purchases in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Plus, earn 10x points on eligible purchases on the Card at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S., on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first 6 months of Card Membership.

This is our #1 card for accessing 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide, including Priority Pass (enrollment required). We leverage ~$4,900+ in benefits and perks from the card every year. Terms Apply. For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum card, click here.
American Express® Gold Card - This card has a new welcome bonus of 35,000 60,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $4,000 on purchases in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

We love using this card as it earns 4X Membership Rewards Points at restaurants, including takeout and delivery, and earns 4X Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).

There's no better card in our opinion if you eat out and/or shop at supermarkets regularly; and you'll have access to many benefits and perks. Terms apply and for rates and fees of the Amex Gold card, click here.

Recommended Amex Cards (Business)

The Business Platinum Card® from American Express - Right now, there's a new welcome bonus of 85,000 100,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $15,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.

See how we get $4,000+ in value per year by leveraging many of the benefits & perks, including access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide. Terms Apply. For rates and fees of the Business Platinum, click here.
American Express® Business Gold Card - one of our favorite Amex business cards because we earn 4x points across the top 2 select categories that we spend the most money in each month, such as Facebook or Google ads. The 4x points applies to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these 2 categories each calendar year. After that, you earn 1x.

The current welcome bonus is 70,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $10,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply. For rates and fees of the Business Gold, click here.
The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express - A super simple, no-annual-fee card that earns you 2x points on everyday business purchases, up to $50,000 in purchases per year. After that, earn 1x. Right now, you can earn 15,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply. For rates and fees of the Blue Business Plus, click here.

6. Capital One Miles

Instead of redeeming your Capital One miles in the Capital One Travel Portal for cash tickets, you now have the option to transfer them to your Emirates Skywards account at a 2:1 ratio.

Using Emirates Skywards Miles can potentially save a ton of miles when looking to book first or business class tickets by using the Emirates Skywards award chart, compared to 1 cent per point of the cash ticket price using the Capital One Travel Portal.

Make sure you have a Capital One card that has the transferable miles feature. Here are our picks:

Recommended Capital One Cards That Earn Miles (Personal)

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card - This card is packed with lots of benefits and perks. Earn 60,000 mile sign up bonus once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. We recommend this as a no-brainer card if you even semi-regularly stay at hotels since this card earns unlimited 2x miles on every purchase.
Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card - This is an excellent card for those looking to earn 1.25x miles per $1 on every purchase. With a 20,000 mile sign up bonus (worth $200 toward travel) after spending $500 within the first 3 months and no annual fee, it's a strong choice.

7. Marriott Bonvoy Credit Cards

You can earn Marriott points and transfer those to Emirates at a transfer rate of 3:1. Plus, for every 60,000 Marriott points that you transfer, you’ll receive an extra 5,000 Emirates Skywards Miles bonus.

Recommended Marriott Bonvoy Cards

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card - For a limited time only, earn 125,000 Bonus Points and 1 Free Night Award (value up to 50,000 points) after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Get automatic silver elite status each account anniversary year; and a free night award (valued up to 35,000 points) every year after account anniversary. Plus, earn up to 17x total Bovoy points per $1 when using your Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card at at over 7,000 participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels, and 2x Bonvoy points per $1 on all other purchases. Annual Fee is $95.
Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card - For a limited time only, earn 60,000 Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Earn up to 14x total Bonvoy points per $1 when using your Marriott Bonvoy Bold card at over 7,000 participating in Marriott Bonvoy hotels, earn 2X on other travel purchases, then 1x on all other purchases. A solid card for Marriott loyalists looking for a no-annual-fee card offering Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status.
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card - Earn 75,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. Plus, earn up to $200 in Statement Credits for eligible purchases at U.S. Restaurants within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Earn 6x per $1 at hotels participants in the Marriott Bonvoy™ program plus 3x at U.S. restaurants and flights booked directly with airlines. Annual Fee is $450. Terms Apply. For rates and fees of the Bonvoy Brilliant card, click here.
Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card - For a limited time, earn 125,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points & 2 bonus Free Night Awards after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months. Each bonus Free Night Award has a redemption level up to 50K points. Certain hotels have resort fees. Offer ends 11/3/2021.

This is a solid card for business owners who will get complimentary Marriott Bonvoy silver elite status. Annual fee is $125. Terms Apply. For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business Card, click here.

Earn Miles With Emirates Travel Partners 

8. Marriott Your World Rewards

Emirates Skywards and Marriott Bonvoy have a partnership called Your World Rewards designed to help you earn more miles and benefits.

When you stay at a Marriott property and have Emirates Skywards Silver, Gold, or Platinum status, you’ll earn 1 Skywards frequent flyer program mile for every $1 spent along with your Marriott points! Furthermore, if you are a Skywards Gold or Platinum member, you’ll also get benefits like complimentary in-room Wi-Fi, priority check-in, and 4 p.m. late check-out.

It also works in reverse: Marriott Gold, Platinum, Titanium, and Ambassador Elite members will earn 3 Marriott points for every $1 you spend on eligible Emirates flights in addition to Skywards Miles. Marriott Platinum, Titanium, and Ambassador Elite members will also enjoy priority check-in and priority boarding.

9. Emirates Airline Partners

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

Air MauritiusUp to 2 miles/1 mile flownJapan AirlinesUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flownQantasUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flown
Alaska AirlinesUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flownJetBlueUp to 1 mile /1 mile flownS7 AirlinesUp to 1.25 miles/1 mile flown
Copa AirlinesUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flownJetstarUp to 1.25 miles/1 mile flownSouth African AirwaysUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flown
easyJet*Redeem onlyKorean AirUp to 2 miles/1 mile flownTAP PortugalUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flown
GOL Linhas Aéreas InteligentesUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flownMalaysia AirlinesUp to 1.5 miles/1 mile flown

*While you can’t earn miles with easyJet, you can redeem them starting at 8,250 miles.

10. Book Car Rentals

Emirates Skywards partners with 7 car rental agencies, each of which offers miles per rental for Skywards members. Click on a link below to learn the terms and conditions of the partner offers.

Car Rental AgencyEarned Miles/RentalCar Rental AgencyEarned Miles
AvisUp to 500 milesEuropcarUp to 1,000 miles
BudgetUp to 500 milesHertzUp to 3.5 miles/$1
CarTrawlerUp to 1 mile/$1SixtUp to 2,000 miles
Dollar Rent-A-CarUp to 1,000 miles

Hot Tip: If you rent cars frequently, consider paying for your car rental with a card that offers excellent insurance coverage — it could save you a lot of money!

11. Emirates Hotel Partners

You can also make transfers from the following hotel loyalty programs:

HotelTransfer Ratio
Hyatt2.5:1 — 5,000 bonus miles if transfer 50,000 miles in 1 transaction
Marriott Bonvoy*3,000:1,000 — 5,000 bonus miles if you transfer 60,000 points in 1 transaction
Radisson Rewards Americas10:1

*For other Marriott Bonvoy 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 Bonvoy, Hyatt, and IHG hotels:

Special Offers

12. Skywards Special Offers

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

Emirates Special Offers
Check the Skywards Special Offers page for new promotional offers. Image Credit: Emirates

13. Emirates Skywards My Family and Skysurfers

Emirates Skywards My Family
Emirates Skywards My Family allows you to combine miles into a family account. Image Credit: Emirates

Emirates Skywards My Family allows you to pool miles that your family members earn from flying Emirates. This excludes partner flights and other ways to earn Emirates Skywards Miles.

Up to 8 travelers related to the designated family head may pool their miles: husband, wife, partner, father, mother, step-father, step-mother, father-in-law, mother-in-law, son, step-son, daughter, step-daughter, brother, sister, granddaughter, grandson, and domestic helper.

Each member can designate what percent of future earned miles will go to the pool: 100%, 75%, 50%, 25%, or 0%. You can adjust this rate at any time for future mile earnings. Prior earned miles do not go to the pool (you can still pay for miles transfer).

Like individual miles, My Family miles expire 3 years after they are earned (the end of the month of the family head’s birthday).

Emirates also offers the Skysurfers program, which allows children age 2-16 to get extra benefits while earning miles. They can spend their Skywards 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. Image Credit: Emirates

14. Book an Emirates Holidays Package

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

Emirates Holidays
Earn miles with an Emirates Holidays package. Image Credit: Emirates

15. Business Rewards

Enroll your business in Emirates Business Rewards and earn Business Rewards points when your employees travel. You can add an unlimited number of employees as well.

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

16. Use Rocketmiles to Book Hotels

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

Rocketmiles.com is a popular hotel booking website, and now it has 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 1 of 3 options:

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

Final Thoughts

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.

The information regarding the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card, and Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer. 

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Business Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, click here.

Frequently asked questions

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 its 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 Skywards 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.

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) by earning more Tier Points or by flying on Emirates.

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 to receive it via email.

What is an Emirates Skywards Saver fare?

There are 4 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 Special 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 as little as 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 3 years. They will expire at the end of the birth month in the calendar year at least 3 years after miles were accrued.

Stephen Au

About Stephen Au

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Stephen has been privileged to enjoy many premium cabin products and 5-star hotels. A petroleum engineer by trade, Stephen caught the travel bug in college when he traveled to Asia several times. After 2 years of continual promotions, Stephen quit his safe and secure career path in favor of entrepreneurship.

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Disclaimer: Any comments listed below are not from the bank advertiser, nor have they been reviewed or approved by them. No responsibility will be taken by the bank advertiser for these comments.


  1. Cheryl Buerckner September 2, 2018

    Special fares are the least expensive but have the most restrictions.
    Saver fares have more flexibility than Saver fares but still have some restrictions.
    I think u meant Saver fares have more flexibility than Special fares?? Not saver fares


  2. What I don’t understand is that many of the airline partners are full partners. You can only earn points for one at a time. Such as Alaska, I was told that I cannot earn Alaska points and Emirates points on the same flight? One or the other. Seems a little crazy. Basically stop earning on my current carrier? Very strange partnership. Open to comments or for you to tell me it is different.


    • Hi DG. You can only earn miles on one airline for a specific flight. You can select the airline you prefer but you cannot select more than one. If you could select more than one, you would be earning double miles for the flight, which would be wonderful, but it is not allowed.


Any thoughts or questions? Comment below!

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