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Since Emirates doesn't have a credit card for the US residents, it would be difficult for you to acquire a card and earn double miles on Emirates purchases, as you would do with other airlines. But don't worry, there's no need to emigrate to the UAE. You can stay where you are and still earn tons of miles with virtually no efforts from your side.
All you need to do is apply for a travel credit card. Such a card will help you earn miles for travel purchases on travel purchases - or any other, including groceries, cinema or dining. Such cards are not tied up to any airline and extremely easy to use and redeem. Miles add up very fast and soon you'll have enough for some Emirates flights.
For example, if you take a look at Discover it® Miles, you'll find good rewards ahead: 1.5 miles for all purchases and miles are matched at the end of the first year (provided you are a new cardmember). There's also no annual fee ever and no transactions fee to spoil the fun while you are on vacation. Miles earned on Discover never expire and there's no limit to how many you can earn.