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Update 06/12/19 : Some users have been targeted for 50%
One thing that I love about American Express are their transfer bonuses and right now they are dishing them out! American Express is offering multiple transfer bonuses to Membership Rewards (MR) partners including Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, JetBlue True Blue, and Qantas. If the stars have aligned for you, there is a great chance that you will be flying to your destination for a fraction of the miles that are typically required.
IT JUST GOT BETTER
This morning, as I was topping off my Virgin Atlantic account for a future trip, I noticed another exciting transfer bonus that was not there last night. It is a 40% transfer bonus to British Airways Executive Club (Avios).
There appears to be no end date for this bonus so it could “disappear” at any time.
Note: It is safe to log into your account and see the offer but do not click on the actual offer. Lately, American Express has made offers disappear after they’ve been viewed and you have logged out. If you’re interested in transferring your Amex points over to British Airways, I recommend completing a transfer as soon as you see the promotion.
SHOULD YOU TRANSFER YOUR POINTS?
Possibly. <— how is that for clarity?
Personally, I would not transfer points without a, rather immediate, use in mind. Once your transfer is complete, the points/miles are with that airline (or hotel) and will remain in that account until they used or expire. American Express points are a valuable “transferrable currency.” In other words, they are more valuable as American Express Membership Rewards (MR) points than sitting, in this case, in a British Airways account.
However, there are circumstances where you can obtain significantly more value for transferring them to BA. For example…
EXAMPLE #1: New York (LGA) to Washington D.C. (DCA)
LGA to DCA is a popular business route and is priced as such. As you can see, a one-way, economy ticket will cost, at the minimum, $179.
…or you can book an award ticket through British Airways for the same 10AM flight and it will cost 7500 Avios and $5.60. In other words, you would only need to transfer 5400 MR to British Airways. That’s great value!
EXAMPLE #2: Miami (MIA) to St. Kitts (SKB)
Within the last few weeks, the price of this trip increased from 7,500 Avios but still overs serious value. Let’s take a look…you can buy a one-way, economy ticket from Miami to St. Kitts for $300+…
…or you can pay $15.60 and transfer 7900 MR to British Airways (which is 11,000 with the bonus) for same exact flight. PHENOMENAL VALUE!!
Assuming awards are available to your desired destination, transferring MR points can be a no-brainer with this promotion.
Again, there are definitely opportunities to obtain some nice value from the 40% transfer but you should only transfer when you have plans for those points. The sooner they are used, the better.
In this hobby, you never know when things may change. Recently, there was a slight devaluation in British Airways Avios and there have been rumors of a big devaluation for some time now.
Ultimately, it will happen. But it will be even more disappointing if you have transferred the points (without a plan), a devaluation takes place, and you are left with a large number of Avios in your account and no good way to spend them.
It’s also worth noting that Chase is also offering a transfer bonus when you transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards (UR) to British Airways, however, it’s only a 30% bonus. Buy if you’re UR rich and MR poor, it may be worth considering the Chase transfer.
Were you targeted for the 40% transfer to British Airways? How about Qantas? Jetblue? Virgin Atlantic?