Award programs (whether airlines, hotels, or credit cards) are complicated if you’re not in the game. Most programs have tons of rules and restrictions, which can be confusing even for people who look at this stuff every day.
One aspect that can be especially confusing is when and how you can combine and transfer your points. In this article, we’ll walk you through how to combine and transfer flexible points between your own accounts, as well as from your own account to family (e.g., spouse), friends, and authorized users.
How To Transfer Flexible Points From Your Account
There are currently 5 major flexible point programs: American Express Membership Rewards, Capital One Miles, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, and Marriott Bonvoy. When you earn points in each of these programs, you can transfer those points to the loyalty program’s partners.
For example, when you earn Amex Membership Rewards points, you can transfer those points directly to Singapore Airlines’ KrisFlyer to book a Singapore Airlines first class flight.
To highlight a more nuanced example, you can earn Chase Ultimate Rewards points, transfer those points directly to Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, and book an ANA first class flight because Virgin Atlantic and ANA are partners. Make sense?
In this article, we will focus on transferring points to airline and hotel partners. We will also cover the rules for each program, as each major flexible point program treats combining and transferring points from your account differently.
Each program will be broken up into 2 parts: combining points and transferring points.
American Express Membership Rewards
American Express Membership Rewards is a popular flexible point program for 2 reasons:
- It offers a useful lineup of airline partners to redeem your points with.
- Amex regularly offers transfer bonuses to some of its airline partners.
Some of the best ways to receive the most value with your Amex points involve transfers to:
Amex does a nice job offering its customers plenty of opportunities to earn points when spending money on its Membership Rewards cards. What you may not know is that you can also transfer Amex points across accounts!
Amex Transfer Rules
The Membership Rewards program has a few rules that are important to know before transferring or combining your points. As you’ll see in this article, all of the flexible point programs have different rules.
If you are combining Amex points, you can combine points across your accounts. You are not allowed to pool or combine points earned by another person with Membership Rewards points.
For example, if you earn Amex points with The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, you can combine your points into 1 account.
If you are transferring Amex points, you can only transfer points to a frequent traveler account in your name. You are not allowed to transfer Membership Rewards points to another person’s frequent traveler account.
For example, you can transfer Amex points to your Etihad account, but you can’t transfer points to your spouse’s Etihad account.
It’s also worth noting that Amex requires you to transfer a minimum number of points when transferring to its travel partners, which are outlined in the table below:
Amex Transfer Partners (Airlines)
|Amex Airline Transfer Partner||Min Transfer||Transfer Ratio|
(Amex > Partner)
|Aer Lingus||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Air Canada||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Avianca LifeMiles||1,000||1:1||Almost instant|
|British Airways||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Cathay Pacific||1,000||1:1||Up to 1 Week|
|Delta Air Lines||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Etihad Airways||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Flying Blue Air France/KLM||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Singapore Airlines||1,000||1:1||1-2 days|
|Virgin Atlantic||1,000||1:1||1-2 days|
Amex Transfer Partners (Hotels)
American Express has a nice lineup of both personal and business credit cards that earn Membership Rewards points.
Recommended Amex Cards (Personal)
If you’re a business owner, there are several Amex business cards that will earn Membership Rewards points.
Hot Tip: In order to keep your points, you need to make sure at least 1 Membership Rewards account is open and in good standing. If you cancel or if your primary Membership Rewards account is canceled, you will lose your Amex points; they can’t be reinstated.
Capital One Miles
While the Capital One Miles program is not nearly as popular as many of the other programs on this list, it can still provide exceptional value to those who use Capital One cards.
Capital One offers plenty of excellent ways to get top value out of its miles, including transfers to:
Capital One Transfer Rules
Lucikly for Capital One cardholders, Capital One does not provide any limits to who you can or cannot transfer miles to. So whether it’s members of your own household or friends and family that live elsewhere, you can all still pool your Capital One Miles together. Better yet, there are no caps to the number of miles you can transfer either.
Similarly, if you have multiple Capital One credit cards that earn Capital One miles, like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and Capital One Spark Miles for Business, you can transfer the miles earned from either card to the other to pool together enough points for a redemption.
When you’re ready to redeem, Capital One has a great list of transfer partners, most of which you can transfer your Capital One miles to at a 2:1.5 or 1:1 rate.
Capital One Transfer Partners
|Capital One Transfer Partner||Minimum Transfer||Transfer Ratio (CapOne > Airline/Hotel)||Transfer Time|
|ALL - Accor Live Limitless||1,000||2:1||Up to 36 hours|
|Aeromexico Club Premier||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Avianca LifeMiles||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|British Airways Avios||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||1,000||1:1||Up to 36 hours|
|Choice Privileges||1,000||1:1||Up to 24 hours|
|Emirates Skywards||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Etihad Guest||1,000||1:1||Up to 36 hours|
|EVA Infinity MileageLands||1,000||2:1.5||Up to 36 hours|
|Finnair Plus||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||1,000||1:1||Up to 36 hours|
|Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer||1,000||1:1||Up to 36 hours|
|TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles||1,000||1:1||Up to 24 hours|
Fortunately, Capital One offers plenty of great credit cards to help you rack up Capital One miles.
Recommended Capital One Cards (Personal)
Bottom Line: Capital One isn’t nearly as restrictive as many of the other credit issuers when it comes to transferring your miles between other Capital One credit cardholders.
Chase Ultimate Rewards
Chase Ultimate Rewards is another popular flexible point program with a respectable lineup of travel partners that can be leveraged for value.
Chase offers several great ways to maximize its points, including transfers to:
- British Airways Executive Club and Iberia Plus to fly American Airlines
- Air France/KLM Flying Blue to fly Delta
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer and United Airlines Mileage Plus to fly Lufthansa
- World of Hyatt for high-value hotel stays
Chase continues to innovate and offer customers an array of personal and business credit cards. Whatever your spending habits are, Chase has Ultimate Rewards credit cards that earn points that allow you to access many high-value redemptions.
Chase Transfer Rules
Before you move your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, the program has a few rules that are important to cover.
If you are combining Chase points, you can combine points with another Chase Ultimate Rewards account that belongs to you, your spouse/domestic partner, or a joint business owner.
If you are transferring Chase points to a frequent traveler account, you can only transfer points to an account that belongs to you or your spouse/domestic partner, provided the spouse or domestic partner is an authorized user living at the same address.
Hot Tip: Chase Ultimate Rewards cardholders can only make transfers to 1 authorized user on their account.
For example, you can transfer your Chase points to your spouse’s Ultimate Rewards account if your spouse is an authorized user on your account and you both live at the same address.
If you are transferring Chase points from a business account to a frequent traveler account, you can transfer points to frequent traveler accounts of business owners of the company who are also authorized users on the Ultimate Rewards business card.
For example, you can transfer your Chase points to your business partner’s United Airlines account if your business partner is an authorized user on your Ultimate Rewards business account.
Chase has the same minimum point transfer amounts for all of its partners, which are shown in the tables below:
Chase Transfer Partners (Airline)
|Chase Airline Transfer Partner||Min Transfer||Transfer Ratio|
(Chase > Airline)
|Aer Lingus AerClub||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Air France-KLM Flying Blue||1,000||1:1||1 hour|
|British Airways Executive Club||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Emirates Skywards||1,000||1:1||Almost instant|
|Iberia Plus||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer||1,000||1:1||1-2 days|
|Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|United Airlines MileagePlus||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
|Virgin Atlantic Flying Club||1,000||1:1||Almost Instant|
Chase Transfer Partners (Hotel)
Chase makes it easy to earn plenty of Ultimate Rewards points from its array of personal and business credit cards.
Recommended Chase Cards (Personal)
Business owner? See our list of the best Chase business credit cards.
Bottom Line: Chase is less restrictive than Amex when combining points across Ultimate Rewards accounts, but still makes it challenging to transfer Chase points to another person’s frequent flyer account.
Citi ThankYou Rewards
Citi’s flexible point program, ThankYou Rewards, does not receive as much attention as Amex and Chase. But that doesn’t mean the program can’t provide you and your family serious value!
A few of the best ways to use ThankYou Points include transfers to:
- Cathay Pacific Asia Miles to fly American Airlines
- Air France/KLM Flying Blue to fly Korean Air first class
- Avianca LifeMiles to fly Lufthansa
Citi Transfer Rules
When you decide to transfer your ThankYou Points, there are a few important rules to keep in mind.
If you are combining your ThankYou Points, Citi offers the most generous policy of the flexible point programs. The ThankYou program allows you to combine your points with any other Citi ThankYou member.
After the points are transferred, the new points holder will have 90 days before the points expire. You can share and receive up to 100,000 ThankYou Points in a calendar year.
For example, let’s say you and a friend want to take a trip together. You can transfer your points directly to your friend’s ThankYou Rewards account, who can then use those points to book a flight.
The ThankYou program does not allow you to transfer ThankYou Points to another person’s frequent airline traveler account.
Citi, like Chase, has the same minimum point transfer amounts for all of its partners, which are shown in the table below:
Citi Transfer Partners
|Citi Transfer Partner||Min Transfer||Transfer Ratio||Transfer Time|
|Aeromexico Club Premier||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Air France / KLM Flying Blue||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Avianca Airlines Lifemiles||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Choice Privileges||1,000||2:1||Almost Instantly|
|Cathay Pacific||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Emirates Skywards||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Etihad Airways||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|EVA Air||1,000||1:1||2 Days|
|JetBlue Airways||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Qantas Airways||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Qatar Airways||1,000||1:1||2 Days|
|Singapore Airlines||1,000||1:1||2 Days|
|Thai Airways||1,000||1:1||4 Days|
|Turkish Airlines||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Virgin Atlantic||1,000||1:1||Almost Instantly|
|Wyndham Rewards||1,000||1:1||Within 24 Hours|
While Citi doesn’t have as deep of a bench of credit cards as Amex and Chase, it does regularly offer high sign-up bonuses on its ThankYou Rewards-earning credit cards.
Recommended Citi Cards (Personal)
Bottom Line: The Citi ThankYou Rewards program is ideal if you are looking to transfer points to anyone, including your spouse, a family member, or a friend. For more information, check out our FAQs about Citi ThankYou Points.
Marriott Bonvoy has the most expansive list of airline transfer partners with more than 40.
This is great news when you also consider the fact that Marriott offers a 5,000-mile bonus for every 60,000 points you transfer to an airline partner.
Some of the best ways to use Marriott Bonvoy points include transfers to:
- Air Canada Aeroplan to fly Star Alliance partners to Europe
- Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan to fly Cathay Pacific to Asia
- Japan Airlines Mileage Bank to fly its own metal to Japan
- Korean Air SKYPASS to fly its SkyTeam partners to Europe
We’ve also written about some of the best ways to use your Marriott Bonvoy points for award flights, hotel stays, and Hotel +Air Packages.
Make sure you maximize your earnings, as Marriott Bonvoy offers a number of ways to earn points from its credit cards to stays at its portfolio of hotels across the world.
Marriott Bonvoy Transfer Rules
When you decide to move your Marriott Bonvoy points, the rules are straightforward.
If you are combining Marriott Bonvoy points between accounts, you can transfer up to 100,000 points in a calendar year to another Marriott member whose account has been open for at least 60 days. This is valid whether you are sending or receiving the points.
Separately, a new Marriott member may receive points after 30 days if the member has had qualifying activity on his or her account. The catch with transferring points is that you must contact Member Support to initiate the transfer.
For example, let’s say you and your spouse want to book flights for a trip, but your spouse doesn’t have enough points. You can combine the points in your account with the points in your spouse’s account. From there, you can transfer the points to the program of your choice to book your flights.
You are not allowed to transfer Marriott Bonvoy points to a frequent flyer account that is not your own. Instead, transfer your Marriott Bonvoy points to another Marriott Bonvoy member’s account; then that member can book a flight with the points in their account.
Marriott Bonvoy sets a minimum of 3,000 and a maximum of 240,000 points that can be transferred per day.
|Marriott Bonvoy Transfer Partner||Minimum Points Transfer||Transfer Ratio (Marriott Bonvoy > Partner)||Bonus Airline Miles|
for Every 60K Marriott Bonvoy Points Transferred
|Aegean Airlines Miles+Bonus||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 days|
|Aer Lingus Aeroclub||3,000||3:1||5,000||unknown|
|Aeroflot Bonus||3,000||3:1||5,000||20 days|
|AeroMexico Club Premier||3,000||3:1||5,000||4 days|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||3,000||3:1||5,000||5 days|
|Air France/KLM Flying Blue||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 day|
|Air New Zealand Airpoints||3,000||200:1||25||1 day|
|Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan||3,000||3:1||5,000||4 days|
|Alitalia MilleMiglia||3,000||3:1||5,000||7 days|
|American Airlines AAdvantage||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|ANA Mileage Club||3,000||3:1||5,000||4 days|
|Asiana Airlines Asiana Club||3,000||3:1||5,000||4 days|
|Avianca Airlines LifeMiles||3,000||3:1||5,000||1 day|
|British Airways Executive Club||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 days|
|Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||3,000||3:1||5,000||5 days|
|Copa Airlines ConnectMiles||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 days|
|Delta Air Lines SkyMiles||3,000||3:1||5,000||1 day|
|Emirates Skywards||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 days|
|Etihad Guest||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 days|
|Hainan Airlines Fortune Wings Club||3,000||3:1||5,000||8 days|
|Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles||3,000||3:1||5,000||1 day|
|Iberia Plus||3,000||3:1||5,000||1 day|
|Japan Airlines JAL Mileage Bank||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|Korean Air SKYPASS||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|LATAM Pass||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|Qatar Airways Privilege Club||3,000||3:1||5,000||3 days|
|Saudi Arabian Airlines Alfursan||3,000||3:1||5,000||unknown|
|Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards||3,000||3:1||5,000||1 day|
|TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go||3,000||3:1||5,000||unknown|
|Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus||3,000||3:1||5,000||4 days|
|Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles||3,000||3:1||5,000||unknown|
|United MileagePlus||3,000||3:1.1||5,500||3 days|
|Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer||3,000||3:1||5,000||2 days|
|Virgin Australia Velocity||3,000||3:1||5,000||1 day|
There are currently has a number of Marriott Bonvoy personal and business credit cards, typically with generous sign-up bonuses too.
Recommended Marriott Bonvoy Cards
Hot Tip: Did you know you can also transfer Hyatt points to airline partners? Most transfers are at a 5:2 ratio and transfers can take 6-8 weeks, so it’s not a great way to use your Hyatt points.
With the constant shuffling of airline partners, award redemption rates, and credit card restrictions, a valuable strategy is to earn points in a flexible points program instead of a specific airline frequent flyer program. That way when 1 partner leaves or the inevitable award chart devaluation occurs, you will have hedged your bets by not being stuck holding only 1 currency.
Whether you are earning points by yourself, with a spouse/significant other, or you have the entire family involved, it’s important to know how to move your points around to help with booking your next redemption.
The information regarding the Capital One® Venture® Rewards card, Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business card, Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card, Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business, Chase Freedom Unlimited® card, Citi Premier℠ Card, and Citi Prestige® 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 Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, click here.