The floodgates are officially open – but not for much longer.
American Express kicked off September with one of the biggest transfer bonus promotions we've ever seen, offering bonuses of up to 30% when sending Membership Rewards points to a dozen different airline and hotel Amex transfer partners. And these bonuses are not targeted – they should be available to anyone with points from cards like the Platinum Card® from American Express or the American Express® Gold Card and more.
Scan through the list, and you'll see that many of the best Amex transfer partners can get a bonus … but they're ending soon. In almost every case, these bonuses are only available through Friday, Sept. 30 (aside from bonuses to Marriott and Choice Privileges). That means you've got just hours remaining to take advantage before these bonuses end.
Here's the full list:
- Aer Lingus Avios: 25% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,250 Aer Lingus Avios
- Aeromexico: 20% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,920 Aeromexico miles
- Air Canada Aeroplan: 15% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,150 Aeroplan points
- Air France/KLM Flying Blue: 25% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,250 Flying Blue miles
- Avianca LifeMiles: 15% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,150 LifeMiles
- British Airways Avios: 25% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,250 Avios
- Choice Privileges: 25% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,250 points
- Hawaiian Airlines: 20% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,200 HawaiianMiles
- Hilton Honors: 30% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 2,600 Hilton Honors Points
- Marriott Bonvoy: 20% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,200 Bonvoy points
- Qantas: 20% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,200 Qantas points
- Virgin Atlantic: 30% bonus, so 1,000 Membership Rewards points get you 1,300 Flying Club points
Not sure where to start? Read our guide to Amex transfer partners!
We saw a very similar transfer bonus bonanza from Amex this time last year. Typically, these transfer bonus promotions are available to just one or two partner programs at a time. To have 12 ongoing transfer bonuses at once is unbelievable.
Transferring your miles is key to getting the most value, and these transfer bonus promotions make that case even stronger – it's like getting free airline miles or hotel points. Transferring to an Amex airline partner during one of these bonus periods is one of the absolute best ways to use Amex Membership Rewards points.
How to Put These Bonuses to Use
It's never a wise move to transfer points without a points redemption in mind, as these transfers are a one-way street: Once you send your points to a partner airline or hotel, you can't get them back to your Amex account.
But with this many transfer bonuses available, there are some truly great redemptions on the table. On most of these airlines, you can book travel as far out as August 2023, which means you can capitalize on a bonus for a future trip.
Here are just a few options that come to mind:
Virgin Atlantic offers one of the cheapest ways to book Delta One Suites to Europe for 50,000 miles each way. With a 30% transfer bonus, you'd need just 39,000 points to do it.
Read more: How to Book Delta One Business Class to Europe with Virgin Atlantic Miles
You could also book roundtrip flights to Tokyo in ANA First Class through Virgin Atlantic. It's one of the best deals in the world of points and miles, and this transfer bonus makes it even better. With a 30% transfer bonus, you'd need only 85,000 points to make it happen.
Believe it or not, British Airways has one of the cheapest ways to get to Hawaii. You can fly American Airlines from the West Coast to all four major Hawaiian islands for just 26,000 Avios roundtrip. Factor in this 25% transfer bonus, and you'd need just 21,000 points to make it happen.
Read more: 8 Amazing Ways to Use Amex Transfer Bonuses
This is an incredible offer for your Amex points. Whether you're planning a trip to Europe, Hawaii, or anywhere in between, there's a way to get even more value out of your miles.
But make your plans fast, as almost all of these transfer bonuses run only though Friday, Sept. 30, which gives you just a few more hours to take advantage.
Yes, I’ve been waiting for another one of these for that RT to Tokyo in First Class. Are you able to book beyond the ORD-Tokyo journey to further destinations, or how does that work for redemptions?
You can book onward from Tokyo.
Nick, I’m sitting on a lot of Amex membership rewards, almost 900K. I would love to transfer to an airline with the best bonus for trips to Europe or beyond. Besides transferring rewards and getting the bonus points, what if anything should I be aware of in transferring. I have no immediate plans to travel in the next six months overseas, where can I transfer rewards to an airline with the least amount of restrictions for future travel?
Two months ago, I signed up for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card 80K bonus, then later there was a 30% transfer bonus to Iberia airlines and I turned that into 110K Avios to be used within 3 years. Iberia is a partner of British and I believe Aer Lingus.
This transfer bonus is tremendous, Please offer advise as to which airline program I should transfer some not all Amex rewards to and which has the least amount of restrictions, (mostly flying time restrictions). Also, would you recommend transferring more rewards to Avios with Iberia Airlines or stock up on points with a different airline?
I am not a huge fan of speculative transfers if you have no plans for them. Even with the bonus, they will be more valuable as Membership Rewards points until you are ready to use them. This post below might provide you with some ideas:
Of these what’s your favorite hotel chain?
Generally, airline transfers will provide more value, but you can certainly find value with any of these programs. Best not to transfer until you have a specific use for them.
I can never find any award space on British Airways from phoenix to Maui or to Honolulu for that matter. I have tried many different dates and times and even from Los Angeles. But it always says none available. Do you have any hints tips or pointers of how to do this on British Airways. I have plenty of AMEX points to transfer but don’t want to transfer because I can never find any awards space. Any help you can give would be greatly appreciate it thank you