One of the things that I love about American Express Membership Rewards is that they offer bonuses on points transfers to their partners fairly often.
We don’t see these to all partners (for example, it’s rare to see transfer bonuses to Delta SkyMiles or Singapore KrisFlyer), though we do see them to some (it’s common to see them to Air France-KLM Flying Blue, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, etc.).
Lately American Express has also been offering a fair number of targeted transfer bonuses. These will show up on some accounts and not others.
50% transfer bonus from Amex to Marriott
Looking at my Membership Rewards account, I notice that at the moment there’s a targeted bonus on Amex points transfers to Marriott Bonvoy. Amex points usually convert to Marriott Bonvoy at a 1:1 ratio, though my account currently shows a 50% transfer bonus.
That means points convert at a ratio of 1,000 Amex Membership Rewards points to 1,500 Marriott Bonvoy points.
Ford’s account shows no bonus at all, so clearly this is something that varies by account.
But hold off before even looking at your account:
- This transfer bonus is targeted, with different accounts targeted for different bonuses (and some not targeted for any bonuses at all)
- There’s no end date for this promotion, so it’s a “flash bonus,” meaning it could be pulled within days
- Sometimes once you look at the bonus on your account, it won’t appear again, so you need to transfer points right away
That last bullet point is key. So if you want to see if you’re targeted for this bonus, log into your Amex account, and at the top right you may see the transfer bonus as something that’s “suggested for you.”
Furthermore, you can log into your Amex account and go to the Membership Rewards transfer page, which will display the transfer ratio. But don’t click on Marriott Bonvoy, because the bonus may be pulled after the first time you click on it.
The terms at the bottom of the page specifically say “if you return to redeem points later, this offer may no longer be available.”
Is this even a good deal?
While a 50% bonus might sound like a lot, not all points currencies are created equal. Personally I value Marriott Bonvoy points at ~0.7 cents each, give or take. There are certainly ways to get outsized value from the points, but that’s my valuation.
So by my valuation you’re getting 1.05 cents of value per Membership Rewards point even with this transfer bonus.
Other people will likely have wildly different valuations of Marriott points than I do, and if that’s the case this bonus could be worth it. That’s especially true when you consider there’s no great way to earn Marriott points through everyday credit card spending anymore.
This transfer bonus works differently than many other Amex transfer bonuses, as it’s targeted, doesn’t have a published end date, and once you view the offer, it may disappear. So if you’re not ready to transfer, just go to the Amex homepage to see what offer you’re eligible for.
When you open up the Marriott Bonvoy transfer page on Amex’s website, make sure you’re ready to transfer.
Whether or not this promotion is worth it is a different story, though.
Were you targeted for a Marriott transfer bonus, and if so, do you plan on taking advantage of it?