Amex Membership Rewards Transfers To SPG End Today (But You Shouldn’t Care)

Filed Under: American Express, Starwood Preferred Guest

Marriott’s new loyalty program is launching as of August 18, 2018. Not everything is happening on that date, but rather we’re seeing some changes on August 1, other changes on August 18, and other changes on August 26, among other dates.

Currently Amex Membership Rewards is transfer partners Starwood Preferred Guest (1,000:333 ratio), and Chase Ultimate Rewards is transfer partners with Marriott Rewards (1,000:1,000 ratio). Both programs will continue to be transfer partners with the new Marriott program.

However, for a while one of those options will be suspended.

As part of the updates to Marriott’s loyalty program, Amex Membership Rewards points can’t be transferred to Starwood Preferred Guest starting August 1, 2018. Then once the new program is lauched, it will be possible to transfer points to the new Marriott program.

Given that all Starpoints convert into Marriott points at a 1:3 ratio, the transfer ratio will also be updated to 1:1, meaning you’re essentially getting the same value as before.

So if you are thinking of transferring Amex Membership Rewards points to Starwood Preferred Guest, today is the last time you can do so.

However, as far as I’m concerned, you really shouldn’t. Converting Amex points into Starpoints is a terrible value. I value Starpoints at 2.2 cents each and Amex points at 1.7 cents each, so at a 3:1 ratio you’re getting quite a bad value, since you’re only getting a return of ~0.7 cents. I’d much rather transfer Amex points to one of their excellent airline partners, like Aeroplan or KrisFlyer.

So if you do care about this transfer ratio then you’ll want to transfer points today, though you really should avoid doing that if at all possible.

This change has no impact on pointed earned with the Starwood American Express. That card is undergoing some changes in terms of the earning structure (it will go from earning one Starpoint per dollar spent to earning two Marriott points per dollar spent), but that’s unrelated to these Membership Rewards points.

  1. I think it can depend on the redemption esp when you consider the 5th night free benefit. Recently transferred like 240,000 amex points for a five night stay at Ritz Kapalua. Was around a holiday so the cash value was like $4,000. Not the best, but was the vacation i really wanted to take and seemed like a decent value.

  2. Today is also the last day to capitalize on warning 40,000 bonus MR points through their KLM and AirFrance offers.

  3. Need some help. I’m currently at 190K Marriott points. I know that converting American Express MR to SPG is a bad conversion normally. But i want at least 270K Marriott points for the Cat 1-5 Nights and Flights package.

    Is it worth it to convert 80K MR to about 80K Marriott points to get that NF package today? I have no other way to generate 80K Marriott between now and the changes on the 18th when Marriott NF packages are devalued and i get much less miles. I plan on getting 120K on Southwest.

  4. @Lucky When will the devaluation of the Starwood card go into effect? August 1? August 18?

  5. You SHOULD care if you’re in Canada since MR to SPG rate in Canada is 2:1. Transferred all of my MR to SPG a week ago.

  6. In the UK they blocked those transfers a few days ago without any warning, promising to resume on the 8th (strange date)

  7. “However, as far as I’m concerned, you really shouldn’t. Converting Amex points into Starpoints is a terrible value. I value Starpoints at 2.2 cents each and Amex points at 1.7 cents each, so at a 3:1 ratio you’re getting quite a bad value, since you’re only getting a return of ~0.7 cents.”

    I agree that converting AMEX MR points to Starpoints is a terrible value, but for a different reason. AMEX points are worth more as AMEX points.

    Please keep in mind that Starpoints are NOT worth anywhere 2.x cpp when redeemed as airline miles (I estimate they are worth ~1.25cpp or even less as miles) , whereas AMEX MR points are worth in the vicinity of 1.7cpp as airline miles. You want to get 2.x cpp out of Starpoints? Gotta redeem them for hotel award stays…

  8. @Lucky- Not sure if you addressed this in a previous post as I searched and couldn’t find it. If a person already has the personal Amex platinum card they automatically got Gold status with SPG. Will Mariott continue this benefit?

  9. @ hybrid — Yep, they’ll continue to receive Marriott Gold status (though Marriott Gold status is worth less in the new program than the old program).

  10. @Lucky- further to hybrid’s question… I too have gold status through Amex pers plat. Nice to see it will continue, but I understand it will count for less in the future.

    I have an upcoming rewards stay starting Aug 21 at a Delta (Marriott). The property has a beautiful lounge with amazing views. I’ve been given access to it in the past; will I have access this time?? Thanks!

  11. As always DCS trolls trolls trolls away.

    Send 60K to AA. Get 75K AA miles. Redeem for one way CX biz to or from Asia to US. Easy 5-10 CPM redemption.

    Much like Trump being unable to criticize Russia, he cannot say a single positive thing about SPG ever.

  12. @UA-NYC is as clueless as ever. That redemption would have an even greater value in another currency after the difficulty on the EARN side is figured in. But we are not even talking about specific cases. We are talking about AVERAGE redemption values, you know, like for example UR points, which are much easier to earn, redeeming for 1.5cpp thru Chase… Although one can get a lot higher value on specific premium cabin tickets with transfer partners.

    SPG is officially dead as of today. Rest in peace. Is that nice enough for you? Can we, as of today, stop obsessing with dead programs , please? 🙂

  13. 100% agree with some of the other comments. It depends on what you will do with the rewards, and under the new Marriott program with the fifth night free, it is basically the same as before under Marriott. Sure, some more tiers and many rewards becoming more expensive, but the fifth night free kind of evens it out.

  14. Still, don’t like one thing. SPG earned 1 point per dollar spent, which equaled 3 Marriott points. Not you will only get 2 points for dollar spent with the Marriott card. A 33 percent devaluation.

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