Through February 20, 2019, the US Citi ThankYou program is offering a 25% bonus when you convert points to Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles. Points ordinarily convert at a 1:1 ratio, though during this promotion you can convert 1,000 Citi points into 1,250 Turkish miles.
There’s no limit to how often you can take advantage of this promotion, and the bonus is hard coded into the transfer ratio, meaning that you can earn the bonus on multiple transactions.
Turkish is one of Citi’s unique transfer partners, as Amex, Chase, and Capital One, all don’t partner with Turkish.
The best cards for earning Citi ThankYou points
The card has a $95 annual fee that’s waived for the first 12 months, and offers triple points on travel and gas, and double points on dining and entertainment.
On top of that, the Citi Prestige® Card now offers 5x points on dining and airfare, so can be a great option as well. The problem is that at the moment the card isn’t open to new cardmembers.
In addition to the cards that directly earn ThankYou points, the new Citi Rewards+℠ Card earns ThankYou points in conjunction with one of the above two cards. That card earns 2x ThankYou points on the first $6,000 spent per year at supermarkets and gas stations, and rounds up every purchase to the nearest 10 ThankYou points.
The value of Turkish Miles & Smiles
Turkish Airlines is part of the Star Alliance, and they definitely have one of the more “niche” programs if you have transferrable points. They do impose surcharges on most of their redemptions, though they also have reasonable award costs.
It used to be that all Star Alliance awards had to be booked by phone, though their online search tool has gotten better, and most awards are now bookable online as well.
Turkish 777 business class
To give a few examples of one way business class redemption rates (for travel originating in North America I tend to think virtually all the sweet spots are for business class redemptions, due to the surcharges):
- Within North America in business class for 15,000 miles
- US to Europe in business class costs 45,000 miles
- US to Middle East in business class costs 47,000 miles
- US to Central & North Asia in business class for 49,000 miles
- US to Southern Africa in business class for 67,500 miles
- US to Europe in first class for 67,500 miles
- US to Australia in business class for 75,000 miles
Turkish business class meal
Citi ThankYou continues to impress me so much as a points currency, given the partners they’ve added and the transfer bonuses they offered. While Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles isn’t a program I often use, it does offer excellent value, especially with a transfer bonus.
Do you plan on transferring ThankYou points to Turkish with this bonus?
(Tip of the hat to @IadisGr8)