Transfer Citi Points To Turkish With A 25% Bonus

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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

Probably the most well rounded card for earning ThankYou points is the Citi Premier℠ Card. This card offers a welcome bonus of 50,000 ThankYou points after spending $4,000 within three months.

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.

You can find the Turkish Airlines award chart here.

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

Bottom line

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)

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Comments

  1. Tk can no longer issue awards on several partners including UA and AC. Lots of info on Flyertalk about problems redeeming. Buyer beware!

  2. Tk can no longer issue awards on several partners including UA and AC. Lots of info on Flyertalk about problems redeeming. Buyer beware!

  3. Turkish have a great long business product. Their soft product /staff are phenomenal.
    The (current) failings in their 777 hard product are more than compensated for by their soft product. You can do a lot worse than fly Turkish.

  4. I had miles expiring at the end of 2018. I wanted to redeem them on UA flights. After several emails and phone conversations, with clearly Russians speaking English with a heavy accent, I was told that one can’t currently redeem TK miles on UA and AC. The call center folks had no idea when they were going to be able to issue award tix on those two carriers. If you live in the US or Canada, beware!

  5. Lucky, does this mean you could fly EWR-LAX in United PS service for 15,000 miles (12,000 Citi points) if you can find last minute award space in J? Would there be surcharges beyond the $5.60 that UA normally passes along?

  6. Why does the TK M&S site not show me any non-TK award seats? It only seems to show the TK in the guaranteed seat space, not the regular saver. Anyone else with the same experience of searching online on TK site?

  7. Good luck redeeming those miles (sarcasm). Last time I tried they asked me to come physically to JFK airport to pay the taxes and fees on the award ticket because they can’t take payment over the phone. Also can pretty much only redeem on Turkish Airlines flights.

  8. Thanks for the info ! As Citi premier card holder and an ex-Cairo expat& current Riyadh expat lady, I found Turkish award ticket quite attractive thus TYP quite useful to me. In my case, my main TYP transfer partner are both SQ and TK as I don’t collect UR any longer. Hope Citi does this bonus promo to SQ too sometime soon !

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