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One of the best ways to get Big Travel with Small Money is transferring flexible points to airline and hotel partners for award flights and stays.
If you’re a Citi Prestige, Citi ThankYou Premier, or Citi Chairman cardholder, you can transfer Citi ThankYou points to airline partners. And depending on how you like to use your miles and points, you can get terrific deals booking Business and First Class award seats worth thousands of dollars.
I’ll show you how to transfer Citi ThankYou points to airlines in 4 easy steps!
How to Transfer Citi ThankYou Points
Link: Citi ThankYou Rewards
Currently, you can transfer Citi ThankYou points to:
- Hilton Hotels
- Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)
- EVA Air
- Etihad Guest
- Flying Blue (Air France / KLM)
- Garuda Indonesia
- Malaysia Airlines
- Qatar Airways
- Singapore Airlines
- Thai Airways
- Virgin America Elevate
- Virgin Atlantic
Citi ThankYou points transfer at a 1:1 ratio with all of the above partners except Virgin America (2:1 ratio) and Hilton (2:3 ratio). And transfers must occur in 1,000-point increments.
1. Sign-In to Your Citi ThankYou Account
Log-in to your Citi account and click on “ThankYou From Citi.”
Alternately, you can sign-in to Citi ThankYou Rewards directly on the Citi ThankYou Rewards website.
2. Select Points Transfer
Hover your cursor over “More Ways to Redeem” then click on “Points Transfer.”
3. Choose Your Airline
Find the airline you want to transfer points to. Then click “Transfer Now” on your desired transfer partner.
4. Transfer Your Points
Enter the number of Citi ThankYou points you’d like to transfer (remember, it must be in 1,000-point increments!). And fill in your name and airline frequent flyer number.
Accept the terms and conditions and click “Transfer Points.”
Remember, once you transfer points to an airline or hotel partner, you can NOT transfer them back!
Note: Citi says it can take up to 14 days for points to transfer to your airline account. But in my experience, it usually takes 1 to 2 days.
A Recent Example
A Million Mile Secrets team member recently transferred 4,000 Citi ThankYou Points to Virgin America for the #GoForthWithJetBlue promotion (no longer available). JetBlue would match (or better) your Virgin America Elevate account balance.
When the promotion launched, he had 28,500 Virgin America miles in his account. However, if he had just 1,501 more miles, JetBlue would award him 50,000 TrueBlue points instead of the 30,000 points he was currently qualified to receive.
Because an extra 20,000 points is such a huge difference — worth ~$300 in flights — he decided to transfer 4,000 Citi ThankYou points to Virgin America, bringing his total to 30,500 Virgin America miles.
Remember, Citi ThankYou points transfer at a 2:1 ratio to Virgin America, instead of the typical 1:1 ratio for all other airline partners. Despite the poorer ratio, the math clearly made sense in this scenario.
Note: This transfer completed in only 2 hours. Many folks report Citi ThankYou points transfer to partners in 1 to 2 days, depending on the airline.
What If Award Seats Aren’t Available?
If you have the Citi ThankYou Premier, you can redeem Citi ThankYou points towards paid travel (including airfare) through the Citi Travel Portal at a rate of 1.25 cents per point.
And folks with the Citi Prestige can use points towards flights on American Airlines and codeshare partners at a rate of 1.6 cents per point through July 23, 2017. And 1.33 cents per point for flights on other airlines through July 23, 2017.
This is a good option if you’re not flexible with your travel dates, are booking last-minute flights, or don’t want to fuss with finding award seats.
Plus, there are no blackout dates and you’ll earn airline miles for your flight!
In just 4 easy steps, you can transfer Citi ThankYou points to airline partners for Big Travel with Small Money! Transfers can take up to 14 days, though typically it takes 1 to 2 days.
You can only transfer Citi ThankYou points to partners if you’re a Citi Prestige, Citi ThankYou Premier, or Citi Chairman (no longer offered) cardholder.
If you don’t want to bother with finding award seats, you can use Citi ThankYou points to book paid travel through the Citi Travel Portal.