1 Million Membership Rewards Points

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Dec 17, 2004
A colleague of mine just won 1 million membership rewards points from Amex. She is not currently a member of any frequent flyer program and wants some advice on which one would be the best to join to maximise her use of the points on flights.

Any advice appreciated
oohhher nice!

welcome to frequentflyer.com.au and congrats to your friend!

There is an account called GIVEDOOTALLYOURPOINTSNOW that your friend should look at transferring them to. It's a fantastic program but you won't get much out of it except the warm fuzzy feeling inside. :D
welt, welcome to AFF and congratulations to your friend - 1M points can go a long way.... :D

Okay, she not a member of any FF program. so she hasn't done any/much travel before or doesn't believe that with the little travel she did, these programs were worth joining (I think she might change her mind now). Sounds like she should have more than 1M points in her Amex Rewards program if she's been a member for some time and hasn't been transferring them anywhere.

So with no status anywhere, she'll be an entry-level FF. She'll be at the bottom of the rung to be able to access FF award seats, she'll have to think of booking any award travel a fair way in advance to be able to obtain the seats.

Presumably she lives in Australia, but a lot depends on whether she is single, married or married with children. This will dictate the burn rate (type and number of awards she obtains with the points).

Where does she want to travel??
Is she going to use the points to upgrade from Economy to Business (having bought the Economy ticket); or simply purchase the award seats (whether in Economy, Business or First). Upgrading points are often better deals (because of the cost of Business Class tickets), therefore her points will last longer.
Does she want to blow them all at once on a holiday of a lifetime??

Hastening slowly would be my first point. There is no need to transfer the points out of the Amex Rewards program until she absolutely needs to use them. Deciding on which "partner" FF program to use may also be determined by where she wants to fly.

She has some unique decisions to be made - oh, to be in her position... 8)
She could always wait for a similar promotion as Amex/QF had a few years ago where they offered a 20% premium on points transfers. I sent about 200K points from Amex to QF for a bonus of 40K points at the time! But such promotions are few and far between now :( . I've got another 160K Amex points waiting for a good home, but they are safe where they are for now.
Unless she wants to book a complex trip, e.g., RTW, wouldn't it be better to just redeem flights through Amex? Don't know about Aus, but in NZ, a trans-Tasman flight costs fewer points with Amex MR than through Air NZ or QF.

Like Lindsay said, leave the points where they are until she knows where she wants to go and how she wants to get there. Also, some programmes have a maximum transfer, which I suspect will be much lower than 1m.

don't forget she can convet them into SPG points (starwood) spg.com at a rate of 3 amex rewads = 1 SPG point. so she gets 333,333...

what i would suggest perhaps is to redeem for some flight awards (qantas will be the best) supplemented with some towards a starwood cash and points award..... so the flight and hotel is included with a small cash outlay.
How about Asia Miles.

Much cheaper if you use Business class AND want availability. Amex are OK with Asia Miles. Much easier to use than the QF Website

Qantas makes it pretty hard sometimes.

I discovered this because of a paid Business fare to NY this month with JAL.

Comments from the experienced ?


Silver QC FF
bradwright said:
How about Asia Miles.

From my 18 Dec response:

Lindsay Wilson said:
So with no status...she'll be an entry-level FF. She'll be at the bottom of the rung to be able to access FF award seats, she'll have to think of booking any award travel a fair way in advance to be able to obtain the seats.

If she is buying pre 25 May for travel up to 355 days in advance, then that will be the best use of points. Her biggest problem may be where shall I go, when and for how long???????
AAdvantage would be my choice

Why not transfer the miles into AAdvantage (giving you lifetime gold to boot) and then use the miles to claim awards on any of the oneworld airlines.
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