How to Circumvent This Quirk When Transferring AMEX Membership Rewards

by joeheg

The American Express Membership Rewards program allows you to transfer your points to different travel partners, giving you the flexibility to use them where they can provide the most value. You don’t have to worry about when to use your points, just transfer them when you need to make a reservation. This way, you can make the most out of your points while enjoying flexibility.

Here’s a list of the current AMEX transfer partner programs:

Airline Programs

  • Are Lingus Aerclub
  • Aeromexico Club Premier
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Air France / KLM Flying Blue
  • ANA Mileage Club
  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  • Avianca LifeMiles
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • Delta SkyMiles
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad Guest Miles
  • Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles
  • Iberia Plus Miles
  • JetBlue TrueBlue
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer
  • Qatar Airways Privilege Club
  • Singapore KrisFlyer Miles
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Hotel Programs

  • Choice Privileges Rewards
  • Hilton Honors
  • Marriott Bonvoy

Fortunately, except for a few programs, the transfer of points happens instantly.

Anyway, when I needed to top off my Marriott Bonvoy account to make a reservation, I logged into Sharon’s American Express account. I’ve already set up a totally legal way to transfer Membership Rewards points to a family member account, but I was running into a problem. It wasn’t showing me an option to link my Marriott Bonvoy number. The only option was to link Sharon’s account.

a screenshot of a computer

That’s when I realized what was wrong. Even though all of Sharon’s AMEX cards are linked under a single online account, I clicked on the Membership Rewards page from her Blue Business Plus card.

a screenshot of a credit card

However, I’m listed as an authorized user on her AMEX EveryDay card. I selected that card and went back to the Membership Rewards site. Problem solved.

a screenshot of a computer

Now I was able to enter my Marriott Bonvoy number and transfer Membership Rewards to my account. I hadn’t linked our accounts before because I don’t often transfer points to Marriott. It’s just not typically a good value. However, cash prices for hotel rooms over our travel dates are high and I only needed a few extra points to top off my account.

I just wanted to share this tip as I could see someone thinking they weren’t able to transfer points to an authorized user’s account simply because they weren’t logged into the correct card.

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