Last Chance to Transfer Your Miles: Capital One Losing Two Transfer Partners

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Update 5/13/2020: It was originally unclear if transfers would be possible on May 13. The airline transfer partners were removed on May 13, meaning last-minute transfers aren't possible.

Capital One has quietly shared—via the transfer miles page—that two loyalty programs are leaving the Capital One Miles transfer program on May 13, 2020. After today, cardholders will no longer be able to transfer miles to Hainan Airways Fortune Wings Club and Qatar Airways Privilege Club. This was first caught by Doctor of Credit today, meaning cardholders are getting almost no notice before this change.

Key Terms

  • Hainan Airways and Qatar Airways are leaving the Capital One transfer program effective May 13, 2020
  • You will no longer be able to transfer miles to these programs on or after May 13.

What's the Damage?

In our post covering Capital One's transfer partners, we discussed how both of these partners weren't all that lucrative for cardholders in the first place.

Hainan Airways Business Class on the Boeing 787-9

Hainan Airways is an airline from mainland China. Its loyalty program—Fortune Wings Club—is also the loyalty program for a slew of other non-alliance Chinese carriers. Award pricing is complex, with different distance-based award charts for each partner airline. In most cases, it’s not especially rewarding. However, it might come in handy if you needed a short, domestic flight in China.

Qatar Airways business class on the Airbus A350-900 (Photo by JT Genter)

Qatar's Privilege Club is a similar story. Although it's a member of the Oneworld Alliance, partner award pricing generally isn't very competitive—nor is pricing for its own flights, for that matter. The one circumstance when transferring Capital One Miles to Privilege Club could be a good idea was to take advantage of an ‘Easy Deal‘ promo.

Our Take

Capital One has been really busy adjusting the benefits of its credit card portfolio recently. Last month we saw the start of a ‘Capital One Offers' program in beta as well as two newly added redemption options for mileage-earning cards.

The hard pill to swallow in this is how little notice cardmembers received. Even if there weren't a lot of people taking advantage of these partners, the few that were are now left out to dry with one day notice. That's simply unacceptable.

Thankfully, this shouldn't be too painful of a loss for most Capital One cardholders. However, if you've been meaning to transfer miles to Hainan or Qatar, you ought to do it today!

Have you redeemed miles with Hainan or Qatar?

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Comments

  • Avatar

    Hainan Airlines got into financial trouble this year and had to be bailed out by the government. I wouldn’t transfer my points to Hainan Airlines even if it were not removed.

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    They don’t have great domestic travel partners anyway.

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    Didn’t realize you can transfer to these two. Too late. Oh well…

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    It’s always sad to lose transfer partners but luckily Qatar and Hainan do not have the best award charts.

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    It may be true that the programs weren’t so lucrative for cardholders, but the bigger question is if it’s indicative of a larger trend. Is the “Game” up? Are there still advantages and deals to be found – especially in light of the economic damage being suffered by the airline industry. Eager to hear thoughts from other commenters. Thanks.

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    My husband and I flew Hainan Airlines from Beijing to Seattle business class and it was phenomenal!! So glad that we took the opportunity to fly with that partner!!

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    Florencia says:

    As it is not one of the most used partners, it is not transcendental news. It also seems to me that communication is always essential. The company would have to communicate better.

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    Not a big loss there. Can’t believe these were popular partners.

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    The sudden drop of two transfer partners and the lack of notice is a little disconcerting, but I won’t miss these transfer partners either.

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    I wonder what the reason is and I wonder how many people have transferred points either program.

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    Does the pandemic have anything to do with the departure of these two partners?

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      In this current airline environment, I think it’s safest to assume every decision could be related to the pandemic. Many airlines are in survival mode, so relationships with them in any capacity – as customers or business partners – are at risk of change or outright elimination.

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    Very disappointing that they provided little notice even though these partners weren’t the most valuable. They can’t expect loyalty if they don’t give any in return.

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    Maryjane says:

    It is never good when a company changes things without notifying cardholders. It is true that most people won’t care about these particular transfer partners, but it does not bode well for a card that, until recently, was making strides toward becoming one of the most competitive travel cards in the business.

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    The loss of these two partners is not much of an issue. Never used them.

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    What are the sweet spots of the Qatar program?

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    I have not used nor do I foresee using points transfers to either of these companies. For me I would not lose out anything without this partner.

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    Not that this will affect many cardholders, but that’s still an underhanded thing to do without notice or warning. A simple e-mail would have been sufficient and showed a certain level of respect for their customers.