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Citi ThankYou Points have long been considered a second-rate currency in a world where points like Chase Ultimate Rewards and American Express Membership Rewards dominate. But ThankYou points are loaded with value and can be just as useful as the competition — especially as Citi continues to expand its portfolio of transfer partners.
In August, for example, Citi introduced a temporary transfer to American Airlines — a partnership many of us are hoping becomes permanent. And now, Citi is adding another transfer partner: Choice Privileges.
- ThankYou Points earned with the Citi Prestige® Card and Citi Premier® Card are now transferable to Choice Privileges at a rate of 1:2
- Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card, Citi Rewards+® Card and Citi® Double Cash Card ThankYou Points transfer to Choice at a rate of 1:1.5
- According to AwardWallet's transfer database, Choice Privilege transfers are immediate with other partners. So, we hope this is true with Citi as well.
Is This A Good Option
You're probably wondering if this is a good offer? That answer, as usual, is maybe.
First of all, it's important to know that you will probably get significantly better value transferring your Citi points to airlines, especially when Citi runs transfer bonus promotions. Recently, for example, you could transfer ThankYou points to Avianca LifeMiles and receive a 25% bonus. If you don't know why LifeMiles rock, read more here.
Turkish Airlines Miles and Smiles is another fantastic transfer partner for your Citi ThankYou Points.
What Can You Do with Choice Privilege Points
So what can you do with Choice Privilege points? Using them overseas is one great option. Choice hotels within the United States tend to be more budget-oriented style accommodations. You'll need to search hard to find anything luxurious when staying at a Choice property in the U.S.
But head over the ocean and you'll see a different story.
The above property runs currently 16,000 Choice Points a night. That's already a decent rate as the hotel usually costs around $150 per night. If transferring points from Citi, you'll only need 8,000 ThankYou Points a night. That nets nearly 2 cents per point in value from your Citi points.
Another great option is using Choice Privilege points for a stay in Scandinavia. Nordic Choice Hotels is a franchise of Choice. Although it has its own loyalty program and you won't earn Choice Privilege Points on paid stays, you can redeem Choice Privilege Points for free nights.
The Skt. Petri in Denmark costs $200 a night or you can use 20,000 Choice points (10,000 Citi ThankYou Points) to book a room here.
Transfer Choice Points to Alaska Air
Choice Privilege Points can be transferred to a handful of airlines and other travel partners.
Alaska Mileage Plan miles are packed with value but are relatively hard to earn. Additionally, Alaska doesn't partner with any of the big transferrable currencies — except for Marriott Bonvoy. Bonvoy points transfer to Alaska Air at a rate of 3:1.
So, Citi adding Choice as a transfer partner opens up a backdoor way to transfer Citi points to Alaska (or United or Aeroplan). However, you're certainly going to lose value in the transfer, so it's only good when you don't have a better source. After the double transfer, you'll get 1 mile for every 2.5 Citi ThankYou Points transferred. These airline transfer partners can also be a great use of your Choice points if you have no plans to use them for hotel stays.
Although transferring your ThankYou Points to airline miles will most likely get you the most value out of them, having more options like Choice is always great. And hopefully, this is a sign of things to come with Citi and it will continue to add more transfer partners at better than 1:1 rates.
What do you think of Citi's new transfer partnership with Choice Hotels?
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