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Citi is offering a new 25% bonus for ThankYou Point transfers to Flying Blue — the combined loyalty program for Air France, KLM, and a few other airlines. This potentially opens the door to incredible value for certain award redemptions.
Flying Blue 25% Transfer Bonus Key Terms
- Through 11:59 pm ET on April 16, 2021, transfer Citi ThankYou Points to Flying Blue and receive 25% bonus miles.
- Transfer from ThankYou Points to Flying Blue typically process instantly.
- The 25% bonus is hardcoded, meaning you can transfer as many times as you like and receive the bonus every time.
- There is no limit to the number of points you can transfer under this promotion.
Is this Flying Blue transfer bonus a good deal?
Flying Blue is somewhat underrated as far as airline loyalty programs go. It gets a bad rep for utilizing dynamic award pricing and often levying significant fees on award redemptions. However, there are several pockets of incredible value, and this 25% bonus only exaggerates them.
Flying Blue Promo Rewards
Air France offers a monthly promotion offering discounted award rates between certain destinations and Paris/Amsterdam. These are destination or departure specific and typically only involve one or two destinations in North America. However, given border closures resulting from COVID-19, Flying Blue Promo Awards only feature economy awards to certain European destinations.
In any case, if you happen to be in Europe, you could potentially maximize March's Promo Rewards and this transfer bonus simultaneously. This would result in awards like Paris to Cork for 4,000 ThankYou points each way or Athens to Paris for 7,000 ThankYou points one-way by using this Flying Blue transfer bonus.
North America to Europe in Business Class
Another one of my favorite Flying Blue sweet spots involves business class awards to secondary European cities. For whatever reason, Flying Blue often offers these awards for less than itineraries terminating at Paris or Amsterdam.
One itinerary I fly often is from my home in Los Angeles to Porto, Portugal—where my wife grew up. At certain times of the year, this one-stop itinerary goes for as little as 53,000 Flying Blue miles (plus taxes) per person in business class.
However, during this Flying Blue 25% transfer bonus, this same flight would only cost 43,000 Citi ThankYou points each way. That's an incredible deal!
…Or fly to Israel instead
Interestingly, Flying Blue also considers Israel part of Europe—at least when it comes to award redemptions. That means it's possible to book an itinerary from Chicago to Tel Aviv for the same price I listed for my previous example to Portugal.
Paying just 43,000 ThankYou points for a business class flight to Israel is a stellar deal.
Best Ways to Earn Citi ThankYou Points
Citi ThankYou points are one of my favorite award currencies. That's because not only can you transfer 1:1 to several unique loyalty programs, but you can also earn them quickly. This is thanks to Citi offering perhaps the best pair of point-earning cards in the award travel hobby: Citi Premier® Card and Citi® Double Cash Card.
The Citi Premier currently offers an awesome welcome bonus of 60,000 bonus ThankYou Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. The card earns 3X points per $1 spent on airfare and hotels and at gas stations, restaurants, and supermarkets. That's one of the best values available today for a card with only a $95 annual fee.
But even better, cardholders can pair their Citi Premier (or a Citi Prestige® Card) with a Citi Double Cash to earn 2X ThankYou points on every purchase! With the Citi Premier/Citi Double Cash one-two punch, it's easy to earn a bunch of ThankYou points in a hurry.
- 60,000 point signup bonus worth $750 towards airfare through the ThankYou Travel Center, or potentially much more when transferred to airline partners
- 3X points per $1 on airfare and hotels and at gas stations, restaurants, and supermarkets
- Annual Hotel Benefit: Save $100 off a single hotel stay of $500 or more (excluding taxes and fees) when you book through ThankYou.com
- No foreign transaction fees
- $95 annual fee
- 3X points per $1 spent on airfare, hotels, and at gas stations
- 3X points per $1 spent on dining at restaurants, including cafes, bars and lounges
- 3X points per $1 spent at supermarkets
- 1X points per $1 spent on all other purchases
Cardmembers who opened their Citi Premier account before April 10, 2020 will also earn 2X points on entertainment and 3X points on a broader range of travel purchases through April 9, 2021.
Past Citi ThankYou Points Transfer Bonuses
This is the first ThankYou Point transfer bonus that we've see Citi offer in a while. The last time Citi offered a Flying Blue transfer bonus was through July 2019. Here's a partial history of Citi ThankYou transfer bonuses:
|Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)||25%||04/16/2021|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||25%||02/22/2020|
|Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)||25%||07/20/2019|
|Qantas Frequent Flyer||25%||04/13/2019|
|Miles & Smiles (Turkish Airlines)||25%||02/20/2019|
|Flying Club (Virgin Atlantic)||30%||10/13/2018|
|Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)||30%||08/29/2018|
|Asia Miles (Cathay Pacific)||15%||07/04/2018|
Through April 16, 2021, Citi cardholders can convert ThankYou points to Flying Blue miles and receive a 25% transfer bonus. This makes business class flights to Europe for 43,000 points or intra-European flights for 4,000 points a reality. Provided, of course, that you're eligible to travel in those places.
If you previously found yourself utilizing Flying Blue miles regularly, you may want to consider transferring some points, even if only speculatively.
This is the first Citi transfer bonus to Flying Blue that we've seen since 2019. In fact, transfer bonuses from any program practically disappeared over the last year. Perhaps this offering from Citi is an optimistic sign of things to come.
Will you transfer Citi ThankYou Points to Flying Blue with a 25% transfer bonus?
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