Which Rewards Programs Allow You to Combine Points and Miles for Free?

Comments

  • Excellent and useful resource. Thanks.

    Possibly would have been even better to split into three separate posts for maximum clarity. (CC, hotel, airline)

  • Definitely a helpful post, and it’s certainly good to see large programs like Hilton start to loosen the strings ever so slightly in ways that can help out a family, etc.

  • Great summary. I need to get on the Chase Ultimate Rewards train with a Sapphire card.

  • Very useful post, especially for someone who “oversees” miles and points for several family members. How I wish IHG would loosen their transfer rules, too.

    • I FEEL YOUR PAIN! I think everyone in my family has the IHG card with some random amount of points that doesn’t amount to a whole heck of a lot which I’d love to consolidate.

  • Great post! It would be helpful to know how long the transfers take so we can plan accordingly. Chase transfers are instant, provided the accounts are already linked.

  • My wife and I have a household account with BA. Using Ultimate Rewards we are able to share points for award travel on UA. It would be great to be able to share AA and DL miles.

  • Thanks for this comprehensive guide! It is really helpful.

  • Jacqueline parsons says:

    Great article! The ways of getting round restrictions was of particular interest, many thanks.

  • This is very useful info since I maintain a lot of accounts for four people. I’ll be combining Hilton points now for an awesome 7-night vacation for next year. Thanks so much!

  • I am going to print this post and keep it at my fingertips. Great info, and thx!

  • Does household member for chase have to be your family or just someone who lives in the same house as you?

    • The terms do not explicitly state that there must be a familial relationship, however, I do think the intent is there. That said, if it were me and say I was engaged to be married, I would have no problem transferring points to/from my fiancé in good faith.

  • WOW! This is a great list. I am always worried about pooling points when I have my fiance open a card. Glad to get these tips.

  • great resource!! Thanks for compiling!

  • Maryjane says:

    This article is full of great information. I already oversee my parents accounts and didn’t realize the benefits that were available for pooling and sharing. It’s particularly nice when the sharing isn’t limited to family sharing the same address.

  • You can also transfer AeroMexico Premier points through their “Family Program” at no charge. You can only transfer points among spouses and their children.

  • Does anyone know if it’s possible to pool Fairmont rewards points earned with the Chase Fairmont card?

  • The Hilton Honors point sharing is great. I booked two nights (worth $600 each) for me and my parents in NYC in December, one using a reward certificate and the other using points. Neither has seen Christmas in the city, so this was a great opportunity. Using the point sharing, my dad is transferring half the points for the second night to me.

  • Thanks for the comprehensive guide. After seeing orphan points go to waste across programs, I’m definitely taking a closer look at combinable points.

  • MICHAELJ says:

    This is the most useful summary of the sharing issue I have ever seen! Thank you!

  • lorem ipsum says:

    My household has four Chase UR account holders (let’s call them A, B, C, and D). If each can transfer to just one other household member, can B, C, and D each transfer points to A?

    • This is a question I would recommend you ask directly to Chase. My understanding of the terms as it reads from https://ultimaterewardspoints.chase.com/combine-points/add-new-account (You can move your points, but only to another Chase card with Ultimate Rewards belonging to you, or one member of your household.) is that yes, this would be an acceptable use of combining points, but I do not think this is the intended use. I think the intent is to have a 1:1 relationship, not many:1. Hence, my suggestion to contact Chase directly.

  • amzsinger@gmail.com says:

    Thanks for this post! A lot of great information here. Based on what I’m reading it seems the Chase Sapphire Reserved is the way to go! I’ll be checking back on this regularly!

  • lorem ipsum says:

    Sun Country Ufly allows free pooling of up to 10 Ufly Rewards members.

  • Nice to have this all in one place – thanks

  • Great post, found quite a few programs that allow pooling that I was not aware of like Hhonors.

  • This is the most helpful post I’ve read yet on this page. Thanks! Gotta go and transfer points!

  • I believe that ANA allows for family sharing redemption as well, for a small fee to setup the initial household connection.

  • The family and address restrictions are frustrating for me. My partner and I do not ever plan to marry, but have been together over 10 years. Further complicating this is the fact that we maintain two residences, a pied a terre in the city where we work and he owns a business, and our actual residence. We each use one as our primary address so that one of us can vote in elections in each location as they both affect us.

    90% of our travel is together. I tend to put all of our joint hotel stays in my name for simplicity sake, and we each have our own airline accounts. He has the Sapphire Reserve, but I have most of the other points-earning cards in our household, including Sapphire Preferred and Freedom. I’m worried that if we try to pool our Chase points, we may get denied over a technicality. I considered changing the address on my Chase accounts, but then I worry that I may have trouble down the line with addresses not matching somewhere else.

    • Angie, you have a situation that I bet no one has really sat down and thought through. I would suggest calling up Chase and discussing the situation — they want you to be a happy customer and given your circumstances I’d be interested in hearing what their take is on it.

  • My husband and I both have separate Chase Sapphine Reserve cards. When I looked up their policy about transferring points to each other I understood it to say that transfers can only be done if we are authorized users on each other’s cards. Since we decided not to pay the annual fees to add each other as authorized users on each others’ cards, is it your understanding we can still transfer points to each other despite the fact that we are both sole authorized users for each of our cards? This would give us unlimited flexibility on how we use our cards and our points!

    • The terms as they read verbatim (from https://ultimaterewardspoints.chase.com/combine-points/add-new-account) are “You can move your points, but only to another Chase card with Ultimate Rewards belonging to you, or one member of your household.”

      As that reads, if I were you, I wouldn’t be concerned with you and your husband moving points between one another’s accounts. If you have ANY concern, I would recommend calling up Chase and asking for clarification. This is my interpretation (which I, personally am confident with), but you should be confident in your decision.

      • Hmmm….that link takes me to a page headed ‘add another Chase cardholder’. When I tried to transfer points to my husband (and vice versa) on the Ultimate Rewards website it provided a drop down menu to choose which authorized user to receive the points…and since we are both only authorized on our own cards and not each other’s, there was no way to transfer. So I’ll do as you suggest and call them. Fingers crossed!

        • Once you’re at your Ultimate Rewards account page, if you hover over your points balance in the title menu bar a drop down that says “Combine Points” should come up. I click that and then I can click “Add household member” where I type in a card number and last name.

          This allows you to move Ultimate Rewards between card accounts and then you can move your Ultimate Rewards to your Hyatt or United and he to his through his account. If you want to be able to transfer your Ultimate Rewards to his United account, he’d need to be an authorized user. Crazy, but sorta clear?

  • Hard to go wrong with SPG, but, I worry about its future after the Marriott Merger.

    • amzsinger@gmail.com says:

      I’ve found the merger to be helpful. Status on one is automatically linked to the other and for now points can easily be moved between programs. Plus there’s the benefit of so many more options of hotels. I guess only time will tell, but so far so good for me at least

  • ANGELO FONSECA says:

    great. very usefull guide. thanks

  • My favorite transferable points are Chase Ultimate Rewards points. It is really very easy to do and thank goodness for that! My partner and I were just able to combine our points to pay for all of our flights when we take my mother to Europe on a tour of the Christmas Markets in December!

  • Great resource — thanks!

  • I love the Jetblue family pooling option.

  • wish the us airlines would get on board

  • The American AA Advantage miles are my favorite

  • Binita Patel says:

    Great summary – need to get on the Citi transfer option soon!

  • Can you extend points expiration by pooling?

    • Don’t count on it. While SPG will count activity if you transfer from your SPG to your Marriott — traditional pooling like with Hilton or BA won’t extend the life of points unfortunately.

  • YVONNE JOHNSON says:

    Good article!
    Korean Air Skypass is fantastic for those who live in Hawaii as you can fly west from Honolulu to Korea and then on to Asia, India, and beyond.

  • I traveled with Emirates and asked them to send my points on alaska. Don’t why I had an assumption that Alaska Airline let you move points within accounts for free. My bad!

    Now, anyone have any idea how I move points? My kid and my wife both have 10K points in their account now.

    • You can of course pay to transfer, but what about looking to redeem one-way tickets instead of round-trip? Perhaps you can find some sub-10k redemptions that make sense.

  • Hope to see Marriott follow SPG’s suit and not have a transfer fee.

  • I agree MichaelJ extremely useful. I am lucky my husband researches all of the cards for us and I will be sharing all of this info. With him. I look forward to pooling more points and traveling more often.

  • super helpful- thank you

  • Very useful information. Need to refer back once a while.

  • Thanks much for that great information! Keep up the great work!

  • Excellent post! Definitely bookmarking this for later.

  • Nice summary. After the merge of SPG and Marriott, I have moved from Hyatt to SPG now

  • Air Flyer says:

    Very useful and handy list. Thanks!

  • Good to know!

  • This is the thing I hate about Amex MR – can’t share or combine

  • Adam Parsons says:

    Love these type of articles as they always throw up a little something you didn’t know about, cheers guys!

  • Very nice summary. Many of them I can not imagine that they have these options. Thanks a lot.

  • Very useful post.
    The rules for combining points and miles are different and this create confusion.
    Moreover, also the way the pool works is different.
    This is definitely one of the aspect of miles and points I know less!

  • I literally didn’t realise you could share any of these! Thanks

  • Leslie Johnson says:

    Love chase between my personal and biz cards plus my husbands personal and biz cards we can bank a ton of points every month. Wish IHG would allow family pooling without a charge!

  • Great Post – Its a pity that points under a thousand cannot be transferred or combined ( SPG , MARRIOTT , HILTON) . Also All my kids have a few thousand orphan IHG point . Pity about the charge.

    • Relatively recent change with sPG. Makes no sense at all. They should be happy to get rid of Oprah accounts with balances less than 1,000.

  • I have been a Marriott Rewards Platinum member for years and never knew this transfer option existed. Thanks!

  • Aunali Khaku says:

    I have 50,000 points plus on Jetblue because of family pooling. I earned the miles on emirates. I knew i would never get enough on emirates to get a free flight, so we used our jetblue rewards, which allows for earning miles on emirates, and two international trips with three in our family has us with 50,000 points plus in jetblue!

  • Marilyn B says:

    Great summary of useful info. Ultimate Rewards combining has worked well in my household.

  • All great pooling info. Now deciding which works best toward my travel goals

  • Kevin Davis says:

    What about Spirit Airlines??

    • Given that miles expire within 3 months of earning (unless you have and actively use their co-brand credit card) we don’t really consider this a viable program and didn’t look into Spirit and its capabilities of points combining. That said, based on what I’ve seen, no you cannot.

  • Solid Post. I wish there were more opportunities in Canada for transferable points currencies. Amex Rewards isn’t up to scratch compared to it’s US counterpart thanks to only a few partners.

  • I’d love to see all programs allow combining — if fraud is a concern, restrict how often people can designate their households. If Amazon & Google figured it out, it can’t be hard, let me at our miles!

  • Good reference for points pooling.

  • I love when you guys do these! So much useful info in one place! Really we may be trying on our own to have all the info but really would be lost without you all! I found that I can transfer from my Chase UR to my hubby’s United account and that saved our trip! thank you!

  • You can do Marriot transfers also via SPG if you have linked accounts.

  • Is there any way to convert British Airways Avios to Hilton Honor Rewards? Or to any other hotel program?

    • You could try through Points.com Exchange — but I highly doubt the transfer rates would be something you might want to avoid. Unfortunately, there are no direct transfer options from BA > Hilton, but you could book a hotel directly using Avios: https://www.britishairways.com/travel/spend-avios-hotels-cars/public/en_us

    • I tried to transfer Avios to Hilton Rewards points but failed. But your information on the British Airways Household Accounts provided a different route for me. Since I won’t be using my Avios for flights, I decided to use them for lodging. Same for my spouse. With the Household Account, me can combine our Avios and have enough to make a great vacation lodging spend. Thanks for the great information in your post!

  • Trying to use our British Avios – based on the information posted above, I set up a Household Account and included my spouse as a member.. Both my spouse & I have Avios in separate accounts now. In order to arrange the lodging we want, it will take most of the combined Avis we have. My question – in the process of setting up the Household Account, are the Avios from each of our accounts available to make the lodging?

    Or does the Household Account only allow either of us to use my Avios, but not hers?

    • When using Avios from a household account, deductions are taken from the accounts of both members — you’ll each see a percentage taken, based on the redemption. You effectively redeem together.

  • Thanks for compiling this. I was wondering if anyone else had a ‘family pooling’ type option like Jet Blue. Now I don’t have to look up everyone else separately.

  • Thanks for the article, it would be great to see even more analytic/comparative information about reward programs.

  • Thanks for the transfer recap! I’ve used the chase and spg transfers before but this showed me more options.

  • Thank you. I was starting to try to figure out some of this on my own. Now, I have it all in one place.

  • Camilla Sauder says:

    Hilton’s new pooling is why I referred my husband, got 15,000 points, and he got 75,000 points for only spending $1,000 in three months. Added together we now have over 265,000 points and their reserve four nights, get one free with points, makes this a win-win for us especially since their cards carry no annual fees.

  • IHG is the laughing stock charging $5 per 1000 points transferred. Scammers.

  • Do both Marriott members have to be Gold or Platinum to be able to transfer and receive for free? Or, is the one transferring just need to be the one to be Platinum or Gold?

  • Hello! Thank you for this helpful guide. I was wondering if you mind sharing where you got the language re: transferring Amex MR to an authorized users loyalty account? I have been looking at their terms and conditions available online (I’m not a cardholder) and it only says that it can only be transferred to a loyalty account in the primary cardholders name. I’m curious if maybe something has changed recently or perhaps cardholders have more robust T&C that go into authorized users? Thanks again!

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