While Amtrak points are highly valuable towards train travel, a popular use of Amtrak points in the loyalty enthusiast community has long been transfers to Choice Privileges. Through Amtrak’s partnership with Choice, it has been possible for those with Amtrak elite status or $20K annual spend on the Amtrak credit card to convert 5,000 Amtrak points into 15,000 Choice Privileges points (up to an annual cap of 50,000 Amtrak points converted). Unfortunately, reader Sunny points out that it appears that Amtrak has removed Choice privileges from the transfer options page.
As you can see above, the only options to “transfer points from my account” on the Amtrak transfer points page are Hilton Honors or Audience Rewards. There has definitely been a change here because Greg quoted the text below under “Terms & Conditions” when he wrote a post about conversions in 2017:
- Current Amtrak Guest Rewards Select or Select Plus Members may redeem up to a total of 50,000 Amtrak Guest Rewards points per calendar year for Choice Privileges, Hilton Honors, and Audience Rewards points combined (cannot be combined with cardholder redemption limit below). Current Amtrak Guest Rewards Select Executive Members are exempt from these point redemption limits.
- Current active cardholders of the Amtrak Guest Rewards® World Mastercard® issued by Bank of America with an annual Net Retail spend on the card of $20,000 or more per calendar year
Notice that the first bullet point mentioned Choice Privileges previously, whereas the text on Amtrak’s site no longer mentions Choice Privileges.
This is a disappointing no-notice change. I’m not sure when Amtrak removed this conversion (it is possible that this happened a while ago), but anyone who was sitting on a large stash of Amtrak points is now stuck with either redeeming them on Amtrak for good value (up to about 2.9c per point) or accepting a subpar transfer to Hilton Honors (which offers a ratio of 1 Amtrak point to 2 Hilton points in increments of 5K Amtrak points up to 50K transferred points per year).