(EXPIRED) Transfer bonus: 15% more LifeMiles from Membership Rewards

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Amex Membership Rewards is offering a 15% transfer bonus when transferring points to Avianca LifeMiles. Avianca already has some pretty great values and benefits to its award program, so getting an additional 15% for your points is a great deal if you’ve got Star Alliance redemptions in mind.

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The Deal

  • Get a 15% transfer bonus when converting Amex Membership Rewards to Avianca LifeMiles though 4/1/19
  • With the bonus the transfer ratio is 1,000 Membership Rewards = 1,150 Avianca LifeMiles

Key Terms

  • Expires 4/1/19

Quick Thoughts

Avianca is a Star Alliance carrier with a competitive award chart. They do not pass on fuel surcharges and are thus a solid transfer partner. We’ve written a couple of posts on taking advantage of some of the Avianca sweet spots in the past year:

The short story is that there are some excellent values to be had and those only get better with a transfer bonus like this. Remember that Avianca is also a Citi ThankYou transfer partner, so you can also top up your account with ThankYou points (Citi offered a 25% transfer bonus not that long ago). Additionally, there are a couple of Avianca credit cards issued by Banco Popular that each offer welcome bonuses. Click the card names below to go to our Frequent Miler card pages for more info on these cards.

Card Offer
Card Offer

Also keep in mind that Avianca often sells miles with big bonuses, sometimes bringing the price to as low as about 1.3c per point, so it is also often possible to top off your LifeMiles account pretty cheaply. Still, for those with a healthy stash of Membership Rewards points looking for an Avianca redemption, this might be a good chance to stock up on miles.

Be sure to check Avianca’s website for availability of the award you’d like to book before transferring. Most reports indicate that booking by phone is very frustrating if not impossible. I’ve read some reports of success via email bookings, but I’d probably not rely on booking anything that isn’t available on the Avianca site (which doesn’t always show the same availability you’ll see with United or Aeroplan).

As always, we have added this to our list of Current point transfer bonuses.

H/T: Running With Miles

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Stay away from Lifemiles!

The Lifemiles experience is truly awful. I went to book an award flight to confirm the miles and fees and it gave me one price. I couldn’t proceed with the booking without transferring the miles first so I double checked all of the costs and went ahead with the transfer from AMEX. It was barely worth it with the 15% bonus. Then I went ahead with the booking and it said it couldn’t do the reservation online so I had to call. I called and they were able to complete the booking eventually, but they couldn’t take the payment for the fees because the payment center was closed. I called back the next day to make the payment and they wanted to charge me $161 instead of the $25 showing on the website. They absolutely refused to budge on it even though I was staring at the price online which still showed $25. I have no other use for the lifemiles and I’m skeptical of their value so I was stuck. I asked AMEX if they could reverse the transfer, but they couldn’t. So I just ate the $136 and learned my lesson. I was expecting over 1.5 cents per AMEX point and got 1.3 cents. It’s not the end of the world, but at 44,000 points it’s a pretty big hit as that’s almost all of my signup bonus. I would have been more patient with a transfer, but my wife and I want a vacation and I fear sitting on points for too long because they sometimes de-value and we don’t travel frequently enough to take advantage of the sweet spots. I do very careful math when I sign up for my cards and use them. So when I’m expecting 1.5 cents per point and get 1.3 cents it makes me sad.

Stay away from Lifemiles!

[…] way to get miles in your account to transfer to someone else. There’s also currently a 1.15 transfer bonus from Membership Rewards to LifeMiles which would make this offer even […]

[…] 15% bonus transferring American Express Membership Rewards points to Avianca LifeMiles through April…. I prefer to buy LifeMiles when they’re on sale cheap and save my Amex points. […]


Will a transfer extend the expiration of miles already in a Lifemiles account?