Transfer JetBlue to Amtrak for up to 1.45 cents per point value

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Who knew that you could transfer JetBlue points to Amtrak at a 2 to 1 transfer ratio? Benjy at MilesToMemories, that’s who.  The trick is to use Points.com to make the transfer.

Amtrak’s California Zephyr as it travels along the Colorado river. Photo taken from my Amtrak bedroom window as the train rounded a turn. Read about my trip here.

Equal Transfer Value

JetBlue points are often worth about 1.43 cents each when used towards JetBlue flights.  In practice, the value is all over the map: you can get better or worse value based on mostly unknown variables.  See: What are JetBlue TrueBlue points worth?

Meanwhile, Amtrak points are supposed to be worth 2.9 cents each for Amtrak travel except with Acela routes where points are supposed to be worth about 2.6 cents each.  In practice, Amtrak doesn’t follow those point valuations exactly, but they’re often close.

The ability to transfer points 2 to 1 from JetBlue to Amtrak means that you can trade JetBlue points for Amtrak points of roughly equal value.  Each Amtrak point is worth roughly two JetBlue points so this is a fair trade for those who want to travel on Amtrak.

It’s worth noting that you won’t get good value transferring points in the other direction.  Amtrak points transfer to JetBlue at a poor ratio: 1,000 Amtrak points = 319 JetBlue points.

Spot Checking Amtrak Value

I’d love to someday do a sleeper car bedroom on the Amtrak Coast Starlight route between Seattle and Los Angeles.  So, I compared real world cash vs point prices on a random date in July.  As you can see below, the cash price was $1,008 and the point price was 35,784 points.  This works out to a value of 2.8 cents per Amtrak point or 1.4 cents per JetBlue point.  Either way, that’s not bad.  It’s not incredible outsized value, but it’s not bad.

Transferable Points

Almost all transferable points programs offer the ability to transfer points to JetBlue:

Amex Transfer RatioChase Transfer RatioCiti Transfer RatioMarriott Transfer RatioBrex Transfer Ratio
250 to 200 plus excise tax1 to 11 to 160K to 12.5K

Both Chase and Citi offer 1 to 1 transfers to JetBlue.  This means that you can indirectly transfer these points to Amtrak at a 2 to 1 ratio.  Again, you won’t get outsized value from your points this way, but you’ll get up to 1.45 cents per point, which isn’t bad (especially for Citi points).  And, if you have the Citi Rewards+ card, the transfer to JetBlue would qualify for a 10% points rebate.  That would then mean even better value for your points.

Each of the following posts include a section with “indirect transfer partners”. These include ideas such as transferring to Virgin Atlantic and then 2 to 3 to Hilton.  And now, each of these posts include this new (to me) option of transferring to JetBlue and then to Amtrak:

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