Qatar Airways is offering a transfer bonus of up to 40% when you transfer from select bank programs to Qatar Airways Avios. The only participating United States-based bank program is Citi ThankYou points. Still, this could be a great way to convert your Citi points to Avios (that can be moved from Qatar to British Airways, Iberia, or Aer Lingus). Unfortunately, the potentially slow transfer time will limit the utility here.
- Qatar Airways Privileges Club is offering a transfer bonus from the following bank programs:
- Ahli Bank Qatar, Ahli United Bank, Ahlibank Oman, Air Miles, American Express, Amex Centurion Design Cards by Hyundai Card (Korea), Citibank, Commercial Bank of Qatar, Doha Bank, Dukhan Bank, Hana Members, HSBC (Greece, Mexico, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Hong Kong), Kuwait Finance House, Masraf Al Rayan, Ping An E-wallet (Wanlitong), Qatar International Islamic Bank (QIIB), Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB), Qatar National Bank (QNB), CIMB, KBank, Standard Chartered Bank Singapore, BSF (Banque Saudi Fransi)
- Bonus received will be as follows:
- Transfer up to 20K points = get a 20% transfer bonus
- Transfer more than 20K points = get a 40% transfer bonus
- Bonus Avios will post within 45 days
- Valid for transfers from June 1, 2022 to June 30, 2022
Citi is widely thought to have weak transfer partners in comparison to Chase and Amex (and now in comparison to Capital One and Bilt). However, now that Qatar Airways uses the Avios scheme, things are on the upswing. This transfer bonus awards 20% on transfers of up to 20K points at once or 40% on transfers of more than 20K points (note that the bonus applies to each transfer, not cumulatively).
The bonus is being offered by Qatar Airways rather than by Citi, so you won’t see it reflected before making the transfer but rather on the Qatar side after the transfer.
This could certainly be a solid deal if you’re looking to pick up Avios for one of their many sweet spots like short oneworld flights (via British Airways Avios), business class flights on Qatar to Doha (70K Avios one way), or Iberia business class from the East Coast to Europe (34K Avios one way during off-peak dates). See this post for more Avios sweet spots.
Unfortunately, terms indicate that the bonus Avios will post within 45 days. It could just be that they are planning to under-promise and over-deliver, but if the bonus Avios really do take a month and a half to post, this deal won’t be very interesting to most since it doesn’t typically make sense to transfer points for a “maybe, someday” use but rather for a use you have in mind immediately. On the other hand, if you use Avios frequently enough, I could see where maybe this makes sense if you were to transfer the amount you need to book an award you want right now and you view the 40% bonus that will come later as a head start on your next award / way to uplift Citi points you were going to transfer anyway, it could still be appealing. Keep in mind that those with the Citi Rewards+ card can get 10% of redeemed points back per year up to 10K points back.
H/T: One Mile at a Time