4 Days Left For American Express Membership Rewards Transfers To Continental…

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Updated with more information from an article originally posted on 08/01:

09/30 is the last day to transfer American Express Membership Rewards points into Continental miles.  The good news is that at least we can still use Chase Sapphire Ultimate Rewards points or Ink Bold Ultimate Rewards points to instantly transfer miles into anyone’s Continental account. And there are no fees with Chase.

Membership Rewards Transfer Options Linky

-Personally I transferred out my entire hoard of Membership Rewards points to Continental.  For my money nothing compares with the generosity of their program.  They’re part of the Star Alliance which has dozens of top-notch member airlines with great award avaialbility, they never charge fuel surcharges on award tickets, they allow for one-way awards, they have a stopover+2 open-jaws policy, they allow free date changes and routing/airline changes, and therefore are extremely valuable for me.  I have no qualms banking millions of miles with Continental.

The nice thing about program like American Express Membership Rewards, Starwood Starpoints, and Chase Ultimate Rewards is their flexibility.  What I’m about to suggest is that having the miles in Continental is better than that flexibility, but for some people that may not be true.  It may still be better to retain that flexibility to transfer to a worse program when you know exactly what you want to use your miles for.  While Continental may be better as a whole, if you just need 1 ticket it’s always possible that another program may be better for you.  And of course American Express can always add another transfer partner like AA or USAirways (both of those are transfer partners at a 1:1.25 ratio with Starwood) that would change everything.  Finally airlines are always tinkering and changing their award charts.  Having points in a flexible is a hedge against that as you can always transfer to another airline.  But still that didn’t stop me from loading up on Continental miles.

Let’s take a look at the other options.

Delta is always running promotions for bonus miles (25%, 40%, 50%, there’s even a 67% bonus offer now) when you transfer Membership Rewards points.  There’s a reason for that, and it’s because of how bad their miles are.  Miles are not all created equal, just like no 2 monetary currencies are exactly alike.  It’s nearly impossible to get tickets at the saver level, they are part of the worst alliance (Skyteam) with the stingiest and worst collection of airlines in an alliance, they charge fuel surcharges for redemptions on some partners and on some tickets originating overseas, there are no true first class redemptions possible with Delta miles, they don’t have one-way awards, they don’t allow you to cancel/change an award within 3 days of departure, their website is terrible and often misprices awards and their agents are even worse.  Gary coined them SkyPesos for good reason, and I don’t participate in their program too much.

That being said, some people have great success with Delta miles.  Every person uses miles in their own way, so if Delta works for you, then by all means grab those 50% and 67% bonuses while you can…they may not have to offer as many once Continental is gone.

Air France/KLM Flying Blue is another Skyteam option, but they charge hefty fuel surcharges.  Their are some loopholes (for example for tickets on Delta originating in Israel or buying one-way tickets from the US) though.  They also consider Israel to be part of Europe which makes it cheaper than other programs, and they have incredible promo award pricing, but those get slammed with fuel surcharges.  Overall not a place I’d want to bank miles.

BA/Iberia is the OneWorld option.  Their mileage programs are merging soon.  They’re set to announce changes to their program in November that are likely to get rid of sweet redemptions options like 40,000 miles to South America without fuel surcharges and 50,000 miles to Asia.  Massive fuel surcharges are the norm for most flying. It’s very possible that there will continue to be some good uses of BA miles.  Like there are today within the US with free stopovers or to Hawaii.  But that’s not something I would count on.

ANA was a great Star Alliatnce option until a couple months ago when they added fuel surcharges on Continental, United, USAirways, and Virgin Atlantic.  They still have a great award chart (60K to Israel in coach or 90k in Business) but it’s hard to swallow their fuel surcharges.

El Al has a terrible program with high surcharges.  If you want award tickets on El Al find yourself some AA miles to fly surcharge free.  Caveat is AA can only book coach or business tickets on El Al, not first class.

Airtran has some very intriguing aspects of their program (32 points for a ticket on another airline in the US, 50 points for a ticket on another airline to Hawaii, or 100 points for a ticket on another airline anywhere in the world) that I’ve taken advantage of in the past, but they’re being swallowed by Southwest (mooooooo) next year who I’m sure will get rid of that.

Virgin America (effective next month), Frontier, Jetblue, and Hawaiian‘s programs are mostly domestic and they don’t particularly interest me, but they may for some folks.  I tend to pay for most domestic tickets and save my miles for international trips where I can get greeter value out of them on trips I could otherwise not afford.

Virgin Atlantic, Singapore, and Alitalia charge massive fuel surcharges.  Singapore has some value as they have expanded availability for flying on Singapore, but be prepared to pay an insane amount of miles and surcharges if you want that A380 first class suite.  Alitalia only charges 80K to Israel in business class, but fuel surcharges are heavy.

-I’m not familiar with the Aeromexico (Skyteam) program, but being Skyteam I would guess there’s nothing too exciting about it.  I could be wrong here, so correct me if I’ve been missing out on something.

That leaves us with Continental (ending 09/30) and Air Canada, besides for all of the hotel options.

Air Canada’s Aeroplan program is definitely a viable Star Alliance alternative program to transfer your points to, although I still prefer Continental miles to Aeroplan. Aeroplan miles for example require activity once a year to keep the miles active and expire after 7 years no matter what. Currently Continental miles never expire, although that will change once United swallows the Continental program on January 1st. They still won’t expire in the new program if you have a Continental OnePass Plus or United MileagePlus Explorer card though.

It’s worth noting that if you shuffle your miles from United to Continental and then back to United again you’ll extend the life of your miles by 18 more month.

Another factor is that while Air Canada doesn’t charge fuel surcharges when flying on Star Alliance and partner carriers, they do charge a surcharge if you want to fly on Air Canada.  They also seem to charge slightly higher taxes than Continental/United.  Continental/United never charges a fuel surcharge on award tickets.  Continental/United also allows for one-way awards at half the miles of a round-trip award, which Air Canada charges a premium for one-way awards.

Not that there aren’t advantages to the Air Canada program.  For one, they allow 2 stopovers on a mileage ticket, so you can check out 3 cities for as long as you want to, all for the cost of just 1 award.  Continental only allows for 1 free stopover and doesn’t allow for any free stopovers on a domestic US48/Canada award ticket.  Air Canada will also allow you to fly to Asia via Europe, something that is difficult to pull off with Continental miles.

Another major advantage to the Aeroplan program is that infants are charged just $50 in coach, $75 in business, or $100 in first class on an award.  With most programs, including Continental, you need to pay 10% of the full fare for an infant.  On a business class or first class ticket that can be very expensive, possibly even expensive enough to make you consider just paying the miles for a seat for the infant.

You can borrow miles and send them over to Continental now and pay them back by opening new cards up or spending on cards within the next 12 months.  However you will be charged 2.5 cents per point if you do not pay back the points over the next year.

Here are some cards that can be opened to get points to pay back borrowed points. Be sure to clear your browser’s cookies to receive the best offer for each card:

American Express Consumer Platinum Card

American Express Consumer Premier Rewards Gold Card

American Express Consumer Gold Rewards Card

American Express Business Gold Rewards Card

American Express Business Platinum Card

Having problems seeing card offers? Getting a “card not available” or other error message? Read this!
1. Try using another browser (IE, Firefox, or Chrome) to see the offer.
2. You can try deleting your browser’s cache and cookies to see the offers. To do so just hold down the Ctrl, Shift, and Delete buttons on your keyboard and then delete your cache and cookies.
3. You can also try browsing “incognito” or “in-private” to see the offers. In IE and Firefox you can access this mode by holding down Ctrl, Shift, and P buttons on your keyboard. In Chrome you can access this mode by holding down Ctrl, Shift, and N. Then just return to DansDeals.com and click on the card offer you want.

-Just fill out the standard application. Don’t click for the shorter existing cardmember application or you will not get the best offer.

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71 Comments on "4 Days Left For American Express Membership Rewards Transfers To Continental…"

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John

Repost from last time as it seemed most people didn’t know about codes.

In case you are living under a rock, there are massive bonuses when you apply for amex charge cards with dans link in the post and then after you get the card and spend the required money on the card just call up membership rewards at 800-AXP-EARN to get matched to a better offer.

And of course you can apply for 3 cards at once with 3 different browsers to get more cards at once with one credit hit. Don’t forget about the current Starwood 30,000 point offers either.

-Premier Rewards Gold, get 75,000 points after you spend $1,000 and call to match to offer code 6661.
The Premier Rewards Gold is the easiest match to get and this card gives triple miles on airfare and double miles and gas and groceries.

Plus for Premier Rewards Gold cards applied for in July and later you can get 10,000 bonus points per month that you make 15 transactions in through November, just ask for offer code 6664.

-Platinum consumer, get 100,000 points after you spend $1,000 and call to match to offer code 5748.

The Platinum card gives lounge access and a $200 airline credit every calendar year, so that’s $400 in airline gift cards for free. ($200 in 2011 and $200 in 2012) before the annual fee is due again.
Or just cancel the card within 60 days and you get a refund of the annual fee and the lounge access still works even if the card is canceled.

-Business Gold, get 100,000 points after you spend $2,000 and call to match to offer code 6608.

-Platinum business, get 100,000 points after you spend $5,000 and call to match to offer code 5999.

Any other codes for cards that I missed?

shua

Dan, can you please explain to us novices what you’re hooked on about to CO miles. are they really so much more valuable than keeping them @amex and the many options they have. also, even on the open miles-selling market they are valued higher than CO. that said, I understand there’s some reasoning behind your recommendations and was wondering if you can share with us so that we may follow your lead, albeit not blindly. thanx

yak

Dan, will amex mr points go down alot in value soon

yos

@shua: if you will use co points to travel they are worth more than selling the points if you travel in business class using miles on airlines like continental.

yos

@yak: there are a ton of other options where to transfer amex so if it does it wont be by much

Rivka

I just applied to two cards, the Platinum and premier gold using 2 different browsers. One application told me I will get my response in 60 seconds and still havent heard from them the other one said, Please call us at 1-800-348-6103 to be connected directly to a Customer Care Professional who will provide you with a decision. Why did this happen? Did both Application go in? I can’t get through now, I will try them in the morning. Please advise. Thanks

Jane

Dan,
How come the business gold link does not offer any points unless you spend $50000.00 to get 25ooo points?
Do you have another link? I tried IE n Chrome.
jane

Jonathan

This may be a stupid question – but I’ve been doing this for a little while…emphasis on little. And, imho, AA rewards seem to be the best. I have a feeling I’m missing something about continental/united. Can someone please explain why their miles are so valuable? Your response is greatly appreciated!

danny K

Reason it happened is because sometimes you don’t press submit fast enough, and they realized you applied for two cards at once. It happened to me one time.

danny K

You don’t need another link, just apply for the card through the regular link, and once you get the card call membership rewards and ask them to match it with the bonus I’d code

Rivka

@danny K: How should I proceed?

Matza

I am confused on the lounge access for Amex Platinum after you cancel the card. Everytime I’ve used the card in a lounge, they swipe it. Apparently AMEX pays a fee to the airline. If I cancel the card, won’t this be an issue when the agent swipes it?

fred

apply and after you get approved call with the bonus offer and ask them to match it. simple????? why all the questions if the guy just explained it 100 times?????

John

Just use the regular app links for the cards and once you get them you can call and match to the 75K/100K offers.

@Rivka:
Just talk to them and explain why you need 2 cards and they should approve you.

@Matza:
Nope, the card continues to work even if its canceled. I have tried this myself and although they still swipe the card it works perfectly.

Danny

@Rivka if you got approved for one, and the other denied, call amex reconsideration, which one were you approved for?

Dan

@Jonathan:
AA miles are great, but Continental’s are better.
They both allow for free date and routing changes, even after departure, which is excellent. They also both allow for one-way travel.

Off the top of my head here are a few reasons why I prefer Continental:

-AA does not allow for a stopover (except at the North American gateway city). Continental allows for a free stopover.

-Continental is part of the Star Alliance, which has more than double the member airlines than AA’s alliance, OneWorld. That means double the opportunity for award seat availability.

-AA charges a fuel surcharge if you want to redeem miles for travel on BA. Continental never charges a fuel surcharge.
This leaves you with only 2 good options for a 5 star First Class seat in OneWorld without paying a fuel surcharge, Cathay Pacific and Qantas, and both of those are Pacific based.
With Star Alliance there are multiple European options (Swiss, Lufthansa, etc) and Pacific options (ANA, Asiana, etc.)

-With Continental you have options to go nonstop from North American to Israel on Continental, Air Canada, and USAirways. With AA your only option is El Al. And they charge more miles (90k coach/135K business) than Continental does (80K coach/120K business) for nonstop flights to Israel.

-AA has no major domestic partner, while Continental is partners with United and USAirways which means more options for domestic awards as well as domestic connections for international awards.

-AA has much stricter routing rules. If you want to go to Australia it has to be on Qantas nonstop from the US. It’s nearly impossible to find avaialbility like that in business or first.
Continental is much more lenient. You can always route to Australia via Asia or even via Europe if you find a nice agent. This makes it wayyyy easier to find availability.

Ultimately with either program you need to be savvy to find the best availability on partners, but Continental.com makes it much more accessible than AA does.

aaron

Is it ok to sign up for the Platinum card when all that comes up is 25,000 points. will 100,000 show up once I spend $1,000?

Anonymous

@Danny: I called they need me to call them from my home phone, so I will need to try later.

Anonymous

@John:
i just called amex to get the match 75k preimer offer they told me its for new card members only if i faxed them an offer i received theyll credit me the points anyway i can download this offer to fax amex?

John

@aaron:
Yes, you apply for that one and call once you get it to match to the 100k with the code as I explained in comment 1.

@Anonymous:
Code 6661 is for new applications for the premier rewards gold card.
For older premier rewards gold cards use code 5894.

ari

@John:
i called amex they told me the match offer is only for new card members but if i faxed them a copy of the offer i would get the miles credited to my act any where i can get a copy of offer to fax into amex?

Rivka

@Danny: I called them and I got approved for both cards. Now I have to see if I will end up getting the rewards of 75k/100k once I reach my $1000 spending. Thanks for the help

jaks

@Dan: what about miles and more (lufthansa)its also a star alliance ,is co still better

John

@ari:
When did you apply for the card and which card?
If you get a rep that says to fax something just call back until you get a better rep.

Dan

@Rivka:
Congrats!

@jaks:
Lufthansa charges hefty fuel surcharges. Air Canada and Continental and much better than it.

Yidel

@John: Please excuse my not having this clear.
As soon as you get the card, you call to match the code?
OR do I first spend the $1000 or whatever and only then call?
I just got the card, i’m afraid if i wait till i finally reach the spending threshold the code will be gone..

Thanks

Yitzy

I just got targeted for a Amex premier awards gold card offer in the mail, offering me 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000/3 months. I don’t know much about AMEX and don’t have any open cards yet, but this card sounds good. Should I get it?

For me, the only problem with the card, is that it has an annual fee after the first year. I don’t want to pay any annual fees. So, after the first year passes, can I transfer the points to another card that doesn’t have an annual fee? What would you recommend for a first time AMEX card holder? Are there better deals out there?

Any tips are greatly appreciated.

Danny

I THINK THIS IS SERIOUS: THERE IS A WHOLE THREAD ON FLYER TALK REGARDING PEOPLE WHO APPLY FOR AMEX CARDS WITHOUT A TARGETED OFFER, AND CALL UP TO GET IT MATCHED WITH BONUS ID’S. They said as of last week they are cracking down and upgrading their software, and not allow people to call up and match with bonus codes, unless it was a targeted offer. I would appreciate if anyone can post if this has happened to them within th e last couple days

Leah

Dan please tell me if I can transfer my miles on my American express delta card to Continental miles…

yuda

Can I open the amex platinum and take global entery and priority club and then cancel before 60 days and get my money back and keep all those things?

Anonymous

@Danny: i got today matched offer 5748 just said that my friend got it and i want to get it they gave it to me right away

Anonymous

could i transfer sapphire points to anyone’s continental access or the name on the access must be the same as on the card thank u for the help

Dan

@Leah:
Of course not.

@yuda:
Yup

@Anonymous:
Lots of people on the forums are still posting that it works just fine.

@Anonymous:
You can transfer to anyone.

John

The codes for Platinum (100K) and Gold (75K) still work perfectly for the multiple people I have helped with it this week.

trying123

@John: can somone pls advise how to get the customer service put the points on right away on my wifes account they put it pending right away on my acount they keep on telling me six to eight weeks which is the best wording to use to get them to do it right away

Rob

Thanks Dan.
I just called starwood to transfer my pts to Flying Blue and they said that they dont transfer to Flying Blue. What am I missing?

Dav

why dose Continental charge me 40 bucks to transfer 63000 points?

Dan

@Rob:
Just transfer the points on spg.com

@Dav:
The US government charges a tax that AMEX passes on if you transfer to a US program.

frank

any advise?

Bobby

What advantage does Aeroplan have over US airways?

Shmuly

Hi Dan, I just canceled my Amex platinum card I wonder how and when I will get the annual fee refund?
Thank you

Pinsk19

Is it bad for your credit to open and then close down credit cards?

Shuly

How do you borrow points from american express? Thanks

Yitzy

Is there an expiration on the offer codes above??

danfan

My wife got an email offer for 50,000 continental points but she recently applied for the chase southwest from august 10th would she still be able to apply for the continental card ?

Anonymous

is it possible to transfer mr points to any co acc or only if the co acc has the same name?

chaya

@John: 5894 offer is expired, it was only good if you applied for the card before july 31. I applied for the premier rewards card the beg of august and i just called them up with the codes, like i said, 5894 they said wouldnt work cuz of when i applied and the new code 6661 is good till october, but bc i alreaady have another amex (the business gold) i cannot use that code….
anyone ever have this prob? do you think if i call them back and speak to someone else they will give it to me?

dovy

i and other people i know are having trouble getting the promotions on gold and platinum even though our accounts were noted that we are going to get it
can anyone give advise or help ?

Dan

@dovy:
As mentioned on the DansDeals Forums, offer codes appear to be dead as of 09/07.

dovy

even if i was already told i am gonna get it ?

lightbulb

maybe dd should have a web page set up where people who were told they will receive the promotion and are not getting it can sign up and petition thereby putting pressure on amex to stand behind there promise

EDP

It seems that if you are a current platinum card holder you can’t get the 100k offer even with the code. The representative is telling me to send the offer I got in the mail to them. I assume I can cancel the card and take advantage of this offer.

ari

But if I transfer all of my MR points to COn don’t they automatically become UA miles in January? So, doesn’t that significantly reduce the value with things like *net blocking, etc…?

Uri

I just booked 6 tickets to Israel with 80,000 miles each on Delta Airlines. Maybe they are not that bad. Thanks Dan.

Uri

Also I thina that Delta is the only Airline in the us that don’t charge extra fee for last minute booking and their milege never expires.

Dan

@Bobby:
More free stopovers, cheaper infant tickets, etc.

@ari:
United hasn’t participated in Starnet blocking in a long time.
My guess is that we’ve seen the last of it from them as the new Contnental management team is against stuff like that.

@Uri:
Like I said, there are general rules, and then there’s the 1 time you need a ticket.
You can definitely argue that you should transfer some to Delta or keep them in AMEX for flexibility. But you’ll never have another chance to transfer them to Continental after 09/30.
It’s not an easy decision.

@Uri:
True. But it’s really easy to keep Continental/United miles from expiring.
Right now, just transferring miles back and forth extends them.
In the future having their credit card will make them non-expiring. Or just buying a magazine for a few hundred miles keeps your entire balance alive as well.

There are also ways to workaround the expedite/last minute fees on most other airlines. See the DD forums for more info on that.

shocked at dan

Dan , we all fail to see that by tranfering to Continental /united the points will ALL zero out in 18 months …so if you dont use it …you loose it !!! thats a big problem if you dont fly as often as you do , Most folks only make large trips once every few years and cant plan that far ahead .

I would strongly reconsiter moving all your points over . perhaps just some
to move back and forth will cost you as well , keep in mind united has one of the worse customer service departments around

Dan

@shocked at dan:
You are extremely misguided. I don’t know why you think that, but I can promise you that you will not have your miles zeroed out in 18 months by Continental/United as long as you have any activity in your account or have their credit card.

Just buying a magazine for 300 miles will extend your entire United mileage balance for another 18 months. And of course flying or using miles for a ticket will extend your entire balance for 18 months.

There is no hard expiration of Continental/United miles. Aeroplan miles on the other hand require activity every 12 months and carry a 7 year hard expiration by which time they expire regardless of activity. Continental/United miles will never expire if you have any activity.

Also if you have the Continental/United credit card your miles will never expire.

Unsure

Dan,
-‘m gonna want 100k continental miles in my continental account to use for a flight to israel and I have 100k mr points and 100k saphire points. Should I transfer the mr
Points and save the saphire or use the saphire and save the mr points? Thanks a lot!

Yitzman

Hi Dan-

I called today to get my Amex Premier rewards gold card and when I mentioned about the offer code 6661 to get additional 25,000 points they told me they have no idea what I’m talking about. Help! This will be my first Amex card so I’m not familiar with their ropes. Thanks!

Dan

@Unsure: Personally I’d transfer from MR.

@Yitzman:
AMEX stopped matching offer codes on 09/07.

shocked at dan

Dan , I must apologise , didnt mean to come out swinging … I for one have over 500k amex point but DONT have a continental credir card & will prob forget to buy a mag for 300 miles …Most ppl will forget and have the risk of loosing it all ..

Most of all , want to wish you and your mishpacha a happy & healthy !

Cholentfresser

doesn’t incognito not recognize that it’s coming from dansdeals? or was that fixed somehow?

Dan

@shocked at dan:
AwardWallet, for example, will send you an email before your miles expire to get some activity. Activity every 18 months is not very hard.

Next week there should be nice promotions to get their card as well.

Ksiva Vchasima Tova.

@Cholentfresser:
It appears that as long as you access DansDeals.com from incognito that it retaines the cookies for that individual session.

levi

how do i get 67% bonus on delta?

levi

thanks Dan

szymon131

I only need miles to fly JFK/LGA – WAW. Transfering to Continetal seems like a perfect option for me. The thing is the miles I would transfer now I will not use until mid 2012. Without knowing details about Continental/United programs merger I am a bit hesitant. Can anyone shed more light? BTW…I received my AMEX gold less than 2 months ago and did 75K match code (didn’t meet $1K spend yet) but AMEX for some reason deposited extra 25K points on my account. Any ideas why? I guess I should take them and run :)

fred

Only a few hours left! If u r keeping rosh hashana this year by the time u make havdala it will be too late!

Al

Can Citi Aadvantage american express miles to Continental? These are the cards citi had the 75k miles sign up offers a year ago. I have 163k on one amex and 80k on a citi aadvantage visa. Any way I can transfer to Continental?

ush

is it possible to transfer continental onepass miles into amex points?

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