AMEX Membership Rewards points have long been valuable because you can transfer them into anyone’s airline account.
Chase officially says that you can only transfer to your own or your spouse’s mileage account, though people haven’t reported issues transferring Chase points to other people’s mileage accounts. (Note that people have had Chase cards closed for transferring points into other people’s Chase accounts who don’t reside at their address.)
According to several DDF reports though as of today it is no longer possible to link other people’s frequent flyer account to their AMEX account. In the past this was easily doable online but now it’s blocked.
For now you can still link and transfer to authorized user accounts, so if you do want to transfer to someone you would have to open a secondary card for them on your account. To open a secondary account they will ask for a social security number, but you can get it without providing them information by just saying that you don’t have that information on you right now.
Some people are reporting that some reps may still allow you to make transfers to others over the phone. If you have success with that post a comment! That’s likely something that will be short-lived though…
This comes on the heels of AMEX limiting bonuses on consumer cards to once per lifetime. Ouch.
HT: mordy44, via DDF and AJK, esquire.